Thursday, March 24, 2016

Retirement = Relaxation?

well, took my grandson back to live with his mom, he was homesick ... car in the shop, first clutch and now tranny ... Seder dinner tonight at church ... granddaughter and bf and 2 g-grandsons coming Sat for four days ... took lilacs to my mom's grave ... I want to get out of town and take some pictures as soon as my car comes back home, ghost towns.

I got some paint to cover the paint job I did in the kitchen that didn't work ... now I need to paint.  I need to repair the wall in my bathroom and fix the floor.

I have weeds in my front and back yard that I am slowly yanking out ... boiling water didn't work.  I'm waiting to see the results of my hand polinating worked on my nectarine tree.  I will have to transplant my tomato plants soon into the ground.  My experiment planting potatoes in a plastic basket with leaves worked.  I am picking the rest of the snow peas and need to pull the brocolli and cabbage that went to seed.  I want to take the bed head and footboard to Trina's.

I need to finish my screenplay but I'm just pulling a big blank right now ... changing my major at CSN from photography to computer crime investigation ... vision is getting wonky when I use my iPad too much ....

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

I grew up in the town of Rutland, Vermont. My parents, my three sisters and I moved from Florida to Vermont in November, 1959. I was just beginning 6th grade. I consider Rutland my home town because I spent my junior high and high school years there. Living in Vermont was nothing like anywhere I had ever lived before. It was cold, like Germany but very rural. The community was very close knit and it was difficult at first to fit in, since most of the kids I went to school with had lived there all of their lives.

Eventually I made friends with kids close to my age in the neighborhood and at school. As I slowly became part of the community I began to appreciate the benefits of living in the north east, in the third largest city in the state. One two-sided benefit was the fact that everyone knew everyone; or so it seemed. I could count on a neighbor reporting to my mom where I was and what I was doing on any given day.  Our party-line phone would ring and mom mom would always glance at me before answering, and then, finishing the call, her lips would thin and she would frown.

In Rutland I learned to ski. In the winter we would hike to the Country Club, nearly a mile away with our skis and spend the day cross country skiing or using the rope tow that would haul us up the steepest hill. As I improved I took skiing lessons at Pico Peak and Killington Mountain and was introduced to downhill runs and moguls. One winter we decided that instead of hiking down the street to the ice skating pond we would flood the back field instead and skate there.  I didn't count on the dried, grassy stalks sticking out through the ice ... it was one of many adventures that didn't work out quite the way we had planned.  As the spring melted the snow we traded snow suits and skis for boots that clomped through the mud and visited our neighbor Marie, to count the duck eggs that nestled in the enclosure in a stout nest.  Her male, Roosevelt Jackson strutted proudly about as the chicks finally emerged in June and danced in the puddles after one of our frequent thunderstorms, making sure that they stayed away from the fence and her Retriever mix, Blackie.  As the weather warmed I joined Marie at dawn, with binoculars and a lunch bag we sat near a local birding pond and identified the new arrivals from the South.

The summers were amazing as well, as I, my sisters and our friends would pack the baskets of our bikes with snacks and water and ride through the countryside. We visited the local radio station, a haunted house, a castle, a swimming hole, caves, avoided skunks, and more. The only rule was we had to be home before the street lights came on. In Vermont I learned how to play baseball too. We had a large field next to our modest two-story house, complete with a full basement with a large ping pong table, and a large attic. From April through September when not riding our bikes, we would drag bags of bats, balls and gloves into the field and spend the day fighting over teams, positions and scores. I learned how to bat, catch and throw there.

In the evenings we would trade in our baseball equipment for badminton birdies and racquets and try to avoid the bats who dove for the birdies. As I moved from Junior High School to High School pursuits changed to dances at the school and church. If my older sister and I begged hard enough our mom would take us to the Sugar Shack at Killington where underground bands played rock and roll from 6 p.m. through midnight on the the weekends.

Most of our meals were home cooked and filling; they were the meat and potato staples of the East Coast including meatless Fridays. We did occasionally enjoy lunch out at the local A&W hamburger drive-through, which was a real treat. Sodas were nearly non-existent making A&W a wonderful change. In the summer there were concerts in the park as our local musicians played in the gazebo in the center of the park and vendors sold paper bags of hot french fries with vinegar drizzled on top. Our local pizza place was also a treat and we would save up our money to spend on pickled eggs, pizza and submarine sandwiches. In September we would trek across the City to the fairgrounds where we would spend our hard earned cash from babysitting on cotton candy, hot dogs and sodas.  Our curfews were suspended when the Fair came into town and we would wander home, drunk on junk food and rides, stopping by the pizza place for one last treat before the evening ended.

During my senior year in high school I was allowed to go 'across the line with my older sister, into New York to the Hampton Manor, a club that offered alcohol if you were 18 or older. I discovered that I didn't like the taste of alcohol, but I loved to dance.  Finally my senior year drew to a close.  Finals week found my friend and I walking to school, nervous about final exams and exhilarated about our futures.  They were good days.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

you said
you'd always be here
you said
you'd never leave
you said
I am

an incomplete

an unannounced

an unsung

an unfinished

riding into eternity
on a riderless
My mother

My mother is

My mother is not

My mother is not here.

she is out shopping
she ran to the store
she went to get ice cream
she'll be back in just a....

October in Vermont 2007

October in Vermont 2007