life by the side of the road

I'm all squared away back in the 'studious little flat' in Edmonton. I JUST got home. Bags aren't even unpacked yet. Tea is made. Candles are lit. The Road Home with Bob Chelmick is streaming melodically into my cozy living room from my laptop...and here I am, unloading my camera and blogging. Devoted? Maybe. Sleepy? A bit. I figured I should get this post out of the way before I run a bath and pour a scotch, otherwise I'll be useless afterwards. Just a pile of relaxed and exhausted Stina falling into bed. Not conducive to writing...not one bit. So...my weekend started with a word slam in Red Deer, followed by a visit with some friends I haven't seen in far too long. Bed at 12:35am...and up at 5am to head to Banff. Ran a 10K road race at 10:30am, had a burger, beer and delicious truffle fries at a little place called Eddy's on Caribou Street and then drove 3ish hours to here:

Welcome to Chez Ron's (as he likes to call his abode)! A tidy little army house that got dragged from Calgary and placed on a new foundation in the heart of ranch land in southern Alberta. The window at the top of the side of the house is the window of the infamous 'presidential suite'. It's so saturated with glorious fall color and summer type weather there at the moment...that it's quite ridiculous.

These are the trembling aspen that line the one side of the road leading to Chez Ron's. These are the first two sketches in my new sketchbook and this particular sketch spans two pages. In the early morning and late afternoon the sunlight shines on the yellow leaves in such a way that they just radiate this fantastic, happy yellow...but when the high afternoon sun hit them, they just looked kind of muddied and blended in with the dry ocher of the tall prairie grass. This wall of aspens is a sight to see at the magic hours of daylight. Man I love fall!

I sketched this sitting in the grass by the side of the road. Actually, this entire trip I spent a fair amount of time by the side of the road. Writing. Stopping to take pictures. At one point...I had stopped so long to write a poem that a young RCMP officer had apparently passed by me twice and noticed my head down, so he pulled up to see if I was OK. I laughed and showed him I was writing and he looked relieved and went on his way. Normally it only takes me 4.5hrs to get from Ron's back to my place, but I took highway #22 all the way from his place to Cochrane so I didn't have to battle the Deerfoot in Calgary at 5pm. Between the lovely scenery on the way and stopping multiple times to take pictures and let Gershwin and myself stretch our legs...it took about 7 hours to get home today.

Oh well...it's just fodder for new works down the road. Time well dawdled with, really.