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Pt. 1: The practical stuff

OK! I'm returning from England with critter socks (fox, hedgehog, squirrel) and marmalade. Everyone on here gets dibs before I offer the Random British Stuff to fb.

([personal profile] sovay, the obligatory Weird Crisps are for you. Which segues to...)

Pt. 2: Impractical Wishes
Being an open letter to Sovay.
I'm glad you're excited about Weird Crisps! You said to find something you'd like, and that's what I could actually bring you in my luggage. But there's so many other things that you'd've liked, but that I probably can't get through customs. Kippered herring, for example, is (insofar as I'm aware) unavailable in the US, and it was on the menu at our hotel in Northumberland, but I can't imagine I can bring one back in my suitcase. I thought about bringing you a stone from Lindisfarne, since while you're not interested in the religious side, tidal islands--especially the doubly-tidal, seal-haunted St. Cuthbert's Isle--would seem to me to be right up your alley. (Seriously, the seals were like twenty yards away from Peter and me, tops.) Sadly, its stones aren't terribly distinctive, and I don't want to bring you some random piece of rock that you'll be wondering, six months from now, what the sam hill it was. Your ungodson ran around the rocks and sands and mudflats barefoot, as you would have; and we nearly made it out to the sandpit that seals had been swimming over an hour earlier. The sky was blue, the wind was chill, the view of the fields of Berenicia stretching up toward The Cheviot was breathtaking. It was your sort of morning. All I can bring home for you is the memory.
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grumble grumble stupid pharmacies that bug you endlessly to get your prescriptions refilled, then only hold them for like 48 hours when you actually manage to do so, grumble.

Anyway. Another week has slid by, and I still haven't gotten around to writing up the rest of last weekend. ([personal profile] julian has been travelloging after the fact, so I guess I could do the same?) But tomorrow I am off to the Cape with a kid and a couple of passengers, to ring bells and annoy crustaceans.* Wish us luck!

* OK, you know and I know that technically horseshoe crabs are chelicerates, Order Xiphosura; but the older literature referred to all marine arthropods as crustaceans, and there really isn't a better word. And who knows, we may find hermit crabs or something.
PS: Limulus polyphemus is one of only FOUR living species worldwide? yeesh.
PPS: Limulus polyphemus is a really great name.
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- My home internet, on third thought, IS on the fritz. At first I thought it was a one-time glitch; then I assumed my antivirus was doing an electronic autoimmune response (and deleted it, and reinstalled Firefox); but last night I found out the Mitbewohner has ALSO been having problems. So it looks like Comcast is to blame. Bagbiting bloody oligopolistic internet companies.

- So I am writing this from a coffee shop. I am spending far too much time (and cash) here. I'm turning into a %#$(&*) regular.
Sadly, CBD is both closer and (ironically) has an atmosphere far more conducive to getting job applications done than either the job center or the library.

- I spent a pleasant Saturday hanging out with Squigamunk & Partner. We hiked Morse Mountain, first introduced to me by Ben Birney on a (mostly) Guys Weekend the fall before Peter was born. Almost exactly seven years ago, yikes. Read more... )

- Yesterday: I sort of felt like I should have been in New York but...well...I went to DC two years ago, climate marches aren't actually that interesting, also I'm broke. Also I wanted to hang out with Squigamunk. (And make sure I didn't leave the choir tenor-less for the Hallelujah Amen, though strictly we're into rationalization now.)
...Actually, that and dealing with internet issues, and playing too much Civ.III, about covers yesterday.

- Today: a couple more job applications. Temp.Agency#1 still doesn't know what happened to a phone banking job I was supposed to have heard about; on the other hand, their NH office is advertizing for a copyediting position, and they actually sounded optimistic about my resume. So we'll keep our fingers crossed on that one, as well.

And now it's suddenly lunchtime. Time to head home with the remains of my coffee, eat something with actual nutrition...and figure out what else I can apply for. groan.

* Look, it's TWO probable Norse hoaxes in the same state. YOU keep track of them.
** Mostly 'cause he sounds like he's been gargling gravel.
Also, that song? Seems to have been written specifically to make it sound like your guitarist is flubbing the beginning when you do it in RB.

(Update)Photo here
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Weather-wise, today was about my ideal: the ground watered from yesterday's rain, clear skies, high winds. Remarkable surf on the beach, where I spent much of the day with Peter. (Well, it's a giant sandbox, and also there are rocks to climb on. He takes after his father that way.)

I also built sandcastles (sometimes to the neglect of helping with his...), while also reflecting on real fortifications. With one of the batteries on House Island staring you in the face, it was hard not to; and i reflected for the fiftieth time that in the nineteenth century they spent a vast deal of effort turning Portland into a real pig's 4r$3 to attack. Just along the shore from us, the site now occupied by SMCC is defended by a half-built, yet still bad4$$ stone battery and (what I hadn't realized before) a rather impressive set of earthworks above. So to attack Portland Harbor, you'd have to run the gammut of that AND House Island (the latter taking ranging shots as you approached and firing into your stern as you ewent by...); and that's AFTER you got past Portland Head, and BEFORE you even think about Fort Allen on the Eastern Prom, or the truly ridonculous Fort Gorges

Peter himself is now conked out in the back seat of my car: fell asleep within minutes of getting in, after two hours of throwing sticks off the rocks (bad plan, as it turned out) and running on the sand. He's going to wake up rather dehydrated and with salt still on his hands, but I haven't the heart to wake him. Besides, he woke up at 6 this morning.


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