Sunday, July 27, 2014

A Gauzy Dress in a Distant Land

I stared long and hard at these old photos.  Are they still relevant?  Do I dare post them?  Or should I copy them to my archival picture folder?  Use up more memory to store a past that is becoming more blurry with each passing year.

But, oh, look at that dress.  How I loved that flowy gauzy dress.  Whatever happened to it?  And whatever happened to that young woman who wore it?  She wore that dress five days in a row when she and her young travel buddy zipped around Cyprus in a little Honda Civic.

That woman is me.  Or is she?

Do I recognize her?  Her face is unlined.  Her mop of hair is a rich natural dark brown.  She is strong and fearless and so full of hope for a future not yet lived.

But, yes, I do recognize her.  I remember that moment so clearly--looking out at the setting sun, high up in the Troodos Mountains.  She made a decision that evening and it did not come lightly.  I am ready, she thought.  I am ready to be a mother.  One year later in a small hospital in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, her first son was born.
It makes me realize a dress can be so much more than a few yards of fabric covering a naked body.  A dress can mark eventful dates.  It can symbolize celebration and in this case, a life-altering decision.  In that gauzy dress that evening in 1985, that young woman became me.

Sharing with my friends at Visible Monday.  Patti, as well as other bloggers who have linked to her site, have written so honestly and eloquently about age.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Mimi Shops Whole Foods

Leave it to Mimi to home in on this colorful summer maxi dress in the middle of a grocery store.  Not only that, but it was 30% off.  Can you imagine finding a bargain at Whole Foods?  She's too much!!!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Mosaics of Paphos

World Heritage Sites

The one good thing about being "grounded" this summer is the opportunity to continue my scanning project.  Over the past couple of years I have scanned thousands of travel slides into my computer.  So many of them are faded and even corrupted that I have burst into tears upon viewing them.   Even so, I find this task a rewarding one.  I relive each wonderful trip as I go through them, box by box.  Some of the slides I never even looked at after taking them.  It was simply too much of a bother.   The digital age of photography, however, has changed all this.  Today I plug in my SD card and voila, I can relive a trip painlessly and as often as I want.  I can share my photos with family and friends and other travel junkies through this blog.  And oh my!  Today's pictures are so much more vibrant!

The fading of my Cyprus slides have given these mosaics a sepia tone, but it seems appropriate for this particular "slide show".  After all, these gorgeous floors are 16 centuries old.   Enjoy!

These mosaics were discovered by accident on the island of Cyprus by a farmer plowing his field in 1962.  Their rarity and beauty were apparent immediately and it did not take long before UNESCO added them to their World Heritage List.   They covered the floors of four villas; the House of Dionysus being the largest of them.  The mosaics depict many scenes from Greek Mythology, but there are hunting scenes and geometric designs, as well.  We noted with interest the swastika next to the Star of David.  In the 3rd-5th centuries these designs were simply that--designs with no symbolic meaning.

These mosaic floors are considered the finest in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Monday, July 21, 2014

A White Linen Suit

I bought this Flax jacket in Kansas City and the Habitat skirt in Avila Beach, California, miles and years apart.   All this time I wore them as separates with jeans and tees.   This summer, for the first time,  I realize they match--buttons and all.   Now I have a brand new suit.  Love it when I discover something new in my very own closet!

Linking with Mis Papelicos.  The theme this week is White--so perfect for summer!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

French Lingerie

I bought my first lacy bra and pantie set in a tiny hole-in-the-wall shop in Paris, way back in 1981.  The woman took my measurements and lovingly brought out, one by one, the most delicate, the most beautiful lingerie I had ever seen.  I wore those pieces until they literally fell apart from wear.  Since then, I have amassed quite a collection.

"Ooh-la-la, they make me feel so pretty," Mimi said.  And that's the whole point.

The thing about lingerie is that no one sees it but you.  It's precisely that secrecy that makes it so appealing.  I can be wearing jeans and a sweatshirt, but underneath I have a lacy black and purple bra on.  I still feel feminine, sexy, a bit mysterious and oh so young (very important at my age!).

I am lucky to have a wonderful lingerie shop only blocks from my house--Purrmission in Santa Barbara.  The women who work there are knowledgeable, discreet and very kind.  My husband and I take detours to drive by their provocative windows whenever we are out and about.  I get a lot of gift certificates from there!
French Lingerie.  The secret to a happy marriage!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

A French Festival in Santa Barbara

I used to do the "festival trail" every summer when my boys were little.  These international food festivals ran every weekend all summer long, but I finally got burned out.  I'm sorry, but I wanted to go to the real France, the real Greece and the real Italy.  And so I did.  But twenty years later, I find myself unable to travel for awhile and I'm getting really, really depressed because of it.  Last weekend, Mimi scolded me.  "You can either sit around and feel sorry for yourself or get out into the world again.  And so what if that world is only two blocks from your house?  They've got hats and shoes and dresses and baquettes with brie!"

She's right, of course.  If hats and shoes and dresses and baquettes smothered with brie don't cheer me up, well . . . it's time for Prozac.

I spent Sunday afternoon roaming around the French Market, listening to music, eating, watching Polynesian dancers, eating, buying a beret and eating.  By the time evening rolled around, I was two pounds heavier, but no longer feeling so blue.  Being grounded forces you to take a fresh new look at your own home town.  Besides being a beautiful place to live, there is something going on every weekend.  Often for free.

In two weeks, there's going to be a Greek Festival.  Then there's Old Spanish Days.  I am surrounded by  a vibrant, cultural world.  There's no need to hop on a plane and fly 3,000 miles away.  

"And just think of all the money you're saving," Mimi said.  "That means you can buy more clothes."

 Oh, yeah.  Now, I'm happy.