Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Santa’s Little Helpers

Working on the closet won out as yesterday’s activity and, in the process, I was able to let go of a few items I could not part with during previous efforts. I also found my minion goggles.

Once again, it was a situation of not putting items in their proper place.

After last year’s Halloween 5K in haunted Creek park, instead of putting the goggles with the costume, I’d evidently put them inside the minion backpack, which backpack went into a container in the far recesses of the closet and was promptly forgotten about until, after pulling out and weeding through all the other containers yesterday, I spied a container in the back and the minion backpack inside.

Deciding I no longer needed that particular backpack and could donate, something told me to look inside and voilá, there the goggles were.

I’d recently ordered replacement goggles, don’t like ‘em because they're glasses instead of goggles, so now that I have my original goggles back, I’ll stick the replacements in the backpack for the next owner – probably a child. It’s practically brand new, only used once, and is animated talk-n-play.




I’m still left with far too many containers holding far too much stuff – knickknacks, diet cookbooks, spiritual literature, clothing, cds, but this will to do until the next time I decide to weed out or find an organization interested enough to pick up for free -- but just the cookbooks and cds.

On the way to the mailbox in the afternoon, I walked past the door to the Community Room and was delighted to see a couple Santa’s Helpers had stepped in to handle the decorations.



There were actually four Helpers, doing quite a good job. So I’m off the hook on that one.

On tap for today is dropping off a couple pairs of high heels, boots, purses and that backpack at a donation center. While I’m out and about, since a lot of walking is not advisable, I’ll check for PokéStops in the area, drive to and collect balls from the car.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Unh uh, Noooo!

Now that everything that needs to be done is done, I’m having a hard time sitting still, not getting out walking, hunting Pokémon.

What’s holding me up is that stress fracture.

The left foot has been doing very well last few days. Walking around inside the unit, I don’t feel anything at all. Running errands outside on concrete and asphalt, I know it’s there because of a slight tenderness. After the agony felt after the Turkey Trot, I don’t want to go backwards in recovery, so I’m trying my best not to head to the campus today, park on the side street, walk to and around the university hitting up PokéStops – which I really need to do because I’m low on balls and because the Thanksgiving offer of double points ends in three days.

Of course I’ve that needlepoint project to distract me from rolling the dice, heading to the university. I’ve also a ton of recorded television programs needing to be viewed, and I’m also thinking about taking everything out of the closet, weeding out, reorganizing.

I can also head down to the Community Room, hang out with the folks, needlepoint and watch TV from there, but I’d rather walk and hurt myself than do that, because of what happened in the 2:00 Residents’/Management meeting we had yesterday afternoon.

The new Community Manager asked for volunteers to decorate for Christmas. I looked around to see who was responding to the request, saw no hands going up, but noticed a lot of folks looking at me.

WTF?!

No way was I volunteering.

Doing my patio was one thing, decorating the offices and the Community Room quite another.

Even after the meeting, as I was leaving, The Seer call my name, loudly, from clear across the room. I turned … “What?”

“Volunteer” she ordered.

“Uh uh, noooo”.

Someone will do it. I’m just gonna lay low until it’s done.

Also discussed in the meeting was a Cookie Swap for next month.

I’m in, but need to decide if I want to go through all the trouble of melted snowmen again or take the easy way out with Trader Joe’s slice and bake Ginger and Chocolate Chip Cookies.

I did the slice and bake my first year here at the complex and the cookies went fast.


Cookie Swap 2012

Due to Nurse Ratched coming in and the demise of activities, there were no further cookie swaps until The Baker organized one last year. I made melted snowmen.




The snowmen were slow to go because folks were enthralled and opted to admire and take photos instead of scarfing down.

So, I dunno. Guess I’ll decide which to make closer to the date, but I’m leaning towards slice and bake.

Also brought to our attention at yesterday’s session was an upcoming event – a December 23rd Christmas Luncheon.

Speaking for the Activity Director, the Community Manager described the event as “everything is to be provided for you.”

Fool me once.

We just had the Thanksgiving fiasco which Activity Director indicated would be catered, everything provided, but ended up a turkey, no sides, with Activity Director shopping for instant mashed potatoes, canned gravy, and box cornbread mix minutes before the event was to start.

