Posted tagged ‘sleeping in’

“How did it get so late so soon?”

November 6, 2017

By now you’re probably wondering what happened to me. Well, it is nothing catastrophic. First, I made up for my lack of sleep the other night by sleeping this morning until 11:30. I decided to stick to my usual routine and read the papers. After I’d read one, my irrigation guy came and wanted to shut down the system as well as my outside shower. I turned on lights and opened doors then got back to my second paper and another cup of coffee. It was nearing two when I finished. I turned my computer on, checked my mail then tried to open WordPress. It wouldn’t open. I shut down Safari but that did nothing. I opened Chrome but still couldn’t get WordPress to load. I tried sneaking into WordPress when viewing another blog, but I couldn’t get any blogs to load. My cheeks hurt from grinding my teeth so I turned off my computer and turned on the television. TCM is having a festival of Falcon movies. I am happy.

When I went to get the papers, I was surprised by how warm the day is. It’s in the mid-60’s, more like late September than November. It was sunny then but now it’s getting dark and cloudy. Rain is forecast for later this afternoon.

When I was watching The Falcon and The Coeds, I recognized a scene from The Lone Ranger. Tom Conway, the Falcon, was riding a horse in the hills trying to catch whoever shot at him. He rode up hill between rock formations. Right away I recognized it as a scene from the Lone Ranger where Silver rears, and we hear the narrator say High Ho Silver Away. I always thought the opening of The Lone Ranger was one of the best. There he is riding Silver at top speed and shooting as he rides all to the March of the Swiss Soldiers, the finale of Gioachino Rossini’s Willian Tell’s Overture which I always thought was just The Lone Ranger’s introduction.

This is going to be a slow week. The only entry on my dance card is dinner with friends on Wednesday. I haven’t any errands though I expect we’ll do a dump run toward the end of the week. My social life seems to be winterizing early.

“There’s no such thing as a vote that doesn’t matter.”

October 21, 2016

This morning I slept late. It was cozy under the warm comforter. The dog sensing I was awake stood up. I just stayed in bed. Fern joined us. I finally decided to get up. It was almost nine. I got downstairs, let Gracie outside, made coffee and then fetched my newspapers. The street was wet on the sides so it must have rained last night. I missed it.

The forecast is for rain today, and I thought it was going to rain earlier when the sun disappeared and dark clouds took over the sky. Since then the sun has reappeared, but it doesn’t look all that comfortable surrounded as it is by clouds. It may yet rain.

Okay, I have a confession to make. I have become an MSNBC junkie. When I was in Ghana, I saw the first debate. I read all the comments, all the fallout, and had a few laughs. I also got irritated, majorly irritated. My friend Bill advised me not to read anymore, but I couldn’t stop. I was in the grip of this horrific campaign. Now it is worse. I watched the last two debates and the Al Smith dinner last night. I watched the fact checker after the last debate and saw how many Pinocchios Mr. Trump received. Even now, I have MSNBC in the background. I’m beginning to  feel like a gawker.

I have always voted. I believe it is the responsibility of every citizen who is of age. My first election was 1968. I had to wait back then until I was twenty-one. My candidate did not win. When I was in Ghana, I got an absentee ballot, but it arrived too late. The election was already over. I sent it in anyway, by air mail.

My town still uses paper and pen ballots. For the first time, I will be able to vote early, starting next week. I check in by my address at a table where two women sit. Every election it is the same two women. We always say hi. I go behind the curtain and vote then  put my ballot in the box. I usually know the police officer standing beside the box. I then go to a different table to check out by street address. Two women sit at that table as well. We usually have a bit if a chit chat then I’m done. I proudly put my I voted sticker on my shirt.

“There was nothing like a Saturday – unless it was the Saturday leading up to the last week of school and into summer vacation. That of course was all the Saturdays of your life rolled into one big shiny ball.”

June 11, 2016

Saturday for my whole life has been the best day. When I was a kid, Saturday was our day to roam the town or to see a movie or to sit and watch Creature Double Feature on TV. Those were the days of black and white movies from the 50’s with cheesy special effects. We didn’t care. We loved those old B movies, and even now, I’ll watch them. I’m never critical. They are fun to watch. Some Saturdays we were out all day rambling. We’d pack a sandwich and some cookies in a brown paper bag knowing we’d be gone most of the day. We followed the railroad tracks, walked to the zoo or watched the dairy cows. We looked in the windows uptown and into the fire station as we walked by it. On warm days the firemen sat on wooden chairs right outside the bays where the fire engines were. We’d walk through the school yard empty of kids. We’d get home in the late afternoon. The winter meant the matinee. I don’t remember ever caring what the movie was. I remember standing in front of the glass display case trying to decide how to spend my nickel. The candy had to be tasty but more importantly, it had to be long lasting. I think my brother chose candy by its projectile possibilities.

