Friday, April 28, 2006

The missus and I would like to express our kindest thanks for your congratulations and shared stories of home ownership.

We're just a little giddy about the prospect of owning our own home again. Maybe you can tell?

Barb watches happily as I sign away our paychecks for the next thirty years. We felt much less nervous about it this time around (we were homeowners in a previous life).

The sun rose on our last full day in Cottage Grove today. After the closing, we ate lunch on the kitchen floor of our very own house.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

One of the oddest-looking buildings in Madison has got to be Best Western's "Inn On The Park," the hotel at the corner of Main and Carroll streets. If you're walking south along Carroll and look up, you'll see a rather boring-looking typical hotel building with no distinguishing features, other than the odd-sized picture window below the top floor.

Draw a little closer, though, and you see a different building ... it almost looks like two buildings: one slightly more interesting high-rise with wider, more visually interesting bay windows on the lake side, being swallowed by the blocky, boring chunk of a building, which has the appearance of having descended from space, possibly to transmogrify all our beautiful old architecture into Soviet-style block houses.

Look at that lovely scalloped corner, fighting to hold off the blockification crushing down on it. There was so much potential for this building until the architectural firm of Nickolai Ivanovich Sovietsky & Assoc. took over the design project and turned it into an experiment in nuveau concret.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Madison's renovated Museum of Contemporary Art opened last weekend. It seems to be most well-known for the glass prow-like corner that sticks out from the corner of Henry and State Streets. A glass stairway winds its way up the inside of the prow, where visitors can pause to watch the crowd on State Street, or just stand around in a group on a landing and chat.

The museum had some art, too, but the glass prow and the stairway was visually much more engaging. Make of that what you will.

As you walk up you can see each tread edge-on; they appear to be several layers of glass laminated for strength.

It's an intriguing idea and it was executed wonderfully, but if I hear one more person call them a "stairway to heaven" I'll puke.

From inside the prow a visitor can see three other triangle buildings: the one on the right is a Noodles restaurant, directly out front there's the world-famous Triangle Market, and just off to the left there's an Italian restaurant, Tutto Pasta Trattoria.

One last look back ...

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

A fetching view of Lake Mendota from the steps of the capital, looking up North Hamilton Street.

What's that bit of orange, caught in the tree to the right?

The tulips on the north lawn are yellow; those on the south lawn are red & pink. They've all blossomed this week, just in case you want to plan a trip to see them next year.

One last view of the capitol, the trees leafing out and lady Forward shining in the sun.

"That shall also content me."

Monday, April 24, 2006

We made a "pre-closing inspection" of our soon-to-be home sweet home last Saturday. The seller has moved nearly everything of his out of the house, with the notable exception of about a dozen pairs of shoes. The few remaining odds and ends were apparently destined for the dumpster parked in the driveway.

We're counting the hours now ...

We've moved house so many times to date that we know this spacious-looking room will soon be impassibly clogged with stacks of boxes and haphazardly-arranged furniture. We think of that, and sigh.

But it'll be our clogged room. No more living like a peeg in Potter's Field!

I'll be grilling bratwurst on that deck soon enough! Okay, technically I'll be grilling brats on a Weber BBQ, because the deck by itself doesn't get nearly hot enough, but the Weber, the brats and I will all be on the deck.

And B is already planning to scatter pots of herbs here, to catch the morning sun.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

To Market, To Market

My Darling B inspects the herbs on offer at the Dane County Farmer's Market, which opened for the season this weekend. She's already loaded up on baked goods, and she'll move on to the flowering plants next.