Sunday, December 30, 2012

Let's see...snow...work, and oh yeah the birthday party.

So it's about 8:20 PM ON Saturday night. This might turn out to be a long rambling post. I know I'm not going to finish it tonight. I have what I'd like to write about in my head but right now it's not very coherent and being coherent is a good thing. I'll just start with what's going on at this moment. It's snowing. There are people who have lived here all their lives but there still stunned when they hear it's going to snow.
"Snow! Here in New England!"
 The forecast for this area is 4 to 8 inches. Still people run out and buy extra food. It will never change. It was a hectic day. I'm just glad I no longer work in the seafood department. Lobsters were on sale for $4.99 lb. I have awful memories of lobster sales past when I used to work strictly seafood. People being picky about a lobster that weighs and ounce less than another. When you're talking an ounce that could be shell and water. There's no bonanza of meat in a 16th of a pound. Soft shell vs. hard shell. I saw a guy at 8:10 in the morning ordering 4 lobsters steamed. He was going to have them for breakfast. That's a little too rich for my blood. Lobsters are tasty, even tastier when dipped in butter but it's the fact that they are expensive that gives then this cache'. You eat crabs basically the same way though they taste a bit different but they are less expensive and there is no hysteria over them. Still I really didn't have to deal with that.
I did have a guy ask me for some mosquito (mesquite smoked) turkey. today. I wanted to tell him that it was a seasonal item that you usually see in the Spring.
Every time things got a bit bogged down at work one of my           co- workers would show us this picture on his phone. It made me laugh every time.


Who knew that NASA had a sloth astronaut (slothtronauts) training program? He seems to be a pleasant and amiable chap and he cheered us up when needed.

I mentioned in the last blog about a birthday party I went to on December 12. It was the birthday of my friend Earle's, wife, Phylis, also my friend. What an awkward sentence. Earle had rented a room in a small local Italian restaurant. Everything was gratis, free. Food and drink. When Arlene and I walked in we were offered beer, wine or a shot of something or other. We settled for a glass of wine. Apart from Earle and Phylis I didn't know anyone there as they were all friends of Phylis and Arlene had never met Earle and Phylis. Everybody was quite chatty and soon the little tidbits of food was circulated among the crowd. It was a small room and there were at 30 people. The food itself was alright but I wouldn't write home about it. Little hunks of fried fresh mozzarella with some kind of batter. For all I know they came frozen out of a package and fried. Mozzarella has a very mild almost none existent flavor. It's wonderful when used in conjunction with an antipasto with roasted peppers, marinated asparagus spears, calamata olives, marinated artichoke hearts and prosciutto and the bread of course. This fried mozzarella was plain dull. By the time we actually sat down to eat, I had had two glasses of wine in about an hour. I ate something that night but it was so nondescript as to even register a memory.

At this point in the evening I was on my third glass of wine. The food might not have been what I would have expected from a supposedly good Italian restaurant but the conversation was good. Although I have no idea what was talked about. From this point on I remember sitting there chatting with people and having a perpetual full glass of wine but I have no memory of being asked for a refill. I just continued to drink. By 10 pm the room emptied out fairly quickly. Soon the only people left were Earle and Phylis, Arlene and myself. I knew I was a bit tipsy but I felt good until I tried to stand up. I wasn't tipsy I was drunk. I was fortunate to have my friend there because apparently Arlene was feeling no pain either so she couldn't drive home and she lives next door. Did I mention that's very convenient? I sort of remember trying to put my jacket on and I am told that I had a slight accident while trying to leave. I bumped into a small table with decorative bottles of olive oil and vinegar. Knocked them to the floor while letting out a resounding "whoops". I do remember standing outside for a few minutes slapping Earle on the arm proclaiming, "You're driving me home buddy!" They formed a plan. Earle would drive Arlene, conveniently next door, and I home and Phylis would meet him there. Fortunately I only live in the next city over. Earle and Arlene got into the front as I poured myself into the back seat. I was having trouble with the seat belt and they told to be quiet and lie down. Home 10 minutes later we said our goodbyes as the cold night air was reviving me enough to make putting the key into the lock on the door a bit easier. I can't say I woke up singing 'Zippity Do Dah" but considering I really don't know how much I actually consumed it was a fair morning. All I remember was the my glass was always full and that every time the waitress came by offering more wine, I have been told my answer was always a resounding, "Sure!" 
OK here come all the disclaimers. I am not a big drinker. I do like wine, preferably, a dry wine and I have been known to have a couple of Sam Adams lager every once in a while but I don't have a large capacity for alcohol and that's just as well. I called Phylis and Earle the next day, to apologise for my behavior and they were great about it. They said I was very entertaining and apparently a happy drunk. Earle warned me that I was getting out of hand with this getting drunk every 22 years or so.

Alrighty then, I am finishing this blog on Sunday morning at about 8:45. We did get snow overnight. Not much really, only about 3 or 4 inches. My landlords and I have already been out. All shoveling and car cleaning duties have been performed. I went out to get some gas and the roads are in good shape. It was very pleasant driving around with little or no traffic. Later today it's out for lunch, then Arlene and I will settle in to watch the Patriots at about 4:30. What a run the local Boston teams have been on the last 12 years. 3 Super Bowl titles, 5 Super Bowl appearances, 2 World series wins, A Stanley Cup in Hockey and an NBA Championship. We are spoiled rotten sports wise and otherwise. It's not a cheap place to live but for many years I have taken for granted all that surrounds me but not any more. Sure the traffic stinks, and the drivers are very aggressive and it's very crowded. There are many people crammed in a small area but it's my home and I love it. Even though I don't live in Boston proper, it's only 5 miles away and it has so much to offer.

Well that wraps up this long winded, two days in the making blog entry. It's back to reality as laundry and other assorted household chores await. 9:11 in the morning. Not bad. The whole day is still ahead of me.

I'm outta here.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Where to start? Well firstly I hope everyone enjoyed their holiday. I surprisingly enjoyed one of the best Christmas Eve's in many years. At first it looked like my family was going to splinter off to other gatherings. That was certainly OK by me. I had a couple of places to go or I would have been fine staying home. An evening with out human contact is not necessarily a bad thing. Especially after a day when it appeared they were handing out free samples of Stupid Pills at the front door.

"Sir! Would you care to try a  Stupid Pill?"
"Well I don't know. I, ah..."
"I'll bet you're already taking them!"

I can't imagine what it must be like working in a department store this time of year. I really am not going to go on railing against humanity. All I really mean a simple quiet evening is not a bad thing every now and then.

