Wednesday, August 30, 2006
On the other hand, once I've recoverd the flu has becomes a life affirming experience, as in 'Hurrah! I AM ALIVE! I DID NOT DIE!'
Yes, pathetic, silly but 100% true.
I made it past this bout of flu. Missed two days of work and did not get sacked nor was I put on bread line at Loaves & Fishes. Still feel like crap but managed to dress myself and muddle myself into my office. Screaming red welts and patches on my arms, legs and knees are nearly invisible now.
Post Script: Ok, now it's after work and I can't walk on my right ankle. I didn't do anything to cause the stupid ankle any grief so WTF? I'm that pissed.
Saturday, August 26, 2006
Today was rather nice anyway. I finally broke down and bought a new couch and a recliner chair. I haven’t had my living room look so… normal… in ages. The color scheme requires a good deal of work. Everything, the walls, the couch, the picture over the couch are in shades of green; looks like everything is covered in moss; will have to improve things by getting a new rug, a picture over the couch, and throw pillows that will bring out other colors – mauves, burgundys and the like. But all that will have to wait for another time.
The couch and recliner were delivered this morning. Had to shower and dress up so delivery men would not run for their lives when I opened the door. So anyway, for today all I have done is lounge on my pretty new furniture and ache. Oh, how I ache.
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Last night I ushered for a hilarious performance of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum at the Music Circus. I had my mind on yesterday’s brainstorm for buying a place in Crescent City and I kept making stupid errors, which happily enough, only damaged my ego. Early this morning I went to the grocery store for eggs and when I returned, as I drove toward my house I realized I had left the garage door was wide open - GAK! I never forget to close it so I was obvious I was still operating on emergency braincells.
A short time later I stared preparing breakfast and there was a knock at the door. It was my neighbor, the good one who helped out so much when I got robbed. Anyway, he was going through the neighborhood getting sign-ups for the Neighborhood Watch. I told him I would, months ago so I did so. I told him was considering selling the house. He recommended I wait a couple of years because the price of houses in our area is somewhat depressed just now, but ought to go back up in a couple of years! He guestimated my house is currently worth around $300K, $330K tops. Boogers! I want at around $400K for my house and not that long ago I could have gotten it! Ok, truth to be told, the news on the local real estate prices was a bit of a relief as it gives me breathing space to get my house ready for sale, though mind, it’s in pretty damn good shape now. I won't be selling my house until the market creeps back up again. As soon as I locked the door and headed back into the kitchen I dropped a plate, sending shards of crockery everywhere. Then I spilled some coffee all over a counter.
Yep. Lots of things on my mind.
Sunday, August 13, 2006
During my last night with Barb in Monterey on August 9th, I was crabby because the wireless Internet connection was fagging out for the third day in a row and I was a tad crabby. Ok, I was a vicious, blood-sucking harpy bitch; happy? Anyway, I decided a bit of spotted dick would be a lovely way to end my day.
So I heated up the pudding and added about a ¼ of some raw blueberries. Then I warmed up about an ounce of Grand Marnier, turned out the lights, and with great flourish, lit my Spotted Dick (you there, STOP giggling!).
So, I poured on some more Grand Marnier and again tried to light the Dick and the blueberries.
Again; nothing happened. Damn!
So again I added another dousing of Grand Marnier to the Dick. Nothing happened. I rationalized that perhaps the microwaving of the liqueur had burned off the alcohol.
By this time Barbara, who had been reading, wanted the lights back on. I refused and again tried to light the Dick, this time dropping the lit match down my nightgown gaining the effect, not of flaming Spotted Dick, but flaming tit, which as far a I know may be a British delicacy, but you aren’t about to find it in any cooking books.
‘Add some more Grand Marnier!’ said Barb, wanting to get back to reading her Oprah magazine. I liberally poured some more on the Dick and the raw blueberries, which by now was in serious need of a life preserver.
I held the match to the Dick – WOOOF - the Dick went up in blue flames!
‘Oh’, suggested Barbara, ‘maybe you didn’t get the thing lighted well enough.’
No shite! The flames burned on and on. I raced for my camera to record the event and got the shot lined up, sure the flames would burn out before I was ready, then remembered there was no battery in the camera so I raced off to fetch it, which sent Barbara and me into fits of laughing hysteria.
Some five minutes, and several photos later, the Dick was still in flames! I guess Barb was right, I hadn’t quite gotten the liquor lit and bowl was heating up. I considered sending the bowl, Dick, berries and all, off to make an eternal flame for James. I know he could have appreciated all the Freudian connotations of an eternally flaming Spotted Dick.
