A Sunny Morning After a Rainy Night is Best…

… for photographing spider webs, and UD found a perfectly circular one at the top of her hill; but I felt too unsteady over the thick vines and slippery limbs to get close enough for a good shot. Best I could do.

Toy boats at the Hagerstown City Park.
A modern/Asian fountain that’s got UD‘s name all over it. At the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts.

Both places from UD‘s outing today — a very beautiful day.

Bridge Over the River Patapsco

From our walk today at Patapsco State Park.

Dominated by the Thrush
Very loud evening birdsong, chez UD.
UD’s been gazing with interest at…

… this photo in the New York Times, part of an ad campaign for Parachute, an upscale bedding company. (There’s a Parachute store a thirteen-minute walk from La Kid’s trendy DC apartment.) What strikes me is the dirt on the bedroom floor, and on the pants of the person troweling.

In the bedroom. Troweling in the bedroom.

Other elements of the image – washed-out whites, distressed terracottas, and palely flowering plants – are familiar from the hyper-minimalist, organic design world, and UD herself is a paid-up member of that world… Often, when UD visits her neighbors’ houses, she thinks They put everything in. I take everything out


Mr UD is fond of this guy… something of a crackpot … named Bede Griffiths, who just kept getting more and more and more ascetic in his spiritual life, and for sure that ain’t me. Like only wearing a loincloth and sleeping under the stars. But I recognize myself, somewhat, in this pallid pictorial. Remember that Mr UD’s father was a noted Corbusierian, so there’s that influence in our (midcentury) house, and its simple pollinator gardens/unrefined forests, as well. We’re definitely on the spectrum.

Anyway, there’s above all the devil-may-care, so-what-if-I’m wearing-white-slacks thing to note in this image. I get the whole bringing the garden indoors trend, but wow. Does this woman not have a cat/dog to gambol in the loam and track it all over the house? Or am I supposed to be too cool to worry about that? Is it bourgeois to worry about that? Croyez-moi, I don’t care when stuff in the house gets dirty and dog-haired, etc.; but I’m thinking I draw the line at potting plants on my bedroom floor.

Flashy, splashy, morning sunlight on…

UD‘s spring garden.

UD’s Third Spring Poem

The greening of the evening 
The cold flat light of night 

And the mesmerizing 
Tritone thrush in the honeysuckle 

Thrill me, and hush me. 

Later, sitting in a black chair 
Under the thrush  
I start to sing 
Eileen Aroon 

FETUS aborted.

But not before UD, who does Wordle just as a new game begins, at midnight, played. She had a devil of a time with FETUS, and she usually breezes through Wordle. She got, quickly, three of its letters, but all three kept being in the wrong place; and she had to stare for about fifteen minutes (an outrageously long Wordle time) at the alphabet, and shift letters around here and there in her head, to figure out what the word could possibly be.

She got FETUS in four moves, which is more than respectable given its difficulty, only to be told by her fellow players (there are four of us) that they all got a different, easier word.





Whoa. Way to decimate the high-end LA/NYC real estate market.

Not to mention, more modestly and locally, Potomac, Maryland, down the street from ol’ UD, many of whose McMansions house a rich diversity of foreign kleptocrats…

I mean, first they came for the Armenians (starting with A, I presume), and I did not speak out— Because I am not an Armenian. Then they came for the Brazilians, and I did not speak out— Because I am not a Brazilian. Then they came for the Croatians, and I did not speak out— Because I am not a Croatian. Und so weiter.

If my government truly takes the wonderfully named Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Awards Program seriously, expect all those exciting new super-thin luxury towers overlooking Central Park to thin to nothingness, babe. More critically, expect UD’s little house’s price (currently overvalued, by some online estimates, at close to a million dollars) to plummet as all the nearby rich people who are propping the poor thing’s value up go to jail.

Seriously, do you really want to go down that path?

Spring Chez UD

She’s wilded her front lawn, so no lawn guilt. She’s actually not keen on azaleas (too many of them; too pastel), but a lot of her garden is gifts from her mother’s garden, and she’s sentimental about keeping the gifts, even if they’re not what she would have chosen. The above-ground wires you see always make me remember my big-shot developer Uncle Mario, who found this ancient technology shocking.

This is UD‘s front garden; dedicated readers will also be familiar with the back, which features a recently installed pollinator garden plus lots of woodland. Photos of that when it does something interesting.

La Kid’s currently dining at the Kennedy Center with Jimmy Kimmel, Steve Carell, and Jon Stewart at the …

… dinner before tomorrow’s ceremony awarding Stewart the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. The whole thing’s vegan. She snapped a pic of the first course:

If you build a forest of dead limbs…

… they will come.

‘The sunlight on the garden…
… Hardens and grows cold. / We cannot cage the minute /Within its nets of gold.”

Spring, UD‘s garden.

Dog rushes to join us on our nightly…

… “perimeter walk,” when Les UDs walk the length and breadth of their property. This often coincides with sunset, but this evening was so beautiful that we took our walk early.

The main thing I wanted to say about this image is that you’ve GOT to imagine the sweet powerful aroma coming off those white viburnum flowers. It says here that the scent is a “sweet, rich, spicy vanilla,” which sounds about right. There’s something of chai tea to it.

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