My sister is in the middle of buying a house. She's understandably a little on the grumpy side thanks to the bank and the state. I called to say hello and she quickly informed me that she was not planning any Christmas eve or day dinner. She was too busy and tired to do anything but to "stop by if you want to." Long story short, my other sister showed up so along with my two sisters and brother in law we ended up ordering Chinese food and did quite a bit of laughing and a bit of drinking. Of course it isn't real Chinese food. It is Americanized. I don't think Chinese people are eating Crab Rangoon. And I was hard pressed to find much crab meat in it. But none of that mattered, it was wonderful to have a no pressure evening.

Then of course we come to work. The chain I work for changes it's sale cycle/ad change every Friday. On this day we receive new signs and shelf tags. Shelf tags are the little tags on the front of a grocery shelf telling you what the item is, a scan bar, and a bunch of numbers. Prices change, tags change. It's Friday and I'm out checking shelf tags. I come across this one. Has anybody ever heard of this particular item?


You have to wonder what BAFF is and why does it have to be squishy? Is that a sign of ripeness? Maybe we northerners prefer our baff squishy where as the southerners prefer a firmer baff? Is it a cheese or some kind of cleaning item? "Look how easy the Squishy Baff cleans up that disgusting mess!" 
We do know that buying one will cost you $15.99. You could be buying something to eat or something to clean your toilet with. I'm just trying to stay in the holiday spirit here. 

Despite all the lunacy above, my actual holiday was quite nice. On Christmas night I went to my lady friend's house. I feel silly saying "my girlfriend" at my age. Of course that could change once I get off my high horse. There. I'm down.
She lives next door. It's very convenient! We had a lovely meal along with her daughters. It was all a very pleasant night. It began on a humorous note. Arlene lives in a rather large "3 decker" or 3 family house. It's about 110 years old. It's been in her family for a good chunk of that time. There are 5 good sized rooms on each floor. Arlene lives on the 3rd floor. She has a little dog. A "min pin" or miniature doberman pincer. It's a nice little dog but it's a bundle neurosis . Any little thing can set off a yipping frenzy. I do find it amazing that he can tell tell the difference between when I stand up to go into another room, from when I stand up to go home. I'm guessing Bruno has abandonment issues.  

So I walk up the front porch stairs and press the door bell for the third floor. Keep in mind that the people living on the second floor have two dogs and the people on the first floor have one as well. 
"Ding dong"
"YIP! YIP YIP YIP..."! etc. What is he thinking? 
"Someones leaving! Someones coming! Where are you going?! Don't leave me! I saw a leaf! Where's my food! 
This racket sets the two dogs on the second floor off. They're mid sized dogs with howls and deeper barks! And then on cue dog #3 goes off! All this racket over nothing. It was funny though.

I am back to work and it is not pretty. I could retire next year at this time and might just do that. I would like to take some time off in the next few months and hopefully I will be able to. One thing I am definitely going to do is head back to Martha's Vineyard in May or June. I am so lucky to have access to a place that's not all that far away, yet is surrounded by ocean and pretty peaceful (in the off seasons anyway) yet not all that different than where I live. It's good for the soul and also considerably cheaper in the off season.

I do have another incident to report but I think I'll save it for the next blog which should be in a couple of days. All I'll say about it is that it happened on December 12 at a friends birthday party in a restaurant. It was all free. The food and the wine flowed...

I'm outta here.
  
        

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas to my friends

Yes I know I have not been around but that doesn't mean I haven't thought of my friends here on Blogger. Life has a way of getting complicated very quickly and it has. There are factors and reasons as to why I haven't been around. I won't go into them but I will say overall I'm fine but time and energy have been in short supply as of late. The holidays have something to do with it at least in the last couple of months but I would be remiss if I didn't make the effort to poke my head into the blogging world to wish my wonderful friends here a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays or whatever may be appropriate at this time of year to everyone. I thank you for sticking with me and am grateful to have met you. Hopefully the new year will be a little less complicated and I can get back to my usual nonesense on a more regular basis here on Blogger.

Thank You All!
Paul

Monday, December 3, 2012

My thanks to everyone...

...and especially to Beth for the birthday wishes. Beth you see sent me a birthday card. It sat in my mailbox overnight because when I came home from work I neglected to check it. I checked it on my way out the next morning and discovered this card in the mail. I knew it was a birthday card but I didn't recognise the name or the address. I did know someone named Beth in New Hampshire around 1971 or '72 but then we lost track of each other. Had she married and moved and suddenly thought of me all these years later? Why? It's not like we had a romance. We were just friends that I met through a mutual friend who attended art school with her in Boston. Throughout the day the mystery popped into my brain now and again. Is this Beth from New Hampshire? I pulled into the drive way after work, this time checking my mail box. Just a bill from the gas company. Happy Holidays. Where's our money? As I entered my house there was the envelope on the little table by the door from the mysterious Beth. I picked it up and suddenly, while looking at the postal stamp, light dawned on Marblehead. It was Beth from Blogger! I had never received anything through the mail from a fellow blogger. So thanks everyone for the birthday wishes especially you Beth! That was very sweet.

These are busy days. In fact it's been a busy year. Work has been a strain. I survived a layoff last month. 700 other people weren't so lucky. It's been a hectic and convoluted 13 years since my original company was sold to the parent company of another old New England supermarket chain owned by and English Corporation named Sainsbury. My original company was a local company that had been around since 1915 and we were the Cadillac of the supermarkets around here. We had many owners since the original family sold out in 1964 to the Jewel Corporation out of Chicago. Through the next several owners, the local company was still run by the same people so at store level nothing really changed until Sainsbury, an English Corporation, bought us and stuck us on the side of their American holdings in New England. This company can trace it's origins back to the 1880's. Now they were failing. I suppose they thought adding us to them would add revenue since our 60 stores were mostly in the metropolitan Boston area where there are about 4.5 million people, not scattered throughout New England. I guess it seemed like a good idea. From the beginning we were told to lower our standards and they were right. We were THE upscale market in Eastern Ma. and a couple of other New England states with many food industry firsts to their credit including cellophane wrapped meats, plastic mesh bags for oranges, in store cooked foods plus a few others. OK it's not like curing cancer, but they were still firsts. We were the best paid with the best benefits. After 5 years I had four weeks vacation. Since 1999 it's been a confusing array of poorly thought out ideas. We were no longer being run with people who had worked their way up through the stores but by people with just business degrees. Their knowledge on how the retail food business operates on the ground floor  was sadly lacking. If you want to buy roast beef you have to pick from six different brands. All this does is confuse the customer. If they say, "Give me the one on sale." You then have to ask them which one because they will put three on sale. A simple task has become tedious. Then about eight years ago they began changing the name of all my original company stores, to the other name, then a couple of years later they started changing them back because the name had been established in the area for so long and there was "name recognition". Well pardon my French, but no shit Sherlock! It took all those degree carrying baboons about eight years to realise this. Can you get a degree in common sense? It does seem to be a common thread in a lot businesses these days.

