Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Teddy Kennedy Dies

Doug Mills/The New York Times

"For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die." --Edward Moore "Ted" Kennedy, U.S. senator from Massachusetts

Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts, a son of one of the most storied families in American politics, a man who knew triumph and tragedy in near-equal measure and who will be remembered as one of the most effective lawmakers in the history of the Senate, died last night. He was 77.

Remember meeting Teddy in South Hadley, MA, on St. Partick's Day in the '60s. Ryan Buckley had invited me to come up from Providence to take part in the festivities. After the parade we went to an Irish club and there was Teddy. Do not recall shaking his hand or his looking my way.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A Chorus Line

One singular sensation
Every little step she takes.
One thrilling combination
Every move that she makes.
One smile and suddenly nobody else will do;
You know you'll never be lonely with you know who.
- “One”

A Chorus Line is a musical about seventeen Broadway dancers auditioning for spots on a chorus line. The book was authored by James Kirkwood, Jr. and Nicholas Dante, lyrics were written by Edward Kleban, and music was composed by Marvin Hamlisch. This landmark musical won nine Tonys and a Pulitzer Prize.

Last evening Joan and I attended the Merry-Go-Round Playhouse presentation.

Auburn native Thommie Walsh was a member of the original cast of “A Chorus Line,” and the character he played, Bobby, was modeled a great deal after Thommie himself. The character, Bobby, describes himself as being from upstate New York, “near Buffalo.”

In the Merry-Go-Round's production, the character of Bobby is being played by another Auburn native, Todd Lattimore, a former student of Thommie Walsh.

The entire show, except for the final minutes, was played on a bare stage, meant to replicate the space and seriousness of the Broadway audition, replete with a floor-to-ceiling, mirrored back wall and work lights. During the intermission the reflection of the audience in the glass made for a unique optical experience.

An enthusiastic, full-house made for a pleasant evening of musical theatre.

Courtesy of Merry-Go-Round
Elizabeth Earley plays Cassie

Merry-Go-Round Playhouse 'Chorus Line' is truly a sensation posted by Joan E. Vadeboncoeur in the The Post-Standard August 27, 2009.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Raked South Garden B & B

Bradley phoned and asked us to do an errand for him in Seneca Falls. Left Perrine Street just before noon. After accomplishing Brad’s task and feeling hungry we stopped at Abigails. Our waitress mentioned she had not seen us lately. We told her in the summer we try to stay close to the pool. The “All-You-Can-Eat Deli Bar Buffet” was excellent. The only disappointment was that the “Bleu Bayou” chicken wing were not served today.

We drove North, crossed the Thruway and looked for mum plants on sale. Too early.

Arriving at Pultneyville we went into Good Old Days. Barbara and John greeted us. Joan and I wandered around the shop and mentally marked some items that we might purchase tomorrow.

A little after 4 PM we drove into the driveway of the Raked South Garden Bed & Breakfast. Dottie, the hostess, came to the entrance door and proceeded to show us our room. Brought in the bags and Joan presented Dottie with a mum that we purchased at Wegmans yesterday. Dottie remarked that this was her first mum of the year.

Joan and I took a walk up to Pultneyville's Lake Captains' Monument and the Lake Ontario lakefront. Returning we sat on the porch and drank our sodas.

For dinner we decided to try Bad to the Bone Barbecue. As our fate seems to often dictate when we visit restaurants for the first time, sure enough when we approached the counter to order, there was a cashier working her first day on the job. Joan ordered and paid for the meal. After being seated Joan checked the receipt and discovered that the our order was incomplete. The young girl forgot to include our requested chicken. Joan returned to the register to reorder. The owner then came over to see what was going on. After a short explanation, he punched the chicken item number into the computer and told Joan no charge.

The meal of a chicken breast & wing with 1/4 Rack of Ribs and two sides (BBQ Beans and Collard Greens) was terrific. During the meal the owner wandered over and inquire as to how we were enjoying our meal. We told him that all was good especially the sides. We thanked him again for his kindness in not charging us for the chicken.

For dessert we stopped at McD’s for a hot fudge sundae.

Back at the Raked South Garden we sat on the porch until the bugs started to come out. Then we went in and sat in the parlor. We were reading our novels when Dottie came into the room. We invited her to sit down and join us. We conversed for about an hour as Dottie shared the history of Pultneyville and her involvement in the community. She also stated that she was in Skaneateles last weekend for the concert series and had dinner at the Hollywood on her way home.

Rising from a good night’s rest, Dottie served us breakfast at 8:30 on the back porch. The gardens and old barn made for a quaint eating venue. Dottie served a bowl of fresh fruit (the blackberries were huge and juicy), blueberry pancakes with New York State maple syrup, a sausage patty made by a local butcher, and hot coffee. Before leaving the table Dottie gave us two muffins with a plastic baggie for travel. Joan and I split one and took one with us.

We returned to Good Old Days just as they were opening at 11:00 AM. We bought a Fall door hanging, two plaques and a kitchen cheese shredder.

For our route home we choose the Seaway Trail.

First stop the Sodus Bay Lighthouse Museum. Several people were on the grounds. Two families were having a picnic. The large red oak tree on the museum front yard appeared to have been struck by lighting. Since there was still debris strewn around the ground this might have happened last evening. Joan gathered four or five pieces of the ripped off bark.

Lake Ontario was overcast.

