Friday, January 27, 2017

Epic Fail

In what universe does it turn out well in following directions to build a bike, but turn out so poorly in baking pre-portioned refrigerated cookie dough?

Evidently in the universe of my kitchen because, though the Trader Joe’s Ginger Molasses Cookies came out of the oven looking as they should.



The flip side was a little too toasty – burnt even.



Fortunately, I’d only baked half because I wanted the cookies to have room to properly spread.

I’d followed the directions as to temperature and bake time, so your guess is as good as mine as to why the epic fail.

I still had the other six pre-portioned dough balls, gave baking another go and, with the timer still set for 12 minutes, took them out of the oven just before the timer went off.



They were close to burning yet again, but good enough to serve, so off I went to the Community Room alerting those present there were only six cookies, because I burned the rest.

Not proud of my contribution, I didn’t stick around but, after a run by Starbucks and the market, I popped in and found all six cookies eaten and no one looking ill or disgusted by the taste, so I guess they went over okay.

As I’d expected, attendance wasn’t all that great -- a little over a dozen residents and, except for the cookies I provided and a dozen or so The Baker provided, cookies were store-bought, provided by the Activity Director.

Topic of conversation was the high wind. Winds blowing so hard that items are flying off patios.

Heading back to my unit cookie-less, as nothing tempted me, I noticed the wind had left a tidy mess of leaves for the pool cleaners. Then I saw what looked to be a rather large shadow at the far end of the pool.



Are my eyes paying tricks on me?

Upon closer inspections, it wasn’t a trick of the eyes, it was two of the patio chairs, picked up and tossed into the pool by the wind.



Pool cleaners are going to have their work cut out for them.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Pup Cup

Now I’ve seen everything.

Granddaughter messaged a photo of my great grandson -- her baby Patches, at Starbucks, enjoying a puppuccino.

No coffee. Just whipped cream.

Speaking of having seen everything … Looking in the rear view mirror yesterday afternoon, preparing to back out, head to the market, what did I see but Nurse Ratched driving through.

I figured she was here to see her mom, who remains a resident and is so nice it’s hard to believe Ratched is her real daughter. Tongue-in-cheek speculation is Ratched is adopted.

At any rate, instead of turning to exit the gate, curiosity led me to turn to follow. I saw her park, step out the truck and observed the resident’s daughter living here because she moved in to help her dad suffering with multiple sclerosis, among other ailments, rush up to talk to her.

Interesting, thought I.

Driving past the two of them, halfway to the exit gate, opposite side of the complex, I saw The Baker, pulled over and said, “Nurse Ratched is here”.

“She is? … Where? … If I run into her, I’m going to turn around and go in the other direction”.

“Not me”, said I. “I’m going to laugh in her ‘I always win’ face, but I hope she’s learned the lesson that there is an authority higher than herself.”

Our conversation then turned to tomorrow’s Hot Cocoa and Cookies Social.

Now that we have a few days of sunshine, I really need to head to the spa for a manicure/pedicure. I’d do it myself except, in preparation for nephew’s 40th birthday party back in December, I’d gotten a gel so I could continue with the needlepoint project without messing up my nails.

If you’ve never had a gel, it’s amazing insofar as nails looking great no matter how much you use your hands. The downside is, I can’t remove the gel myself, it has to be done in the salon and it never stopped raining long enough for me to make the drive.

Tomorrow would have been a good day for the spa, the Hot Cocoa and Cookies Social is likely not to be well-attended or worth it, but I’d already decided to go, bringing fresh baked Trader Joe’s Gingerbread Molasses Cookies – the ones I bought around Christmas and surprisingly didn’t bake and eat all by myself, so the spa will have to wait until next week as their Saturdays are too busy.

After speaking with The Baker, instead of continuing on to the exit gate, something made me turn around and backtrack to the first exit gate, taking me past where Ratched had parked. She was loading up her mom, a couple other family members and luggage into the truck. That resident’s daughter was still talking to her and Ratched had a look on her face like she was angry, saying how she felt about something, but then looked up, saw me, smiled and waved.

I couldn’t believe it.

In all the years she ignored when I smiled and waved, turned her nose up in the air, except for that one time when she was trying to demonstrate to her visiting boss that she was friendly with residents, she had the gall to smile and wave at me.

I burst out laughing and shook my head in disbelief, all of which I’m sure she saw.

Minutes later, having made a stop at the ATM next to Starbucks, who did I see pull up into the parking lot as I was leaving but Nurse Ratched stopping for coffee. It’s a good thing I didn’t go inside, because I’d have been trapped face-to-face with her -- the Universe perhaps giving me a second chance to take the high road.