We are presently owned by another sad sack corporation in Minnesota named SuperValu. They are neither super nor a value. Their two highest grossing locations in the whole U.S. are our two original stores located in Downtown Boston and next door Cambridge. I don't say that to brag I say that because they want to sell us. How sad that you have to sell your two best retail outlets because you helped in killing the reputation of both company names. As far I know two deals have fallen through so far. The last purposed deal involved the laying off of 700 people as part of the deal then, no deal. And yet despite all this I still have a job for which I am very grateful.

Last Sunday I went to see Lincoln. The movie that is. A great movie! Everything about it, superb. Acting all the way around was top shelf. Daniel Day-Lewis was outstanding as Abraham Lincoln. The rest of the cast was just as good. It is a wonderful film. In other local news. Last week, right near the very Cambridge store I mentioned above they were filming a movie with Leonardo DiCaprio. A friend of mine who works in that store phoned me and said she saw the movie trailers on the street right behind the store and Leonardo was seen riding his bike around Porter Square. I don't know the name of the movie. Maybe I'll change the name of this blog to Entertainment This Afternoon.

My sister has just purchased a house and I of course am happy to help her move. Besides I could be living there someday. Between working odd schedules at work, keeping in touch and socialising with friends when I can, and of course seeing my lady friend (Not a big problem though Honey!),  moving boxes for my sister, it's a busy life. I am off today and I have been a total slob accomplishing nothing but this blog entry and eating and it's been a welcome relief. 

I've gone on long enough. Once again a big thank you to everyone for the happy birthday wishes especially to you Beth. Thank you! That was very sweet of you. I won't forget this!
That's it. I'm outta here.         

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Some silliness on the day before Thanksgiving

This is the video I was trying to post on my last blog. As I said previously I am not making a political statement or taking sides as both parties leave a lot to be desired as far as I'm concerned. However while watching post election program they showed a couple of humorous political ads each party put out about their opponent and the Obama one was kind of lukewarm ( and by the way what makes Luke the authority on levels of heat ) but the Republican one was pretty funny except I thought it was too long. So I downloaded it and cut it down to 10 seconds. I made a silly intro about a year ago and stuck it on the beginning. It's actually about 3 times as long as the actual clip. 
So tomorrow is Thanksgiving. It is easily my favorite holiday. It's about nothing more than being thankful for what you have. That's it. The very first one was held about 50 or so miles from where I sit. Apart from all the possible gluttony there are no major religious ties connected to it. It simply is a day to be thankful for what you have. Getting together with family or friends. The only bad side of Thanksgiving, and this is just a personal opinion, are the major retailers who will open either on the day or as soon as the clock strikes midnight. It's not totally the retailers fault because there are people who will shop. I imagine that the only reason they aren't open on Christmas day is because we spend so much time and money in stores because of Christmas. I imagine that could too change in the future. Anyway you won't find me in any store on Thanksgiving.
So to anyone who reads this, Happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy your friends and family on this special day. It's really the best holiday of all.
Now I have to prepare for work. I have the late shift till 9.
I'm outta here.   


Monday, November 19, 2012

A sad/busy time.

Yeah it's the holidays which are always a busy time. Last week we had a death in the family. My mother's sister , my aunt Tina, passed. She was the last  member of my parents generation, at least in the U.S. I found myself more emotional at her passing than I did at my own parents passing. Maybe because she was the last one of that generation, at least in this country. I believe my father's sisters are still living. One is in Italy and one is in Austrailia. My sister has just purchased a house and will be moving shortly. This has taken up some of my time, not that I mind lending a hand. Besides I could end up living there in the future. Work has been tough. My company is in bad shape. They have eliminated the little pins they give us when we hit an aniversary date. Not that they were anything to write home about. Everybody got the same little pin no matter how many years of service you had. This was no big deal since they were cheap little pins. The only difference was what number the had written on the front. Before my original company was sold to the present company, the anniversary pins got better every five years. They were made of gold ( Don't ask me what kind because I know nothing about gold but I realse they weren't solid gold.) After 10 years they had a little ruby inserted. After 15 years they had a ruby and a small diamond chip and so on down the line. I'm sure these pins weren't real expensive but they were different at every milestone and just looked a lot nicer. Of course the original company is now defunct though the name still exits. I realise that this pin issue is small potatoes when you compare it to the 700 people they laid off last week. I managed to survive that. I thought I would be one of the first to go since I have over 41 years of service. Our vacation set up has been altered along with other things as well. 

November and December are always busy for me. In these two months there are 3 birthdays (My sisters and mine) and two major holidays. This may be the first year that my family will not be getting together for Thanksgiving. Last year was the first year that Thanksgiving was just my sisters, brother in law and myself. The years before my uncle Sam would spend the holidays with us instead of his own 4 daughters though one does live in England. There's a lot of drama going on between my cousins and I guess he just didn't want to deal with all the potential crap that could occur.  He was a lot of fun and the whole day was filled with laughter. He passed in 2011. He was a favorite of my sisters and me. We all miss you uncle Sam.

On the flip side, though I don't intend to get into politics per se and I am not picking sides here, but after the Presidential election, my lady friend and I were watching some post election programs and they showed a few humorous campaign comercials for both sides. The Obama ad was okay but the Republican one had a surprise ending that just cracked us up. I ended up finding it on YouTube. I downloaded it and cut it down from a minute to about 10 seconds. I stuck my own intro on it. It was something I put together last year to use at begining of any video I might come up with. The intro is twice as long as the clip but it was fun to make.


Well it appears that my little video is not uploading. So I will publish without it and try it again later. It could be my computer. It's been running slow lately. So I guess,
I'm outta here.    

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Living about 5 miles north of Boston, we were all watching the storm slowly move up the coast. What happened in New Jersey and New York city could have very well happened up here. Where I live we never lost power though I was ready with a portable light and a couple of flashlights. I did hear sirens all day long and a rather large branch did come down on my street three houses away. It missed all the cars and there are a lot of them, and landed across the street like a barrier.
The wind blew and it rained on and off the whole day. I have to say I did think about going to the ocean to watch the show. Revere Beach is only about 6 or 7 miles east of here but the road along shoreline was already flooded by mid-day.
I'm not sure when this branch fell but it seemed like they removed it rather quickly.
A shot out the window on the front porch.
video
 I also thought about driving to Gloucester. Now that's a good 45 miles away but it's all highway driving and probably take just a little longer than Revere beach because of the awful traffic and screwy road layout. As it turns out I just stayed home though I would like to see the ocean during a severe storm just because it's such a show. Nature on display in all it's fury.
 
