Thursday, October 31, 2019


After the age of nine, Halloween ceased its allure. The last childhood Halloween I recall involved taking a younger and favorite cousin trick or treating.  He and his mother were staying with my family so that she could complete some necessary medical items before joining my Uncle at a new duty station in Okinawa, Japan. It was 1969 and my mother, stepfather and I had moved to our new neighborhood that August.

I had difficulty with this move, going to yet another school, missing friends and neighbors and feeling like I did not fit in. My younger cousin, then four, shadowed me and still loved the excitement of a costume and candy. Thanks to our grandmother, he was gifted with a clown suit and ruff previously worn by others in the family. I, meanwhile, was dressed as a gypsy, using an old dance costume of my mother's and some lipstick and jewelry. 

Photos were taken but for the life of me, I have no idea whatever became of them. Warned by my mother to only visit homes where the neighbors were known to us, I calculated that we'd be home in five minutes. As we set off hand in hand, Michael whispered that his neck itched and commenced scratching. By the time we reached the door of the first house and gotten an offering of candy, he looked as if a rash was overtaking one side of his neck. 

Ever the do-er, I yanked the ruff off, asking if he felt better without it and began scurrying from house to house, telling him to see how much candy he could get in the shortest amount of time since it would soon be dark. Our plastic Jacko-lantern bulged by the time we circled for home and Michael with his reddish hair and freckles matched with an impish grin had every young girl and woman's heart melting up and down our road.

I wish he were alive today to share this memory.

Below is a photo of me in 1967 dressed as a bunny.

Monday, October 28, 2019

Suburban Sprawl...

Someone is relaxed and happy 
to be home...I'm catching up on laundry, bills and letters and it has just begun to rain. Do any of you enjoy listening to the rain from the comfort of your bed?

Friday, October 25, 2019


After getting home yesterday, I put in a hard ten hours sorting, clearing, unpacking, breaking down boxes and putting out trash. My neighbor deserted me early on and a friend who transported me and stuff and got us both lunch left after telling me I could do this over several days.

That might sound like a good idea to him but he isn't in a wheelchair that takes extra space to get around in nor does he live in a small apartment or face the obstacle course that a small space becomes in these circumstances.

Thanks to another friend who came over on the fly despite the fact she had evening plans, I was able with a little help to get a lot done in one hour. The bed, made up by my male friend was cleared off, the bathroom unpacked and the kitchen and bathroom floors swept and mopped. Empty boxes were broken down and placed in outside recycling bins. We also unpacked bagged up sheets and towels. It is amazing what two can do!

I will be washing dishes later today, Meantime, it's back to bed for a bit.


Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Enjoying his time away...

My boy is apparently very popular among the vets and nurses at his vet's office. He is eating well, talking and trilling and happy to play with a willing person while enjoying some kitty television.

Miss me much?

I meanwhile had a bit of hotel hijinx. My original reservation, made over one month ago for a hotel in my neighborhood, was changed by the manager after his contractor failed to meet a deadline for first floor renovation by my date of check-in yesterday. Happily, the whole situation was handled nicely and professionally by all involved and I had an accessible suite at another place within the hour.

This hotel is clean, quiet, well appointed and has the nicest hospitality staff I've ever had the pleasure of meeting. Though only breakfast is provided, it is ample. My lunch, dinner and homemade snacks were provided by another of my friends who insisted upon doing so gratis. Thus far, I have been fortunate in what could have been a very stressful situation. 

So far, I've had a very restful night, some time in the sun with  book, paid bills and caught up with several people by phone. Had I a swim suit, I'd try the pool. For essentially being stuck somewhere until the gaseous cloud clears at home, I'm very relaxed!

Sunday, October 13, 2019

And Now...

You may remember the seven pieces of missing mail mentioned in my last post and how I had reported the situation to the manager of my post office.

As of today, that mail has never shown up at my door nor does the manager know where it might be. The investigation has gone beyond delivery points and that post office itself to the mail plant. I will hear something within a few days.

My friend in the UK is mailing a second letter to me this week. Fingers crossed that it actually arrives.

Meanwhile, I am busily packing valuables, papers, open foodstuffs and the cat so we can depart our abode next week while this building is tented for termites. This is one of those times I wish I did not live in in a State known for its variety of bugs and reptiles.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

On the trail of my missing mail...

Have any of you ever had an entire stack of mail fail to reach your address? Perhaps, like a friend did recently, you have received a battered-by-machine letter or card in a plastic sleeve with apologies from the postal service. It happens, unfortunately, thanks to their automated systems.

However, six or seven pieces of mail for one date getting waylaid is unusual. Because I have a free service known as Informed Delivery, photos are taken of the mail scheduled for drop off at my address. Should something fail to turn up after a week, users of the service are urged to report the missing mail online.

My experience with this is that it accomplishes nothing. This mail including a letter from the United Kingdom, has been missing for just over one week. Today, I had the pleasure of speaking to three postal employees, two of whom gave me the wrong numbers for reaching my branch post office from which mail to my address is dispatched. Disgusted but determined, I called a nearby postal annex where I was given two more numbers, one of which got me to the correct branch and a professional manager to whom I quickly explained the situation.

She was polite and appeared to know what she was doing. Notes and contact information were taken and within the hour, a letter carrier appeared at my door saying he had been sent to check the mailbox for the empty unit in my building and found nothing for me there. Now, further steps will be taken and I should know something in a couple of days.

Whether the mail will actually be found, I have no idea. The volume of mail in this country is still tremendous and it amazes me that more does not go wrong. Problems are still worth reporting though I'll make it a point to mention the difficulties I had getting to the correct individual when I speak with her again. In the meantime, if you send and receive mail, locate the post office from which it is delivered, get the number for that location, learn the manager's name and keep it. It may come in handy.