Monday, August 17, 2015


It was a hot and humid day, but we were determined to give ourselves the present of a day with no dishes.  I'm tired of dishes.  Generally, I am not.  It is a piece of my overall being tired of so many things these days.

The sugar numbers and the undiagnosed nose smell put me off my adventurous mood.

However, I managed to eat right. My sugar numbers are off the chart, but I know what I know.

We started by finding the cork screw trail not far from home.  It was too wet for our shoes, but it will be a fine trail, all covered in a woodsy canopy so it will stay cool.  It is a new addition to hiking opportunities, privately owned but accessible.


Then we went up beyond Stephentown and stopped for breakfast at a great little diner all decorated for the West with Indians and cowboys.  It was a bright and good place.  The coffee was good.  I had a burrito.  Elizabeth had a Portobello and egg on English and perhaps I'll try that next time and just skip the muffin. 

This diner was located in a plaza and along side the plaza was a fine little flea market.  We walked around and enjoyed some of the old things.   There were some dollar deals.  I bought a fine little brass like dust bin and brush and a flexible spatula like the ones I bought from Sherry's mom.  I had two of those and one just split in half. 
This one had a fine and untarnished blade but the black handle had been cracked a bit.  When I got home a few minutes of grinding the handle down, smoothing it, and spraying on a coat of black paint did the trick.  I'll love this!

It got too hot and we started toward  the Norman Rockwell Museum

It was $17, a good bit I think.  And it was crowded.  Still, it was fine to see all the painting and other bits there.  A cartoonist was also featured, but I was not so thrilled with that display.

Favorites included:

In Rockwell's time there was a great fear that feminism might take over.  Here a young fellow suffers the barbs of baseball buddies because he is doing child care that day.

Of course, I'd like this one.  It is a fisherman's dream.

Here is a fine depiction of jeering baseball fans.
A baseball classic from America's most beloved folk artist! Entitled "The Dugout", this famous piece was originally published as the cover art for the September 4, 1948 issue of the Saturday Evening Post, and perfectly captures the feeling of being a losing road team in hostile territory. As a franchise on the decline in the late 1940s, the Chicago Cubs were the perfect target for Rockwell's inspired art - little did he know, the Cubs would feel little but dejection for the rest of the 20th century. Forget the curse of the Billygoat...the Cubs may be a victim of Rockwell's hex! 

This is quite a photo of a hero, the way we all wanted to be in the scouts.  Here one carries a girl and her cat to a rowboat as her house is destroyed by the 1938 hurricane.
I did encounter quite a bit of Rockwell as a boy because I always had a subscription to Boy's LIfe and he did the covers to that oversized magazine.  I should have saved all of them   I remember Dick Bull also loved the magazine although he never because a scout.  He was always showing me some article, especially those that had to do with building some camping trick. 
I liked the quilt.

Rockwell had a whole series of Cousin Reginald pieces in which the nerdy guy outsmarts the popular and good looking boy.  Fun.

This Post cover was represented as depicting the process of his work.  First he had some Arlington neighbors pose for a photograph and then he used them in the painting.  He paid $5 a sitting and always insisted that an artist should pay the models something as the modeling was much improved.



There was a lecture, but we did not attend but used that time to see the works with less competition from others.  I did pick up that Rockwell was so pale that as a baby he was called "Snow in the Face" 


Here a young fellow discovers Santa's outfit in a bottom drawer and begins to get the idea.

From this painiting I learned the word, doorkijkje,

Santa's outfit It was particularly important to me because it is exactly the sort of artistic experience I have from my bed, looking out the door at all the many angles in the kitchen and beyond.

We took a bit of a rest on the porch.  It was fairy cool there.  I fell asleep for a bit.

Then we poked around Great Barrington, but it was too hot to be of much comfort.  I heard some fine outdoor music playing the songs I love and doing it quite well.  Elizabeth poked in shops and ended up buying a dress.  I added my Veterans status to get an extra 10% off and had a talk with one of the owners who had been in the Navy.

I went into a gallery

and that might have been interesting except they featured  and this stuff was just terrible.  Much of it was women with only partial faces.  I hated all of it.  It was as if someone one time sloshed and ruined a nice portrait and then decided that the error might be a great artistic technique.  But what do I know.

It was Tax Free weekend in Mass. so we decided to eat a bit out of town to avoid the crowds.  We went to Agean Breeze

for a fine dinner.  Elizabeth had baby lamb chops and I had sardines.  Both came with a greek salad and it was a great meal.  I skipped wine.  The sardines were perfect.  I loved this dish in Portugal and this was very similar.  I also would eat them grilled at the fiestas in Spain, but those were not cleaned and we had to eat around the stomach.  They are a mackerel like fish only much sweeter and blended well with the fine salads.  Many more dishes were on the menu.  I saw wraps but I was not taken with those.  We'll be back;  however, I'll probably have sardines again.

So, it was a fine day.  We had fun.  We had time together and processed a few things. A perfect celebration.

71st Birthday visit

NOTE:  At the end of this post it seems sometimes to repeat itself.  I can't quite figure how to get that out of the post.  My intentio...