1. 1.
    traveling from place to place, especially working or based in various places for relatively short periods.
    "the peripatetic nature of military life"
    synonyms:nomadic, itinerant, traveling, wandering, roving, roaming, migrant,migratory, unsettled
    "I could never get used to her peripatetic lifestyle"
  2. 2.
  1. 1.
    a person who travels from place to place.
  2. 2.
    an Aristotelian philosopher.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Blue-and-Gold Daze

When I look at clouds on a day like today, such a blue-and-gold day, I begin to find shapes in them, faces even. You might not see them, but I notice a man and a woman staring eye-to-eye in this cloud. Their noses seem to be touching, as if they are about to kiss and are having trouble getting around those obstructions. I refer to days like this as blue-and-gold days because in my silly, romantic head I remember days like this one when Hubby and I first met in college. The days were crisp and cool, and the sky always seemed blue.

And I remember touches of gold in that long-ago landscape, like this goldenrod (Solidago) growing at Rend Lake. Today, hubby and I took a lunchtime walk there on the trail we usually visit. If you walk without a camera and walk too quickly, you will miss the change in the guard, the subtle shifts in bloom from the violets of spring to the hibiscus and milkweed (Asclepius) of summer...

to this fine specimen of what looks like blue lobelia. I found a picture resembling it in a book I bought at the Crab Orchard Wildlife Refuge Visitors' Center. Don Kurz, the author of the book, Illinois Wildflowers, writes that the "Mesquakies (tribe of Native Americans) finely chopped the roots and mixed them into food of a quarrelsome couple without their knowledge. This, they believed, would avert divorce and make the pair love each other again." Fortunately, Hubby and I are getting along pretty well these days, so I hope no one sneaks any lobelia into my dinner, at least not in the foreseeable future. I do enjoy looking at them, though.

One thing I do not like to see is a locked bathroom. There are not too many still open around Rend Lake this time of year. I could not help but think of Katarina's post about her dry privy and laugh. Oh, to be dry!

By the time we had walked about two miles from the parking area--after consuming lunch and tall glasses of water--to the beach, locked bathrooms were no laughing matter, at least not for me. We had to walk those same two miles back to the car.

Looking at that big expanse of water was not helpful either. I believe that a person can achieve a certain mind-over-matter control of certain situations like locked bathrooms. Sometimes, you have no other choice.

No, I am not considering what you might be thinking. Hubby and I are getting along just fine right now, thank you very much.

After taking this video of some action on wild asters and becoming entranced by the dance of the bees, I did feel a bit woozy. You might call it a blue-and-gold daze.

...White and golden Lizzie stood,
Like a lily in a flood,--
Like a rock of blue-veined stone
Lashed by tides obstreperously,--
Like a beacon left alone
In a hoary roaring sea,
Sending up a golden fire,--
Like a fruit-crowned orange-tree
White with blossoms honey-sweet
Sore beset by wasp and bee,--
Like a royal virgin town
Topped with gilded dome and spire
Close beleaguered by a fleet
Mad to tug her standard down...

--from Christine Rossetti's poem "Goblin Market," 1859--


  1. Blue and gold daze fits perfectly and you tied all together so well. The kissing couple and the salvia. lol I do hope you found a bathroom pretty quickly!

  2. How I enjoyed walking with you on your walk - I've been sitting here with a big smile on my face! Although I do realize that locked bathrooms is a serious matter!
    Love the sound of hte bees and- ducks, is it?


  3. Tina, I actually thought of the term "blue-and-gold days" before I met my husband, when I was still in high school. My freshman and sophmore years were spent in a friendly small town near Scott Air Force Base, and the school colors were blue and gold. I was disappointed when we moved to another part of the state and I had to finish high school somewhere else. Especially when I found out the school colors were black and white and the mascot was a terrier! Unimaginative, to say the least. The bathroom was back where we had parked. Glad to say I made it in time. Men have it made, in more ways than one, don't you think?

  4. Katarina, glad you liked the post. I'm not sure where that "duck" noise came from. There always seem to be a lot of unidentifiable background noises when I take a video, especially when Hubby is along for the walk. Hmmm...

