Monday, August 31, 2015

Desktop Delight!

Huzzah, hooray, and happy day! Ellen connected up my desktop and now I'm back in business! She came in the afternoon and besides that, she dragged my mountain of knocked-down cartons to the trash place, and took most of the items she had lent me away. Boy, I can hardly believe how huge, clear, and bright this screen is, compared to the tablet. Don't get me wrong, though, I'm eternally grateful for the tablet, as otherwise, I would have had no way of communicating for two months. (Phone, mail, simply opening my mouth and talking? Nah, too old school.)
El and I also moved some of my lighter furniture to make more room in the guestroom/study. She asked if I wanted her to hook up the t.v., also, but I had a lot of stuff on the table where I'll put it and decided to wait. I was pleasantly surprise at the pittance Time Warner charges for the Internet and am not sure if I want to add the T.V. and phone. I could easily get along without cable; I miss a lot more the land line phones, as my cell often seems problematic at best.
El removed the T.V. screen, box and wires from the huge carton in which they had been packed and I filled it with the packing materials (bubble wrap, bags of "peanuts," and so on). I hate to waste it, so I'm going to put it on Craig's List as "free, if you pick up."
On the downer side, I got a communication from TIAA-Cref, to the effect that the state of California wants to take withholding taxes out of my pension! They have some damn nerve, but I guess I have to see what that's all about. (Hmm, maybe it's about California wanting me to take withholding taxes out of my pension.)
Earlier in the day, I went to Target to get sizing and came across those three-drawer plastic cart things. Bought one in neon orange because I thought I'd put it in the walk-in closet. Instead, though, I put paper, envelopes, and related stuff in and left it in the study. However, my darling daughter thinks it's hideous, and suggested I put it in the closet. No room there and it is pretty ugly, so I'll go back and get another for the study and put this in the closet where it won't offend delicate sensibilities--heh, heh.

Sunday, August 30, 2015


Well, I admit I fudged a bit: wrote what appears as a second post for Saturday late last night. I should have hit "save," then posted it now, on Sunday morning, but accidentally hit "publish." No matter, it's about as interesting as the presidential "race." which so many take so seriously. Guess I was just tired, as it was at least 9:15--as I mentioned, late last night.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Nothing Much

A mess of nothing much went on yesterday: the usual, which are now chores surrounding the guestroom/study. Drove here and there later to pick up a few uninteresting items. Called El, who was on her way to Ojai with Greg; said she'd call today and come over. Got an e-mail from Susan, who says she misses walking with me every morning. Got an email from the person interested in the old Domino Lane blog; said he'd write more later.


Continuing to work my little booty off, I filled several large trash bags with packing material, loaded up my cart with collapsed boxes, and hauled it all to the trash enclosure. Invigorated, I then gathered clothes to be washed and took them to the laundry room. While I waited to go back and put them in the dryer, I unpacked the stuff from my study at home, as I want to get my desktop and land phones up and running. Actually,I've gotten pretty far in setting up the guestroom as my office--that'll be a relief.
Once the clothes were dried,folded and put away, I had lunch, then went out to buy two more mugs and a few other things. Had a dishwasher full, so ran that while I pulled together the things Ellen lent me, plus donations for the thrift store.
I'm feeling pretty good generally. except my knee is still bothering me. Also, I've been waking during the night; usually I can go back after a short time, but Thursday night was an exception. I was awake, it seemed, almost all night--what a drag and I hope it doesn't happen again. Last night was a lot better: got up once for the usual reason, but went right back.

Friday, August 28, 2015

A Barbecue and Keyfob

Had a fun and productive day. I attended a barbecue "to honor first responders" at The Palms at Bonaventura, an assisted living facility. Its used-to-be sister facility is next to it and that's the one in which I'm most interested. Yesterday, though, I enjoyed the lunch, chatted with some nice people, and met the health services head, who took me for a tour.
She told me the two facilities had originally been owned by the same company, but the independent living one had been sold. She gave me the name of her activities diector and I'll call her today. I also have a person to conact at Cypress Point; I'm not sure, but I hope that's independent livers (as opposed to those clingy kidneys--heh, heh).
Brother Jim called just to see how I was getting along and I had a good chat with him and Therese.
Had a hankering for pasta, so I went out and bought ground meat, added eggs and bread crumbs, made meat balls, browned them and finished cooking them in sauce--or, as my Italian friends say. "gravy."
After dinner, I took a long drive toward the coast next to Oxnard, I think, and just enjoyed the scenery, mindful of the fact that Ventura County was named the most beautiful in the country based on its natural environment and scenery and climate. I wasn't exactly sure where I was until I suddenly saw Victoria Avenue and knew I could get back that way.
I was intrigued to be notified that somebody had commented on the blog I wrote years ago and he or she asked to get in touch. My Uncle Frank had written a memior of his early days and I simply transcribed it after a short introduction. I honestly don't remember if I called it "Uncle Frank's Farm" or "Domino Lane." Later, I added reminiscences by my Aunt Mary and my cousin, Judy, and left it at that. I actually forgot about it until receiving notice of interest from "Keyfob." This morning, the person left an e-mail address and I immediately responded--sounds interesting!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Clearing Out and The Japanese

