Tuesday, 11 September 2012

In Memorium -- 9/11

"Tulipa Salmon Pink", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2012
I don't know if or when there will come a time when we here in North America will be able to think of the date 9/11 without remembering that awful day 11 years ago.  The images from that day are forever imprinted on the minds of the peoples of the U.S. and Canada and our young people are introduced to those images as soon as they are old enough to understand.

So, today, in memory of all that happened on that morning 11 years ago, I am just presenting some new drawings of single flowers that seem suitable to me for this occasion.

The first one, above, is of a salmon-pink tulip.  I drew these lovely tulips a year or so ago, but felt that the drawing was too "busy".  So, recently, I decided to try drawing just one tulip and see how that felt.  I find it very satisfying as the simplicity really enables the viewer to appreciate the lovely colours.

"Grape Hyacinth", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2012
  This drawing of a Grape Hyacinth represents to me the "humility" of this plant.  I know that plants don't really express virtues, but as people have always recognized, we tend to assign certain characteristics to plants.  And for me, the Grape Hyacinth exhibits a certain lowliness in its beauty.  This seemed, therefore, to be a good plant to include in this day of remembering.

"Ghost Orchid", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2012
The final drawing reveals a flower that in spite of its beauty is easily hidden, easily missed.  The Ghost Orchid sits on logs and branches, often surrounded by other leafy branches or plants, and its simple loveliness has to be searched for in order to be seen and appreciated.  In fact, sometimes you can be looking right at this flower and miss it entirely.

So these are the flowers that I have chosen to make up my "bouquet" on this day of remembrance.  These are the ones I would place at Ground Zero were I there.

"Sunset Stylized", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2012

Here is a recent drawing with which I would like to finish this section.  I call it simply "Sunset Stylized" -- not a very pretty name, but so far I haven't come up with a proper one!  It is the kind of picture that I feel goes well with the words of this ancient prayer: 
"May the souls of all the departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.  Amen." 



Well, this has been quite a time for sweet Braden as you will see from the following photographic evidence.  He faced one of the world's most powerful temptations and apparently has come through the experience safely.  I am very grateful to be able to say this and to show you exactly what happened.  I will, however, allow Braden to tell you about it in his own words...

"Well, I was just lazin' around, chewin' on Tigger's ear and kind of thinkin' about my next meal, when all of a sudden......

a hand reached out from nowhere holding something I had never seen before.  From deep within the collective unconscious, however, I heard the word "chocolate" and I knew somehow that this item before me contained many deep and delicious mysteries AND I was tempted..."

"I was facing a serious dilemma and felt that this was a significant moment in my life.  What to do? I asked myself, and suddenly, I heard a voice from above saying...

" 'Chocolate can lead you astray!  Beware of Chocolate' "  This is really getting weird, I thought.  At this point I decided to play it safe and so......

I went back to chewing on Tigger and waiting for mom to dish up my supper!  I think I made the right choice -- but I must admit there was something about the smell of that chocolate....."

So ends the story of Braden's first brush with a major temptation.  What does the future hold for our beloved boy?


"Are people finding out embarrassing
stuff about me again?"
 Well, I am grateful to report that I seem somehow to have won this round in the ongoing battle about Suki's food.  She appears to have accepted the fact that I am refusing to budge on the issue of her only eating gravy and leaving the rest of the food in her dish while asking for more gravy!  She seems to only be able to take so many days of being faced with dried-out cat food sitting in her dish.  It finally reached the point where she was willing to even eat that, she got so hungry. 

So, now, I can say with great pleasure that, most of the time, Suki is eating all of her food, not just the gravy!  Of course, I am not so naive to think that this battle is really over.  I will say that the current round seems to have ended and I am waiting for the next one to begin.

Otherwise, she has been reasonably well behaved.  At the moment she is waiting impatiently for me to stop using the computer and give her the food I have been promising her for the past 30 minutes.  I think I shall take a break and do that before Suki decides to start trying to give me a bath with that awful tongue of hers!

LATER:  I'm back and Suki is happily giving herself a bath now -- which is what she should be doing after cleaning up her food dish! 

Speaking of a happy cat, I have a photo below which shows an amazing scene.  I had company a couple of weekends ago -- I think I mentioned them to you -- a couple I had prepared for marriage about 6 years ago came for a visit with their two children.  Instead of hiding in the closet as she does when the cleaning lady comes, she heard the noise and came out to see what was going on.  The baby was fussing a bit but she ignored her and headed straight for the 5 year old.  He was thrilled and begin stroking Suki gently.  Suki was delighted and begin to purr loudly.  Here is photographic proof -- sadly there are no sound effects!

Suki enjoying being stroked by my young friend while baby sister looks at photographer!
As for me, I continue to do reasonably well. 

The biggest complaint has to do with my bike at the gym which has started having problems after 2 1/2 years. I find this rather aggravating as I can no longer measure my time/speed/pressure against the previous day as the measuring devices have stopped working properly.  I have gotten several of the fellows involved in trying to fix it.  Although the repairman has come in several times and thought he had it fixed, but it soon goes back to needing to be fixed again.  I have had to put up with numerous remarks about how I have been riding it too hard, going above the speed limit, etc.  but those comments have finally led them to start considering putting the bike "out to pasture" and bringing in a new one!  That is a solution of which I am totally in favour.  We'll see what actually gets done.  I will keep you informed.

I am expecting to have a quiet week as I have no doctors' appointments.  I do have to go to the lab tomorrow to have some blood work done, but nothing else.  The good news is that a dear friend may be meeting me for a visit on Wednesday -- we haven't been able to meet for over a month now and it will really be wonderful to see her again.  I also have two new book ideas and this week might be a good time to stop thinking about them and actually start working on one of them.  We'll see.  Once I get started I will tell you more about the projects.

As I come to the end of this posting, my thoughts return again to the anniversary we remember today.  May God protect us from the violence of others and soften our hearts so that we do no violence to anyone.  May the souls of all those who died on that fateful day rest in peace -- I leave their judgement to God alone.  Finally I pray: 
"Let there be peace on earth, my God, and let it begin with me." 

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