  5. Yup, men do. But I learned a trick a long time ago in the Army, carry TP. A gal HAS to do what she has to do at times. Glad you made it though.

  6. Tina, the problem is, there are still ticks this time of year in them thar woods and snakes too! Call of nature or no, I'm not stepping too far off the beaten path. Hubby said just a few weeks ago he encountered a snake that appeared to be at least four feet long. It was stretched out, sunning itself on the sidewalk. How would you like to meet one of those critters?

  7. Looks like she's yellin at him W2W, probably about some celosia he cut down in their sky garden. He probably thought it was loosestrife.

    Is goldenrod as rampant there as it is here? I don't really mind, but it does seem to find its way into spots in the garden that I'd rather it stay out of. It's Kentucky's state flower so I don't reprimand it.

    About the spat-proof lobelia recipe, I don't think my marriage would be as colorful without a little fire and brimstone every now and then.

    Sorry to hear about your rather uncomfortable holding pattern. ;~)

    We deconstructed Rossetti's "Goblin Market" in a college poetry class. She's one of my favorite Victorian poets.

  8. I do see the couple kissing in the clouds! I can relate to your distress over the locked bathrooms--two miles back to your car?! I think I would have had to hike into the woods, though the possibility of meeting up with a snake doesn't sound very appealing.
    Loved the Christina Rossetti poem; I've never read much of her poetry.

  9. You see, TC, women take a much more romantic view of the world, something it could probably use a lot more of right now. Yelling, indeed! It wouldn't dare. I think goldenrod has gotten a bad rap because it somehow gets associated with the allergen-producing ragweed also shedding its pollen at this time of year. Actually, Kurz (that name makes me think of Heart of Darkness--now I know why I posted that weird comment about harlequin ducks on Michelle of Rambling Woods' site) says that goldenrod's pollen is not wind-blown but is distributed by bees, wasps, and beetles. Regarding the lobelia: You're right about the sparks-flying-keep-the-fire-going thing. Until you get to be an old geezer like King Leontes, and you imagine you see the sparks flying in the wrong direction. Then watch all the brimstone break loose! As for a holding pattern, it's been interesting to watch (I guess) from a distance. Entertaining, you might say. When you deconstructed the poem, did the parts add up to equal the whole?

  10. Rose, I'm glad to know the women are on my side in matters of clouds and other things! Now if only our wonderful gov (Blago) would see things our way and loosen the pursestrings a bit so that facilities can be properly maintained--as they were designed to be. I guess he thinks only fishermen and male hunters frequent our state's parks and nature trails. Women, as usual, are either "left alone" or "beleaguered." The public (at least south of Chicago) is not being served at all, though we keep dropping money into a bottomless tax pit.

  11. Walk2write, I would say no to the snake, but sometimes when you gotta go, you just gotta go....:)

  12. W2W: What a neat start with your kissing cloud. What's funny is I took the whole thing and saw a rocket with a stripe around the middle.

  13. What a wonderful post! Your cloud images were indeed a man and woman and spoke of romance...your lobelia had Indian lore....your video has the hum of lovely bees at work and there is the humor (or not so much humor) of the needed bathroom! All of it wrapped in the package of blue and gold! Wonderful!

  14. Oh, and I was going to say, also the poetry! It was a post filled with so much good!

  15. Tina, if I saw a snake that big, there wouldn't be any question about whether to hold on or let go. ;>}

    FG, I see the rocket too, now that you mention it, but it's breaking in half. I guess it's all a matter of perspective, male or female. Men see rockets; women see lovers kissing. TC bucks the male trend, though. I think he looks at things through Shakespeare-colored glasses. I liked your King Neptune cloud, by the way.

    Thank you, TTL. Have you ever read the entire poem? It seems simple enough at first, like children's poetry, but a closer examination reveals something much more complex. Rossetti was apparently bothered (as so many women still are) by the great disparity between men and women with regard to social/political/economic/sexual freedom and power. Or, at least, that's how I interpret the piece. Does anyone out there have a different opinion?