When I was a teenager, Saturdays meant sleeping in. During the day I’d hang around or meet up with friends. I remember roaming around Harvard Square, going to the museum and checking out stores. Back then Harvard Square was unique and the stores were not chain stores. I remember we ate at the Wursthouse a few times. I haven’t been to Harvard Square in years except to drive though to somewhere else. It has lost its identity. It is the same as anywhere. On Saturday nights we’d sometimes go bowling. I was never a good bowler, but it was fun.

Saturday nights in college were party nights. Some of my memories are still hazy. We’d find a spot, park the car and party. Those were the days of cheap wine.

In Ghana, Saturday usually meant going to town to shop in the market or at the small kiosks which sold margarine and instant coffee in tins. I’d carry my woven bag and fill it with onions, tomatoes and eggs. Once I found a small watermelon my tomato lady had saved for me to buy. I never saw another one.

When I was back home, Saturday still meant sleeping-in and food shopping, but at a supermarket with too many choices. I’ve always hated food shopping and shlepping in the bags.

Today I woke up at 8. I had two cups of coffee and two pieces of Scali bread toast. I have no plans at all for the day. I’m thinking it is finalize the deck day. I’ll put down the rug, clean the chairs, water the plants, start the fountain and then ceremoniously bring the Travelocity Gnome and the plastic flamingo to their summer homes. They inaugurate deck season every year.

“If a doctor treats your cold, it will go away in fourteen days. If you leave it alone, it will go away in two weeks.

March 10, 2016

My mood and the day are too similar to ignore. It rained earlier. The ground is still wet. The sky is a light grey. My mood is just a bit darker. I woke up very late and did not want to get out of bed. Gracie and Fern adjusted their respective positions on the bed, and we all went back to sleep. I had to force myself to get up. Two cups of coffee are just not enough today.

My house is clean. Roseana and Lee came yesterday. Dump day is tomorrow. I checked and the bird feeders still have seeds though I did have to replace the suet in both of those feeders. The clothes are all washed. There are no dirty dishes. I got books at the library yesterday. I finished the newspaper’s crossword puzzle. As all of this sounds like paradise, why the mood?

My voice is raspy. I have a headache. I am exhausted (spell check came up with a better word: exhumed) for no reason. All I can think of is maybe the cold I avoided knows spring is upon us and wants to get me before winter takes its final bow. This makes me unhappy. It also makes me grumpy.

I figure to loll in bed, take whatever medication I have and read the day away. That actually sounds inviting. The only thing missing is the maid and a bell by my bed to summon her.

This will last a day or two as I’m not coughing or blowing my nose. On the measurement of colds, something I just made up, I’m about a 3 or a 4 out of 10. If I were a little kid, my mother would have sent me to school: two symptoms do not a cold make.

The worst part of a kid’s cold is a runny nose. I hated having a runny nose. My mother used to stuff my pockets with Kleenex. That left a dilemma. Where do I put the used Kleenex? I couldn’t keep getting up from my desk to put them in the trash so I’d stash them in my school bag or the pocket of my sweater if I happened to be wearing one. Nothing is worse than a used Kleenex.

My mother usually had a Kleenex or two in her handbag. The problems were the Kleenex was a crumbled mess, often had lipstick on it and brown bits of tobacco from my mother’s cigarette package clung to it. I had no choice but to use that Kleenex. It was always a mystery to me why my mother didn’t want it back. To me, it sort of fit right into her bag.

“My first car was a motorcycle.”

July 23, 2015

Today is lovely with very little humidity and a cooling breeze. I slept in until nearly 10 o’clock. Last night I was tired so I went to bed early (for me) but was still awake at 3. To pass the time I watched a movie on my iPad, A Foreign Field. I kept thinking I’d finish it in the morning, but I watched it through to the end.

A flicker, a bird I haven’t seen in a long while, and a huge woodpecker were the stars this morning at the bird feeders. The usual complement of birds also dropped by, but they, especially the chickadee, looked tiny compared to the flicker. The red spawn hasn’t been by in a long while. I think it has to do with the spawn having gotten caught a few times inside the wire feeder while the full brunt of the jet spray of the nozzle was directed at it. The spawn just couldn’t escape fast enough to avoid the spray.

In Ghana, during my second year, Peace Corps relaxed its rules and allowed us to buy motorcycles. I bought a small motorcycle, a Honda 90. It was designed for modesty, with no middle bar, perfect for me as I had to wear dresses all the time. I learned the gears and the brake when I bought the moto, as it is called it in Ghana, and then rode it over 100 miles from Tamale to Bolgatanga. It was exhilarating. I loved the road and the wind on my face. The bugs were not so welcome. I learned to be exhilarated without smiling. A few inhaled bugs and a choke or two taught me that lesson. I rode along singing out loud to pass the time. I figure a few villagers told stories later about the crazy baturia (white woman) on the moto screeching as she rode.

