Sunday, January 23, 2022
A Manual Bird, a Frozen Orchid and a Spotted Dog
This little robin was perched in our Philadelphus yesterday morning, singing its heart out. Taking the picture proved a challenge: the white sky confused the camera's auto-exposure function, and auto-focus wouldn't work because of all the branches and twigs between me and the bird. I had to turn everything off and take it manually, just like the old days.
(I usually use program mode with auto-focus, which allows me to set the focal points but does everything else automatically.)
Olga and I stayed indoors most of yesterday. We went for a morning walk, and I found some discarded plants by the curb that had obviously fallen out of someone's garden waste bag. There were a pot of daffodils and this:
Let me say outright, saving this plant is going to be a long shot. It's an orchid, and it was obviously sitting outside in the waste bag when we had our below-freezing temperatures a few nights ago. The leaves are limp and mushy. But the roots and the crown of the plant look like they might be OK. I need another orchid like I need a hole in the head, but I'm motivated by the challenge. So I put it in that pot and brought it inside.
The daffodils, sadly, will have to be thrown out because I think they got run over by a car. The bulbs are all broken.
About a week ago I showed you the portrait that blog pal Vivian painted of Olga. Well, Vivian actually did two paintings -- she also wanted the challenge of painting Olga's entire body with its intriguing spots. So I sent her a photo of Olga "splooting" in the grass -- that's what it's called when a dog lies with its belly flat on the ground, back legs out to the sides -- and she came up with this fabulous image. Once again, on her blog she discusses her process and decision making. (She actually tweaked the painting after she sent me this photo, adjusting the shading of the Kong a bit more.) I'm so happy to have these portraits. Or I will be, when the Royal Mail delivers them.
Last night, Dave and I watched "Munich: The Edge of War" on Netflix. It was a good movie, featuring a talented cast including the ridiculously handsome Jannis Niewöhner, and we also ordered some take-away hamburgers which thrilled Olga to no end. While looking over the menu before ordering I exclaimed, "Three pounds for apple and beetroot slaw? That seems crazy to me."
Dave laughed and said, "I love it when your mom comes to visit." (My mother is known for her parsimonious nature.)
I said, "Well, it's going to happen for the rest of your life, so enjoy it."