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Monday, November 21, 2011


Today's challenge:

Ekphrasis post. Ekphrasis (writing about another art form) – Find a Flickr Image in Creative Commons that inspires you in some way (positively or negatively) and free write about it. Give yourself exactly 15 minutes to write without stopping. Don’t think! Brave bonus: Publish to your blog without editing! (You can include a disclaimer)

I searched for "creative commons images" and found, through a post on that site, CadYou, a site for 2D and 3D cad images of high quality. What a great concept! I joined and did a quick look around and chose this image:

NO IMAGE...turns out the images are available in formats that do not work here, and I do not want to take the time to download the program I would need to convert any of the images. Perhaps in a later post I will look into this page more, though, because it looks, to me, very cool.

So instead! I went to WikiMedia. And chose a "random image".

And so begins the 15 minutes:

The owl sits on a fence post outside a conservation park in the United Kingdom. I visited some parts of the UK in 2008 and when I saw this photo I was immediately reminded of that visit. My sister Cathy and I took two weeks first in Ireland and then Scotland. Our week in Ireland was spent in the Dingle peninsula, in a vacation house - a cottage rented by the week by its owner. An old cottage outside the community of Dingle, in the countryside, but with several neighbors, including many sheep. We met the neighbors across the street and we had beer at the pub down the street.

The Dingle peninsula has to be among the most beautiful places in teh world, and it is somewhat primitive as well. We looked out on craggy rocks in the ocean (Atlantic), took sheep paths, drove on tiny windy roads and kept running into walls on the sides of the roads. We got to know the local body shop in Dingle quite well. They did a great job of rubbing out the scratches in our rental car. And replacing tires. Tyres, I guess they are really.

Dingle is a great little town, old and "quaint" but hardly full of itself. It's a real place, with all the mod cons, more or less, including an internet cafe and a phone place where we could make inexpensive trans-atlantic calls.  But I really shouldn't be making this some sort of travelogue. Lordy. We loved it there but also loved Edinburgh. I was determined, when we got to that Scottish city, to find some areas written about in the books by Alexander McCall Smith, who lives there. I found one of the pubs, and it fit the descriptions very well. I loved Edinburgh. We knocked about there, looking at castles and a lot more, but at one point I was dealing with a lot of stomach pain and while we were in a restaurant for lunch I nearly fainted. This is when Cathy called for serious action and got me to a hospital. It was a little complicated - we made our way back to the older little hotel where we were staying and called on the concierge or whatever she was to guide us. Then I took a cab to the hospital. Spent four days there, with a hole in my stomach. This made us have to extend our stay, and changing our plane tickets was not really a treat. Had to pay for that one. Didn't get the insurance. Who'd a thunk??

How much time have I used? Eight minutes? Oh heck.

I loved being in that country. I love the oldness of it, the customs, the walking, the way one could come up on a treasure unexpectedly, like the cemetery that was up high - on a roof, it seemed like, but couldn't have been. And the portrait museum. But this is still being a travelogue. Surely I can do better than that.

The television is playing an episode of Glee right now. It is one I have seen so I am not missing it. I will want to watch the one after this one. I am watching through Hulu Plus, using my Roku. I am trying to wean myself off cable television (which I have not yet cut out, however). I watch episode after episode of so many shows. I can't remember when I last watched so much television. I do have an excuse. I am recovering from knee surgery, remember?? And I need a lot of rest and I need to do many little exercises sitting on the couch. However, I am flying to Las Vegas tonight so I should not be watching anything but instead packing and cleaning up. Trouble is, I still hurt. I figured why not get this blog post done first.  12 minutes in.

My body feels done in. I went to physical therapy this morning and iced my knee when I came back. Now, perhaps, I will get more warmed up, feel better, get my bag packed, get ready. I am not checking a bag so I am getting by with a carry-on. It will be interesting to see how well I do packing. I usually fill my car with stuff. No extras this time. No computer even - but I am bringing my iPad and I'll use that to continue with blog posts while in Vegas. Plus the computer keyboard I am using now, the one that goes with my iMac.  It's seriously time to get out of here and into...there you are! 15 minutes.

This post was written as part of NHBPM – 30 health posts in 30 days:

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