Friday, October 21, 2016

An evening with WDJ

The above is a picture of what someone calls a delicious Pork Chop dinner.  Sadly, I didn't think to take a picture of the plate delivered to me at the Palace Diner in Poughkeepsie tonight, as it proves my claim - some of the best food being served these days is being served at local diners.

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Today, the host of Thursday game nights sent out a message to all people who signed up for tonight's meetup, telling us that tonight's meetup was cancelled. It only made sense to contact WDJ to see if she was still available for dinner - and she was. So, I got showered and dressed, and was ready to get out the door at 5:00 pm.  Just as I was finished getting dressed, my brother called to tell me some interesting news: we could easily get another $1,200/month if we turn the two rooms in the attic into proper bedrooms. So, after a little discussion, we agreed to do this, and moved forward with our renovation project.

After I ended the call with my brother, it was off to Beacon to see WDJ.  I told her that we had to make a milk run to Poughkeepsie to see if the Catherine's there carried the dress I tried on when visiting RO. Sadly, the dress wasn't there, and it was a trip for nothing. But it allowed us to have a very nice dinner at the Palace Diner. I decided on having the Pork Chop special, which consisted of mashed potatoes (tasty, but forgettable) and the main plate. Imagine two grilled pork chops stacked on top of each other, both garnished with thin apple slices, what may have been a small sweet berry, coated with a wonderful sauce, with a healthy amount of asparagus leaning on the thick stack of pork chops.  YUM!  Even though I normally don't like eating asparagus, they made it tasty, and I enjoyed eating every bite. YUM!  (WDJ had a pastrami sandwich, and I'll bet that she will enjoy her leftovers when she eats them.)

I won't give you any details about what we talked about. But for the most part, our chat was basic girl talk, and a dash of current politics. I can say that we did talk about her life in her new community, and what she missed from her old community. And there are things that she learned, and only could have learned by leaving New York.

All too quickly, our night had to end, and I had to drive home.  It was good seeing WDJ. And it was sad to know she would soon be leaving again.... 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

A dress - a staple of a woman's wardrobe.

A dress.  It's a basic staple of the average woman's wardrobe. And it is the one garment that advertises that the person wearing it is a woman and not a man.  As you can guess, I love dresses and try to wear them whenever I can.

My plans for the day when I got up were:
  1. Send out job applications
  2. Visit RO, a woman I met once in 2014 and go on a shopping expedition.
  3. (Optional) See WDJ for a quick bite to eat.
I got around to the first two on the list, but didn't get back on the road early enough to take care of number three.

- - - - - -

Sometimes, it seems like I'm never going to find work. But until I see things that look like I have a shot at doing the posted job well, I will be filling out applications only to maintain my eligibility to collect unemployment insurance.  Please do not read much into this.  I didn't have much hope when I applied for my last job. But I probably would have done better on the job had I not been distracted by my dad's illness, exhausted from work on the family homestead, and sleep deprived due to the long commute. In the end, I didn't achieve what was expected of me, and I am a little gun shy because of it.

GFJ had to drive her son to the airport at 4:00 am, and then get back home by 9:00 am in order to open up her office.  If I had thought more, I'd have told her to call me at 7:30 am, so that she could stay awake chatting with me on her ride back up North.  Instead, I let the alarm wake me at 8:00 am, and hopped into the shower by 10:30 am.When I was in the shower, I noticed that water pressure dropped to a third of its prior level.  I made sure to rinse off quickly, and get dressed.  It seems like there was a water main problem up the hill from me, and was affecting everyone on the hill on which I live.  (More later....)

- - - - - -

I called GFJ on my way down to RO's place and found out how busy things were at the office and how tired she was. Thankfully, she got a call while I was halfway to Long Island, so I didn't have to say much when I didn't want to say anything.

As much as I'd love to date someone who accepts me as Marian, I also believe that one leaves the dance with the gal that one came with. Because of this, I wasn't going to start anything with RO that I couldn't finish.  Instead, I'd use this shopping expedition as an opportunity to develop a friendship with someone who accepts me in Marian mode, so that I have one more person on my list of friends who know me as Marian.

When I arrived at RO's place, I parked my car, and we went over to The Avenue - this outlet being about a mile from the family homestead. RO bought several garments there, and I tried on a LBD that I passed on.  The LBD looked great on me, but I didn't need any more LBD's in my closet.