My reaction would still have been the same – the low road of laughing in her face and shaking my head.

I can’t be fake and Ratched deserves it.

Later, at the mailbox, I saw the resident’s daughter who’d spoken with Nurse Ratched. She said she told her, “I miss you”.

“You’re kidding?” said I.

“Well are things any better with her gone?”

“Yes” said I. “They are. All the unnecessary harassment, lies and intimidation are now gone.”

“Well, what about …” and she went on to bring up two incidents I’d heard nothing about, but both of which took place outside the gates, late at night, and have nothing to do with management or our complex, except a resident was involved, and I told her so. But it gave me an idea as to why Nurse Ratched had that look on her face. The resident’s daughter was probably feeding Ratched’s ego with her version of how bad things are with her gone, which allowed Ratched’s anger at being terminated after what she thinks was the great job she did at managing the place to rise to the surface.

So many deluded souls living a life of alternative facts.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Another Day, Another Flash Flood Warning

Angel tears flowed from Heaven all day yet again, and I’m getting more flash flood warnings than what seems to be necessary.

Those warnings, whether they come through the television or the cellphone, are terrifying, but not for the reason you think.

It’s because the loud buzzing sound comes so unexpectedly, out of nowhere.

I jump and blood rushes to my head every single time, causing my head to hurt for quite a long time after. I’m tempted to disable emergency notifications from my phone but anything can happen at any time, requiring evacuation or, as in the case of that terror attack we had in the area, lock your doors and stay inside, so disabling doesn’t seem the wise thing to do.

Taking advantage of the angels having a day off from their crying yesterday, I got grocery shopping off my list and then headed for the drive-thru Starbucks.

Looks like the Department of Public Works is taking precautions, since the road to the drive-thru gets flooded and drivers thinking "Oh that's not so deep" get stuck.




I wasn't gonna get there from here. So, instead of heading home to make my own from that pound, I backtracked to the walk-in because I wanted to treat myself and because the walk-in has not one, but two PokéStops.

Looking at the Facebook page of the local newspaper, I’m feeling pretty fortunate here in my unit, snug as a bug in a rug, while the chaos of flooding and power outages rage around me. And looking out the patio window, I see one of the homes on the hill is making some sort of neon statement.




I first noticed it after New Years, thought it might have something to do with a Jewish Holiday, but it doesn't look like the Star of David, it's a star ... period.

Wonder what it means?

Friday, January 20, 2017

Twas a Dark and Stormy Day


Today’s all day rain was like the angels crying for us, with us.

Flash flood warnings popped up on my phone and during television programs, but I’d appropriately prepared to stay indoors and was completely self-contained with plenty of water, diy coffee and the ability to finally get some exercise in.

In just the relatively short time I’ve been unable to walk on a daily basis, I’d begun to feel slow, sluggish, old. Thinking I’d gain a ton of weight to be feeling so lousy, I headed down to the scale in the Game Room a few days ago and was pleasantly surprised to see I’d not gained a pound. I’d have been even more pleasantly surprised if I’d lost weight, but was happy to know I’d not gained, that it was just the inactivity deluding me into thinking and feeling so.

Two days on the bike and I’m feeling better already.

I about died first ride, but that was yesterday -- shortly after I finished assembling it. My energy was depleted, body was stiff/achy/sore and I tapped out at exactly 1 minute.

Day 2, this morning, I started off with 5 minutes, took a break, moved up to 8 minutes, took a break did 10 minutes. Later in the afternoon, I put in 20 minutes and will probably put in another 15/20 before bed.

I’d purchased a mat to protect the carpet, but it’s become clear I’m going to need a puffy seat cover to provide some padding. For now, I’m using a towel.

Tomorrow, Day 3, is the first day I’ll be logging in miles towards the Route 66 Challenge, but not the original one I was interested in – Route 66 end-to-end (2,280 miles). That would have committed me to around 200 miles a month, which is a doable 50 miles a week, but I decided to start off slow with a 66 mile challenge.

If it’s dry tomorrow, I’ll head to Sprouts after my morning ride, to load up on supplies before the next storm hits.

As for the angels crying for us, with us, to keep worry at bay, I have to keep reminding myself no good thing lasts forever, but neither does any bad thing last forever.

This too shall pass.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Squeaky Wheel

The idiom that the squeaky wheel gets the grease proved to be true because, along about 2:30 yesterday, I heard footsteps bounding up the stairs. Figuring it was delivery and wanting the box placed inside rather than outside, I opened the door and here comes this big guy carrying what looked to me like an impossible weight for one human to carry on his shoulders.

