Tag Archives: road

My Heart Is Full



Warm hearty breakfasts and a carpet of leaves to my car each morning! Just two of the many reasons I revel in the best of seasons. I declare my love of autumn in operatic tones regularly!

On the heels of the new season was a most wicked storm- nearly floated away this past weekend on a flooded stretch of road. Wet brakes are TERRIFYING, like roller skates down a steep hill, how was I gonna stop without scraping something up? ♦

Survey Says

Name something of value: freedom!

Not just value for the physical liberties we’re blessed with in this country, but freedom from the bondages we create for ourselves in the habits we acquire, the patterns of thought we develop and nurse. Varying degrees of this freedom may ebb and flow as life carries onward, sometimes at a higher peak than at others. Much like the waves found at the ocean, and just as with the ocean, it’s certain to remain a constant. Eager to see what the next wave brings. Count me at the water’s edge!

Well, if that’s the heavy, this must be the brother …

Off we went in search of new adventure at the shore. An early morning rise with hours ahead of us, we were fueled with full breakfast tummies and the occasional nap. On the road, I’m always sure to bring any number of items for entertainment only to find myself glued to the blur of the passersby, intent on not missing a thing, even if that means yet another mile of seemingly unchanged terrain.

Hark! A moment of sun broke through on that particularly murky mid morning! Find it rather foolish and futile to try to capture the immensity of the sky and all its glory. Sunset images are a dime a dozen and always better in real time, something best left to the mind’s remembrance. But, to each their own. Still, you’ll find me doing so perhaps once or twice a year. You can almost hear the Simpsons theme playing as the clouds part and roll away, yes?

Sun Rays Breaking Through Clouds

We arrive. Headed out onto the beach via vehicle! Promptly, we were stuck. And that’s all I have to say about that.

Long Beach has one of the more impressive boardwalks around complete with a large sculpture of whale bones, the vertebrae of particular beauty. The curvature and intricacy, lovely! Out on the sand, horseplay ensued with a little coaxing. There! It’s a bird, it’s a plane! Wait, it’s just Shane. Superman, without a tan. Meanwhile, Aaron cowers below.

Shane Leaping Over Aaron

Found a few sturdy sticks and with a large palette of sand, a little self expression followed. Aaron’s renderings of choice? A British flag, for one. As he neared completion, a small troop of five little girls marched by seemingly out of nowhere, following an older gentleman who called out, “What are you doin’?” to which Aaron promptly replied, “Recolonizing.” Having forgotten his belt for pants that fit a size too big, we all received “the plumber” as he continually kneeled and bent in completion of the piece. Five little marching girls included. Oh, the trauma!

In other artistic pursuits, he continued on with a replica to scale (I kid) of the solar system followed with the Sinatrian instruction to “fly me to the moon.” We did not.

I cannot say how thrilled I was to not have trampled on this little guy while frolicking about! Can you imagine? Fish guts, fish guts, roly-poly fish guts! Pass the tartar. On by.

Little Dead Fish On Beach

Neon Sign Reading Antiques

Once in town, we found ourselves at Marsh’s Free Museum, basically a knick-knackery store with a dual purpose of housing oddities and wonders galore! Rhyming, what timing, a poet, yep, I know it … Someone greets me at the door. It’s a regular flashback, it is! No separating safety glass this time. Thank goodness for stuffing.

Polar Paw

Next up, meet the girls. They’ve been waitin’ around a while now, it seems.

Skeleton Dolls

Off in a cramped secluded section of the store, right above my head no less, sat this fella. A blurry photo? Yep, because I rarely use a flash, and because I flat out refused to step even an inch closer in steadying the camera, despite his dapper appearance. Held the camera high above my head, not at all convinced he wouldn’t introduce himself at any moment, and snapped a shot, turning on my heel to beat a hasty retreat back to the player piano (!). Hey, I’d just rewatched Magic, and could still dredge up a creepy memory, or two, from What a Dummy.