I’m skeptical, but we’ll see.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Stringing in the Rain

My inside space is my own again.

Christmas is outside, on the patio … where it belongs.

Up at 2:30 yesterday morning, I couldn’t handle sitting around all day, doing nothing -- because of the weather, when there were things needing to be done.

It wasn’t full on rain, just drizzling when -- at 8:00, I went out onto the patio and began stringing lights.

Neighbors walking through the quad were highly amused … “Ha ha, you’re stringing lights in the rain?”

“It’s only drizzling”, said I.

Once the lights were in place, I lit them up but didn’t see any shimmer. They looked like regular lights to me which, in all fairness may have been because it was daytime and the shimmer would have shown up at night. Either way, I wasn’t thrilled because one strand of 200 wasn’t giving me enough coverage.



Sorta reminds me of Charlie Brown’s Christmas Tree … sparse; but no way was I spending an additional $100 for two more strands, so it was what it was, I’d live with it and moved on to setting up the gift boxes.

I opened the box containing the three white and gold and what do you know … stuffed down inside one of the three were my string lights.



That’s what happens when I don’t put things in their proper place.

I guess I was saving space last year by stuffing the lights inside the gift box, but not remembering I had done so threw me off this year.

At any rate, I no longer needed the shimmering lights so, patio decorations done by 9:30, it still only drizzling, I boxed them back up, put on my boots, rain jacket, grabbed an umbrella and returned the lights to Lowe’s, along with the Timer I thought would work better than my remote control thingy, but didn’t.

Stopping at the Dollar Tree in that area, I was finally successful, located and crossed off my list that birthday money card.

Gifting would be so much less complicated if everyone drank coffee and I could do all my shopping at Starbucks.

On the way back to the complex, the rain did come, but by then everything that needed to be done was done and I spent the remainder of the day relaxing on the couch, sipping coffee, watching the rain, enjoying everything in its proper place.

So go on and laugh yourselves silly dear neighbors. My seasonal work is done, yours yet to be. Maybe mine will draw in carole singers, as it did last year.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

It’s All About the Shimmer

Yesterday’s rain wasn’t long, but it was hard.

I’d manage to get my hair done, shop for the money birthday card – with no luck, pick up Christmas lights for the patio and was on the freeway headed back to the complex when the rain hit. And what hit was like a storm, drops coming down fast, hard, hitting the windshield with a thud that had me thinking it was hail; and there was wind, wind as equally aggressive as the hail sounding rain drops.

Awake at 2:30 this morning, for no good reason except that’s how it’s been (anywhere from 2:15 to 4:30) since the time change, I was anxious to get the day started but was thwarted first by having to wait until the rest of the world decided to get up and get going, and secondly unable to map out the day because everything is dependent upon whether today will be more rain or not.

Christmas lights having been purchased, I’m anxious to violate my lease agreement by attaching them to the patio railing and get the Christmas decorations out-of-my inside space.

That’s not gonna happen if it rains.

I also need to return a Timer to Lowe’s and do more searching for the money birthday card.

That too will not happen if it rains.

About those lights … I very nearly got out of Lowe’s with perfectly reasonably priced string lights that I could loop and drape on the railing to look like string lights, but dilly dallied around window shopping in the Christmas department and walked up on these …




Oh why not, thought I. It’s twice as much as I planned to pay for lights, but they’re pretty and as close to Disney as I’ll get before I leave this earth, because I refuse to pay $100 to stand in lines so long I don’t get to experience my money's worth of attractions.

Would you believe, in one of the memory albums, there are souvenirs from my last visit ... 19 years ago?




I spent all my time going through Small World over and over and over, and the Michael Jackson exhibit.

At any rate, while at the checkout stand, two girls from neighboring checkouts, having a lull in customers, sauntered over to converse with my cashier. One of the girls picked up the box, looked it over, said, “Hmmm. I wonder what makes it Disney?” (Because there no mouse ears and the lights look so similar to all the other lights in Lowe's).

“The price”, said I.

There was laughter all around, and a “Right, huh”.

Then my cashier picked up the box, examined more closely, said, “They shimmer. You’re paying for the shimmer honey.”

