Search This Blog

Thursday, November 28, 2013

For the table

While every day should be a day of thanksgiving (why do we only celebrate virtues on certain days instead of doing them every day?), I am expressing my gratitude to my friends and family across the globe. But as much, if not more, I would like that gratitude to extend to the countless others whom I’ve passed by in my travels and wherever I am at the moment.

Not just to the unseen, unmet individuals who ensure that trains run on time or who prepare the goods that go to market to sustain our daily lives; but to the individuals I see on those trains whom I will never know and to whom I can only venture an abstract compassion or to the poor in the sidewalk to whom I occasionally speak, but honestly, if I am honest, do I give many thoughts to? Do I invite into my home?

And why be grateful to those whom we ignore? Because we receive the first critical lesson from them; the limits of our compassion and the vast expanse of our ignorance and inaction. Reflecting on the day at day’s end, faces come into focus, glimpses of the unguarded gaze or the discussion I had with a guy in the T who said no my offer of food because he has a dodgy stomach. I didn’t catch his name; these images rest dreamlike in my memory. Nor should we stop here.

But let’s consider offering gratitude to those who have wronged us, who have pushed our buttons, who perhaps have even been apparent causes of life-changing trauma. Why be grateful to them? This is the second lesson and perhaps the hardest. Because at a bare minimum, from them we learn to listen deeply, we learn patience. At the greatest, most expansive and most intimate frontier, we may learn true forgiveness.

None of this is mere sentiment. Sentiment is cheap, Hallmark cards instead of deeply felt knowing and expression. This is a wish in the deepest, most heartfelt, body and soul sense. I am wishing to express gratitude to all beings, seen and unseen, to those close and those distant, and even to the causes and conditions that have brought these relations about. You who are near and dear to me; we have come to be, each and everyone of us through various sequences and patterns of love and being. You whom I don’t know too well or don’t know at all; I celebrate the ever-present potential that we may someday come to meet and if not, then simply the fact that you are. And to you whom for whom the relationship may be brittle, sad, or antagonistic; let us celebrate our mutual ignorance of our true natures.

With practice, I think we can fulfill and build on the innate goodness that informs who we truly are. How often does our “I hate that guy” reflect more on us than on them? I’d say almost always. If someone hits us intentionally or worse, attempts to disturb us in harsher ways, we can justify our anger; but holding onto it till it becomes hatred or worse is self-destructive, destructive of a self that we have created and that we know is a shifting phantom poorly reflecting the deepest, truest aspects of what it means to be human.

All the causes and conditions that have come together to provide for us this magical display of phenomenal existence with its wonders, awes, boredom and adventitious moments: I express gratitude for them. The impermanent swirl of events that comprises this individual being all the way to the farthest reaches of whatever cosmos it is we inhabit is a dance of what is, ultimately, love. In consuming plant (and beast, if you’re a carnivore, as well), let us be mindful of the brilliance of the transaction. From sun, soil, water and wind to crop to market to plate; from birth to growth to (apologies to the squeamish) slaughter to dismemberment to packaging to plate; all these have their precedent moments as do we, from our inceptions to our infancies, to our various stages of life, our tragedies, our triumphs.

We meet at a sacramental table. We meet for a puja, for a tsok, for a feast to celebrate these interconnections, these interactions. We meet each other, we meet ourselves.

Postscript: when it’s over and time to clear the table, we take care. We reflect on the feast, the joy, the sacrament. We carry this with us, hopefully, in the next moment and the next. A day of thanksgiving.

“If only there were stillness, full, complete.

If all the random and approximatewere muted, with neighbors’ laughter, for your sake,and if the clamor that my senses makedid not confound the vigil I would keep –

Then in a thousandfold thought I could think you out,

even to your utmost brink,and (while a smile endures)

possess you, giving you away, as though I were but giving thanks,to all the living.”

Rainer Maria Rilke, Poems from the Book of Hours (Babette Deutsch translation)


Saturday, July 13, 2013

Work in progress 03

These drawings get us closer to what I want to work with. The great spheres of geodesics are one point of departure, but there's also my really wanting to deal with spatial ambiguity. Plus, I've always been attracted to spirals. I'm not sure how this is going to resolve and I haven't even broached the inclusion of any naturalistic elements. More on those in the next couple of days.

