Monday, June 28, 2021

Dear Meanderings and Muses subscribers,

 Google has decided to eliminate its FeedBurner feature (Boo, Google!) which means you will no longer be receiving Meanderings and Muses in your email boxes.  I think this will be happening during July.

I appreciate each and every one of you and I hope you'll still pop in to see whatever it is I might be rambling about, be it Annabelle, Donald, Paris, politics, the beach (going soon!), poetry or pretty pictures. Peonies or pearls.  Concerts, clothes, nail color or motorcycles. Cameras and coffee.  Rants, recipes, what I'm reading, what I'm writing.  The good stuff, the bad stuff.  Adventures and just plain ol' daily living.

Meanderings and Muses has been around since 2008 and we've covered a lot of topics.  Some have been important, some have been pure silliness.  Type a word or a name into that little search box at the top left corner of the blog and chances are fairly good you'll find something here that I, or a guest, had to say about it.  

So.  Just 'cause you won't find me in your in-box for much longer, I'll still be here, and I hope you will be too.


Monday, June 21, 2021

There was no finer man than Joe Maron

A Good Man by James Whitcomb Riley


A good man never dies--
In worthy deed and prayer
And helpful hands, and honest eyes,
If smiles or tears be there:
Who lives for you and me--
Lives for the world he tries
To help--he lives eternally.
A good man never dies.


Who lives to bravely take
His share of toil and stress,
And, for his weaker fellows' sake,
Makes every burden less,--
He may, at last, seem worn--
Lie fallen--hands and eyes
Folded--yet, though we mourn and mourn,
A good man never dies.

I will miss you, Joe Maron.

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Don Barley has an adventure. Kaye Barley stays home.

Don Barley wrote: 

"I had decided to take up on the 2021 "Carolina Challenge". The challenge was to visit 16 specific Harley Davidson stores across the Carolina's. I planned a route and saw a four to five day window of good weather. A form was filled out at Crossroads Harley last Sat. afternoon. The is to receive a dealership stamp at each location on the form. Planned the trip Sun. and Mon. Ms. Kaye Alan reluctantly agreed to the adventure. I left out Tues. morn about 7. I already had gotten the first stamp at Wilkesboro when the form was filled. Rode past the first location. The rest of the first day was stopping at High Point, Danville Va., Raleigh, Goldsboro, and Greenville stores. I rode on to Myrtle Beach and made it before dark. It was 600+ miles. Next morn got stamps at the two Myrtle Beach stores. Then it was to Charleston, Summerville, Columbia, Irmo, and Augusta. There was a few hours of light, so off to Anderson. The two hour trip was more like three and half. I rode about 40 min. after dark much to Ms. Kaye's displeasure. Got a room in Anderson and a stamp the next morn. Turned to the Charlotte store and after  I stopped and visited friends and stayed much to long talking. Having cut my time close I headed to the Concord store. I made it with 10 minutes before closing. I received the last stamp and was told someone had completed their form with all stamps two days earlier. This is not a timed challenge. The idea is to visit every place and to get high mileage in age groups for a chance at a drawing. The lottery has better odds. So after getting the last stamp I headed for Boone. I made it home just before dark. I managed to cover 1430 miles in about 60 hours. I'm proud to have made this adventure safely, without injuries, or damages. But most of all, I am proud of my wife for tolerating and trying to understand me. I am so damn lucky to be with someone who cares. "

Spending time with old and dear friends, Joe and Sharon Griffin, was a highlight of this trip.

Sharon and I are best buddies from waaay back in our high school days.

If there was trouble to be found, we found it.

She married the nicest guy she ever dated.  

And what did I do while while Donald was out having himself a big ol time?

Mostly I was happy that he took the time to call me from each stop to let me know he was okay.  I knew when he got his beloved bike there would be adventures of this sort.  No, it doesn't stop me from worrying, but I can't imagine being the kind of wife who would try to stop him from doing what he loves.  I did have an almost constant diet of ice cream, cookies and potato chips while he was gone.  😄 #lovinglifewithdonbarley

I spent a lot of time re-reading old Anne Rivers Siddons novels.  Not my two favorites, Peachtree Road and Downtown.  I have read those books so many times I have lost count.  I love them.  Both take place in Atlanta during the time I was living there; new to the city and to the south.  During a time of enormous change for Atlanta, for the South, the country, and for me.  They tell important stories that I feel are a part of who I am.

But I decided to re-read some of her other novels and enjoyed them immensely.  It had been so long that it was like reading them for the first time and I was happy to realize that the writing still affects and moves me.  

Anne Rivers Siddons is no longer with us, but she left a strong and enduring legacy.

When I wasn't reading I was going through boxes of stuff to price so I can cart them to our booth at Antiques on Howard.

And I played in my little studio.

While cleaning, clearing, and purging I found some wonderful old decorating books, including this one from my mom.

The photos of rooms from the '70s  are wonderful!

The furniture, the art, the decorating - all of it.

I haven't looked at these books in years.

And I've decided to repurpose them into collages.

I do know repurposing books offends some people, but I would rather see them used and enjoyed in some manner rather than sitting on a shelf ignored, unloved, and attracting silverfish.

AND, I found some delightful old magazines that combined with the decorating books will hopefully become some fun collages.

Here's my first effort.

I had so much fun doing this.

We'll just see where it goes.

In the meantime, Annabelle and I are tickled pink to have Don Barley home.  💕 

Life is Good

Monday, June 14, 2021

Dipping our toes into the pool of re-entry

Dear friends from my hometown of Cambridge, Maryland were vacationing here in The High Country last week.

Debby and Gordon Hill.

We were in high school together and have stayed close.

Their visit presented us with the challenge/opportunity to get out and see a little bit of our world.

It felt a little weird, truth be told.

And not entirely comfortable.  But not entirely uncomfortable.

Downtown Boone was a mixed bag of masks in equal numbers, maybe more people without than with, but not by a huge margin.

I only went into one shop, Antiques on Howard, and was happy to see some empty spots on the shelves in our booth.  Time to re-stock!  Because I have darted in to do this re-stocking thing a couple of times during the past year and a half, I felt pretty comfortable, but not comfortable enough to hang around and shop.  Just peek and leave.

We had brunch at my favorite Downtown Boone restaurant, Melanie's, and ate outside.   And felt perfectly at ease enjoying time with dear friends along with some delicious Eggs Benedict. 

Time with friends and eating out - those are things I've been missing most.

And while happy to have made this first little step, I can say that Donald and I are in agreement that we are not ready for re-entry in a big way.

And we'll continue keeping our masks close at hand.

But oh my goodness it was good to see good friends!

It was not very welcoming of The Town of Boone to give us, and Gordon and Debby, parking tickets, but that's another story for another day other than to say what a way to leave our visitors with a bad taste in their mouth after spending not a small amount of money while shopping here.  

Boo, Boone.