I admit that photo of Hoover (check out those eyelashes) has him in sort of an odd position, but people! In addition to termites, these African mammals eat Cucumis humifructis, or Aardvark cucumbers, of which there is not a single image in Google. Learn something new every day.
Here’s what I learned first thing today: styrofoam weights, used in water aerobics, weigh 47# each when you’re trying to pump them under water. OMG. I don’t like to use silly little abbreviations like that but, OMG. So, I’m back now from my early morning workout and getting ready for:
OPENING DAY Tonight is the first concert of the season down at Millennium Park. The Grant Park Symphony Orchestra plays at the Pritzker Pavillion, the spectacular venue designed by Frank Gehry. Tonight is Barber violin concerto and Brahms Symphony No.2. Close to a dozen of us from the neighborhood go down early and set up on the lawn with blankets, chairs, champagne and the biggest antipasto spread imaginable. I have my red and yellow peppers, tomatoes and giant garlic heads slow roasting in the oven, 2 artisan cheeses plus a round of Zingerman’s City Goat I managed to snag, which is- hands down- the freshest, creamiest goat cheese I’ve ever tasted. (Wren! Take note!) I’ll also take some French country sausages, olives and berries. I found some giant blackberries that will taste good and look pretty on the plate. A baguette and some Chicago Flats and a box of chocolate truffles completes our end of the picnic fare. Not that it’s all about the food.
Speaking of tomatoes, my earth box tomatoes are showing promise despite only 6 hours of sun a day. I have them up here with me on the third floor balcony. I’m not sure the little tiny step out balcony is actually meant to be heavy weight bearing; in fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if it falls off the side of the condo come August. (Thumbs, toes, balconies. If I knew a therapist I’d ask about this concern over parts falling off.) Nevertheless, I’ve decided I can’t live without growing tomatoes so there you go. The third floor balcony gets more sun than any other spot.
Begonias bore me, impatiens likewise but what can I do? I’m adding some hardy ferns, astilbe and a few other shady loving perennials a bit at a time. I end up using planter boxes and wall space, too, just to get a little bit of growing color about the place.
While I was taking some pictures this morning I discovered that our chia doormats are once again flourishing. We’ve had so much rain and the cottonwood threw all of her seeds recently- there must be some way I could make money with this. In the meanwhile I keep yelping at Rich to not step on the mat (which defeats the purpose of it, I guess) because I want to see how lush it will grow before it peters out.
Here’s our little urban entryway. It’s a far cry from the half acre of mature perennials that greeted guests in Ann Arbor but it will do for now. I try to keep it cheery in hopes the mailman will decide to step it up to three days per week.