Thursday, August 31, 2006
Cemetery
"I could not count the times during the average day when something would come up that I needed to tell him, ... This impulse did not end with his death.

....What ended was the possibility of response."

-Joan Didion

****

It's been a while since I went.

Mostly because it's too painful and I don't like the cemetery.

It's around the corner from my house. The *only* thing that's walking distance in the residential area we live in.

This time my youngest sister wanted to tag along. She rode beside me on her pink scooter.

"Whose grave are you visiting, again?"

"My ex-boyfriend"

"Did I ever meet him?"

"Yes, You wouldn't remember him. You were only 3 years old the last time you saw him but he used to make you giggle".

Amber squinted her eyes and stared off into space. I could see she was trying to form a mental image in her mind of his face and was coming up blank.

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"What did he look like?"

"Dark brown hair, warm big brown eyes and he was tall. He had a great smile...He was my first love".

"How did he die?"

I didn't answer. I was trying to find the right words to explain but I didn't need to. She remembered.

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"But Why?" She asked after a long silence

"I don't know"

"Did you cry alot?"

"yes"

"Do you still miss him?"

"yes"

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"Why is that pile of dirt there?"

"It's an open grave...don't get too close to the edge"

"They throw the body in that hole?"

"the body is put in a casket and then lowered into the hole with a machine"

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We reached him.

I put a single daisy on his grave and ran my finger over the carved letters of his name. My sister watched in silence.

We walked home together.

During the walk my sister told me about the last sleepover party she went to. Her voice filled with youth, innocence and cheerfulness. "So THEN we found this frog behind the pool! A real frog! It was so small and brown and Andrea said..."


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*****

"Seeing death as the end of life is like seeing the horizon as the end of the ocean."
-David Searls

"Death is a challenge. It tells us not to waste time... It tells us to tell each other right now that we love each other."
-Leo F. Buscaglia
 
posted by Clarity25 at 2:16 PM | 15 comments
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Blame it on the Rain
"This is an epidemic!"

That's what I cried out when I entered our bedroom and saw yet another huge Daddy long legs right next to the light switch. I moved my hand away quickly and involuntarily shivered.

"Well, there has been an unusual increase in spiders lately in our bedroom... but I would hardly call it an epidemic", Eric laughed, scooping up the 4th huge spider off the wall and taking it outside. The 4th time in the past few days. They keep getting larger and larger...

I was going to post some more life size spider shots, but my last photograph didn't receive a warm reception. I wont put my friends through that again. So instead here's two small blurry thumbnails of the most recent culprits.


I can't figure out where they are coming from and how they're getting in. The slits in the air conditioner? Why are they just in OUR room and no other room in the house? I know I'm going to wake up one of these mornings with a massive spider crawling up my face and I can tell you right now that I wont handle it well. .

And yes, yes I know .... they don't bite and they're supposed to symbolize good luck..Spiders are our "friends"...etc etc.

I'm coming to term with my new roommates... I just can't stop the goosebumps from spreading over my body at the sight of those eight long quivering legs

Maybe it's all the rain lately.....Perhaps the spiders are seeking shelter in our bedroom? There is one in the corner of the room right now watching me type this and Eric isn't here to escort it outside. They're taking over...

**********

The weather has been horrible over the past few days. Damp, cold and wet. We were planning on taking a trip into the city yesterday but we woke up to the sound of rain pounding down on the roof. I peered out the window and could barely see my neighbors house through the sheets of rain. So much for Central Park...


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On top of that, Eric was feeling sick.

He spent the day in bed, and I rested beside him stroking his hair. I was so worried about him.

His fever has subsided today.


****

I finally opened a flickr account (HERE). It took me 2 years of people telling me to sign up before I actually decided to really check it out. I know a lot of my friends also have flickr accounts, please share your URL with me so I can add you to my contact list and view your photo albums. I'm still trying to figure out how it all works. ...
 
posted by Clarity25 at 2:23 PM | 17 comments
Saturday, August 26, 2006
A day off
Someone left a comment complaining that I only post pictures of my husband and I'm never in any of the shots. I prefer to remain the elusive blogger and just use photography to show every day life through my eyes.

However sometimes I make exceptions, there you go....

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Today Eric had the day off. We went shopping together. That's a photograph of him trying on a pair of jeans. (As you can see, I just snuck into the men's dressing room with him.).