The road home was a good one, paved all the way. It was called the road to Bolga and it went straight there so I never worried about getting lost. The ride was a long one so I stopped to stretch my legs and once I bought a warm coke at a store along the road. Kids from villages beside the road followed a bit and waved. I was even comfortable enough driving by then to wave back. When I got to the school gate, I honked so the gateman would let me in. He smiled a toothless grin and pointed to my bike. I smiled back and nodded.

I would love to have another motorcycle, but I dare not given how often I bang my leg or fall up or down stairs. Traffic here goes far too fast and hugging the sides of the road is a recipe for disaster. I’m liable to hit a giant rock or branch or have something from the sky fall directly on my head, such is my luck.

“There’s something about the sound of a train that’s very romantic and nostalgic and hopeful.”

April 25, 2015

The house was cold this morning. I really didn’t want to get out of bed and neither did Gracie. She stood up, shook, then settled back down beside me, leaning against me. She’s into warmth. It was late, 9:20, so I dragged myself downstairs to begin the day.

My mother never woke us up on the weekends or in the summer. The older we got, the longer we slept in, but when we were young, we wanted the whole day. On summer Saturdays we’d get dressed, bolt down our cereals then take off, sometimes on our bikes and sometimes on foot. We’d cut through the woods to get to the horses in the field on Green Street. The house on the property was red, large and old. It was one of those square houses I found out much later were called federal. We’d stand by the fence, and the horses would come over and we’d pat them. My brother and I would try to feed them grass but they weren’t interested. A couple of times we climbed the fence hoping to jump on the horses and ride them. They’d take off as soon as we got close which was a good thing. I’m sure riding bareback would have lasted about a minute or two before I hit the ground.

Once in a while we’d alter our walking route and head for a different side of town, the area where the box factory, the railroad station and the red store were. Back then my town had a lot of factories for a small town: the Jones Shoe factory up town and two other factories which make chemicals, both by the railroad tracks. Those two buildings were brick, not common for buildings where I lived. Across the front of one was a black sign, but I don’t remember the name of the company though I passed it more times than I can remember because that part of the tracks was a shortcut home. All the factories were still active when I was a kid. One of my friend’s mothers worked in the shoe factory, and I remember watching the trains crossing the main road on their way to the chemical factories.

I used to love walking those tracks, none of which remain. Even now I always stop and watch trains. There is something about them which grabs my imagination.

“A wild and crazy weekend involves sitting on the front porch, smoking a cigar, reading a book.”

October 3, 2014

This morning was one of those put a mirror under her nose to see if she is still breathing mornings. I didn’t wake up until ten. My guess is it was all the errands from yesterday, the hauling in of the packages, the loads of wash with the accompanying up and down two flights of stairs and the changing of my bed. My back is no longer fit for days like yesterday. On my dance card today is switching out the screens and storm doors.

The day is dreary. It may even rain again later. I turned on the heat this morning for a short while to get rid of the dampness. The house is cozy now. The animals are in here with me while they take their morning naps. All three are quite comfortable: two are on the couch and one is on the afghan. I should live their lives.

Earlier I sprayed the red spawn. He didn’t hear me coming so he took the full brunt of the spray. He was shocked and immediately leapt, still dripping I suspect, from the deck rail to one tree then another until he alit on the big pine branch and began castigating me. He was chirping and chattering and waving his tail in indignation all the while looking right at me. He has to go. He best be packing his little bag for the move.

When I was a kid, I seldom had plans for the weekends. If the movie was good, I’d head to the matinee. If not, I might ride my bike or roller skate or just walk the tracks. Life was filled with spontaneity. Sunday was church and the family dinner but the rest of the day was mine. Sometimes the weather determined what we did. Rain in the summer was never a deterrent to playing outside, but in the winter it was far too cold to get wet. I always thought winter rain was a waste of water. It should always have been snow.

I don’t make too many weekend plans. I watch the Amazing Race with my friends, one of our traditions, and that’s it. I am back to spontaneity and maybe a bit of inertia. I’m liking my life.

“As they say on my own Cape Cod, a rising tide lifts all the boats”

May 24, 2014

It is really late, I know, but I slept in. It was a mirror under the nose to make sure I was still alive type morning. It was nearly eleven before I got out of bed. Excuses? I need none. I do have a few things I could do but nothing of any importance, and I am a bit afraid to go out as the traffic to get on the cape was backed up for miles so the roads will be heavy with cars. I’m going to practice all my traffic curses to get ready for the season.

