Posted tagged ‘games’

“I guess I always felt even if the world came to an end, McDonald’s would still be open.”

October 28, 2017

My morning ritual seldom changes. I take my time. There is rarely a rush. The first thing I do is put the couch, aka my bed, to rights then I go out with Gracie, pick up the papers and put her into the yard. When we come back inside, I start the coffee, and while it’s brewing, I feed Maddie and Gracie. At this point I am into the first fifteen minutes of the morning. I grab my cup of coffee and read the Globe then toast an English muffin, grab another cup of coffee and read the Cape Cod Times. By the time I am finished with the cryptogram, I’m about an hour and a half into the day. My e-mail is next then I stir my creative juices and start in on writing Coffee. Sometimes my muse is wild with inspiration while other times I just sit and stare hoping for the whisper of an idea. I have been writing Coffee for 12+ years. The sitting and staring are getting more frequent.

When I was a kid, I sometimes had to go to confession on Saturday. I didn’t have a whole lot to confess so I used to pad my transgressions. I’d mention lying though I seldom lied. I did fight with my brother so I had that to fall back on. Disrespecting my mother or father was a good one. I think every kid used it. I wasn’t mouthy, but I was great at eye rolling or smirking. I used to give numbers like lying five times. Those were purely speculative. I never really kept count. The priest would mete out my penance. Usually it was a few Hail Mary’s and Our Fathers. I said them quickly so I could get out of there. I didn’t want people thinking I was overloaded with sins meriting a huge penance.

Today is cooler than it’s been but still sunny. The house was cold when I woke up. I turned on the heat and put on socks. I hate having cold feet.

I’m back on YouTube. Today is disaster day. I’ve watched tsunamis and volcanos and now it’s a meteor. Frantic scientists, members of the near Earth orbit emergency task force, are working to prevent the meteors from colliding with Earth and destroying life as we know it. Isn’t that always the way?

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“It was Sunday morning, and old people passed me like sad grey waves on their way to church.”

October 15, 2017

I’m wondering where the sun is hiding. The day is damp and cloudy. It’s a quiet day, no breeze rustles the leaves and no voices are loud enough to be heard. I have to go out and do a couple of errands later and tonight is game night. That’s like a full day for me.

When I was a kid, the expectations for Sunday were pretty much nonexistent. It was a nothing day much the same week after week. It started with church. The only unknown was which mass I’d attend. Would I go early with my dad, the usher, or later by myself or with my brother? Sunday dinner was the biggest meal of the week. It was always a roast, sometimes a roast beef and other times a whole chicken. It was the one meal all week where we all sat down to eat together though my mother sometimes stood by the counter to eat. On weekdays my dad was late getting home from work so he was never there for dinner. We were usually watching TV when he got home.

Once in a while, on a Sunday afternoon, we visited my grandparents in the city. I was amazed by the city. Houses were close together. The Italian bakeries sold pizza. A house down the street sold Italian ice through an open window. On the corner of my grandparents’ street was a private club. My uncle was a member. I remember going there once for a family party.

If we didn’t go out to visit, we’d sit around watching TV until my dad took over and turned to a football game. That sent us to the kitchen to play a board game or down the cellar to play. If I had a book, I’d go read it in my room away from the noise. My mother cooked in the kitchen. She peeled potatoes and opened cans of vegetables. We usually ate around two. Most times there was no special dessert. We’d grab cookies.

Sunday night we’d watch a bit of TV then it was early to bed because of school the next day. We always grumbled. That never got us anywhere except upstairs to bed at our regular time.

“The first rule of hurricane coverage is that every broadcast must begin with palm trees bending in the wind.”

August 25, 2017

Some mornings all the elements converge just right and the most gorgeous day dawns. Today is one of those mornings. The breeze is from the north, and I could smell the ocean when I was out with Gracie. Both of us stayed on the deck, not wanting to come inside. The smell of the salt water flooded my mind’s eye with familiar images. I saw the ocean with its tiny whitecaps hitting the sand. I saw the grasses atop the dunes dancing, blown by the slight breeze.

The morning air is cool today. Sharp sunlight glints through the trees hanging over the deck and leaves shadows of armlike branches. The small round mirrors hanging from the pine branches send a reflection of white circles bouncing around the side yard. The birds fly in and out, and I was glad I filled the feeders yesterday.

Today in all its glory needs to be savored.

