red and green

Flowers For My Birthday

As I noted yesterday.  It was my birthday a few days ago.  I’m now in the Post-Birthday Slump. Sigh.  Another year older and no closer to ruling Midgard.  The human female’s nasty acetone threat was hurtful too.  I am in desperate need of cheering up.

And since a happy Sigyn never fails to make me smile, we are doing what my beloved likes best, walking and looking for flowers.  No place fancy, just around the block between chilly showers.  It’s not too early for winter annuals.

See?  There’s the smile I needed!  Sherardia is an old friend.

sherardia

And the burr clover is in bloom too.  What fun!

medicago

Of course, it’ll be more fun when it gets around to making burrs.  Watching the human female pick them out of her shoelaces and socks is one of my favorite spring traditions.

Sigyn has found one she really likes.  It’s called “cowboy satchel”—or something like that.

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Tiny, delicate white flowers, heart-shaped fruit, sturdy enough to climb—What’s not to love?

From her high perch, she has a good, close-up look at the fuzzy purple henbit blossoms.

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I will admit to liking this one as well.  Purple is a most fitting color for royalty, they say.

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As well, the flowers look like little sock puppets, all proclaiming, “Hail, Loki!  Ruler-to-be of all Midgard!”

And, since I have magic at my disposal, I can actually make them do it.

What have you found now, my love?

dandelion

“It’s a dandelion!  You can make wishes on them!”

Really?  How quaint!  And what are you going to wish for?

“That you have a wonderful year ahead!”

I tell you, mortals, this woman is too good for me.

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Konnichiwa

The humans are taking advantage of the jaunt to the Biggish City to the West to visit a Purveyor of Foreign Goods. 

It seems a friendly place.  This feline has lost no time in greeting Sigyn cheerfully.

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I think it is teaching her a little dance.

There is also a display of colorful ceramics.  What knobby little teapots!

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Ooh!  Foreign foodstuffs.  Those are always fun to poke about in.   Sigyn is excited about these beans, probably because they’re red.

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Oh!  Sigyn, we’ve had this stuff before–these are dessert-y beans, not vegetable beans.  Their usual habitat is buns and dumplings, and they’d make a very odd chili.

See?  The human female says that “daifuku” are little sticky rice cakes, usually full of red bean paste.

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This package has red ones and green ones.   I think we need to buy them!

But I’m not sure about those middle buns…

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Unidentified Filled Objects?  いいえ、どうもありがとうございます

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In Which Sigyn and I Go All Watson and Crick, Part II: The Base-ics

We are at last back to work on our DNA model.  Sigyn, you and I have our work cut out for us (or is that punched out for us?) if we want to make some DNA.  Ready to start?  Here we go!

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I think we will need these sticker-things last, so let’s put them aside for now.

First, we’ll have to punch out all the red, yellow, green, and blue pieces.

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That was certainly predictable.

Next come the long gray strips.  We have to punch the little biscuits out of all the holes.

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(Poke, poke, poke.)  Gungnir is very handy for this.  Be sure to save the biscuits for naptime, Sigyn.  I have a suspicion they will just fit up the human female’s nose. Gungnir will be handy for that, too.

Fandral’s mustache!  That’s a lot of parts.

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This is more complicated than I thought.  Let us go read up on Midgardian nucleic acids and come back tomorrow when we’ve some idea what we’re doing…

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Loki in London, Day 6: Celebrating the Arts Decorative, Horticultural, Culinary, and Musical

Today is to be devoted to the arts.  Yay, culture.

We are doing another Waitrose breakfast.  While the humans are inside, choosing what they want to eat, Sigyn and I are admiring the flooring in Gloucester Arcade.  We decided to color-swap today.

LokiL

SigynS

By Volstagg’s crumb-filled beard!  The humans are eating while running for the Tube and while riding.  I’m pretending I don’t know them.

Our goal this morning is the Geffrye Museum.  (Yes, that is spelled properly–it is one of those words which looks incorrect no matter what.)  According to the humans, it is housed in a long building which used to be an almshouse.  Now it “documents how the furnishings and home life of the middle class have changed since about the (Midgardian) year 1600.”  Really?  This is hardly a fitting pastime for a god and a the rightful King of Asgard.  I do not care how peons lived!

Sigyn, however, finds the staged rooms “charming.” Very well, beloved.  I will go along.  I will sit in the replica chair.

Geffrye1-chair

But I won’t enjoy it.

Table, rug, china, table, picture, chair, table.  Repeat.  Oh, good–we have reached the ugly, modern furnishings, which must mean we are done!

