I stole an hour this morning to ride with a regular group who meet every Wednesday at 8am. It was a pristine morning, with a few remaining wisps of mist contrasting with the dark green conifers in the creases of the higher hills. My road was all dappled sunlight snaking up to the stables; a Doe with two spotted fawns popped out of the creek-bed and crossed in front of me. I drive with deer and cyclists in mind on this road; although last week it was a double truck-trailer rig that almost wiped me out. His front end was on track but the rear trailer completely cut across the corner I was planning on driving around. I could see from the driver's face that he knew he had come close to disaster. I was able to hug the hill and brake in time but it was down to an inch or less.
The entrance to the stable is through their vineyards. Workers were out nurturing the grape vines; they drive small electric vehicles similar to a golf-cart pick-up truck conversion; painted green, of course. There are tractors too, but the small stuff gets done quietly.
Back down the hill afterwards, a "Flash-Shower", clean clothes and letting my hair dry with the car windows open. Detour to a job site that needed some instant answers and in to our business to approve an edge detail for the hearth of a fireplace that is under fabrication.
A new client meeting scheduled for 11:30 am in nearby Palo Alto, to meet all members of a design/build company with some good projects sprouting around the area. I was on time for my appointment, but only just; many surrounding streets were closed and police were everywhere. The ensuing traffic snarls and lack of parking can be laid at the feet of Russian President Medvedev, who was in town to speak at Stanford and decided to visit Yandex Labs, the largest internet company in Russia (except they are here). Per the local news website, Medvedev sauntered down the street with secret service and motorcade in tow, and spoke to local spectators, many of whom had just finished watching the World Cup Football Games at Antonio's NutHouse.
It was just as hard to get out of there after my appointment. Nose to tail traffic made me depart in the opposite direction to that which would lead me home for lunch. Even though I know my way around it was time consuming and laborious.
By the time I got to our house, Hubby had eaten and was taking a short nap before the second phase of the work day. We had received a delivery from the Exotic Meat Company. I unwrapped Wild Boar Bacon and Boar Chops (from Feral Swine, it proclaimed on the packaging). There were Venison sausages and stewing meat, as well as a roast. Everything arrives vacuum sealed and frozen, transported in dry ice to ensure freshness. I used to order from this internet source when Lovely Daughter and her Husband were first stationed at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. I couldn't send them wine, they were too young to sign for the shipments. Their 5th wedding anniversary is coming up soon and they are doing so well in life and careers that I was happy to order something that would bring back memories and just be a fun and useful gift. I packed their share in a cooler and delivered it to Lovely Daughter's work place at the end of her day.
I had received a call from my sister, who is ensconced in rural England. We have horses in common and she once also had a French Husband. He, and her previous ex-boyfriend both managed to be pedestrians killed by cars, although one was in Italy and the other in the U.S. at the time. Her current husband and the father of her son works in Siberia three weeks out of every six. Fiona takes good care of her horse, her son and the neighbor's rescue greyhound.
The neighbor is a famous lady artist, full of her own importance and living in what was once the Manor House. My sister has the little cottage down the lane that is overgrown by the trees that flourish from next door and steal her light. Last time they needed pruning there was much hullabaloo. Apparently, even if you rarely go outside and can't see these trees from your house it is impossible not to interfere with work that your neighbor has undertaken.
The root of the problem was disclosed today, when Fiona went to discuss sharing the impending 700 pound tree trimming bill with the owner of said trees. "But you live in the Wood Cutter's cottage" said Marge " The Wood Cutter always takes care of the trees".
My other link to a partial childhood/adolescence in Cornwall is a friend who is very successful in marketing consulting for firms in Silicon Valley. She needed to meet to brainstorm a transformation of her house and garden. She has become a quirky germo-phobe, who believes in alternative medecines of all kinds. When we spoke to set up a get together she was at the vet's office with her favorite chicken, who was unwell. The chicken is spending the night under observation and, in her absence, we decided on a navy blue front door and cancellation of a trip to the U,K, tomorrow for the Christening of a new family member this weekend. I further suggested that she put her teenage son on the plane by himself so that she could recuperate and get some work done uninterrupted to pay for the pending money-pit of renovations.
One of my frustrations today was that there was a news story, in which I was interested, on my talk radio station in the car. It seemed as though every breaking news update was announced right when I had to get out and leave my car to do other things. I was able to catch up with the gist of it but missed some important press conferences and commentaries.
My last achievement of the work day was pinning down "she of the sage cleansed house" to a rendez-vous tomorrow morning. " If I am not there please call me at my other house number" she requested. "Oh sure!" I thought to myself. "My time is of no importance" " I look forward to seeing you" (Swallow bile).