Saturday, June 12, 2021

Rainbow Connections

Kicked off the morning with breakfast and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. "Mickey's Choo Choo Express" is more-or-less this show's second Christmas episode. Mickey and the gang use a train to pick up the rest of their friends to enjoy Professor Ludwig Von Drake's non-melting snow. They have to stick to a timetable and figure out what to give Conductor Pete when he stops them and who their "mystery guests" are.

Headed out after the episode ended. I had a lot of errands to run, starting with a brief stop at the CVS on the border of Oaklyn and Collingswood. I needed a sparkling water and money for the farm market later.

The Collingswood Farm Market was packed when I finally pulled in around quarter after 11. The late spring and early summer harvest is in full swing now. Booths groan with giant yellow squash and zucchini, cucumbers, strawberries, cherries, peas, asparagus, beets, and every type of leafy green there is. Dogs still aren't allowed and the food is still packaged and not to be eaten there, but otherwise, things are pretty normal. Musicians sang and played "The Rainbow Connection" as I strolled from booth to booth. Strawberries were already sold out, but I did pick up cherries, North Carolina blueberries, bananas from the tropical fruit wholesaler, snap peas, fresh feta from the dairy booth, and a cucumber. 

Rode to and from the Farm Market through Newton Lake Park. It couldn't have been a nicer day for a bike ride. While cloudy, it was also breezy and much cooler, likely in the upper 70's-lower 80's. The wind left bottle green ripples on the waters of the river and ruffled the deep green leaves on the shore.

Put everything away, then grabbed my laundry and went right back out. While I didn't have a huge load like on Monday, I still needed clean work clothes. Worked on story notes while they were in the washer, then strolled down to WaWa for a frozen hot chocolate and a soft pretzel.

As I walked back from WaWa, I noticed tents and crowds on the street between the empty grass lot where Newton Diner used to be and the art building. Strolled across the street and down the block to check it out. The booths sold rainbow-themed silk-screened shirts, jewelry, and other crafts in honor of Pride Month. Kids painted rainbow colors on rocks and their faces and pirouetted in colorful tutus, while their parents bought hot dogs and burgers from food trucks. Balloon artists twisted creatures from latex for the kids on the lot, while a man delighted the kids with massive bubbles from huge bubble wands.

Quickly folded everything and put it away when I got home, then went out once again. I noticed a sign on my way to the laundromat indicating a vendor fair. The town set up a small craft show on the road leading to the library. It wasn't nearly as large or as noisy as the one by the art building. I admired some of the crafts and moved on.

My last stop for the day was the Acme for grocery shopping and my schedule. Strawberries were buy one, get one this week; they'd make up for missing the ones at the farm market. Had online coupons for the expensive OGX shampoos and conditioners, Acme generic cereal, Turkey Hill ice cream, and free eggs. Found ground turkey and a crabmeat-stuffed flounder fillet with manager's coupons. Restocked milk, white flour, yogurt, and chicken drumsticks. 

My schedule next week is somewhat of an improvement. Still long hours and a lot of them, but at least they're separated. I asked for Tuesday off for counseling; got next Friday off as well. 

Went straight home after I finished. Had a Banana-Berry Smoothie for lunch, then made Blueberry Muffins while watching the 1966 version of Through the Looking Glass. I go further into this musical TV extravaganza at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog. 

Musicals On TV - Through the Looking Glass (1966)

Worked on writing after the movie ended. Richard and his sons explain that the Red King only wants to play games his way and run all of the Underground Realms by his strict rules. Anyone who doesn't follow his rules - to the letter - will be punished. That's why he attacked the Caucus Race earlier. They played games the Red King didn't approve of with no rules. 

Broke at 6:30. Made a delicious summer meal of flounder stuffed with crab meat, spinach salad with feta cheese, and roasted potatoes for dinner while watching Alice at the Palace. This 1981 filming of a Broadway stage version of Alice featured Meryl Streep as the curious title character, along with Mark Linn-Baker of Perfect Strangers as the sweet mime White Knight, Russian Mock Turtle, and both rabbits, Debbie Allen as a ruthless showgirl Queen of Hearts, and Betty Aberlin of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood as Alice's sister, one of the queens in Looking Glass Land, and the female singer in the Lobster Quadrille.

Finished the night online with one of my favorite animated films, The Secret of NIMH, at Tubi. Mrs. Brisby (Elizabeth Hartman) is supposed to be moving her children just prior to planting season on the fields, but her son Timmy (Ian Fried) is desperately ill with pneumonia. Crotchety family friend Auntie Shrew (Hermoine Badderly) suggests she visit The Great Owl (John Carradine). This awe-inspiring fowl directs her to the resourceful rats who live in the rose bush on the farm. Mrs. Brisby discovers that not only are they far from ordinary rats, but her late husband Johnathan once saved their lives when they escaped from an animal testing facility. Wise old Nichodemus (Derek Jacobi) gives her a special amulet and tells her they'll move her home, before they leave for good. Scheming Jenner (Paul Shenar) has his own ideas of where they belong. In the end, it takes an act of true courage for Mrs. Brisby to show everyone how strong a mother's love can be.

Gorgeous animation and a ravishing Jerry Goldsmith score makes Don Bluth's first effort by far the best of  his films. Great cast, too, with Hartman touching as stronger-than-she-looks Mrs. Brisby, Jacobi and Carradine appropriately majestic as the larger, more intelligent animals who help her along, and Dom DeLouise hilarious as bumbling crow Jeremy. Frank discussions of death, illness, and animal testing and two gristly on-screen deaths make this strictly for older kids who love animal stories or sword-and-sorcery-style fantasy tales. 

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