Ventriloquist Dummy

On the way outta town, we stopped to worship at the house of Chico’s, where the pizza is heavenly. Sore Thumb! That’s the name of the pizza. Big, floppy and foldable, as it should be, keep that stuffed casserole-esque “pizza” that masqerades as the real deal far and away, thank you, and an extra side of grease, please, while you’re at it. ♦

Chicos Sore Thumb Pizza

XLII Quote, Images ‘n’ Clip of the Day

“Mirabelle Buttersfield moves from Vermont hoping to begin her life. And now she is stranded in the vast openness of L.A. She keeps working to make connections, but the pile of near misses is starting to overwhelm her. What Mirabelle needs is an omniscient voice to illuminate and spotlight her and to inform everyone that this one has value, this one standing behind the counter in the glove department and to find her counterpart and bring him to her.” -Shop Girl

• • • • • • •

… connection … near misses … needs … illuminate … value … this one … counterpart …


Yellow Road Lines

Ronald McDonald, my sweet bum. Baby It! A Pennywise in training.

The Right Time For Pie

Hubcaps. Lost another one! A handful of days bearing a substantial amount of snow (at long last, and yet, still not enough!) led up to the Christmas holiday this past year, and as Shane’s car was down for the count and my sister found snow driving kinda dicey, I gladly took on the role of chauffeur. Love it, I do, think it must be the sense of accomplishment, though, trivial, that comes in succeeding where others fear to tread. Say nothing of elevating such a mundane task as that of a commute to outright adventure! To and fro, we blazed one path and another from this workplace to that, that home to this, and back again. Christmas Eve evening, the three of us piled into my little red car and headed out to our cousin Chris’s homestead out in the bona fide boonies. Prior to leaving, Chris had called with news that the roads were horribly unmanagable, and that if we’d instead drive out to a nearbyish community center, he’d be sure to fetch us upon a call announcing our arrival. But in relaying this news to Bean and Shane, we chose to forego Chris’s instruction and drive the full distance, seeing that the roads weren’t giving us anymore guff than they’d been all week.

Much grumbling issued from our vehicle as we slowed and rolled to an inevitable stop, all momentum lost.

So, having traveled as far as the paved road would take us, we turned off onto the dirt pathway, over hill and vale, onward to awaiting festivities. Immediately, a distinct difference could be felt in attempts to continue maneuvering the car. Something had happened to the snow. For several hours, a steady rain had fallen as the temperature teetered just on, or above, freezing. The snow, now waterlogged, was primo slush! When encountered on blacktop, easy-peasy, though, quickly learned, an altogether different beast off-road. We slid and skated our way through mounds of the ornery stuff soon approaching a mild hill. The plan, lay on the gas with even pressure to begin, so as not to spin out, gathering speed in the slight decline before the oncoming ascent. All was going accordingly until, until, headlights appeared at the top of that mild hill. Right smack in the middle of the flippin’ road, straddling both “lanes” sat a very stationary vehicle. Our options were clear: stop, collide or reside in a ditch. Much grumbling issued from our vehicle as we slowed and rolled to an inevitable stop, all momentum lost. They had the help of our incline as their decline, and we beckoned them on insistently with arms motioning from the car windows.

Finally they crept passed ever so slowly accompanied by a heavy dose of glowering cast in their general direction. Glad tidings of shared Christmas cheer were scarce, I’m sorry to say, as their taillights faded away in the distance. Back to it then, pedal to floor, reverse, flip, crank it, spank it, smack it on the bing-bong, all sincere tries this side of the Delta, and not a foot closer, were we! In fact, the car had worked its way ’round perpendicularly, now lounging across the road, precariously angled towards the roadside ditch, sure to block any and all future passersby. Drat!

