Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Fire, where's the fire!

It was three o'clock, early Sunday morning on May 23, 2010, I had just turned off the reading light after a few chapters of Tatiana de Rosnay's novel, Sarah's Key and barely dozed off when I heard my name excitedly called out from the living room. Disoriented from the intrusive sudden awakening, the first thing that came to mind was 'fire', where's the fire! Literally, there was a fire. Hungry flames engulfed a building among the few homes that were randomly slapped on the mountain not far from our apartment complex. It looked mean with a promise to full destruction. I felt a sudden pang of sadness as we stood from our third floor apartment living room window watching a horrific site and can't help but wonder and worry that there may be people trapped in that towering inferno.

As we stood by the window for what seemed like an eternity, it was apparent from the movements of revolving red lights, that fire trucks were having to drive back up and down the hill to what we suspected was due to poor water supply in that location, therefore water had to be hauled in from the nearest point of origin.

Later on that day, we learned from the local news that it was the Robles Del Rio Lodge—a vacation destination that sat idle for more than a decade that was completely destroyed by the fire. Sadly, Carmel Valley California had just lost an iconic structure to what the local newspaper reported, 'Fire officials called 'suspicious blaze'.' Although the building can be replaced, the artifacts that were once held inside will never be seen and admired again. But fortunately, no one was injured in the fire.

Never before have I witnessed anything like it. My mind was racing with the consequences and the 'what ifs' as I stood and watched helplessly. It wasn't difficult to figure out when the water supply had run out and when it was in full blast judging from the rise and fall of the blaze. Spent from this awful tragedy, I decided to go back to bed an hour or so later. Sleep didn't come easy and when it finally did, it didn't last very long. It was shortly after 8 when I woke up and immediately got up to see the progress made by the fire crews. A thinning smoke rose and danced with the obvious slight morning breeze into the horizon. I felt at ease knowing that the blaze had been successfully extiguished and the unharmed fire crews were able to contain the fire. This triggers a childhood memory about a time I was asked what I wanted to be when I grow up. "A firefighter." I beamed with purpose.

It is a brand new day, a sad day for some, but for the most part, no one was injured and in some ways, it is a good day! Thank you to the many men and women who have chosen firefighting as a career. Truly, you make a difference!

Patty Cabanas , is the co-editor of Feasts of Phantoms and Sulfur Creek, and copy editor of several Fisher King Press publications, including The Sister from Below and Re-Imagining Mary. Her Out of the Shadows book cover design, have garnered rave reviews from a chorus of Jungian enthusiasts. Find out more about Fisher King Press at www.fisherkingpress.com and Genoa House at www.genoahouse.com.

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Friday, May 14, 2010

Farmers Market

It's Thursday—Farmers Market day on Irwin Street. I've had my first Farmers Market experience at the coast last summer. It was good but not like my experience on Irwin. The previous night, my 'sorta like' dad was talking about his day at the opening last week. Just listening to him made me ache for that same experience minus the aching and blistering feet. "Can you take me with you tomorrow"? what sounded like a little girl's voice excitedly asked. "We leave at about 5 to get a good parking spot" came the immediate reply. The last thing I remember before falling asleep that night was my grandiose plan of taking in as much of the day including a sno-cone, funnel cake and corn-on-the-cob.

Oh how sweet it is! Shortly after 5pm the next day, I walked the sidewalks and the blacktop of Irwin Street. To my right was my 'sorta like' dad and to my left was my 'sorta like' mom who skipped work as an RN because I like to think she wanted to take me to the Farmers Market too. The crowd was thick and the delicious aroma of different food was playing 'catch' with my increasingly excited nostrils. We caught the smell of steaming jambalaya 3 tables down and soon had our first flavor of the Market. The man at the next table was not so lucky and displayed an empty food shelf as the work of a dysfunctional portable fryer. He supposedly has one of the best fried food at that event. It must be my lucky day! I've been spared a few steps into coronary.

