Weekend bonus shot, 09.19.11 (Monday edition)


Window watcher, Berkeley, CA.

The window he’s looking out is the back door, not the front.  We live in Berkeley, CA (better known, perhaps, as “Berzerkeley” or “The People’s Republic of Berkeley”) and we’ve seen stilt walkers, solitary harmonica players, muttering grocery cart pushers, cell phone-clutching subway-bound commuters, skateboard riders, and a three-legged neighbor dog stroll, roll, hustle, and lope east and west in front of our house.  Still, all the real action takes place out the back window.

Out back is where the shared yard is, through which his cousins daily pass en route to their home at the north of the lot; out back is where his kind, endlessly fascinating neighbor friend (my own friend, of over 20 years) lives in the building to the east; out back is where most of his and his sister’s adventures unfold: on the grass, under the bushes, on the trampoline (and under it), in the hammock, around the veggie bed, and on the chalk drawing-bedecked concrete between two of the houses.

Read moreWeekend bonus shot, 09.19.11 (Monday edition)

Weekend bonus shot (Monday edition), 09.12.11


Birthday dinner table, empty and full, Berkeley, CA

At table, and in relation to the birthday girl, clockwise from bottom: grandfather; grandmother’s partner (grandbaba); adult friend/ fellow co-housing “villager”; special aunt; younger special cousin; co-housing “villager” girl cousin; grandmother; mother; co-housing “villager” uncle & aunt with boy cousin in between; special uncle. Baba behind the camera, per usual.

Not at table: birthday girl (in another room, having a post-prandial read); her younger brother (up to no good somewheres off camera); her elder special cousin (off on a bike trip for her high school); her East coast-dwelling Aunt; her Midwest-dwelling grandpa; her nearby yet far away Aunt, Uncle, & cousin; and, both furthest away and ineffably present, the grandmother, whom she never met but experiences in me daily, and her oldest cousin, whom she knew just for six months but whose shadow and light falls on nearly everything her parents see.

Read moreWeekend bonus shot (Monday edition), 09.12.11