It was a memorable moment when I heard a room full of 4th graders giggle as they listened to Prospero from Shakespeare’s The Tempest address the elves that make “midnight mushrumps.” It does sound funny, mushrumps, or mushrooms to the uninitiated. In spite of the sound they are certainly one of those growths that are unusual and mystical to me. They conjure fairies, gnomes and sprites as well as pipe-smoking caterpillars.
Today I saw more mushrumps growing in the wild than I have in my entire life. I took a walk around Benedict Pond, my old friend that has inspired many of my blogs (On Benedict Pond). I don’t usually get to trip around the pond in summertime when I am at my busiest acting and teaching, so I have missed the mushroom extravaganza until now.
Growing all along the path around the lake were variegated mushrooms. It was as though Hansel and Gretel had dropped them, instead of bread crumbs, all along the lake in order to find their way home. I made up a song as I bounced along based on a children’s tune my girls used to love by Raffi, “There were fat ones, skinny ones, fair ones too.” Adding my own lyrics, “Tiny ones, BIG ones, and long-necked tricks. Red ones, orange ones and mis-shapen dicks,” (a nod to Mr. Shakespeare where young Prince Edward in Henry VI Part 3 yells at his uncle, Richard…“And thou mis-shapen Dick, I tell ye all I am your better”). But I digress…
Nature never ceases to amaze me and the caps popping out of the leaf decaying soil played a magical game of hide and seek. I really don’t know anything about mushrooms other than you never eat them unless you know what you are hunting. Besides they are too beautiful and quirky to disturb. Like a floppy mole hiding in your armpit.
Enjoy this series of mushrooms all on one path, in one hour, on one day, by one lake. How one-of-a-kind lucky am I?
Another full year flies by with many new homes, hikes, plays, friends, family and surprises. What a lucky girl I am, in love with life, my girls, and the next adventure around the corner. Looking back as I dream forward. Happiest 2015 to you all!
Hear me roar!
Little lioness I found on the beach
The beautiful beach down the street
Caitlin, Me and Josie, such a lovely team, on the beach down the street.
February-March… Continue reading
I know, I’ve abandoned you, my sincere blog readers, as I got busy with life. I have missed writing and sharing with you all. I’ve been in Lenox, Massachusetts working for Shakespeare & Company and seeing so many of my goals come to fruition. I found a “map” that I created last February of all the hopes and dreams that I had at the time. When I unpacked from yet another move 7 months later, there it was, and four of the six things I had schemed about had come true already! These were things that I hadn’t expected to see happen until many years ahead.
Private Eyes at S&Co
The beach down our street
I am back to Lenox, MA after spending a month on Long Island directing Shakespeare with young people. It was such wonderful, happy month, learning new skills as a director, establishing old ones with confidence, and being with 2 co-teacher gals that are fun and talented. The school we taught in put us up in a wonderful cottage a half-mile from the ocean and I was in heaven getting to walk on the beach 3-5 times a week. Continue reading
“One cannot collect all the beautiful shells on the beach. One can only collect a few. One moon shell is more impressive than three. There is only one moon in the sky.” (Anne Morrow Lindbergh)
I am in love with this photo. I took it last week on the beach down the street. I have it on my computer desktop, I stare at it, get lost in it and feel so pleased with it. Rarely does that happen with photos that I take. I am not a photographer, I snap pictures with my iPhone to document my life, to please myself. I do not labor over taking a shot, but I just point, shoot and move on. Continue reading
In 2013…I danced with a 75-year-old Norwegian prince in Sun Valley, Idaho; drank beer with a track-hoe driver in Wyoming; exposed a friend to the ridiculous joys of miniature golf in Wisconsin; rode a cowboy’s horse down Main Street one evening in Colorado; watched the waves of the Pacific coast with the ghost of my ancestors; hugged 700 year old redwoods in California; made pancakes over an open fire with my mom and sister; fell in love with, and in, small towns across the states; mourned the loss of John Denver in Aspen; spent a weekend at a most special niece’s wedding in Oregon; hiked deliciously beautiful mountainsides; was treated to meals, drinks, couches, pillows, and connected conversations with so many friends old and new; taught/directed Shakespeare and opened metaphorical doors for kids from 11-18 yrs old in Massachusetts. Life is wonderful and the song playing over and over on my iPod is Jason Mraz’ Life is Wonderful…
The highlights start with time with my girls…
With daughter, Alicia, at Swingside Cafe, Seatte
Susanna being crowned at Hammond Castle, MA
Exploring Chicago with Audrey
Bundled up against the cold in Rockport, MA
Hood River, Oregon
Dinner at Dreamaway Lodge, MA
It’s nice to be back. I am finished with the Fall Festival residency where I co-directed Romeo & Juliet at a high school with a student body of 2200. It was completely frustrating, completely exhausting and completely fulfilling. It is the kind of work I want to do, it makes a difference, it changes people for the good, it creates dreams and possibilities for youth, it gives me a chance to use my creativity and impulses to change the world I am in. It was one of the most difficult and exhausting experiences as well. But I influenced some of the most entrancing, diverse teens I have had the pleasure to come across.
Our three Romeos and Juliets…
The beauty of autumn in Lenox, MA
I have been neglectful of my blog for very good reason, but the guilt of leaving you in silence has been weighing on me. I have so many wonderful experiences to share from my last travel escapades, but they will have to wait a bit longer. Continue reading
I was singing “Don’t Ya” as I was packing up my backpack for a day outing…
Don’t lie, you’ve got it all figured out
That smile, has got me spinnin’ around
Don’t even try actin’ like it ain’t no thing
Cause I can see you move a little closer, closer
…and I got in my car, turned it on, and yep, “Don’t Ya” was playing on my radio. This happens to me a lot, like I’m psychic or something. But it confirmed that today was going to be a good day.
The Maroon Bells
Welcome to Chautauqua Institute, “THWACK!” That is the sound I heard as the gate came down on the windshield of my car. Ugh. My first stop on my second journey west started with a bang.
Chautauqua Welcome Gate
Check point for gate access