About Arthur Ruger

Married and in a wonderful relationship. Retired Social Worker, Veteran, writer, author, blogger, musician,. Lives in Spokane, Washington

Tuesday 1-15

Cold today.

Lit stove and our sedate morning routine. Coffee in front of the fire and NPR.

Breakfast: Apple sausage, eggs and cauliflower.

KROC around noon. River walk and hot tub.

Dollar Store for batteries and cleaning liquids.

Lietta’s treat at Top of China buffet.

home and struggle to warn up house. Lietta listening to Audible: Man at the Top of the Mountain.

I write in my man cave

Lietta watched Beautiful Boy.

We watched video about Google and FB til I fell asleep.

Then we found a Martin Clunes movie, The Man Who Lost His Head, about returning a head statue to Maoris in New Zealand.




Monday 1-14 Driving Mrs Lietta

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Woke up to temperature of 24 degrees and lit the stove.

As the stove warmed the living room, Lietta says “How do you see us spending this day?”

“Writing,” I said, “cause it’s cold and we don’t want to be out.”

“But there’s sunshine out there. On cold ugly days you can be indoors and write all day. I’d like to take a drive.”

“Where?” I responded, feeling slightly grouchy. “There isn’t someplace we haven’t been nearby.

“KCPX talked about Silver Valley.” she said. “Out there some place like Kellogg.”

I looked it up.

“Silver Valley describes the mining towns along I-90 from around Cataldo to Mullan.”

“I don’t want to do that,” she said.

“Then where?”

“North to include Rathdrum and Spirit Lake.”

The idea was to drive to Priest River and lunch at Mi Pueblo, then east to Sandpoint.

So we gussied up and got in the Highlander. Down the driveway onto Seltice Way and turned north on Huetter Road.

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Followed Huetter to Lancaster Road, then west to Meyer Road and into Rathdrum.

She changed her mind and we turned East on State Highway 53 toward U.S. 95 on the way to Sandpoint first. Then we would Mexican food it after driving from Sandpoint east to Priest River.

We wound up on Old 95 and wandered north paralleling U.S. 95 only west of the railroad tracks. But finally had to cross over to current U.S. 95 and on into Sandpoint.

At that point Lietta wants find the cemetery where her Grandpa Sam Wagner is buried. She got an online notice from Ancestry.com that reported finding Samuel Wagner’s grave.

She looked it up on her phone while we drove to Sandpoint. After checking on the map on her phone and a couple of false starts we wound up at the cemetery in clear but sub-freezing weather and with no idea where the headstone (two if Florence is buried there too).

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Summertime View

We decided to take a day trip in better weather just in case we need to wander around all the graves like Tuco in The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.

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So we drove the 22 miles to Priest River and had good Mexican food.

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Came home right around sunset after being spooked when a deer attempted to jump in our  path but lost her footing and fell. She was okay but got up only after we got by her and another car stopped for her.

So I drove real careful and Lietta watching over me. Rather than music, we listened to NPR “All Things Considered” all the way home.

Lit the stove and settled in for the evening.

Carcasonne Yellow Paint

The second most-visited French attraction now looks like a shooting range. Tourist nightmare?

Photo: Twitter / Philippe Bélaval

This is not (unfortunately) a re-image of the famous Fly4free graphics. Residents of the Carcassonne area are appalled by what the largest medieval urban complex in Europe, the legendary castle and fortifications, has changed. Art or vandalism?

Are you going to France, and one of your dreams is to visit the famous Carcassonne? You must prepare for a big shock. Fortifications look … well, differently than usual.

Felice Varini, a Swiss artist known for his controversial work, was given a chance to “decorate” Carcassonne. The artist paints on architectural and urban spaces, such as walls, buildings and streets. His paintings are characterized by a single vantage point, from which an outside observer can view the whole composition – if he happens elsewhere, he will see only fragments not forming a coherent whole.

What did he paint on the fortifications and walls of Carcassonne?


– It looks like a shooting target! It is simply awful!

This is one of the milder opinions expressed by the residents of Carcassonne and tourists who can see the work of Felice Varini with their own eyes.

Foto: twitter / firenewsfeed

Extreme reactions

The artist glued  thin, aluminum strips – painted in bright colors – on the walls and turrets of the Carcassonne castle complex . The whole looks like concentric circles, spreading on water. Or how … a giant shooting range.

The terms “ugly” and “horror” appear in opinions expressed not only by residents, but also by tourists. Carcassonne is the second most popular attraction of France – annually it is visited by over 4 million tourists from around the world.

– As a medievalist, I am shocked that the French authorities could allow such corruption – comments of this type appear in the media.

Voices of support for modern art are in the minority. The work was created to honor the 20th anniversary of entering the entire complex on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The artist himself does not care about the critics, claiming that the circles fit perfectly into the city’s stone walls.

Understanding art

Apart from the very idea (apparently it does not discuss the tastes), the problem is the way of “displaying the work” .

Of course, it’s the intended effect. Nevertheless, tourists visiting Carcassonne, usually instead of a regular pattern – which is visible only from specific places – have such a picture before their eyes:

Photo: firenewsfeed


Residents of Carcassonne have prepared a special petition in which they demand removal of concentric circles . According to them, it is a disfigurement of a beautiful monument – it was not consulted with them, and the effect of the Swiss artist’s work must look every day.

The work of Felice Varini will be on display until September 30, 2018.

What is your opinion? Close your eyes, imagine a similar installation on the walls of the Wawel castle or the Teutonic castle in Malbork. Would fit?

Travel at the be