Both of these started with a nautilus. I like the hidden aspect of the concentric circles in the drawing on the left, but the more pronounced spiral in the other opened me to the possibility of using it like a skeleton on which I could lay various vectors (which you can't see too well here, I don't think) and other, overlapping circles that eventually arc in opposite directions and result in those petal-like designs. This wasn't foreseen and the math is simple (they're a logical result of the iterating the movement of the arcs from starting in the center of the spiral.)
And then there's this one. Here the approach is to find a vanishing point, draw some circles around it and describe radii as overlapping arcs. When an arc is drawn through points, we have vertices of triangles that seem to lie on a torus. It's been hypothesized that one model of the universe would be a donut or a torus. This seems to be giving way to membranes and multiverses that attach to one another but don't interpenetrate (or do they?); in any event, all this stuff is providing fodder for not just this piece I want to do for my sister, but very possibly for a series of other similarly related works.


Saturday, July 6, 2013

Work in progress 02

Keep the following images in mind. They may not seem to have much with geodesics or Fuller's synergetics, but remember what I said about recognizing patterns in nature and it would be worthwhile to revisit Bucky's words.

In the meantime, the two drawings are of the same subject, but different media, different context. We could assume that we are using the same initial shape, though, and that we are applying different powers of geometric progression. I'll (hopefully) make that more clear in the following section.

There's an app for that:
There's an app that uses a basic three dimensional shape and from what I can see, multiplies the shape against itself. For instance, below is a tetrahedron where n = 1.
A tetrahedron has four faces. What becomes apparent is that we have a tetrahedron as the base form, and we have an object here with twelve faces. But let's look at vertices. A tetrahedron has 9 (3 for each face). Our new figure has 36 vertices. Bear in mind that the square root of 36 is 6 and the square root of 9 is 3.
In a Fullerian context, somewhat Pythagorean in some ways, what we want to bear in mind is that Fuller was working from and working with powers of 3. But what was most telling is that he was insistent on vectors and vectors are movements/motions of force in a specific direction. To be concise, a little bit somewhat, the n values here are something like 1:4 as an exponential base.
Here we have n = 10.

My point in bringing this up is that we limit ourselves context by context. We tend to not recognize that what we call objects are events based on relations between other events and processes that come together and appear to us as phenomena.

What we discover as we burrow down further and further into phenomena is "less" and " less"; matter is irreducible because ultimately non-existent. Now. Work with that. More to follow.


A work in progress 01

I love my sister. That's easy. She's fun, witty, genius smarts, and a heart the size of Dallas, no, Houston, filled with wisdom and compassion. But right now, what I'm appreciating about her is that she gave me an idea, the most precious gift a human being can give another.

She was looking at paintings to put on a wall and she sent me pictures of two of them. Both were the kind corporate-favored abstraction that doesn't threaten perception or inform the viewer. And both were exorbitantly priced. Well, nuts, sez I. I can do better than both those and for loads cheaper (family discounts always apply). But mostly, looking at those pieces reminded me that nothing is abstract.

Principles aren't abstractions, for example. They tend to be deduced from patterns of behavior seen in systems at any scale or in any context where those principles obtain. I think of something Bucky Fuller wrote in part one of his masterpiece "Synergetics": "The physical Universe is a self-regenerative process. It's regenerative interrelationships and intertransformings are generated by a complex code of weightless, generalized principles. The principles are metaphysical." (Synergetics, 220.05)

A lot of what I love to do in art is join the figurative with the abstract (okay, okay...I'll defer to art history here); it could be in the handling of the material that is loose but results in a figurative whole or I've been known to render "realistically" something that doesn't exist or just play with color and line until something strikes my fancy and seems to work.

But I've reached a point in my life where I sense a kind of unifying principle behind all appearances. I realize that we live in an oftentimes binary world of dualities, most of them psychological. They way things appear aren't how things are. Indeed to even speak of things is mistaken. Again, Bucky: "There are no solids or particles -- no- things." (Ibid., 240.08)

So in throwing it out there that I'd be happy to work on a piece for my sister's wall and even sounding like an interior decorator when I asked about the color scheme, I set to work. Thinking. And meditating. Not on any one thing, just being aware and open. But I want to track the development of this piece as an inquiry into the general principle of a how a work, any work, comes to pass.

It's not by accident that I'm referring to Buckminster Fuller. He's been a huge influence on those of us of certain years and backgrounds. He was far ahead of most with his observations and maybe a little off on some, and wonderfully eccentric as an exemplar and a thinker. "Dare to be naive", he wrote. Sorry, not sure the source.

