Jul 182009

One of the things that a tired adult on her Friday night commute home after a long work week should NEVER be subjected to… a mob of hyped-up kids on their way to a Jonas Brothers concert.

Another reason why having the train station in the same building as the concert venue is not always a good idea.

On the other hand, the commuter rail has added wireless internet access to a lot of their train cars. It’s kind of a hit-or-miss proposition on the line I ride, but, hey, it’s something.

Road Trip

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Jun 122009

Off to sunny Florida tomorrow, to load the last of my late father’s belongings into a moving van so we can drive them back to Massachusetts.

Not my idea of the ideal vacation, but what can you do? At least it gives us an excuse to visit my cousins in Tampa and friends in Raleigh.

Apr 182009

I’m enough of a book geek that I’ll frequently choose a trip to a used bookstore over going to a movie. Which is what my husband and I did last night and came away with three bags of goodies.

Among the “new” acquisitions: beginners’ books on learning Persian and Japanese, a quotation dictionary, a handful of paperback novels, a couple of DVDs… it’s better than chocolate.

Feb 112009

We’re back from a long weekend visiting my husband’s sister and her wife in Las Vegas. Kind of a fun place to visit, but not really my cup of tea, truth be told. I’m not a gambler, and I tend to be an early riser rather than a night owl, so a lot of the city’s, shall we say, ambiance is wasted on me.

There was what passes for a cold snap while we were there. Meaning it was in the 50s and on Saturday it rained. And despite the fact that we got drenched during our tour of the Boneyard at the Neon Museum, the weather was actually a very nice break from the cold and snow we’ve been used to here at home.

The Boneyard, BTW? Totally worth the $15. Even in the rain.

We stayed at the Tropicana, which has such a wonderful history and, sadly, almost completely fails to exploit it. We were hoping for echoes of the classic Vegas strip of the 50s and 60s. Instead, the place felt kind of like it doesn’t know what it is anymore, sitting in the shadows of its flashier neighbors, Excalibur, New York New York, and the MGM Grand. Perhaps if the pool had been open, the atmosphere would have been different, but that doesn’t make up for the fact that there was a huge pinkish stain in the middle of our room’s carpet.

Jan 302009

My husband’s book has come out, and is apparently doing quite well.

Unfortunately, the Andover Historical Society, where he’s been curator for the past 2-plus years, and for whom he wrote the book, has just laid him off.

Articles in the local paper here and here.

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News Flash

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Oct 112008

Just so everyone knows… Those wonderful pumpkin muffins that Dunkin Donuts makes, just in the fall? They freeze really, really well.

I wonder how many will fit in my freezer. You know, if I throw away all that other food that’s taking up space in there.

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Sep 012008

I’m several hundred miles away, and Hurricane Gustav scares me to death. I can’t imagine what this is like for anyone who survived Katrina.

I’m anxiously watching Poppy Z. Brite’s blog. Zie and hir husband, Chris, have chosen not to leave New Orleans. They’ve laid in food and water and meds and ammunition and other necessities, and they’re hunkering down with their houseful of cats to ride out the storm.

Jul 232008

Boo 2002

That was his name, really. Tonka for short, like the big yellow trucks we all used to play with as kids. Most of the time, though, we called him Boo or Boo-boo, often with the definite article. (Yes, it makes me think of the song, too: “Me and you and a dog named Boo…” But that’s a coincidence. Boo was a manglement of “boy” originally.)

We got the Boo from the woman who made my wedding dress. I’ve been married 15 years. I’ve had a dog 15 years. As of last night, I have to learn how to do one of those without the other.

We’ve been preparing ourselves this last year or so to let him go. Eventually. He was, after all, 15. He also had a degenerative neuralopathy, which meant he was slowly losing control over his back legs. And he was a bit senile. Eventually, we figured, when he was no longer enjoying his daily raid on the cat food bowl, when he stopped begging like a fool for the bits of chicken and hamburger that my mother liked to save for him, we’d have to make that hard decision.

But last night, what the vet called “twisted stomach” got him instead. He seemed OK when we got home from work. Around 10pm, he died in my arms in the back seat of the car on the way to the emergency clinic. Happens that way sometimes, apparently.

I’m just glad it didn’t happen when no one was home.

Today we’re both staying home from work so we can start learning how to live without him underfoot.

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Jul 152008

As airports go, the one at Tampa isn’t too bad. There’s the usual food and places to sit and restrooms and internet access. But it’s not on my list of places to spend a whole day. Unfortunately, when you have a connecting flight at Atlanta and Atlanta is shut down for weather…

That was Sunday. Before that, though, on Saturday, there was a cousin getting married and other cousins to visit with and my brother to hang with and lots of great food. So, you know, not entirely a bad weekend trip. Though I do find it a bit disconcerting that I seem to have become one of those people who says to younger relatives: “When I last saw you, you were only that tall.” In my defense, the cousin (once removed) I said it to is now close to 7 feet tall and married and when I last saw him he was still drinking from a bottle.

And Mom gave me a really good laugh on the way down on Friday. She had a book packed, but it wasn’t very long and she wanted to save it for reading at night in the hotel, so she went to the newsstand and got a magazine for the flight down. Told me when she came back that she doesn’t usually read trashy celebrity-watcher mags (she’s more the Time, Consumer Reports, Bon Apetit, and Cat Fancy type) but she’d picked up an issue of People. Seems she does this sometimes when she travels. But when she pulled out the magazine after we’d boarded, it turns out she’d grabbed the Miley Cyrus Collector’s Issue of the thing by mistake. Hannah Montana til you puke on your shoes.

She left the magazine in the seatback pocket. Maybe the next passenger was a 12-year-old girl?