Saturday, March 12, 2011

Trying to think normally in a not-normal world

The situation in Japan is bearing on my thoughts this morning. Beyond the horrific damage and suffering that the population is facing due to the earthquake and tsunami, there are the dangers from the malfunctioning nuclear plants in Fukushima prefecture. I worked in the nuclear power industry before retirement; I am well aware of the possible consequences of these malfunctions.

The news is frustratingly non-technical. I know how these plants operate and am trying to piece together from the press releases the actual state of the plants, but what we are told is not complete or exact, so I have to guess. Why didn't the backup power diesel generators start at the plant? What happened to the equipment so that cooling is difficult to reestablish? We can't be sure of anything from what we have been told.

Meanwhile, I think about bloggers I have met online who live in Japan. I don't know enough about the country to know if they live very close to the nuclear plants. I think some are nearby, at least in neighboring prefectures, but how far away is that? For people that I have never met face to face, I am very concerned about their welfare and safety, and am grateful that they continue to blog when possible to keep us apprised.

But what to do? It would be easy to sit and brood and worry. When that is the option, I find it best to keep my hands busy, at least. And what better way than to piece quilt blocks? So I downloaded the next block of Barbara Brackman's Civil War sampler and got to work. Now that it is complete, I have added it to the design wall with the others and need to post a picture of my progress:
Not a great picture, mind you, a little crooked, but a picture nonetheless. Here are her ten blocks plus her alternate block for the seven sisters stars, and my pieced star that might also be a substitute. Twelve blocks using mostly fat quarters of the "Arnold's Attic" collection plus a few Brackman Civil War repros. The kind of colors I love.

I'm still looking for an eagle and shield applique pattern for the center block in the layout. Any ideas?


Nancy said...

Great progress on the Civil War blocks.

Cheri said...

I get that stay busy in the face of disastor totally! Fons & Porter featured a very nice eagle & shield in a quilt on PBS a few weeks ago. It might be on their website.