Saturday, September 24, 2016

Block Parties and Book Sales

I was surprised at how cloudy and blah it was when I got up this morning. It was supposed to be sunny today. Brightened the dreary weather with breakfast and more Rebels. Zeb and Imperial Agent Kallus find themselves trapped together on a frigid moon of Genosis. They're understandably wary of each other at first, until Zeb discovers that Kallus as as much reason to hate his race as he does to hate Imperials. The two then find a way to work together to escape monsters and get the attention of the Ghost to rescue them.

Started out around quarter after 10 for today's errand run. The Collingswood Farm Market continues to roll out the fall produce. Peaches and Chinese beans are done, but I saw large pumpkins, pears, and broccoli for the first time today, and spinach for the first time since spring. I ended up with the pears, small gala apples, red and orange peppers, mushrooms, and an heirloom tomato.

Rode around Collingswood and Westmont for a little while, looking for yard sale. I didn't find a ton (a lot of people must have thought the weather was going to be worse), but I did run into a few. Picked up the 20th anniversary Spirit of Christmas craft/cook book and a Motown greatest hits CD collection from one in Collingswood. Checked out really big "yard" sale at a church on the other side of town. I considered the American Girl "Penny" horse for Felicity, but I didn't know how I'd carry her home.

Though it was cool, more than it should have been for the time of year, I was still thirsty from riding around. (The digital sign at the Westmont Fire House listed the temperature as 64 around quarter of noon.) I treated myself to one of those frozen blended drinks from the Rita's in Westmont. They didn't have half the flavors I wanted to try, probably because tomorrow is their last day of the season. I finally mixed pina colada and strawberry watermelon. Actually...not bad. The watermelon gave it a nice zing, and there were lots of big strawberry, watermelon, and pineapple pieces.

Crossed Haddon Avenue and headed to Crystal Lake Road for the annual Haddon Township Block Party. Every year in late September, Haddon Township holds a fair on the block alongside their park and public pool facilities. There's rides and games for the kids, food trucks, a small car show, a stage with musical acts, and crafts from Studio LuLoo. I'd never seen so many bounce houses! Themes included a stagecoach, Lightning McQueen, a merry-go-round, and SpongeBob SquarePants.

I ended up buying one of the best deals there. The Haddon Township High School rowing club was selling a bottle of water, a soft pretzels, and a plastic mug with their logo on it for two dollars. I wasn't really that hungry anyway, so the pretzel became my lunch.

My next stop was Haddonfield. Their Lions Club holds a huge flea market in the wide parking lot behind one of the office buildings on Haddon Avenue. Their prices are usually pretty high, but for once, I did consider some things. Finally picked up a Christmas present for my friend Amanda.

Normally, the Haddonfield Library's annual book sale is on the triangle island outside of the library, under a series of tents. I don't know if it's because they just finished remodeling, or they thought the tents wouldn't be enough room, but it was moved to the Haddonfield First Presbyterian Church a few blocks down on King's Highway this year. First of all, it took me forever to figure out where it was. Second, by the time I got there, there wasn't much more room than in the tents, and most of it was picked over. I did find a copy (looks like the first release, in fact) of Belles On Their Toes, the sequel to the original Cheaper By the Dozen. Also grabbed the soundtrack to Animaniacs, the original cast album for Pippin, and a bag with chocolate brownie and sesame seed cookies.

I'd had quite enough riding around by then. I rode straight home, passing by the block party on my way. The traffic wasn't too bad, which was another reason I wanted to get moving. And of course, the sun finally started coming out as I rode home. It had sprinkled slightly when I first came out, but it was mostly cloudy.

Devoted a couple of hours to writing after I got home and put everything away. Boba Fett had snitched about Leia, Jyn, Cassian, and the nerds meeting to the Imperial Gang earlier. The Imperials shove their way into Jyn and Cassian's cottage. Jyn turns the tapes and the plans over to Leia, who flees, along with the nerds. The Imperials chase them across the cottages' backyards. Leia finally turns the information over to Arturro, the closest person to her, and the only one who knows how to work the tapes. The nerds flee to the Rogues' party. Leia's not so lucky. Vader grabs her when she tries to run.

Decided to try something different after I broke for dinner. I have a couple of different types of flour in the pantry, enough to attempt Multi-Grain Muffins. Tossed in the last of the chocolate chips to get rid of them. Ohhh, not bad at all. A little sweet and crunchy - the dark chocolate adds a nice contrast to the nuttiness.

Finished out Rebels while I baked and ate dinner. Kanan's tired of the Inquisitors constantly attacking them. He and Ezra join Ashoka at a Jedi Temple. Each has a vision there, Kanan fights the former Grand Inquisitor, who warns him about Ezra and makes him a true Jedi Knight. Ezra has a chat with Yoda. Ashoka's not as thrilled with what she sees in her vision, which reveals the true identity of Darth Vader...

Chopper has his own problems on another mission. He steals a new leg and hides on an Imperial cruiser. He meets and befriends a protocol droid who had once been a navigator in the Clone Wars, but is now relegated to inventory duty and is abused by the Imperials. When he removes his restraining bolt, the other droid realizes he means what he's been told...and that he can go ahead and give the Rebels a vital piece of information that'll keep them from flying into a trap.

The season ends with Ashoka, Ezra, and Kanan off to another Jedi Temple, this one a Sith temple on Malachor. Separated from the others, Ezra meets a seemingly wise old former Sith with strange red and black markings and horns on his head. He claims he wants revenge on the Sith for dumping him and convinces Ezra to get a Sith holocron. Kanan knows who he really is...and that he's using the boy to reveal the Temple's true abilities.

The Temple's real identity is the least of their worries. The Inquisitors and Darth Vader are all there as well. Ezra's livid when Kanan is maimed during the duels. While they stop the Temple and go after the Sith holocron, Ashoka confronts the man who had once been her master...

Oh wow. Now I'm really looking forward to Season 3 (which actually began today, I believe). Seasons 1 and 2 are the only DVDs currently on my Christmas wish list. I really like this show. The writing is top-notch, the animation is colorful and well-done, the music is downright amazing, and while it's not as dark as Force Awakens (or apparently as the previous Star Wars cartoon series The Clone Wars), it's a lot of fun in its own right.

As with the first season, you'll need some working knowledge of the Star Wars universe, especially the prequels and The Clone Wars series, to really understand what's going on here. If you're a Star Wars fan (especially of the prequels), this is a fun expansion of the years between the prequels and the sequels that gets a hearty recommendation from me.

Ended my night in the bath, looking over my new Christmas book and listening to jazz. Ahh. A lovely way to end a lovely week. I really needed that after all the riding around.

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