Oh hai internets. I'm home for the weekend, where I've discovered that Ace has inexplicably stopped the manic denuding of his belly. I've never known him to have fur on his belly, so this is a monumental thing that I have to trace to his increased quality time with the Brit. Ace spends his evenings wedged up sausage-style between the arm of the chair and the Brit's leg, and often makes himself known during video chats, and all of this seems to be doing him some good. He looks less neurotic, anyway.
My drive home was nice. I spent an inordinate amount of time on ipod overhaul on Thursday night and Friday morning before I left, and this made things very very pleasant, music-wise. It was a long-overdue project, and kind of an annoying one. I also consulted google re the thrifteries of central Wisco, and made several stops in pursuit of old-school thrift--in other words, not Goodwill. Some hallmarks of old-school thrift: handwritten price tags boasting actually thrify prices, piles of crap, and old ladies at the checkout counter. Three of the places I ended up going were exactly like this, with the bonus of radio polka at the best store. Unfortunately none of the stores had stuff I wanted to buy, but at least I know where to go if I'm ever marooned in Wausau.
Last weekend, the Brit visited me and we hung out and ate Indian food and went to the gym. The weekend before that, I was in Chicago for about 24 hours. Will someone tell me why it's been so many years since I've spent time in Chicago? I don't even think I ever visited when my brother was living there. I love that city, even though the potholes there are NOT MESSING AROUND. There are some infrastructure problems. I took some bonehead zen-driving route to get out of downtown on my way back to Wisco, and the decrepitude of the bridge I crossed to get to the freeway shocked me.
Anyway, the Brit and I have to go back there together and have a good long afternoon in the Art Institute. On this trip, I only had about 1.5 hours, in which time I saw a whole mess of the permanent collection and a really stellar Munch exhibit. Then I heard a Bach concert and reconnected with a friend from Sweden I hadn't seen in about 14 years--she was one of the soloists. I also got to meet her mom and munch on her baby the next day. And I stayed in a Lincoln Park hotel that was awesome, right across from the conservatory and zoo, both of which are freeeee. A conservatory garden will fix you right up when you think you've had about all you can tolerate of a long winter.
And you know, I've had about all I can tolerate. The backyard is a mudpit and the garage is full of seeping meltwater and there are allegedly buds on the lilac bush, but there's still a lot of cold and snow and ice everywhere. However, the frequency of teaser days is increasing, and I have to confess that I didn't wear my coat at all yesterday while the temp was in the 40s. I also saw 4 people in shorts. I know I mention this phenomenon a lot, but you must agree that it's pretty noteworthy. On Thursday, the day's warmth turned into heavy fog when the sun went down. I came out of my studio late at night into a scene out of a black and white art movie: thick mist catching the pale light of the old-fashioned streetlamps in the park, throwing the skeletal trees into sharp relief. There have also been a lot of fabulous conjunctions of Venus and the moon. These are the things you cling to when winter seems like it will never end.
I don't know what the rest of the weekend holds. I'm catching up on work, we're watching some of David Attenborough's Planet Earth series, the Brit's in the basement pulling down gross ceiling tiles and exposing a hot mess of old mouse nests. I'm making rosemary lentil rice soup, after spending the rest of the day eating pastries, pretty much. It's all good times.