Friday, May 23, 2014

Pieces of silver

A pair of dead trees above Donner Lake. Their barkless flesh, iridescent in the bright sun, speaks of what they've endured: cold frosts, sparkling snow and the crackling heat of rainless summers. I am up here volunteering with wilderness first responders, play-acting hypothermia, impalements and frostbite. Government officials came here annually to plunge a measuring stick in a snowdrift to get an idea of how much water is coming down to the parched valley. Like last year, not a snowdrift in sight.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Spring can really hang you up the most

My mom sang this song well. She died about 18 months ago, so she won't be around to meet my first grandchild, who's soon to be born. I would never have guessed life would roll out at this rate! When I was little, I was fascinated by the Life magazine photo captioned, “a thumb to suck, a veil to wear”. As it does for old ladies and brides, a veil makes our tiny back yard more mysterious. Nevertheless, the spring-expectant colors pulse through. Still waiting.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Plain Jane

Not-so-sketchy in Philly. It’s nice to work out a storefront design on a background that looks closer to the site’s next permutation than the derelict facade that’s really here. The plain jane storefront is cleaned up and wearing colors amenable to the next occupant. (I should not have included the blade sign; it’s bound to change.) Next up: back and forthing about window heights, visibility, building codes, etc. That's where having a sketch of the bigger context and a site plan helps.