sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

February 28, 2020


hearth, friends, and return
posted by soe 1:59 am

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. The bookstore I visited in Phoenix had a fireplace.

2. My volleyball team is signing up for a new season, and one of my teammates has been taking care of the details via email. The teasing that filled the messages was that of close friends. I love them so much.

3. Corey’s joy at having me home.

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world lately?

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February 27, 2020


fort lauderdale toward sunset
posted by soe 1:05 am

Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale beach

No sewage that I noted, but they were flying the flags that indicated “dangerous marine life” and “medium hazard” for man o’wars (jellyfish on steroids) and rip currents, so I only got my toes wet.

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February 26, 2020


hitting the road again
posted by soe 1:20 am

I am on the road again for work tomorrow, this time to Fort Lauderdale.

Interestingly, all three of my recent trips — to the Bay Area, to Phoenix, and to southern Florida — will have had similar weather — highs in the 70s.

I might have hoped for slightly warmer weather for this trip, since I’ll be staying through Saturday with the original hopes of getting in some beach time. Also, Fort Lauderdale has been struggling in recent months with sewage leaks (19 of them since December), so I will need to be careful in finding a beach to visit. They have nearly 25 miles of coastline, so I’m still optimistic that I may yet be able to find an area that’s not hazardous. However, if it’s as bad as some articles have claimed (dead fish floating on rivers), I’m not above canceling my extra time and coming home early.

But I am staying in a small, plantation-style hotel with just a dozen rooms, part of a resort of faded glory and, in the case of this hotel, seemingly Southern gothic charm. (I’m hoping for the quirky side of that descriptor, rather than creepy.) I am a fan of off-beat accommodations, so I’m hopeful this will be a plus. It does have a pool, so hopefully even if ocean swimming is out of the question, I’ll still get to don a bathing suit for a while.

It’s also spring training, and my two favorite teams train in Florida. I got rained out of seeing baseball last Saturday in Phoenix, but I am hopeful that I can pull off a game in West Palm Beach, which seems to be less than an hour north of Fort Lauderdale via train. And if neither the beach nor baseball is possible, maybe I’ll take the train south into Miami for the day or figure out how to book a tour of the Everglades, which are nearby. What I’m saying is that there are options, and I am determined to avail myself of them.

Plus, maybe I’ll get to see a manatee in the wild, which would be amazingly awesome. Keep your fingers crossed!

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February 25, 2020


for the book lovers… this is where we live
posted by soe 1:38 am

This short film, This Is Where We Live, celebrated the 25th anniversary of 4th Estate Publishers, an imprint of HarperCollins, when it first came out more than a decade ago. I meant to share it with you 18 months ago, but just discovered it in my drafts folder when I was looking for something else. I guess it’s good to go in there periodically, eh?

If you liked this, 4th Estate has several “making of” videos on their Vimeo channel.

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February 24, 2020


garden 2020: day 1
posted by soe 1:48 am

Winter Garden

As I’d hoped, the weather and my schedule cooperated and I got to spend time today puttering in my garden plot. And by puttering I mean, clearing the main bed, turning soil, and planting seeds.

But after a couple hours, it felt nice to see something looking so … tidy and taken care of.

Garden 2020: Day 1

The back portion is several rows of peas and the front row is several rows of spring greens.

I haven’t bought any new seeds this year, so we’re seeing what will sprout from past seasons. I feel more optimistic about the seeds from last year than the ones from 2009, but either way those seeds are out of my house and in the ground.

And while I’m relatively sure that doing this much planting so early in the year will guarantee a blizzard and frozen ground in the next two weeks, these are all plants that flourish in cooler weather and should be able to withstand a certain amount of cold.

Have you started thinking yet about what you’re going to grow this year?

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February 23, 2020


sunday plans
posted by soe 2:30 am

Phoenix Bike Mural

I’m currently hanging out at the Phoenix airport waiting for the red-eye plane that will take me home. It’s been a long couple days and I’m done. I may not be awake long enough for the flight attendant instructions.

But I will make good use of tomorrow. I should arrive home just as the farmers market opens, so I’ll take the compost over and get some breakfast before I take a short nap with Corey.

I have bowling in the early afternoon (thus only a short sleep) and would like to follow that up by planting some peas in my garden. And maybe I’ll return a few things to the library.

Tomorrow night I need to stay awake long enough to watch the final installment of Sanditon and to greet Rudi when he returns from coaching in central Pennsylvania. However, I’m betting he won’t object too much if I want to make it an early night. Monday’s coming fast, after all… (Plus, the next work trip begins on Wednesday.)

Have a great Sunday, everyone!

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