This is better.  Outdoors, there is a series of rather nice gardens.

geffrye-garden4geffrye5Geffrye3-garden

Sigyn and the human female are quite beside themselves.  They have just hugged a Cox’s Orange Pippin apple tree…

Every flower must be admired,

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every label read, and every little violet greeted by name.

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Odin’s eyepatch!  It is now the middle of the afternoon.  I did not think it possible to take up half a day with antimacassars and wisteria, but we appear to have done so.  I can’t be the only one who is now famished.  That hastily-gobbled breakfast was a long time ago, wasn’t it?

The feeble human female is feeling the effects of yesterday’s dismal weather and is droning a soliloquy about her impending head-cold.  Thus, we are in search of something warm and curative.  Since we are in a part of town which is home to a large handful of Vietnamese restaurants, the likelihood of encountering some hot noodle soup seems good. But since the humans have taken up so much of my time with fripperies, I have arranged that each cafe has closed until the evening meal time.  So there.

Curses!  They have located one that is open for a bit longer.  There are skewers of chicken in a peanutty sauce to begin with.  There were two on the plate, but the human female has already inhaled one.

chickensatay

The human male has tucked into a bowl of noodles with roast pork.  (What’s the green stuff?)

pork-vermicelli

The female is hoping her over-accessorized chicken soup will take care of her scratchy throat and sniffles.

pho

You distract her, Sigyn, and I’ll slip those chilies in.  I hear they’re loaded with vitamin C.

We have now moved on to the part of town known as Westminster.  The humans have tickets to a concert this evening, but there is time to explore a bit.  Hold!  What in the Nine Realms is that?

burghers

I come from Asgard, and even so, I have never seen anything so…so decorated in my life!  (The human male says this is because I have not yet seen the Albert Memorial , whatever that is.)  Carved stone, tile, paint, mosaic, bronze, gilding–it’s a checklist of materials and surface techniques!  It is the platypus of architecture! I would bet money a committee was involved…

It has turned chilly, and the human female is snuffling in her many woolly layers, but she insists on exploring the neighborhood.  This perforce is a  s  l  o  w  process, because she stops to examine every curl of wrought iron railing and exclaim over each bit of ancient carved stone, while the human male is subjecting his camera to some sort of endurance test.

Finally!  We are now in St. John’s, Smith Square, a church-turned-concert hall.  Look, Sigyn, we have very good seats!

concert

Now we can sit back and enjoy the works of Mr. Handel and Mr. Wassenauer.

(later.)  I will admit it–that was a very good concert.  The humans were too cheap to purchase one of the fancy program booklets, but I convinced the gentleman behind them that he did not want his, so they have pounced upon the discarded document and scooped it up to take home.  You’re welcome.  (They won’t thank me quite so much when it’s time to load all the paper they’re accumulating into the burgeoning suitcases for the trip home…)

We’ve a bit of a walk back to our Tube stop, right past some of the most iconic parts of the London skyline.  Look, Sigyn–I had them light things up in our colors tonight.

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Today, London–tomorrow the world!

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In Which We Make Sparkly Things, Part I: Setting It Up

Sigyn, did you say something?

crystals2

Ah, yes.  These things.  The human female’s mother is quite the crafty sort.  I do not mean that she is devious. Rather, she is usually making something delicious, beautiful, or fun.  On the recent visit, she taught me how to make these homemade “geodes.”  (Beautiful and fun, but not edible.)

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Would you like to make some of our own?  First, choose a pipecleaner.  This will determine what color base the crystals form on.

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That was predictable.  Now we mash the pipe cleaners into knots.  I am good at mashing.

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I like your idea of putting both of our colors into the same geode.  Let’s do that.  Now we must suspend the knot in a glass vase.  First, cut some monofilament or some curly ribbon.  Yes, sweetie, the human female has a lot of embroidery thread and string, but they won’t pull out of the finished geode.  It has to be something slick.

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Next,—  Sigyn!  How did you get in there?

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Sigh.  One Sigyn, safe and sound.  Now we position the pipe-cleaner knot so that it will hang near the bottom of the vase, but not touch the bottom or sides.

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Tie the ribbon around something to keep it in place.

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Sigyn is quite the acrobat!  And I am clever with knives…

Now we make the magic solution.  (I say “magic,” but it isn’t.  Not like my magic.  No, it’s really only chemistry.)  I will dissolve one cup of borax powder in three cups of water.  This will make enough for two vase-fulls.  Now we pour it in carefully, cover the vase with a tea-towel, and wait.  Tiny crystals should start to form on the vase walls and pipe cleaners in just a few hours.  By tomorrow, our geode will be ready!

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