More, more, more of the same. I've made a real dent in clearing out the living room, at least, but there's plenty more to go. Worked on it until about noon, then went back to the library to get a book my brother, Larry, had recommended. It's "Fly Boys," about WWII pilots who crashed landed on a Japanese island and were killed by the Japanese
This is no gung-ho, all praise to our heroes crapola, though. I just started reading it and was surprised that author James Bradley, who also wrote "Flags of Our Fathers," starts with clearly recounting the vicious slaughter of native people in the building of our huge and oblivious land. Native Americans were here first? Mexicans own California? Slash and burn until they're dead or enslaved. As for those in far off lands, the ignorance of Americans was--and often still is, in my experience, I'm afraid--appalling. In the thirties and forties, that prominently included Japan, according to Bradley. (On that topic, I can easily recall the characterization of Japanese people as cruel, ugly, and savage, monkey-like creatures who were barely human. I was fed that when I was a kid during the war and I believed it.) According to Bradley, though, before westerners "discovered" them, the Japanese were "arguably the most civilized, most urbanized, most highly organized, most literate and peaceful country in the world."
Noelle sent me a lovely picture of her and Joel's wedding with the two of them and all four boys. Joan Millen Hardman sent me a kitchen towel with pictures of herbs on it, prominently including rosemary. She included photos of her brood.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Strenuosity With Productivity

Talk about strenuousity (not a word? Well, it should be), yesterday was a pip. How so? Because I almost finished opening the rest of the boxes, put most the contents somewhere, and organized some of the ones I may or may not keep. Most strenuous by far, I removed the packing material, bagged it, and de-taped, broke down, and flattened a large number of boxes. Carried, dragged, or rolled (in my new shopping cart) the aforementioned to the recycle place, and laboriously lifted and hurled them in the bin. I took at least ten trips and I probably have that many or more to go. By the time I quit, I was sweating like a pig--unlovely phrase and do pigs sweat anyway? Dunno.
Anyway, it was hard work, but very productive and I felt good after. Earlier, I had stripped my bed and now I cooled down long enough to change it after I had lunch. Then I jumped in the shower and had a lovely wash.
Rejuvenated, I dressed and drove to the library in town. I had gotten a customer satisfaction survey from Bekins' corporate office in Upper Japip or somewhere (okay,Indianapolis) and yes, indeed, I would respond. I wrote up a sheet that practically singed the copier and left for home.
I was having dinner when that precious little boy in Tokyo called on Google+. Unfortunately, my tablet was acting up, sending messages that Hangout (the Skype-like program) had hung up, Chrome wasn't responding, and so on, so we had a short visit, but at least a visit. After, I was told I wasn't connected to wi-fi; I turned it off, rebooted, and it got over the problem.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Washing Day

Great news: My friend just called to tell me my Acura has been sold! She'll deposit the dough in my account, which is heart-warming info. As I often note, there's nothing like money to make people happy.
Yesterday was somewhat strenuous. at least during the morning hours. Why? Because I did two loads of wash, which nessesitated three trips each to the laundry room: The initial one, taking things to be washed, plus detergent (and bleach, if for whites) and $1.50 in quarters; 37 minutes later, taking $1.50 in quarters and a softener sheet,if warrented, and transferring washed to the dryer; 41 minutes later, retreiving wash to fold and put away. Yes, I performed the procedure twice, but why, you say, didn't you bring the second load when you were getting the first washed load 0R why didn't you do them simutaneously? Dunno, I just didn't think of it.
Anyway, it was vastly easier with the cart Greg put together for me. Also--sunshiny Pollyanna that I am--I'm okay with it. as I'm always mindful I no longer take that mile-and-a-half walk with Susan every morning. I need regular exercise and this, along with the walk to the carport everyday provides at least some.
While the wash was agitating, I got slightly agitated myself putting the final pieces of my financial jigsaw together. I think things are pretty well fixed now and that's a big relief. Later, I went and bought a top with "elbow length sleeves." I don't know why manufacturers don't make more of them; ladies of a certain age much prefer them in order to discreetly hide their batwing upper arms.
Oh, I forgot: Manufactuers don't give a damn what ladies of a certain age prefer.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