When I get a delivery, I usually say “Thank you”.

Annoyed that I had to complain to get the delivery, what came out was “Finally”.



Getting the box open, the contents out and unwrapped was a workout.




Lots of parts, but I’d read “easy to assemble” online.  What I didn’t see online was “The assembly requires two people”.

Two people or just one very determined 73 year old, though I, as I set about meticulously reading and following directions. Three hours later, I was about halfway done, and reached the point where I had to stop because I needed a second set of hands to hold the console in place while I attached wires and connected it to the mast.




I thought about calling granddaughter, asking her to stop by after work today, but instead tried using duck tape to hold the console in place.

It worked.




The manual gave insufficient instructions on attaching the seat and pedals. I guess the manufacturer thought they were no-brainers.

They weren’t, no-brainers that is, so I turned to YouTube.

Three/four hours into today, bike completely assembled, console lit up -- signifying wires attached properly.







Like I said, a two person job or just one very determined 73-year old. Maybe I should rephrase that to one very determined woman because, I saw a video online where a young woman and her husband were assembling the same Schwinn 130 Training Bike. The husband became a problem at Step 2 of 9, because he didn't want to take time to follow manual directions, got himself dismissed from the job by his wife, who finished the job all by herself as well.

So job well-done me, everything works and all parts accounted for -- except for this.



This mysterious part is not in the manual, and I can't identify it, but better one part extra than one part missing.

Anxious to get the box broken down, foam, box, wrappings to the dumpster before the rain started up yet again, I headed downstairs about 12:30.

Guess who was waiting for me at the bottom of the stairs, across the center divider.

Yep .. cranky neighbor.

Evidently, she saw me coming out the door and waited to engage me in conversation.

I’m thinking the girls in the office are about done with her, because she tells me she went back and got her parking spot changed from 153 to the one she wanted -- 173.

She then mentioned getting ready to go out of town and asked if the mail had been delivered yet.

“I don’t know. Sometimes it comes in as early as 10:30, sometimes as late as 2:00, but won’t hurt to walk over and check”, says I.

“No matter” says she. “I don’t get mail anyway”.

Then why did she ask? 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Lying Liar

First used on facebook by a friend describing the orange guy, I’ve fallen in love with that phrase “lying liar”, only that’s not who I’m referring to.

This is about the FedEx guy or gal who didn’t deliver the bike on Monday because, as was posted on tracking “Delivery exception. Customer not available or business closed”.

First of all, we are not a business. We are an apartment complex.

Secondly, this customer was available ... she waited all day.

Thirdly, even though the office was closed for MLK Day, FedEx has a code. I see them driving through the gate all the time, at all hours into the late evening. Plus, there is a call box to reach the resident.

But okay, delivery was changed to today, so I yet again waited.

Nothing.

Along about 4:30, I checked tracking and found a delivery exception posted at 3:02, “Customer not available or business closed”.

Lying liar.

I was sitting right here and the office was open until 4:00.

Thinking this is a situation of someone not wanting to do their job of lugging a heavy box up the stairs, knowing that when he or she fails to do their job tomorrow, using that same lame excuse, the item will most likely be returned or I’ll get a notice to pick up myself, I decided to lodge a complaint with FedEx. I didn’t say the driver was a lying liar, but I did say he or she was incorrect about this being a business and my not being available.

Person taking the complaint said they'd make a notation to the driver that this is not a business and to leave the item at the door.

Duh and duh!

If he or she had actually driven to the complex, they'd know it's not a business, and isn't leaving the item at the door what they're suppose to do?

Hopefully the fact that I called in will spur the driver into doing his/her job and tomorrow -- third time, will be the charm.

Stuck indoors waiting, I not only was not able to take advantage of the MLK holiday to gather PokémonGo game tools, I’ve also not been able to run errands and take care of business ahead of the storm expected to arrive late Wednesday, run through Thursday and Friday.

I did make it downstairs today to pick up mail, drop off trash and ran into the Cranky Neighbor.

"Did your parking situation get resolved".

"Yes. Not the one I wanted, but yes".

"Where?"

"No. 153".

Happy she’d been assigned far and away from me, I failed to ask which was the one she wanted. But, before I could walk away, she began expressing how unhappy she is with the way things are done in California, as opposed to New York, and the fact that she drove all the way to the post office on Monday, found it closed, doors open, but no forms in the counter area.

