When I was growing up, our family had an all-time record of 13 cats at one time. Outdoor cats. Since then, I’ve had a lot of pet cats, and never have I seen a cat slumber and sleep with his foot on his head. I think he’s been looking over my shoulder while I watch my yoga video.
I love the old Colt firearms factory in Hartford, Connecticut. It’s been deserted for decades now, but ever so slowly gentrification is happening nearby. (It’s famous onion dome is featured in an earlier post.) There were birds meandering around the roof ledge on this overcast day and I was thrilled to get this clean shot of one flying away. Old broken windows and brick, rusty metal staircases, roofing and building stones . . . what more could a woman with camera ask for?
Luckily I had my camera hanging on my chair while I was eating lunch. Outside, my son and I were used to the little birds all around us on the concrete floor picking at bits of food fallen from the tables. Next thing we knew we had a visitor standing on the wall that kept us separated from the sand. I slowly slipped my camera from its case and began shooting. Our guest could have cared less. He was used to hanging with people. It’s a good thing, too, because the shot before this one had lots of random people clutter and our guest was monitoring all of it. In a moment, everyone vacated the scene inside my frame and the shorebird looked me right in my camera eye.
I know what he really wanted. My fries. Looking me in the eye so he could decide exactly when he might hop on the table, he was aiming for a close look at what we had ordered for lunch. He clocked our every move and stayed until we finished eating. We got up and he was standing in the same place on the wall, ready for a mad dash before the bus boy got to it first.
Louie has new chew toys! He jumps on the table after Christmas Eve dinner and goes for the live centerpiece. See his ears turned back? That’s because I’m scolding him, telling him in my not-nice voice to get down. Does he care? Only enough to put his ears in low gear.
Next photo is this morning, Christmas Day. Louie has been playing tether ball with the ornaments. He hides under the tree. Chews its “branches”, too. So many new chew toys! The best part of Christmas for Louie, along with the much-needed nap after so much excitement.
After his nap, Louie wakes to play with the tree ornaments again. The sun has gone down and everything’s even more exciting in the dark!
On this eve of Thanksgiving, Louie has already begun to celebrate. He doesn’t have to worry about shopping, chopping, stuffing, mashing, pie-baking or cakes. All he has to do is sit at my feet, wait for the bits of roast beef to appear at my fingertips, and lick his lips. Next hour, my son opens a can of tuna and a quarter cup of Louie’s favorite juice appears in his bowl. Oh, if our Thanksgiving dinner could be so effortless!
Before: King Louie
After: Tuna juice does it every time.
Recently, I’ve run into mannequins. It’s a whole new world. Folks collect them, refurbish them with new paint, human hair lashes and glass eyes. Ten years ago, if I had paid a visit to a fortune teller and she told me that mannequins and wigs would play some part in my future, I wouldn’t have believed it.
Last fall I attended a play on a college campus in the Berkshires, and a group of mannequins were lolling in the lobby. I shot them on my way out. A few weeks ago I happened upon an armless vintage woman of wood. She was worn to tatters and I fell in love with the mesmerizing cracks and deformities in her skin.
Finally, there’s Nora, restored perhaps beyond her original glory with ruby-red lips, piercing glass eyes, and Snow White skin. Before I finished unwrapping her, I began to photograph her, in an attempt to decipher her mystery. Nora’s going to do some modeling for me. When she’s not working, she’s the beauty in the basement. The rest of the family says she’s too spooky to reside anywhere else in the house. So, in the basement she will perch, her head sealed in a plastic grocery bag when she’s between gigs. Can’t allow any dust to settle in those lashes.