Out we piled into the darkest of dark evenings for further assessment. Snow was caked, slush packed into every crevice of the undercarriage. With no nearby branches sturdy enough to act as a tool in removing all that evil and phone reception last available back near the afore mentioned community center, somebody was gonna have to trek the remaining distance to the cousin’s for assistance. A brief discussion later, and very nary a glance backward, Bean turned on her heel, flashlight in hand, and headed up and over that mild hill, the inky darkness all but swallowing her up. It soon occurred to Shane that he’d allowed his beloved to wander off alone into a night full of eerie sounds emanating from the surrounding woods chock full of furrily ferocious creatures (bears, oh my!) to a destination we all only vaguely knew the whereabouts of. Repeat this, he did, again and again, as we continued to rev, push, shove, scoop, and dig to no avail, though, within the half hour, a new set of headlights sat atop that mild hill. Chris! After formulating a plan of attack, for all our previously lengthy trouble, we made quick work of heading my car back the way in which it came. Parked it out near the paved road for easy exiting, Chris’s big boat of a car befitted with chains, the key to success in the entire endeavor.

Merry Christmas to me, got the chance to walk my talk: exercise humility in dealing with others.

Bean had completed her solo journey successfully arriving without (too much) difficulty to knock at the door. Apparently, we weren’t the first to attempt to drive out and find ourselves thoroughly stuck in ignoring the wise and knowing words of our dear cousin that day, as the assemblage of none-too-thrilled relatives’ faces could attest upon seeing and hearing of Bean’s lone arrival. Well then, what did this ill-timed caper end up resulting in? My first meal of the holidays: humble pie. Man, did I feel like a dirty rat. Okay, so I had a little backup in the form of Bean and Danke Schoen. All the same, filthy rat here. I’d like to tell myself that the reason for bypassing Chris’s cautionary words was in order to save him the hassle of having to temporarily bow out of the festivities of his own making, yet, the truth of the matter is, he encountered an uprising of pride. Mine. One of those emotions easily cloaked and then masqueraded as a sometimes more positive attribute. But at the root of it, I simply felt I knew better than he, acting as such, and in so doing, perpetuated the show of respect- lack thereof- I’ve seen befall him with others at times. A most accomplished and gentle-spirited soul, I believe that he sensed my sincerity in apologizing, naming pride as the culprit outright to him and then again to others repeatedly in a play to hopefully restore some of that respect. Merry Christmas to me, got the chance to walk my talk: exercise humility in dealing with others. Always a good thing!

The merry continued (after a good ringing out of soggy socks due to the slush invasion of my impractically pretty, red, red Mary Janes) with a helping of good n’ bloody prime rib, carols sung at Chris and wife Rachel’s nearby church- all reached in chained vehicles, the catchup-doing of rarely seen yet always loved relatives, and the bestowing of special guest status as the bedtime storyteller to their munchkins. Much later, in arriving back home, I discovered that a hubcap had run off once again, escaping into the night. That makes three for this little red car alone! Count it another visit to ineedahubcap.com

CHOOKA Tattoo City Women's Wellington Rain Boots

Come Christmas morning, opened my rockin’ new snow boots! Très necessary just the night before, I’ve only worn ’em a total of once since. Good! They’ll still feel brand-spankin’ … how many months again until a little more snow? ♦

Smitty’s Demise

Goodness gracious, me-oh-my! Let me tell you what has transpired going into this past weekend …

Last Thursday afternoon, I’m driving along up the road on the way back to work. This tremendous sound, an out-n-out ruckus, begins. Like a piggie-squeal. UUUUURRREEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!! I look over to my left at the Bronco next to me, thinking, “Sheesh, that poor vehicle has some issues!”

A few minutes later, I roll up to a red light. UUUUURRREEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!! It’s back! Look to my left again. Yeah, no Bronco. Look forward. POOF! Large grey puffs of smoke are billowing out from all sides of my hood. MY hood. Look to my right. People are staring aghast at me in my little car. I slowly slide the sunglasses on my forehead down to over my eyes. Must hide. The light turns green. No one in any lane moves. They hang back allowing my dying car to lead the pack one last time. Lead, little car, lead.

I managed to pull into the parking lot of where I work, still squealing, all the while. The car, not me. The day passes and then after work, I call my dad who lives nearby and let him know I’m gonna attempt to head over to his place where the car can rest in peace free from fear of being towed away until I can call to have it junked (Waaaaaaaaagh).