Afterwards we were in the mood for German food and Eric was feeling a bit homesick. There are very few places here where I live that serves anything remotely similar to a traditional German meal. We ended up at Boston Market. Close enough...

I realize that my new camera has a movie video recording function. I tried it out in the car on our way to a Second Hand shop after lunch. This one is for All-on-Paper ;)

***video will be back up soon****

Okay, I know what's running through your mind after viewing that clip. You're thinking: "Clarity your videos *really* suck." Alright Yes. This is true. But In my defense... the footage is so shaky because Eric was pressing on the car brake to the beat of "Laura" by the Scissor Sisters, causing me to rock back and forth. Hey it's a start....It's a fifteen second intimate glimpse into our daily life.

At the second hand shop I bought this for only 2.99:


It was my favorite movie from 10 years ago. I loved it so much in highschool that I had convinced the owner of our local video store to sell me the official rental copy off the shelf for 15 dollars. He sold it under the table. In college we watched it in my dorm room so many times that it had lines running through the middle of it. Eventually my Senior year I lent it to a friend and she lost it. I never saw it again... When I stumbled on this video today at the second hand shop I was thrilled. Does it anyone remember this film?

Eric and I are going to curl up together on the sofa and watch it right now. So I'm off...

I'll leave you with this. The creepiest looking porcelain doll I've ever seen.



It was about 4 feet tall (like a life size Linda Blair replica) and resided in the antique section of the shop. It was priced at 50 dollars, and it's purple eyes seemed to follow me around the store. Certain porcelain dolls are up there with Clowns on the creep out scale in my book. I'm sure it's head spins entirely around when no one is watching. Who would buy that thing?

 
posted by Clarity25 at 11:16 PM | 18 comments
Friday, August 25, 2006
Spider
Arachnophobia is a specific phobia, a fear of spiders. With an estimated half of all women, and one fourth of all men in the United States, it is among the most common of phobias.

"...Recent studies of spider phobia indicate that fear of spiders is closely associated with the disease-avoidance response of disgust. It is not immediately clear how spiders might have become associated with this response, although examination of the relevant historical literature does indicate a close association between spiders and illness in European cultures from tenth century onward. The development of this association between spiders and illness appears to be closely linked to the many devastating and inexplicable epidemics that crossed Europe from the Middle Ages onwards. Spiders were found in great numbers in the same areas of the house where rats lived. The fleas on these rats were actually the carriers of the plague. Not the spiders but the fear was passed down through our culture."

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Eric doesn't understand why the sight of that spider (actual size) caused goosebumps to shoot up my arms this morning. I couldn't stop the initial impulse to shrink away when I laid eyes on it. It was too close for comfort and twitching it's legs. Not the first thing I want to see when I first wake up and roll over in bed.

"oh my god...it's huge..", I whispered. I rubbed at my upper arms. I felt like I had to brush off invisible spiders that were beginning to crawl over me.

"It's just a cute Daddy Long Legs, they're harmless"

"that's not cute...look it has fangs"

Eric just laughed. He reached over and let it crawl rapidly onto the palm of his hand.

I jumped back and pressed my body against the wall. "Don't you dare come near me with that thing!"

"What...like this?"

"AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!"

That was my morning.

I don't understand why the sight of any spider evokes terror inside of me and causes no reaction within Eric. His expression doesn't change... He's fearless. I wish I could be the same.

It's pouring right now. The cats love to sit on the windowsill and listen to the rain splashing on the leaves outside. They press their face against the screen. Fiona is making bird sounds again...


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posted by Clarity25 at 3:38 PM | 13 comments
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
A Happy Day!
I haven't been updating this photoblog as often as I used to with my own pictures because my old camera was on it's last legs and dying. The flash is broken, it's falling apart and pieces are missing. It shuts down for no reason and gives error signs.

I received my Camera two and a half years ago.



It cost 130 dollars and was a scratched floor model. I loved it and carried around with me everywhere. Almost all of the pictures in this photoblog were taken with that camera. The zoom never worked but it didn't matter, I was happy to just have a camera at all. When it started giving me serious problems, I was really upset.

This morning I received a birthday package in the mail from my mother.

When I opened it and saw the contents my eyes filled with tears. I couldn't believe it. I couldn't even move...



I was looking down at my dream camera! A new Sony Cybershot. 6.0 Megapixels, 12x optical zoom and an image stabilizing system. It seemed too good to be true. I had to pinch myself...I was just so happy.

