Friday, December 23, 2011

Over the River

LaGuardia is a madhouse.  Crowded, too.
The lines wind around like wrinkles on an elephant's flesh.

(Ananda Photography)

Speaking of elephants, my airport reading purchase is Zoo Story:  Life in the Garden of Captives
 by Thomas French, 
about the evolution of the idea of the zoo in a world that doesn't (can't) 
support its own creations anymore.
Zoos now purport to be one of the last resorts for endangered species, at least of the animal variety.   
50 percent of all current species are going, going, gone, studies say.

But, hey, here I am at last, on the right side of the plane, the left.

Good to have a record of what NYC looks like before the great 21st century floods.

The Hudson shines in the afternoon sun, 
as does an unknown river in Wisconsin (?)

As do the Mississippi and tributaries in Minneapolis:

I used to know this puffed up building as the Minneapolis Dumb Dome.
It's official name was the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome until 2009 until it was awkwardly re-named 
the "Mall of America Field in the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome."  

So Hubert was once again shunted aside, 
this time by the rabid powers of consumerism rather than the rabid powers of Richard Nixon.
Anyone remember Hubert, that hard working liberal politician, one of the founders of the Minnesota Democratic Farmer/Labor Party, who would have made a much better president than Nixon?
Rick Perlstein in the NY Times last March (on the un-celebrated 100th anniversary of HHH's birth)
"That such a central figure in American history is largely ignored today is sad.  But his diminution is also, more importantly, an impediment to understanding our current malaise as a nation, and how much better things might have been had today's America turned out less Reaganite and more Humphreyish."
(AP Photo/Ann Heisenfelt)
Here's what the great "Mall of America" dome looked like last Dec. 12th when the roof collapsed.

However, there is a more worthy building on the University of Minnesota West Bank Campus named
the Humphrey School of Public Affairs where they address subjects like
"The Changing Arctic:  Int'l Cooperation and Development.

Minneapolis is a cute little city...
...that we drive by...
 ... as to Grandmother's house we go...

Here is the view from my mother's window, in New Richmond, Wisconsin.  
My parents have always lived near water - but now my mother
is land-locked in a sprawling complex for "elderly types," as my father would have put it.
I spend a week in the bosom of the Deerfield, watching old movies, doing an impossible jigsaw puzzle of Van Gogh's "Starry Night"... 

...and eating lunch in the company of
pleasant Mid-western people with white hair and walkers. 
No endangered species here.


As one of the bizarre few who enjoyed school lunches, 
I am happy to revisit breaded cod, mashed potatoes and marble cake.
Well, okay, the cake is a bit dry and I don't care for the peanut butter/chocolate frosting.
(I love both these things but never, never together!  Well, except for the odd dark chocolate chunk dipped into the organic chunky peanut butter jar...)
Along with lunching, I spend time every day on the recumbent bike reading my zoo book
since there is no snow, 
and also since I shouldn't be skiing in any case because I am
recovering from plantar fasciitis, or "fashy" as the cool people call it, 
gotten from tramping around Manhattan in silly shoes which were
subsequently ruined by the cruel Chelsea streets, along with my foot:
Not the best street shoes, it appears.
Here is my current evening footwear:

In any case, the week floats along as if in a dream.

This is the evolution of my mother's "Pink Salad" which we whip up to bring to the 
Christmas gathering:

This dish is meant to be eaten with the main course -- it is not a dessert, which is what my husband Frank mistakenly thought when first confronted with the astounding reality of the pink salad 
melting into his gravy.  
You, too, might think that maraschino cherries, crushed pineapple, whipped cream and marshmallows smack of dessert, but you would be wrong.  
Don't forget the pink salad has cream cheese in it, which is not a dessert food. 

Happy eating!


  1. I can't believe I never have even wondered what was in the pink salad!! It's strange to see it unfinished. Wonderful post! Great photography!