Monday, May 23, 2011

What does one pea brain come up with when let loose with a camera?

Here is todays video try. Thanks to my very good friend LM who spent the whole afternoon helping me shoot this video, and also lending me the software and adding her bigger brain to my smaller one so that I could get the dang thing on youtube.
Thanks for the suggestions Mia- I hope this is better.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Some catching up to do!

I haven't been gone, but I have been super busy. But aren't we all?

First- there are changes in the wind for one of my jobs. That's all I can say about it, but I'm a little spooked. So I feel like I'm walking a razor wire (through no fault of my own) and that is not a good feeling. More on that little topic much later when things are settled.

B- Will winter EVER end? My garden looks like H E double toothpicks right now and it is clouding up and looking like we might get more rain today. Everytime I look out my back door I feel discouraged. But today rain or shine I'm going out there and planting something!

Three- After a long and very emotional soul searching- and many many weepy evening- I have decided to sell Desi and find another horse to show. After the wet and rainy and wild GNG show, I finally realized that he isn't happy- AND NEITHER AM I! Like a very bad relationship, I kept making excuses and trying to 'fix' it. But there isn't any fixing to be done. He's a great horse but he wants a job that gets him out of the arena and I want him to have a job IN the arena.  He is on Dreamhorse and on Bay Area Equine Network (Bay Desperado)  and I've had a few inquieries. Of course he won't go to just any ol' body- it will have to be the right home. I still love him after all and want him to be happy! The very hardest part was the decision to let go ( isn't it always). As a younger woman I would have ridden the snot out of him and been perfectly happy to find him that other job- but I'm not as full of vinegar as I once was- another hard pill to swallow-and I don't want a horse I am fighting and picking on all of the time. I want to go to the horse shows. My goal is to make it to the AQHA Select show, and I won't make it there with Desi.
I know in the long run he'll be happier and so will I.

Here is the video Lil Mama made today- it isn't very good. Jr is in the back ground chattering away, there are motorcycles going by and dogs barking, and someone put their horse in my pen which made Desi's head go up. But here it is anyway... There will be a better one on YouTube soon.

And just for fun, here is a video of Jr and the barn cat Tiger...

Monday, May 16, 2011

An Icon of America Right in my Own Backyard.

The Most beautiful Bridge Ever Built
 The Golden Gate Bridge is only about 30 minutes away from my very own house. How Lucky am I?

The Approach to the Bridge

In the commission of my job I was sent across the Golden Gate Bridge into Marin. I wasn't driving my own truck, but the vehicle of another employee- so I was a little nervous.
I made my way through the mean streets of San Francisco, which actually weren't so mean after all, and onto the Bridge.
It was amazing, it's tall orange spires rising above the road, the glittering city on my right, the chopping green bay below. The day was brilliant, no fog in sight which is weird for San Francisco.
I made it to Marin, and on the way back I was able to sneak my camera phone ( that trusty damn camera phone!) out of my bag and take a quick couple of pictures.
As I was marvelling at the construction, the style and the color of the Gold Gate Bridge I remembered the last time I had travelled across the Bridge.
It was in 1974.
1974, I lived in Santa Rosa going to school. One of my boyfriends and a couple of other friends decided to travel down to San Francisco, and tow a Volkswagen mini bus home. Yep, with a tow bar and chain.
We were eighteen - or so-.
As we travelled down the road, it was a pretty steep incline with a dog leg to the left, my boyfriend looks out his window and comments " Oh, look, there is a bus just like mine going past us."
We all looked over to the fast lane and fer sure there was an identical bus flying past us going about 80.
Then we looked behind us.....
only to discover that the bus that had passed us was the bus that we HAD been towing.
It was unoccupied, no driver and the wheel wasn't tied off or anything, so it continued past and when the road did that dog leg- the bus ran straight, right over the guard rail and down the small embankment.
To say we were shocked would be an understatement.
Yep, it sure would.
The girls and I hitched a ride back to Santa Rosa, and the boys stayed to pull the VW up out of the ditch.
I laugh today about that bright green and white bus flying past us!
And that ,my friends was the last time I had a chance to cross that bridge!
Why? Because I live in the East Bay and the Bridge is in the north Bay. I get into San Francisco by crossing the Bay Bridge, or going under the water in the BART Train.
So back to the Bridge.
It was completed in 1937 for 37 Million Dollars. The project was only 5 months later than the deadline and the came in under budget by a million and a half dollars. The Designer and architect was named Strauss and he received a Million Dollars for bringing the project in so well, as well as a free for life toll pass. I'd sure like to have that pass now- the toll to cross is $6.00
My husband's Grandfather Brooks came to America from England to help build this very bridge as well as the Bay Bridge that we travel over. Grandpa actually had to make his own tools to be a carpenter/mason in the early 1930's. One morning he actually fell from the Bay Bridge- fell thirty feet into the rocks and water. He wasn't a swimmer, but someone hauled him out of the water. Unfortunately his tools went into the drink with him and they were not recovered.
He went to work the next day using borrowed tools.

View from the Truck

 There have been many suicides that have jumped off the Bridge, but in the last two months two teenagers, at different times, have jumped off the bridge and survived! That is practically unheard of. The Bridge is not only high and wide, it crosses some of the most treacherous and cold waters known to man. If the drop don't kill ya, the cold or sharks or current probably will. Both kids were reported by surfers in the water ( can you say crazy?) and one surfer actually pulled the first young man onto his board until the Coast Guard got there. The second, the girl was pulled from the water within five minutes of her going in. Amazing.
The Bridge has a distinct color Orange and it is painted non stop. By time they finish it is time to begin again.
The Navey wanted to paint it yellow and black, so it would stand out in the fog!
The roadway has been expanded since 1937, but there are no physical barriers on the bridge- The lanes are change twice a day for the commute. See those little bitty markers on the left of the picture? Those are the lane markers, Cars whizz past you going 65- it's a trip! Luckily at noon when I was on the way back to SF the roads were a little less busy and I took these pictures.
The towers have an art deco look to them, and it fits with the semi goth scene of the Ancient Precedio all around it, especially the Military Cemetery.
I was also stuck by the feel of theNorth Beach neighborhoods. It looks and feels a lot like ever other beach town on the California Coast. The building have a glaring whitewashed look to them, the streets seem to be laid out in the same kind of way. Surfers still stand on the shore assessing waves. The air feels clear and salty- just as I like it.
So though I have been under the bridge several time in the last forty years,and flown over it once or twice. I wont let it be another thirty before I cross this beauty again.
Dangerous -yes.
Thrilling- Yes!
Worth seeing- YES!!!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

First things first...

First things First... The May Auction in Alameda...

I know I have been remiss in my duties! I mean to say that I am so sorry that I didn't publish these auction goodies sooner. They are great and they have all been sold- as a matter of fact, the auction is nearly set for the June event and there should be some great old 'barn' items in it including saddles and shafts of an old cart.
But these caught my eye and they didn't go for too much this time- although a couple of pieces of Ivory scrimshaw from the early 1800's did sell for over $2000.

This adorable cabinet from 1910-30 sold for $75.00. I think that is a real bargain because it is solid oak and it was in perfect condition ( even though my picture is fuzzy). It had an interesting cage type shelf on the upper left, and a glass front on the bookcase. These were made a lot of the time by Sears and sold through a catalog.

This beauty went for about $350. Solid Oak with a black and white marble top. The mirror was beveled, but the struts that held the mirror to the base were a little bug eaten. Still, that would be an easy fix. A dealer bought this and he'll have it in his shop for at least $1000.

I don't need dishes, lord knows I don't have any room to store them, but I really thought about bidding on this complete set.It had creamer and suger with lids, cream soup bowls, a pedestal petit four standing plate, gravy boat, platters and dinner size dishes. So sweet! I think it went for under $100. 

A Tiffany style lamp, beautiful leaded glass shade and metal base. $100!

Print of a watercolor under glass with a great framing job! Not a Tim Cox, but similar- it went for... wait for it....

So there it is in a nut shell. There was a lot of good stuff there this time and the prices were pretty good for the buyers. I didn't get as many pictures as I'd have liked but they have given me a little more responsibility at the Auction house- I'm managing the Preview Staff and some other stuff- so I am a little more ' under the glass' theses days.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

At the Auction today~

This guy bought all this stuff and then like many- didn't know quite what to do with it!