Saturday, January 20, 2007

For some inexplicable reason, the blog isn't accepting posts for the second day in a row.
Sigh -- just like old times, only faster, thanks to high-speed access!

Hopefully, this'll all be corrected soon. Just posting to note the problems and delay.
Saturday Musings

Well, the move is over -- tried to post an announcement here yesterday afternoon, but for some reason it wouldn't go through. Maybe it'll post this AM.

Apologies for missing two daily posts this week. The move, the move -- and the down-to-the-wire Center for Cartoon Studies tasks (the move derailed my administrative paperwork chores terribly) -- kept me preoccupied.

There was also Thursday's trip to Middlebury College, to speak to Cole Odell's excellent comics class, among the missing time blog-wise -- Cole was a gracious and attentive host, we had some fun, and his class was great, a remarkable mix of students. If I had a photo of the group, I'd post it, because they really were a lively and engaging group; their questions were insightful, it made for a solid session.

I was invited to join the group for lunch after our session in the classroom, and we were joined by two professors (one of whom, Don Mitchell, I knew from my Breadloaf Young Writers Conference days and was overjoyed to see, though we didn't get to talk much) and I shamelessly showboated, answering any and all questions.

The drive to and from Middlebury was a treat, too, though loooooooong: having moved over an hour "closer" to Middlebury, I still had the same duration drive I used to have from Marlboro! Such is the "ya can't get thar from heyar" nature of roadways in Vermont, especially midstate. It's a two-and-a-half hour drive, I was told -- that said, I gave myself extra time and made it to Middlebury with time to spare. Two pancakes and two sausage patties worth of time, in fact.

The drive to was ravishing: it was two degrees outside and crystal clear; the air was so cold that the running rivers were steaming (a procession of uncanny, non-moving vapor wisps that hung over the water, which was and is churning too fast to freeze) and the vegetation on the immediate banks were bristling with whiskers of frost. Stunning, eerie, beautiful.

The ride home meant taking another route (I'm exploring this part of my home state every chance I get, having a fresh geographic orientation now to all points), which involved a steep climb up Route 125 from Ripton, a route I chose for sentimental reasons: it takes me right by the old Breadloaf Campus. I love that place.

Cooler still, though, were the deep-frozen brooks and streams along 125, which were spectacular; the play of light and shadow midday, with the sky just easing into overcast with the occasional peek of sun, was mesmerizing. I stopped at one point and pulled on my boots to wander down by the brookside and savor the frosty tableaus. Winter, at last.

Cutting down Route 100 -- the road I grew up on and know so well -- I saw a sign saying "Bethel: 18 miles" and thought, "Huh, that'll cut me over to interstate 89 in no time!" Sure enough, where 100 and 107 meet/split (depending which way you're headed) in Stockbridge, I cut up over to Bethel (driving by the ever-alluring Advanced Animations sign; it's not an animation studio, but a remote VT business that builds all the life-size animatronic creatures and dinosaurs that tour the world, including the popular museum "Dinomation" exhibits) and was on 89 South in record time.

Home again in a little over 90 minutes -- a faster route to Middlebury, when it isn't storming! Cool!

Once home, I was scrambling: Dave Gabriel and his brother Mike were working here (wait until you see the shelving work they've done -- photos, soon!) and we were scheduled to complete the platform and assemble the flat file before they headed home. That meant ripping into Windsor and picking up some last-minute supplies needed for the task, which I did, and before Dave and Mike were out the door, my flat file was assembled in the basement atop its new platform (in case the basement ever floods) and ready at last.

This means I can now file my artwork, all of it, and clear my small studio room -- and bring in my drawing board and light table. This means this week, amid all first-week-of-the-new-semester CCS hubbub, I'll be able to chip away at finally setting up one portion of my new home. It's been weeks; I'm eager to get into it.

With the conclusion of the movers work at Marlboro yesterday afternoon, I took a few moments after the truck pulled away to wander the house, say goodbye to one of the sweetest homes I've ever lived in: the first I've owned, too. It was indeed kind to us, and we were kind as we could be to the house, rebuilding it from the shell it was when we first saw it. The new owners are excited, the closing is on Monday -- they have heady plans for further reworking the house, making it into the home they need and want. Ah, I love change, transition: it's always an agonizing process, but necessary to life.

I took my last walk through the house, seeing the rooms empty, completely empty and open for a new family, for the first time. It's never been completed as a house and empty before, in our experience. We were moving in as the work was being completed back in December 2001 to April 2002, so I'd never seen the house empty, clean, free of the clutter of our lives (and, ahem, my enormous quantities of shit). I went outside and walked around, took one last, lingering look from the back yard across mid-Marlboro, and then I was off. Met the movers in Ascutney, we unloaded (into my rented storage space), and that was that.

Then, back to work at home. All in all, a most eventful couple of days.

I finally wrapped up my syllabus work this AM, and Marge offered to help me set up my CCS office space in White River Jct., which must be done by Monday night -- so, with that, I'm off. Got bookcases to pick up from the storage space, work to do in my Verizon Building office at CCS -- see ya here tomorrow.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , ,