Friday, July 24, 2015

Catch-Up #2: The Adventure Continues!

Abby not only wants drawings of herself;  she also wants me to draw Nate.  But just as I'm racing to finish his, she's telling me "draw more Abby!"

The next morning is a karate lesson for Nate.  Picture twenty or so 4 and 5 years olds practicing karate.  Lots of wandering off to check out a corner of the room, of being pulled back into the group by the very patient teacher, of little kids doing something in their heads.  "Don't use your karate skills, these special tools, to hit other kids, or your brothers and sisters..." admonishes the teacher.  "Or your mother" adds the woman sitting on the floor next to me, sotto voce.

Minutes after we arrive, the ancient clothes dryer curls up and dies.  Of course there is already a load of wash finished washing;  so we bring it out to the pool area and drape it over furniture and bushes to dry.  I enjoy the colors and unusual shapes above the placid blue water and the pretty tiles.
 On Sunday we all go for a hike at a nature reserve near Maplewood.  Nate walks the whole two miles, and we all pick wild raspberries to eat as we go.  It's cool and dry and perfect.  At one point E , with Abby on his back, crawls under a fallen tree that spans the trail.  We pass a reservoir, a wonderful garden trellis with a gate in it that connects the trail with someone's back garden,  a chipmunk-filled woods, a George Washington memorial lookout at the top, a sign incised on the back of a bench telling us that "WAR IS BAD."
After the hike some of us drive to Trader Joe's.  I wait in the car and draw this tree at the edge of the parking lot.  In the afternoon we hike downtown to the park for the Maplewoodstock festival.  I am intrigued by an African booth, where I find a little leather envelope-style bag that slides in and out of a larger leather cover.
On Monday Maya, Nate, P and I troop down to the train station and head into the city.  Nate is a fan of trains, and lucky us get to sit in the emergency seat!  N asks me "What would happen if I pulled  that handle?"  We all make up an elaborate story about a child emergency handle-puller ejector, and N insists on a diagram.  After I finish it he tells me to write "not Nate" and "not real" in icons.
Maya watches for Penn Station.
Our destination today is the Metropolitan Museum, where Nate wants to see a mummy in bandages and Maya wants to see the original painting of Washington Crossing the Delaware, which she has learned about in her fifth grade social studies class.  Amazingly, and after a l-o-n-g search and many questions asked to guards, we succeed in finding a mummy inside a case wearing linen bandages.  You can just glimpse it under the decorated mummy case, just like it was exhibited.  Nate draws designs on my drawing.

On the right is a quick diagrammatic sketch of the enormous Washington Crossing the Delaware.  Maya spots it in the 19th century painting area.  Very very exciting for her to see the real painting after seeing only tiny reproductions.  We spend another couple of hours in the museum, after which Nate tells me "I love the Met."
After the Met, we grab a taxi to Central Park Zoo, where we are lucky enough to see the elusive snow leopard as well as a great penguin exhibit, a bat exhibit, large bears, and the tropical rain forest center. Another taxi takes us down to the station, and we finally slid into seats on the train.  In our rush to get the train, we get on an express train by accident and end up a stop further than Maplewood.  I sketch this street scene in Summit as we wait for E to come pick us up.
On the left is Nate's stuffed penguin that he bought with his savings at the zoo gift shop.  And on the right, some chickens for New Hampshire.  Tomorrow:  New Hampshire, back to Manhattan, and home.

1 comment:

  1. Gwen, I think the little leather bag may be a Moroccan one. I have something similar.