Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Appearances Count (for $) --- Day 6/345

Walk: PT, Pet Food Express, PGCC for bridge
Distance: 1 mile, PT

So the other day when Ciwt's knee doctor set her free, she felt like doing something to celebrate.  Plus she felt she was looking pretty wan after months of house arrest.  So she walked into the La Prairie counter at Neiman Marcus.  She knew it was an expensive line, but thought "It can't be that bad."  Wrong.  Without asking prices she bought one lipstick, one blusher and a tinted moisturizer.  Three items, total after taxes $218!!!

How can they get away with those prices, Ciwt wondered.  When she got home and opened her three
items, she got it.  Packaging.  Her lipstick ($55!) came in a shiny silver origami box with a drawstring felt pouch.  Not to be outdone, the blusher ($70) came in a silver and gold compact, lying in a special round zipper case all housed in a larger shiny silver origami box.  Basically Ciwt had bought some of tne cosmetics industries' most elaborate packaging - and Yippee for her excellent surgeon and knee healing progress.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Eras Big and Small --- Day /344

Walk:  Union Square, SFMOMA, Pet Stores
Distance:  2 miles and many Up/Down stairs

So Ciwt's knee doctor bid her a fond farewell today.  She's doing "amazingly well," and the rest of the healing is up to time (one year+/-) and her own home PT.  End of an era of sorts; feels kind of sad or something.

Then there is the beginning of a new cat era around Ciwt's home.  Today, after a quick cruise through the Rauschenberg show at SFMOMA and Walker Evans before it comes down, Ciwt did lengthly cruises through pet stores.  Buying and dragging up her stairs hundreds of dollars of food her cats will probably dismiss, cute beds they will walk past, and scratching posts they will likely (Damn!!) totally ignore.

Some eras aremore personal than others.

Monday, January 29, 2018

First Evening ---- DAY 6/343

Walk:  Presidio, PT, Milo Foundation
Distance: 3.5 miles, PT

Just home with TWO NEW CATS.  Back to you tomorrow. 

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Not Your Average Heroine --- Day 6/342

Walk:Cinema Club (A Fantastic Woman)
Distance: 2.2 miles  PT

Actor Francisco Reyes, Actress Daniela Vega, Film Director and Screenwriter Sebastian Lelio

The New Yorker reviewer seemed to want another movie, but Ciwt was pleased with A Fantastic Woman the way it is.  Particularly the truly fantastic acting by its magnetic star, Daniela Vega.  Oscar liked the Chilean movie too and nominated it as one of the finalists for Best Foreign Language Picture.  So, if you like excellent foreign movies and Oscar contenders, Ciwt says go to it and Lebanon's contender, The Insult.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

36 Years is A Long Time to Wait --- Day 6/341

Walk: Hood and Beyond, SPCA
Distance: 3 miles, PT, Posture Stretches

One Star Jasmine Tendril Begins to Climb 

So, thrity-six years ago, even before Ciwt got her first Apple IIe with floppy discs, she made her first attempt at landscaping her deck.  To create a privacy screen at the end of the deck (and for the lovely smell) she chose a Star Jasmine vine.  Every few weeks she'd come out to monitor the vine's growth. And, indeed, it had grown - Sideways.  Then more sideways and sideways again.

Finally, when she had her IIe and her surfing career began, she looked up Jasmine and found that 
more than 200 types of jasmine exist with many different characteristics. many are climbing vines and others are short, spreading vines great for ground cover.

Happily Ciwt knew one of the gardeners at the park down the block and he transplanted her spreading jasmine beside one of the tennis courts. Ciwt has always enjoyed visiting her burgeoning vine, and today she looked at the fence and noticed that one of the tendrils has actually started to climb  - after 36 years! 

Friday, January 26, 2018

Better to Hear You With? --- Day 6/340

Walk: de Young (Teotihuacan Exhibit), Clay Theater (The Insult), SPCASF
Distance: 2 miles, PT, Yoga

Standing Figure with ear flares, Teotichuacan, Mexico, 200-205, greenstone, pyrite and shell

Ciwt never knows what to think when she looks at ancient art. She's only minimally educated in the ancient and many ethnic disciplines and much of the signage for these exhibitions states something along the lines of the art and artifacts being so old even scholars can only surmise what they are.  Such was the case today when she went to the exhibit of recently discovered artifacts at Teotihuacan, one of the earliest, largest and most important cities in the ancient Americas.  It's now a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the most visited of all archaeologica sites.

Very often she encounters jewelry in these exhititions.  Huge, heavy pieces, like the ear flares above, and ends up walking out thinking something smart like: Wow, they didn't mess around with their jewelry.  How did they ever wear it?