Mercifully, the Nosey Neighbor walked over to hand Cranky an envelope she'd seen her drop. I took it as an opportunity to make my escape, and left Nosey to listen to the rest of Cranky's complaints.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Oopsie

For several days, I’ve been hearing mention on television of the holiday weekend. Confused, because I thought the holidays were over, but not really paying much attention I brushed it off.

Yesterday, after hearing “holiday weekend” a few more times, I became curious enough to google “What holidays are in January”.

Oops!

It’s Martin Luther King Day.

It wouldn’t be fair to think that I of all people should have known because, now that I’m retired, not looking forward to a day off because every day is a day off, I've pretty much lost interest in holidays. In fact, I was at the University hunting Pokémon, wondering why the campus was so empty, when I learned it was empty because that day was a holiday -- Veteran’s Day; and when granddaughter invited me over to make a plate, after her mom dropped off her BFFs to spend the holidays, bringing along a feast, I’d asked “Is today Christmas?”

“No, grandma, that’s tomorrow”.

The 4th of July is easily remembered because it's obvious.

At any rate, if my left foot wasn’t still giving me grief, I’d head to -- what I expect to be, an empty campus to load up on PokémonGo game tools. On the other hand, if the indoor bike gets delivered early enough, I may still make it out of the complex and to the campus, walking with the aid of compression socks I invested $28 in.

Sorry now that I didn’t allow the doctor to boot the foot so I’d stay off it, or at least have support, I’d done alternative research and located compression socks advertised as serving the same purpose as a splint or boot – “Instant relief to stop that awful heel pain, stops throbbing and helps you stand and walk freely”.

I guess today is not a holiday for everyone, because tracking indicates the bike is “On fedex vehicle for delivery”, so I’ll stick to home so I can get the guy to park -- what I expect to be a rather large box, indoors rather than on the porch for me to struggle inside.

No car parked next to the right side of mine yet. So I don’t know what’s up with Cranky Neighbor’s parking situation.

She strikes me as the type of individual not necessarily looking for workarounds/solutions, but one who just enjoys having stuff to complain about or only wants the outcome she wants. I mean, really ... a lawyer or the Attorney General over a parking space? Especially since she'd said she'd gone that route previously.

When she said she'd done so I'd asked, "How did THAT go?"

"I got a call at home. My husband picked up the phone and said, 'A Mr. xxx would like to speak with you'".

"That's the Dean!"

She had a far away look in her eyes, like she was remembering something very unpleasant, when she said, "He (the dean) was not happy with me".

"How did the parking situation go?" asked I.

"It was cleared up a few weeks later."

Probably would have been cleared up without all the drama, as will it get cleared up here as well.

Happy am I, she’s across the quad, rather than next door.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

The One About the Cranky Neighbor

Her words, not mine.

Friday the 13th turned out to be an okay day. Sun was shining – for about 30 minutes; I beat everyone to the laundry room and was done before others began trickling in.

First to trickle in, as I was packing up dry laundry, was the new neighbor – the older lady who took the upstairs unit across the quad.

I greeted her with “Hey neighbor”.

Looking highly agitated, she greeted me with, “I’m so fed up with the office, so frustrated. I’m going to get an attorney, send a letter to the Attorney General, and I’m thinking of moving.”

“Oh no! … Why? … What’s wrong?”

Her upset stems from parking in the carport area.

She states the new Community Manager said “You can park wherever you like”. She did so and ended up in someone else’s assigned carport spot. Reporting being told she’d have to move her car to the office, she says she was then told by the Assistant Manager that the Community Manager had given her incorrect information -- that she can park wherever she likes on the property EXCEPT in the covered carport areas, as carports are specifically assigned and paid for monthly.

“You know they don’t like each other don’t you?”

“No, I didn’t realize that.”

“I can see it in their eyes.”

Interesting. My spidey sense never picked up any friction between the Community Manager and her Assistant. Friction between the former Community Manager (Nurse Ratched) and everyone, yes; but nothing between the new manager and anyone, least of all her assistant.

At any rate, new neighbor said she then requested a carport, and it took forever and several calls and visits to the office before being assigned a numbered space.

Problem is, another car is in that spot and never moves.

Since then, she says the office hasn’t been responding to her at all.

“I’ve worked in business and this is no way to run a business!”

I told her I was sorry she was having problems that, inasmuch as things have been going fairly well since the new Community Manager was put in place, the problems with the office now may stem from the fact it’s only the two of them, and the Community Manager has been sick with pneumonia, while the Assistant Manager has been off/on dealing with some unknown illness.

