Hello Sweet Things,
I know "shock"! I'm posting again, well I'll continue to do so, but it may be sporadic, but when I can 'steal' a few minutes I will.
Work continues to be very hectic, with all the upheaval in the middle East we have to be on our toes here, oil prices are shaky, and for now will go up, until the situation stabilizes. California's requirements for it's "special blend" is not helping---"special blend" is such a joke.
Many of my co-workers are taking public transportation to and from work instead of using their cars, or are car-pooling if it works. Myself, I use bus and Bart, unless I need to get here very early. One of my neighbors takes the ferry into work and drives to the terminal and we try to co-ordinate going together when possible. It works, I don't worry about coming home the same time she does, but I do enjoy the ferry when I can.
And right now I have to rely on my feet or the kindness of neighbors or Joe when his schedule permits.
Reason?? My car was totalled!! I'm fine, just a sprained wrist, a concussion and a few scratches but my car will not be drivable again. Thank God for air bags. Had to spend a couple of days in the hospital and I have to go in for check ups, the headaches were the worse but they have gotten much better, I'm not going to elaborate but, I was at a stop light, it went green I had the right of way and someone didn't pay attention that it was my turn. The good thing is that I was hit from the passenger side, if it was the driver's side it could have been much worse for me.
Poor Joe, he was sick with worry, Mother came up by plane (brave lady), Joe picked her up and she stayed with me for a week, but I was back to work part-time, after a few days bed rest, my assistant took care of shifting some appointments and my co-workers took care of those that couldn't be shifted and followed my notes.
Joe felt frustrated that he couldn't be with me because of his job, I told him to not worry and just call in when he had free time. Which was often. Love that man. He and Lillian shopped for me, Mother cooked and made friends with Lillian, those two were having the nicest chats I was told, while I napped.
My lap top was totaled as well, then dealing with insurance, getting a new lap top, recovering the information on my old one, getting a new cell phone (mine had disappeared) and discontinuing service to the old one, now I am going on a car hunt. Of course I need one that gets good mileage, is dependable, comfortable for me to drive(especially on long trips), and not difficult to repair---Toyota need not apply.
One very pleasant thing, my neighbor (he of the crashing tree into my home) his wife travels into the City for her work, she usually leaves the same time I do but she likes the ferry, so frequently I've been going with her to the ferry terminal, but she comes home earlier than I and there are times when I have to work late, so depending upon my situation I'll take the ferry at a later time or come back by Bart and Bus.
Their two daughters are so nice and helpful, Lillian and I have watched them when their parents go out, and they are "Scrabble" demons, keeps me on my toes. They are not babies but now are 10 and 12 I think, for safety reasons they can't be left home alone but the girls seem to enjoy being with Lillian and Me or sometimes it's just me and on occasion also Joe. He cannot keep up with them on Scrabble.
About a new car, Joe suggested a Mini-Cooper or a VW Jetta---I couldn't see myself in a Mini-Cooper--too mini for my taste. The Jetta has a good track record, but so does the Honda, we'll see.
Mother has gone back home now that I've fully recovered, but I will continue to see my doctor, and this weekend is the Oakland Museum White Elephant Sale.
And what an event that is!
There are no words to describe possibly the biggest, most fantastic annual Garage Sale held here in the Bay Area, it is one event you Must plan on every year.
Saturday Morning, I get a wake up call from Lillian at "Oh My God it's Early"---- "Rise and Shine Sunshine" she says, which means I have only 30 minutes to shower, dress and pack a thermos of coffee and dash to her place (wearing my most comfortable running shoes).
Lillian and her Great-Granddaughter Heather (Heather is staying with Lillian while she goes to U.C. Berkley and keeps an eye on Lillian along with Esperanza her housekeeper) are revving up the Dodge Caravan and I jump in. We get to the handicapped parking in time to snag one of the coveted handicapped spots. Heather just bristles (she's driving) if anyone parks too close to the car that Lillian can't get out. But with a side sliding door that is not too much of a problem.
Then we wait, already there are food vendors, serving everything from Hot Coffee and Chocolate with pastries to some of the best Burritos in the World. Although an old Factory area it is slowly becoming gentrified, but neighbors that live in some of the former workers Victorian homes, take advantage selling soft drinks, popcorn, chips, and having their own yard sales, some of the business around there will open their parking lots for $10 a parking spot and they get their money. Even one person opened his back yard and had space for 5 parking spots and made money.
On the side where the handicapped parking is we have porta johns, and it's not so crowded to get into the building but on the other side, the line snaked for 5 blocks!! Then its 10 a.m. time to start the sale, the roller doors go up, volunteer staffers stand in front until the announcement, then across the expanse of the huge warehouse, you can hear a cheer and it's "GAME ON!!" Lillian has her handicapped walker with wheels ready to go, and we rush in.
We use our cell phones to keep in touch, Heather stays with Lillian and Lillian tells me go ahead and grab anything she might like. I head to accessories, and find some wonderful vintage purses, and other things, Lillian joins me and sees the perfect belt that she wants.
We made out like "Bandits", Heather found some Barbie dolls that she can use in her art projects and other things that she could use. I know that baby sis and Mother will love what I was able to get, I wandered to another area and spotted something that I had to get, a regulation holster for a 4 inch barrel with low positioned belt, it also had the holders for cuffs and mags, it dawned on me that it was for a left handed person or a motorcycle cop. I bought it.
