Golden Lucy's Spiral Journal

Going on 87...Savoring and Surviving the Senior Years

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Every Picture Tells a Story...The Groom's Dinner

I've been trying to put together a picture story of Ben and Teresa's wedding celebrations. It's been very frustrating. First, I'm totally overwhelmed by the number of photos I have to work with---and these are not the professional proofs. It boggles my mind. I remember when finding a few good shots on a roll of 12-36 was a happy surprise---and that only after waiting days for the prints to come back from processing. Now I feel like I'm trying to claw my way out of a silo inexorably filling up with grain. (I saw that once in a movie---scary!)

Then, there's the story concept problem. I have this thing about not wanting to trot out the family photos and expect folks to find them--and my literal, blow-by-blow narration fascinating or entertaining. You know: "And here's Shlomie's Uncle Irving with Irene Plotnik. They sat next to us at the table." (Although I've personally begun to find this kind of thing strangely interesting, I fear it's a sign of my decline.)

Thus, I've decided to choose photos that instead of telling the literal story of the wedding, reflect thoughts and reactions. Perhaps random, perhaps frivolous but more interesting---at least to me. I think I'll start with the hat.

Carole wore a vintage pillbox hat to the groom's dinner last Friday. I can't imagine why. Just cussedness I think, as she knew nobody else would. In any case, by the end of the evening nearly everybody had worn the hat for at least a minute or two..
It seemed everyone wanted a turn and used it as an excuse to act sillier than they already were----which increased my enjoyment of the evening as I love having fun at the expense of others.

Yup. The hat was fun but Teresa's grandpa, Tata Jesse wins the prize for most impressive "headgear." Just look at that hair! Que Hombre! There's no doubt where the Avila women get those impressive tresses. However, hats and hair notwithstanding, I thought everyone looked wonderful---as long as they were laughing. More grinners to follow on separate post.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Always a Party

On the 3rd day Lucy rested. On the 5th day Lucy created a blog. These things take time, you know. Hello my friends, and forgive me for my absence.

Ben and Teresa's wedding celebration ran joyously and frenetically from last Thursday's Girls' Night Out to Monday's Wet and Wild White Water Wedding Rafting on the Arkansas River. I'll let you guess which I attended.) In any case, I've done enough hootin' and hollering in the past week to last me until the next family wedding---I should only live that long.

The wedding itself was held Saturday---all day and all night. What do I remember? Not much. My first Bloody Mary at the reception was huuge and deelicious! But after the two flutes of champane things got fuzzy. I remember some good-looking guy asked me to dance. I replied, "Of course, Sir!" but I'm not sure what happened after that. I think somebody took me home before I got ahold of the lamp shade. Lucy is such a party animal. However I have to admit it. I was the party-pooper Granny. Teresa's grandmothers both partied on until the end.

I'll be sharing some observations and anecdotes during the next few days. But more interestingly, I'll post lots of fun photos---naturally none of me that aren't flagrantly flattering.

PS: I hope everyone enjoyed Blogher '06!

Monday, July 31, 2006

Until Manana...

Inspired by Diane aka Mrs. DOF I present:
An actual letter sent to a man named Ryan DeVries by the
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Quality, State of Pennsylvania.
This guy's response is hilarious, but read the State's letter before you get
to the response letter.

SUBJECT: DEQ File No.97-59-0023; T11N; R10W, Sec. 20; Lycoming County

Dear Mr. DeVries:
It has come to the attention of the Department of Environmental Quality
that there has been recent unauthorized activity on the above referenced
parcel of property. You have been certified as the legal landowner and/or
contractor who did the following unauthorized activity:

Construction and maintenance of two wood debris dams across the outlet
stream of Spring Pond. A permit must be issued prior to the start of this type of activity. A review of the Department's files shows that no permits have been issued.

