Sunday, June 28, 2015

Out of my mind. Back in 5 minutes.

As I begin to write this it is a dreary, rainy, cool day around here. I suppose the highlight of the passed week was another procedure in my dental implant situation. This has been going on since Oct. 31, 2014. I was told it would take 4 to 6 months for the complete procedure. At this point it looks like it will finish up in September for various annoying and boring reasons. Everything is going along fine. On Friday I had some pins put in. I have stitches in my mouth and there really wasn't much pain. I went directly from the oral surgeon to the pharmacy. I was still bleeding a bit so I must have looked like I  just came lunch at Dracula's. "More type O?"

The 4th of July always has a way of sneaking up on me. Aside from maybe going next door to Arlene's or another friends house I really don't do much. I might even have to work and I really don't care. The big celebration around here is not that far away, about 5 miles. That's where the Boston Pops play and they have a big fireworks display. I have no intentions of going. Just you and several hundred thousand of your closest friends. There are several spots we can see the display from very close by. Who knows depending on the weather, always a big if, maybe we will go down there. It's less than a mile. Of course with a large gathering there are always concerns about safety and we're hearing a lot on the news about, "If you see something, say something." Hundreds of thousands of people in one spot could be tempting to some lunatic.

Celebrations like these are going on all over the country. Large crowds can be a target of some sort of attack. I did go to one of 4th Pop concerts back in 1976. Even then there was a huge crowd and we weren't very close to the hatch shell.
Here are two pictures from the internet.

On Monday morning I bring my car in for some service. My car is from 2008 and I have to say it has been dead reliable. Apart from some really crappy chromed wheels, which were peeling and had to be replaced I have not had one major problem with this car. I had more problems with the dealership. But now there is a water leak. The sun roof is suspected. I'll have the brakes looked at as well as they are the original factory brakes. Why should I tempt fate? It seems that I will have to get a rental though. Arghh!!!

So that's my story and I'm sticking to it.
I'm outta here.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

My Dad

I know father's day, as with many other "holidays" are nothing more than contrived days by business entities. Still this particular day made me think of the talents my father had. Though he never had any formal training and considering the time and place he grew up in, my dad could effortlessly play the piano and draw. He always drew but he never painted until one Christmas my sister gave him a set of oil paints. He was off to the races. After learning some basics, he set out to recreate pats of the Sistine Chapel. Not on the cellar ceiling but rather large paintings. He did 10 or 12 of them. They stood around 3 feet high or so. Here are two of them.

He did a few portraits then settled on landscapes. He saw this artist on PBS. I forget his name but he could whip up a landscape painting in less than a half hour. It seems my father said, "I can do that."
Here are some of his landscapes. I have six of them hanging in my living room. I showed those 5 or 6 years ago. These are others that I have photographed.



All these feature pretty much the same theme. I can't actually say all of these were done in a half hour because I know they weren't. And yet if you look at it and think that it's well detailed, you would be surprised to learn it's fairly easy and quick with certain size brushes.
I know nothing about painting but I did see my dad paint and it just came to him naturally.

Here's my dad and me in Royall Park in my hometown, on my mother's birthday June 13, 1953. 
 So happy Fathers Day dad. Thanks for a wonderful childhood.

I'm outta here.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Driving around

We are still basking in the afterglow of our vacation and I think we will make the trip one more time in the fall. After that I'm not sure. I'm back to work, only part time, back to reality. An older gentleman came to the counter. He's a very nice person. Pleasant to deal with but he has been using the same wrong word since the day I first waited on him. He orders a half pound of imported ham. He says something to the effect, "I don't care if it's a little over or under."
I ask him how he would like it sliced.
"Not too thick and not too thin. Cut it mediocre."

There still trying to talk us, the people of the Boston area, into wanting the Olympics in Boston. Initial thought is, cool! But that only lasts a second and then it's, "Are they friggin' nuts!"
We can't get around now! I suspect there is a handful of rich people who want this so they can cash in. Now in reality, at least my reality, this won't be until 2024. I certainly won't be working then, I'm looking to permanently stop next year, I don't even know if I'll be alive then. Hope so! Still I just don't think the area can handle this, Big Dig or no Big Dig. All the Big Dig did was make it prettier when you're stuck in traffic, or stick you underground, stuck in traffic. Though I do admit we got a neat bridge out of the deal. What are they going to do with the Olympics and if there is a scheduled home stand for the Red Sox? I suppose you would have to get to the ball park about 8 hours before the game. Still in all, it's 9 years away and I'm still not sure what I am going to have for supper.