Lo! Eventually the flames went out and I had my dessert. No surprises the raw blueberries were now nicely boiled and quite yummy.
The 'potato' in the dish surrounded by raw blueberries is the Spotted Dick, photographed here with the lights on.
Here is the Spotted Dick photographed modestly; lights out, out of focus, but with flames blazing on and on and on an the blueberries cooked to a tee!
Saturday, August 12, 2006
‘No way I can live in a house that tiny! Now it would be different if it was a guest house I could see it being pretty neat…’
The horribly undersized, rough house transmogrified into a eensie sweet, adorable cottage and now it looked rather good! The previous day Barbara and I had been pleasantly surprised by some beautiful and spacious modular homes. The homes seemed well made and they are spanking new and made to order (hardwood floors for Claire instead of creepy, dust gathering nasty rugs). I have no intention of retiring to a money-pit sort of house.
We got really excited about the idea of me purchasing Keven’s property, plopping a new modular unit on it and using the house there as my office and craft space and a guest cottage. The tax implications alone are delightful! The garage is humongous and could be used to store hay and park a car and a horse trailer.
|A view of the garage (my future tack room, hay storage & two car garage). The peaked roof in the background is the cottage, which is a separate building Note potential future feathered neighbor, taking her 13 babies for a stroll.|
The only necessity then would be for me to put in a corral. Hey! Just dawned on me Keven’s incubator room could do well as a tack room for saddles and such.
So when we got to Fort Brag I put in a call to Keven asking him to find out if the zoning would allow for a second home on an acre property. If the zoning allows for say, only an 800 square foot granny unit, we could have Keven lop off the little back rooms off the main house.
Anyway, that is where my mind is just now; Crescent City and retirement.
Friday, August 11, 2006
Our time in
We woke reluctantly at the Crescent Beach Motel which is where I always stay when I'm there - I can fall asleep there to the sound of the surf and wake up for a peek out the window at the beach.
The property is slightly sloped at the foot of redwood forest and on a back road, but still only about a 15 minute drive – tops - out of
The twee house on Keven's property - includes a humongous garage and enough room for a horse corral and tack room (which astoundingly enough I imagine building for myself - HA!)
When the sea life thinned out I went for a short walk and discovered Shanties that are literally straight out of Cannery Row’s history. It is hard to believe only three shanties were preserved but at least there is some preservation in progress! The interiors are filled with authentic dour depression era furnishings.
Cannery Row Shanties
Inside one of the Shanties
Feck. My hair really needs some major work done on it.
Now I will go back to yesterday's post and try to get the photos uploaded.
Feck, feck, feck!
Am still on vacation in Fort Brag; swearing in off-isles Irish feels good.
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
The Conference is over and done already. I drove the 3.5 hours south to Monterey on July 31, checked into the Portola Plaza Hotel & the conference began the following morning. Talk about your fancy venue; the Portola is directly adjacent to the Monterey Museum & 2 skips from the renowned Fisherman’s Wharf. The conference was the best I’ve ever attended and I’ve been to loads of conferences around the state. I might add this wasn’t even my first Monterey Conference.
The highlights of the conference for me were not strictly work related. There was a pair of Saker Falcons present with their falconer. I loved the regal and adorable little raptors and admired their fancy headgear.
I told the falconers they must read The Goshawk by T.H. White, who wrote my favourite book, The Once and Future King . It was turned into Camelot and Disney’s the Sword in the Stone. I think there are at least another half dozen other books in the main tome. One of the falconers said he’d read the Sword in the Stone which unlike the Disney version did not have young King Arthur turned into a sparrow by Merlyn the Magician, but ‘the Wart’ was actually turned into a Merlyn Hawk and was put into the Mews for the night where he listened to the wise talk of the other noble birds; the Peregrine, the Hobbies, Goshawks, and the Sparrow Hawks.
The following day I took some time to visit the Monterey State Museum which was small but interesting, at least in that its building were originals dating back to the turn of the century when California was still a part of Mexico.
I also took a long walk along the Fisherman’s Wharf. I’ve been there several times before for dining and more notably for Pelagic birding and Whale watching trips to the deep waters off Monterey.
The second floor of the Monterey Museum has a nice collection of artifacts, regalia and baskets from various North American tribes. Here is a porcupine quill beaded parfletch bag, used by plains Indians for carrying goods around.
I must say there seemed to be end of things to do in Monterey. I took this picture at the Farmer’s Market which was one largest I’ve ever seen in California.
Ah! At last I’ve caught up with a small bit of my busy August. More tomorrow.