Finding new among the known

In pursuit of two things I hadn’t been able to find in Halifax and necessary for this trip, as well as a third that I can’t imagine finding there and need within a month, I took myself on a wonderfully scenic walk to 4th Street yesterday morning. (The things in question?  I’ll publicize only one: a handbag for the wedding Saturday).  There had been rain early in the day–before dawn–but by 10, the sun was out and much of the walk was perfect picture taking light.

Homesick as I remember being when sent to sleep away camp at the age of seven, I clicked like mad in an effort o preserve familiar sights, a rather dumb approach to being with the sights in the moment.

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I hadn’t found a suitable place to look for a handbag that I could stand–although on 4th street there are, even in this economy, boutiques pushing studded suitcase sorts of things for a mere $300, but a handpainted sign pointed me south toward a possible setting for one. Indeed!  I wound up in a world I’d never known, that of the boutique handbag factories. No sweatshops these, but something between guilds and giant craft salons. And, outside the web, apparently no way to chance across them except on foot and when looking really, really hard.
IMG_1132Much later, I was lucky enough to see Fred’s friend Dean and my friends, his parents, for supper and, as ever, they were filled with wonderful stories (well, some not so wonderful given the state of the state’s economy and Judith’s job with Healthy Kids).  Dean had tales of being the singular Berkeley-bred kid when his new uni friends were faced with their first “protest” (an amalgam of demands including better pizza and more Palestinian student admittances), and, as ever, had polished up some specific to his audience of the moment, to wit, the librarians.

Which one of which gives me a ‘sploring option for today of which, like Libaire, I never knew:  apparently there’s a “people’s library” out in the wilds of Albany Bulb, parkland to the north of Berkeley where denizens who prefer to go unsheltered spend their social lives and where artists, I’ve seen, have built extraordinary guerilla works from the immediate supply of debris.

The day ended with something not new at all, but a rare find outside of Berkeley, in my experience: the delicate sweet pink of rose flavored gelatto, a taste not unlike the day.

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