The Pacific

Not much of interest going on; most of the day was spent in the eternal chore that Dare Not Speak Its Name. Came across a lot of good stuff I was glad I had packed and twice as much I wasn't. Drove to WinCo, turned the opposite way I should have, and went a good fifteen miles before I found my way back. I was nervous on a particular road, but then I turned my head and saw the Pacific. It was so majestic, so incredibly broad and beautiful that I didn't care if I was lost or not.


This is the sixth anniversary of my husband's death. What he never got to see includes a new grandson, not yet two; his older grandson's second marriage; the various moves in the family, including mine to California; and plenty of other occurrances among family and friends, as well as world happenings. His older brother, Bill, to whom he was closest of his six siblings, died six months after Pat did. That would have been a dreadful blow for him, so I suppose it's just as well.
If he had lived would we have moved to California? Almost surely not; he wasn't the adventurous type. If he hadn't been so sick for so long,he probably would have simply continued following his routines--he was oriented that way. He would have been, I think, reasonably content, if not deliriously happy--he wasn't the deliriously happy type.
Well, back to the present: I continued unpacking and putting away, of course. In fact, that will just be a given for the next many days, so I probably won't mention it again. Called brother Larry to see how he came through the removal of a melanoma on his back. I was delighted to hear it was very tiny. was removed (in fact, he was an out-patient), and the doctor said there was no chance it had spread. Larry mentioned a book a friend had recommended called "Fly Boys." I was surprised, as he was when he read it, that it isn't just an account of WWll pilots, but seems to include pacifist sentiments. That interested me, so I went to the library in town to look it up. However, I didn't see it in the system, so will check the title and author.
But while there, I had a happy experience: A librarian helped me with the request and we started talking. It turned out she's also a pacifist and we had other things in common. Her name is Mary and I'd say she's about in her middle fifties. Anyway, I'll see her again at the library and maybe eventually we'll became friends.
Speaking of which--I do intend to search out friends and, in fact, have a few avenues in mind. Right now, though, I want to concentrate on getting my place in order and I'm content with that.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Eternal Job

Heh, heh. A few short months ago, I referred to my selling and donating and tossing and wrapping and packing as my "forever job." Little did I know...
Just as well I didn't: UNpacking and UNwrapping and putting away have become the tiresome jobs I can't believe will ever end--
However. there's light at the end of the bubble wrap. I calculate I've emptied about half of the boxes and will just continue to plug away. I'm hopeful some of this material can be re-used; ran into Israel, the maintenance guy and he said somebody was moving and may want it. Oh, please, be my guest!
Incidentally, I took my Bekins complaint to their Facebook page. Left a long tirade, but I'm not sure if they allowed it to be posted; my tablet doesn't work the same way as the desktop.
I stopped into the office to say they could give the mover-outer my number and started chatting with a couple, Linda and Steve, who were scouting out the place. After many years in L.A. they want to leave, saying it's become unliveable, what with the traffic, the crowding and, I guess, other urban ills; plus, they worry about earthquakes, having lived through the big one in Northridge. I told them I love it here--an exaggeration, but not a huge one--my first apartment living in 57 years. I hope they move here, as I liked them a lot.
Had to get out late in the day, so took a drive. Called El to ask how her first day at school went; she said it went well.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Unpacking and So On

I decided to submit a complaint about the moving company to the better business bureau and did so. I also posted on Facebook that fact and named the company. We'll see what,if anything, happens now.
Esentially, I spent the the morning unpacking. I still have mountains to go, but am just going to carry on until it's done. Getting rid of the cardboard boxes is a real chore,too, as is trying to decide where to store everything. But,hey, it'll get done eventually.
As I was leaving to go to the supermarket, I met the young woman who lives next door. We introduced each other and had a nice chat. Shelby works full-time and is also finishing up her senior year at Channel Island College. She's from "the high desert"--that sounds so romantic to this Easterner!--and her roommate's name is Leslie.
It occurred to me that life in Sunrise Bay's over fifty-five community was pleasant, but somewhat static. I find it interesting to be with younger people who may not have bedrock notions about certain topics, such as religion and nationalism. And I like the sounds of children playing outside.
My friend called to hear how I was dealing with the arrival of my possessions. Betty called later to ask the same as I was driving to WinCo. I had picked up pork chops elsewhere; meant to have them for dinner last night, but saw orange chicken nuggets at WinCo and fell for them instead. Will do the chops tonight.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015