I’m watching the news about Hurricane Harvey. I know what it’s like to dread the coming wind, rain and high water. I remember Hurricane Bob. It left trees across roads, wires hanging from split telephone poles and branches all over streets and yards. I lost a fir tree in my front yard, my second Christmas tree, but I still felt lucky because the tree fell away from the house. Stores were closed. I was without electricity for days. I cooked all of the freezer meat on the grill trying to save it. I drove all over to find ice. I couldn’t believe the damage I saw. It took a long while for the clean-up and for everything to get back to normal.

On August 25th 1954, two amazing events occurred. Hurricane Carol developed near the Bahamas and started its way toward New England. It would reach the coast days later, at the end of the month. Carol was devastating and deadly. Cape Cod was evacuated. More than 10,000 homes across New England were damaged including 1,545 that were completely destroyed. 3,000 boats and 3,500 automobiles were wrecked. Even Boston wasn’t spared. The wind sheared off the steeple of the Old North Church. Though I was only seven, I have memories of this storm. The giant, old elm tree across from my house went down and fell on the street making the road impassable. My father brought my brother and me outside during the eye of the hurricane to see the tree, and we climbed among the branches. I remember how still it was and how quiet.

The second amazing event was my sister Moe was born. Today she turns 63. She was under 5 pounds at birth so the hospital kept her until she gained more weight. That was the practice back then. She was still in the hospital when we lost electricity so we glad she was. By the time she came home, our house was back to normal.

My sister and Carol are forever joined in my memory.  That’s not to say they have anything in common except both were born on the same day.

“Life is more fun if you play games.”

August 13, 2017

The rain fell most of the day yesterday. Sometimes it was heavy and other times just misty. When I first woke up this morning, it was cloudy. When I woke up a second time, it was still cloudy but the sun poked through a couple of times giving me some hope for a nice day. It will be warm, low 80’s, but less humid.

Gracie and I did a couple of errands yesterday. We took 6A, but it too was filled with traffic, tourists looking to while away the rainy day.I learned in Ghana to see the bugs as protein I stopped at the candy store to get some peanut butter cups and chocolate peppermints for movie night. That shop was filled with more people than I’ve ever seen in there. I guess there is no better cure for a rainy day than chocolate. Actually, chocolates are a panacea for whatever ails us.

The other evening I was having a bowl of cereal, Rice Krispies, when I noticed a small bug swimming on top of the cereal. I flicked it out of the bowl and kept eating. I learned in Ghana to see bugs in my food, especially flour, as added protein. It is one of the strange things I learned.

I like Life Savers, but my favorites are made by Reed’s, root beer closely followed by cinnamon. Wintergreen is my favorite flavor of Life Savers. In a package I got in Ghana from my mother were a few rolls of Life Saver’s tropical fruits. I guess she figured they were a fun choice. The colors were the same as the fruit colors, even that green of honeydew melons and the light orange of cantaloup. The coconut was my favorite. We sat one night guessing all the fruits. It was our evening’s entertainment. It didn’t take much to amuse us.

My friends and I play games once a week. In the winter it is on Sunday night then we watch The Amazing Race which was DVR’d on Friday. We didn’t like it on Friday so we continued with Sunday. Creatures of habit I guess. Now it is Saturday night, movie night. We have some appetizers then play Phase 10 before the movie. If we have time, mostly in the winter, we also play Sorry. We never seem to tire of either game. We even keep a list of winners from each week. There is usually a bit of gloating. I was the gloater last week.

“Adventure in life is good; consistency in coffee even better.”

July 11, 2017

When I first took Gracie out this morning, it was misting. After that it started to rain. I could hear it on the roof. But now, it seems to have stopped leaving the day still dark and chilly from the dampness. It is uninviting.

A few of the neighborhood kids were outside yesterday riding their bikes. Whatever or whoever had held them hostage has let them go. That’s the first time I’ve seen them all summer.

Today is in-house chores like watering plants and doing laundry. I’m thinking I’ll stay in my cozy clothes and take an afternoon nap. Gracie is already napping.

My sisters and I always have the small print reaction to drugs and such. If only 3% of people get a rash, we’ll each have a rash. Yesterday I had a follow-up check for the laser procedure I had on my eyes, the laser iridotomy.  The doctor checked and then explained that for 1% of those who have the procedure, it doesn’t work; of course, I am among that 1%. That means another, more intricate procedure to safeguard my eyes by releasing the pressure as they do for people with glaucoma. I called my sister and told her about the 1% and she said of course you would be among them. My other sister said the same thing in the same words. It’s a family thing.

