Portland, Maine: Maps, Folding and Eating Lobster

The Osher Map Library and Smith Center for Cartographic Education in Portland, Maine, has one of the largest collections of maps in the United States.  That’s what drew me to the city with the Boston Map Society.

We had a terrific visit to the Map Library where we admired the exhibits and treasures from the collection.

Afterwards, we headed to the King’s Pub for delicious beer and food.  A harbor cruise then a trolley ride to Portland Head Light House topped off the day.

Portland Head Lighthouse 5.23.2017

Portland Head Lighthouse 5.23.2017

 

I stayed overnight in a bed & breakfast inn not far from the Portland Museum of Art.  It was an ideal location.

The following day, I visited the museum and went on a special tour of Winslow Homer’s restored art studio and home on Prouts Neck in Scarborough, Maine.

Winslow Homer's Studio and Home, Maine 5.24.2017

Winslow Homer’s Studio and Home, Maine 5.24.2017

Rocky Coast in front of Homer's Studio, 5.24.2017

Rocky Coast in front of Homer’s Studio, Maine, 5.24.2017

I took the Amtrak train from Boston’s North Station to Portland.  A local bus from the Portland station took me to the downtown area.

Maine is a great place eat lobsters…especially if the lobster has been caught that day!

Origami Lobster 10.1.2017

Origami Lobster 10.1.2017

I was thinking about my weekend trip to Portland when I did this fold.

Can you believe it took me longer to fold this Origami Lobster than it did to shell then eat it?

How ambitious I was to think that I could fold this challenging design!

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Tanglewood's Shed 8.6.2017

Tanglewood: The Color of Music

At least once during the summer,  I select a Tanglewood concert to attend in Western Massachusetts.

The K&L Tours bus picks up guests from Park Street in downtown Boston.  After a pleasant three hour trip – with a rest stop on the way there – the bus arrives at Tanglewood, the music center and summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

Tanglewood's Shed 8.6.2017

Tanglewood’s Shed 8.6.2017

The price of your ticket includes a seat in the “Shed” to hear a concert and the round trip there and back.  If you travel on your own steam, you can purchase inexpensive lawn tickets and picnic before and during the concert.

The Tanglewood grounds are lovely with walking paths and grottoes, benches, views of the Berkshire Hills, exhibits in the Visitor’s Center and Manor House and, gorgeous stretches of lawn with pockets of flowers.

Berkshire Hills from Tanglewood 8.6.2017

Berkshire Hills from Tanglewood 8.6.2017

I attended a sold-out Tanglewood concert this past summer where Yo-Yo Ma was the star performer.  He is one of my favorite musicians.

When I listen to and watch Yo-Yo Ma play, an extraordinary thing happens:  I see colors emanating from his cello like streamers in the wind or colorful kite tails wafting over the audience.

Tanglewood Grounds 8.6.2017

Tanglewood Grounds 8.6.2017

This mostly happens when I attend live performances with certain musicians.  It is as if the musicians are coaxing their instruments to sing rather than the musician actually playing them.

 

Origami Cello 9.24.2017

Origami Cello 9.24.2017

When I was a child, I experienced this music-color phenomena far more frequently than I do now as an adult.

I thought everyone saw colors when listening to music and was surprised to find out it was not the case.

Perhaps, I imagined, those musicians who produced these colors had tapped into an extraordinary dimension where they effortlessly and magically animated their instruments which then played and created the streams of colors.

I could not find a Cello design to fold this morning so opted to modify a Dollar-Bill Origami Guitar model to make it look like a Cello.

Wish there were more Origami musical instrument models to fold.

 

Provincetown Beach Kayaks. 9.1.2017.

Day tripping to Provincetown, Massachusetts

“Four foot waves and rough seas.”  That’s what I read on a sign at the Provincetown Fast Ferry ticket booth in Boston’s Seaport District.

The warning did not deter me as I grabbed my ticket and raced to the boat in the rain.

The 90-minute ferry ride on turbulent seas left many fellow passengers looking ashen.  Some fled to the head with upset stomachs.

Pilgrim Monument 9.1.2017

Pilgrim Monument 9.1.2017

Our captain advised us to remain seated due to the extreme up and down motion of the boat.  As a safety precaution, no one was permitted on the deck.

Usually, it is a delightful ferry ride from Boston to the tip of Cape Cod.  This trip, I  felt quite unsettled until we arrived at our destination.  Thank goodness, the rain stopped and sun eventually came out.

P-town, as Provincetown is referred to by tourists, is a gorgeous locale full of art galleries, shops, great restaurants, bike trails, and beautiful beaches.

