Posted tagged ‘ride’

“It takes a long time to grow an old friend.”

October 12, 2017

My friends have left, and my house is ever so quiet. As always we had the best time together. On Tuesday we had a ride along the ocean, and I took them to my favorite spots. The sun was glinting off the water. It was so warm people sat on beach chairs in the sand sunning themselves. It was a summer day in fall.

We ate appetizers on the deck. The birds had found the filled feeders, and they flew back and forth from feeders to branches. Most of them were chickadees.

Peg had brought dinner, shrimp pesto. She had also brought vegetables, a cheese log dip, crackers, some fruit and dessert. The brownies had chocolate chips, and there was a thick fudge sauce to put on them adding to the chocolate overload though I would contend there is really no such thing as a chocolate overload. I am just using the term to give a vivid picture of how wonderful dessert was. Gracie was restless that night. At 1:30 she wanted food so I fed her and I had a brownie. Afterwards, we were both quite content.

Bill is a talented furniture maker and handyman. He did some repairs in the house, a few of which have been driving me crazy. Some of the fixes include the toilet upstairs which now flushes, the toilet holder downstairs again secure on the wall, my old curio cabinet repaired and my front storm shutting automatically.

Bill and Peg brought gifts. One was a wooden Red Sox peg board. Another was a framed silhouette of a boxer. There was homemade grape jelly and African coffee. The dip was in a pottery bowl and the bowl was also a gift. I can’t think there are better guests than Bill and Peg.

Last night we had dinner at Karoo’s, a South African restaurant. It is one of my favorite places. Bill and Peg had been there before and requested it for this trip. I had monkey ribs and beef samosas for appetizers. The drink I ordered, the speciality of the night, was amazingly refreshing with vodka, grapefruit juice and a simple syrup. My dinner was bobotie beef, a curried meatloaf served with turmeric rice and chutney. Bill and Peg both had West African peanut soup with pumpkin added though in Ghana it would have been groundnut soup. Peg had a falafel sandwich. All of us had come to love Lebanese food in Ghana, and we ate many felafel sandwiches, all wrapped in foil.

This morning was leisurely. Sadly, at close to eleven, Peg and Bill started loading up to go home. Gracie and I went outside to say goodbye. My house feels empty without them.

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“The best Christmas trees come very close to exceeding nature.”

December 8, 2016

I think the sun went on vacation. Yesterday it rained in the morning and stayed cloudy the whole day though it was warmer than I expected. Today is also drab and gray. I am so glad that I was out for quite a while on Tuesday, the first sunny day in a while. I took the highway down cape but came back Route 28. It was a beautiful ride. I passed the ocean a few times. It was low tide and the water was still. It had a grayish tone. I saw a wild turkey fly. I hadn’t ever seen one fly before. It took a lumbering leap into the air and over a fence. I wasn’t sure the turkey had the height but it did. When I was passing the cove, the only boats moored, other than a single sailboat, were fishing boats. Most needed paint and had nets and lobster traps on deck. They all looked weathered and old. In Chatham, the store where I wanted to shop was gone. It didn’t matter. I really enjoyed the ride.

Last night my house was aglow. The front fence has strands of colored lights. The gate has a huge white star on top with trails of white lights coming from it. The top of the fence to and from the star is also white. Beside the driveway, bare branches on a bush are covered in huge Christmas ornaments. A floodlight shines on them. My deck rail has strands of colored lights atop it. I added bows to the three wreaths, put balls of colored ornaments in the basket on the steps and put my old sled with my ice skates beside the step. When it got dark last night, I went outside and stood on the street to check out my house. It is beautiful.

I did what I thought was quite a bit of wrapping yesterday. Come to find out I have so much more. All of the gifts are now downstairs filling the den and the hall. Maddie, though, is complicating the process by lying on the paper. She looks so comfy I don’t want to disturb her. I’ll probably just use different paper.

Tomorrow I’ll get the tree, the highlight of my Christmas. I love to sit in the living room just to look at it. Its aroma fills the house. I have a couple of new ornaments from Ghana. They aren’t really ornaments, but they’re big, round and colorful. They’ll do just fine.

“Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree.”

November 14, 2016

Last night I slept on the couch. Gracie had an upset stomach, and I needed to be near the spider plants. I threw all the cushions on the floor, grabbed an afghan and tried to get comfortable. Gracie slept right through the night. Maddie did not howl. She slept on the chair, and because I was close, she too slept through the night. I was the only one who kept waking up.

Last night I kept going outside to see the moon. I didn’t want to miss it. I’m glad it was a warm night. Tonight I’ll do the same.

My television viewing has changed lately. I’ve been avoiding the news and have conquered my addiction for MSNBC. I’m watching mostly movies, mostly documentaries. Yesterday I watched documentaries about World War II. I watched the US leapfrog across the Pacific taking island after island from the Japanese. Now I’m watching December 7, a film by John Ford. It is Hawaii before, during and after the attack on Pearl Harbor. The battle scenes in all of these films have been difficult to watch. The deaths of the servicemen are real.

Today will be close to 60˚. It is not a day to be inside, not a day to be doing laundry. I think Gracie and I will take to the open road. I’ll open her window so if she gets the urge, she can stick her head outside. We’ll keep to 6A, a slower road, a pretty road filled with old captains’ houses and real trees lining the sides of the road. I never tire of 6A.

My neighbors were raking leaves yesterday. Both of them are in their late 70’s. He has Alzheimer’s. His job was to hold the bag for the leaves while his wife raked. I stopped to chat when I was leaving to go to the dump. He always says hi. When I got back home, they were gone from the yard, but there were still plenty of leaves to rake. I think there will always be leaves. They are the bane of fall.

“Never try to outstubborn a cat.”

April 23, 2016

We finally have rain. It’s a bit heavier than when I woke up, but it is still a drop by drop rainstorm. I can the drops hitting the roof. It is one of my favorite sounds. I feel cozy and protected in the house, the dark house as I have lit no lights, only a couple of candles.

It would rain on the day I have to go off cape. That’s the luck of the draw. I’m heading to dinner with friends I marched with in the drill team. Many of them were also my elementary classmates. I don’t see them very often. The cape might as well be a foreign country reached only by a long flight. Other than Bill and Peg, my friends from Peace Corps days, no one comes down here, not even my family. I always find that strange.

I think a rainy Saturday was one of the worst things that could happen to me when I was a kid. In the summer, we’d still go out because it was warm, and we didn’t care when we got wet. This time of year, though, was too cold to be outside in the rain. I remember moping around the house sighing at my plight and driving my mother crazy while I was doing it. Saturday was the only day of the week that was all mine. I had no obligations and had the entire day to what I wanted, but it was ruined in the cold of an early spring rain. Finally I would read to pass the time, but I wanted to be outside. I wanted the fresh air I didn’t get being stuck in school the whole week.

The rain has stopped. The only sound is one of my cats purring. She’s the one I had to chase around the house to give her the medicine in her ears. I have now switched to liquid thinking it might be easier. I’ll know in a bit because I’m going to try and give her some. After that I probably won’t see her for a day or two. Maddie doesn’t forgive easily, and she never forgets.

“The earth is a spaceship. While you are here, enjoy the ride.”

February 15, 2016

We did it again. We broke another record. Sunday morning the temperature plummeted to minus 9, with a windchill of minus 36, shattering the old record by 6 degrees. Luckily, though, we’re having a heat wave starting today. I wish I could sing the rest of the song, but the temperature will be nowhere near a tropical heat wave. Today’s temperature is expected to rise to near-freezing (you have to laugh when the temperature rises to near-freezing) with the possibility of snow, and tomorrow’s temperature may climb into the 50s, accompanied by wind and rain. We’re getting closer to beach weather.

Being housebound for the last few days has put me over the edge. Yesterday I actually cleaned and polished the shelves in the den and everything on them, and believe me, those shelves are filled. I watered all the plants and cleaned the TV screen so it no longer resembles a dust bowl. Today I intend to dust the desk and clean all the wind-up toys on the top of it. This whole urge to clean is a bit frightening. I’m thinking Stepford Wives, the original not the remake.