There are leaves everywhere. Some trees are still green. Others are muted in color and others are completely bare. Many of them were bare before the storm. It has not been a colorful Fall around here for the second year in a row. The header picture was taken in the Fall of 2009. That was a very good year.
Okeedoke. I'm getting hungry and I am outta here.


Saturday, October 20, 2012

What have I been doing?

I have to admit that for the past month I have been hung up on a computer game. Not a shoot 'em up or go for the highest score type of game but a strategy game. Let me say I am not an avid gamer but I got caught up in this game called Civilization. Essentially you have to conquer everyone. It occupied much of my free time and I admit I enjoyed it. Well that has passed. Apart from that I have been working, looking forward to the not to distant future when I can finally get out.

I've watched all the debates, including the Vice Presidential version. To me Joe Biden looked like the joker from Batman when he smiled. He interrupted his opponent many times, but I have to say he was more convincing than his opponent who really reminded me of a beady eyed weasel. The first Presidential debate I give to Romney. Not so much because I'm a supporter because I'm not. In truth he wasn't a bad Governor. He had to be very flexible being a Republican in a heavily democratic state. Interestingly half of the states voters are independent the rest are divided up between the democrats and republicans. Obama looked disinterested and asleep in the first encounter.

He did much better in the second. There was one point where both candidates were almost circling each other and pointing. I was so hoping for one to shove the other and having it break out in a brawl. Just like professional wrestling. It would have been highly entertaining if one of the candidates hit the other with a folding chair. This would have been a perfect vehicle for Vince McMahon and his World Wrestling Entertainment Company. Here's a little picture I came up with as a promotion for this heavyweight event.
 
In other news, last week, the Dali Lama was in town. Yes he was in Boston, but he also was in my city. Why? If you are coming to Massachusetts and you are a world figure it seems perfectly natural that you would go to the largest city. After he left Boston he came to my city, 5 miles north. Again why? Well it seems on the street that runs perpendicular to mine, some Buddhists bought a house and turned it into a temple. In the back yard they built, what I guess would be a some sort of shrine. Shame on me for not researching this further. Anyway many years ago there was a train station and tracks (Duh!) that ran along the backs of these houses. The station is now some kind of rehab center, not for drugs, but physical rehabilitation and where the tracks were have become the back yards of four houses including the Buddhist temple house. What's a bit unusual is that nobody put up any fences or walls so it's a fairly large open area. It's a two minute walk from my house. I should go down and grab a couple of shots soon. I had noticed one day last week, as I drove down Washington St., that in that long stretch of yards with the shrine at one end, a set of bleachers was at the other and what looked like a tarp on poles, spanning the four back yards. This tarp ended up being part of a tent that ran the width of the four yards and held around 1800+ people on the actual day. There were large crowds, street dancers, local police, state police, secret service and FBI. I really do wish I was home that day. I wouldn't have had a chance to hear him speak. I might have caught a glimpse of him getting out of his vehicle. When I first moved to my present location in 2007, I had noticed the unusual yard formation and this object that's about 8 feet high and very hard to explain. It's colorful and quite beautiful. The yard is open to anyone.
The top picture is of that object I see in that yard every time I come up Washington St.
There was a lot of excitement in the area. I had to work that day so I missed it all though some of the streets were still blocked off when I arrived home near 6 o'clock. I also learned that this had happened in 2003 as well. I didn't live here then but I was only a half mile away from here and I was completely unaware.
 photo.This next photo (not mine) was the only one I could find of the Dali Lama's actual arrival here. In some respects it's a rather unfortunate photo. When I first found it I just saved it and thought nothing of it. Then I put it in the blog and looked at it again and started to laugh. No this is not some local greeting custom.
Apart from that local excitement and me conquering the world on my computer all I've done is work. I can't wait for the day when I don't have to work anymore. This feels more like a letter home than a blog entry. I guess I do miss it. My last blog was October 3. I am writing this on Saturday night so I'm praying that I can stay awake and watch Saturday Night Live. I'm betting they do something on the Presidential Debate. I'm curious to see if they had the same idea I had. I need some coffee.
I'm outta here 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Debate

I just finished watching the debate. I have to say I enjoyed it. I thought it was pretty lively and entertaining. Both men aquitted themselves well though I thought Romney  finally showed some life. Up until then, though I liked him, he really had a problem relating to the average person. After all he's a rich man who owns a dancing horse. As for the President, though I thought, he did a good job as well, but he really didn't go after Romney on his comment about not being able to relate to 47% of the people. I would have thought that this was a fastball right over the plate. I am an independent voter. I used to be strictly Democratic as is the vast majority of my state. Yet we still elect Republican governors, save for our present governor. Politics are quite popular here. It's right up there with our love for pro sports, save for the dismal performance of the Red Sox. Ugh how quickly the mighty have fallen. At least we still have the Patriots and Celtics. Massachusetts was mentioned several times and I will admit that I was pretty proud of my state. We are always involved politically nationally in one way or another for good or bad. I was curious how the presidents health care program,  based on ours here, which Romney signed into law, would be handeled. Curiously I really can't remember how Romney dealt with it other to say that he worked with Democrats to get it done. Then he went on to say he would repeal "Obama care". Huh? So which way is it Mitt. And while I'm on the subject, is the name Mitt short for something?  Mittley? Mitterwald? Mittens? Or is he just plain Mitt. He's the only person I have ever known to be named such. And I also have to say he looks pretty damn good for a 65 year old man. That's probably due to good genes, a clean lifestyle and millions of dollars. 

I am looking forward to next couple of debates. I'm going to keep it short and sweet with this blog because it's about 11:45 pm and I have to be at work at 7 am. Well I don't know how sweet it is but it's one of my shorter ones.

Time for sleep.
I'm outta here.

   

Saturday, September 29, 2012

I'm not some world traveler but I have been to a few different places in my life. The last time, 2006, I flew anywhere was to California to see a very dear lady friend. With Massachusetts roots. The time before that was 1986 to the Baltimore/Washington area. Loved Washington Baltimore, similar to Boston. Then back to the 70's. In 1979 I went to California to visit a friend who went into the Air force right after high school some 10 years before. I forget the name of the base he and his wife were living on but I do remember it was in the Mojave desert. This trip also included a drive through Death Valley to Las Vegas. He liked living in the desert or so he said. As for me I don't think I would like that kind of heat all the time. Call me crazy but at some point I probably wouldn't mind some cold. You can only take so many clothes off. You can always add another layer when it's cold. In 1977-76 I went to Ft. Lauderdale for a week each year. Spring break kind of stuff though I was a little older than most of the people there. Maybe I'll dredge some of those pictures up. Then back in 1965 my dad took my sister and I to Italy. We went to Rome then to Sicily. Jump back to 1956, when I was quite young, we made, as a family, the first trip to Italy. We were there 3 months. I was sick for for almost 2 with scarlet fever.