What Fuller opened up to me was grasping at the synergetic operations of the world I encounter. Not in the popular sense that the word is used in corporate boardrooms (my God, business lingo has to turned and twisted language in ways no one could fathom who thinks even a little rationally), but in its original sense from chemistry: the outcome the whole unpredicted by the action(s) of the parts. Business leader really want to use simpler terms like cooperation, but apparently prefer to sound dumber using words culled from the sciences.

Back to Bucky, though. I wondered how/if it would be possible to play with his geodesics, his tensegrities, and great circles in the context of a painting for my sister. I'm going to find out. And so will anyone else who wants to come along on the journey.

I'm keeping a small sketchbook with me, reading chunks of Fuller's works on my iPad and Chromebook and doing a study here and there in watercolor (limit is going to be six, for a reason that will be explained later.) I'm going to be lazy and order the canvas pre-stretched once I have a handful of compositions for sis to critique and choose from. In the meantime, lets begin:

The little flower is just a toss-off, but if you look closely at nature, you'll see patterns in all forms.




Saturday, May 18, 2013

Why Tibet matters

This. My friend Ta Bo is one of many thousands of Tibetans who have fled their homeland in search of, well, frankly, a better place to be. I've said this before and I'll say this again; as glad I am to have met my Tibetan friends, I really wish the conditions that provided the basis for our meeting had been something other than invasion and occupation.

Frankly, this breaks my heart.


Wednesday, May 8, 2013


Picasso Black and White at the MFA Houston is one of the finest exhibits I've ever seen. Engaging with his work is learning how to see again and again. It's difficult to describe what effect of opening-up or unfolding his work has on me and how refreshing the various planes and overlapping images are in reinventing, re-presenting not just the plastic space of the painting itself, but the space we ourselves inhabit.

Writing about the poet Han Shan, Gary Snyder said his works were a drink of fresh water for the weary traveler. For me, I would say this about Picasso.

Additionally, the black and white/monochrome works echo the recording of the onslaught of the disasters of worldwide depression and the rise of fascism that lead to the Second World War. I think Picasso said that painting should be an instrument of war and indeed, his studies for "Guernica" and his later works throughout the forties are codes to the horrible tragedy that engulfed the world.

I detest sometimes being confronted by works like "Postscript to Guernica, Dead Child II" because the sheer force of the work and what is refers to is altogether too fresh, too strong. We forget previous eras' horrors only to reinvent them again in the present.

I've heard people be perplexed by these works, how violent and ugly they are, but how could they not be when ugliness and violence was outside his door in Paris during the occupation? How else come to terms with the distortion of the human spirit?

Max Ernst once said that Dada was a bomb that was meant to explode, it was a reaction by poets, artists, musicians and performers to the brutal dissolution of the European continent during and in the wake of the First World War. Picasso's works during this time could best be described as melancholic, perhaps. But even so, there was a lyricism and playfulness in many of his works, particularly in his portraits and just the way he worked with the human body. I wonder if, in his fifties and sixties as war once again reared its head like a mad, drunken Minotaur bellowing for rape and destruction, he was driven by a more horrific zeitgeist? He must have, as Gurdjieff would put it, realized the "terror of the situation."

I'm sitting across from "The Charnel House", a painting I've seen many times at MOMA, but here it's a little more removed in a smaller, more intimate space and I find myself on the verge of tears. By 1944, I'm assuming news of the camps had gotten out and been confirmed. We see an unfinished work or maybe it's only apparently unfinished; the insanity of what came out of Dachau, Aushwitz, Buchenwald couldn't be contained or addressed rationally in any one work. Perhaps, not even in a whole life's body of work.

The vacant stare of the man's face in the lower right of the composition rests in eloquent counterpoint to the closed eyes of the woman and the child dead and bound. There are no flames, no smoke issuing from stacks in any obvious manner or rendering, rather the space is a jaggedly organized interior, evoking perhaps the disorientation of the victims' last moments and simultaneously, the disorientation and madness of a world where such atrocity could occur.

I purposely visited his response to Velasquez "Las Meninas" first, because I knew what was coming. It's a testament to his resilience that he was able to flourish and find a renewed vocabulary after the debacle that not just Europe but the entire world was emerging from.

