August 2013

At what point in my life would I have imagined my August 2013 calendar would have looked like this???

Marcus

 

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somethin’ for sittin’

…(and nappin’) in the fine mountain air.

Kind of a funny place to plant roses, under the only covered part of our front courtyard.
So Brian and Natasza volunteer to take the roses home…
And we have that rose bed paved over.

A month or so later, Craig’s List Reno NV sez:

Futons are on sale at K-Mart, — $89 without mattress. But they’re kinda cheesy, so I thought I’d give Craig’s List a shot. Jason’s apartment was so full of furniture — from a friend who moved — he could hardly walk around and decided he had to get rid of the futon.

So his fortune became my fortune. Later that day, after a shout-out to Brian to help me with his truck…

The futon found a home on our front courtyard.

The preparation and thinking about our front courtyard took weeks and months, but actual getting the futon happened very quickly. Monday after dinner, we were able to sit and relax and watch the sunset. We were treated to these amazing clouds, something we would have surely missed had we not a comfy place to sit.

It’s 7:30pm. The sun — as usual — sets in the west. Our courtyard is on the east side of the house, so we don’t see the actual sunset; we see the effects of the sunset.

Walking

Artists that came across my phone iPod while walking along the Truckee River yesterday morning.

I follow this path along the Truckee River starting and ending in Mayberry Park. Something over two miles, about 45 minutes.

Bruce Springstein
Lucinda Williams
Thelonious Monk — the small group, not the band, though I have the band
Neil Young
Stan Kenton — Yes, from his album Cuban Fire
Bob Dylan
Macy Gray

I like the stuff on my iPod. Sometimes I think about loading new stuff, but I love what I have and I have enough in variety and quantity that I don’t tire of it. The last thing that I downloaded was Stan Kenton.

Near the western end of the path. The river is pretty shallow and runs fast making wonderful water music.

ARTOWN :: RENO NV

A little rain, a little wind, a lot of joy at Artown opener

Some great fun was had by yours truly. I needed to see what a free event at Wingfield Park was like. Were there traffic jams? [No] What’s the parking like? [I snagged a place on the street, but was plenty lucky to do so. There are plenty of parking garages around.] Can I take a folding chair and sit and see? [Yes, but of course the best spots go early.] What’s the weather like at 8pm when today’s high was 101°? [Very pleasant in a polo shirt and shorts… a light breeze.] Is there food? [Yes, see story] Port-a-potties with short or no lines? [Yes] I didn’t stay for the whole deal, but I’m glad I went and I’ll be back./m

The stage at Wingfield Park. You can almost see the rapids of the Truckee River on the right.
The crowd. On the opposite side at the bottom of that tall building is the Great Basin Community Food Coop.

The following is excerpted from an RGJ story by Katrina Raenell. A link to the Artown web site and calendar of events is at the end of this posting.

Front page of the RGJ


Relief from the 105-degree heat wave burst over Wingfield Park with strong winds and pelting rain.

Blankets and umbrellas scat­tered along the grass as the gather­ing crowd took refuge under trees and bobbing river swimmers rushed under bridges.

The opening night of Artown had fallen under the shadow of a rain­storm.

“A little rain isn’t going to stop me,” a passerby said. “Give it five minutes. It’s Reno.”

As the rain dwindled, the people began to pour over the bridge and park entrances into the park.

They came with chairs, coolers and Pink Floyd “Dark Side of the Moon” T-shirts. The mood was light, friendly, and the crowd buzzed about the upcoming perfor­mances from Reno band Jelly Bread and the “Return to the Dark Side of the Moon” musicians.

Kelsey “J” Rosser said she has attended Artown every year for about 10 years and she was excited to see the “Return to the Dark Side of the Moon.” She said she didn’t care how hot it was, she wasn’t go­ing to miss the opening of Artown for anything. “Reno’s art community has grown so much over the past five years,” Rosser said. “I don’t know what to expect from this year’s Artown, but I think it will probably be bigger than in the past.”

The searing heat of the day was comfortably cooled by the time Jelly Bread took the stage.

To an opening set of upbeat funk-jam, the crowd settled into a rhythm of its own with bobbing heads, tapping feet and children spinning in circles. On the outskirts of the crowd, Barbara Rodriguez had just arrived to the fest and was enjoying listening to the band. “These guys have a groovy vibe,” Rodriguez said.

Set up to feed the masses was barbecue restaurant Men Wielding Fire, and Little Jimmy’s Italian Ice. James Hinkel of Little Jimmy’s was invited to participate in Artown last minute and was looking forward to opening night of the festival.

“I’ve traveled all over, and I’ve never known a community to do something so culturally sound for a whole month,” Hinkel said. “This event involves every aspect of culture and arts.”

A trippy, slow moving heartbeat filled the air as Dark Side took the stage with heavy rhythm and instrumentals.

Nora Hendryx joined the musicians on the stage and harmonized her vocals with the music as it began to build in tempo. The first riff of Pink Floyd’s “Breathe” began, and the crowd cheered and sang along.

ARTOWN is Reno’s July Art and Culture Festival. For nearly two decades, Artown has brought together local and global talent to promote and showcase the arts through a mostly free or low cost month-long festival.
I could go on and on, but go ahead and check out renoisartown  for the calendar, events, mission statement and so on and on. Who knew. Last year we had just arrived in town and didn’t know nothin’. Now we know.

http://www.renoisartown.com/events/

A Good Front

After a year in Reno, we felt it was about time we made our house our own.

The day we were moving in — moving truck in the driveway, boxes strewn everywhere — our new neighbor came over insisting that he show me how to turn on our lawn sprinkler. He screwed it up royally and we experienced a river running down the east side of our property. My turn to insist: TURN EVERYTHING OFF.

About a week later, our mailbox key was ready and the first letter we received at our new address was a letter from Sierra Canyon Association saying that our lawn was all brown and we have 30 days to tell them what we’re going to do about it. The letter was about six weeks old.

The next week, I paid a guy from the next village $25 bucks to properly turn on our sprinkler system. Hey, we lived in a San Francisco flat with no grass the previous 20 years, do we really need grass in the desert? But we vowed to live here a year and experience our new house before ripping anything out.

Our sprinklers at work on Sunday morning.

About 10 months later, a LivingSocial Deal offered $1000 worth of landscape work for $250. Carol was on that like white on rice. We really didn’t renege on our vow, because the work didn’t get started until late June.

This is what we did…

The front yard landscape plan.

Out with the grass. On my morning walks, I have admired and photographed many xeriscaped front yards. As it turns out, the yard directly across the street from us is one we like a lot. When we talked to Frank, our landscape guy, we went and looked at that.

our front lawn
Our front xeriscape. The plants will grow and cover that area.

Continue reading “A Good Front”