The upshot of all this is I'm not getting any younger. I'm positive about this. I just checked yesterday. I have been working for the same company for 40 years, through many different owners, and I am still in good health. I do like to travel every now and then but I am not really up for nor could I afford a 3000 mile plane flight plus spending money. On the other hand I almost completely ignored my own area until I got a camera. Then there's the entire New England area. I 've only been to Vermont once many years ago. It was not a good time and memorable for all the wrong reasons. I've been to New Hampshire many times. It's very easy to get from where I live. You have to love the slogan on their license plates, "Live free or die." I've been to Maine twice, Rhode Island twice. And at this point I can't think of any reason to go to Connecticut except to go to New York City. No disrespect to Connecticut intended. Then there's my very own state. For the longest time I just ignored things that were a half an hours drive away. Even my very own city with It's early ship building to "Over the river and through the woods" and "Jingle Bells" being written here, had things to offer. Granted in the grand scheme of things the last two items are not high on a list of achievements.
Then there's Cape Cod. I've been there many times. And the Cape is a lovely place however in the summer it's crawling with people. This brings me back to Martha's Vineyard. Which has the same summertime crowds as the Cape. This is why, after I gave a thought to Martha's Vineyard, I decided I would go either in late Spring/early Summer or Late Summer/ early fall. The latter being my favorite. I'm still having a hard time putting into words why the place is so appealing to my lady friend and myself. I'm sure it's appeal is helped by having to board the ferry to travel 7 miles in 45 minutes. It's a tiny, mini, cruise, then you are on an island. Some of the architecture is similar to Cape Cod and the rest is pretty unique. Oak Bluffs, the city we stay in, has cottage style houses some more regular New England style houses, then there are the Gingerbread Houses. And there's a lot of them. As you walk around you half expect to hear munchkins giggling in the bushes.

There are much less tourists about and it is quite a relaxed atmosphere. There's a charm and a funkiness to the place. Then there are just simply beautiful places.

Strolling about Oak Bluffs one afternoon, we stopped for some liquid refreshment.

I have gone there 5 times in the last 2 and a half years. It's getting away without being all that much away. It's not real expensive and it's still my home state. I think I have at least one more trip in me before I break the cycle and choose some other destination preferably within a 3 hour drive of home. I have thought about Nantucket but that is a much more expensive place. But you never know. Mostly day trips but once again, you never know if I will find another special place.
Here's part two of the slide show I originally wanted to upload as one piece but it was not to be so I had to cut it in half. I think the problem is with my computer.


I am trying to enjoy my life before I'm too old to enjoy much of anything. I am lucky in many ways and I am slowly learning to appreciate what I have and not what I want.

Thanks for putting up with my Vineyard obsession. I am totally charmed by this place. I wish you could all spend some time there. It's good for the soul.

I'm outta here.


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

I had a wonderful time on Martha's Vineyard last week. The weather was picture book perfect. The folks at the hotel have come to know us and the wonderful Dierdre (if that's how you spell it) upgraded us to the best room in the place. She said she will always do this if she can. We had a wonderful large room on the top floor with a king size bed and a cathedral ceiling.

I took my new camera with me. There is good news and bad news. I still don't fully understand this thing and the disc that came with the camera has disappeared. I had to find a way to open the picture files as the old way didn't work. Some pictures I still can't open. Others came out fine.
My computer has been acting up and it mostly seems to stem from the pictures from my camera. If I don't find the disc I suppose I can find the information online.

I did take my car this time. Not that it's all that hard to get around. At it's longest the island is about 15 or 18 miles. The bus service is quite good. We were able to catch the sunset over the ocean for the first time. In a little coastal place called Menemsha. This is the first sunset over the ocean that I've ever seen. I've been to California. I was in Newport Beach, Venice Beach and Laguna Beach but never at sunset. Duh!

I had two collapsible chairs in the trunk and we found a spot on the beach. This it seemed wasn't an original idea on our part. Other people had secured spots with blankets and chairs. We heard the sounds of corks popping. People had food. This is apparently a regular event. I took pictures but at this point, unfortunately, I'm not sure of the whereabouts of those pictures. Anyway it was a pleasant evening and when the sun finally slipped below the horizon everyone broke into applause.     

Anyway I have been writing this blog over the last couple of days. In between I have been trying to upload photos then I tried to upload a slide show I made to YouTube and it was painfully slow. According to the minute estimate my upload was going to take 2665 minutes. I cut the slide show in half (a little over 3 minutes each), managed to get the first half uploaded. I will now try to insert it into the blog.
Now I hope it works. Well I've gone on long enough. It's taken me quite a while to write this but I think I will end it here.
Time for supper.
I'm outta here.
   

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The weather could not be better

What can I say. One day several months ago I picked a week in September to take off. Boy did I luck out. I am back on Martha's Vineyard. I arrived on Monday and will head home  on Friday. I took my car this time. On Tuesday we went to Edgar town and it was sunny and 71 degrees. This place is definitely for the well healed when it comes to taking up residence. Gas on the Island is over $4.00. Fortunately I have enough gas to get around and get home. I also contemplated, for the second time,  going to the infamous Chappaquiddick. As close as I got was getting close to the ferry.
Part of the Oak Bluffs harbor. (Were we stayed. Not actually in the harbor, though that might have been cheaper.)

As I mentioned the weather couldn't be better. Today, Wed. We are planning to drive to other side of the island back to the clay cliffs. I want to catch the sunset. This morning I went out for some more sunrise shots. I'm afraid I still don't fully understand my new camera yet. I got better shots with my Sony point and shoot. I know it's me. The camera is just more complicated and as luck would have it I have misplaced the cd that came with it so apart from an incomplete booklet that came with the camera I am flying blind.
Apart from all that, it has been wonderful so far. This is the earliest September trip we have made and there are definitely more people here than previous times though the summer crush is definitely over.
At the hotel I'm staying at there are licence plates from Canada, all the New England states, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland and a few more that I can't remember. And as often times happens, the lady at the desk when you walk in is from my hometown, just north of Boston which is where I still live. I realise that it really isn't all that far away from here but what are the odds going away and the first person you speak with on arrival knows where the CVS store is located in the square of your hometown.
Soon it will be time for lunch and a road trip to the other side of the island. So far I have not hurt myself this trip. My leg is holding up well though it still isn't 100%. I can't kneel on it but I can walk well and I've done a good deal of walking so far. So apart from having some fabulous clam chowder (pronounced chowda) I have stayed on the straight and narrow eating wise. I 'm saving the cheeseburger for the last night here. I have mostly been a good boy food-wise save for the chocolate ice cream I had yesterday.
As I said before, if any of you ever get the chance to come to Martha's Vineyard come in the late spring/early summer or late summer/early fall. The big crowds are gone and you feel like you have the island to yourself.
Okeedoke it's time for me to sign off. Thanks to all who have visited me.
I'm outta here.
 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Pretty soon...

