This is a surprise post dedicated to those few people that may still read our blog. Hello! We're still here! Lu and I have been buried with work over the past few months, the highlights... 1- New House in new Cohousing Community 2- New Job 3- More hours in new Job Dynamics The result is that only now are we just starting to grasp a handle on our new rhythms and understanding where we have moments to breathe and relax. But we are getting there. For more regular info visit Blunden Studio , 3CUPS , and Pacifica . And as we emerge, I'll try to post more often!
I was doing my usual web/blog surf last week when I ran across a reference to the Bound For Glory exhibit at the Library of Congress. I have always been fascinated by history, photos, paintings, etc... You should have seen me the first time I went to the National Portrait Gallery in DC.
But whenever you see photos from any time before the 50s, everything is black and white - and really gives it a sense of ancient history. Here is the summary of what this exhibit is all about:
Bound for Glory: America in Color is the first major exhibition of the little known color images taken by photographers of the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information. These vivid scenes and portraits capture the effects of the Depression on America's rural and small town populations, the nation's subsequent economic recovery and industrial growth, and the country's great mobilization for World War II.
It is fascinating. When you see the pictures of the Great Depression or rural poverty in color it somehow makes to more real, obviously a product of the era in which I live. Take a look and see for yourself.
A rainy Sunday in Carrboro. We haven't had a rainy Sunday in Carrboro for a long time. So long that it feels weird, we can't remember the last rainy Sunday. But rainy Sundays are important, they allow you to take a break, catch up on things that always get pushed to the side when things are busy. I hope we have more rainy Sundays.
Thursday was Thanksgiving and we went to Mount Airy to share the holiday with family... this year the table was set for 18 people, a real event. It was great to have Razi, Lauren, Zayn, Anne, Lu and myself all together... for the first time since June 2004... wow. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday... and it is the day itself not the excesses on either side... traffic and shopping. But a day to gather with family and friends and give thanks for all the blessings and bounty that we share.
And now its back to the grind.
After much trial and tribulation, Lu's Conditional Residency Interview is on Thursday in Charlotte. All the papers are filled, photocopies made...hopefully it will be a formality... but we don't expect it to be. Right now we are two steps from the green card and one step from more liberty.
Then on Friday, two of Luisa's friends from Cali are going to be in DC and we are planning on going up to visit with them. Susana and Luis Fernando are going to be there for only a couple of days and to be so close merits a visit.
Work continues to be as hectic and rewarding as ever. Demanding yet fulfilling.
And there is the wrap up. Full of thanks... ready with ambition.
We've spent much of the month of October visiting my family in various locations. First, we went to Frederick, MD to visit Zayn and Anne. It was our first time to Frederick and we left pleasantly surprised, and excited that Zayn and Anne will be moving to the city. Frederick is a 2005 award winning community from the Main Street Program, something that interests me quite a bit, particularly with the work I am doing with the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership. In short, an old town of +- 50K with a vibrant downtown... that part of Maryland is beautiful and reminds me quite a bit of the rolling hills of NW NC.
Which brings us to our second trip of the month which was to MA for the Autum Leaves Festival this past weekend. I spent all day, Oct. 2 at FestiFall in Chapel Hill, and the differences between the two street festivals is stark... each vibrant and unique in its own way. I wish that musicians could just sit down and play in Chapel Hill like they can in Mt. Airy. I was walking down the street with Frank, my father, my grandmother (breaking in her new electric wheelchair in the most difficult of obstacle courses) and Luisa. We passed a boy no older than 12, with the case open in the street, playing tunes on the clarinet. I know he was doing well, I saw the roll of ones in his pocket. But the fact that circumstances alined so that he would feel confident and comfortable enough to break out the clarinet, of all instruments, is remarkable to me. And the hot ham biscuits.