Okay, after the outrageous incident with Bekins yesterday, I'm moving on. The team of Sebastian and his wife were here for--what, 5 or 6 hours?--and darned if they didn't do a good and efficent job.
Considering the mountains of possessions I had jettisoned in Jersey, I could hardly believe what was left. It wasn't so much the furniture, but what seemed to be hundreds of boxes and containers, large and small, crammed with--geez, I don't know, the useless crap I've collected over the years, I guess. Anyway, I have my work cut out for me and will be opening boxes until I'm old and gray.
Oh, wait, I'm already old and gray...

Tuesday, August 18, 2015


I had the alarm set for 7:00, but was up and dressed by 6:00, I was so excited about finally getting my furniture. Then I got another call--this one anything but welcome. It was the woman at Bekins Sea Cure Moving company in Tuckerton, who brusquely informed me that an error had been made and I owed an additional $262.59.
What?! I already had the cashier's check for the amount I had been quoted. Now, oops, sorry, somebody forgot to pack something, or add in something, or the stars weren't in alignment or whatever, and now you owe an extra $262.59. Of course, I said ho-hum, no prob, are you sure I can't round that up to three hundred?
NOT! I can't remember the last time I was so furious. I went back and forth with the snippy woman whose attitude was about as far from a customer service stance as it's possible to get. Without the hint of an apology, she became unbelivably defensive--and offensive--in a sneering, nasty way: "well, I'm not perfect, we're not perfect, I guess you're the only one who's perfect." In other words, I was told Bekins had made an error and this was completely unknown to me until just now, when the furniture is supposed to arrive any minute. I finally said I'd send a check (I figured at least they'd have to wait for it). The respose was, "No! It has to be either a cashier check, cash, or you have to give me your credit card and pay it right now." And if I refuse? At this, the harpy spat out, "Then you DON"T get your furniture!"
Of course, I had no choice; shaking with rage, I gave her my credit card number. You can be sure, though, they haven't heard the end of this.

Everyday Stuff

Got a large load of wash done early, then did this and that until I took off for town and the library. Used the computer there, but in fact, theirs are slower than mine. I did take out a couple of books. Home forlunch, then went to Plaza Locksmiths and got another car key made. Although I guess you can't lock your key in the car nowadays, I still felt uneasy with only one.
Got as much as possible put away--in closets and so on--in preparation for the move-in tomorrow. I'm seriously concerned that there won't be enough room to put the stuff.
Took a dry run to The Palms at Bonaventure, where I plan to attend a barbecue on the 27th. About twenty miles away, but easy to get to.

Monday, August 17, 2015

The Call

I GOT THE CALL! About 10 am, the moving guy called and said he'd deliver my furniture on Tuesday! He had a heavy accent and for a crazy moment I thought Ellen was playing a trick on me. I thought she had gotten Greg to affect an accent, because the guy said his name was Sebastian and that's the name of Ellen' cat. But no, this is the real deal and he's just making it on the last day of the contract. I'm still nervous about whether my stuff will even fit in here, but am glad I at least have a date.
El came at noon and speedily put up some hooks for me,then installed the guest bath shower curtain, then took the leaf out of the table, all in just fifteen or so. We then took off for the something or other cafe and had a leisurely lunch. After that, it was shopping time.
We went to The Learning Tree (I think). a teachers' supply place where El got a few things--she'll be back in third grade today, incredibly enough--then The Avenue, where she got some terrific tops. I looked around, but didn't get anything, as I want to see what I already have when my stuff gets here.
The Avenue is fairly pricy, but we then went to WinCo Supermarket which definitely isn't. El had never been there before and was impressed with the quality of the organic produce and the savings, compared to her usual.
Back at my place, I helped El put small boxes together--24 of them for each child in her class. Was interrupted by a phone call from somebody at The Palms of Bonaventure, asking if I was still interested in possibly moving there. Guess I had contacted them when I was considering an independent living facility. I told him I had taken an apartment, but would like to talk to someone about acting classes. He gave me the name and number of the activities director and I'll call her when I have a chance.
As usual, I was restless around 6:00, so drove over to Target and bought a desk lamp I've had my eye on. Of course, I don't have a desk yet, but hope to get one shortly.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Busy With Things

