Sunday, November 27, 2005

Familiar Haunts

A Funky picture from Light Up Louisville Friday night. (Fireworks!! as they throw the switch for all the Christmas lights in Downtown Lou.)

This morning after leaving Bridget's I decided to treat myself to breakfast. Lynn's Paradise Cafe was too crowded, Ditto's looked closed so I ended up at the Shoney's on Eastern Parkway & Preston. And what a treat it was! First of all, to be surrounded by southern accents. Music to my ears. And the service! I also recognized it last night  when we ate at the pub attached to the Marriott downtown. Service was spectacular! Friendly, prompt. I can not begin to count the times I have walked out of places "up North" because I was not acknowledged by the staff and servers! Astonishing! Little do they know, I am a great (and I do mean Great)tipper. But, I have to get good service.

I am not expected anywhere today, so I have the entire day to so what ever it is I want to do! I went downtown and took pictures! It is a gray overcast day and I loved it. I miss the dismal gray of a Ohio Valley sky. So familiar and expected. All the better to appreciate the sunshine when he makes an appearance. I wish I could put into works why Louisville is so beautiful to me. It is a large city like very other large city, yet it shines even in the overcast skies of late November. From the funky stores and streets of Bardstown Road to the breathtaking expanse of the Ohio River stretching towards Indiana every little nook and crannie is familiar and a welcome sight.

Then Lexington. I find myself racing to the Friends Book Cellar, at the downtown library branh, because I have not been able to find the time to visit since May. I am  very over due for a fix!  First off  Joe, one of the staff volunteers, is on duty! He greets me with a hug, tells my how beautiful I look, and how he has missed me! Now that is service!

I find in the aisles two of my favorite books ever in Hard Back! A terrific find! I am buried in the Travel section and find six books I must have! In total, I have 12 books. Total....$29. I love this place! I wonder about sneaking them into the house in Ft. Wayne, as my book collection is totally out of hand. It is actually housed in our storage area!

I am now at the computer room casually casting my eyes around looking for the mutterer.  He haunts and terrorizes the cubicles. Very bad to make eye contact with him, I would think.I doubt he is here since I don't hear him.

My next stop will be the liquor Barn, which I will just run up and down the aisles and rejoice at the selection and the prices. There is not a single store in Ft. Wayne anywhere close to the gigantic liquor stores in this area. Not only liquor, but the best greeting cards, gifts, party favors, a deli, balloons, gift baskets, designer coffees, gourmet foods and candy, and of course lots and lots of beer! Lots and lots of quirky beers from all over the world! I live for these moments.

I am then off to the consignment shop. I love that place. I need a new winter coat for the harsh North East winds! I know I will find it there. Plus, no telling what else.

I have an 18 pound Turkey in the back of my car. I certainly hope it thaws out before tomorrow morning. I feel strange with the bird in my back area. I keep checking on it. I know this is the most unconventional method I have ever using for thawing out a turkey.


Is spell check not working for anyone else?

Are the ads gone or is my eyesight getting worse?....dang it I don't see any!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005


First Snowfall of the Year!!

Snowed all morning. Very treacherous for this Southern Belle! Drove very slow in second gear! Probably pissed a lot of people off!

Fragments from the week

That was the week that was (ongoing)

Life is a blur. Rapidly streaking by at mach speed. The older I grow the faster it flashes and turns the calendar pages. As a child Christmas arrived at an excruciating slow pace. The build up of expectation, the time away from school, the anticipation of snow was an overwhelming pleasure that I looked forward to all year.

Now I wish time would slow down. At times I wish it would even reverse. What I would give to have my Bridget as an inquisitive four year old again, snuggled up beside me in bed sleeping the dreams of angels.

What I do have now are fragments of memories from the past few days that will serve as tiny souvenirs of the waning days of 2005.

Joe and I traveling to Van Wert Saturday morning and I putting the new CD I had found at Borders into the player. Buena Vista Social Club. I feel as if I tricked him into listening to my "wacky Latin music" by saying it had Ry Cooder on it. I look back on that morning and him listening to the album in its entirely as symbolic of his love for me. And his tolerance of my wacky ways as I leaned over and sang "Ay ay ay ay....I am the Frito Bandito" inserted into the music.

Monday mid-afternoon found me having the attacks in my chest again. I was driving north on I-69 and began to semi-panic. I felt for certain I was having the beginning of a heart attack now! I turned around and headed back to Ft. Wayne and an urgent treatment center while in the waiting room I positioned myself into an incline posture that took the pressure off my chest. The doctor examined me and told me the news. I have a pulled muscle in my chest.

It has not hurt once since.

We were having a visitor at the Sales Center. Someone from my past! Someone who has been promoted from the Center in Lexington to the biggest position in the Regional area. I have not seen him in four years, and feel he was very instrumental in helping me find my way back. Or course I wake up yesterday with a red blemish on the tip of my nose! Good lord!!! All day long I had to keep reapplying make-up to the affected area. When the day was winding down into the final moments and I thought I had missed him and abandoned my nose charade, there he was.

Oh it was good to see him!

Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday, is tomorrow. I found this terrific Arkansas Bar-B-Que place in the downtown area and we will have smoked brisket and the fixings for dinner tomorrow. Then I travel to Kentucky for time with my family.

That is what I am thoroughly thankful for.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Risk Aversion

A Different Drummer

One of the dangers to having an on line journal is the risk you are taking when you lay it all out there. You never know who is reading. Secondly, you have absolutely no control over how people perceive what you are writing. Something written in jest is taken as serious. Tongue in cheek is taken as a position on a subject.