I have a new camera!!

I know to most people this probably doesn't seem like that big of a deal but I've wanted this camera for over a year. I never could afford it (Even though it's reasonably priced) We've just been financially struggling lately.

My Mother is amazing! I can't even begin to say how much gratefulness I feel inside.

I can start taking pictures again!

This is the first one I took with my new camera, just to test it out.

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I'm floored by how vibrant the colors are and how clear the image is. I could go on and on about this, but I just wanted to share my good news. Eric feels like it's his birthday too, He's playing with the new camera right now as I type this. We're both like two overjoyed kids with a brand new toy.

This has been such a happy day for me.



********



Today we visited a very familiar home...


My friend from highschool moved to Florida and she's selling her old house. She and I grew up together. I would ride my bike over to her house on the weekends and I spent countless summers there. Her basement was the main hangout for our group of friends.

That house is filled with beautiful memories and it's sad that she's selling it. It's strange to think that she no longer lives there.

Since she's currently in another state. She asked if we could help her fix up the old property a bit for the future owners.

First task: Mowing the lawn

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Eric mowed and I walked ahead of him removing all the debri from his path. Branches, Big rocks, and pieces of wood.

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Unfortunately it was a more difficult job then we anticipated because the bag kept falling out and the sun was pounding down on us.

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But we'll suffer for a good friend...(who just happens to be reading this)...that's how much we love her.

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That's a few pictures of Eric after a hard days work on that sweltering front lawn... The hours of toil definitely beat down on him. *as you can see*. No... he didn't ham it up for the camera at all, I swear. :)

We tried to get into the backyard, but the poison ivy and vines prevented us...

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see?

I really think my friend shouldn't sell her house and just move back to New York...

we miss her here.


 
posted by Clarity25 at 11:45 AM | 24 comments
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Part Two: Prague
After Italy (see previous entry) My parents flew to Prague for 5 days. My Mother said that Prague was a completely different world from Italy. It was darker, more moody and the buildings pointy & Jagged. It looks like a city out of an old gothic fairytale. Italy was bright and cheerful with cherubs. Prague had gargoyles.

Here are more photographs taken by my father.

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That's the hotel my parents stayed in.


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Prague had a lot of statues sitting on the buildings and faces carved in the architecture. There was artwork everywhere.

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A soldier standing guard in front of a castle. My father said he was stiff as a rod and stared straight ahead. It wouldn't respond to questions or even flinch.


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My Father's dream car. A rare vehicle to see outside of a showroom. (of course he had to take a picture) I'm posting it for my guy friends to see.


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This photo made me miss Germany so much, it reminded me of the town we lived in. Prague has a very German feel to it in certain areas.


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My father had a safe flight back to Iraq. He called my mother to let her know that he was okay. My Mother misses him so much right now and it was hard for them to separate again after this vacation together.

My father will be leaving Iraq and returning to the states for good (hopefully) in October.


******

One last thing. I have a question and I was hoping someone that reads this could help me out

This is my favorite pillow

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It's soft and conforms to the shape of your head. It feels like a big beanie bag and the outside is made of a satin-like material. I can't sleep without it.

The problem is... I have no idea what that symbol means. I assume it's Asian, but I can't find the translation on the internet. I always just figured it means something generic like "good luck" or "fortune". But I just realized it could mean something twisted like "War" or "Hate"

So the question is: Does anyone know the meaning behind the symbol on my pillow??

I take it with me on all my plane flights and had it for a long time... so I'm just really curious.
 
posted by Clarity25 at 2:46 PM | 11 comments
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Part One: Rome, Florence and Venice
My mother returned from her two week trip to Europe. She said the entire experience felt like a dream. She returned with over 500 photographs.

I've always wanted to travel to Italy, so I found the images fascinating. My father took all of them and he has a unique eye when it comes to photography. I thought I'd share a few of the pictures taken during their vacation.

Rome


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This picture was taken during the train ride to Florence.



Florence



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Venice




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That looks like such a postcard shot. I can't even imagine what it must have been like to see that in real life.



Next stop was Prague. It has such a different feel, I'll just post them in another entry later on this week.

It's nice to have my Mother home again. She's still glowing from this romantic trip with my father.
 
posted by Clarity25 at 7:36 PM | 16 comments
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