  16. Yep, I was a thinking them trees look like a good place to cop a squat! When I have to go, I have to go so look out to all around me! lol...

    Blue skies and white clouds are a beautiful sight to the eyes... Nothing like watching butterflies busy at work on the blooms....

  17. Cop a squat? Skeeter, you have a way with words. I bet you could hold your own in a competition against the roughnecks. I will add that one to my List of Colorful Gardening Terms, along with Arrgh! I will be heading over to your Trail of Tears post in a few minutes. Have a great Sunday!

  18. The Solidago photo is lovely- a real late summer feel to it. I too saw the faces in the clouds, but also saw a diving beetle split in half!

  19. Thanks for visiting and commenting, HM. The plant is so common this time of year along the side of the road that many people consider it a weed. I like to think of it as a wildflower. I don't remember ever seeing a diving beetle so I looked it up:

    I find it interesting that the male has to use a suction-cup device to hold onto the female while mating. Do you suppose she is a reluctant participant?

  20. Dear Walk2write,
    Thank you for a fun post. I also enjoy all your comments and commenters!
    A blue and gold day indeed!
    When I have to go I have to husband understands and keeps watch while I am out in the woods...
    I am going to look up Christina Rossetti. This piece was interesting.
    Thank you for the bees. I do love them.

  21. Cop-A-Squat..I can add that to mine too..I was thinking that as I don't know that I could walk 2 miles back to the car. I love the way you are so responsive to everyone who posts. I always wonder how many people see an answer unless they sign up to get it by e-mail. I usually go to their blog if they have a question. Or maybe it is because I am the world's slowest typist. high school colors were blue and least I think they were. I really enjoyed this post and the music in the background.

  22. Blue and gold days---love it! I 'saw' the couple about to kiss! I too find it interesting to watch clouds and 'find' people and animals in them!
    I don't think I could've trekked that great distance (lol!) in an eme(u)rgency like that!

    Loved the video, the photos and the verse!

  23. I can see the kissing couple very clearly. I love finding things in clouds.

    Very nice post. Another golden day to enjoy before autumn changes to winter.

  24. Walk2Write, I am the baby and only girl to 3 older brothers so I can not only talk the talk but can walk the walk. tee hee.. I can also have tea with the Generals wife. That comes from my grandmothers teachings. I am a human gecko and can transform into what ever I need to be. So bring on them Roughnecks! LOL…

  25. Sherry, thanks for getting the part about the "gold." It's funny how that just worked its way into the post. I really had commented to my husband when we began the stroll that the day was another blue-and-gold day, not realizing the significance of the gold until we were farther along in the walk. Okay, enough of the bathroom humor! Silence on that topic is golden...

    Michelle, thank you. Many times, the comments left here and the ones I leave on other blogs help me think of future posts. Someone will mention something like TC did about the oracles at Delphi, and the post about earth's bubbles begins to surface and take shape in my mind. I appreciate each and every comment left here. We are all muses to each other. The music is something I just added. I've been hearing playlists on other blogs and thought it would be kinda neat to have my own.

    Kanak, you're one of those bloggers who inspire me too with their posts and comments. I am enjoying learning more about India than I could ever have hoped to in a book or on a television program. (I do love books, though!)

    Marnie, the women are in the majority on perceiving the lovers. Are there no more romantic men left in the world? ;>} Aarrgh! You mentioned the "W" that we don't want to think about just yet (if ever). Thanks a lot! Seriously, though, I need to drag some warmer things out of storage and start packing away the shorts and tank tops. Sigh...

  26. Once you told me about the faces I can see them, but what I first noticed was the "eye" cloud hovering at top left.

    Blue and gold and an autumn meeting make a sweet courtship story, Walk2Write - are those colors that you use in interiors, too?

    A patch of goldenrod was in bloom a few miles from here - first I've seen this year -it's too hot and dry for Lobelia, so Plumbago will have to add the blue, and its only herbal effects seem to be upon butterflies!

