topiary © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
Here goes nothing:
1. I have an irrational fear of perishing from radiation poisoning/gamma rays, not that I act upon it in any manner, but I do have a hard time watching movies where that comes into play, like K-19: The Widowmaker totally horrified me.
2. I cannot read analog clocks. Well, I can eventually but it takes me a little while to...um... sound it out.
3. I am left-handed.
4. I was obsessed with birds and insects as a child... and kept a large number of insect pets, including praying & Chinese mantids, several varieties of katydids, Colorado Potato Beetles, a bunch of butterflies and moths including hummingbird moths (which are amazing), and June Beetles.
5. I am mostly Ukrainian. My last name was "americanized" from a name which in the original Cyrillic sounded like "Kit-see".
albinos © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
6. I had very blond hair as a child.
Alas my friends who blog are lazy, its late and it is unlikely that I will hunt down anyone to tag to carry on with the meme.
bromeliads © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
I have good news coming in a matter of days that is far too secret yet to share here. Patience! But I will be having photographs in the December issue of Food & Wine magazine and an interview in a major Chinese magazine. Details, soon.
In other news:
Last week, to continue with my ongoing documentation of Terrain, I returned for the Harvest and got my pumpkin on. Autumn is in full swing, going from 96˙ evil-humid days to 60˙ days with chilly breezes in the blink of an eye. I picked an especially gorgeous day, arriving at the crack of dawn and leaving only after the golden hour of evening. It was also really lovely to see the Terrain posse again who are always a pleasure to work with... or near.
harvest spray © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
lotus © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
Spectacular light, and not too shabby results.
An anonymous tip put me hot on the trail of an abandoned, burnt-out diner in inner the Philly burbs this week. Today Gwyn, Michael and I decided to take it on. Before we met up with Gwyn, Michael and I decided to case it and see if the entryway was still clear, look for eyes on us and parking. It was fairly out in the open but we decided to run with it... collected Gwyn and returned and slipped right in.
pumpkins and mushrooms © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
There had been an accidental kitchen fire several months ago, but despite this, everywhere but the site of the fire was in surprisingly good condition. Tables were still set with silverware, paper napkins that were slightly singed, and coffee cups sitting upside down on their saucers, booth seats barely covered with dust. We crept into the seating area, moving slowly behind the slightly-tinted glass. Gwyn followed me into the kitchen to look at the damage, while Michael wandered off around the counter.
orchilette © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
lace © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
As I backtracked towards the booths, Michael whispers "There's someone coming, there's a guy on a bike and he is coming this way, we gotta get outta here." We grabbed our stuff and made our way out the back door, Michael saying he couldn't see him clearly, but he had a blue shirt and might be a bike cop.
arterial © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
Peeking around the corner, we saw nothing and shuffled back to the car, while the bike guy continued to stay put, staring into the diner door, barely visible to us. I turned for a moment just in time to see him slip around the corner and ride off.
albinos © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
We decided to see if we could get a good look at him (like if he was actually a bike cop or not) and get moving in case he saw us and called the cops.
apricot © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
Failing to catch up with him, we returned and waited in the parking lot to see if anything would "happen" and try to decide whether or not we should make a second attempt.
And thereupon we bailed. Not one photograph was had, not a camera unsheathed from its bag. Amped up on jittery adrenaline I snappily decided we should go check out one of the Peru House neighbors, Riddle House. This particular approximately mile stretch of road in Delaware County may have no less than 10 abandoned and/or vacant houses, some locked, some visible from the road, some posted, some not. Gwyn led us down a woodsy drive to a stupendous, rather strangely organized Victorian-ish house. There was grand front porch that was mostly surrounded by railings, though at one end, there was a bank of windows... with curtains.
the wind through us © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
The drive that encircled the house had a roofed portion that extended from the front porch, presumably to protect you from the elements while you hopped in your carriage. Around back there was a structure on top of which there was watchtower-like room, large and octagonal with big windows all the way around.
ashes © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
The front door was hanging open, its padlock busted and while the first floor was boarded, moving through the front room quickly lead us to the main stairway which was so bright by comparison, it seemed almost artificially lit. It was painted with rather unusual patterns that could have been painted really anytime... deco-y and abstract in pale pinks, yellows and greens. It had obviously been sepearated into apartments at some point during the 70s (noting the harvest gold kitchen appliances). There were signs of small fires on the second and third floors, no graffiti to speak of, no solid signs of squatters.
tissue © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
The watchtower had become a rather impressive grave for two turkey vultures. Strangely, there was one huge window wide open (maybe broken out) but the one vulture had died with its wings spread out in the center of the room. The other folded and tucked in the corner. It would seem that one would cancel the other out, but there they died together, looking like they had died at almost the same time.
nevermind © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
The house was filled with all sorts of interesting slopes and curves, rippled old glass, and subtle colors. The evening light made it so magical, but the trek earlier in the day, made me jump at the none-to-distant woosh of traffic and the scuttle of squirrels and birds outside the open windows.
marshlands © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.
Having neglected to bring a flashlight we were cut off from the excitement that apparently is the other half of the house. Return is essential, with model, ideally. More photos to come, naturally.
The last few weeks of October are chock full of action to make up for the quickly approaching November deficit... of action and income. I'm starting to dread it more and I've been having some unexpected pain the past couple of days... hoping it just passes before I run into the Butcher for our ladder match. The hospital posse might have even forgotten about me by now. Next weekend by bosom friend Shanners becomes Mrs. McLaughlin and Michael and I are devoting our weekend to being her paparazzos. I have a few special visitors, models and a touch of trouble to get into... then hopefully, I will go vote, put Senator Obama into office, and then wizz off to the hospital.... A few drugs here, a few weeks of laying around there... and I will be good as new, we hope.
sprig © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.