Monday, May 18, 2009

More of My Town

I need to cheer myself up. No explanation, it's just true. So I'm shelving my own plans for this Thursday's 13 and instead posting more photos of my surroundings today. Plus I want to share this with my dear friend Human Being, who today posted one of her poems with me in mind. It was a gift, and in return I think she will like seeing more of where and how I live. Of course I hope in some small or large way it's also of general interest.
For starts, I just love this wall in my living room. My partner JB weaved the five wall hangings, and I loved hand-selecting every book in the bookshelf. The "flowers" in the tall vase are from the backyard rhubarb, thanks to Chewy telling me to get them off the plant.

I spent a small fortune for this planter, but it should last all summer on the kitchen steps. Sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and make yourself happy. This arrangement makes me happy. I'm not apologizing.

This is my view just before I turn into the driveway. I live on a circular cul-de-sac with four houses and plenty of mature giant trees. My house is not fancy. It's a seven room ranch with a sweet four season porch and room for sleepovers, which at my age you'd think I'd have no interest in, but I love having company overnight.

So now we're leaving the cul-de-sac and driving one mile to my local cafe. This is the kind of place that has poetry slams on Wednesday nights and old couches squeezed around one long community table. Not often enough I take my laptop there and cuddle into my favorite booth by the window and I write. I like the self-that-I-am whenever I do that, and I appreciate when I am that self. (say, what?!)

A half mile down the road this sign is at the entrance to the community hospital. This is in line with a federal law that says 'drop your newborn off, no questions asked'--an alternative for desperate women who either cannot or feel they cannot keep their baby.

And here's the town hall--in my opinion a structure that doesn't fit in with the quaintness of my town at all. But it was designed by a well known architect. Personally I think it belongs in a different continent.

The local bread store,

The local fruit store,
A sweet restaurant that barely seats twenty people,
a local pub that wasn't afraid to express a prevalent opinion in my town,

the local copy shop,
and finally, every day on my way home from town, the field of the local vocational technical school, which includes agriculture in it's curriculum.
So... for someone who lives in a nice house, and a nice town, surrounded by good and loving people, who has a wonderful job, and has published her first book to good reviews, what exactly is my problem?


  1. You have no problem.

    I love the town and I have to say the planter is gorgeous.

    I agree about the town hall it is actually nice until you see the turrents on top. Looks like something for the Knights Templar.

    Can you believe it kj. You are an author. You have published a book. Amazing. Did you know I love writers.


  2. Oh yes kj I do know it.

    A book, a writer, a grandmother who owns a lovely home and has a great living area with weaved art on top of a bookcase.

    I couldn't make the picture bigger I had wanted to see your partners art.

    Love Renee xoxo

  3. bow pretty and calm and i have your e mail? mine is let's talk sister!

  4. You're the only person (so far) who has my new address even though I won't be living there for 2 months.

    Hey, how come you didn't include me in the Canadians that you love?
    Me and Renee are tight you know. I find out things.

    I love your town. That town hall is whacked though. I think the architect or designer is famous in his own mind! It belongs in a Monty Python movie. I love the copy place the best.

    The planter is awesome. That could be exactly what you'd find in my yard. Lobelia and those tiny little petunia looking things. Perfect!

    Another beautiful day in the neighborhood KJ ;)
    Pretty soon you'll be my neighbor!


    ha ha...word verif = expati as in ex-patriot of Calif. You have to be careful of people who make up word verifications to suit their posts though!! I mean really.

  5. Dunno kj, sounds like me . . .sometimes we all need a little self indulgence. Take yourself off for a massage or a facial. . .won't solve your problems but you'll feel good! A little soulfulness is good for the soul, just don't let it consume. I love your town, love your contented cows and Red Barns . . .and the planter is a little swish of spring as my leaves are falling . . .cheers honeybun . .you'll be fine!

  6. Not having a recognizable problem really isn't a problem but that town hall on the other hand falls under the "what were they thinking" problem.

  7. wow!
    kj... what a gift... you know how i love the tours around your town or house... the things you show us, are things you choose among many... and through them we come to know a lot of things about you... the things here tell me how your soul knows beauty and harmony... that's why you don't like the town hall... me too!

    3-4 of the pictures were filtered from here and now all the antifilters are filtered too!!!!that's why i cannot get to a few blogs like Soulbursh's... or see some of the pics here and there...

    another thing about you is that you have a very generous heart... you recieve a small gift but give away a great one in return...

    i'm honored to be here to share your world with you...

    the things in your house... the wallhangings, the books the flowers with your touch in arrangement... were all awesome...

    and yes all these beauties and blessings fill one with joy and doesn't let her feel low...

    think long walks in your neighborhood is the best remedy... i love walking... it gives me peace and calmness even in a crowded and polluted city like Tehran...

    love you a lot and thanks for being there for all of us...
    you are a gem!

  8. Great post!! I don't know which photo I like better ... the bread shop, the veggie restaurant, or the baby haven sign ... one of my favorite towns on earth!!

  9. KJ,

    I agree with Renee....I love the picture walks. You wrote a fabulous book, you are of kind spirit.

    Ok the town hall is fugly and out of place...I see monty python as LOLO or Benny Hill( I loved that show when I younger...even if it was a no no..I watched...