There is so much to see including a public library with a large boat on the second floor, the granite Pilgrim Monument standing some 252 feet tall, the historical Provincetown Museum and the Provincetown Art Museum.

Suzanne's Garden 9.1.2017

Suzanne’s Garden 9.1.2017

Suzanne’s Garden – a small public garden on the quieter Historic East side of Provincetown on Commercial Street – was the perfect place to sit and eat my packed lunch.  Butterflies circled me and wild flowers were still blooming.

Beach Kayaks 9.1.2017

Beach Kayaks 9.1.2017

It was too cold to swim, so I viewed the latest exhibits at the Provincetown Art Museum and walked along the picturesque, narrow streets admiring the manicured Cape Cod homes and gardens.

Pagoda 9.23.2017

Pagoda 9.23.2017

Then, I buried my feet in the warm sand and walked back along the beach to the dock.

Indeed, a lovely day trip and a smoother ferry ride back to Boston.

The only Origami design I thought of folding for this blog entry was a Pagoda.

I suppose the shape of the Pilgrim Monument influenced the modular model selection.

The diagram is found on a website and requires multiple folded squares.

Each square is folded then slid one on top of the other to form the Pagoda.

Summer Balance and Yin-Yang

Summer has gone.  Can’t believe it.  Attending the New York OrigamiUSA Conference was in the plans for my vacation but it was not to be.

I ended up with a staycation — you know…vacation at home ordering one’s life and resting along with a few day trips.

Yin-yang symbol 9.20.2017

Yin-Yang  9.20.2017

Suppose it wasn’t that bad as it indeed restored some balance in my life.

This morning, on the commuter train, I folded the Yin-Yang symbol – clearly NOT one of my best attempts – from a sheet of black and white paper.

The instructions for this 18-step design were featured in OrigamiUSA’s “The Paper” (Summer 2017), pp.12-13. The design and diagrams are by Daniela Carboni.

 

The Suckiest Airplane

The passenger next to me uttered an expletive.  I nodded in agreement.

The Delta plane was on the Boston Logan tarmac for an hour and a half.  We both had missed our connecting flight in Detroit.

Delta Planes 7.19.2017

Delta Planes 7.19.2017

No water, the pilot said.  Then, a yellow light appeared which he could not turn off.

This was followed by a generator issue, then a second generator problem.

Finally, we were in the air and a short time later, I was walking into Delta’s Detroit airport toward the Help counter.

“Your next connecting flight is in four hours,” the chippy Delta agent told me with no apology.  I was pissed.

OK, I thought.  I’ve never actually seen all of the airport’s concourses in leisure.  So, let me walk through them and check out the sites and shops.

Water fountain Concourse A 7.19.2017

Water fountain Concourse A 7.19.2017

I must have walked a couple of miles up and down the concourses as an airport-sightseeing-tourist.  Two items of note:

Concourse A: Pretty cool water fountain.

Concourse A to B and C: Tunnel with multi-colored flashing lights in sync with music.

Walking through the tunnel, I swiveled my hips a bit and twisted the rolling carry-on as my partner to the Motown song.   That was fun!

Detroit Airport Connecting Tunnel 7.19.2017

Detroit Airport Connecting Tunnel 7.19.2017

After three hours of walking all the concourses, I returned to my departure gate exhausted.

A colleague joined me with a half hour to go until we boarded the same plane.

Origami Airplane 7.21.2017

Origami Airplane 7.21.2017

The connecting flight was uneventful but my return flights were unpleasant.

Screaming babies and continuous kicking of my seat by toddlers plagued me all the way back to Boston.

Mercifully, both flights were on time.

Once home, I unpacked and folded an Origami airplane.

 

Peace Dove in Turbulent Times

Sudden death of a friend, major organization changes with departures at work and, upsetting family events all happened last week.

Peace Dove 7.16.2017

Peace Dove 7.16.2017

It shook me to the core. These are turbulent times.

Folding an Origami model was the last thing I felt like doing.

When I saw this fairly simple Peace Dove, I had to try it.

My dove looks sad rather than uplifting.  I don’t know why.

These days, I don’t even listen to national or world news because the stories can be so upsetting.

So what is one to do?

More or Less a Giraffe

This was a challenging Origami Giraffe design for many reasons.

Origami Giraffe 7.9.2017

Origami Giraffe 7.9.2017

The YouTube instruction video was not clear on how to fold the animal’s neck and ears.

And, there were many folds to shape these areas.

Thus, I decided to improvise and just turned the paper inward to form  the giraffe’s body.

I also felt rushed with folding this evening and lacked concentration.

The paper pattern with large brown splotches was not quite right for a giraffe but it was all I had.

Maybe I’ll try this design again when I have more time.