“I’m not buying that!” says she and went on to say she was already angry about all the paperwork she’d had to provide to get a unit in the complex, how the office had no legal right to intrude into her financial privacy to the extent they did, that she’d previously contacted the Attorney General about a parking situation at the university where she’d taught, yada yada yada.

I mentioned the monthly Management/Residents meeting. That if the parking situation is not resolved, she could take it up then.

That was a “no”. She feels an attorney and/or the Attorney General the way to go.

I mentioned having good service just sending an email to the office.

She says they never open email.

Asking if the girls were in the office today, I said “yes”, hoped they’d take care of her parking situation and suggested she request No 167 specifically -- the spot to the right of mine, because no one has parked there in all the years I’ve been here.

She made note of the number and said she’d check it out “If no one was parked there today”.

I’m beginning to get a picture here, form a somewhat negative opinion of the new neighbor.

Still mumbling about being frustrated, that the friends she’d spoken to and the son who’d moved her in were now also upset about the way she’s being treated, she laughingly said, “I didn’t mean to burden you with all this. That’s all you need, a cranky neighbor”.

So that’s going to be her moniker here on the blog – the cranky neighbor.

I hope my helpfulness in suggesting she park next to me doesn't come back to bite me in the butt.

Friday, January 13, 2017

To Party or Not to Party

That was the question.

Though yesterday’s heavy downpour didn’t stop -- not for a second, the precipitation in my head cleared and I messaged my friend of 40+ years that I would not be driving down for her husband’s 70th birthday party.

Felt a little guilty when she messaged me back a sad face saying she was looking forward to seeing me but, oh well, I’ll get over the guilt of disappointing her. She’ll get over the disappointment.

In retrospect, I think it was her strong desire for me to make an appearance that caused my indecisiveness but, when all was said and done, the desire to do what would make ME happy, and a matter of economics, were the deciding factors.

I received notification of the Route 66 Virtual Challenge yesterday morning.



Still bummed out at having to opt out of the Citrus Run because the heel spur in my left foot is still giving me grief, I’ve been further bummed out at not being able to participate in other 5Ks coming up.

Seeing that I could indoor bike the Route 66 Challenge of 2,280 miles, the question then became do I waste time, energy and x number of dollars in hotel fees to party for one night or do I invest time energy and around the same x number of dollars in a Schwinn Upright Bike.

Answer was a no brainer. The Schwinn won hands down and arrives on Monday.

On tap for today is beating other residents of the complex down to the Laundry Room.

It’s 5:00 in the morning and looks like, after a week-long downpour, we’ve been given a break, which means – with 178 apartment homes, it’ll be a stampede of residents heading for one of the three laundry rooms on the premises.

I’m attempting to beat ‘em all by heading down at the crack of dawn, well ahead of posted laundry room hours.

The 52-Week Money Challenge is also today, at 10:00. Rain or shine, I plan to go down to the Community Room to see what that’s about.

Happy Friday the 13th!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Cats and Dogs

That’s what the weather visited upon this area all day yesterday and, when I woke up this morning it was cats, dogs and the kitchen sink.

I was beginning to think it yet another sign of the apocalypse and that someone should be building an ark when, along about 12:30 it suddenly stopped and the sun actually came up.

About a month shy of completing the needlepoint project begun in May of last year, and running out of a floss color needed for completion, I took advantage of the break in the rain, drove to the craft store in Rancho Cucamonga and, while waiting to check out, spied a selfie stick.

I’ve been wanting one of those for years, had off/on looked at a few online, but was scared off because I didn’t know if my phone would fit and figuring out how to work it looked complicated.

When granddaughter’s two BFFs visited her over the holiday, one had a selfie stick and showed me the ropes.

I ended the lesson feeling confident, saying “I’m getting one” and what do you know, before I could get around to deciding which one to buy, a reasonably priced stick jumped out at the craft store. With a 40% off coupon, the stick and floss, totaled to less than the stick alone.

Now when I take pictures of events here at the complex, I can actually include myself in them.

After the craft store, it was filling up the tank at Costco gas and a plan to get laundry done before the clouds I saw looming over the complex dumped another load on us.




Never made it to the laundry room. Instead, I made the mistake of logging into facebook, where I learned the orange guy held a press conference and, once again, spoke out of both sides of his mouth. What fascinated me was nothing he said, but what others posted about what he said.

I was glued to the puter, laughing at how others worded what they'd gleaned from all the double talk -- fake news is okay when he uses it, but not okay when used against him, funny tweets about blackmail for the having women urinate thing, and how it is he describes himself as being an extreme germaphobe, yet has no qualms about grabbing vajajas.

