Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Auto show Jan 2017




My friend Dave and I both like cars and every year we take in the auto show. Well we did it on Monday and for the most part we were underwhelmed. I don't expect to be overwhelmed but I wasn't even whelmed. Sure there were some beautiful cars. The Ferrari's, Lamborghinis, Aston Martins and Corvettes. Then there were the Mercedes and BMW'S. Great cars to be sure, but for the most part you see them on the streets here and there. Everything else was pretty common, Toyotas, Chevy's, Fords, Hondas etc. The following video, a quickie, has a few pictures then a bit of video of the drive home. At least you'll get to see one of the tunnels from "the big dig". A 15 or so billion dollar project that lasted 15-18 years. We have the rest of  America to thank as this was done with federal money. The city needed it and I guess the state had pull in Washington in those days with Tip O'Neil and Ted Kennedy. Still I have to say the traffic jams are much more organized these days. We got new tunnels and the bridge is beautiful especially when it's lit up with different colors or at sun up or sundown. This quick video is no academy award winner but at least  it's quick. The highlight is probably the bits of us driving home and that's nothing to write home about.



When I was young my dad would take me, every Fall, to some of the local car dealerships to check out the new models. I suppose he did it for his own amusement, but he would engage one of the salesmen in conversation, giving the impression that he was interested in purchasing a new car. Of course he wasn't. Then there was the time, early September 1963, when he was indeed looking for a new car. The 1964's were already in the dealerships but not in the showroom. They hadn't been introduced to the public yet but we got to go out back and check them out. I thought this was so cool. Well long story not so long, he bought one but wasn't allowed to take it home until it's public introduction.

The school year usually began on a Thursday. I went Thursday and Friday. Got sick over the weekend, was told I had a bad flu. Two days later I was in surgery with a ruptured appendix. I was in the hospital for 6 weeks. I didn't go back to school again until some time in January. I Remember when my father finally picked up the car, two nurses helped me out of bed and walked me to the window. It was dark and raining but I could see it all sparkly and new. I've been interested in cars ever since.

So the show was a bit dull and our lunch was a bit dull as well. We went to a Mexican restaurant. I don't mind Mexican food but to me a lot of it tastes the same. Maybe it's just that your not going to get great Mexican food in Boston.

Well I'm outta gas and I'm outta here.



Friday, January 13, 2017

New year, new life. Special guset star, The Winchester Center Mill Pond.

As of Jan. 5, 2017, 3pm I was officially retired. It will be strange after working for 49 years of my life, 46 with my present company, to suddenly not working at all. It's even strange that I can refer back 49 years and I was an adult, well sort of.

Now I have been very lucky in my life up until the present. I thank the guy in the company office who talked me into joining the 401k back in 1971. I remember thinking, "Retirement? That's 45 years away."

That was 45 years ago. Thanks, whatever your name was!

The past year has been one of change. I got used to living happily in one place for 10 years then within a year I was in three different places. I am still trying to get settled at this time. I still haven't collected all my belongings from my sisters and friends. I'm not sure where to put everything and am considering just plain getting rid some things that I have been lugging around for years. I also, as you may have noticed, haven't been around here for a bit. I haven't really used my computer that much. It's got pictures and video's that have been on it for several years.

The video below is from June 2014. I may or may not have posted it in the past but what are you gonna do? It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon and Arlene mentioned a ride to Winchester Center. Winchester is the next town west of here. An upscale Boston suburb with a lovely pond and park in the city center.




Here's a shot from a tour Arlene and I took of Fenway Park.

It snowed here a couple of days ago. We got about 8 inches but it was easy to deal with as it was very cold making it much lighter. It's  gone because the temperature hit pretty much 60 for a couple of days. In 2014 we got a lot of snow. Here's are a few pictures taken the next day after a storm with all the shoveling, plowing and snow blowing done.



On my second to last day of work I had a blow out while driving in. I really didn't have a place to stop and I was not looking forward to changing the tire in the first place. I hadn't done that in years, so I drove roughly two miles on the flat, shredding the tire but fortunately not damaging the rim. They are expensive! Again fortunately, I have Triple AAA. It's the best bargain on the face of the earth as far as I'm concerned. That was the second time in a year I used them. The first time was for a dead battery. Aside from the initial cost for a year, which is reasonable, It has more than paid for it's self. My car is now 9 model years old and apart new tires and a dead battery I've had no problems. It has been a reliable, comfortable car and I have no plans to add a large monthly payment to my situation.

Both Arlene and I have been going over what we both want to accomplish this year. The passed year was disruptive for both of us. I promised her that we would be going back to Martha's Vineyard. We even talked about a quick trip to Vermont. I have never been there but Arlene has. There are as many people in downtown Boston as there are in the entire state of Vermont. We are squished in around here. Massachusetts is small but densely populated so if you can get away to a quiet rural setting you why not? As great a place as the Boston area is, getting around can be a bit of a trial or as we more commonly say, "One big pain in the ass."
   
Below is a slideshow that I think I posted before but I don't remember if it was here or back on Spaces. I had gone through old photo albums and picked out pictures from various times in my life including, a trip to Italy back in 1956. There are shots of my parents, grand parents aunts, uncles, cousins and me. I was 4 and a half. Hanging around with friends in the '70s and '80s. Trips to Florida, California and you know where. It's all set to what I think is the most beautiful Beatle song, both lyrically and melodically, "In my life".


video
Well that's it for now. This blog entry has been weeks in the writing. It'll soon be Saturday and Arlene has invited me over to watch the Patriots game in the evening, preceded by a meal of shrimp scampi. Mmmm! You can always get to me through my stomach. You don't have to ask me twice!
 
I'm outta here.