Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Safe and Sound

I didn't work today, and Jeff worked remotely until 2. It was nice not to have to battle traffic. We did go out; I visited The Christmas Tree Shop in Danbury around 10. After 2, we all went back to the Bark Park. Neither Lola nor Jake ran as much as they did yesterday, so that was a disappointment.

I hate traveling over the holidays. For years, I've managed to avoid it. Apparently the getaway day has expanded. I stopped home for a few things before I headed to my 6 PM tutoring appointment last night. The normally half-hour trip took me an hour. I heard on the radio that all routes out of Manhattan had 40 to 90 minute delays. Airports were busy since last weekend.

 Luckily for us, we are here, settled in, and ready for just a short drive tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Failed Photos

I was outside with Jake. Jeff had put the deck lights on; the tree branches against the night sky were beautiful. I grabbed my phone and took a few shots, but no luck getting a decent photo.

Going through my gallery, I found a picture I took at Cascade Mountain Winery.  Unfortunately, I'm not able to post it right now. It's some kind of peace post with the saying, "May Peace Prevail on Earth" in different languages on different sides similar to this at Wisdom House.

The photo from Cascade is better. I'll have to add it later.

Edited to add:

Monday, November 20, 2017

Back to the Bark Park

Jeff's in the office today and tomorrow; he left in was dark and returned in the dark. So it was up to me to take the dogs out. We started with a visit to the back yard. I had to leash Lola because yesterday she wondered off--not far--but into wetlands with lots of thorn bushes. I was not happy.

Around noon we went to the Bark Park. I'm in awe of dog walkers who can handle several pups at a time. I was challenged just getting from the car to the park entrance with Jake and Lola. Jake seemed to enjoy the park. He played with a few other dogs and went up to all the people for petting.

Later in the afternoon I attempted to take both dogs for individual walks. I took Lola out first and had to fight Jake to keep him inside. Lola and I didn't get far. A few cars passed by and she got scared. Jake did much better but we kept the walk relatively short.

Let's see how tomorrow goes.

Sunday, November 19, 2017


Yesterday Jeff, Lola and I headed up to Ridgefield. We're watching Jake when his family is away for Thanksgiving (returning on Friday.)

Jake is a sweet, mellow dog. He and Lola get along by mostly ignoring each other. He doesn't seem to mind if she sleeps on his bed or chews on his bones or toys. I did have to reprimand Lola when she growled at Jake when he came too close to the two of us. Jake didn't seem to mind.

Today the four of us went to Ridgefield's Bark Park. The dog park's been redesigned (maybe relocated) since our last visit with Spike. Lola and Jake seemed to enjoy it. I started with Lola in the small dog area (under 40 pounds.) After a few minutes, she tried to climb up the fence dividing the small and large dog areas. So I took her over to the big dog side where Jeff and Jake were. Lola seemed more comfortable there. We stayed for about 40 minutes.

I'll return tomorrow and/or Tuesday: I can't walk both dogs on my own. Jeff's working from "home" Wednesday, so that will be nice.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Justin and Mark

Today I led a tour of the WPA Murals. I came up with the idea (don't like the word ideate even though it's concise--too affected for me) designed it and planned it.

Mural artist Justin Gruelle chose to illustrate literary works. His six murals at Norwalk City Hall depict three of Mark Twain's works: A Connecticut Yankee in Sir Arthur's Court, Innocents Abroad, and Roughing It. 

13 people signed up and showed up for the tour--a great turnout. It was a good group--everyone participated including an artist who shared his perspective.

Bonus: I'm getting paid for designing the tour. I didn't expect payment, but I can sure use it.

Friday, November 17, 2017

An Anniversary

459 years ago, Queen Mary I of England died, at the age of 42.

Mary was somewhat rehabilitated for me by The Myth of Bloody Mary. It's hard to understand how the Catholic/Protestant differences got so violent. It's even harder to ignore the burning of heretics.

Mary had a rough life--for a royal.I have sympathy for her, and I understand how she would hate Anne Boleyn. Her world upended because of her father's lust. (I don't buy that Henry was all that concerned that his marriage was invalid--he had a papal dispensation.) Her father was a cruel tyrant.

Mary's death lead to one of the best reigns in English history-that of her half sister Elizabeth. How she would have hated it, if she had known.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Final Thoughts on our Interlaken Getaway

We went away last weekend for two main reasons.

The first was that Jeff and I hadn't been away together for three years. Even though we were gone for only three days, it was wonderful. As we drove up Route 7 and approached Merwinsville (really Gaylordsville) in New Milford, I realized that I was smiling. I love going to Lakeville, Millerton, Harney's tea tasting room, wineries, and hiking trails.

The second reason was to get Lola away. Our friend Annette had invited us to visit her in Baltimore with Lola. I was concerned about Lola's ability to handle a five-hour trip plus any time alone at Annette's house. So an overnight trip with a drive longer than a hour would be a good start.

Lola did well. She was a little skittish as we walked through Kent, better in Millerton which had less traffic. She loved the grounds of Interlaken. We knew she would, and that was one of the reasons we selected Interlaken. We also got a good package--Interlaken's Autumn Getaway.

Positives of the trip: getting away in general, Lola adapting well to new places and being mellow when entering rooms with many people, letting people pet her, hiking up Kent Falls, walking the Harlem Valley Railroad Trail, visiting DiGrazia, Sunset Meadows and Cascade Mountain Wineries, and Litchfield Distillery, tea tasting and shopping in Millerton

Downsides of the trip:getting away on one of the coldest days of the season, our disappointment with Morgan's. In the past, we found several delicious options on the menu. This season the selections were limited and pedestrian  (a boring selection of appetizers and salads--New England clam chowder--yawn) and no specials. My first entree of skirt steak was delicious, desserts were good, but the rest of our selections were just okay. What a disappointment for our favorite restaurant.

Regardless, a great getaway.