While traveling to India this time, we flew Emirates through Dubai Airport. The first leg of the journey was over 13 hours but it worked out well. Once the dinner was over and the lights dimmed, we still had plenty of time left to sleep for the night, and it didn’t feel like we were jolted awake at 3 in the morning. I was very excited to see Dubai from the plane and although we didn’t have window seats, our plane had cameras that we could access on our movie screens. One view pointed directly down to the ground and one showed the pilots view. We watched as our plane went over the downtown area with all the skyscrapers, and we watched the buildings dwindle in height as we flew toward the airport. Eventually random squares were dispersed in the desert, some filling with wind driven sand. Most areas were sandy with scrubby brush, then a bright green rectangle would appear, or one filled with trees and plants in a line. The highways from above looked very orderly and geometric, with many roundabouts.
As we entered Dubai Airport, the first thing we noticed was the quiet – this is a no announcement airport. It is a very sleek , modern airport and we had to take several elevators and a tram to get to our terminal. As we went up an escalator suddenly we heard a soft Namaz, call to prayer, it was soothing and ethereal. I still feel this is one of the most beautiful sounds in the world. This airport was a dream – not crowded or noisy, no lines, and we didn’t have to go through yet another security check. We could go from terminal to terminal freely. I feel that this is the way to travel in future.
One easy four hour flight and we were in Bangalore. Gopal, my 84 year old father in law, was there to meet us as usual at 3 a.m. Bangalore time. He is truly amazing. So we are now SOD in Bangalore and battling jetlag.
Who knew I could fall in love again after 50? …..with a new medium! I have been taking pottery classes since last November and although I have a lot to learn and I need practice, I absolutely love it. I didn’t take a picture of my first two mugs (not worth showing) but this is one of the first bowls I made. I like the black and white glaze with the yellow eggs.
I am enjoying making utilitarian objects and when I’m at the wheel, I don’t think about anything else in my life – just clay, just form. It is such a pleasure. I’m experimenting with glazes and I have to say, this is the part that I find the hardest to understand. I have had a few failures. These small ice cream bowls were all thrown from the same large mound and the interior was finished with a cd to make the curve.
My first attempt at sgraffito went pretty well, but I think I liked the bird vase better before glazing – although I do like the ‘sunset surprise’. I used a small sgraffito tool that was a bit difficult to control, so I bought a new set of small carving tools and my next attempt went much better.
The bright colored tools come in many shapes and sizes. This shows the octopus in progress, before firing. I’m much happier with this one. I’m hoping to do a lot more work like this as my skills improve. For now I’m just experimenting but I will be keeping the glaze very simple on this one. Perhaps just transparent white.
I made some cups and played with glazes with some better results. These two will be going to India for my mother and father-in-law (please don’t spoil the surprise).
I think this is my new favorite glaze.
I feel that showing up at the studio every week and making something useful has made me feel more creative in other areas of my life. It keeps the juices flowing and I have been feeling very inspired when I sit down to draw.
Whereas humans have X and Y chromosomes, chickens have Z and W. ZZ for male and ZW for female. The male side has a spur on its leg, a red comb and wattle, a greater mass of breast structure and a heavier bone structure. Split down the middle with brown on one side, gold and white on the other, this is a true male-female chimera.
This is the story of the bimorphic gynandromorph who couldn’t sing. He/she is split down the middle, with the red side being male and the gray side female.
The following is from a BBC article on gynandromorph animals by David Robson:
‘Unsurprisingly, courtship for these animals sometimes presents difficulties…..The other birds largely seemed to ignore it. This isolation is apparently common for gynandromorphs. Either they are quietly shunned, or actively attacked, by their peers’
Haven’t we all felt this at some time in our lives? There is something so sad and beautiful about this bird with no mate and no song.
My newest drawing – isn’t nature amazing? The female blue crab or Sook, has a red claw and the male or Jimmy, has a blue one. The shape on the underside of the shell is also different. This She/He is divided right down the middle – bilateral gynandromorph.
On a side note, it feels so great to finally use these round sheets of paper that I made over ten years ago.
A title I have stolen from Patricia Edmonds in the January 2017 Issue of National Geographic.
This is not just a drawing. I feel it says something special, so I have moved it from my last post to this one. To quote the NG article: ‘The difference in appearance between a species’ males and females is called sexual dimorphism. The term implies that there’s a bisecting line between sexes, a clear divide. But in the animal kingdom, a lot of creatures straddle it.’
I thought this ‘bilateral gynandromorph’ so beautiful that I had to draw it. And I post it today in support of the Women’s March yesterday, and the spirit of openness and acceptance that it engenders. Get it? En-genders? 🙂
March on ladies, and the gentlemen who support them!
As it has been almost a year to the date since I posted anything, I thought it might be time to end this blog. But after looking at it again I realize that I still enjoy it. So just a small post for now, of some drawings I’ve done this year and one I finished today