...I will be going on vacation. Officially It begins this Saturday. I usually work on Saturday but I was given the day off so it appears that they gave me an extra day off. Actually you can't fool me, this was strictly a payroll move but at this point I don't care. For some reason I feel a bit of guilt. It's not like I haven't had a vacaction. My last week off ended June 2. Of course that date was also around the time I hurt my leg. Two more weeks off. Then, two half weeks. That was pretty much June. I have also gone  longer than three months between vacations. I do have the potential for 8 weeks off a year. I have absolutely no complaints about this benefit. Eight weeks is pretty good. On the other hand I only have one day of work left, then I'm off for 10 days. Almost five of those days will be yet again spent on Martha's Vineyard. This will be the 5th time in two years. I haven't had my fill of this place yet. I am not some world wide traveler. I have  flown in 2006, 1985, 1979... and so on. So Martha's Vineyard is in my back yard and theoretically I can lock my door and be on the island in 3 hours. At least in a perfect world.

This time I'm bringing my car to the island. Not cheap, but it gives us a chance to explore the rest of the island. That being said, you can get around the place quite nicely with  public transportation. I want to go back to the clay cliffs on the opposite side, so I can witness the sunset with the clff pictured below.
I am chomping at the bit for this time off. The weather looks to be very good and we might even get some big wave action due to a storm near Bermuda traveling up the coastline. I will also be on the lookout for sharks. There have been several sightings off the Cape Cod coast and the Vineyard is only 7 miles away from the mainland.

I caught some of the Democratic Convention last night. I have to say Bill Clinton was great. Love him or hate him you have to admit he is a master politician. It was a great speech. Now at the opposite end there was Boston Mayor Tom Menino. I can understand wanting to hear from somebody who dealt Mitt Romney for four years, but why did it have to be this guy? He comes across as a mush mouthed moron. He's obviously not a moron. He's been in office since 1993. I did not get to see the mayors speech last night but I saw it on YouTube just a bit ago. He's hard to understand sometimes, like he forgot to swallow his mashed potatoes or his tongue is too fat for his mouth. He also mangles words. In all seriousness he tried to evoke the name of the great  civil rights leader, "Martha Luther King." He mumbled something about Romney not "binging jobs to the state". The man should travel with sub titles. "Martha" still has me in stitches.

Once again I have been absent from these cyber pages for a bit. I do feel a little guilt over it. I've known some of you out there for four years. Going back to the days at Spaces. I had a lot of fun there and I miss a select group of people who I got to know on the phone. Speaking to someone opens up the friendship much wider. Do any of you ex-Spacers remember Dawn? A young lady, maybe 30 years old now, who lived in Singapore? We emailed a lot. I spoke to her on the phone a few times. What a sweet, brilliant, talented, beautiful woman. She wrote and performed a piano piece called "My Winter Sonata" I just found the tune on my old desk top. I'ts beautiful. I am going to try and make some sort of photo collage just so you can hear her playing solo, her own composition.

As I was saying before I mentioned Dawn, I do feel some guilt that I haven't been around much. Life has been hectic. Nothing really bad. Just hectic. My sister is moving and blah blah woof woof. But I'm here now, so after I eat, I hope to take a visit to the Blogger world and see what's up. I will be checking in from "Martins" Vin...er, I mean, Martha's Vineyard next week.

That's all for now.
I'm outta here.       
      

     

Monday, August 27, 2012

Short road trip. South Boston. Castle Island. Not really an island. Beautiful day. New camera. Some problems. Very long title. Wait, the phone is ringing.

Looking towards downtown from the southern portion of Boston Harbor.


The pictures above and below were taken last Monday (Aug.20) with my new camera. It's much more complicated than my other camera. There is something to be said for a plain point and shoot camera. This SLR camera is larger and comes in what amounts to an overnight bag.

It was a beautiful day so my buddy and I took a quick road trip to a part of Boston I had never been to. South Boston. Specifically Castle Island. It really isn't an island anymore because it connected by two causeways (that's what they call em'), one that you can drive and one you can walk. In pre-revolutionary Boston the British used this Island to protect the colony on the south side of the harbor. Later on the Americans built a fort. Fort Independence.

The whole area is a mish mash of walking paths, plenty of benches, beaches, fishing, historic site, playgrounds and Sullivan's. A walk up food stand that's been there in one form or another for 60 years. Burgers, fish dinners, chicken. Not bad. Further up the harbor is the airport. The planes come by pretty low. This place is a nice little secret to someone who lives north of Boston. The locals have a little gem on there hands. Approaching the "island" you drive by all these well kept triple decker homes with an ocean view. Not Miami Beach but pretty nice.
Not all the photos would upload here or my photo albums on windows live. I'm not sure why yet though I suspect some might be too large. But I really don't know.





The weather has been wonderful and everything else has been business as usual. Another few weeks I'll be able to take a vacation. I am looking forward to some time off. Things have become a blur lately. Nothing really bad just busy. Time to stop. It puts me in mind of a line from a John Lennon song, "Life is what happens while your busy making other plans." Now I will relax a bit and play a computer game where I aim to take over the world.

I'm outta here.  
                                                                                                                                                            

Monday, August 13, 2012

So here I sit, a bit after noon on Monday. I have the urge to write though I have nothing of any real consequence to say. I do have a new camera I bought yesterday. We had a sales tax free weekend here in Ma. It does bring people out though realistically you're not saving a bunch of money. Only 6%. It would be substantially more if you were buying a high ticket item such as a car. If you spent $15,000 to $25,000 you would save anywhere from $900 to $1500. Of course that's a pretty stupid reason to by a car if you don't need one though I wouldn't be surprised if someone did that. I do have the option of driving 20 miles north to New Hampshire which has no sales tax. And it would take me less time traveling than it would to go to some locations 5 miles away thanks to the highway. New Hampshire is very rural and beautiful. Still there's a lot more going on in the Boston area then there is in New Hampshire, including 3 times the people. Massachusetts is not a cheap place to live. It also goes by the name Taxachusetts. Still it is my home and I do love all that I do have available to me around here. Both places have their good points and bad points.