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Destination ? --- Day 6/339

Walk: PT
Distance: 2.5 miles, PT

Ciwt is still midair in her recent transition to she doesn't know what.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Long Day --- Day 6/338

Walk: No, Rain
Distance: 0 basically 

Long morning doing phone meetings, long lunch, long bridge at club.  Now home, Ciwt is longing for solitude.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Posture Watchbird - Please --- Day 6/337

Walk: PT, SPCA
Distance: 1 mile, PT

Ciwt has been having strange little 'conditions' like shoulder and neck aches, digestion weirdnesses, prolonged lack of peppiness.  Low level but not usually like her.  She was just beginning to think, yup; old age, nothing to be done when she realized Posture!  After months of house arrest, lack of full daily yoga, doing her computer stuff in bed, using a cane Ciwt has developed Poor Posture.

From a childhood filled with admonitions to "Stand Up Straight," especially from her perfectly rigid grandmother, Ciwt got the impression good posture was about looking good - period.  But now she reads on one chiropractor's website "Poor Posture Increases Risk of Death by 44%."  Maybe self-serving in his case, but other websites talk about symptoms beyond the usual lower back, shoulder and neck pain.  Like depression, constipation, knee pain, poor circulation, stress.  And then here's a chilling report from Australia: A recent Australian study found that after the age of 25, every single hour of television—i.e., slouching on the couch—reduced the viewer’s life expectancy by 21.8 minutes. Plus, when English researchers cross-referenced sitting time with health outcomes in a different study, they found that those people who sat the most more than doubled their risk of developing diabetes and had a 147 % increase in their risk for cardiovascular disease, even if they exercised.

Yikes. As is often the case with that generation, grandmother's bromides were right on!  And Ciwt needs to go back to heeding them.  Now, Yes Maam!!

Monday, January 22, 2018

Black Day at the Shelters --- Day 6/336

Walk: SPCA, Animal Control, Pet Food Express
Distance: 1 mile, a little PT

The kittens are gone from the shelters now which is fine with Ciwt because she is in search of  more adult cat(s).  The ones that remain are mostly black.  So charmante as posters and actually dear in person.  Ciwt isn't superstitious, but she's just not sure (yet) she wants a black cat. 

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Day of Rest --- Day 6/335

Walk: No, Day of Rest
Distance: 0, PT, Yoga

Edouard Manet, Olympia, 1863, oil on canvas

Over 160 years later in our much more open times, Olympia has the power to shock.  She is an upper class kind of prostitute, coarse, direct, confrontational - and, mon dieu, good for her and Manet.  

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Cat . --- Day 6/334

Walk: Fillmore, SPCA
Distance: 10 blocks, PT, Pedal

So Ciwt is getting more serious about looking for new cat(s) companionship.  Not an easy task going to shelters or contacting fosterers, meeting the cats and then having to walk away when the match doesn't seem right.  Luckily most Bay Area shelters take care of their cats until they are adopted.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Last? Thread --- Day 6/332

Walk: Dine-In Kabuki (Phantom Thread)
Distance: 2 miles

Phantom Thread moves slowly and is filled with close, close ups.  Which is just exactly what Ciwt wanted in a Daniel Day-Lewis movie.  He is, as always, absolutely riveting.  The flicker of an eyelash is breathtaking - just he has planned it to be. 

Pity the poor actress who must play against Lewis you may think.  But not at all in Thread; the two actresses, lead and supporting,  stand perfect shoe to perfect shoe with him.  Ciwt says go and hope it really won't be Day-Lewis's last movie in spite of announcing his retirement.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

One Thing, Then The Next and the Next... --- Day 6/332

Walk: Rehab, TJ's, Heavy Phone Sessions, Club Book Group II
Distance: Only a Few Blocks, Major (and effective!) Rehab

Ciwt is stuck in the hunny jar at the end of this day...

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Back to Bridge --- Day 6/331

Walk: No, Rest Day
Distance: A few blocks to car and club, small yoga

Lucky Knot Bridge, Changsha, China

Ciwt is back to bridge at her club.  Some bridge days are stranger than others...

