Monday, March 14, 2011

compare and contrast.

OK, I’ve surfaced.

We’re back home in Vermont – have been since Friday. On Saturday, we unpacked, I cleaned the house, we snuggled with the kitties and did the whole “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me”/pancakes ritual. (Local Hero Tom Bodett won the week’s championship, too, as a special welcome home bonus.) We only left the house because we’d been invited to a St. Patty’s Day party. Some folks there indulged in car bombs, which seem to involve Guinness, Jameson’s, and Bailey’s. Good Lord. I’ll pass. I over-indulged in chocolate chip cookies, instead. Burp. Blech. Ugh. NEXT…

On Sunday, I taught a friend of mine Level 1 Reiki. Yee-haw! I’ve now attuned eight people to Level 1, plus I’ve re-attuned a friend who’s already a Master. It feels lovely to combine my natural orientation towards teaching (which usually finds expression in boring things like “how to use keyboard shortcuts in Excel”, and occasionally extends to the more exciting “why look, a red maple!”) with content that’s near and dear to my heart and spirit.

This evening I went to a choir sectional. Our choir is now doing Handel’s “Israel in Egypt”, which has a whole surreal Monty Python feel to it.

Compare and Contrast

In Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Second Brother consults the Book of Armaments for the instructions to the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch:

And the Lord spake, saying, 'First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin. Then, shalt thou count to three. No more. No less. Three shalt be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, nor either count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then, lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who, being naughty in My sight, shall snuff it.'



Let’s compare this to ”Israel in Egypt”, No. 14. Chorus, “But the waters overwhelmed their enemies”.

“But the waters overwhelmed their enemies, overwhelmed their enemies, there was not one of them left, there was not one, not one, there was not one of them left, there was not one of them left, not one, not one, there was not one, not one, not one, there was not one, there was not one, not one of them left, there was not one, not one of them left, there was not one, not one of them left: the waters overwhelmed their enemies, overwhelmed their enemies, there was not one left, there was not one, there was not one, not one, there was not one, not one of them left, not one, there was not one of them left.”

I don’t think there was anyone left, but I’m not sure.

Yeah, I have been known to giggle during rehearsal, but I was very well behaved this evening. But only because one of the other two Python fans in the second soprano section wasn’t there tonight, and I wasn’t sitting next to the other miscreant.






In other another compare and contrast, I lost a small bag of jewelry – some silver cuff bracelets and a handful of earrings – on the trip home from South Carolina, and I am more heartbroken than I would have expected. Perhaps because one of the bracelets in question was given to me by my father, or because the bag itself was a gift from my sister, who despite her many virtues cannot count “frequent gift giving” among them. (No offense, honey.) I’m also aware that you know what? it’s just stuff. Let’s do another compare and contrast: my life, to the lives of just about anybody in Japan at the moment. Who am I to worry over shiny metal objects that I wear as personal ornaments? I have a roof over my head.

And then a friend reminded me that it’s entirely likely that plenty of Japanese women who have lost everything in the last week, are particularly mourning their own small, sentimental objects – carried away out to sea, never to be seen again.

Since we’re on the subject of what moving water can do, let’s have a look at the field and pond down below the house. (You might recall that while we were away, an ice dam formed against the small bridge that leads to our house and those of our neighbors on either side – the brook flooded the field, and the Town had to come in with heavy equipment and re-route the brook to prevent it from rendering the nearby fire substation inaccessible.)

We’ll start with an overview. Here’s the view from the upstairs. See the handful of evergreens lined up in the middle of the picture? Usually the pond doesn’t extend that far to the left of them. And there is an entirely new channel down the middle of the field.


In the picture below, the horizontal line a little under the halfway mark of the photo is a whole new channel feeding the pond.


This is a lot of water.


Tomorrow I’ll have more time to venture outside and get some close-ups.

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