I have not figured out how to use the camera yet. It's more complicated. I will get to use it officially on August 25, when I do head to New Hampshire for an annual gathering of friends at the home of Cathy and Dennis who used to live around here, bought about 8 acres of land and over  a 10 year period built this house there and moved in.
 Here's a link if you want to see some more shots of this wonderful place from a few years ago.
https://skydrive.live.com/?cid=f30b5cd64eb2dafe&sc=photos#cid=F30B5CD64EB2DAFE&id=F30B5CD64EB2DAFE%2114987&sc=photos

Let's see what else is going on. My leg (left to be exact) is doing OK but it's still not completely back to normal. It's a beautiful sunny day though it's quite humid. I have no plans to go out as I did that yesterday. I've done my laundry and will do two more chores then I plan to relax. I go back to work tomorrow. Speaking of the hot sticky weather, some of the outfits people wear in this weather, well let's just say they shouldn't where them. Hey lady! You're not 16 anymore. You look like an overstuffed pinata ready to burst on your own. Then there's the guy who looks like a sweaty rhinoceros. But that's life when you work in a public place. It puts me in mind of a saying I saw on a sticker. OK I actually bought the sticker and it's been stuck on my filing cabinet for many years. The sticker says, "Show me someone with a deep loathing for all mankind and I'll show you someone who works in retail." Alright I'm not that jaded but it does have it's moments. I do get a kick out of people who have apparently given the housekeeper the day off and are left to fend for themselves. This woman came up to the counter. She wasn't snobby in fact she was pleasant  but her opening line told me everything. After I said "Hi. May I help you?" She said, "Yes hi. I'm looking to make a sandwich."
She seemed unsure of her next step, like what kind of sandwich she wanted to make. It was both humorous and painful at the same time. It gets more complicated because now she  not only has to decide what she wants but how much how much she will need. If only there was an International Sandwich Rules Book agreed upon by the United Nations. Still it's a job and I am still employed. Life could be much much worse for me. I'm doing OK.

I think I'll go play with me camera. Oh Faversham! Peel me a grape!

I'm outta here.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Another fabulous Blogzilla update, well maybe not so fabulous.

It's been about a month since I've been here. I do feel guilty about it.  Sometimes life gets in the way recreational time. Believe me I'm looking forward to some recreational time. My next free day. apart a couple of Sundays, is August 20th though I do have a dental appointment. What can I say, I've been busy.  My leg is much better though not 100%. Who knows if it will ever be? These things take time. Apart from all that I'm pretty well. My friend and I have been selling things on eBay. He done much more than I. He's been doing it for 5 or 6 years. I've been looking at all the clutter I've accumulated through the years. Some I will save but, but most of it is going one way or another. It's funny what people will or won't buy. I had four packs of cards or maybe they were stickers of animals, given away by a supermarket around 1962. The key here is that the packs were unopened, stapled to a cardboard backing. $20.00. My twelve snap-shots, not taken by me, of Eric Clapton around 1970 here in Boston. My friend had a better camera than I, but I was there. I had to give up owners ship, well duh? I had to sign a paper transferring ownership. Fine by me. I have copies for my own personal collection. Not the originals but just as good visually. $280.

Things you'd think would carry some interest. Say movie magazines from the 40's and early 50's. Big Hollywood names on the cover,  Clark Gable, Gretta Garbo etc. I'm not looking for a killing. There are quite a few out there for sale with little or no takers. I have about 20 of them.

I have a couple of comics worth "guide price" about $90. bidding is around $20 at the moment. If that's all I get after the bidding ends. I'll take it.

I am heading back to Martha's Vineyard in September. It'll probably the last time for a while. I do love the place but even in the off season it isn't cheap.  This time I am taking my car. While getting around the island isn't a huge problem, One of my reasons was to be able to stand on the western side of the island at sunset at this place.
The Clay Cliffs at Aquinnah.
     
I was there once when it was foggy and misty and on this day, when the weather was about perfect, late September, 2011 . I'm hoping for some late summer good weather. You never know. The whole trip, from just north of Boston' takes about 3 hours or so, including the ferry.
All reservations have been made. I'll just have to sit and wait until mid September.
Work has been a trying experience. Let's just say the inmates run the asylum. I'm trying to stay out of all the soap opera aspects of this situation. Most of the people here are 20 to 40 years younger than me. My immediate boss is 10 years younger than me.

My employer finds new and improved ways to to make a tedious, at times, job...more tedious. Then I get real and think, "I'm still working." Just a few more years...
Speaking of work, we had two incidents last week. Both involved the same young lady. She's the one who fainted on the job about a month ago. Neither involved me, well a little in one. I'm at one end of a rather large department. There are two young ladies at the other end though I wasn't sure what they were doing. I looked again a short time later and I see this particular young lady lay down on her side like she was trying to retrieve something that had fallen under the sink. As she reached further under the sink she would squirm up, moving her body further below. Everything moved but her pants. Soon we had an early moonrise. I didn't say anything but I did nudge the guy I was working with. What we found most amazing was that she seemed completely unaware that her pants were flying at half mast. She wasn't unaware long as Mauricio, my co-worker, Yelled, "Hey! Don't you feel a breeze?!" We both laughed! She shot up straight, pulling her pants up disappearing into the corner. The other young woman was amused by it. A short time passed, maybe two or three minutes, and and Miss "By the light of the silvery moon" came up to me and said something to the effect, "I should think that a person of your age would know enough not to laugh at what is a very embarrassing situation."

I tried to tell her that it's wasn't that big a deal. "Relax." She would have none of it. She wanted an apology and that was that. So I told her I was sorry I laughed, (at your bare ass for what seemed like 20 seconds) I didn't say that last part. We were sworn to secrecy. Thus ends the saga of the mid afternoon moonrise.

Incident #2. I was in the chest adjusting an order. We need more of this and we don't need any of that. I walk out of the chest to check something and I hear and see another woman, who I work with, on the verge of tears saying something as she stormed in my direction, "I work too ******* hard to be talked to, like that by you!" This woman is in her early 40's. Apparently our younger, cheeky lass went and reported the older woman for taking 40 minutes instead of 30 minutes. They both stormed away in opposite directions. For about 10 minutes I had no idea what had happened.

As for this blog "Blogzilla
I'm outta here.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I suppose you're wondering why I called you all here today.