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Can We Talk? --- Day 6/330

Walk: PGCC Book Group
Distance: A few blocks, PT

Ciwt has noticed that people can be reluctant to say anything critical in book group discussions. So they just stare down at their feet or up at the ceiling in silence the whole meeting.  With that in mind, for CIWT readers in a book group, she recommends the above book.  It's a nice read, and most importantly a book most people like - so they will speak up and the room will be full of comments as it was in Ciwt's group today.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Flower Language --- Day 6/329

Walk:  Fillmore and practicing Ciwt's 'new' computr/car again and again 
Distance: 2 miles, a little PT, Up/Down x 5

Holiday season slowly recedes; the new year gently takes its place.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Guilty Fun--- Day 6/328

Walk: T.J's
Distance: 2 miles, PT, Pedal

Vikings 29              Saints 24

So, Minnesota native Ciwt grew up watching football and still does occasionally. Part of her feels guilty about this. She knows football has terrible problems and supports all efforts to spare young athletes the violence.

But every once in a while, something unbelieveable like this happens, and the athleticism, tension and thrill of the game overrides all that guilt. 'Miracles' are fun to watch. But if (understandably) her loyal readers don't want to look at the video πŸ™ˆ,, what happens is that the Vikings win over the Saints in the last 10 seconds of a playoff game.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Obstacles, The Tutorial--- Day 6/327

Walk:  Another Presidio Hike!πŸ˜€
Distance: 3 miles, PT, Pedal

As she returns to hiking a part of Ciwt's mind is in "Be Careful" mode.  This is new for formerly intrepid Ciwt but probably normal for people recovering from injuries.

The "BC" voice is hyper aware of obstacles. There are two types : Natural, which it sizes up quickly and walks carefully around or through.
Leaves on Sidewalk

Then there are the Unnatural ones like mothers cooing over their babies as they race strollers down the street, dog walkers with multiple, unpredictable charges off leash, entire families in phalanx talking animately with each other, and, more and more often, even on Presidio hikes there is this one:
Person completely absorbed in his cell phone
This unnatural obstacle will literally walk right into you.  It almost happened to Ciwt three times
today.  As the last one came barreling toward her on a narrow path, she started clapping loudly just as he was about to hit her.  Luckily he heard at the last moment -  and looked up at her with disdain.  Probably because she interrupted his texting.  

Scary but apparently nothing like New York.  Ciwt has a friend there who has fairly compromised knees and back. She's terrified of going out onto the sidewalks and virtually clings to the sides of buildings as she goes along.  No need to explain:  mobs of people, walking a mile a minute, elbowing and jostling each other.  This has been so for decades, but now there are even more people and many of them are the dreaded unnatural cell phone obstacle.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Birds Still Chirp --- Day 6/326

Walk:  Presidio
Distance: 3.3 miles, PT, pedal

Today Ciwt was able to take her first official hike in the Presidio since her accident.  She loved finding someone had attached a"Love" sign to the fencing at the top of the hike in her absence.  Appropriate because the hike goes down "Lover's Lane," the path young soldiers walked from the desolate, barren, windswept Presidio into 'town,' and hopefully a waiting young girlfriend.  The town was named Yerba Buena, many years later to be known as San Francisco.

After months under 'hike arrest,' Ciwt also loved finding dirt is still soft, leaves still rustle and birds still chirp.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Ring Story --- Day 6/325

Walk:  Day well spent with her tech expert on computers (office and car)
Distance: Up/Down with more skill x 3, Kind of forgot to exercise

A little of Ciwt and Susan Brooks* in front of a few of  Susan's magical little creations

So, among the other recent surprises/changes in Ciwt's life was the loss of her favorite ring.  She bought it from a Berkeley craftswoman/artist at least 25 years ago and wore it virtually every day since.  A simply designed gold band - quiet but with so much presence people would remark on it within minutes of saying hello.  Eg, she would go into a store, bank, movie theater, just about her business and someone would say "What a great ring!" or "Is there a story about that ring?" Something like that - consistently, for years.

No story except it was part of Ciwt and she was forlorn when it was gone.  (How is a mystery) . She decided to see if she could locate the artist on line.  This without optimism because staying in business is a challenge for artists everywhere and particularly Bay Artists as the cost of living, including studio prices increases nearly daily.

But there she was!!  Susan Brooks, Painter, Drawer and Hand Fabricator of jewelry!  Not only still in business but going strong and helping other artists along the way by organizing and promoting Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios**.

And there were her rings.  Still handwrought with the 100 year old chasing tools and hammers Susan's father passed on to her when she started her jewelry career - and which give precious metals that incredible presence.

Now it's a ring story with a happy ending. Susan's art, jewelry and more studio is still in Berkeley, she is still making her traditional designs and Ciwt's ring is one of them.  So Ciwt was able to drive (her new car) to the studio, regale Susan with her ring stories, view Susan's expanded collection of creations, pat her on the back for her outstanding artistic and business skills - and buy a replacement ring which again will become part of her.  Let the comments begin.


**Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Hello, Wise Kitty --- Day 6/324

Walk:  Berkeley, TJ's, PT in Presidio. Mostly Driving to Try to understand her new/used car.  She'll               see.  Her tech guy comes tomorrow - usually to work on her home computer, but tomorrow to             help teach her her car
Distance: A few blocks, Major PT

Susan Brooks, Untitled, acrylic on wood

Busy day goes into busy evening for Ciwt so no time to tell you about this artist.  More on her  tomorrow.  Meanwhile you can find her at or Facebook.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Suppose It Didn't --- Day 6/323

Walk:  No, Lots of Phone Calls Coming and Going
Walk:  Up/Down x 2, small PT, yoga and pedaling

The wind was against them now, and Piglet’s ears streamed behind him like banners as he fought his way along, and it seemed hours before he got them into the shelter of the Hundred Acre Wood and they stood up straight again, to listen, a little nervously, to the roaring of the gale among the treetops.
“Supposing a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?”
“Supposing it didn’t,” said Pooh after careful thought.
– A.A. Milne

Monday, January 8, 2018

Whoa!! --- Day 6/322

Walk: No, Rain πŸ˜€
Distance: Just a few blocks, PT session

Laura Sumrall and her horse Wimpys winning World Freestyle Reining TitleA

Ciwt keeps trying to slow her world down.  Alas, she's not as successful as this beautiful horse and rider in their winning "Frozen" routine.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Award Season Begins --- Day 6/321

Walk: Hood
Distance: 1.6 miles, PT

Ciwt is busy eating popcorn and watching the Golden Globes.  You too?

Saturday, January 6, 2018

I, Perplexed --- Day 6/320

Walk: Kabuki Theater (I, Tonya)
Distance: 2 miles, All PT assignments

So Ciwt woke up today with great plans for learning her new car (read: computer), updating all car documents, emailing various people, fixing (as if!) her printer which has stopped printing, making an appointment with a realtor to see a property tomorrow, doing her PT and several other things.

She actually did the PT, made the appointment and a little computer stuff. Then she hit a 2018 wall.  No Callie, Perfect knee gone, Car friend gone, major financial person gone/needing to be replaced, friends with various conditions, people falling including her and now her dinner partner, Alex Trebek.  Too much change!!  Her whole being went frazzled then sort of blank.

So off to stare at the I,Tonya movie and give her saturated mind/being a chance to adjust and renew (or?).

Friday, January 5, 2018

Time Comes (2) --- Day 6/319

Walk: No; too busy test driving possible new car
Distance: A few blocks

Bye, Bye fun, peppy, stick shift car (and more). 

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Time Comes --- Day 6/318

Walk: Hayes Auto, TJoe's
Distance: 3.5 miles, Major PT

Followers of Ciwt know she has remained 'a teenage boy' about cars.  To the limit her budget has allowed she has bought the most fun-to-drive, German cars she could afford.  There have been several BMW's, her present Audi and even a little Porsche once upon a time.  Always with stick shift, even though it has been increasingly difficult to find since she first started driving.

Today her completely honest mechanic advised her not to put more money into her Audi; if she fixes this, she'll soon need to fix that and so on. Unfortunately, he also recommended staying away from German cars.* This advice comes right when Ciwt had been doing her best to block out the fact that her knee really won't be up to pushing a clutch for at least a year πŸ˜’.

So, looks like a 'new' quality used car needs to be in Ciwt's near future.  Car search is daunting enough, but will she heed her good advice and get a non-German, automatic transmission?  If so, it will be the end of a Long era.

* He also suggested not owning a car at all.  With all the car sharing and renting companies as well as Lyft, etc., it makes sense in many ways.  But NOT to that teenage.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Three is an ODD number --- Day 6/317

Walk:  One of those on hold with bureaucracies days
Distance: 0, small PT by Rx and long pedal

So here it is the third day of the year and Ciwt had kind of an odd day.  Then, thinking of odd and three she remembered some paintings...

Francis Bacon, Three Studies of Lucien Freud, 1969, o/c 
Pablo Picasso, Three Dancers, 1925, o/c

Robert Rauschenberg, White Painting (three panel), 1951, o/c


Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Strung Up --- Day 6/316

Walk:  A little
Distance: 9 blocks and Lots of PT
Ken Unsworth (Australia), Suspended Stone Circle II

Ciwt was busy today hanging art at her recently remodeled and repainted club.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Hopeful Beginning --- Day 6/315

Walk: No, Home πŸ’–New Year's Day Stuff
Distance: 0, PT, Pedal