Upon turning the key, UUUUURRREEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!! Without a moment’s hesitation. I head out to the main road, only to find myself coming up on the rear of a black SUV, real quick! My brakes are ceasing up, the clutch is useless, it’s a total melt down! What to do?! Luckily, I veer off to my only out before impact and pull into an open spot in a large parking area. Call my dad to please come pick me up.

So, this means that SOMEONE, some nut, has stolen my beloved, though dead, little car.

It’s all about timing. You see, the week prior, plans were set in motion to purchase a new car. To be purchased and picked up Friday morning. Yeah, the very next morning! YAY! Big-time YAY. The next day, I’m on my way to work, and I pull into the lot where my little car had died just the evening before. Hhhmmm. No car. Double. Triple take. Once at work, Bean and my Dad call, as they often do, and I mention the car being gone. We detemine calling the towing company posted on signs outside is the first course of action. Thing is, there are no signs posted on the other side of the building in the lot where my little car died. All the same, I call only to be told “Nope, no record of a lightish, greenish, little car with a giant daisy on the hood!” So, this means that SOMEONE, some nut, has stolen my beloved, though dead, little car. Smitty. He was such a good little car. Now he’s probably been stripped and sanded, buffed, and redistributed as mere parts to only God knows where. Smitty lives on as a patchwork amongst many other little cars now. He always wanted to travel …

And so here I sit, smugly enjoying the last laugh with my brand NEW (used) little car. What to name him. Or her? ♦

Duck, Duck, GOOSE!

This morning, I was pulling out of a parking spot and was just about to pull forward and head out to the road when I hear this horrendous goose-honk-sound and look up just in time to see a goose belly flying low, barely skimming my windshield. A goose buzzed me in my little car! Glad I was in it, in fact. What if he’d come along just moments before I’d hopped in? Gotta say, he had really pretty (hmm, or her, perhaps? A gander?) belly feathers!

Happy April Fool’s Day! YAY! Such a fun day. I really hoped to foil someone’s desk at work this year, but nope, didn’t. Was reading up a bit on April foolery from years’ past and came across one of my favorite little stories. The one about the spaghetti trees …

Back in ’57, there was a British news show that broadcast a segment about a spaghetti harvest in Switzerland. The show’s highly respected anchor, discussed the details of the spaghetti crop while airing footage of a rural Swiss family pulling pasta off spaghetti trees and placing it into baskets.

“The spaghetti harvest here in Switzerland is not, of course, carried out on anything like the tremendous scale of the Italian industry,” The audience was told. “Many of you, I’m sure, will have seen pictures of the vast spaghetti plantations in the Po valley. For the Swiss, however, it tends to be more of a family affair. A reason why this may be a bumper year lies in the virtual disappearance of the spaghetti weevil, the tiny creature whose depradations have caused much concern in the past.”

The anchor continued, “The uniform length of the pasta is the result of many years of patient endeavor by past breeders who succeeded in producing the perfect spaghetti. The last two weeks of March are an anxious time for the spaghetti farmer. There’s always the chance of a late frost which, while not entirely ruining the crop, generally impairs the flavor and makes it difficult for him to obtain top prices in world markets.” He concluded with, “For those who love this dish, there’s nothing like real, home-grown spaghetti.”

The BBC received hundreds of calls from puzzled viewers. Did spaghetti really grow on trees? Others were eager to learn how they could grow their own spaghetti tree. The idea for the segment was dreamed up by one of the broadcast’s cameramen, who said the idea occurred to him when he remembered one of his teachers chiding him for being “so stupid he’d believe spaghetti grew on trees.”

So, there you have it. Spaghetti trees. I’m a pasta fiend! Wish they were for real, I’d own two.

Oh, yeah, and, BUMCRACK!

See, Shan, told ya I’d “bumcrack” the place out for ya! I miss yer pretty face on here. That’s okay, though, I’ll take seeing you in person anyday. ♦