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Poem for Sunday, Skating, Carcassonne Inquisition Museum [Feb. 25th, 2018|12:01 am]
February )

It rained all day Saturday, quite hard at times, so all plans to go walk in gardens or around the National Mall got postponed. Still, it was a Pokemon Go Community Day, which in this case meant that there were Dratini all over the place including very rare shiny ones. So I made Paul take me to the park and then the mall so I could catch some, and now I have two green Dragonites and a few pink Dratini and a very wet hooded sweatshirt.

That was about all the excitement apart from being happy about the U.S. curling gold medal. NBC covered the figure skating exhibition so atrociously that we ended up watching it in real time using the Roku (blissfully free of commentary, and showing the skaters goofing off on the ice afterward so we got to see who Evgenia Medvedeva took selfies with and how Eric Radford pretended to be Yuzuru Hanyu's pairs partner and it was gloriously Yuri on Ice).

All week Facebook has been showing me "On This Day" photos from our trip to Provence last year, which made me nostalgic and also reminded me that I never posted these photos from Carcassonne's Musée de l'Inquisition, which sadly does not allow pictures inside the museum of things like the models of the Cathar castles destroyed in the Albigensian crusades but does allow pictures of the outside instruments of torture:

17crcs19
The Inquisition )
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Poem for Saturday and Thor Viewing Party [Feb. 24th, 2018|12:41 am]
Winter Solitude )

Quickie, have been alternately watching the Olympics (skiing and speed skating mostly) around Vudu's Thor: Ragnarok viewing party, which had trivia, contests, and Tessa Thompson answering questions. It was chilly and rainy, but I had a fairly nice day around chores -- walked in the neighborhood to see daffodil shoots coming up, saw bunnies and squirrels, went briefly to the park, then had dinner with my parents. Here are goofy fannish pics I posted for the viewing party:

18vudut1
Thor and Loki )
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Poem for Friday and Washingtonian February [Feb. 23rd, 2018|12:28 am]
Virginia Street )

February reasserted itself on Thursday, though it was chilly and drizzly rather than truly cold. I went out early, walked in the park, made a couple of stops, then came home for lunch and work. My mother stopped by with a present -- she found Paul's and my ketubah, the Jewish marriage contract, when she was cleaning out a closet down the basement and got it framed for us, so now it is hanging in our living room.

After catching up on the end of the US women's hockey triumph, for which we were too tired to stay awake, we have spent this evening watching the women's skating long program. I'm sorry the US did not send Ashley Wagner (she wouldn't have medaled but I always love watching her) and I prefer Medvedeva to Zagitova stylistically, but all the top women were terrific. From Washingtonian Lake in Wednesday's heat:

18fbtrt3
Turtles All The Way Down )
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Placeholder for Thursday [Feb. 22nd, 2018|01:20 am]
Glorious 80 degree day, I had lunch with Kay at Tara Thai then walked around the lake, after dinner Adam stopped by to pick up his debit card and we Skyped with Daniel and now it's after 1 a.m. but the US women are tied with Canada in hockey so we are still up watching! More tomorrow!

18meadfb
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Poem for Wednesday and First Flowers [Feb. 21st, 2018|12:37 am]
Next Time Ask More Questions )

It was nearly 80 degrees on Tuesday so after a morning of chores and laundry, I spent most of it outdoors, walking in both the sports areas and the play areas of Cabin John Park and around the neighborhood. I did things like sweeping the deck just as an excuse to be outside. I don't know whether it's related, but we had an unexpected visit from a red tabby who refused to leave our deck once he realized that we had cats inside, which ultimately led to me summoning our catsitter Rose for help getting him into a carrier since she was pretty sure she knew where he lived. That was about all the excitement apart from the women's short program, where I'm sorry the Americans didn't skate their best but the Russians, Japanese, and Canadians were a joy to watch. Some lovely spring sights from the park:

18croc1
In the Park )
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Poem for Tuesday, Black Panther, What We Do in the Shadows [Feb. 20th, 2018|12:11 am]
Ice )

I had a lovely President's Day -- lunch at Cava with Paul and Cheryl, then Black Panther with them plus Karen, Jim, and Teresa at Arclight (we all thought it was wonderful, both within the MCU and as an action movie with a political perspective). Then Paul, Cheryl, and I came home and watched What We Do in the Shadows, which none of us had seen before, and howled through the whole thing, since it is both hilarious and very clever.

