On New Year's Day we went for a walk to clear away the cobwebs spun by the late night and by glasses of bubbly. We also wanted to survey the post pyro-circus damage.
Absolutely everywhere, there were empty bottles lined up and used to launch bottle rockets.
I'm always surprised not to see cars with the ends of rockets sticking out of them; or tendrils of smoke escaping from shattered living room windows.
Thousands of half-looped revelers with lighters and explosives. Amazing there isn't more damage, actually.
Someone's trailer was used as a launch pad.
In spite of the chaos, many citizens did indeed take their bottles to the crammed-full recycling bins and lined them up neatly. Even sorting them by colour. (!)
There were prettier sights along the Isar River.
There's one particular spot which is a magnet for swans and at any time of year you can go there and find scores and scores of them.
When they take off in flight, the sound is unbelievable, a swooshing thwap which makes you aware of just how huge and powerful these birds really are.
Geese and Gulls and Crows also frolicked.
All this under a Winter sky.
On the walk home through the forest, I found this tiny nest.
A book I'm currently reading and enjoying immensely has to do with forests.
Sara Maitland's "Gossip From the Forest: the Tangled Roots of Our Forests and Fairytales."
Maitland spent a year visiting twelve different forests around Great Britain. She looks at them not only as important ecological entities, but also as what they mean for our deep story-rooted past. At the end of each chapter, she rewrites a known tale. I find her writing clear and witty and I totally agree with her Rumpelstiltskin - a tale I've always found frustratingly unfair.
Late one night in our indoor forest of one, odd sounds roused me from bed. Turning the lights on full blast, I found the cause.
Earlier, when I told my husband that it would be fun when Molly first tries to climb the tree, he said that there's no way she could do that.
He's never had a cat before.
And now with the New Year already in swing, and the children (finally!) back in school, I can get back to work. I've unfortunately had to move out of my studio. It was a beautiful, old place that I took so much inspiration from, but I've had to leave. (My landlord and I are having a disagreement, and I've - regrettably - had to ask for legal council over the matter.)
I've had very bad luck with studios here, so I'm going to paint from home from now on. Our flat is very small, but people have - and do - work under far worse circumstances, so in the spirit of "counting my blessings," I've once again organized my room for work.
My collage shelves.
I have two shows coming up, one for March and April, and another for July. I'm upswing about that.
I've also joined a full-manuscript critique writer's group - a spin off of the Online Writer's Workshop for writers of Fantasy, Horror, and Sci-Fi. There are nine of us, and we have a March 15th deadline. That's perfect for me. I've been wanting to get back to my fiction writing for ages, and now I've got the perfect incentive.
It feels good to start the year with all this momentum.
And I still stick by what I said in the last post: I do have a very good feeling about 2013.
(Gotta be better than 2012 was.)