“One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” -- Henry Miller
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Parts Unknown

Phix's Curiosity: what sparks my interest

Watch this space to see what's sparked my interest this week.  A random grab bag of delights!

calligraphy messSo M2 has a homework assignment for her health class to set a goal to do something.  Her goal is to learn more about calligraphy, so she set up a five week lesson plan for herself and we sit down most nights and do some calligraphy together.  That's been fun.  It's always interesting to see how the ink flows through different nibs, and how the ink reacts with different types of paper, as well as the eternal question - am I going to remember which letter I am trying to create!  Sometimes I get caught up in the motion of the letters that I make nonsense letters. 

One of the things that we plan on doing is some illumination.  One of the things that a lot of people don't know is that while monks get all the credit for writing up books prior to the invention of the Gutenberg press, way earlier, St. Brigid in Ireland had started a school of art (and also metalwork) that was renowned for its teaching of lettering and illuminations. I love that it was a woman who set the school up... If I'm not careful, I can totally rabbit-hole on looking at old manuscripts, I mean - check it out... Stuff like this is utterly fascinating to me.  

That said, when we were in Ireland a few years ago, we had the opportunity to see the Trinity College Library's exhibit of the Book of Kells.  The exhibit was really well done.  And... honestly, I like looking at the digital repro of the Book of Kells on my iPad more than seeing the book in person.  Because of its age and fragility, it's in a glass case, there are swarms of people around it, and after the brilliance of the exhibit, it's underwhelming.  In terms of looking at manuscripts (even ones in glass cases!), I found the Chester Beatty Library in Dublin actually way more accessible and interesting (and free!).  Don't get me wrong - I'd go back and look at either exhibit, just if I'm going to look at manuscripts, I'd go to Chester Beatty to look at the manuscripts and enjoy the exhibits from both the Chester Beatty Library and the Trinity College Library... and enjoy the Book of Kells on my iPad (also available from the Trinity College Library's digital repository since y'all don't have my iPad...). :D

Medusa's Garden

When you need every one and everything around you to just stop.

Soooo, yeahhhh, I missed last week's newsletter.  I had The Best intentions of writing it before I ran off to a retreat in the Santa Cruz mountains last week and... it... sorta... didn't... happen... Oops!  By the time I realized I'd forgotten, I was outside of range of any consistent-ish data/Wi-Fi access and it just wasn't going to happen.  Sometimes one has to let go of what we thought we were going to accomplish. 

I'm not a traveler by nature - certainly not two trips so close back to back, but slowly I'm learning. The most brilliant thing I've learned in the last couple years is that when I go somewhere that I take a 'recovery' or 'settling back in' day when I return home to do a slow 're-entry'.  This helps so much to give me a chance to shift gears and prepare for reality to kick in again. 
The view outside my window.


Ariadne's Yarn: playing with threads

What I'm up to with fiber and possibly how mythology and stories all tie together.

One of the lovely things about the retreat was (incidentally) connecting with other people who knit and do stuff with yarn. I love the different ways in which we do things, and the little tips that cross across our practices as we knit away.  I'm looking forward to seeing what sorts of inspiration and patterns I end up with.  :)

Mythic Librarian: the art of arranging a life 

Thoughts on ontology and ways to organize a life.

Reflecting on the last few weeks, and organizing a life, even though it was a lot of travel back to back, I wouldn't trade any of it in.  In fact, it makes me wish that I had more opportunity to travel for the fun of it.  There's something delightful and freeing about seeing new things and especially when you get to settle in somewhere beautiful with people who turn out to be birds of a feather.  It would be totally different if I had to travel for work.  That's not the kind of travel I'm after, but the joy in being able to release the worries of 'have to' and let time take it's merry time and everything works out just fine?  Such a delight!

All of which to say, in organizing a life, make time for joyful travel. Make time to step away from the routine and the mundane, and allow yourself to be transported in time and space to new places, people, and experiences.  Make a point of it.  It's good for the soul!

Yes. The pictures in this space are pictures of all the libraries I saw. 😜

With love, and structure, and organization, and curiosity - may Ariadne's ball of yarn guide you through the labyrinth safely until next time!


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