When I was a kid, we never came to the cape. We went to local beaches in Gloucester or we went north to Maine or New Hampshire. I was in high school before I first came down here, and it wasn’t with the family. It was with the drill team to march in a parade in Hyannis. We parked on a side street at the northern end of Hyannis. It was right across from what would become my father’s office in a couple of years. I noticed it was the Hood plant, but it didn’t make a big impression. Had I been a soothsayer, I’d know that plant meant moving and leaving all the friends with whom I was spending the day. After we marched, we spent the rest of the day at a beach. I think it was Scusset Beach right on the canal. It was a fun day.

When I first moved down here, I hated it. It was my first time in a public school, I didn’t know a soul and the guidance counselor had persuaded me to take Latin 4. Even though I had spent all of my school years in a Catholic school my parents made me go to CCD at the church which happened to be across the street. My brother also had to go. The class met in the kitchen of the church hall as all the other spaces were taken. We convinced the priest teaching the class that my brother and I were twins so he’d only have to suffer through one year of CCD. It was an unruly group and the poor priest was at wits end. Eventually we took pity and quieted down. I have no idea what we learned, if anything.

My parents decided that my brother and I didn’t really like them all that much. When we first moved down here, I went to visit my friends at home at least one weekend a month and more if I could scrounge up the money, but over time I made friends and came to love the cape. When I was in the Peace Corps, my parents moved off cape back to the town where I’d grown up. They thought I’d probably join them, but when I finished my years in Ghana, I came home to Cape Cod.

“Always end the name of your child with a vowel, so that when you yell the name will carry.”

March 3, 2014

It was a put a mirror under her nose to see if she is breathing sort of morning. I woke up at 8 and decided I didn’t want to get up so I went right back to bed. Around 10:30 I finally got up, had time for one cup of coffee and one newspaper then got dressed as Gracie had her senior dog check-up at noon. She loves going to the vets. She is so active the vet said without the gray around her muzzle she would have guessed Gracie was far younger than eight. Because Gracie gets a little excited, they take her out back for her shots, blood drawing and nail cutting. Strangely enough, she is quiet while everything is being done to her. She weighs exactly the same as she did 6 months ago during her last senior dog physical. The vet said she seems great. Right now she is sleeping on the couch and resting from her ordeal.

When I was a kid, we had a boxer named Duke. He never had yearly check-ups. I think he only got rabies shots, but I can’t attest to that as I don’t remember. I’m just assuming. After Old Yeller I think all the dogs got rabies shots. Duke was a fighter. During one fight, a massive dog tore Duke around the neck. My dad said time would heal it. My mother sneaked Duke to the vets where he got shots and the wound taken care of. In those days my dad was away all week as he had been transferred, and we were waiting for school to end before we moved. He was home only on weekends. When he saw Duke and how well the wound was healing, he made mention of I told you so to anyone who would listen. We had been sworn to secrecy so we just nodded and let him think he had been right.

We lived by the motto that what my father didn’t know wouldn’t hurt him. My mother was usually a co-conspirator. We could tell her anything, and she’d pick and choose what to tell my father. It made life so much easier. We also learned how to look repentant when he yelled. Most times we were just blocking him out and nodding our heads as he yelled at us for whatever, but we always looked sorry and a bit sheepish. The four of us perfected that look. He never figured it out.

“Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies!”

December 10, 2013

It was the sleep of the dead. I might as well have been in a sarcophagus. I woke up at 8 as I had a meeting at 9, got a call making sure I knew of the meeting and ended up not going. I was just so tired I went back to bed and woke up at noon to a winter wonderland, well not quite a wonderland but it is snowing. The snowflakes are huge and wet so I doubt the storm has much staying power. I was going to get my tree today, but I’ll wait for a drier day. I will do some decorating later and tonight some wrapping. It’s time for Christmas at my house.

When I was around three Santa came to our house. I remember peeking out at him from my parent’s bedroom. He was sitting on the couch waiting for me. I walked over, sat on his lap and told him what I wanted for Christmas. My brother, a year younger than I, was too afraid and never left the bedroom. I have a picture of me with Santa from that day. My face is filled with wonder, and I am staring open-mouthed at Santa right there in my own house.

When my nephew was young, I sent my sister a Christmas report card for him. It had all sorts of good little boy and good little girl behaviors like puts toys away, eats vegetables, listens, goes to bed when asked-all the stuff kids usually balk at doing. There was a column next to each behavior where a gold or black star was placed. On Christmas Eve, the report card was to be left under the tree for Santa so he would know how good a boy my nephew had been. Ryan, my nephew, took that card to heart. If he was bad, my sister would put up a black star, and Ryan would cry and swear to be good if she’d just take the star off. She usually gave him an ultimatum he had to follow if he wanted the star removed. He usually did and the black star was no more. Santa always had such power for goodness during Christmas.