Liralen Li (liralen) wrote,
Liralen Li

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Getting Back Into the Cold

I've been gradually recovering, mostly just taking it easy around the house and catching up with some computer things, but avoiding some of the overuse problems I was having for the last few months. Having a whole week off was nice enough that I'm finding more time to do other things each day, and it's really fun to be able to just play with Jet when he comes home and do stuff with him.

But it was a bit of a shock to the system coming from 80° weather to a sunny day here, and then suddenly snow on Tuesday morning. It is still in all the shadowed areas around here today, though the sunny bits are warmed up enough to have melted it all off. But it was 12° when I got up this morning, early enough to go with John and Jet to get Isabel and George off on the bus for the airport and 17 by the time we got to Jet's bus.

I started the day with oatmeal in a pot. That was tasty, especially with one of the little cups of half and half I'd gotten from an IHOP when we were there for breakfast, okay, and the dried Rainier Cherries and a bit of brown sugar to boot. Then I sat down and started a second pair of Knitty's Fetching fingerless gloves. I managed to finish them by the end of the day and then started in on the Ice Queen cowl using my princess yarn and those purple beads with pink hearts. John and I did all the laundry for the last week and a half, and I watched some Mythbusters with both John and Jet during the day and rode my forty minutes to the last two episodes of Mushi-shi

Carl was kind enough to lend me the series for me to see, and I was gifted it by my sister this past Christmas, because I had it on my Amazon Wish List. I loved it enough to really want it as a high priority item and would probably have bought the full collection if I hadn't been given it.

It's about Ginko, a Mushi-shi, a type of person who can see "mushi" which are energy/life forms that are connected with the life forces of the world but are entirely different from them. They often feed off the life force of animals, plants, and people to their detriment, and his main job is to go around and figure out an equitable solution when mushi and people come in conflict. Each of the stories is about this intertwining of power and reality, of gifts given that also take, of various types and levels of sacrifice. There's everything from mushi that can rebirth the dead, a living swamp, one that would destroy all life, one that can return the sight of the blind, or take all sight and ones eyes away. They're all haunting tales and each is rendered in loving detail.

The animation is smooth and subtle, able to convey emotions in the tiniest of movements or body language.

The backgrounds make my inner painter long for it to just stop for a moment, so I can capture *that* moment... that instant, that shadow of mist on the mountain, the gaunt skeleton of a dead tree, the wind whispering through the bamboo... each place Ginko visits is different, and it made the production crew scramble like made. The post-production "shot of everyone that worked on the series" had nearly everyone saying that it was the best thing they'd ever done, that the quality was what drove them, but that it was more work than they'd ever done before for a single series.

I loved that the woman who did all the backgrounds said that she'd gotten the backgrounds out of the manga, and that she hopes that people will notice that. Carl lent me the manga as well, and I'm using them for painting reference materials, as, obviously, the black and white can't capture the colors used in the anime, but the shapes, the shading, and the shadows... *grins in anticipation*

The last few episodes very much leave it open for a sequel, and it was fun to watch the reactions of the production crew when they were asked if they wanted to do a sequel. *laughs*

It's a very quiet series compared to many of the action things I watch, but it was all the more refreshing for that. It's all about relationship of human with human and human with other, and how many and varied those can be. Ginko isn't all-powerful, in the least, but he does what he can with what he has and with what the people around him will allow.

I loved it. Deeply and dearly and in a completely different way than Samurai Champloo; but with an equal intensity.

When Jet came home, we made lemon bars together for a bit, and he watched Mythbusters while I put together a jambalaya with a $1.25 mix from the Winn-Dixie near the place we stayed. I added some stuff. *laughs* I actually chopped a whole onion, half a green pepper, and then chopped up three raw andoulle sausages from the Sunflower Market, which the butcher said were spicier than the other one they had. And I let that brown with the veg, until the whole bottom of the pot was caramelized brown and everything smelled wonderful. I threw in the drippings from last night's roasted chicken, the last half a breast from said chicken, one can of chicken broth and enough water to make four cups and brought it to a boil and put the mix (which included rice) in, brought it to a boil and threw it in the oven for an hour.

Jet and I took squares of our lemon bars and took them downstairs to play the Original Crash Bandicoot together. When the timer went off, we trooped back upstairs and I made Jet his corn dog and we ate. It was *good*, a little salty, but spiced nicely and the rice was tender and perfect, and the meats weren't spicy at all, but were tasty enough with everything else. John made salads to go with all the rest, and the mix made enough food for eight, easily. So we'll have dinners and lunches for the next few days if we like. I might freeze a couple servings so that we have meals in the freezer.

After dinner, Jet did homework while I finished off the gloves and started the cowl, and then we played some more together until it was his bedtime.

The last few days I haven't really done much, and today was pretty lazy, too. Tomorrow I should at least get my allergy shots, but I'm still so tired it's going to probably take a toll on me as it usually does. I haven't gotten sick, which has been very good; but I was very amused to find that I actually lost weight while I was on the whole Gulf trip. I guess I worked hard enough, given all that food I ate, I'm still bemused. It's funny realizing, though, that I'm *still* recovering and that my brain and mind just aren't up to half the things I really want them to do. John and I were joking about that together. Well, I thought it would take me a week.

John also sent the emails to everyone about the journal posts and the photographs, and it's funny to watch the flickr hit rate skyrocket, and have all those folks continue their tradition of not commenting on anything. Ah well.
Tags: anime, knitting, review
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