I didn’t even notice the lights are to shimmer, whatever shimmer is. I was hypnotized by the way they draped, got caught up in the moment, spent way too much and now am anxious to get them in place to determine if the shimmer is worth it enough not to exercise my option to return.

If it doesn't rain.

Friday, November 25, 2016

The Struggle Was Real

Woke up this morning feeling like absolute crap. My stomach was upset from having ingested dressing and gravy at the potluck made not with the safe for me garbanzo bean flour, cassava flour or almond meal flour.

I brought my own homemade cranberry sauce, and thus avoided the deadly high fructose corn syrup, but rolled the dice, lost and paid the price for giving into the delicious two types of stuffing and two types of gravy, plus my foot hurt like crazy.

Limping through the unit, feeling sorry for myself, the plan for today was to wallow in my misery. But after breakfast, a couple tablespoons Milk of Magnesium, a warm bath, finding an old pair of sandals with soft cushiony padding to take the pressure off the foot, I was over it and ready to seize the sun-filled day – starting with a run by Starbucks and then tackling the Christmas stuff.

In order to get to the Christmas decorations, I had to first relocate storage cartons containing sewing/needlepoint supplies, scrapbooking supplies, cosplay outfits from the storage closet to the living room.





While those containers were cluttering up the living room, I decided to rest a little by going through and weeding out items no longer needed.

Wasn’t much, but I did manage to pare two sewing/needlepoint containers down to one.

Now able to get to Christmas supplies, back of the storage area, I began dragging the lighted gift boxes inside, assembling those.







Then, planning on adding the string lights to the patio railing before dragging out the Christmas Tree, I tackled the green container and what do you know … no lights.

Tossed them?

Gave then away?

I just don’t remember. It’s a mystery.

I do know Nurse Ratched was on a rampage last year about “affixing items to the patio railings” but I’d never been hassled with a lease violation for the Christmas lights. Perhaps I decided not to risk it another year and did decide to get rid of them.

However, inasmuch as Nurse Ratched is now in our rear view, I need to head to Walmart, Costco or Lowes for lights before I can go any further with the patio, but today is Black Friday and no way was I risking the crowds, the lines, the chaos for a couple strings of light.

So today I lived with the clutter.




Probably will be living with the clutter tomorrow as well, as I have an appointment with the locktician to have my braids retightened on Saturday. After which I’ll shop for that birthday money card and lights, arriving back at the complex too late to finish the patio.

The clutter will be around until Monday, but at least I’m halfway there.

With nothing else to be done today, I took a nice long nap, awoke with the foot no longer hurting, stomach settled, glad I didn’t waste the day wallowing.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving



Looking back at what I’d blogged this time last year, I was doing laundry and pulling Christmas stuff out of storage.

There is laundry to be done and, if I want to get the patio decorated on the traditional Day after Thanksgiving, I need to be hauling Christmas stuff out of storage; but this year I put all that on the back burner and participated in the 2nd Annual Riverside Turkey Trot at Fairmount Park.

The 5K took off precisely as scheduled -- 8:45 this morning. Most 5Ks are scheduled for 7 a.m. Why such a late start, I do not know; but 8:45 to an early riser like myself is like afternoon already.

At any rate, though my foot is of course still bothering me, didn’t feel great during the race, worse after, I managed the trail, including three steep inclines, and finished with my best time in a long time.





I also ran into a cluster of Electabuzz and captured eight of ‘em.




I got lots of compliments on my costume which, you will note, included the bonnet.




I had no intentions of wearing the bonnet, because I thought it made me look like I should be the photo on a box of pancake mix or a bottle of maple syrup. However, daughter liked the bonnet, encouraged me to wear so I got comfortable with it and ended up liking it myself.

Daughter also felt, because of all the compliments, I’d win the costume contest. Thus the fast pace … rushing me along so we’d get to the finish line in time for said contest.




She might as well have paced me at a take-our-time stroll, because the win went to the kids dressed as turkeys. I wasn’t disappointed. Winning always means a lot more to kids than to us adults. The crowd knew that and hooted and hollered that way. Besides, the prize was only free admission to next year’s 5K.

