Orchid Show

Cattleya Drumbeat

Anne has been repeating what she had heard at school that they should move the Super bowl to Saturday, so that everyone could party and not have to worry about getting up for work the next day. As it turned out she didn’t have to worry anyway. With the day off and such a beautiful day it was, we headed over to the botanical gardens and its annual orchid show. She deployed with her brand new camera. Her old one had taken a few too many hit points. This one is heftier, has a much bigger zoom, but still fits in her pockets, which was a must. We walked the gardens after the show. Afterwards, we headed to Olio for a late lunch.

Bulbophyllum cumingll

Set in a 1930s Standard Oil gas station, its décor is eclectic. We first discovered this place while biking, but then so did everyone else. On this day, dare I say, late winter or maybe even early spring day, it was pretty empty. We saw Witch Hazel in bloom at the gardens, always one of the first harbingers of spring. The Post’s recommendation was for their King of Kings tahini humus. We ordered that, plus their Jerusalem bagel, which features a sauce of labne, zaatar and pomegranate. It was all so good that we finished this vegan day with a salad. I guess dinner’s blue cheese dressing doesn’t quite qualify as vegan. Whoops!

Leveque Dining Set

On last summer’s westward excursion, we stopped for an afternoon in historic Deadwood, South Dakota. After lunching in a saloon, along Main Street’s strip, we explored the more gentile side of town. The Adams Museum delves into the town’s local history, which during its gold rush days featured such luminaries as Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane. In this museum we saw the pictured oak and walnut dining set, which was built in the 1930s by Anthime Leveque. Anne took these photos, because they reminded her of quilt designs.

Anthime Leveque emigrated from Quebec and at fourteen, began to work for the Home Stake Mining Company in nearby Lead, SD. He worked there his entire life. During his last twenty years of employment, he made furniture with a process called marquetry, a technique using small wood pieces to create surface decorations. Most woodwork of this kind uses thin layers of veneer. Leveque’s pieces are a full quarter-inch thick. His most ambitious set consisted of a quarter million pieces. This set of table and chairs includes a mere 4,500 section.

Sunrise — Sunset

Pictured is our new tablecloth. Anne just made it. It is reversible and is made of batik. This batik fabric is from Indonesia, making it authentic and as near as we can tell is made with a non-repeating pattern of at least 18 feet worth. Batik is a technique of wax-resistant cloth dyeing. The wax resists the dyes and allows fabric to be selectively colored by soaking the cloth in one color, removing the wax with boiling water and repeating if multiple colors are desired. Anne combined red and blue fabrics to make this tablecloth. It certainly is colorful. We immediately put it on the dining room table, giving me the chance to wash the gingerbread crumbs out of the red one. 

After a dreary last half of the week, today dawned brightly. Anne had had the foresight to draw the blinds last night, after our night of partying, otherwise we would have been awoken at dawn. Taking advantage of the warm weather, we walked over to Maplewood, Maple-hood, Maple-weird to finish up our holiday shopping (I hope) and get a little exercise to boot. The air was alive with the sound of leaf blowers. as people were trying to blow-dry all of their wet leaves. We saw a car that was covered with license plates, including the holy grail of the license plate game, Hawaii. This gives Anne her second victory of the year, just in time for our upcoming road trip. I snagged a latte at Foundation Grounds and Anne chatted up a couple of her school friends. After shopping we trudged home, with a backpack full of loot.