Trail of Crumbs

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My presumption with any warning sign, or really any sign at all, is that it exists for a reason. Like, you wouldn’t put a warning sign that says “Watch Your Step!” unless a dozen or so people had tripped on that particular spot. No sign, I figure, is unsolicited or unprovoked.

Which is why the two that I saw in Sorrento, near the docks for the ferries to Capri, were so darn delightful. Because they do not feel unsolicited. They feel like a specific response to the crazy actions of southern Italians.

This was the sign in the bathroom. When I first saw it, I thought I was hallucinating, because NOTHING could be so magical. Notice, also, that it isn’t translated. Do you know why? Because NO ONE BUT ITALIANS WOULD THINK TO DO THIS THING IN THE FIRST PLACE.




I was walking around the 4th arrondissement in Paris when I saw this:


I had to stare at it for a few moments to fully grasp the awesomeness that was happening.

It’s David Duchovny – FOX MOULDER HIMSELF – modeling for some brand that we don’t have here in the states. It’s bizarre to the point of being amazing, right? And it’s so very random. I mean, if it were the mid to late 90s, I’d get it. That was Duchovny’s heyday. But IT’S 2008, PEOPLE.*


There are times when I have trouble accepting that I am, in fact, an adult.

Despite having voted in THREE presidential elections, consistently writing grocery lists that don’t include candy, and being carded approximately NEVER, I still  can’t wrap my head around this whole “adulthood” thing.

I’m fairly certain that someone fudged up the math, and we’ll soon find out that I’m actually about 12 or so. And while that revelation would be somewhat comforting, it would bring forth a whole bunch of problems, too (for example, Rand and I have been together for nearly a dozen years, meaning that we started dating when he was 22, and I was, um … zero. Making him, in a rather literal sense, a cradle robber. Also, let’s be fair: I’d look really terrible for 12. Like, I’d have to be a serious meth-addict in order to look as old as I do and still be in middle school. Like non-stop meth. Meth meth meth meth meth. Frankly, that sounds like a lot of work. And meth-smoking.)

Still, being 12 would explain why I can’t stop giggling when I see things like this:

I mean, come on. YOU GUYS. IT SAYS LABIA.  (more…)

Sometimes, I take for granted how much my husband puts up with.


Indeed, that might be the understatement of the year. If my beloved is reading this, he’s probably done a spit take all over his computer while sputtering, “YOU THINK?”

My poor, maligned love. He puts up with a lot. From me. And during the holidays, from his in-laws, too. Which I argue is his fault.

I mean, I was born into them. I had no choice. He walked right into this situation, mostly sober. THE FOOL.


My dear, confusing mother.


I’ve just returned from California. I spent several days spent in the company of my family, which is always a fascinating experience. Nothing makes me question reality more.

I’ve tried explaining to my friends that my relations see things differently than the rest of the world, but my point is often lost.

“All families are insane,” they say, nodding sympathetically. And then they’ll tell me about some aunt of theirs with an excessive collection of hat pins and no hats, and laugh at how ridiculous the whole thing is.

Hat pins! How delightfully zany!


Rows and rows of cottages.


Folks, I am ill, ill, ill. I was supposed to leave for California this morning, but changed my ticket last night. It was around that time that my nostrils decided to be The Blob for Halloween (they like to get started on their costume early, it seems).


All energy has been sucked out of me and replaced with mucus.

But I feel I need to reply to some of the comments on yesterday’s post, during which several lovely folks noted that Castle Leslie seemed more like a manor than a castle. There was a bit of protesting about the lack of a moat, and there was certainly no drawbridge, and from my vantage point, I saw absolutely zero people wearing crowns and making decrees.


Words are funny little things.

I know, because I spend most of my days wrestling with them, trying to manipulate them into what I want them to be, often to no avail. Have you ever tried chiseling someone’s likeness in a a hunk of jell-o? It’s something like that.

But I love them, and I can’t rightly abandon them, because my blog would be oh-so-boring without words. It would be nothing more than photos of cupcakes and me making out with my husband. (I realize it’s not much more than that now, but it has the potential to be more, thanks to words. Or so I tell myself.)


My darling husband has a slightly inflated impression of my foreign language abilities. A haggling session in Cuzco left him believing that my Spanish was far better than it actually is (It’s not that great. I am, however, an awesome haggler). I allow it, of course. We all believe slight exaggerations about our loved ones. He wants to think I speak perfect Spanish? Fine by me. If he believes I’m trilingual, then I get to believe he’s suave enough to give Cary Grant a run for his money.

What? It could happen.

Besides, it’s not all untrue: I do have enough basic knowledge left over from high school Spanish that I can be of some help when we’re in Spain or South America. Not much, mind you, but enough to (hopefully) not get him arrested. For example, when were in Madrid he saw a sign that said señoras …

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