You can't sugarcoat too much about the man. He could be gregarious, funny and childlike. He was a great charmer, a seducer of the highest order, but despite what Jonathan Richman wrote, he could be an asshole and something tells me that at least one ex-lover, ex-wife, ex-friend must have called him that. But art doesn't come from that side of us. Despite what people would like to think, it does not come from the ego, from the ersatz personality. Art is the up-springing of what is most essential about us and within us. It cannot arise from a sense that "I" am doing anything. There are those with degrees of exceptional technical facility, who can be quite clever, but ultimately, have little to say and whose works like their lives, ring hollow.

Then there are those whose being is, whether they like it or not, a vessel for the moments when the muse descends. If they have the fortitude, the strength (sometimes physical as much as aesthetic) and the ability to keep themselves open to the creative spirit, they may be a Michaelangelo, a Picasso. They may or may not be proud and vainglorious; they may be quite humble. It doesn't matter. The works they leave in their passing are what count.

I'm closing this entry here, but plan on returning for a second pass. This encounter with the Spaniard has been most rich and I'm grateful to have spent some quality time with the old guy, the father to us all.


Friday, April 19, 2013


There is a deep sadness in my heart in learning that the young men who perpetrated Monday's bombing are from Chechnya. I've usually sympathized with the Chechen struggle but am perplexed at why they would take it to the U.S. That I know of, this is one of the few areas where we haven't had much if any, involvement.

Of course, I'm presuming these two brothers wanted to make a statement. It could be that they were simply criminal thugs out to cause damage from their own hellbound psyches. That said, this evokes profound pity in my heart.

We're in our houses under police orders. The sirens continue outside and I'll check Facebook periodically, but I think I'll make today a day of retreat, meditation and reflection. I feel that all will be well, in the end, but in the meantime, I hope that people are consoling one another and not fanning the fires of fear or anger. "Hatred begets hatred and is not overcome by more hatred; but only by love." This is a rough paraphrase from the first chapter of the Dhammapada. It's something to keep in mind; a good way to train one's thoughts.

Between the helicopters passing over,
The sirens continuing to cry,
I hear birds chirping and singing.

In nature, birdsong is a cry of alarm or hunger. We hear it as music, as happiness.
In our world, a glass of water is just a glass of water; we take a shower and it's merely water and soap cleaning the body.
In the higher realms, a glass of water is anointment and offering; a shower is purification of mind and karma.

The rain of wisdom and compassion falls on all of us. May all beings have happiness. May all beings be free of suffering.

For those of you overseas or in other parts of the country, you can get a better picture of what we have going on here from NPR:

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


After yesterday's events, what sticks with me was the selfless response of strangers as well as first responders. This puts a lie to the idea that we are all driven by anger, hatred and self-interest and therefore is the most appropriate answer to the person or persons who perpetrated this awful deed.


I believe it's in "The Dhammapada" that Gotama the Buddha states that hatred isn't overcome by more hatred but by love. In Vipassana meditation, it's characteristic to end the sitting with a few minutes of metta bhavana meditation, wishing all beings to be happy, equanimous and free from suffering. It is also the point of the four immeasurables in Mahayana Buddhism that all beings have happiness, are free from suffering, imbued with joy that has no limits and abide in equanimity.


This is where the basis of my thinking lies today; in the innate goodwill and compassion that I've seen expressed, the truest manifestation of what humanity is.


Lastly, Robert Fripp has what I consider one of the finest articulations of how to navigate through events like yesterday's:


"In strange and uncertain times - such as those we are living in - sometimes a reasonable person might despair. But hope is unreasonable and love is greater even than this."



Monday, March 11, 2013

March 10 Tibetan Uprising Day Memorial rally: photos

Sadly, I wasn't able to update this blog with pics yesterday as I'd hoped. That said, here is the turn-out for yesterday's March 10 Tibetan Uprising Day Memorial rally. I don't think captions are necessary. The pictures should speak for themselves. You'll see photos of some of the 107 who have set themselves on fire in protest in their own land, while it is only outside of their occupied country that they can express themselves freely and speak publicly for those who cannot.

On a personal note, it was great to reconnect with old friends, though meeting at these assemblies is bittersweet owing to the genesis of the gatherings.

One last note of explanation. The young man in the last photo is Dhondup Phunkang, an indefatigable activist, organizer and eloquent spokesman for the Tibetan cause. The man is an inspiration and an example of what activists for any cause can and should be.


