a travel adventure:i-70 closed/gestural identity/how i screwed up / by Philip Tarlow

6PM update:we used a lot of windshield washer fluid during our travel adventure yesterday (scroll down to read about this). so i bought a gallon of washer fluid and thought i'd refill the reservoir this morning. i hadn't popped the hood in many months, got confused about which of the 3 reservoir caps was the right one and mistakenly poured about 1/4 gallon into what turned out to be the engine coolant reservoir.

when i realized my mistake i called bmw service. they said not to start the engine and to have it towed to a repair facility, where they would flush the system and replace the coolant (bmw service is 200 miles from us, so we'd have to get towed to alamosa, 50 miles away.) 

fortunately, i called a car repair guy in alamosa, who suggested simply siphoning off the washer fluid i had poured in, which would be sitting on top of the reservoir since i hadn't started the engine & it wouldn't have circulated yet through the engine block. our friend david, when i called him, offered to go to the crestone hardware store and buy an inexpensive thin, flexible siphoning device...a plastic tube with a squeeze-tip to get the fluid flowing, at which point gravity takes over. the whole operation took only a half hour, and that was that. common sense and a little ingenuity won out!

as i write this yet another major snowstorm is moving in.

our meeting in golden, co. tuesday afternoon was very successful. it looks like we gained a new team member, who brings to the table exactly what we need at this point; marketing savvy as well as web design skills.

whenever we visit our friends and actionlab360 team members marc & erin, i love to engage with their 3 year old daughter in making drawings. so on tuesday i took out my box of drawing materials and drawing book and we began to play. i showed her how to use the pencil sharpener, which she loved. then i introduced her to two mark making tools she was unfamiliar with: a rectangular piece of graphite and a japanese ink brush, which has it's own supply of ink. above are two of the results. on the left are the marks she made with the brush and some red pencil marks i added afterwards. on the right, you can see the first marks she made with the piece of graphite (upper left).you can immediately discern what i'm calling a child's "gestural identity" the moment they put brush or pencil to paper. midway through our process, she put down her brush, came round the table, stood next to me and declared "i'm going to give you a kiss." so i leaned over and she kissed me on the cheek. it was so sweet.

when our grandson philip, who lives in athens, greece, was about the same age, i introduced him to the brush and the results were just as beautiful, as well as revealing his "gestural identity." his marks were quite different, as you can see on row 2, above.

this "gestural identity" remains with a person for his or her entire life. it is ones innate, kinesthetic response to the world, and is neither right or wrong, good or bad. it simply is.

following our meeting in golden, we stayed tuesday night in denver and began our 2 hour drive to edwards, near vail at 12:30. about 10 miles form our destination, we ran into a very long line of vehicles. during the winter months, on this stretch of the I-70, accidents are common. we sat in our car for 2 hours. when mikela went out to ask other motorists and police what was the deal, we learned there had been a major accident blocking the entire 2 lanes, involving a semi and several cars. tow trucks and police cars roared by the the shoulder lane, and finally it was announced we would be taking a 90 mile detour on two lesser roads which we knew would likely be snow packed and icy. we had to go south then back north and come out just west of the accident, in mintern and only a few miles from our destination:edwards.

when we reached the 24, there had been ANOTHER accident, with cars backed up and treacherously icy roads. we saw ambulances, fire trucks and police cars racing towards the accident scene. so we turned around & drove back home. when we arrived back in crestone, we had been sitting in our car for over 8 hours.

more later, we're on a conference call with the school in edwards., getting on the same page with the teacher we work there.