After Cheryl went home, I spent the evening yelling at the TV about NBC's ice dance coverage, which was both erratic and biased, but Virtue and Moir defeated the (now I can say it) overrated French team and the Shibutanis skated beautifully though I feel badly that Hubbell and Donohue, whom I really like, were not on top of their game. It's late so more tomorrow; here's a picture of my lazy cats and of me and Delta with superheroes!

18pnthr2
Panthers )
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Lyrics for Monday and Kennedy Center Chess [Feb. 19th, 2018|12:24 am]
Anthem )

I spent a delightful Sunday with Paul, Cheryl, and our friend Robert, who came over in the morning for brunch before we all went downtown to see Chess at the Kennedy Center with Ramin Karimloo, Raúl Esparza (singing with a sore throat), and the phenomenal Karen Olivo in the difficult role of Florence, which gets reworked slightly every time the show gets revived (is it about the love story? is it about her past and her father? is it about being used as a pawn?) but gets the showstopper songs "Nobody's Side" and "I Know Him So Well"; we had heard Karimloo do "Anthem" in concert so we knew that would be wonderful but Esparza's "Pity the Child" may be the best thing in the show.

We went out on the riverside terrace behind the grand foyer and visited the gift shops before we drove back into Maryland (spot the three deer on the hillside spotted from the Clara Barton Parkway in the photos below) to have dinner at the Silver Diner before the Virginia residents departed to drive back. I have spent the evening watching the ice dance short program; I'm kind of pulling for Virtue and Moir just because I love how they move on the ice, though I also really like all three American teams; I'm not quite as much in love with the French pair as Tanith White is, but they do pretty lifts and no one should lose because of a costume malfunction, so we'll see what happens tomorrow night.

18kncnc5
Downtown Shows )
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Poem for Sunday and Lunar New Year [Feb. 18th, 2018|12:12 am]
Year of the Dog )

We went early Saturday to Lakeforest Mall for the annual Lunar New Year celebration, which kicked off with a dragon dance, a lion dance, and speeches from many politicians from the Governor of Maryland to the county executive and local delegates. We watched some of the martial arts and folk dancing and we visited the art show before doing a bit of shopping in the mall and having lunch at the House of Kabob, which serves food from India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh as well as kabobs, so I got to have chana masala and pakora.

17chny1
Year of the Dog )


It had started to snow by the time we left the mall and went to Strathmore, which had two small but enjoyable art exhibits -- one on impressions of Shakespeare and Poe by local artists, the other sacred geometry shapes in glitter by Bethesda's Jordann Wine. We had to stop at Giant for a couple of necessities and it was really snowing by the time we left, so after a quick stop to catch a Castform in its snowy shape, we have spent the evening indoors, eating sandwiches for dinner because we were full from lunch and watching the Olympics!
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Poem for Saturday and Brookside Heron [Feb. 17th, 2018|12:40 am]
Lightning Haiku )

I started the Year of the Dog with a Pokemon raid at the nearby Buddhist Temple, which none of us attending stopped to think might be mobbed with celebrants, which it was. The rest of my day was unexciting, apart from seeing snowdrops blooming and the first crocuses coming through in my neighborhood, until dinnertime, when we went with Maddy to my parents' house.

Now we are watching the end of the phenomenal men's free skate at the Olympics, in which I was rooting for Chen to come back but not to medal because that would have required either Hanyu, Uno, or Fernandez to fall apart and I love all of them (and they were wonderful). I was sorting photos earlier today and found these of a green heron at Brookside in the summer:

16bkher4
By the Lake )
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Poem for Friday and Musée des Docks Romains [Feb. 16th, 2018|12:15 am]
Bath )

It was nearly 70 degrees here on Thursday! Which is a really lovely break in February! I needed to stop in Target so I went to the one in Gaithersburg so I could walk around the lake (there were lots of happy geese and ducks, including hooded mergansers, which are rare there). We had a few minutes of rain and a hint of a rainbow, then nice warm winds all afternoon into evening!

We're watching the men's skating short program, which has been somewhat uneven in terms of the skating and coverage, but it's much happier than the news and the bullshit of prayers instead of gun legislation. I am also cranky because a year ago today, Paul and I were here at Marseille's Musée des Docks Romains, and I really want to go back and do that whole trip again!

17mrsl25
Roman Ruins )
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