Enter the Dragon


No, I’m not a fan of martial arts flicks, though Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon was a beauty and Tom Cruise was tolerable in The Last Samurai. And now that I reflect, the original Seven Samurai kept my attention and I’ve watched The Matrix at least twice.

OK maybe I am a fan. Reservedly.

But my dragon is static. And it’s a paper dragon.

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The dragon emerges…

Here is the object of my attention, the focus of my diligent searching, the slow, minute-consuming ploy called a jigsaw puzzle. I am on week two of this endeavor, squeezing in minutes and squeezing mismatched pieces till my back begins to fire up and my eyes glaze.

I’ve tried various strategies to fit this together. I’ve assembled all pieces with shared colors. I’ve a pile of dragon pieces and a pile of phoenix pieces and a pile of floral pieces. I’ve separated all the pieces with double grey lines, all the pieces with two notches and an open center, all the viney pieces. It is going slowly. The maker deliberately interchanged colors. The dragon twists from a coiled yellow back to a verdant green scale. There are three borders and all of them grey. And, there are those many pieces without a notch; the ones that lean against another, and make assembly near impossible.

Pieces of the puzzle

Pieces of the puzzle

I got this at the thrift shop for a few bucks, tantalized by its 1000 parts and the whole image of an antique Chinese porcelain plate. This is my first puzzle attempt in years. Where did I get the nerve to tangle with a dragon?

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