Friday, January 8, 2010


I would love to update you on what I've been doing for the past week, but it makes my head spin. No really, I'm serious, my head literally HAS been SPINNING. I also feel like I'm coming down with the flu periodically (I don't think I am. But maybe I am. Or not), and I burst a blood vessel in my right eye. Literally BURST it, and the last time I did that was when I had a terrible cough, but I don't have a cough now.

It's very very very cold outside, and we're the type of travellers who like to walk a lot, well... except for Master CB who hates to walk aimlessly. But then again, he finds most of the things we do to be "lame" and he often describes things I do as being "an epic fail." I couldn't walk any more yesterday afternoon, so I retired home for a nap, Master CB took up residence in front of the TV watching some sports, and Mister CB soldiered on through the streets of NYC with his ever-cheerful companion Miss CB who MIRACULOUSLY does not feel the cold as much as we do. Might have something to do with the new camera she bought 2 days ago from this shop. She even attended a night workshop on light-shots (or something like that) which allowed her to make a couple of new friends who ran around and moved torches so that she could photograph them.

One thing we did which we ALL (yes ALL 4 of us) agreed was superb was eating lunch at the Dogmatic. It was recommended by bb, who actually sent us a list of great list of ideas which we are slowly and ecstatically working our way through. Another bb recommendation may well have contributed to my eyeball spontaneously bursting!! I literally did not see anything in that shop which I didn't love (including the price), and it's the first shop in which we LOST Mister CB because he saw something he loved and just took off after it, returning to us with a bag of loot and a happy grin.

But before all of this happened we drove up to Boston in a blizzard, yes, a blizzard. The nav system which came with the rental car predicted the exact time we'd arrive, plus it notified us of traffic congestion ahead and took us on detours. Mister CB drove while I sat quietly, white-knuckled with fear and repeating to myself silently "Keep to the right, keep to the right." We then spent a lot of time with my brother and his beautiful family, which included tramping through the snow to the local hill where a lot of sledding was undertaken. An aside - sledding is actually scarier than I thought, and I found myself standing at the top of the hill suffering VERTIGO, even though a THREE year old was rushing up and down that MOUNTAIN over and over and over again. When I finally pushed off it was exhilarating, but it took me a good HALF HOUR to psych myself into doing it.

On the way back to NYC we stopped for the night at the Connecticut home of an old friend of mine. S and I first met in Providence RI (where Miss CB was born) at a "New Mothers' Group" at the local Jewish Community Centre. Meeting again was the easiest and happiest experience, and to our immense delight my 2 kids immediately clicked with her 3 kids. Oh the joy of seeing my Miss CB with S's son, both now 18, laughing and talking together. S's son attends Choate School and he invited Miss CB to come with him to have breakfast there (many of his friends are boarders) and then attend "the best English class ever." Meanwhile S and I wandered around a high-school the likes of which I have never before seen. Imagine the most magnificent setting in which to learn, then double it by, oh, I don't know, infinity. That's Choate. Sigh.

We did a lot of other stuff, but my head is spinning again. I promise to post more photos and details, but for now I'm off to have another lie-down. I need to rest up for our visit to bb's home this afternoon.

Did you hear that? I'm going to bb's house for dinner tonight!!!!!!

To quote Miss CB - "I can't believe we're going to Tuvalu today."


RW said...

This is a great post.
Your enthusiasm is clearly evident.
I am sorry about the vertigo. I went through that in December, it is a tad distressing at times.

So, excited for your dinner date tonight.

Anonymous said...

If at all possible my head's spinning more than yours.
The excitement.
Have TONS of fun!
Tuvalu ROCKS, because of a certain bird family.

Tuli said...

I can't wait to experience Tuvalu through your eyes.

I'm so excited for both you and bb.

And Miss CB - it sounds as if she's just as excited as the rest of us are for you.

Anonymous said...

I have tasked bb with giving you a hug from me. Please report on the success of her mission.