One of the by-products from the great exodus from AOL I see is a tremendous surge of freedom beginning to form. So many of us have been so careful not to hurt feelings, say the wrong things, and God forbid, be misunderstood. And then there was the dreaded TOS! I, for one, have held back writing about certain subjects because of my concern for offending anyone. I sweated bullets the time when I wrote about smoking pot at a Rolling Stones concert over 20 years ago!!!

For all my bravado, I still have a strong drive to be accepted and one of the crowd. Yet, most my life, I have always been on the outside fringes of the crowd! Why is this, I wonder? I'm not a leader and not much of a joiner. I am attracted to the wild and devil may care type of personality, the risk takers. The ones who attract attention. The ones who are in trouble all the time.

The ones who live life and do not waste one moment. Except maybe when they are sitting in jail (hahah).

I was a rebellious child and as I grow older I still tend to be rebellious. I realize that I am a part of this wonderful community on AOL, that is so diverse and interesting. I marvel that I have been able to fit in!!

I always like the bad boys and the incorrigible girls.

And that is all I have to say about that.  

Saturday, November 19, 2005


Did I act rashly leaving AOL?

I have put two years of myself on these pages to abandon them so quickly?

I have been thinking and commenting in the journals of others that I hate the fact that the AOL monster destroyed and razed the J-Land community virtually overnight.

Well, I am going to protest by remaining on AOL and not allowing them to chase me away!

I am joining Brian (aka the Love Train) and will link to all his postings! 

(P.S. needed the spell check big time)


Sunday, November 13, 2005


(Cave Hill Cemetery Nov. 2005)

We are under a Wind Advisory in North East Indiana. And they are not joking, the wind is pretty strong. Strong enough to make it near impossible to open and close a car door. No one told me that I should expect such fierce winds. Since the land is so flat up here maybe they thought I could figure it out.

The wind and rain have stripped off the beautiful leaves and have sent them dancing all over the streets and lawns. The kids next door came over during the week and made me an offer I could not refuse. To rake my leaves. For $5..........each! Such enterprise should be rewarded.

I guess I will grow accustomed to the Wind Advisory Alerts. Since I found out the hard way snow around these parts is not cause for concern. I will not be receiving the obligatory Snow Alerts that are common a little further south.

Last March I was up here and walked outside and it was a blizzard! At least six inches since I had entered the apartment only hours before. No Bread, Milk and Beer Alerts for these seasoned Mid-Westerners.

I usually do not write much about Joe's family, as we are a blended family and I feel that their privacy is important. But I have to announce that Joe is now A GRANDPA!!!! And I guess I am a Step-Grandma.

Hopefully pictures to come. He went home to see the latest addition to the family. I gave him my camera. You have seen (the last post with that blurry picture of a travel weary Alphawoman) his handiwork with a camera.

I can only hope.

Welcome to the world Tinkerbelle.

Wednesday, November 9, 2005


(The airport at Merida waiting to board the plane....why I never let Joe take pictures with my camera)

There is absolutely nothing as shocking as seeing yourself on television.  I was ill prepared for it. That is the reason it has taken me almost two weeks to even come up with some type of entry about it.

When we were trying to get out of Mexico, Joe thought it would be a good idea to call our friend in Ft. Wayne, who is connected to the local media mob, to help us. We suggested she call CNN, MSNBC, or even the CIA! She called a radio station who interviewed Joe that afternoon via the infamous cell phone! I'm certain that the "greased wheels" had more to do with us getting out that night than his radio interview.

Upon arrival home, the television station contacted me and I agreed to an interview. Somewhere in my naive view of the world, I thought they would interview me and show some of the pictures from my digital camera. I thought this because I told them I did not want to be on TV.

They arrived with a camera, I should have had a clue I was in trouble.

I wanted to go fix my hair, change clothes, put on make up. They said, "We want you to look like you just survived a hurricane." They also had a dead line.

When I was aired on the 5 o'clock news.....I was struck dumb. And I was struck deaf. I only heard one thing....that southern twang. Slow and ......oh my God! What a southern accent.

Then it was my bad side. My scar, that I have had since childhood when I tumbled down the concrete stairs at age two was so evident that I could barely see anything else! Except the bags under my eyes. My eyes! My eyes!

I need an eye job!

I had my hair pulled up in a pony tail on top of my head. I looked like a mountain woman from the hills of Kentucky.

I did not hear once word I said. I was in such shock.

Word of advice...never ever go on television without makeup and your hair done.

I shall never recover.

Monday, November 7, 2005


I am honored and surprised!!! Pleasantly surprised! Thank you all so much for voting me into the Vivi awards. It is such an honor to win considering the competition. I was in a category with some great journals!

I have been wracking my brain for a way to follow up all those entries about Cancun. It is impossible.  I did learn quite a bit during the ordeal/adventure.

Number one, you never know what you can do until you have to do it. Looking back on it I just shake my head. I would have have a hissy fit if I had to sleep on that hard floor one more night at the second shelter. But I would have done it, had no choice.

Secondly, we must take care of each other. We must look out for each other.

Third, there are a lot of ugly Americans out there and it shames me.

The most important lesson I learned was about the people who live in Mexico. The Mexican people, the locals, were there greatest. When I first arrived in Mexico I was hesitant to leave the Hotel District because I did not know what I would find. I had some crazy idea of what I thought Mexico was like. What I found is that they are very kind. The locals around the second shelter were very poor. Yet what little they had, they offered to us. And wanted nothing in return. They took care of us.

I felt like I was in a movie. That everything was a trifle surreal and happening to someone else. It felt akin to an out of body experience.

Thank you all once again. Now somebody please help me get my award into my side bar!!!!

(please forgive me, no spell check)