The comment that struck me funniest was “He lies and lies and lies some more. He even lies about his lies. Lying liar”.

That phrase “lying liar” is going to stay with me.

I took a moment to meditate that his supporters set aside prejudice, self interest, take blinder off and wake up.

I’m still going back and forth about that 70th birthday party. The event is on the 29th so, if I’m not showing up, I should let my friend know by the 27th at least. I’m so not able to make a decision that I looked to my horoscope to decide for me.

It predicted “A fun getaway between January 12th and February 7th.

Interesting, but it had also predicted a huge lottery win last month.

I’m still waiting for that, so I’m not putting much faith in this latest prediction.

At any rate, whether I end up attending or not, my wish for myself is no more party invites, so I'll not have to wrestle with these decisions in future. Invitations to 5Ks, yes. Invitations to meditation sessions, yes. But no more parties.

Monday, January 9, 2017

No Harm in Looking?

Yesterday’s weather was pretty perfect.

Expecting it not to be, I headed out to the locktician (hairdresser for braids) in winter wear – leggings, long sleeve top, boots, jean jacket, and got so hot that I dispensed with the jacket and rolled the sleeves up.

Just in case it rained this morning, I had the inclination, after leaving the locktician yesterday, to stop at Starbucks for a cup and a pound, but passed because I wasn’t craving coffee.

I shoulda paid attention to that inclination, because I woke up to a cats and dogs downpour this morning. Along about noon, it slowed down and was off/on, so I bundled up, headed out and finally stocked up.




It’s been so long since I purchased beans that I couldn’t remember what grind to request, so I said “For a percolator” and, just like last time I went through a DIY period, the young barista didn’t know what a percolator was. I ended up requesting “Not as coarse as french press”, so we’ll see how it goes.

Just to make sure I don’t end up with grinds in the coffee, I’ll use the pour over method suggested by Dkzody’s husband.

At any rate, what I did instead of Starbucks yesterday was to stop by a market I probably shouldn’t mention by name, but which wasn’t Sprouts and it wasn’t Whole Foods, and observed something that’s been bothering me ever since because I failed to report it for fear I’d be perceived as over reacting.

The guy on his knees, stocking the eggs, was acting like an out of control pervert. Instead of focusing on his stacking, he was not so surreptitiously looking left and right and, when a female customer turned the corner, he’d stare at her lower extremity.

I don’t recall seeing anyone in a dress or skirt, so he wasn’t able to look up, but when a young girl walked through in shorts, the way he leered was unconscionable.

I know all guys check out females, but the way this guy was doing so, and where he was looking was disgusting. He struck me as the kind of guy to hide video equipment in the women’s bathroom.

In reaching for eggs and milk, I was positioned dangerously close to him and he turned and looked directly at my lower front extremity, so close that his face was almost in it and, when I began walking away, he turned to look at the back view.

A modest individual, when wearing leggings I usually have a sweat shirt tied around my waist. But because I’d dressed for winter, with that jean jacket, and then had taken the jean jacket off, and leggings hugging like a second skin, I felt fully exposed under his glare.

The guy was so creepy, and I so unnerved, that I actually put the milk back and walked away. I’d have put the eggs back as well, but didn’t want to give him another front view.

I so wanted to report what he was doing but, looking at all the guys behind the manager counter, I didn’t think they’d understand how inappropriate he was being and how uncomfortable it made me feel to not only experience it, but to see him doing it to unsuspecting others.

It’s been bothering me ever since that I did nothing and, after watching the courage of Meryl Streep as she schooled the orange guy, I will never let something like that go again. Should our paths cross again, and I hope they do so I can get this off my chest, you can be sure I’ll lodge a complaint because “There may be no harm in looking ... it may be that most guys do", but this guy was carrying it to the extreme when he should have been focusing on his duties. 

Or maybe I’ll just go for the jugular and shock the perpetrator out of it with, “What you’re doing is really creepy. You’re a pervert and need to get yourself some help”.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Senior Moment

Yesterday was my first senior moment of the year.

The plan had been to get out and take care of business early, just in case the rain decided to make another appearance. I didn’t even take time for breakfast after bathing, dressing, makeup. It was hit the University’s PokéStops first, then the ATM next door to Starbucks for cash, then Starbucks for a Venti Coffee and a pound of coffee for home.

Heading out the door to the car, I snuck a peek at the downstairs neighbor’s patio to check for mess caused by mud washing down from mine.

No mess at all.

The rain had washed her patio clean.