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Tibetan Uprising Day, 2013

While this is one of the saddest days in world history and where for Tibetans, it is the saddest, I'm ecstatic to see Woeser get this recognition.


This also brightens the day a bit:


And if YOU want to stand in solidarity with your Tibetan brothers and sisters, there's something going on in just about every part of the world:


If you want a quick overview of what today means, Sikyong Lobsang Sangay's statement sums it up well. I may disagree with him on several issues, but this is well said:


And for a look at historical context and how the 13th Dalai Lama underscored Tibet's independence, Jamyang Norbu's article fits the bill:


Last, I'm hoping Joshua Eaton's initiative can assist in bringing and keeping the issue of how the fight for independence is tied in with the extreme despair of self-immolation. It astonishes me that with all the rhetoric of whether self-immolation is or isn't supported in Buddhism or does HH the Dalai Lama support it and all the rest of such idiotic ramblings, practically no one has simply come out and said, "these people are in great enough pain, great enough despair to do this." Some of the images are tough, but until the rest of the world sees something, all the rhetoric in the world won't take.


To my friends in india I wish I was there, but we do what we can where we are. I'm heading down to the Boston Common. Hope to see some of you there!











Sunday, February 24, 2013

Another New York trip

I'm a bad retreatant. I just bailed on a one-day retreat to head for New York this morning. The rationalizations are incoming lousy weather and really wanting to study more Hindi. Plus, there's a Piero Della Francesca exhibit at the Frick that I don't want to miss. Tomorrow is the all-day panel at Tibet House and I have this feeling that had I attended the retreat, I would have talked myself out of this. Thus, the trip.

But wait, there's more! My colleague at HMS Kaitlyn Woelfel, had mentioned that a friend of hers took Limoliner down to the city recently. As you can see from the photos, it's pretty slick. Plush leather seats, radio, TV, wi-fi, food service(!), and all for only 89 dollars.

Plush. Leather.
Look! It's a galley!
...and we're off!
Food service. Okay, it's not four star, but it's something and I give these guys credit for providing these amenities in the first place.
This is from the walkway otherwise known as Fifth and a Half. It's not a full avenue that runs the length of the city but it's a cool modernist space. What strikes me about this is that this looks like a collage almost.
Here you have a better sense of its plaza-like space.

Upon parking and de-bussing, I headed for the Frick Collection to pay homage to Piero Della Francesca and a multitude of others. The following photos are terrible and I apologize in advance, but there are so many treasures in the Frick to relish. One thing I came away with was wanting to delve more into Gainsborough's attitudes toward his subjects. He seemed to have a photographer's eyes for capturing the gaze of the sitter relatively honestly and unguardedly. This speaks to a couple of things.

One, I would like to think his sitters were comfortable enough with him to let their guard down. Two, from what I recall, he didn't really like having to do portraits and I wonder if this honed a discipline such that he could see past the surface and glean a bit more of the person beneath the wig, the powder and the rouge. His obvious love was landscape, but I'm developing a greater appreciation for his portraiture which I frankly have never cared for very much. His portraits of Lady Innes and Frances Duncombe come to mind.

There are so many other joys to be had at the Frick. Two Vermeers, Rembrandt's Polish Rider (not to mention one of his great self-portraits!), a couple of eye-popping Veroneses, El Greco's "Saint Jerome", Bellini's "Saint Francis in the Desert" and others.

Interior of the Frick looking into the gallery for the Piero Della Francesca exhibit.
Another interior. A serene, wonderful sit.
It's criminal to do this. Rembrandt's "The Polish Rider" is a great work and here through my phone camera, it takes on, um, an impressionist reading.
Sadly, so does the great Piero.


After a few peregrinations, I headed to my hotel. Here, another story altogether awaits.

I Spent the Night in a Fleabag!

I opened my handy app and found a hotel for $99 (marked down from $199). In the theater district. The New York Inn on 8th which I thought I had stayed at before, but noooo, I had this confused with the New Yorker.

The New York Inn is a remnant of the days before the area was Disneyfied. On the front door was a letter to evacuate the premises from 2010 due to unsafe conditions. The lobby was, well let's just say I've seen worse. The guy at the desk was really nice and I figured that if the place was really uninhabitable, I'd leave; but frankly, I was incredibly tired and hungry and all things considered, I decided that it would be just easier to suck it up as opposed to trying to hunt around for another place.