I saw in the Ventura Star (west coast equivalent of The Press of Atlantic City--both rags , but I must have my print fix in the morning) that "The Palms At Bonaventure" are having a barbeque to honor first responders. Public is invited and I plan to go. However, this is an assisted, not independent, living facility and I doubt it would be feasible for my planned acting class. On the other hand, it could lead to something and I like barbecue, so I might as well attend to check it out.
Talked to El and she asked if I wanted to spend today together. Sure thing; I'm always happy to see her. She's been busy preparing her classroom for the start of school. Teachers go in tomorrow and students on Thursday--what ever happened to the September start?
Betty called and we chatted for a bit while I was in the parking lot of the 99 cent store, where I picked up a few household items.
Speaking of household: My furniture and other possessions have exactly two more days to get here. The contract stipulates delivery between August 10th and the 18th and they had better follow through or--
--or what? Well, I ain't sure what.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Wash and a Holloween Pillow

I gathered my energies and took a load of clothes to the laundry place. Washed, dried, and folded them in between a run to the bank and a few other chores. Stripped the bed and put fresh sheets on, then realized I have only one pilowcase. That's okay in general because I have only one pillow, but the one pillowcase was now due to be washed. Continuing to spend wildly, I went out and bought another one.
Without going into any detail, I'm reporting that I again spent time on mundane paperwork. What a bore and I hope it'll all be in place soon.
Had a yen for seafood, so bought a nice piece of salmon and fixings for scalloped potatoes. Prepared both for din-din and they were good.
I like to get out of the house (apartment) after dinner, so I drove over to Kohl's. Just browsed until I saw this darling thing I simply HAD to have. It's a small, oblong, decorative pillow: black background with the faces of a jack-o-lantren, a skelton, and a kitty cat on it. I looked at the price tag: thirty-five dollars! But wait, this is August; wouldn't Halloween stuff be on sale--even on clearance? I checked the price and yes--it came up $17.49. Took it to the cash register and got some scratch-off discount coupons. My best turned out to be 20 percent. Cost now dropped to $15.04, which I charged, of course, and I know I have a five dollar and change credit,so the final cost? Hoo-rah and hoo-ray, less than ten bucks!
After all, a Halloween pillow is an essential item for a lady not in the first bloom of youth, isn't it? Can't wait for October!

Friday, August 14, 2015

The Hills and Insomnia

I decided to go in search of the Ventura Senior Center and followed Google directions. Whew, it's 'way up in the foothills in an area I had never seen before. Talked to the nicelady receptionist--I assume a volunteer--then the director, a good-looking guy in his thirties. He was very cordial and we discussed the possibility of my doing my Dionne Quintuplet presentation. I said I usually received a stipend and he was okay with that, as attendees are charged a fee, then there's something like a sixty-forty split with the center. Seems kind of unorthodox, but I'll tuck it in the back of my brain and maybe bring it out sometime.
Went from there to the library, where I stayed just long enough to print out a document, part of the marathon financial affairs stuff.
Called my friend to congratulate her on her last work day. then drove to the store to pick up this and that.
For the first time since I got here, I had trouble sleeping last night; tossed and turned for what seemed hours. I finally dropped off, but feel a little groggy still. Maybe I'll take a nap later on.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Pretty Much of a Lull

A major portion of the day was taken up, boringly enough, with yet more arranging of financial affairs. You'd think I was Hetty Green, for Pete's sake, but these things do take time and I'm not finished quite yet. Aside from that, I was in and out doing chores and visiting stores.
Betty called to tell me my sister-in-law's only surviving sibling had died; he was ninety-something and had had Alzheimer's for years. John Maloney had been a friend of my brother, Jim's--I think they went to St. Joe's together--and John introduced Jim to his sister, Therese. They were married on June 28, 1958, one week after we were. Coincidentally, exactly a year later on that date, I gave birth to our first child.
And so it goes.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

