Thursday, August 14, 2008

City Views, Country Dreams

Good evening from New York.

As we approach the night of the full moon, how I wish that I could tell you that the vile painting has been removed from the lobby of the building in which I live. I cannot. It is still there, and has continued to collect many comments from folk who pass by it. So far, I have not heard anything favorable.

I so appreciate all the comments on my prior post! You all give me evidence that there are others in this year 2008 who also live in circumstances not within their control. Well ... if we want to go very global, do any of us live in a place that we control? Should that awful lobby painting take on symbolic status? Nah. It's just ugly.

The elevator repair continues. We have intermittent contact with the remaining two elevators for our travels upward and downward. I am so glad to be within foot climbing reach of each destination. The stairs may be strewn with debris from the renovation, but they still work!

The failing little topiary fir tree outside the building entrance has been replaced. It and its stronger, older topiary brother tree have now been also surrounded by additional plantings. I may yet have the courage to get the camera out to show you how real estate folks can even mess up plantings, but not tonight.

I know that the weather across the Atlantic has been grim. I remember that the only time that I ever traveled to London in August was the coldest trip I ever experienced. I wore all my packed layers simultaneously. I remember stopping by the South Molton St. Sassoon shop (part of my usual stops) for a very extreme hair cut, wearing all my layers, and having the top stylist exclaim how he really liked my "gear." I was so glad to be warm!

I have again retreated into to yesteryear.

Back to now. Work has been stressful. The rains we have had in the past weeks have caused leaks in the "back stage" parts of the shop. I report these problems, hoping that those who can fix it will fix it. Not yet. It is raining right now. Wonder what I will find tomorrow morning.

Have also been dealing with a variety of "human resources" issues. I may never go into greater details here, but will confess that it is so very tiring to do the very best job I can imagine being able to do, and still find that there are still issues outstanding.

Earlier this week, I so enjoyed being able to get together with old NYC friends who were making their more or less annual visit back east from their home in California. It is wonderful to just get back into conversation with folks that you know so well.

Is that not a beauty of this site. That we can trade our written conversations, day by day, and every bit of it just continues to strengthen the interests we share with each other.

Pleasant dreams.


  1. Oh I love to be first!
    Could you not form a residents' association and arrange your own decor? Or am I being ridiculous?
    Might that picture not 'disappear' one day? :-)

  2. I'm sorry that you have such stresses at work at the moment, and hope that things improve very soon.
    I love your painting (not the one in your lobby) but the one on the top right column of your those pieces of blue and white china!

  3. Hi francis, i've just caught up with your blogs. I do like the idea of the doormen looking handsomer next to the painting and do go down and paint some knickers on the awful thing..Though i bet you smile when you see it imagining all the comments xxo

  4. It seeems you have stresses at work and at home, how awful for you. Have you any sort of tenants' association to put pressure on the developers to remove the offending painting? (or a secret trip in the middle of the night with a tub of white wash and a brush)

  5. I could send you a picture of a man in a skirt and a dead dog! And somebody calls these odd things 'Art'...

  6. One can always do without 'human resources' People and their petty requirements need to be put in perspective for them!
    I don't mean you can do without them, just their problems!

  7. I Frances I know what you mean about living with things that are not in your control. My next door neighbours have built a swimming pool just 20 feet from my sitting room, we live in half of an old cattle building and stables so we are attached on just one side. The pool has no planning but should have and I have no way of complaining without them knowing who complained and as I have to live next door to them I must stay quiet. So my beautiful peace is broken by teenagers sreaming at the top of their voices and jumping on each other!! I will get used to it I am sure but in the meantime I quite like the rain and cold it keeps them out of the pool!

  8. Indeed, it is Frances. And so wonderful to be able to talk to you and remind myself of brief but happy times spent in the Big Apple. But you know we get your weather. It seems to blow up over Long Island and carry on blowing across the Atlantic and before emptying itself on us here. Often the same with sunshine or wind. The only thing we lack is your snow.

  9. I do so understand the discomfort of living with circumstances beyond your control, but I'm sure things will seem better once the building / decorating people have gone. And surely if enough residents got together a petition or something about how much they hated that painting, something might be done? Failing that, as Cait suggests, perhaps it could suddenly just "disappear"?

    Hope life gets more restful soon.

  10. Go with the petition Francis. It's a great idea.

  11. Dear Frances,

    So sorry to hear of life's stresses at the moment, really is not fair for you.

    Could you not get a petition going, know this might sound worrying for you though as not to hurt anyone's feelings. We live in a pretty village but we have neighbours who have built a conservatory almost touching our fence to gardens and is a tad of an eyesore.

    Cait does have a point, it may disappear that picture hopefully one day Frances, huge sympathies to you my trusted kind deputy owl.


  12. Terrific post read by the light of the full moon in the middle of the night !!

  13. I'm glad you found some time to catch up with old friends - as you know I certainly recommend it as a tonic. You sound as if you could do with a break, Frances, so I hope life gets a bit less trying soon... perhaps it will begin with the removal of that painting. Fingers crossed!

  14. Such a pity you still have to suffer the wretched painting!!
    Hope to see you soon!
    all best wishes

  15. Frances, I have just caught up with you. What a difficult time it must be for you to have renovations all around. will your flat be done also?
    As to the painting...I'm afraid it reminds me of the insides of an animal. I should deal with it smartly! The petition sounds good, so does the whitewash.

  16. Sorry to hear what a stressful time of things you are having Francis. sending love and calming vibes your way xx

  17. Good morning Frances. What a time you're having. You are amazing in the way that you manage to keep your balance when everything around you is in upheaval. It will pass, but in the meantime it's so difficult. Lovely that you were able to spend some time with old friends and forget the mess in the lobby and the unpleasantness of human resource management for a while!

  18. Well I'm late, as usual! Time moves a little more leisurely on this side of the equator...

    I spent 13 years in a job that I absolutely hated, because I had to earn a living. The pay was very good, but it certainly didn't make up for all the stress and headaches of the position. I sympathize with you. But thank goodness that the job is not all there is to life!

    I'm with Cait...maybe that picture could just conveniently disappear one day.

  19. Ah, my little slice of cosmopolitan life! Pete Seeger! I didn't even know he was still with us, and that you just walked over and heard him...there was an article in the Times magazine about a group of artists who produce paintings of varying types for hotel lobbies and apratment blocks...I instantly thought of you!