At the University, I managed to hit up 31 PokéStops and logged in 2.45 miles before the foot began to ache. The balls collected at the stops still were not enough because, now at Level 22, it’s getting harder and harder to catch Pokémon. The little buggers fight more, break free more often, require more balls to be brought down.

It’s getting a little frustrating.

At any rate, after leaving the University, I headed to Starbucks, parked in the lot, took out my ATM card and wondered why I was doing so.

“Why am I heading to the ATM ... Do I plan to go to the market this morning?"

I wracked my brain, couldn’t figure out what I needed cash for, but decided to go with the flow, get the cash, figure out why later.

After picking up my regular Venti Coffee, returning to the complex around 11:30 -- starved out of my mind for breakfast, just as I pulled into my parking space and went to turn the ignition off was when I heard myself say to myself …. “Oh Crap! …You forgot the coffee!”

And, of course, I woke up to rain this morning, with more predicted to come.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Stormy Weather


It rained non-stop all night Wednesday and all day Thursday.

If I wanted Starbucks yesterday, and of course I did, I would have had to swim for it, so I passed and stayed indoors.

In one aspect, the rain was a good thing because, after removing the Christmas patio decorations, I was faced with a lot of leaves and areas of dirt on the concrete patio which, because of all the rain and items preventing it washing away, had pooled and turned to mud.

Removing the leaves wasn’t a problem but, inasmuch as I’ve got a neighbor underneath me, washing away the mud with soapy water was out of the question. I'd tried sweeping it up, mopping it up, and all that did was spread wet mess around even more. So, I’d had to sit and look at it, waiting for rain so I could use the patio broom to dislodge and the rain to wash it away.

Muddy water would, of course, have washed down onto my neighbor’s patio, but the causation being rain – an Act of God, I’d be off the hook as a bad neighbor.

So when I heard the rain start up Wednesday night, it was all “finally ... at last”. I just didn’t know it was going to be all day as well.

So there I was, 6:00 yesterday morning, rain drops falling on my head, hoping all the neighbors in the quad were still asleep, or at least way too occupied to see the crazy lady sprinkling washing soda and scrubbing her patio.

I was curious as all heck to see what the downstairs neighbor’s patio ended up looking like, but it never stopped raining long enough for me to check it out. Hopefully, her patio got enough rain to wash away whatever dribbled down from mine. If not, oh well, she has no one underneath her and can easily wash it away with a couple buckets of water. She can’t hose her patio down because that Nurse Ratched character who’d previously managed the complex had, in her insane wisdom of making sure the drought restrictions were complied with, had ordered maintenance to cut off all the water spigots.

The new complex manager found it strange there are no spigots and, fortunately, I just happened to be present when she questioned it. I informed her it was her predecessor’s bright idea, which predecessor I described to her as a terrible human, only I used the word “beoch”.

I asked if spigots could be reinstalled, have not yet heard back on that, but I’m sure Corporate isn’t going to want to go to the expense, as the owners appear to be entering 2017 very budget conscious, giving us low-end activities, and even economizing by putting an end to free cable beginning February 1.

That's sure to be a hot topic at the next Management/Residents meeting.

The goal today is to get off the computer, away from the television, and outside to take care of business just in case the rain starts up again. I'll get coffee, and pick up a pound so I won't get stuck without for when the next storm predicted by the weatherman comes. I also need PokéBalls because oddly enough, the rain didn’t stop my PokémonGo activities. A few Clefairy, Squirtle, Bulbasaur and Charmander ran indoors to get away from the rain and I managed to catch them without getting off the couch.

I don't want to park off the University campus and have to walk on the sore foot for a distance, so I'll spring for 1 hour parking, gather as much as I can without too much walking, and head back.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Unforeseen Circumstances

Every year I get all the Christmas decorations packed away and, a day or so later, find some little something I missed. Last year, it was the wreath on the door. This year it was this little guy that didn’t register until this morning.




It’s a candy dish, but I switch out the regular holder at Christmas with this Santa, and at Halloween with a spooky holder.

I have a feeling that if I pull the patio decorations out of storage for Christmas 2017, I’m going to find mold, mildew and rust, because it never got warm enough to dry everything out, so items were packed away damp. They were all outdoor decorations, but it had rained so often and so hard, that I saw rust forming on metal parts and whatever that fabric was on the drums needed some serious sunlight to dry out, which it didn’t get; also, I was so not careful pushing the three-tier tree into storage that the tiers became unhinged, which means the whatever controls the lights probably got disconnected and might not work next time.

