End of Summer Vacation
Wednesday last week (September 5th, that is) marked the first day of school for Willow. She was extremely excited to be starting. In fact, she had picked out an outfit for the first day of school more than a month ago–or rather, she swapped out ideas for an outfit several times. It seemed like she couldn’t make up her mind. And then, Wednesday morning she threw on some stuff that I had never even seen as potential first day candidates. She’s too funny.
I figured after I dropped off Willow, I would go to the gym and then put in a long walking day, making sure I walked over a half marathon again. As I left the school, I saw some of the following:
I also saw a dead crow. I didn’t photograph it, figuring you probably wouldn’t want to see. It was rather creepy, because it looked like it didn’t have a head. But that was because the head was twisted so far back that it was sort of under the body. I’m guessing the bird must have flown into a vehicle as it drove by and broke it’s neck. I’ve seen that happen to a seagull once, and it wasn’t pretty.
At the time, I thought seeing the crow was a weird omen, since crows have long been the harbinger of bad news or death in folklore. But I put the thought out of my mind and kept walking.
Out at Montavilla Community Center, the pool sat quiet and empty.
I ducked into Fred Meyer for some more moleskin for my feet and happened to spot the following neat book. If anybody is feeling flush and wants to get me one, I wouldn’t complain. I’m kind of a geek, what can I say?
In the neighborhood out between SE Foster and SE Holgate, I walked and came across some industrial looking building with a long stretch of graffiti art. I thought it quite beautiful, but unfortunately, I can never seem to decipher the writing. Sometimes I wonder if what I think is supposed to be text is even text at all…
This wasn’t the end of the art immersion on my walk. The next grouping was kind of creepy, though. A bunch of masks rested along the edges of somebody’s yard. The first mask I found was especially eerie. Note the mouth and nostril area, in particular.
I noticed in this neighborhood there were a lot of these pesticide free signs. I wonder how common that is in other cities? Or is Portland particularly crunchy that way? I think it’s kind of cool.
The dead crow wasn’t my first brush with death along my route. I also came across a dead squirrel, all bloatey and covered with flies. It wasn’t too far from the following house. This house had no traditional front steps, but it did have a side door. How many people do you know who mow their front steps?
The following garage was on a house off of SE Powell Blvd. I really liked the painting.
In keeping with the death and dying theme, this poor skeletal kitty came over to me for some lovin’. I think she was hoping I would give her some food. She was outside with about seven other cats. They all looked as skeletal as she did. It ticks me off when owners don’t take care of their cats, let them run wild and allow them to produce litters. She was the only one to allow me near her–the rest were too skittish.
While I was walking by this one church, I heard somebody start playing their trumpet. I don’t think the player was in the church, but in a house nearby. I wasn’t sure which one. I didn’t much care though. I listened to the hauntingly melancholic tune, and it reminded me very much of a lonely funeral dirge. It was a lovely way to draw my walk to a close. The only thing that was even better was that not far away, I found a guy watering his plants. He had one that was a beautiful dark purple, so purple it was almost black. I asked him the name of the plant, and he said it was a black hollyhock. He said he had cut it back many times, and it just kept growing and growing. I told him I loved the plant for the color, and now that I knew the name of it, I liked it even better, since my name is Holly. He plucked off couple of seed pod thingies and gave them to me.
So the trumpet, the closure of the pool, the dead and dying critters–the death theme seemed like it was reminding me that summer is about over. Summer vacation is officially dead. But it’s all part of the cycle. Things grow, new things are born, and summer will come again.
After all this, I decided to hang out at Safeway for a bit in their deli area and do some drawing.
After I finished drawing this, it was pretty late, so I bussed the rest of the way home. I ended up walking 13.21 miles Wednesday!
*If you guessed Halle Berry, I’m ecstatic. That means I did an okay job.