Tuesday, October 17, 2017

On Dad, Greg, Bill and Elaine

Today is my father's birthday--he would have been 93. His death came as a shock to me, although I knew he was in bad health. Part of me was relieved because it was hard for me to be here in Connecticut while he was in Florida. One time I called the hospital after he was admitted with a knee injury. A nurse asked if I was going to pick him up. I told her I wouldn't do much good up in Connecticut with a cast on my leg. When I visited him after that, we were cane twins, hobbling around together.

I mostly miss Dad to reflect on shared memories of trips, hear family stories and share music. Jeff and I had planned to spend Christmas with him the year he died--in April. I regret we never made that trip.

Just about a month ago, my cousin Greg died. Greg was my second cousin--I still think of him as the boy on a family vacation to Disney World that my sister organized. I think he was about seven. He was 39 when he died, with a wife and two children. I don't think I've seen Greg since 2011.

That may have been the last time I saw any of my cousins. Greg's death has me thinking more about this. I'd like to see them. Several live within a reasonable driving distance (about three hours.) But I know realistically that I'm not suddenly going to go visiting everyone. One cousin wants to come here to visit, but not in winter. So I guess we can only agree to try to see each other.

Next, I'm thinking about my friends. I know several people I call friends who don't live nearby. But how can I think of making plans to see them when I don't see the friends who are close?

Our friend Bill died in April. I hadn't seen him often, but did visit him a few times in a rehabilitation complex before he died. Even that didn't inspire me to spend more time with other friends.

Last week I discovered that Elaine is in intensive care after brain surgery. Elaine was my first real friend in Connecticut. We were roommates for a few years too. Recently we drifted apart. It was no-one's fault: just one of those things.

Again, wasted opportunities and regrets.

Monday, October 9, 2017

At Taylor Farm

We go to Taylor Farm every Friday for Dog Park Fridays when the weather is good before daylight savings time makes it too dark too early.

Lola and I also visited Taylor Farm on Tuesday last week. I wanted to get salmon at Pagano's and Taylor Farm is convenient to Pagano's.We saw Kevin and his dog Tipper. Spike loved Kevin because he had treats. Jeff and I love Kevin because he was the one who saw Lola when she was lost last year and called us.

Lola and I also saw the black squirrel. I hadn't seen him for a while, so I was psyched. Kevin and  I chatted about black squirrels in other towns.

The clouds seemed especially billowy and vertical. I only got one photo before they dissipated. Unfortunately, it doesn't capture what I saw.

A few other photos from DPF's at Taylor Farm.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

RIP Tom Petty

After a day of confused and conflicting reports, it became official Monday night: Tom Petty is dead at 66.

For most of yesterday, I had "American Girl" running through my head. Later it was "Free Fallin." Funny how my favorite Tom Petty song, "The Waiting" didn't make an appearance.

This morning I woke up thinking about the song, "You Got Lucky."

No, we didn't.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Last Chance for September Post

I'm forcing myself to post tonight.

I'm tired. I'm watching the Mets and reading things on the Internet: tips on time management and frugality, latest Trump rantings, a random blog one of my (few) followers follows. But I had planned to write here tonight, and so I am. 

My class is off this weekend for Yom Kippur. I thought it would be a good time to get in some extra tutoring, but that didn't work so well. I had one session this afternoon. On the plus side, I got to sleep in a bit (8:45 or so) and went to the gym--only my second visit this month. I decided I need to schedule gym visits. There's no reason why I can't go three times this week. I'll start Monday. 

Tomorrow I have two tutoring appointments. Unfortunately, these are at the homes of students who live the farthest apart. I start at 1 PM, have an hour of driving from one to another (that's with no traffic) and won't get home until 7:15-7:30. I'll take Lola for a walk/hike in the morning, marinate a pork tenderloin for dinner. Jeff can cook it so we can eat as soon as I get home and watch Outlander.

Our DPFs (Dog Park Fridays) are winding down; we have four more at most before daylight savings starts. This makes me sad because I enjoy these visits. We have a core group who have been meeting for years, while others have come and gone. I'll have to make an effort to see these friends more often during the late fall and winter. 

Speaking of dog park, Lola also enjoys socializing. Our friend Jeff commented last night about how much friendlier and outgoing she was. 

The Mets, in the 11th inning of their penultimate game, won 7-4 over the Phillies. It's been a sad season. I started out with high hopes. Then things fell apart. I don't remember who went down first. But the Mets fell like dominoes. One more game.  

On to October.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Happy Birthday Jeff

For Jeff's birthday, we went to Sedona Taphouse (STH) for dinner. I had suggested that he see if  he could work from home today. He did, so we could get off to an earlier start this evening. Before STH, we took Lola to Taylor Farm for about an hour. It was warm enough (and more--we had high's in the mid-80's) to take Lola with us to STH. As always, it was a good meal.

I also made penne a la vodka and salad for Jeff on Sunday at his request. Our appetizer was lobster bruschetta. I bought a quarter pound of lobster and had enough to make smallish lobster rolls for lunch today. And I discovered today was National Lobster Day--a good omen.

Happy Birthday Jeff! Hope you enjoyed your day.

On Time-Tracking, Schedules, Errands and To-Do's

As Lola and I walked Schenck's Island Thursday, I was thinking about time-tracking, goals, etc. of this post's title.

I do much better when I have an appointment scheduled in the morning. I love a lazy morning, but I can't have one several times a week and expect to get anything done! (I'm not a fan of exclamation points, but I need one there.)

I've been tracking my time this week. I was most productive when I had hard deadlines to be somewhere. On Wednesday, I had to take my mother to the eye doctor, picking her up at 10:15. I took Lola to the park, then combined errands with picking up Mom. I didn't get home until about 2:30 (included lunch with Mom.) It was efficient to join those errands together, but I felt guilty about leaving Lola alone for so much time. At least, I made it up to her. I took her to to two parks--Oystershell in the morning and Taylor Farm in the evening.

Having an irregular work schedule can make it difficult to plan. But most of that is on me. Many others deal with the same situation successfully.

Why can't I?

Written 09-16-17.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

“Did He Get Injured?”

Here’s the scene. I’m watching the Mets-Cubs game.

The Mets have been pitiful, giving up the most runs in a series in their history. In the top of the ninth, rookie Tomas Nido gets his first major league hit and RBI. Jeff takes Lola out for her last pee of the day.

Later Nido is thrown out at home trying to score on an infield hit. For the third out. Mets lose 14-6.

When Jeff came him, I said he wouldn't believe what happened. I set up the scene. Jeff asked, “Did he get injured?”

I cracked up. That sums up the Mets season.

P.S. Rosario and D'Arnaud were injured in this game.