Your assignment, Mr. Phel--, er, Eleanor, should you choose to accept it, is to give bb a hug from me.

Hugs all around. Yes. My work here is done.

Susan L (lily40au) said...

All I read was the vertigo and I couldn't read any more. I get that too and had a bout yesterday ... nowhere near as bad as my last bout in July before I went overseas but bad enough to get my husband to drive me to the doctor's, bucket and all, to get some more medication (anti-nausea travel sickness stuff) to stop the vomiting. I really feel for you ... but have a great time anyway. I know I never like to let it stop me travelling.

Mary said...

Despite the vertigo this is the BEST post -

although I might be a little sick with jealousy about the camera, the sledding, the snow, the shopping and tuvalu....

Stomper Girl said...

I'm glad you were brave and went sledding! I can't wait to hear about Tuvalu.

tut-tut said...

sounds very exciting, all around!

MsCellania said...

Wow, I didn't know you'd be posting so am playing catch-up here.
You all are having such a great time -- and the icing on the cake, getting to meet the bb's, et al!!!
Envious here - pea green.
Very, very sweet that you got to meet up with friends and family too - harrowing blizzard driving and all.
Enjoy every minute of your winter-in-summertime trip!
(Any thoughts on coming to Colorado?!)

Barrett Bonden said...

Just thought you might like to know I'm about a week away from applying the info about be-studded hairdressers and I've been keeping my eye open. The hair is not only spiky but always, always, black

Since there's a good deal of cinephile interest on your blog I wondered if you'd be interested in a comment which conclusively proves the truth of the auteur theory advanced by French critics in the fifties and which allowed Bud Boetticher (director of the Randolph Scott series of oaters) to leave briefly the furnace he was tending in an apartment block for a living and pirouette for a further quarter-of-an-hour in the spotlight. It could be an Australian first even though you're not in Australia.

Julia said...

That camera is so cool. Might Miss CB post pictures on your blog just to show us what it can do?

After you sledded and got over being scared, did you want to go again? Every year when I get home from being terrified by the big hills (such as the Alps, for instance), I go from being grateful I survived that last descent to deeply wishing that I could try again. Human psychology is so odd, truly. (Or maybe it is just me ;-)

Hope the head feels better soon!

Barrett Bonden said...

AUTEUR THEORY - BLOGGER PROVES IT TO BE TRUE In 1952, when I was 17, I went to the cinema with my granny (then in her mid-eighties and in her prime) and my uncle and saw a supporting film called "Duel at Silver Creek" starring Audie Murphy, Steve McNally and Faith Domergue. Hands up anyone who remembers any of them? I was a regular cinemagoer in those days and I came away with a special impression of that film. It had a humdrum western plot (Sheriff faced with hoodlums finds his sight is going), its stars were workaday at best and yet the story was filmed economically, dramatically and - as it turned out - memorably. Years went by and I moved down to London where, among other things, I joined the British Film Institute, took some of their courses and learned more about film-making. From time to time memories of DASC returned and I wondered who had directed it. Easy these days, less so then given that it wasn't a well-known film. On the offchance I called the BFI library and was delighted to find they kept their info on cards, which meant cross-referencing was possible. The director was Don Siegel who has an excellent record with action films and who was resurrected by one of his admirers, Clint Eastwood, to direct several of CE's films.

The auteur theory offers the belief that good directors leave a recognisable thumprint on the films they make and this can often be tracked in their most modest works, as with Bud Boetticher. The point about this anecdote is that events occurred the right way round. I didn't set out knowing that Don Siegel was a good director and thereafter make subjective judgements on his films; instead I recognised the thumbprint of someone who at the time was unknown to me and subsequently this proved to be evidence (the "spoor" if you like) of a good director. The auteur theory is often pooh-poohed, especially by Hollywood money men, but I think it's a worthwhile yardstick for those who take films seriously (well, not all that seriously).