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  27. Skeeter, you human gecko, you! Just please don't transform yourself into an insurance salesperson. I would have trouble saying no to someone as funny as you are. I'm the baby too with two older brothers. I guess that's why bathroom humor is so hard for me to resist. As for tea with the general's wife, I think I would be inclined to hide under the tablecloth looking for my napkin. Mom (the wife of an NCO) tried her best to teach me some etiquette, just in case, but the lessons apparently did not stick with me. Oh well. If I can arrange a verbal olympics, you and the roughnecks will be the first ones invited to compete!

    Annie, I was so busy with the lovers, I failed to notice the "eye." I wonder what that little omission means, besides not being very observant? And how do I interpret the eye watching the lovers (and me watching the lovers)? I'm glad you added something new to the mix of opinions. As for blue and gold in my decorating, I try to sneak some in now and then, mainly on the bookshelf. Most of my decorating takes place outside. Anybody who has seen the inside of my house knows I'm not really interested in interior decor. I hope I'm right about the plant being lobelia. It was the only one I saw on the walk, very out of place among all of the goldenrod and asters. It was at the edge of the woods so I guess its roots are shaded and cool enough to survive the dry weather we have been having lately. Besides, the Rend Lake area can be a bit swampy here and there. Thanks for dropping by and commenting!

  28. Your posts always make me smile. Your theme of gold and blue, plus the lovely piano accompaniment, perfectly fits these golden autumn days. Something about this season makes me remember my lost youth. Too bad about the bathrooms being closed. Mind over matter only gets you so far. I'm sure I would have found a place in the woods.

  29. WS, I'm just returning the favor. Each time I notice a new posting by you, I can't wait to read what delightful stuff you've cooked up for us. I will be over in a few minutes to check. I know what you mean about youth. But did we really lose it? Was it purposely misplaced or maybe stolen?

  30. W2W: I would never let a squirrel be my guide to what to eat. These are actually toadstools and are poisinous. They also eat the buckeyes which would make you sick. I have watched them eat these toadstools a couple of times but this was the first time I caught her with them when I was outside.
    BTW: I didn't want to say a rocket was breaking up because of you being from FL, but I thought it.

  31. Very interesting and enjoyable post! I see your cloud people. On our way to a church revival meeting last night, the sun had just gone down and there were a few clouds in the west. I told my hubby that I saw Peter Rabbit or maybe Harvey in the clouds and he started acting like we should be heading for the Funny Farm;-)

  32. FG, thanks for the warning. I think I will add a mushroom guide to my bookshelf. My dad knew a lot about which mushrooms were edible, but that was when we lived in Germany. He never would pick them here in the States. I guess there must be subtle differences between European and American fungi. Regarding the rocket, tucked away as we are in the NW corner of FL, we are quite a distance from the launch pad, but thanks for the concern.

    Hi, Dorothy. Thanks for stopping by for a visit. I'm guessing your hubby must be a more down-to-earth kind of guy. Fortunately (?!), mine has his head in the clouds as much or more than I do.

    Skeeter, you're not just a gecko but a giggle-girl too. You'll disarm the roughnecks with that laugh. That's your secret weapon, isn't it?

  33. Ohh, I pity those without an unlocked restroom nearby. Nothing is more frustrating that a locked restroom or a an eatery that has "employee only" facilities.

    I enjoyed this very much. lol

  34. W2W,

    That picture of the sign warning of shooters/hunters that looks like he's aiming at the man walking past is pretty funny.

  35. I haven't read the entire poem, I am afraid. It has a lovely beginning. I would like to read it and see what Rossetti is saying. I know she was a woman ahead of her time.

  36. Thank you, KD! At least sometimes the unpleasant things in life can inspire us. The momemtary discomfort I experienced (which my husband for some reason did not share) gave me the idea for the post.

    MBT, we have been walking at Rend Lake for almost a year now since we moved back to SI, and I've been puzzling over that sign since the first time I saw it. Why would hunting even be allowed near a nature/bike trail? I guess parks play by different rules down here.

    TTL, I found the poem online for you to read.

    It's a very enigmatic poem and open to interpretation. I like to think it has something to do with the social circumstances Rossetti grew up in. Don't you wonder how the young poets today will be interpreted by readers in the distant future?