GOSH! Think the title of this blog post will bring in the curious? I Googled "meeting and swapping" myself and came up with a fascinating post on Aleksandreia about Quakers and mate swapping. It's an interesting site and the Taberna, one section, looks to be quite the gathering place.
I found myself visiting this website when I should have been finishing this post - and right after reading a New Yorker article on procrastination! Follow this link *only* if you should be doing something more important. (great article, however)
Actually, this whole post (originally) involves three things I've accomplished this weekend. First, I finally met an Internet friend, Laura Grimes - a writer, editor, charmer, mother and pickle maker.
We became acquainted following a feature article on Henry James she wrote for The Oregonian. Since I love James' writing too, I was delighted to read the article and submit a comment on it. I also followed along from time to time on her husband's (Bob Hicks) website, Art Scatter. (Another interesting site for culture freaks and those who like witty writing.) One thing led to another, and after a couple of years we finally arranged to meet for coffee at Powells Books at Cedar Crossing to exchange some pickles she made for some art I made.
It was odd fun at Powells to wander the aisles looking for a woman (didn't know what she looked like) wearing a yellow jacket. After wandering a bit and e-mailing Laura from my BlackBerry I found a chair and sat down to read Henry James' "Portrait of a Lady." That's when she found me!
People had been looking at me a little curiously because instead of art, what I brought to Powells to swap was a small basket of tomatoes, Anaheim peppers, some Martha Stewart recipe vinaigrette, and some tomatillo branches. Maybe they wondered if Powells carried fresh produce? I toted it around the entire book store at least three times. Nice long walk, so it was good to connect with Laura at last and go off to have a cup of coffee.
I was embarrassed to realize I didn't have any money/debit card with me. (Turned out to be in the car.) She bought the coffee and I did not take a picture of it, or her or the basket of produce.
What was I thinking? One young woman stopped by our table outside and commented on the "husk cherries" which is what she called the tomatillos. (Should that be tomatilloes?) A fruit by any other name ... .
So in the picture above, the jar of homemade vinaigrette looks like brown gravy! Yuck! In the bowl, with the cherry and pear tomatoes, it still looks quite like gravy or chocolate pudding, but the smell of balsamic vinegar, garlic and black pepper (a hint) was heavenly. And my kiss goodbye to the Mister was one he won't soon forget.
I did take art at the last minute for Laura, but then I didn't follow through on giving it to her. It wasn't something that was "finished" and it was large, so if she wanted to actually hang it, it would take space and work. Here's the piece, and if she reads this and still wants it she can have it. Collage and some imagination worked up a story about Edith (I believe that's her name) taking stenography/typing classes while her beloved is out on the road touring with a band, playing the trombone. That's him with the heart on his jacket.
I did the collage/encaustic assemblage some time ago - a couple of years, maybe - and found it just before I left for Powells. Maybe I'm not ready to give it up until I learn more about the trombonist.
Well, it is nearly 5 a.m. Couldn't sleep so went to work on this blog. Now I think I'll wander back to the warm bed - femminismo
p.s. The "dithering" in the blog title is all the procrastination I am doing just by driving in the fall sunshine and blogging in the early morning and not finishing writing I *must* be doing!