A Job and Relatives

Busily busy, as usual, but even more so because--yikes, I applied for a job! It's as a demonstator of new products at supermarkets and sounds like fun. It did require a lot of documentation, including proof of citizenship, so I went to the library in town to scan and attach them, but found they don't have a scanner. The very pleasant librarian suggested I go to Office Depot and that's whatI did.
Sent the documents, but it occurred to me that if I accepted an assignment and my furniture came that day, I'd have to skip. I called the person at the company to tell her to please hold off and I'd call her once it came.
Went to the Social Security Office to request an S.S. card. I haven't had one--or needed one--for 50 years or more. but it was part of the application process. Took almost an hour, but the young woman who helped me was so nice. I didn't mind.
Stopped for oranges and eggs and stuff. Returned Betty's call and after about five minutes, phone went dead--I had again run out of minutes--aagh! I jumped in the car, drove to Vons and bought more; called her back from the parking lot and we had a good, long talk. She had had a slew of relatives in, including her own 3 children and their total of 6 kids for a week. On Sunday, they were joined by my nephew and his family of five; our brother, Jim, who's now the patriarch of the family at 89, with his wife and daughter; and my friend and her husband. That made a total of nineteen and they had a ball.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Good Stuff

A good day for a variety of reasons. The first was the nice talk with my dear brother, Frank, of course. I then set off to mid-town, determined to find the library. I did,pretty easily,too and what's more, I discovered that it's right in front of a free parking area,with steps leading to its rear door. I promptly signed up for a library card and also took advantage of one of their computers. Checked a few things and printed out what I wanted. I borrowed Roger Ebert's "Awake in the Dark." Ever since I read his autobiogrphy,"Life Itself," I've wanted to read more of his reviews, essays, and interviews. I started this and am not disappointed.
I had been furious with myself because of this doofy predicament: Thought I'd close out my Ocean First Bank (local in Jersey only) account by just spending it down with my debit card. I did so and finally saw I had only 8 bucks and change left. Bought some trifle at the Dollar Tree and paid 5 and change. The next day, I looked on-line and was horrified to see a $4.95 low balance charge. This had brought the balance to less than five, so they tacked on a $35 insufficient funds charge!
Aagh, aagh, and more aagh. But I called branch manager Donna, explained, threw myself on her mercy, and she kindly said she'd recind both fees and close out the account. Now that's the kind of thing that sets me up for--well,until the next crisis, anyway.
Note: It's August 11 and do I know where my possessions are? No, but they've gotta becoming soon, as they were promised to arrive between the tenth and the eighteenth; anxiously waiting...

Monday, August 10, 2015

Chores, Dinner, and Cait Jenner

Even with little furniture, there are household chores; they took all of ten minutes when I did them yesterday. Swept my tiny kitchen floor, scoured the double sinks, and rearranged the walk-in closet. Folded and stowed the laundry and that was about it.
Went to Target to look at shopping carts, which I want to get eventully. Stopped at WinCo Supermarket, which I favor because it's employee owned, but I also like the produce, organic and non. I like their prices, too.
Showered and washed my hair, then turned to this lovely machine (or diobolical contraption, depending on my mood) to see I had just missed a web cam call from the far east, as it used to be called. I quickly called back and after some frustrating misconnections, was able to greet precious little K., Daddy and Mommy.
This little boy is growing so fast, physically and otherwise. He showed me several sets of his trains, pointing out the "geen" and "boo" ones in English, the yellow one in Japanese. What a darling baby and soon too be two!
After that happy interlude, I donned slacks and a fairly dressy top, then put on makeup, the first time for both since I arrived. Don't know why, I just felt like it. Drove over to Ellen's--early, of course, I wouldn't want to spoil my record--and we took off for Outback.
I was surprised at how crowded it was, but we had a reservation and were seated right away. We both decided on the mixed BBQ grill of shrimp, chicken, and ribs with a beer for me and a watermelon Margerita for El. Very tasty and I took some home. Happily, my gift card just covered the meal and a little of the tip; El left the rest.
Back at her house, we sat and watched T.V., a novelty for me, as I don't have one; saw "I Am Cait" with the former Bruce Jenner and some of some of her trans friends. Fun to see for awhile, although I know these "reality" shows are scripted, or at least guided to a fare-thee-well. Got home just as it was getting dark after a good day.
More good: just got a call from brother Frank, my fellow Californian and we had a lovely sib visit.