And let me add, daughter did not know about the problem with the foot. Had she known, she would not have rushed me and probably would have grounded me altogether.

Daughter is already looking forward to the 2017 Trot.

Me? … I don’t know. They’ll probably be laundry to do and Christmas stuff to lug out of storage.

I had facebook friends at the race, but there were so many people that we never found each other.


Looking at the bib numbers, I'm guessing around 3,000 participants


I did, however, meet a family whose headgear got a giggle out of me.




And saw some cute “Run now, Gobble later” socks, to match a turkey-themed tutu.




After returning to the complex, I iced my foot, caught a nap and headed to the Community Room for the potluck.

It didn’t disappoint.


Turkey, Ham, Potatoes, Stuffing, Yams

It was a good thing I stuck to bringing cranberry sauce because the other woman who'd signed up for cranberry sauce did as other had expected and failed to show up.



Sunday, November 20, 2016

Life Goes On

Where did the morning go?

Up at 6:00, I ran a few quick errands after breakfast and, when I began feeling hungry again, looked at my watch and realized it was noon already.

Time is really flying these days.

I wasn’t supposed to be out running errand, because I picked up a stress fracture in my left foot at the Mission Inn Run and the doctor ordered a limit to my activities. But life goes on, and having not the luxury of someone to do for me, I still have to be on my feet to do housework, cooking, market runs and this morning it was off to Walmart to pick up prints from the Mission Inn Run.

When walking on uneven asphalt at the run, I became aware it was causing my foot and ankles to wobble. I quickly moved towards the middle of the road to a smoother area, but I guess it was too late because, over the next few days, both ankles began to feel weak and my left foot began to throb.

Because the world isn’t going to stop for me, “limit your activities” will be giving up PokémonGo hunting for the next few days, while everything else is as usual.

After picking up the prints this morning, I stopped by Starbucks.

The display of Christmas Cups designed by customers is up.




For my Canadian reader, your countryman made the cut.




Is he now famous over there?

You all will be amazed to know this morning was only my third trip to Starbucks since the middle of October.

Cutting back on caffeine wasn’t planned, it just happened.

Passing CVS on the way back to the complex, I recalled SilverWillow suggested I might find a Christmas Money Card there.

Good call, they had plenty.

But wouldn't you know, an event has come up -- an event which is taking me to an overnight in Long Beach on the 10th of December, and requires yet another birthday money card.

CVS had none.

So now it’s back to the Dollar Tree to see if they’ve more in stock and/or the other locations Silver Willow suggested.

But not today or this week, because I am going to try to stay off my feet next few days so I can complete Thursday’s Turkey Trot, which I am determined to do.

The Turkey Trot is a costumed event. While daughter is planning on wearing Thanksgiving colors, I had no plans of trying to come up with yet another costume, opting instead to wear pretty much what I’d worn at the Mission Inn Run, until I remembered having purchased a Pilgrim Outfit two or three years ago.

After accepting delivery of the outfit, I didn’t like it, didn’t return it, tossed it into a storage container along with tutus, Wonder Woman, Bat Girl and Captain America gear.

Digging through the container, I found it.



You can see why I didn’t wear it. The long apron would have been too difficult to race in and the bonnet would make me look too dorky.

However, the plan now is to cut and sew the apron down to wearable length, lose the bonnet and sexy the outfit up with leggings and a sleeveless tank top, rather than long sleeves.

Looking at the event flyer, there's beer at the end of the 5K. I don't drink, but I just might give beer a try.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Thanksgiving Luncheon

Well that could not have gone any worse.

Fifty residents signed up for the 11:00 to 1:00 event, which event we were led to believe was management’s gift to its residents.

Arriving at 10:15 to get a good seat since so many had signed up, I walked out at 11:15 and drove to El Pollo Loco for a “fresh from the grill” lunch, at which time there were only 18 residents in attendance.

Backing up to the beginning -- arriving at 10:15, I found seven already seated and learned “no” it isn’t El Pollo, it’s a turkey from Honey Baked and “no” it isn’t catered -- the Activity Director purchased the turkey from Honey Baked and now needs to warm it up.

Okay, I can deal with that.