Next we took a bathroom break at Chimney Bluffs State Park. Due to the high humidity and bright sun we passed on the walk to the beach.

Our third stop was the Pleasant Beach Hotel. But to our dismay the dining room does not open until 3 PM. After counting the number of tables on the deck (there are 12) we left for downtown Fair Haven. There we entered Giuseppe's SUB & Pizza Shop and ordered a combination sub to go.

With food in hand we drove out to Fair Haven Beach State Park. There by the boat launch we consumed our sub while six people merrily fished from the docks.

We arrived back at Perrine safe and sound in time for cocktails.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Wednesday Naturalists: Summer Hike II

South Pond

Naturalist, Dave Spier, led today’s nature walk.

Arrived at the Montezuma Audubon Center at 10:15 AM. Several cars in the parking lot. Went inside and registered with Becky, an AmeriCorps volunteer.

Becky had a California Kingsnake wrapped around her left forearm. She said this snake used at the Center for demonstrations was raised in captivity. She mentioned it as extremely gentle. Took her word for it and allowed the snake to remain attached to her arm.

California Kingsnake

After signing the register went into the back work room, there a summer intern was cataloguing pressed flowers that she plans to mount in a book for display in the foyer.

While waiting, took some photos of the Center's foyer and the three turtles in one of the terrariums and observed an ospery through the picture window.


Turtles - squint - they're there

At precisely 10:30 AM Dave assembled the hikers. This group of seven (Brett from Butler, Dave & Dottie from Auburn, Tom from Junius Pond, Carol & Carol from Geneva and me) followed Dave outside through the work room door.

Once outside Dave presented some options. All agreed we should stay in the sun and out of the mosquito-infested woods.

The bull thistle was the first flower that Dave identified. He noted that the gold finches are just starting to consume the seeds from this plant.

Making the turn onto the mowed path there was an abundance of Queen Anne's lace. Commonly called wild carrot, Dave pointed out that Queen Anne's lace is distinguished by a single dark red flower in its center. Carol mentioned that one can make a jam using its root.

Queen Anne's Lace

Coming upon a Honeysuckle bush, led to a discussion on edible berries. Dave recalled a little ditty that helps wilderness survivors cope with dilemma of what berries to eat and which to avoid. Basically, red berries are generally a 50/50 chance, blue and black are OK, but white and yellow no way.

Honeysuckle Bush

Goggling for a berry song found this passage from The Life and Times of Piebald the Mouse by Gordon J. Eaton: “If it’s blue - it’s good for you. If it’s red - use your head. If it’s white - do not bite.”

Honeysuckle Berries

As we turned to walk toward the observation deck a great blue heron glided into the south pond.

Dave pointed out the common evening primrose.



Also Dave plucked a piece of ragweed and passed it around while explaining that goldenrod gets a bad rap for ragweed’s mischief. Evidently mother was wrong. Pulling up all the goldenrod was futile, since ragweed was the culprit behind our hay fever.

While standing near the red oak, Tom noticed an osprey landing on the walkway between the south and north ponds.

Red Oak Tree Trunk

Notice - red tint in the bark crevices

Red Oak Tree Leaf

Red Oak Tree Dead Leaves on Path

Dave took the opportunity to point out the similarities and differences between the osprey and the bald eagle.

At the entrance to the short path through the woods was a member of the Magnolia family, the Tulip Tree.

Tulip Tree

Tulip Tree Leaf

Also on this path was this tree but I did not record its name.

And this was it leaf.

Walking up the ramp to the observation deck, Dottie's Dave drew our attention to a Virginia Creeper. This five-leaved ivy was doing its job well.

Virginia Creeper

While using the observation deck to rest, an osprey flew by and put on a great show. Then a phoebe perched nearby.

Resting on the deck

View from observation deck - North Pond

Upon our return to the Center while admiring a flower garden planted just his year, Brett had us look up. There flying above us were two ospreys. Soaring way up high, the pair of osprey appeared as black dots in the clouds.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

68th CNY Scottish Games

Clan Cameron assembled its members from near and far at the 68th annual CNY Scottish Games and Celtic festival. Skies threatened throughout the day. But the rains held off.

Clan Cameron marching on to the parade field for the opening ceremonies.

Mass Bands parading.

Clan Cameron review stand.

Clan Cameron marching off the parade field after the opening ceremonies.

Three photos showing an overview of Clan Cameron from hillside:

The cutouts provide a photo opt.

This year's new exhibit proved popular.

This woman's daughter had just returned from Scotland.

Clan Cameron greets Clan Morrison.

Harpists displayed their talents.

Highland Dancing.

Music entertainment was provided by:



Flyin' Column

Jeff Coffin look-a-like.

Clan Cameron Chief & his family.

2009 Scottish Games Dogs

2009 Scottish Games Photographers

Two Outtakes:

March of the Cameron Men - 1st Verse
by Mary Maxwell Campbell

Cha'n 'eil òganach treun de chloinn Chamrain gu léir,
Nach téid deònach fo Bhrataich Lochial;
Gu buaidh no gu bàs 's bidh iad dìleas 's gach càs,
Oir géill cha d'thug Camranach riamh.

There's many a man of the Cameron Clan,
That has followed his chief to the field;
He has sworn to support him, or die by his side,
For a Cameron never can yield.

Til next Year - "Slàinte mhòr agad!"