Oh well, no biggie. I’m not even sure I’ll be in the Christmas Spirit end of year and if I am, I’ll toss out the old mold mildew rusted and bring in some new.

New neighbor’s furniture arrived today. She’s got good taste. Before I lost interest and went back to my needlepoint, I saw a Tiffany Lamp and ginormous flat screen appear.

Would you believe I did it again?

I rsvp’d “yes” to a party invitation when I know I don’t like parties and always immediately begin looking for a way out.

On the rare occasion I receive a party invitation, attending seems like such a good idea. Then I get to thinking … thinking about not fitting in because I don’t dance, except for line dancing, don’t drink, can’t eat most of what’s served, and usually don’t know anyone other than the host or hostess.

In this case, in attendance will be folks I worked with back in the 60’s, but I seriously doubt I’ll recognize or remember any of them. I never paid much attention to them in the first place and, unlike the friend who sent me the invite, haven’t stayed in touch with or thought about them over the years.

The hostess in this case is the woman I’ve been friends with for over 40 years -- this is the friend I’d blogged about in 2015 that invited me to a monthly luncheon she started up with those still living and retired from the group we worked with back-in-the-day.

Not sure if I mentioned, but she’d also called because an old male friend wanted to be put in contact with me – was asking for my telephone number.

I’d, of course, declined the monthly luncheon because I didn’t remember the others much and wasn’t interested in becoming reacquainted.

Same with the guy.

Though I’d been interested in becoming involved back in the day, we never got beyond the friend zone. Now, with so many years separating then from now, what could we possibly talk about? So no … tell him to add me as a Facebook friend, if he likes, but do not give him my telephone number.

The occasion this time is her husband’s 70th Birthday, which actually sounded like it might be a good time until I began thinking about how I’d not fit in and don’t care to socialize on a party level.

So here I am again, wanting out of a commitment, except I was a little smarter this time in that I rsvp’d “Yes, barring unforeseen circumstances”, which gives me if not a door at least a window through which to escape.

Unforeseen circumstances can simply be my saying, “Sorry, but I won’t be driving down that way after all” with no further explanation -- except I’m not completely sure I don’t want to step out of my comfort zone and go.

I've already cancelled the hotel, but have not yet let my friend know I won’t be coming because every time I think about letting her know, my mind is like “Yes, No, Maybe, I Dunno”.

I can always re-book the hotel, even if it’s the day of.

I just need clarity as to a definite yes or no.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

New Year's Day

Much as I wanted 2016 to loop, 2017 never to come, it is in fact 2017.

It’s blistery outside, but not yet raining -- hopefully will not and the sun is trying its best to shine, which is a good omen.

I’ve got the inside decorations all wrapped up ready to go back into storage and, with a little luck, the patio decorations will dry out and I can get everything into storage by end of day.

Would you believe I found yet another lost item?

Coming back from Starbucks yesterday, I spotted a key card lying on the walkway – a key card used by residents to scan into the mechanism that opens the gate to resident parking.

Mine has a sticker with my unit number on the back but, of course, the one I found has no such marking, so I couldn’t walk it over to the owner. It does have an identification number -- a number only the office can associate with a resident and, inasmuch as the office is closed until Tuesday, I can’t turn it in until then.

That means the owner of the key card was not able to get their car back inside the gate to park if they left the building yesterday afternoon, won’t be able to reenter today and tomorrow. They’ll have to wait for another car to use their key card and follow that car in which, during daylight hours is pretty frequent. Not so much at night, and there is no overnight parking outside the gate.

It’s a $50 replacement fee for a new key card so, if I were the owner, I’d be very happy to receive a call from the office, on Tuesday, to come pick up their found card.

I don’t know what’s up with this finding things, but can’t wait to see what I come across next.

Before management took off for the Holiday, they distributed January’s Activity Calendar.

January 6, 1:00 – 2:00 Class: My 3 Health Goals
January 6, 3:00 – 4:00 Price is Right


January 13, 10:00 – 11:00: 52 Week Money Challenge
January 13, 11:00 – 2:00 Bingo


January 20, 4:00 – 5:00: Stress Less in 2017

January 27, 10:00 – 11:00: Bingo
January 27, 12:00 – 1:00 Hot Cocoa and Cookie Social

Since the folks have all been such downers lately, I’ve not been hanging out with them much, so I doubt I’ll be participating in anything other than the 52-Week Money Challenge session.

As for the Cookie Social, I still have those Trader Joe’s Gingerbread Molasses bake and serve cookies to get rid of, so that’s a strong maybe.