As lady L and I walked and browsed the line of tables, our plastic spoons rhythmically worked from the jambalaya to our mouths until we hit the bottom of the container. We had no trouble finding the next Market flavor at a table that offered Portuguese donuts and rolls. Few tables down, a clump of politicians was quickly paced by many people including myself. At the corner intersecting two streets were two side by side long lines that were hard to miss. My 'sorta like' mom, Lady L walked the long line for funnel cakes while I patiently took the longer line for roasted corn-on-a-cob. We smiled and waved at each other as we got closer to our respective windows. Corn-on-a-cob on a stick was first bathed in butter then liberally smothered with mayo then generously sprinkled with parmesan cheese and for a little bit of heat, finished with a quick dash of cayenne. We needed to sit down to thoroughly enjoy our newly acquired taste buds pleasers. But wait, at the next table, I see giant sno-cones in all sorts of flavors. I walked up and ordered a favorite flavor—mango. It was a difficult task to juggle a corn-on-a-cob on a stick with one hand and a sno-cone in another and not expect an accident. Well, I lost the top of my sno-cone to an avalanche and it hit the crook of my arm then slid right down to the sparkling rhinestones of my left shoe. I was more upset in losing the best part of my sno-cone than the sticky yellow syrup that landed on my new shoe.

I found Lady L sitting on a pile of bricks that made a flower bed and I joined her while 'sorta like' dad chatted with Bingo and his girlfriend named Mary something. We sat there and devoured every bit of what we had while we laughed at the scary thought of shrunken feet. Perhaps it's just a scary optical illusion when one gains weight and see that their feet seem to have shrunk.

Next, we checked out the array of fresh produce. We see the first 'Organic' sign at a table. The three of us looked at one another and smiled. JR, was with us then! Later on, a bunch of organic freshly rooted garlic, non-organic daikon radish, kettle corn and another container of Jambalaya are among the items that went in our free bags compliments of a local hospital.

Stuffed and fully content, we slowly made our way to the car. People stopped and chatted with my 'sorta like' parents while I mused myself watching people dance to a live country music. On the dance floor, a woman in her 2 sizes too small green t-shirt that exposed her bulging waist line when she raised her arms was dancing with another female whose bra size appear to be...well let's just say my minus A cup was no match for her triple D , and beyond. This is one of those times when I say "life is just not fair." I looked away but only to the site of a man who wore his funnel cake including whipped cream topping and strawberries when he completely missed his mouth trying to shovel in a much bigger piece than his mouth was capable of taking. My little mishap wasn't that bad compared to his ultimate food accident of the day! He won the medal and wore it too!

That night, I slept soundly like a little girl who appreciated the many blessings of simple pleasures in life!

There's a story behind the words 'sorta like' which I am going to blog about 'sorta like' soon!

Patty Cabanas , is the co-editor of Feasts of Phantoms and Sulfur Creek, and copy editor of several Fisher King Press publications, including The Sister from Below and Re-Imagining Mary. Her Out of the Shadows book cover design, has garnered rave reviews from a chorus of Jungian enthusiasts. Find out more about Fisher King Press at www.fisherkingpress.com and Genoa House at www.genoahouse.com.

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Thursday, May 6, 2010

Perogies Wanted

Who would have thought, at 12 midnight I'd be sitting here at my desk writing my first personal blog about Perogies? Yes, it's a craving but not what you're thinking. In Canada, Perogies are in every freezer of most Supermarket. And if you're fortunate enough to be in a community of larger Ukranian or Polish population, well what better way to have Perogies than freshly made, sauteed with bacon and onion then generously smothered with sour cream and topped with cheddar cheese? Oh, the site of sour cream and gooey cheese running down the side of a mountain of Perogies in a plate is almost sinful yet guilt-free when eaten in slow-motion and letting it roll around your mouth while identifying the various ingredients that's in every bite. In California, most people I have come across with have never heard of them. I've not seen them anywhere in California either, so it doesn't surprise me that not too many Californian know about Perogies, just like I don't know about the addictive Chin-Chin that Kehinde spoke of. Denninger's in Hamilton have the best Perogies I've ever had.