Aaah, yes. The comforts of, well...they're trying.
C'mon! It keeps the shower curtain up!
Admittedly, the baseboard heating might be a bit suspect...
...but obviously,management is aware of this and has taken steps to ensure your comfort....this so reminded me of India! The tiny space heater to warm up a space it couldn't possibly warm up.
All things considered, it was what it was. I haven't paid for the priv of a flophouse in a goodly while and the price has surely gone up.
The panel discussion
The following are my notes from this morning. I thought about picking Professor Sperling's brains on a couple of things and saying hi to Jamyang-la, but as will become clear, I came across some info that necessitated my return.
Remember, these are notes. These are truncated, grammatically stunted NOTES.
Elliot Sperling on Ching/Manchu-Tibetan relationship:
Middle Way approach became dogma. Introduced a modus vivendi that spawned a lot of self-promotion. The Strasbourg Proposal was hugely mistaken. Independence/Rangzen support resulted in isolation of a lot of people.
Ching dynasty is extremely important to understanding the assimilation of Tibet into Ching empire. The Ching were sent in to end the Gurkha War against Tibet. Tibet was no longer independent during the Ching. Imperial subjugation.
Untenable to say that Tibet was assimilated during the Mongol dynasty. Both Tibet and China were subject to the Mongols.
"Historical China must be understood as the Ching dynasty at its height." Who said this?
Dynasties rewritten by the successors. Tibet is not written into the histories of Chinese dynastic succession.
Legislation/regulation does exist in Ching dynastic literature. Golden Urn selection used to refine the selection of incarnate lamas. Golden Urn downplayed by many, a hugely cynical ploy by the current CCP used to ignore and arrest HHDL's Panchen Lama candidate.
Orgyen Thinley not recognized with the Golden Urn ritual.
Tibetans accepted the ceremony because the first Ching emperor was regarded as an emanation of Majughosa. 8th Panchen Lama selected with the Golden Urn ceremony. See also online text at University of Indiana.
End of Ching resulted in loss of authority. Tibet written about in colonial terms by Ching officials. Particularly, the model of US nation building. Tibet was never made a province. See also first line of Tibetan-Mongolian declaration of emergence from the Manchu.
Tibeto-Mongol Treaty. Check out Lung-ta online or in print! Get a copy! Photographs of the Tibetan text and the Mongolian text.
Jamyang Norbu
The Great Thirteenth's social and political reforms
Considers himself a freedom fighter, not a scholar. "I barely made it out of high school!" Found out for himself what was true, what was real. Not enough to just support, but to have knowledge and understanding.
The history doesn't need to be "dry as dust."
What was behind the declaration?
Revolutionary foment was all across Asia (Meiji, resistance to the Raj, etc.) 13th in Darjeeling got a lot of information and inspiration. Bengal intellectual capital. Think Tagore.
Get that picture of Bell and the 13th, make sure there's a complete caption.
13th's interpreter/lotsawa served under the Ching amban. Developed a dictionary of modern Tibetan.
Legal reforms. Who was the young minister who decided this? The legal system under the Ching wasn't Buddhist and needed to be reformed. Requested English law books. 1896 abolished capital punishment. First act by HHDL eradicating capital punishment. See also, Bell, et al.
Nepal requested reinstatement of capital punishment because the Tibetan bandits were emboldened.
People were still put to death owing to lack of oversight, etc.
Wanted to democratize the Tibetan parliament. Inspired by visiting Delhi and seeing the proceedings. First, educating the Tibetan people; began with elementary schools in the different regions.
Overburdened with taxation.
Started the first Tibetan police force.
The police were seen as taking power away from the monasteries. The police went from being well-funded and respected to backward and thuggish.
Postal system! Bod gzhung/ yig the'u...lnga (look for stamp online) check out the different post marks
Telegraph system also began under the 13th.
Also set up a national health service; medicines prepared centrally in Lhasa based on records of each child (off the astrological readings.)
While the panel discussions were great, I was a little taken aback to find the buses I wanted to return to Boston on all booked up. I'm sure that, had I elected to just show up, I probably could have gotten a seat but frankly, I didn't want to take a chance. To that end, I decided to bag the afternoon session and head out on Amtrak. On the Acela. First class. It's more expensive, but it's so much more convenient. I have a seat to myself and can do some studying, writing, blogging, etc., and I'll be in early enough to work-out, hit the hay early and be pretty fresh in the a.m.
Following are some random shots along the way.