A billowing pile of smoke was rising from the fire we had lit inside the antique wood-burning fireplace that was housed inside the authentic, hand-made old-fashioned log cabin we rented in South Lake Tahoe through Airbnb. I could feel my eyes begin to water as the white indoor clouds reached the vaulted, lodge-pole daring ceilings upstairs.
“Maybe we should open up a window?” My friend was attempting to stifle the smoke in the fireplace after trying to circulate the heat from the flames around the living room.
“Yeah, maybe that’s best,” I coughed. I took a quick look upstairs to possibly open up another window. I couldn’t tell at first if we had killed our other friend, who has asthma and was lying in a bed upstairs until I heard the sounds of snoring from underneath the comforter return to their normal steady rhythm. (more…)
“So, why on earth are you in Canada if you’re from California?” The young man was standing just outside the Toronto Eaton Centre passing out flyers for something or other when he struck up a conversation between my sister and myself. We were heading toward the crosswalk and on our way to grab a couple of Canadian beers and pizza.
My sister turned to the guy with the flyers again. “We just wanted to visit for fun.”
The real reason falls somewhere between my sister’s weird obsessions with the Great White North and my desire to travel the entire globe. Canada was not my first choice, but I was curious to see how America’s hat actually lived. (more…)
“What is art?” A short older lady with graying hair asked the high school intermediate art class. She waited for the small group of students sitting behind art supplies that were laid out on top of long wooden folding tables to slowly raise their hands. She pointed at a girl sitting near the back of the room. “Yes, you.”
“Art has to be beautiful,” she paused for a moment. “It should be a realistic reflection of all the good things God has created.”
Mind you, I was attending a private Christian school, and everything anyone said about anything had something to do with Jesus.
“Okay, but what about the post-modern art we see nowadays in pop-up galleries and museums?” She started to walk slowly down the row of parallel tables towards the back of the room. “What about the ‘art’ (she threw up air quotes) that isn’t realistic?” (more…)
Within the span of four hours in the car that had carried us up and over hills and traveled beside the ocean, we had driven under a sky that had gone from a murky brown to a clear bright blue, to a cool misty gray. My sister and I had decided to visit my dad at his new place in San Luis Obispo for the weekend. We planned on leaving early that morning from Orange County and meeting up for lunch on the Central Coast.
We ended up spending the rest of the day getting a tour of the college town from our dad, sampling the local coffee, and walking along the various piers that gave beautiful views of the ocean. (more…)