Sunday, August 09, 2015

Thisa and Thata

Got an early call from long-time friend and high school classmate, Jeanne Dollard P., asking for contact info for long-time friend and St. James classmate, Elva Gruhler B. It seems Jeanne came across a painting she thinks may be valuable and she would like Elva's advice. I had taken Jeanne up to Elva's art gallery in Lambertville a few years ago; coincidentally, Elva had called me last week while we were at the roller rink.
Forgot to mention I talked to sister-in-law Therese and brother, Jim, the other night. They were going down to see Betty and her gang yesterday.
Aside from that, things are still pokey. I took a drive (and got gas--it gets easier with practice) toward the ocean and beach. but didn't quite make it. Where I come from, Ventnor--for that matter, all of Absecon Island--there's a nice straight shoreline. The island's only eight miles long anyway, so sooner or later, no matter in which direction you go, you hit water. Ventura sprawls for miles and its beaches are craggy, rocky, and irregular. Actually,that seems to me more interesting than straight and steady, but it takes some getting used to.
This place has lots of amenities, but two it doesn't are individual washers and dryers. There are coin operated ones and this morning (with some apprehension, as I haven't used them for roughly 60 years), I took the plunge.
Hey, no prob! It takes 45 minutes, it said, and I set the timer, went back to work on the Sunday crossword for that long, went back to put them in the dryer, and now have clean clothes. Soon, I'll go to WinCo Supermarket for supplies, and later, will shower and dress for dinner with Ellen at Outback.

Saturday, August 08, 2015

Nothing Much

Well, I don't have a clue as to whether my recent posts are actually being added to this blog or not. I wish one of my mutitude of readers (ha!) would post a comment to that effect if they can read this.
As for yesterday, nothing much went on. Bought two pretty purple plants with the few dollars left on my Trader Joe's gift card from Anne Mary. Found a nice park nearby my place and will eventually explore it. Talked to El and we made a date to go to Outback for dinner tommorow (Greg works until 8); I'll use the gift card I received as a going away present from Sunrise Bay friends.

Friday, August 07, 2015

Comings and Goings

Betty and I finally caught up with each other, she with lots of company, Mimi involved in multiple tasks.  These included getting a cashier's check at the bank, faxxing insurance documents hither and yon, and finally using most of the gift card Anne Mary gave me at Trader Joe's.  (You can be sure I bought some cheap Chardoney along with the garlic and onions.)
In addition, following my policy of persistance, I took the shoe holder with which I had been so thrilled, back to B, B & B.  I asked if I could trade the 60,000 little pieces in the box for their already assembled floor model.  Of course, the manager refused and. okay, fair enough, I tried, he said no, and I'd just have to go on keeping my wardrobe on the floor...
But hold on, wait a minute--he ("Dave") then told me to give him a half hour and he'd put it together for me--and he did! I'm delighted to have my duds neatly on the fabric shelves.
Went here and there with a bunch of other chores, too, but nothing of interest except to me. Finally got connected with my friend and we had a good talk. I miss her, but am glad they'll soon be on the move, too. Singapore son Mike has also moved,so lots of comings and goings recently.

Thursday, August 06, 2015

Table and Highway Robbery

El and Greg got back from San Luis Obispo, having had a lovely time.  I was presented with a gift from there, a cute "wine apron."  It's in a kind of rough fabric, like oldtime barkeeps used to wear, printed with a variety of cockscrews.  Can't wait to wear it when I have company!
Got in touch with the Craigslist table's seller and later, Ellen and I drove to Fillmore (about 22 miles) to see it.  We did, I liked it, got some shaved off the asking price and drove away with my new table.  It's wood, painted white, in a kind of country style.  Seems to me it'll go well with the four kitchen chairs (Swedish-y, in light wood, with rush seats) I have left and coming soon, I hope.
We had to take the legs off to get it in the car, then Ellen and Greg put it back together again.  Looks good, although with the leaf, is slightly large for the space, but okay.
Bed, Bath & Bad Practices will see me shortly.  I bought two over-the-door plastic hooks there yesterday, thinking $4.99 plus tax was a good price.  I then stopped at the 99 cent store for a few other items and what did I see?  Yep: identical hooks for a cent less than a dollar.
Will I actually take the ones from the highway robbers back?  You bet your bottom sheet I will!