I went over to where they have stationary and office supplies and met Lillian there who was picking up her supply of Christmas cards. I found some things I could use at home, such as a card file for various occasion cards.
When we had too many bags, Heather and I would put them into the car and head on back, while Lillian would go and tackle another area.
The Jewelry counter was jammed packed, 4 deep, once you wiggled your way into a spot you worked it for all it's worth, and I found 3 beautiful pins. I also manged to buy a beautiful cocktail ring, 18 K with a large Amethyst. Talk about Luck, it was buried under some other items and had been over looked.
Finally the three of us sat down, rested and reviewed our situation. Lillian was done and wanted to go back to the car, Heather wanted to still check out some art work and I wanted to looked at a couple of areas again. With Lillian made comfortable we went back and with a more leisurely eye I spotted a lamp with a intact shade that would be perfect for my living room, Heather found two paintings that she coveted, back in accessories I found a beautiful hand mirror, brush and comb set, the set had jars for various things like powder and such in a beautiful blue and rose enamel, it had been buried under some handkerchiefs in the case, I knew it would be perfect for Mother go I got it.
One thing I did was write out checks to the W.E.S. this way it was easier for me to use as tax deductions.
Tired, and hungry (again) after 3 hours of shopping in the wildest of sales, we carefully made our way out of the area, Oakland P.D. was there to direct traffic, we discovered that even 3 hours after the show had opened there was still a line 3 blocks long of people waiting to get in!
Heather looked at me as we waited for an opening to move the car out and said "Are they crazy??" I started to laugh, with that even she knew how absurd her remark was.
We debated where we wanted to go and grab lunch, Heather said she wanted a Hamburger from "In and Out Burgers" but I suggested "Nations" since we could right now get strawberry tarts there. Nations it was. I never new a Hamburger could taste so good. Yes, back to the Gym again.
We returned home, and even though I was tired I prevailed upon Lillian's good graces for me to borrow her car so I could do some grocery shopping, Lillian gave me her grocery list as well and we tucked her down for a nap, Heather and I braved the insane parking at the Safeway--Trader Joe's area.
Using our insulated bags we could keep our refrigerated foods cold, as we braved the sales at the Border's Book Store that was closing with things now 20 to 50% discounted. In terms of books I didn't find anything that had me anxious to buy, but Heather found an art book that she was interested in at a good 40 % discount.
We returned to our respective houses, putting away our foods, when Heather came by again saying she was feeling restless, frankly I felt the same way, with going to Office Max, an Antique co-op, Office Depot, picking up some collectible soda pop bottles at Nob Hill (with the soft drink for consumption), I filled up the Car at the Nob Hill gas station, Heather still was restless, I asked her if she was on something, but no she said she just was tired of going from home to school to home to school and this felt like freedom.
Understanding her feelings we drove down Doolittle drive which fronts along part of the inlet behind our island city, she had brought her art pencils and started sketching the bird sanctuary, zeroing in on a cormorant that perched on an old piling. Her art work is beautiful. Using her camera she took photos of the bird and the area for reference, and told me that she'll see if she can work it in watercolors and oils.
I suggested that we go to Rasputin's and see what CDs we could find, and called Lillian, Esperanza was there putting in a few hours and said that Lillian was awake and had some tea, so I told Lillian where we were going and she asked me to check on some DVD's for her.
Going out to Rasputin's Heather told me that although she loved art and had talent she wasn't sure if she could make money at it. I told her about Owen Smith a local artist who has done magazine covers, murals, book coveres and illustrations and has sold his independent work.
She had seen his works but she wasn't sure if she could get the breaks. I suggested that she look at a business degree because she would need it to understand what it would take to sell her art work and with such a degree as a major with art as a minor, she could still work and pursue art, that there were various outlets that she could examine until she could finally get a "toe-hold" in the art world, it wouldn't happen over night, but it would happen.
This gave her a lot of options she reasoned, and felt much brighter about what to do. At Rasputin's, we leisurely took our time looking over the music and movies and found a couple of the DVD's that Lillian wanted. Driving home taking what I call "the scenic route", we called Lillian and were informed that Esperanza had made a huge pot of stew for dinner with rice.
Relaxing after a delicious dinner we looked over our finds ooooing and awwwing over them. Later this week I'll need to box those things I got for Mother and baby sis, I'm still deciding to either mail them or take them down with me when I visit for Easter, depending upon whether I have a car or not. If I take the train I can put them in my suitcases, which is an option to consider.
This morning I slepted in, Joe had pulled another double shift although we kept in touch via cell phone, and he is still sleeping as I type this. I left the police issue holster out for him to see and found a note attached to it---"PERFECT!!" it said. That made me smile.
In an hour he is going to wake up and we are going car shopping. I don't think I'll find what I want right away, but at least with my consumer's reports I'll at least know what I'm looking for.
And yes, Sweet Things this was a long post, but so much has happened and will happen, so I think my posts will be long. At this time I do not forsee my going on many trips, the demands at work and my Doctor's insistance about my staying close to home until she can give me a full bill of health it going to cramp my style.
And so is a Jury summons---yes---a summons for Jury Duty was in my mail box when I came home---Pooh!! So I'll have to see how cramped my style is going to be. Well if I do get on a Jury I hope it will be an interesting case.
So for now Sweet Things, stay dry and warm. Kisses
And yes Sweet Fram, I still am "Windy" ;-)