Tuesday, September 30, 2014

advance, retreat



For someone who doesn't like to leave home, I've been doing so a lot. Friday, I made a quick trip with a full car, to Brooklyn. The laundromat near my son's apartment is also a pinball parlor. The city is a wonderland of the unique and eclectic, and I savor it until I reach the point where I am saturated.



Then home to cats and books 
 and glorious flowers from Bow Street. 




Monday, September 22, 2014

back to Provincetown











Four days of harbor, bay and ocean; sunrises and sunsets, fishing boats, cottages and art galleries. I took a painting workshop with Christie Scheele at the Provincetown Art Museum. Christie's paintings are stripped down, luminous landscapes. I've long admired her work and felt I could learn a lot from her, and I did. After painting steadily for a year, noodling (phaffing, Amanda?) around with different styles, I may be getting to a place of my own in my paintings. Will post more on this in the Orchards in Space blog…


Summer is truly winding down. I look forward to some autumn weekends in the country and another trip to Brooklyn. For once I am not dreading winter, am looking past my usual stacks of books (a/k/a safety net) and into burrowing into my studio and painting. I hope this time of transition is going well for you too.

xo,
Jen

More Provincetown posts:






Sunday, September 14, 2014

the roses of Kew

My favorite places at Kew Gardens were the rose gardens 
and the lily pond (saved for another day)

 I arrived at the gardens early and was the only person among the roses.
They made me crazy with happiness.

 They weren't tended to. Their entire life cycles were on view everywhere I looked.
I have no idea why, as other gardens were traditionally, immaculately snipped and shaped.
Of course I loved it this way.

 This was my favorite color.

 And now, of course, I want to grow roses.


 I have a couple of sweet and easy floribunda, 
but none of the extravagant colors, shapes, or fragrances.





Wednesday, September 10, 2014

a city weekend








Transitions. Two intense days in Brooklyn, last week, helping 
my youngest finalize his apartment search.
We ate Polish food (and Brazilian and donuts and pizza) walked along the East River,
 investigated the neighborhood (Greenpoint) hung out with my oldest, who also lives in Brooklyn,
walked to Williamsburg, drank beer (well, they did) ate ice cream, and
found a small but charming fourth floor walkup on a street where on summer evenings
the neighbors set up their card tables on the sidewalk and play dominos.

Friends, why was I thinking two blogs was a good idea?
(especially when I'm on Instagram regularly)
Because I'm a Gemini? 
Anyway…
Maybe I should just put it all here. 
Even though I'm more of an Orchards in Space person these days
than a Country Weekend person, this is home for me, in the blog world.
And if I write about some crazy thing that doesn't interest you, you can just skip on past it.
I'll do something with the other space--I'm sure inspiration will come to me,
but I'm not going to divide myself up between here and there…
I am changing to a fresher template. Bear with me, please.
(and if you have any problems with it, leave a note in the comments
or email me: jen (at) country weekend [dot} net

Monday, September 1, 2014

a Catskills weekend

I got to the country late Thursday night, and Friday morning went to Russell's for an egg sandwich.
The eggs are so fresh and flavorful that I don't add cheese or anything else. At Russell's weekenders mix easily with locals--old school farmers and Brooklyn stylist/makers can all agree on a good breakfast sandwich.

 Then I wandered through tiny downtown Bovina to take some pictures. This old general store is for sale, and somehow I discovered that the door was unlocked, so I went in and wandered around. Unfortunately I accidentally deleted most of my pictures, but it is such a cool place, filled with soul and character. It's for sale with an old farmhouse and 8 acres.

Pressed tin ceilings.

 Three or four rooms on each floor.


Old ledgers.

 There are a lot of pictures on the real estate listing here. Her exterior pictures are good, but her interior pictures don't begin to capture the charm of this place. It looks like the farmhouse has been woefully updated. Upstate NY is filled with charming old farmhouses at really reasonable prices. (If you're used to Boston, NY, SF prices). Bovina's only three hours from NYC. I'll never open a store again, but I was pretty excited for a while there, as I wandered around.





 We bought our house in the woods twelve years ago, and every time I go there I feel a sense of joy, freshness, clarity, peace. I get deep into nature, but also enjoy the simple pleasures  that abound in the eclectic rural life of the Catskills.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

London bits & bobs

Five days in London. Glorious weather--low 70's, just a bit of rain, so I spent a lot of time outside.
The river path along the Thames is a beautiful way to see the city. (Thanks to Petra for the suggestion.)

Riding the bus is another great way to view the city.
This is the only cat I saw in London.

English English.
Boot sales, wellies, lorries, elevenses, whip rounds
and summer tidys.

It seems a gentler language than American English 
where boots are trunks and wellies are boots.

Another peek at the glorious flower market.

The amazing food markets. I went to the Borough Market twice in five days.
I wish I could have taken some of these home to my sausage loving sons.

Kew Gardens. Deserves a post of its own.
(prepare for an abundance of roses and water lilies)

 Street art, East End.

Really my favorite thing to do in a city is walk.
See the various neighborhoods, watch the people,
look for the small things that give a place character.

Browsing the used books stores on Charing Cross.
(Here, gifts for the son who loves classic mysteries
and the one who loves language and politics.)

A Turner sky

and a Turner painting, at the fantastic Tate Modern,
which also deserves its own post
(maybe on the other blog).

Best sign ever.






Tuesday, August 19, 2014

London flower market

I slipped off for a long weekend in London.
The Columbia Road Flower Market stole my heart.

A narrow charming street in London's East End
packed with flowers.



The call of "Two for a fiver" and "Three for a tenner"
echoing down the street

                                                        like a choir in a cathedral of flowers.


I agonized over what to buy, to brighten my hotel room,
and settled on purple stock, yellow freesias, and thistles.
Three for a tenner.

Great people watching too.
The sight of all those flowers made me giddy, 
but watching the interactions, choices, conversations,
listening to the wonderful range of accents
made it that much better.

 One day I'd like to tour England's gardens, flowers shop and markets.

Is it surprising that in a city of great historic sights and museums
one of my favorite things is the flower market?
What sorts of thing light you up when you travel?