Therefore, the Department has determined that this activity is in violation
of Part 301, Inland Lakes and Streams, of the Natural Resource and
Environmental Protection Act, Act 451 of the Public Acts of 1994, being
sections 324.30101 to 324.30113 of the Pennsylvania Compiled Laws,

The Department has been informed that one or both of the dams partially
failed during a recent rain event, causing debris and flooding at downstream locations. We find that dams of this nature are inherently hazardous and cannot be permitted. The Department therefore orders you to cease and desist all activities at this location, and to restore the stream to a free-flow condition by removing all wood and brush forming the dams from the stream channel. All restoration work shall be completed no later than January 31,

Please notify this office when the restoration has been completed so that
a follow-up site inspection may be scheduled by our staff. Failure to comply with this request or any further unauthorized activity
on the site may result in this case being referred for elevated
enforcement action.

We anticipate and would appreciate your full cooperation in this matter.
Please feel free to contact me at this office if you have any questions.
David L. Price
District Representative and Water Management Division.

Here is the actual response sent back by Mr. DeVries:

Re: DEQ File No. 97-59-0023; T1 1N; R10W, Sec. 20; Lycoming County

I am the legal landowner but not the Contractor at 2088 Dagget Lane, TroutRun, Pennsylvania.

A couple of beavers are in the (State unauthorized) process of
constructing and maintaining two wood "debris" dams across the outlet
stream of my Spring Pond. While I did not pay for, authorize, nor supervise their dam project, I think they would be highly offended that you call their skillful use of nature's building materials "debris." I would like tochallenge your department to attempt to emulate their dam project any time and/or any place you choose.

I believe I can safely state there is no way you could ever match their dam skills, their dam resourcefulness, their dam ingenuity, their dam persistence, their dam determination and/or their damwork ethic.

As to your request, I do not think the beavers are aware that they must
first fill out a dam permit prior to the start of this type of dam activity.

My first dam question to you is:
(1) Are you trying to discriminate against my Spring Pond Beavers?
(2) Or do you require all beavers throughout this State to conform to said
dam request?

If you are not discriminating against these particular beavers, through
the Freedom of Information Act, I request completed copies of all those
other applicable beaver dam permits that have been issued. Perhaps we will see if there really is a dam violation of Part 301, Inland Lakes and
Streams, of the Natural Resource and Environmental Protection Act, Act 451 of the Public Acts of 1994, being sections 324.30101 to 324.30113 of the Pennsylvania Compiled Laws, annotated.

I have several concerns. My first concern is; aren't the beavers entitled
to legal representation? The Spring Pond Beavers are financially destitute
and are unable to pay for said representation -- so the State will have to
provide them with a dam lawyer.

The Department's dam concern that either one or both of the dams failed during a recent rain event, causing flooding, is proof that this is a natural occurrence, which the Department is required to protect. In other words, we should leave the Spring Pond Beavers alone rather than harassing them and calling their dam names.

If you want the stream "restored" to a dam free-flow condition please
contact the beavers -- but if you are going to arrest them, they
obviously did not pay any attention to your dam letter, they being unable to read English.

In my humble opinion, the Spring Pond Beavers have a right to build their unauthorized dams as long as the sky is blue, the grass is green and water flows downstream. They have more dam rights than I do to live and enjoy Spring Pond.

If the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental
Protection lives up to its name, it should protect the natural resources
(Beavers) and the environment (Beavers' Dams).

So, as far as the beavers and I are concerned, this dam case can be
referred for more elevated enforcement action right now. Why wait until
1/31/2006? The Spring Pond Beavers may be under the dam ice then and there will be no way for you or your dam staff to contact/harass them then.

In conclusion, I would like to bring to your attention to a real
environmental quality, health, problem in the area. Bears are actually defecating in our woods. I definitely believe you should be persecuting the defecating bears and leave the beavers alone. If you are going to investigate the beaver dam, watch your step! The bears are not careful where they defecate!

Being unable to comply with your dam request, and being unable to contact you on your dam answering machine, I am sending this response to your dam office.