Spring is definitely coming. Today’s paper had baseball news on the front page of the sports section. I ravenously digested every word of every article. My imagination went wild. I was at Fenway Park on a warm spring night. I could hear the whack of the bat and the roar of the crowd. I could smell the grass and could taste the hot dog topped with mustard and relish. I watched Big Popi hit one out by the Citgo sign. I clapped and cheered.

I’ve decided Gracie and I are going to take a ride, destination still unknown. That’s the best sort of a ride: when you don’t know where you’re going. You just pick a street or a road at random and follow where it goes. I love surprises.

 

 

“I always thought it would be cool to go to the island of misfit toys.”

August 10, 2015

My alarm clock, one of the most jarring sounds in the world, woke me up today. I had to be out and about early as I was having my car serviced and wanted a bit of coffee time before I left. I had to be at the dealer a while, and as waiting is not my strong suit, I brought a book so the time went by quickly. On the way home I had to make a couple of stops, but I am now in the comfort of kith and kin.

The drive home gave me time to woolgather. A hula hoop came to mind, but I don’t know why because it wasn’t a favored toy as I was the worst hula hooper in the whole neighborhood. I just couldn’t keep it spinning more than a couple of times. A couple of show-offs could spin two at the same time, one around a waist and the other around an arm. I was impressed but pretended not to be. A Slinky also popped into my head. It was really a silly toy. You can make it jump from hand to hand or have it go down the steps. That was it for Slinky. After couple of times down the stairs, Slinky became boring. Besides, the metal easily bent or got connected one to another and then Slinky could do nothing. It was trash bin time.

Paper dolls were fun but were a lot of work. First I had to cut out the doll and all her paper clothes. That took some finesse as I had to be careful not to cut off the tabs which held the clothes on the paper doll. Kid scissors could never do the trick so I had to use my mother’s scissors. They were big and bulky so following the lines to cut took some effort. I played with the dolls as if they were people. I’d hold a doll in each hand and carry on conversations in different voices: high for girls, lower for boys. They’d have adventures for which I’d have to change their outfits. I remember the girls had mostly frilly dresses and sometimes a bathing suit, one piece of course. Props too were part of the outfits. At the beach we had a pail and shovel and a beach ball, both difficult to cut. My paper dolls always had names, but I don’t remember any of them.

I do remember the first electronic toy under the Christmas Tree. It was Battleship with sounds, and it was a gift to my father. He enjoyed playing it against me or my brother for a while but then it got put away in the toy closet down cellar, and, like the other toys in that closet, it seldom saw the light of day again.

“Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night.”

May 4, 2015

Today is one of those spring days when outside is warmer than inside. The day is absolutely gorgeous. It is warm, even t-shirt warm, while the house is still sweatshirt chilly. I’m hitting the deck as soon as I finish here.

Every Monday at ten o’clock I visit my neighbor who is Brazilian. Niecy and I just chat so that she can improve her conversational English. She offered to pay me but I refused. She is my neighbor after all, and it’s fun just sitting and chatting. Sometimes I even think we should be sharing tea and cucumber sandwiches.

The week is a quiet one for me but then again most weeks are. I have all this time on my hands, and I find ways to keep busy but most times it’s reading or cleaning or even taking a nap. I don’t go out much, but I’m fine with that. Gracie and I did take a ride the other day after the dump run, and I bought myself my favorite sandwich to eat at home which, I know, doesn’t sound all that exciting, but I enjoyed every minute of the ride and the sandwich. It doesn’t take much to make me happy.

Last night I watched The Man from U.N.C.L.E., an episode filmed in 1965. The girls’ sort of slinky dresses, the guys’ skinny ties and the swim were all part of one scene. I know I must have worn the same type clothes and danced in the same way, but it made me laugh anyway. The swim has to be one of the silliest dances.

Color has returned to the world. We are over the rainbow, no more Kansas. My spring flowers have all bloomed, and my neighbor’s front garden is filled with tulips of all colors. All the forsythia in the different yards is still bright and eye-catching. Even the male goldfinch is back to being bright yellow or gold I suppose. I can see buds and some leaves on a few of the trees. It is time for me to start wearing my bright colors, to start wearing spring.