    I love your personailty and artistic ability to write...You better have a Good week dammit...

    Sonia ;)

  10. Hi KJ,
    Your town is so amazing. If only I could visit here....:(
    but thanks for showing us, at least I don't get to come here, my heart get to belong to this cool town for a while.
    Wow! hungry ghost bakery, cool copy shop, fruit shop....these are rare scene!
    I love your focal point library.
    Very elegant and it blend in to your house well!
    Take care and bye KJ!

    Pls. forgive me if I have any typo error...I am very sleepy now but I got the mission to comment.

  11. Hey kj,
    Loved this tour,,the architecture in your area is charming. (well, except for that one mistake)
    Chewy's bouquet idea is fabulous,,,and the planter is to die for!
    Sometimes we can be grateful for all we have and yet still yearn for something,,,not even knowing what 'it' is. Maybe it's just to give us a reminder. Otherwise we might not stop and think to be grateful.Ya think?
    Just another little bump in the road; go around, take the detour.

  12. Wow you really live in a cool place!
    Even if you have all this you can be down sometimes, I have the same.....reason? No idea, hormons? wrong thinking? Have no clue.
    Mostly it just passes and we are ready to enjoy everything waiting there

  13. thanks for more views of your sweet town. the vegetarian restaurant was esp appealing. so glad you indulged in the planter. it is gorgeous and will bring such pleasure.

  14. KJ-I really enjoyed the trip through your town. I will do the same when I get back.

    The town hall is just a little disturbing-the rest of the town is all cozy and community, and then BAM-this institution arises.

    You said it best-sometimes we just have to bite the bullet and please ourselves. My cinder block gardens tickle the crap out of me, while the neighbors are still struggling to figure them out.

  15. "...what exactly is my problem?"I dunno, but I know what you mean...and then, you were saying to me (was it last week?) that you are not your problem, the problem is the problem.
    Its a tough question, and Im still looking for the answer myself.
    Hang in there, and take whatever comfort you can from knowing you are not alone, Hugs!

  16. Is that lobelia with the petunias? I just planted a couple of clumps of that. Since it's a perrneial, you could stick it in the ground at teh end of the season and get a return of it next year.

    Is the Hungry Ghost bakery owned by Buddhists?

    And, as you know, just because you have a good life doesn't mean you get to be exempt from sorrow when it hits.

  17. ya know - sometimes its okay to feel discontent - even in the midst of the beauty and quirkyness of a new england town. There are MANY days when I have to remember to give myself permission to be human. I wish I could be sweetness and light all the time - but it just ain't working. the tour, the vegetarian restaurant caught my eye also.

  18. WOW! what a very charming place!!! I should be there by 4:30 tomorrow, haha! 7 rooms sounds like a manse :) I love your town and this was a wonderful post and I am thrilled that you received fanmail!

  19. You don't have to have a probelm to feel sad, sometimes you just feel sad, and that is okay. Love your town except for that ugly town hall :-). Like Renee, I want to see those weavings better, please.
    Big hugs, XOXO

  20. I first thought the town hall was your house ! ;-)

    Anyway... looks like you live in paradise!

  21. renee, mwah!

    soulbrush, an email's a'coming...

    lo, there is only one canadian named laurel that i love. it happens to be only you. you'll see this town soon enough.

    baino, 'cheers honeybun'? this is why i love you too baino. it's that easy, isn't it?

    walking man, oh i recognize my problem all right. that's part of the problem... :)

    hb, if i'm a gem, so are you. you lift me up into the trees, hb. do you see me? xo

    melissa, the town sends its love to you!

  22. sonia, hahaha! you sound like baino. i love the way you say your comments. keep them coming, please.

    yoon see, it is an honor to have your comments here. thank you for liking my town. i hope someday you may see a town like this in person. it is very fun to get to know you.

    hiya babs, how are you today? i think you and i would have a good time together--i think we'd laugh alot..

    marianne, usually i have a good reason to be sad, but i hold on to the reason for too long. i like the way you look at this. xoxo

    suki, you live in a quaint town also, right?

    debra kay, i will love to see your town! are you having fun? and i'm glad you're enjoying your cinder blocks. why the hell not?!

  23. lavender, thanks for checking in. the feeling and sentiment is mutual. we'll hang in together. afterall, we ARE terrific women. right?!

    cs, i'm now curious about who owns the bakery. no exemption when sorrow hits? yeah, i know.... xo

    mim, i want to shake confusion and shimmy and shake under the stars, raise my arms and throw my clothes to the wind and....(oh for god's sake kj, cool it...)

    oh my beloved val, i only wish you would be here at 4:30. do you gamble? meet me in las vegas? or santa fe? xoxo

    sidney, there is little to no poverty in this town. but it;s different 20 miles up the road.

  24. Nice place where you live, I love the trees.

    Must there be an exact season for not being cheerful today?
    I have those kind of days as well.
    Just hope your mood will pass if you give yourself some time.

  25. Problems are just little hiccups in our thought patterns. We just need to change the pattern every now and then. Thinks me with a frown on my forehead ;)

    I love the sign at your bakery and the baby haven shows we haven't moved on very far from those first baby hole in the walls at nunneries all those centuries ago.