Laumeier Sculpture Park

Deer, Tony Tasset, 2015

Look, Dear. Yes, Dear? Oh, Dear! Instead of walking around the neighborhood, as has been our wont, we ventured out to Laumeier Sculpture Park for our steps today. We got there early enough to avoid the maddening crowd. Pictured is a new piece that also symbolizes the big deer population problem that this area has. In the background is the park’s signature artwork, The Way. Perspective plays tricks here with the apparent sizes of people and objects in the photo. The deer is much bigger than Anne, but not as big as it looks here and The Way, at three stories tall, is not as small as it looks here either.

We had fun exploring the park and in addition to the art, we experienced wildlife too. We saw a Cooper’s hawk getting dive bombed by a crow and heard a Bard owl calling out, “Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you?” Also, there were numerous Cardinals out singing. We even saw a Bluebird, our state bird.

Recess, Geoffrey Krawzyck, 2014

Another relatively new artwork that we saw is called, Recess, by Geoffrey Krawzyck. At first sight, it is a little underwhelming. It is a newly constructed ruin of a brick building. Only the front façade and side walls are still standing, but on closer examination many of the red bricks have inscriptions etched into them, often with interesting sayings: STL ♥ Baseball; STL is the most culturally rich city per capita in America; Bricks as bones, still standing stones Where husks of dreams lament a reverie of reliquaries line the avenues of hope.

Grotto of the Sleeping Bear, Mark Dion, 1997

The final new to us artwork is an actual ruin, the remains of the property’s stone spring house, from back before this site was a park and still private property. In its day, the spring house was a place to cool off from the notoriously hot Saint Louis summers, in the days before air conditioning. It used an artisanal spring to make natural refrigeration. The artist Mark Dion has repurposed this structure as the Grotto of the Sleeping Bear, complete with a life like bear, in repose. Dion also has an exhibit inside one of the park’s museum, but that is currently closed.

Life in the New Normal

I’ve taken to texting the boys on an almost daily basis now. The last time, I was rewarded with these photos from Dave. He and Maren had escaped the confines of Boston and had driven down to the cape, where they found plenty of space in which to distance themselves with. Unlike Fort Lauderdale, it looks like they had the beach pretty much to themselves.

5 Boroughs Pandemic Map

Dan meanwhile is living in the hot zone. He sent me this map that was current as of yesterday morning. He lives in the red ring that covers most of Brooklyn. He lives across the street from an Orthodox Jewish community center. Looking out his front window, he could see a crowd had gathered there. First the Shul police tried to break up the gathering and then NYPD rolled up. Dan and Brit have been holed up together, subsisting on takeout and delivery. He has kind of lucked out this department. First a pizza order got screwed up and they got four free pizzas for the price of one. Likewise, a breakfast order was delivered twice. Can you say second breakfast?

Meanwhile, back on the farm, Anne and I went out for our daily constitutional. Then Anne attended another virtual gyrotonics class. I went for a bike ride. For a change, there was not a cloud in the sky, although it was pretty windy, so this marvelous weather won’t last very long. The park was pretty crowded, but not too. With the zoo and all of the museums shuttered, there were fewer people in the park than such a fine day would normally garner. Only the restrooms and the golf courses are still open. There were lots of flowers out, including the redbud, which is in full bloom. Two of those large flashing highway signs, the kind that normally tell you which lane ahead is closed, had been installed. Their message was, “Six Feet Apart Folks.” They could have turned them off though, for all of the effect that they appeared to be having. I didn’t use the bike path, but kept to the roads, which allowed me my space. 

The Male Must Go Thru

Tired, but Pleased – Anne after the Reef Bay Hike

How is everyone doing? Are you bearing up? Have you gone stir crazy yet? I’m doing fine, but then I have Anne to bolster my spirits. If there was only one person who you could be stranded with on a desert island, it would be her. She is a rock, plus she really rocks! This photo of her was taken on the boat ride back to Cruz Bay, after our four hour ranger led hike. We were both a little tired and sunburned, but we were also both very pleased with ourselves.

She has been keeping herself very busy during this duration. Today, we mailed out some more of her DIY face masks. This allotment was being sent to the nurses who cared for her mother in her final days. In order to minimize our exposure at the post office, we went online and printed out the package’s postage label. That way at the post office, all we had to do was drop it off and then dash. First thing though we had to weigh the package. She has this super accurate digital scale that she uses to weigh her yarn with. Unfortunately, its batteries were dead, but fortunately, I found two CR2032 disk batteries in the basement. Normally, I stock them, because our bikes’ computers uses them. Unfortunately, Anne couldn’t get the old batteries out of the scale. Fortunately, I hit upon the idea of using a knife. Unfortunately, I kind of elbowed Anne out of the way to get them out. Can you see where this is going?

Once weighed, Anne had to create a USPS account and then jump through its hoops to get the shipping label printed. I think that this took two tries. I was on the couch by then, but I could hear the stream of four-letter words emanating from the computer room and every time that I offered to help, their intensity only redoubled. Anyway, she got the job done, without my help or maybe even in spite of it. By then though high noon was drawing nigh and we had to beat feet in order to get to the post office in time before it closed.

Stopping to talk with the neighbors, probably didn’t help, but we made it to the post office in plenty of time. At the post office was a new sign that asked that only one patron at a time enter the lobby. So, we waited outside. When it was our turn, Anne dashed inside, dropped her package off on the counter and then dashed right back out again. I waited outside and applied hand sanitizer on her. It started to rain on the way back and our walk was cut short, but at least we got the face masks mailed and I helped!