Monthly Archives: October 2008

Obama time

As I was planning to attend the Obama rally at the Arch today, I dreamt about it last night, and the scene I still recall is being in the early sunny morning in a dale with a small east-flowing river and fields for a distance away from it before the woods on either side, with a golden morning-hazy view far to the east, and way out there the rally was happening, and for some reason we were stuck back where we were to watch it, but I could still see Obama through binoculars, so it worked out; it’s unclear why we had to be so far back when much of the intervening land was desolate. At any rate, I did IRL get to the Obama rally, which was pretty sweet (and I was closer in than in the dream, though Obama was still a bit difficult to see, so it was good he was wearing a white shirt), and was thus part of an I think record-breaking crowd?

mountain winds

Coupla scenes from a 12h sleep:

  • I was with my parents hiking on a partly wooded, partly open west-facing mountainside in Switzerland, with another slope rising up nearby from the other side of the valley; I think the trees had lost their leaves, and there might have been some snow on the ground, but the temperature was mild. We were walking north more or less along a contour. Ahead of us, cloudy air was rising perpendicularly away from the slope and swirling into a curved wall of gray cloud overhead. To the southwest, it was slightly brighter, but not direct sun. Then suddenly the wind changed to blowing sharply downslope, and we had to avoid some shrubby branches that were blown down from the ridge.
  • Some WU friends and I got in line, outside, to get Saturday brunch at Mission; there were two lines, and they were both long, but one of the lines was getting carded in at an outside station (on the west side of the hill) and the other was getting carded in inside and was moving faster, so we got into the latter one and went right on in. It was an overcast day. The interior of the dining hall was dark wood, more like RL Driscoll, and was rather cavernous, with the food stations really spread out and not that much daylight around despite a large window area, because of the dark walls.

cliff cabin

Two nights ago, during a 14h sleep:

  • I was in a cabin-sized shelter atop a very high cliff dropping off toward the south, with a couple other people; the shelter was open toward the cliff edge, which it was only a few feet away from. Then there was a middle-aged guy wearing a parachute who jumped off the cliff and floated around with the parachute. It was late afternoon and quite brisk and windy.
  • I found a small gourmet cut of steak au jus in a clear, hermetically sealed plastic package in the pages of the Encyclopedia Americana, included as, I guess, a “live illustration” of the accompanied article. I tasted a bit of the steak (despite the encyclopedia being 20 years old, the steak looked fine) and it was tasty, but I knew that any more than a single taste would probably give me indigestion, so I passed it off to somebody else to check out (and/or eat).
  • Upstairs in our house in NH, a renovation had been done, to open the whole area horizontally and vertically, so that all the roof angles were now visible and lots of nice light was coming in all round; the northern part of the space had rounded vertical soft-wood moldings on jutting wall corners and columns, so that there were no sharp corners to be pained by. I remarked, since those were a later idea, that this was a great example of adaptation toward optimal design over a period of time (like Chris Alexander’s idea of unfolding).

Last night: the one image really sticking in my mind is that I was in an old house in Peterborough, in the pantry next to the kitchen, which had a “root cellar” underneath that was really a shallow (~1′ deep) chamber just below the floor that was covered with hatches made of spaced square wood slats, so that you could see into it, and lined with the same kind of wood, a rich, orange-shaded kind. There was direct, clear sunlight (like that hitting me right now IRL) shining into the root cellar from the west window (the room was maybe 12′ N-S and only about 4′ E-W, and there was a door and a window on the west side and an opening into the kitchen on the south side), and it lit up the wood gorgeously, especially when I held a blank white piece of paper next to it to catch the sun more intensely. This gives me some material ideas for my studio project.