Then I learned Activity Director had forgotten to bring napkins, and there were no sides – nothing but the turkey.

The Baker ran to her unit and brought back a couple cans of cranberry sauce.

Speaking of which, the other resident who’d signed up for cranberry sauce for the event on the 24th was in attendance and when I told her I’d already signed up and purchased three cans, graciously said, “I’ll bring something else.”

I think she’ll probably forget. Others said not to worry about it, because she won’t even show up.

At any rate, questioning those who’d arrived before I did as to why there were no sides, I was told where we all thought the event was catered, the Activity Director seemed dumbfounded that we so thought and had expected us to bring side dishes.

We didn’t just “think” it, there was no mention of sides on the calendar or sign-up sheet and even the Activity Director herself had indicated it was either El Pollo Loco or turkey -- “It’s something corporate is thinking of doing for all its properties”.

Now she says she didn’t say that, which has seriously damaged her credibility. Where she’d been looking for more participation, she will now end up with less.

To rectify the lack of sides situation, Activity Director took off in her car to the market to shop for napkins, frozen veggies, instant mashed potatoes, canned gravy, boxed cornbread mix.

Residents speculated the cornbread was to take the place of stuffing -- that we could put gravy on it.

I’d never thought of gravy on cornbread, might be tasty but at 11:15, when there was talk of further delay whenever Activity Director returned from her shopping expedition, because it would take time to cook those items, I decided instant mashed potatoes and canned gravy wasn’t worth my time.

I turned on the cellphone, located the nearest El Pollo Loco, drove to and picked up lunch to be eaten in the peace calm non chaotic atmosphere of my unit.

I doubt those who stayed and waited it out were as disappointed as I, their logic being “something is better than nothing".

For me, sometimes that’s true, just not yesterday when I had better things I could have done with my time.

So now the potluck residents have planned for the 24th is looking better. It can’t turn out any worse than yesterday did and, generally, when we do our own thing the event is successful.

Talking to my next door neighbor later, who had attended and stayed because, “I was hungry and can use the leftover turkey with Stove Top”, about 25 showed up, service began a little after noon, and “The pie from Stater Bros was good”.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Color Me Annoyed

The sign-up sheet for the potluck, slated for the 24th, was posted in a highly visible place – on the Community Room refrigerator door, directly in front of the entry way to the kitchen, highly visible from the counter where the coffee machine and free goodies are kept.

You couldn’t miss it.

In fact, that’s how I became aware of the event.

There’s always free giveaways at 5Ks which, if it’s not something my sensitive stomach can handle, I drop off at the counter in the Community Room. So dropping off the fruit/nut bars and bags of caramelized popcorn from the Mission Inn Run, I spotted the sign-up sheet.

Evidently, though you couldn’t miss the sign-up sheet, it went unnoticed, because no other name but mine appeared over the last few days.

Checking back yesterday, to see how the sign up was going, I observed still no other name but mine. However, to rectify the situation, the organizers had posted yet another sign-up sheet on the table underneath the big screen television.

To me, this is a less visible location, but it appears to have worked because others have signed up, one for cranberry sauce.

If the organizers were going to go with two sign-up sheets, logic dictates duplicates would occur. What they should have done is to have written my name in as already signed-up for cranberry sauce.

Color me annoyed, especially since three cans of cranberry sauce have already been purchased.

The way I see it, I have three options.

1.       Take my name off the first sign-up sheet and don’t attend.
2.      Ask the other resident bringing cranberry sauce to please bring something else.
3.      Bring something else myself and be stuck with three cans of cranberry sauce I can’t eat -- because the high fructose corn syrup ingredient would cause terrible stomach pains. (I have to make my own chutney from cranberries and an orange).

The Thanksgiving Luncheon management is gifting us residents is today at 11:00. I’ll think on my options, see how today’s luncheon goes, and then decide if I want to bother with the potluck or go with one of the other options. I might also add it's not unusual for folks to sign up for a dish and then not show-up. 

So there's always the possibility that, if I drop out or bring something else, the other might not show and cranberry sauce is off the menu completely.