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Table and Towel Rack

Took the table back to Target, but found a possibility later on Craigslist.  Contacted the seller and asked her to let me know where she lives and when I can see it.
Stopped at the office to ask if I could add towel holders to the two bathrooms.  Oddly (it seems to spoiled me), they have only one.  I was taken aback to be told yes, but I'd have to remove them when I leave.  No biggie, I figured, I'll get an over the door one.
Went to Bed, Bath & Big Pricetags and bought it, along with a sponge holder and a paper towel dispenser.  
But darn, I'll keep only the former; when the rack's in place, the bathroom door can't be closed and the towel thing seems too cumbersome.  Okay, I'll think of something else.
Actually, it's kind of fun to test my ingenuity in improvising.  And by the way, I think a big test is rolling down an interstate right now: I'll soon have to figure out where to put what when my furniture comes and whether all those boxes will even fit in here.
Note: I'm pleased that finally I'm able to get into this blog from my tablet.  I'd been having some difficulty before which I think stemmed from the two e-mail addresses I have.  In truth, I'm so grateful I have the tablet, although it took me a few years to get used to it.  Thank you, kiddies!

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Coming Soon!

Oh, joy!  Bekins woke me at 7:30 (yes, I've been a slug-a-bed lately) to tell me the moving guy is going to pick up my furniture tomorrow and start the trek west!  Happy day, but now I must prepare.
I'm a tad worried because there's a real possibility the stuff won't fit in my apartment--the boxes, that is.  Well, I'll just have to move things around and hope for the best.
The great news about it, too, is that the cost--I held my breath when she was about to tell me how much--is several thou less than I thought it would be--whew!
Just fed Kitty Boy and will be back at 5:00 to give him his dinner. Now I'm off to get a cashier's check for the moving fee and to take back (sigh) the table I bought yesterday.  Will look for a larger one elsewhere.

Monday, August 03, 2015

Back at El's

Here I am back at El's at 4:18 on Monday a bit after 4:00.  Had a busy day already: Picked up a bunch of stuff, including a small table at Target, but now I think it's too small and may take it back.  Found myself on the Freeway again--a sheer accident, as always--but really, it wasn't bad.  I drove to Oxnard, but was able to make my way back to Victoria Avenue, with which I'm familiar.
Went to the post office to send Mike's mail and bought chicken, which I intended to prepare in the oven, but--oops!  I forgot I have only a frying pan, plus a small sauce pan Ellen lent me.  Picked up a rectangular cake pan at Walmart, which will do fine.
I'm getting much more adept at my tablet, finally and at long last.  I can access virtually everything I can on the desktop; it just acts and reacts a little differently.  I still find it harder to type on it, even with the keyboard, but it's doable.  Last evening, as I enjoyed my Chardonnay, I watched a few things on YouTube--just as entertaining as television and without the commercials--most of them, anyway.
The big news is I pumped my own gas!  Yes, all by myself and I didn't even asked anyone to help. It's not so hard and I know I'll get used to it as a normal activity.
At Ellen's invitation, I'm doing my wash here.  She and Gregg are up in San Luis Obispo for a mini-vacation and I'm here to feed Sebastian and put out her trash.
So things are going swimmingly, I'm happy to write, and Jersey seems far away, literally and figuratively and that's my quota of "lys" for today.

Sunday, August 02, 2015

Running Like Crazy

I've been running around like crazy the past few days, just getting this and that, such as a large bowl, a can opener, a frying pan, and folders, and so on.  My furniture consists of my bed, which I bought new--very comfy and I sleep like a log--two kitchen chairs Ellen lent me, and a small folding table Greg lent me.
Lots of new car (and I like it a lot) stuff: insurance (car, tenant, and landlady), banking obligations, and so on--drags, one and all, but they have to be done and I'm beginning to see light at the end of the tunnel. Laid all my incredibly varied paperwork out on the bed, put it in piles, stored in folders, and otherwise got it more manageable, a big load off my mind.
Drove "downtown," which I was pleased I was able to do, and visited several thrift shops.  Bought some baskets and two pretty tumblers, plus some storage items.  Enjoyed that a lot.
I'm writing this at Ellen's, as the tablet--while it's useful otherwise, is more difficult to type with, plus balky at certain times.  She are Greg are going away for tomorrow for overnight, so I'll come back to feed Sebastian, and will probably add an entry then.

Saturday, August 01, 2015


Got a car, a 2013 Hundai Accent.  It's identical to the one I rented--even the color--and I like it a lot.   Pretty good deal on it, too, I think.  Bought it from Hertz Rental Cars.  This is the second time I've done that and I hope it turns out as well as it did the last time.
Had a business day with business matters and picking up this and that.  I may not post for some time, as I have a problem using my tablet; also, my Comcast e-mail will expire soon.