It is this part of the early fall and late summers that Mount Airy casts a spell on me at the hour when dusk falls. There is a magical moment when the sky burns from blue through lavender and lilac and burgandy and crimson... all at the same time. There is a sense of balance and in the center is a blast of crisp air. It is a feeling that I only get in "The Hollows", and it sends a tingle down my spine when I hit the intersection of South Main and Renfro, at the base of Renfro Hill. I've never felt it anywhere else. Quetzaltenango had a similar event, but I felt in a bowl and the blast was of burning trash. Mount Airy is special and I will always long for the chance to live those early Autumn nightfalls. It feels like home and can only be described as "saudade".
After months on the back burner, the Capricious Peacock is back in business.
It has been a busy couple of months. Luisa and I have been working pretty hard. Lu keeps busy with CCDA and the Pacifica Cohousing Development, designing and collaborating on the custom design houses. As many of you know, we are in the process of purchasing a 1300 sq. ft. duplex in the cohousing community. This is quite exciting as it will be our first home. I'll post photos soon of the current stage of construction... the framing is up, siding on, roofs in progress and plumbing and mechanical on schedule. We're looking at a late January date. This takes quite a high percentage of our mental capacity and we find ourselves stopping by the construction site at least once a week.
For the past few months I have been working for Rooster Ventures and 3 CUPS. RV is a micro-enterprise venture capital firm that offers vc, incubation, cooperative services, etc... for food and food support business which share dedication to the slow food movement. Our vision is for a community of 10-15 like-minded businesses. The first is 3 CUPS, coffee tea and chocolate in the West End Courtyard on West Franklin Street in Chapel Hill. I have been working on a marketing plan and strategy, and execution thereof. Starting a business is hard work, and we hope that the experience we gain and lessons we learn will be applied to the rest of the community of businesses.
Our friends and neighbors, SandwHich also fall into this category, serving homemade sandwiches on handmade bread. If you are in Chapel Hill/Carrboro or the Triangle, you should stop by and check us out. For added incentive, this week 9/26-9/30 is our Hurricane Katrina Relief Week where 50% of the proceeds, gross money that comes in, between 6 and 9 pm will be donated to the Habitat for Humanity Hurricane Katrina Response.
Taking off the 3 CUPS hat, tomorrow is my first day at the Chapel Hill Downtown Economic Development Corporation. I have left the University, where I was doing financial administration, and will by plying my trade for the town of Chapel Hill. It has been a long ride, but I am looking forward to being involved as CHDEDC looks at issues such as wireless access, West End streetscape, occupancy, vacancy, events...
We arrived in Carrboro a little over a year ago... seems like yesterday. Lots of changes, steps, evolution, but overall we are quite happy with our great fortune to be doing what we want to do in a place we want to be. Last week, we saw the film, End of Suburbia in the Carrboro Century Center. We left quite proud that our chosen careers and current (and not too distant future) lifestyles are an effective demonstration of "voting with your feet" with regards to our impact on society. Words and deeds.
With that I reintroduce our readers, friends and family, to the Capricious Peacock and rededicate this blog as a portal into our lives. Que viva el viaje! Que Viva!
Sorry for the long time since the last post. Many things are changing for Luisa and I here in Carrboro. Luisa has started working for Giles Blunden and the Carrboro Collaborative designing houses in the Pacifica Cohousing...where we have started the process to buy a house. I have started working with 3 CUPS and Rooster Ventures in the West End Courtyard on Franklin Street in Chapel Hill. An exciting time that merits a post with more time and dedication than I can give at this time. Also, check in for new photos to be posted soon.
"What Botero has achieved is nothing short of a contemporary equivalent to Pablo Picasso's Guernica, the masterwork painted in outrage over the aerial bombing of civilians during the Spanish Civil War. Said Botero, 'No one would have ever remembered the horrors of Guernica if not for the paining.' And no one will ever forget the vision of hell Botero has committed to canvas with these startling oil paintings."
I am an admitted sports fanatic. But what does it say about our society when the NFL Draft draws much, much more passion than the state of education in the new context of global competition? Identifying that there is an imbalance is the easy part.