I feel the potluck turning into a complete cluster you-know-what. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Say Hello to My Little Friend



Actually, not just a friend, it’s my Great Grandchild – granddaughter’s latest baby, a six to eight week old Chihuahua mix named Ebony.

Someone moving out of her complex said she couldn’t care for the pup any longer and literally threw her into granddaughter’s arms.

At least this person didn’t simply abandon the pup, with no food, no water, which is how my first Great Grandchild came to be.



Two years ago, residents moved out of an apartment, abandoned Patches -- a Jack Russell Terrier mix, then about the same age as Ebony is now. The people moved out on a weekend, leaving him alone in the apartment, to be discovered by management two or three days later.

Granddaughter quickly took custody and, between granddaughter and daughter, he’s become one pampered spoiled pooch.

Will be interesting to see how he adapts to having a sister.

Here at the complex, it appears we’ll be having two Thanksgiving Dinners.

We have the event scheduled by management this Friday, the 18th, which I’m hoping the menu is El Pollo Loco, and probably is because The Baker, The Seer and Apache have organized a Potluck for Friday the 24th.

The sign-up sheet reads, “The Turkey will be here. We need sides.”

I’ve been too preoccupied with my 5Ks and PokémonGo to check into the Community Room, spend time with the folks to keep up with the happenings, but I’m assuming they know something I don’t know – that El Pollo is on the menu for the 18th but they’re bound and determined to bring a turkey into the mix.

The potluck is the same day as the Turkey Trot, but isn’t until 4:00, by which time I’ll be long home and rested.

Ordinarily, I’d make my signature deviled eggs -- designed to look like turkeys, but I’m still miffed that no one had sufficient spirit to wear a costume for the Halloween function, so I’m not putting myself out for these no costume wearing folks. I signed up for cranberry sauce – canned.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Persona Non Grata

Looking at the official results from Sunday’s 5K, I did very well with time, but was too close to last in my age group, only managing to out-walk three others.




I don’t know how many men were in my age group. I’m sure they were in the crowd, but I didn’t see any elderly looking gentlemen. I did see two women who looked to be around my age or older. One was running the race.

That always boggles my mind they can do that. I’ve always wanted to run but, even at a young age, was never able to.

On the other hand, running isn’t the best for the body at any age, often times resulting in hip and knee replacements.

I worked for an attorney -- an avid runner with the lean body I so envied runners, who had a heart attack while out jogging. My dental hygienist, a woman around my age, had a similar experience while out jogging. The list goes on and on, with The Archeologist telling me of a run through a canyon where she always stops at a particular point and looks over to see if any runners have passed out and fallen over the cliff, as it’s where so many have been found.

I think I mentioned in an earlier post about my first year at the Spooktacular, where a runner fell to the ground and began having spasms just after crossing the finish line.

In fact, James Fuller -- the author of The Complete Book of Running, who is credited with “popularizing the sport of running”, himself died of a heart attack at 52 years of age … while jogging.

So though I am in awe of those who run, envy their lean no body fat bodies, I’ll settle for my fluffy body and being able to walk the races.

On another topic, I received the Dealer Satisfaction Survey this past Friday and gave them 4 out of 5 Stars and 9 out of 10 Points on “Would You Recommend”.

Surprise, surprise … the review rolled over into Yelp … with a photo!

Oh oh … it’s one thing to write a review and have just your name associated, but now everyone at the dealership knows my face.

Service Department can’t be too mad about my honesty. Perhaps it will bring about a change.

I’d complained to Corporate years ago about a nightmare experience – where I’d waited for 4 hours, only to discover they’d forgotten to work on my car. How other customers had sat for hours with no notification their cars had long been ready, and how they actually lost one woman’s car altogether.

That’s right … they lost a car, with records showing the car had already been picked up.

They gave her a loaner but, to this day, I wonder if her car was ever located.

It was the first and only time I’d had a bad experience at the dealer, but it was so egregious that I’d murdered them on the Satisfaction Survey, which resulted in a contact and apology from Corporate, and my next service completely free of charge.

This time wasn’t that serious, so I don’t expect anything other than Service might take care of my car sooner rather than later next visit. On the other hand, my face is sure to be recognized and remembered by Sales, which makes me their No. 1 persona non grata.