Okay, no special reason. I am back to work full time though it is still bothersome after 4 hours but you have do what you have to do. In other news I had a tire blowout. Right rear to be specific. I was traveling on a local street. There was no great drama as I was only going 15 or 20 mph. I heard a loud pop and on the little screen on top of the odometer it read "Low preasure!" with an image of a tire. Of course it didn't tell me which tire. The steering was fine and the direction of sound told me it was the right rear tire. Since I was only a minute away from my friends house I continued and pulled into his driveway. I put on the skinny doughnut spare and continued on with my evening. I had never heard of the brand of tire that was on my car, Nexen. It is always recomended that you have the same brand tire all the way around. Long story short it was very difficult  to find. So I did something I don't like to do. I went back to the dealership where I bought the car. I have never had a good experience with dealerships when it comes to repairs. More expense and lousy service. But I figured, though the car I bought was used, the tires were standard equipment on this car when it was new. Well anyway they didn't have those tires in stock. What a surprise, but they could order one for me and have it by Monday,my day off. The flat happened on Thursday so I would have to drive on that skinny doughnut for three days. Not a reassuring thought. 
I get a message on my phone from the dealership. All it said was it was concerning my car. I had told the lady at the dealership that I would be home by 5:30 and she said she would be there until 6. I called her at 5:30 but she wasn't there. I call her back on Saturday morning as I had a late shift that day. She said that the tire would be there on Monday and would I like to make an appointment? Well Yeah! So I make the appointment which I wanted to be as early as possible. She offers 8:15 in the morning to which I say fine. I get home from work on Saturday to another message. What's the message? She says it's concerning my car car. Well pardon the expression,  NO SHIT SHERLOCK! I didn't think you were calling to find out how my celebrity toenail collection was coming along! Since the dealership was closed when I got home I would have to wait until Monday to find out the latest wrinkle in my odyssey to find one Nexen tire. I didn't have a good feeling about this. Aside from driving to work I didn't want to use my car with that skinny little tire. Flash forward to Monday morning. I'm in the bathroom getting ready to go to my appointment when the phone rings. Guess who? The lady from the dealership. She tells me there is a problem. The truck delivering the tire caught fire. Yeah sure and the dog ate my homework. I told her to just forget it. My biggest complaint I told her, was that her messages told me nothing just that her call said it was concerning my car. She left me hanging all weekend. 
My next plan of action was to go to a local warehouse store who I had been to previously but they didn't carry that tire. I decided to buy two tires, Michelin's, so at least I would have matching tires on the front and on the back. I had to spend much more then I had planned to, but again you have to do what you have to do. Guess what? They sold out on my tire size over the weekend. But their store in a nearby town, about 10 miles away, had them. I get the directions and go there. They had the tires but it would be a 90 minute wait. After 4 days, what's 90 minutes? I buy the tires and settle in with a book. I told them I wanted the new tires on the front as they do the majority of the work, such as steering, braking and they bearing the weight of the engine. 90 minutes turned into 4 hours. I was seething but I never said anything. Finally the car is done. They told me I should come back in 24 hours or after 25 miles to have the lug nuts re-torqued. That was a new one on me me and besides they had already torqued my nuts, if you know what I mean, by having me sit there for 4 hours. I drive home. I pull into the driveway and realise that I had to put a circular plastic disc back on the wheel. It covers the lug nuts. I had the thrown it in the trunk when I changed the tire on Thursday night. As I bent down to the rear drivers side tire what do I see? The brand new tire on the back instead of the front. I know I should have checked before I left the facility but at that point I just wanted to go home.  Besides I didn't think the instructions to put the two new tires on the front of the car was all that hard to comprehend. Apparently I was wrong. Now I have to go back next Monday to switch the tires. Instead of spending $95.00 on one new tire, plus all the little extra charges they weasel you with, I ended up spending $474.00. Hey eating isn't all that it's cracked up to be. Well this post has worn me out recounting my sordid tale. Time for supper...oh yeah I'll do that next month. 
I'm outta here.                                                                                                                                   

Monday, July 9, 2012

Beautiful Sunday for a limp around the grounds.

Yes the leg is getting better. I am on my second and final week of limited duty at work. It's back to full time next week and a full paycheck as well. Short term disability helps but it's only 60% of my pay so monetarily it's been a bit tight this month. Sunday was a beautiful day though warm. Not like the heat wave that has plagued most of the country though. It topped out at 89 with low humidity. I just had to get out. One day about a week ago I was surfing the web looking for some place to go for a day trip. I found this place called the Heritage Museum and Gardens in Sandwich Ma. on Cape Cod. I never knew the place existed. Apart from working a restricted work schedule (4 hours a day) for the last two weeks I have been pretty much house bound. I needed to get out. Sure I went to a ball game last week and being at Fenway Park is neat (Did I say neat again? It must be the insidious creeping threat of middle class bozo-ism.) getting there, getting a drink, and getting home again are not that neat. Being crammed in a subway car with some guys nether regions practically in face is not my idea of a good time. And though the park is only about six miles away driving there is an aggravation all it 's own. On top of it the walk from the station to the park and back did put a strain on my leg. Too much too soon.

Still it was time to get out. From the website this place, The Heritage Museum, looked beautiful. It was. Meticulously maintained grounds, an auto museum and a Norman Rockwell exhibit, which unfortunately didn't allow picture taking. The downside to all this, it was a Sunday. It was a beautiful day and lots of other people will go to the Cape. Driving down wasn't bad. It's about an hour away. The museum was only two exits after the bridge. Cape Cod is essentially an island because there is a canal that cuts through the entire upper Cape. There are two bridges spanning the canal. Cape Cod is a beautiful place but it's very crowded during the summer and the roads down there are not built to handle all those cars. Upon leaving we took 40 minutes to go a half mile to get to the bridge. The rest of the drive to go 5 miles north of Boston took 60 minutes. Then of course, on the beaches, because of the seal population, there are the sharks. This happened on Saturday. This is not my photo.
   The museum garden encompass 100 acres. Just gorgeous. The auto museum, a bonus for me because I do like cars, was surprisingly large and the Norman Rockwell exhibit was fascinating. I didn't know that a good deal if not all of his painting were taken from photographs. He would take pictures of models he hired in all kinds of poses and places the paint a picture using different models in different locations. Sort of piecing together scenes from all these pictures. He didn't do this all the time. They had many of his paintings that were used for the covers of the Saturday Evening Post. Great stuff! A fascinating thing I observed in the parking lot was a car from Alaska. And I am whining about my drive home to Boston.
The sun was quite bright so there is a bit of a washout effect on some of the pictures. The auto museum was a a bit dark. I don't particularly like using a flash as there is a moment of hesitation when the flash happens and the actual image is exposed making for some blurry pictures. I had to lighten most of those pictures up Someday I will upgrade my camera. If you care to see them you can find them here <iframe src="https://skydrive.live.com/embed?cid=657692B4E34B334B&resid=657692B4E34B334B%21322&authkey=AMgN4rV6v6KtgRY

I hope this link works. Anyway I've, as always, have gone on long enough. Thanks to the folks who visit here. There aren't many of you but I want you to know it is appreciated.

I'm outta here.