The weather has been fabulous! No scorchers yet though they are sure to come. Tonight Arlene and I will spend the later part of the evening on her third floor porch, sipping wine and watching the sun go down.

Ok here is the last of the Martha's Vineyard stuff from this trip. It's just Arlene and I driving around on a Tuesday. It's not as rainy but it's a bit overcast. She's driving and I'm doing the video. The deal is, I drive down, she drives on the island and I drive back. I love it because I'm rarely a passenger. I'm not the greatest passenger but I have finally learned to keep my mouth shut.

Ok here's the video then,
I'm outta here.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

1 Oak Blufs Aquinnah

So I had one more day after we came home to kind of get back in the swing of real life then I worked the next 3 days, 24 hours. I am off for the next 3 days and I admit I have vacation hangover. I have looked at video clips and pictures arranging them all in some cohesive order. I also admit that in my off time this is the majority of what I have been doing. I've finally taken all pictures and clips from all 3 cameras, I've assembled all the clips into videos and put a good chunk of the pictures in slide shows. I further admit to enjoying the creating process of choosing the pictures arranging them and setting them to music. This all takes time. My computer is not the fastest and finishing them and uploading to YouTube takes even more time. Everything will probably appear over the next several blogs.

Arlene is going through the same thing. It's like withdrawing from a pleasant drug. I remade the slide show from the last blog. Many of the pictures are the same but I've added some and grouped a different set along with the Oak Bluff pictures.

Then there was the alpaca farm. We were told that they could be friendly or indifferent. If they are acting friendly they may want to smell your breath then kiss you, whatever that means, or spit at you. There was none of that as nobody tried to get kissed. They were docile enough and you could pet them. They all seemed to be recently sheared and I have to tell you their wool is about as soft as it gets. They are also a bit goofy looking.

I have also grouped all the sunrise/sunset pictures together. There are also two more actual videos of us driving around but that's for the next installment.

It's been a week since we came back but it's tough to shake the feeling of having been there, a sort of Vineyard hangover. I don't know how many more times we'll go and that depends on paying my credit card down a bit but one things for sure we will be going back in September. Maybe not as long as this passed week but several days for sure. I enjoyed meeting people from Holland, Liverpool, Texas and California though there were many more people from other states particularly Florida. Once again I can't put my finger on the allure of this place. It really isn't all that different from Cape Cod which is only 7 miles away, and yet it is different.
I'll never go there in the summer when the population can jump by 100,000. No thanks. I've been to Cape Cod in the summer and it's crammed with people. All I can say is that we are fortunate to have such a place within 100 miles of home. Leaving your driveway at 6 a.m. and being on the island by 9 a.m. is kind of magical. We're really not in an exotic place and were still in our home state and yet there is something about the allure of this place that attracts people from all over the world.

I know I have been going on and on about "The Vineyard", as all we hip in the know people call it, but the vacation hangover has lasted till this writing. I have finally gone through all the pictures and videos from 3 cameras, time consuming but enjoyable.

Well this weekend  looks beautiful and tomorrow is Arlene's birthday and I have some housework and errands to run so enough procrastinating. Time to move.
I'm outta here.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Why can't I have a vacation from my vacation?

Hello. It's good to be back home. All in all a wonderful week. Before I get into the meat and potato's of the blog, on the first day, last Sunday, the weather was nice. The next day the weather was not so cooperative. By the third and fourth day things improved and they started to refurbish the beach. We had a bad winter and the beaches were roughed up. Most of the week truckloads of sand were dumped, sifted for rocks and spread. I made one trip to the beach and managed to track a whole lot of sand back to the hotel room.