When I was a kid, I caught all the kid diseases. I remember lying in bed in my dark room when I had the measles and being bored to death doing nothing. The only things I remember about chicken pox are they have nothing to do with chickens and you can’t scratch or you’ll get scars. Mumps made it difficult to chew and my face was swollen in places. My mother took everything in stride despite the fact that over time we passed the illnesses to one another, and she was our nurse going up and down the stairs whenever we needed her or thought we did. Luckily, when we were all done being sick, we were none the worse, not even a scar.

According to a new study, coffee can make our lives longer. I’m thinking I’ll live to be well over 100 given how much I drink coffee.

“Here Comes the Sun”

July 8, 2017

Yesterday we had the mightiest of storms. Down cape got nearly five inches. We got three. Roads were flooded, cars were stuck and small rivers ran along the sides of the road. The rain came down in sheets. I could barely see beyond my window. Gracie wouldn’t go out. She didn’t even stick her nose out the front door. I, on the other hand, ran out to get a package left by the mailman. I got soaked. When I got inside, I checked the package. It wasn’t even mine.

The sun was shining when I woke up, but in the shortest time, it disappeared and clouds, instead, filled the sky. It is warm and still a bit humid. I’m hoping the sun will be back to dry the deck for movie night.

Gracie has returned to the couch for sleeping. I wake up several times trying to get comfortable. Gracie sleeps soundly. This morning at 4:30 I heard her panting so I took her, outside. We both easily fell back asleep.

I like living alone, but there are times when I need another person. The bulb over the sink is out, but I’m not climbing. I need to trip a fuse or two as some outlets are not working. I went down the cellar and tripped a few, but not the right ones. I need someone to yell, “All set!” But, instead, I’m stuck going up and down the stairs.

Angela Merkel gave Putin the best eye roll while he was talking, and she was listening. Merkel is amazing. She is assuming the mantle of western leadership vacated by the United States.

Man spreading was the topic of a couple of newspaper columns and on MSNBC. Trump is the king of man spreading. He is sitting as forward as he can on the white chair with his legs as far apart as he can manage. Putin too was man spreading, but he appeared more comfortable than Trump who kept looking around as if to figure out what to do next. Hand shaking seemed to be his fallback.

Today is dump day. I haven’t told Gracie yet. I’ll just surprise her.

The menu is set for tonight. We’ll have sausage, pepper and onion in rolls. I chose colorful peppers instead of the dull green. We have Chinese and Italian sausages. It’s like a festival of foods, seemingly common but not common.

Glory Be! The sun is back and has brought blue skies with it.

“Departure of a year welcomes so many new memories”

December 29, 2016

Cape Cod will get rain and high winds but no snow, but I didn’t need a forecast. One look at the sky was enough. It is a storm sky, dark and foreboding. The wind is starting to pick up a bit, but we won’t feel the brunt of the nor’easter until tonight. Meanwhile, I’m staying home. I’m staying comfy.

I woke up so late this morning I am embarrassed. This weird sleep cycle has to be broken. I stay up until one or two or even three and never wake up until some time after ten. I figure I’ll have to set my alarm for an early time in the morning and then hope to fall asleep before midnight.

I still light my Christmas tree every day although it is getting dryer and will so enough have to come down. The house always looks so empty and dark without the tree. It brightens even the deepest and darkest winter nights.

I always expect the new year to be better than the old. I know nothing around me changes too much but everything I saw, whatever I learned and anybody I met makes me more than I was, makes me a bit better than I was.

The highpoint for me this year was my trip back to Ghana. My friends and I had the most amazing time. We saw elephants walking around our chalets just nonchalantly stopping and stripping trees of their leaves while we stood close but still a safe distance away. We saw our former students almost every night in Bolga. We ate our favorite Ghanaian food. We went shopping on market day which was always my favorite day. It was a trip of highlights.

I don’t need a whole to keep me happy. Summer movies and Sunday game nights are never boring or tiresome. We loved sitting on the deck on a summer night with a small breeze keeping the evening comfortable. We laughed at all the bad black and white B movies we saw. One of my favorite creatures was the giant spider scaling the wall of the skyscraper. On Sunday it is Phase 10 and Sorry. With Sorry, just as you think victory is yours, your man, right next to home, gets knocked off back to start. That’s when someone always says  I hate this game.

I’m going to do laundry today, and that’s it. Gracie and I went to the dump yesterday, and there were so many cars, you’d think they were giving something wonderful away. Gracie’s head swiveled.

Now it’s time for lunch and the rest of the lazy day!