What brought this on? I was having a conversation with an ex-tractor salesman and I used the word "prerogative" and Bingo! One spoke and remembered the first experience he had with Perogies while visiting Canada. Needless to say, this California native is no longer a Perogy virgin. Hah! It's his fault that I have this craving and the feeling of nostalgia is so high that I will attempt to make my own perogies at the crack of dawn while he snores and play tug-o-war with a little spider hanging from the bedroom ceiling.

California is beautiful and has a lot to offer, plenty of sunshine, miles and miles of sandy beaches, hiking trails with snakes and mountain lions  and great Mexican Food, but not big on Canadian favorites such as Perogies, Poutine, coffee crisp and crispy crunch candy bars and Canadian Bacon, just to name a few.

Patty Cabanas , is the co-editor of Feasts of Phantoms and Sulfur Creek, and copy editor of several Fisher King Press publications, including The Sister from Below and Re-Imagining Mary. Her Out of the Shadows book cover design, have garnered rave reviews from a chorus of Jungian enthusiasts. Find out more about Fisher King Press at www.fisherkingpress.com and Genoa House at www.genoahouse.com.

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Sunday, May 2, 2010

The Motherline for Mother's Day

The Motherline: Every Woman's Journey to find her Female Roots
by Naomi Ruth Lowinsky.

Product Description
The Motherline takes the perspective of the mother who is always also a daughter. It is a book for women who have mothers, are mothers, or are considering becoming mothers, and for the men who love them. Telling the stories of women whose maturation has been experienced in the cycle of mothering, it urges a view of the psyche of women that does not sever mother from daughter, feminism from "the feminine," body from soul.

It argues that the path to wholeness requires us to reclaim aspects of the feminine self that we have lost or forgotten in our struggle to free ourselves from constricting roles. It describes a woman's journey to find her roots in the personal, cultural, and archetypal Motherline.

Our mothers are the first world we know, the source of our lives and our stories. Embodying the mysteries of origin, they tie us to the great web of kin and generation. Yet the voice of their experience is seldom heard. We have no cultural mirror in which to envision the fullness of female development; we are deprived of images of female wisdom and maturity. Finding our female roots, reclaiming our feminine souls, requires us to pay attention to our real mothers' lives and experience. Listening to our mothers' stories is the beginning of understanding our own.

“(In) this perceptive and penetrating study . . . (Naomi Ruth Lowinsky) imaginatively applies Jungian, feminist and literary approaches to popular attitudes about . . . mothers and daughters and movingly, to personal experience.”
—Publisher’s Weekly

“A combination of years of scholarship and recordings of personal journeys, this book belongs in every woman’s psychology/spirituality collection.”
—Library Journal

“In this accessible volume, Jungian psychologist Lowinsky explores the pain that women feel when their mother-love is undervalued or erased.”
—ALA Booklist

About the Author

Naomi Ruth Lowinsky is the author of The Sister from Below: When the Muse Gets Her Way and The Motherline: Every Woman's Journey to Find Her Female Roots and numerous prose essays, many of which have been published in Psychological Perspectives and The Jung Journal. She has had poetry published in many literary magazines and anthologies, among them After Shocks: The Poetry of Recovery, Weber Studies, Rattle, Atlanta Review, Tiferet and Asheville Poetry Review. Her two poetry collections, red clay is talking (2000) and crimes of the dreamer (2005) were published by Scarlet Tanager Books. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize three times and the recent recipient of the Obama Millennium Poetry awarded for "Madelyn Dunham, Passing On.” Naomi is a Jungian analyst in private practice, poetry and fiction editor of Psychological Perspectives, and a grandmother many times over.

Order The Motherline and the many Fisher King titles directly from

Fisher King Press




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