There were more people than we've seen on past visits. Not only people from other states but other countries as well. In our hotel was a family from Holland who had just come in from Boston. As we chatted he told me had had been to the Red Sox game the night before. They had been traveling across the U.S. I suspect there are some big bucks here. Another couple was from England. Liverpool to be exact. His daughter lives on the island and was getting married in the gazebo near the water.
A couple of days before we left we had the mandatory buying of the fudge. One of my sisters wasn't interested in fudge so I wanted to get something else for her. She's on the mend from some surgery but is doing just fine. What do you get. Everything is just touristy stuff and trinkets. I settled on getting her a Martha's Vineyard hoody that we found walking along the main drag. It was a tiny place. I looked around, picked out what I was going to buy and went to pay for it. The guy behind the counter had a slight accent but I couldn't detect what kind. He asked me how I was enjoying the island. I told him we love it. We still can't put our finger on it. There's just something about the place. He agreed then proceeded to tell us that he came here from France in the '70s with $1000 in his pocket. Took a job as a dish washer and has been there ever since. He said he wasn't sure why, there was just something about the place.
Then there was a curious episode. Arlene and I were sitting on the porch of the hotel. Our room was at the very end of a long porch. It's about 3 steps from the porch and the door was opened because the maid Betty was cleaning up a bit. Up the street walked a family. A middle aged couple, a younger couple, and a young girl about 10. That in of itself is not unusual. What was unusual was that between them all they had for luggage was the little girls, colorful pull luggage and a sort of basket bag that the middle aged women held. That and the clothes on their backs was all they had. They walked up the porch stairs and said something to a gentleman at the far end who replied as we all do when we don't understand someone, loudly.
"I'M SORRY SIR! I DON'T UNDERSTAND YOU!" Translation, "I don't understand you! LEAVE ME ALONE!"
It is a cliché but they really looked like they just got off the boat. I had no idea what language they spoke. Most everybody in this country can trace their roots to somebody "who just got off the boat". I know I can.
They now made their way towards us, behind us and right through the open door of our room! They were quickly greeted by Betty. Arlene stood up, pointed  at the room and said, "MINE!"
On the one hand you feel bad because they really were strangers in a strange land. They didn't seem like they were on vacation. They were then sent to the front desk who didn't understand them as well and soon they were on their way up the street to who knows where?
On the other hand it was a bit surreal and amusing. Who knows maybe they were there looking for summer employment during the tourist season. After it was over we both thought, "What was that all about?" Then we both laughed.
Here's a tip. Never think of taking some pictures and using 3 cameras. I've created a bit of a mess sorting everything else. In the grand scheme it's not important. Here are some pictures in a sort of slideshow deal.
Our ride home was uneventful until we approached the Boston city limits. then thing started to bog down. On a Sunday at 2 in the afternoon! That's when we knew we were home. It added about 10 minutes to our ride. Once again in the grand scheme it means nothing.
I need a vacation from my vacation.
I'm outta here.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Weather, fabulous.

The weather improved on Wednesday. It was still a bit cool but the sun was out and the skies cleared. We did take a ride to the other side of the island to see the cliffs. You have to if you come here in the first place. I have seen or at least I am aware of people from all over the place visiting here. Just by looking a the license plates. Believe it or not there was a car from Alaska. Then there was, in no particular order, California, Utah, Nevada, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Florida, Indiana and so on. Seeing plates from the New England states or New York is not unusual at all because they are all fairly close.

It was a long path down to the shore line at the other side of the island. It's about an 18 mile drive from where we stay.


Later we went to supper at Nancy's as the sun set over Oak Bluffs harbor.

Today (Thursday) we went to an alpaca farm. An alpaca is related to camels and llama's with about the softest wool you have ever touched.

Well that's going to wrap up this entry. The weather has improved but it is still on the cool side, Last weeks weather would have been more preferable but what are you going to do? At least the sun is out and it stopped raining. Note, the sun was not out at night.

I'm outta here.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

OK we're here or there.

I have been watching the long range forecast for our trip for about a month. They were completely wrong about the first day. It was supposed to rainy and windy and it was a beautiful day. I took some video with Arlene's camera because it's quite compact unfortunately the video clips aren't compatible with my movie maker. So that's gone. The pictures I took were fine though.

Yesterday was not nice.

Today (Tuesday) is similar to yesterday but things are slowly improving and the rest of the week looks quite nice. Yesterday we went to Edgartown and I have to say I had the best clam chowder I have ever had. Of course the clams couldn't be fresher. I don't know what's on the agenda for today except that we are about to have breakfast.  

Below are some video clips from Monday. I took these with one of my cameras.

So it's off to breakfast.
I'm outta here.