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olt! is a way station and oasis on the ancient road from Bedlam to Bellevue, dedicated to free and open discussion of topics moving heart and spirit.
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Lion on the Prowl
tofu cat litter! It's not dusty and you can flush it. Highly recommended.
Really? I never heard of that! Interesting. Probably a little expensive? I have a septic tank out here in the country. I wonder if it's septic friendly.
Appears that at least one of the Great Capitalist Statans features it https://www.google.com/search?client=opera&q=tofu+cat+litter&sourceid=opera&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8
It clumps but then in water the clumps dissolve into a cloud of soy ... clean and neat.
I might have to try it if I can afford it! I gather that your cat likes it.
Just for fun, an accidentally perfect picture of a gone but not forgotten dog named Comet flying through the air!
Mine calves still ache.
It seemed like good exercise, a trek of 4 miles or so each way. That's like walking uptown to the 80's and back; nothing to sneeze at but, hey, this will be an outing and getting a taste of nature isn't always easy for us city folk. Don't know how elevation 3,140 feet figures in there, we'll find out, but they mention the rocky slopes of the trail make for a very interesting day hike
Sunday early morning we set off from our Bed and Breakfast on the Village Green, north on paved road heading into the hills, according to the map it's two miles to a monastery at the trailhead, then another two to Overlook Mountain. The paved road part should be a snap. Immediately at the outskirts of town, just around the corner really, the road takes on a decidedly upward tilt and by the time the last of the houses disappear in the trees we're sweating profusely and breathing gets heavy. No other hikers are in sight. An occasional car breezes by, navigating the switchbacks. Hitchhiking does come to mind, but none of the occupants seem to paying much attention to us crawling up the hill, so we push on. Frequent signs line the road:
Be a good neighBEAR.
Don't feed the bears!
Strange sounds come from the forest. Possibly we've bitten off a bit too much, and we'll just have some refreshments at the monastery which should be right around the next bend and then we'll head back downhill. Another sign:
KTD is not a good neighbor!
Presumably KTD is known to feed bears and the neighbors don't like it.
The monastery glimmering through the trees is a most welcome sight after an hour on the road. It's a large tan structure trimmed in gold, crowned by a gold stupa. No one is in sight though we hear chanting and there's a smell of burning wood. A friendly man materializes out of the smoke and invites us to a coke machine. The Karma Triyan Dharmachakra monastery is having a service; we can't enter the temple but we're free to relax on the grounds while admiring his elaborately crafted metal pendant dotted with heavy turquoise stones, aligned with his chakras, thereby warding off harmful radiation and producing a healthy body and aura. He also creates other sculptures and eagerly demonstrates a heavy copper spiral in the shape of a pyramid which vibrates under my hands. It's good for people working with computers he says, asks for our opinion about selling them in SoHo.
The smoke is from a fire stoked with hemlock wood which, along with the service now in progress, is meant to finally lift a 5 year snag the monastery has been unable to overcome. Hemlock captures the problem and burning it makes it go away, doncha'no. It seems the monastery needs to expand, plans totally stymied by a disapproving township which probably would like the see the temple razed instead. We stop by the fire to add a piece of presumed hemlock before crossing the road where we contemplate the map at the trailhead and decide to leave that for some other day.
Monday morning, while waiting for the bus back to the City, my eyes take a last look up at rich rolling green hills climbing up the mountain ... and there is the monastery stupa sticking out of the green like a ... It suddenly dawns on me who KTD is and why some may think they're not a good neighbor.
Two Japanese NYU students at the table next to us giggle loudly while discussing their boyfriends before suddenly switching to Japanese, making us miss the rest of the story. That turned out to be only part of tonight's disappointment.
Rangoon Night Noodles, delicately toasted garlic and bits of duck meat with greasy noodles. Why do they do that? We should have ordered the seafood but perhaps not, the plate of veggies and shrimp on another neighbor's table glistens suspiciously more than your average Chinese takeout.
Portions are twice as large as I recall from some years ago when we last visited and when I'm sure the dishes were a bit more delicate. The rave review in this week's free Metro paper should have given us pause since it loudly praised the green tea leaf salad which I clearly remembered as something which never lives up to its interesting description.
'Sordid appetizers where definitely deep fried, though a traditional hot tamarind soup with cabbage, spinach and squash in a crock pot turned out to be tasty and satisfying, ample for two at a price for one. Curried mango pork is tender, can't quite taste mango though; the dish has an unusual musty curry flavor with a bit of liquid red fat floating on top.
Our carafe of Cabernet helps immensely - a bit raw and perfect for cutting through the grease.
After stuffing ourselves we waddle home through a heavy mist just in time to rest a bit and catch the last of David Garland's Evening Muse on WNYC with him complaining that at 52 degrees on January 29 when is Winter going to start, before we split a pint of Ben and Jerry's Chocolate which happens to be the best part of this Sunday's dinner.