I have no idea where the photo came from, how it was captured and plugged in, but at least it’s a good shot.



Sunday, November 13, 2016

Mission Inn Run

Today’s 5K turned into a family affair.





My youngest daughter (five minutes younger than her fraternal twin from whom we are both now estranged) has been doing the Mission Inn Run for the last three years. This being my first, I let her know I’d registered and would be joining her.

She was excited and took care of package pickup.




My bib number (Two thousand six hundred seventy six) was a clue this was going to be a fun event, with lots and lots of participants.

It was.

Walking to the start line, I ran into two friends from the run/walk group I’m involved with.




These are the same two I ran into at the Spooktacular, where the young lady won the costume contest as Assassin’s Creed.

I also ran into a couple, who were complete strangers, but daughter and I so loved their outfit that we asked if we could take a photo.

The wife said, “Yes”.

Hubby said, “No”.

I said, “She wins” and took the photo, with daughter in the middle.




Hubby was a good sport saying, “This tutu is a one time deal.”

“You hope”, said I.

At the start line ….






Along the course …




That mural was a PokéStop. I took a photo for my Go site and had daughter pose underneath.

Firemen …






Daughter wanted a police officer as her backdrop.




I wanted horses for mine.




Except for one hill, this was a pleasant and fairly easy course – one which, had I not been stopping for pictures and PokéStops, probably could have finished in under an hour. Official results will probably come in around one hour ten minutes.




I get to do this all over again on November 24th, as daughter talked me into registering for the Turkey Trot at this same location.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Find a Penny

Arriving bright and early at the University yesterday, to gather game supplies, I was surprised to see so little traffic going in and so few cars parked on campus.

Thinking perhaps classes were starting late, I decided not to risk parking, coming back later to find I’d been ticketed. So, instead of taking advantage of the empty lot, I played it safe and parked on that side street about a quarter mile away.

After crossing the road, walking to where I was now on campus property, I looked down and spotted a bright new shinny penny.



Inasmuch as finding a penny is a good luck omen, I picked it up and recited the ritualistic, “Find a penny pick it up. All the day you’ll have good luck”.

I have absolutely no idea where I got that from, but it’s something I can’t remember ever not doing -- something I thought was universally done until, walking the golf course with a friend some time ago, spotting a penny, picking it up, reciting the ritual, that friend found it strange, saying she’d never heard of it.

I can’t be the only person that does this?

On campus, I later stopped to take a photo of a group of students climbing that big deal wolf statue I’d taken that fake being bitten pictures with a week or so back, but I’ve since been informed “It’s not a wolf. It’s a coyote”.




When I stopped to take that photo, a young man passing by smiled, greeted me and said, “I didn’t get the message.”

“What message is that?”

“That there’s no school today.”

“Ohhhh! That’s why the lot is empty. What’s going on?”

“It’s some kind of holiday, Veterans Day.”

Everything began to fall into place … the empty parking lot, all the facebook photos of friends who’d been in the armed services and/or family members who’d served/serving.

“Since I used the gas to get here, I figured I might as well study, but the Library is also closed”, he went on to say.

“LOL. Well you’re not the only one. I didn’t get the message either. I heard the message, saw the message, but it didn’t register.”

Apologies to our Veterans for my having failed to acknowledge your day, and a sincere thank you to all who defended and are defending.

I can only attribute my faux pas to waking up yesterday, brain fried from current events, feeling as though I was living in a dream state and would, at any moment, wake up.

Elsewhere on campus …


Veteran's Success Center

On tap for today is resting up for tomorrow. Not planning on anything other than Virtual 5Ks remainder of the year, I ended up registering for the famous Mission Inn Run. So it's up and out early tomorrow for what, after a whole lot of nothing but the living dead here at the complex, I hope to be a fun day with lots of active people and a simultaneous health and fitness fair.

Did finding a penny bring me luck you ask?

In a manner of speaking, yes, it did.

A $2 Day of the Dead scratch off lottery ticket, turned into $10, which I rolled over into a $10 ticket, which ticket parlayed itself into an $80 win.

Eighty dollars isn’t anywhere near the millions I'm looking to win but, I’ll take it.