Our next stop was Catherine's in Carle Place.  Here is where I found another dress that looked great on me (see photo at the top of this entry), and was strongly temped to buy it. Hemming and hawing, I decided to let the dress pass.  RO offered to subsidize my dress purchase, and I still said no. I explained that if I really want it, I'll go to another Catherine's and buy the dress. (The way it looks, I'll probably do so, but will spend a few dollars more in the process.)  RO bought a pretty bra (one I own, and love), and then it was off to the diner for lunch.

After lunch, we went to Kohl's, where RO completed her shopping expedition.  I figure that she must have spent $200+ on clothes, but it was well worth it.  RO has lost a lot of weight via diet and exercise, and needs enough clothes to transition to a smaller body as she shrinks to a more healthy body.

- - - - - -

While out, Pat called and said that she was available. So instead of seeing WDJ (something I wanted to do very much), I saw Pat.  (I couldn't reach WDJ, and I'm not sure if she'd have been available for dinner at 9:00 pm.)  Pat and I talked for a long while, and we tried to research a lover of hers who we think is "playing" her.  This fellow has an abnormally low number of cookie crumbs on the internet, and we found out that his professional id is different from his legal id. Hopefully, Pat will ditch this fellow before she gets burnt by him.

The more I'm over at Pat's, the more she sees me naturally adopting feminine poses and body language.  Tonight, she made a special effort to capture the picture below, as it shows how far I've progressed in my femininity:

What do you think?

- - - - - -

Eventually, I left for home, and chatted with GFJ on the way to the co-op.  She was overtired, and I'm glad she had a short ride to get home.  As for me, when I arrived home, I found that my apartment had no water.  The water main break that happened at 10:00 am was still being worked on after midnight.  Hopefully, I'll be able to take a nice shower in the morning.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Long Island - Again.

As you can see from the photo above, work is being done at the family homestead.  New tiles have been laid in the kitchen, and we're slowly seeing the signs of what the house will  look like when we're finished renovating it.

Today was a day that I stayed en-homme, as I had to go to the auto dealership for my car's yearly NYS safety inspection. I was very surprised to find that my car passed with flying colors and didn't need any other service. And that included the brake job I expected I'd need after 60k miles on both front and rear brakes.

When I was done with the car, it was off to meet Lili at Panera Bread.  The place was crowded, so we ended up going to Moe's Southwest Grill. This was a mistake we'll never make again, as their version of Mexican ends up with dishes that have muddy flavors from fresh food.  Why does this happen?  Simple, too many choices, and many of them being counter productive to having a tasty meal. How would I describe the food itself?  Fresh, but....  In German, there are two closely related words for eating.  "Essen" is something humans do at a table.  "Fressen" is something animals do at a troth. Although the ingredients at Moe's is tasty, the combinations lend themselves more to "Fressen" than "Essen."

About 1:30 pm or so, Lili and I went our separate ways.  I drove home to pick up my watch, and then drove to Long Island - where I hit the usual traffic jams on the way to see my dad. I reached my dad a little after 4:00 pm, and stayed with him until a little before 5:00 pm.  Not having seen him in a month, I can see the gradual decline of his cognitive capability, and see that he's on his downhill slope.  This saddens me, and there's nothing I can do but be there while it happens.

A little after 5:15 pm, I reached the family homestead, and I met the fellows who have been renovating the place.  It was good to be able to see them before they left for the day.  And it was even better when I saw how much work they have gotten done since they started work.  I only wish I could have taken pictures on each day I was there over the past few months, so that I could have a record of all the changes taking place.

My brother arrived, and we went out looking for lighting fixtures. The store we wanted to go to closed at 6:00 pm.  And the other store we went to had the most gaudy items for sale.  It looked like we weren't going to settle on lighting fixtures for the kitchen tonight - and we didn't do so.  But we did have a chance to talk, and that was well worth it.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Monday, Monday, can't trust that day.

This is how I went out today. The sweater I'm wearing tends to go well with a lot of outfits.  I only wish I could find dresses with a 2"-3" lower hem line.

- - - - - -

When I got up this morning, I had these these items on my to-do list:
  1. Send out job applications. 
  2. Order new Chin Strap for nightly use with CPAP
  3. Confirm shopping trip with friend from Long Island
  4. Email NPWJ at NPW.
By the time I left the house in the afternoon, the top 3 items were taken care of.  However, I had forgotten to email NPWJ. That, I took care of int he afternoon.  (I'd like to drop in and see if they could use my help again.  It'd be nice to be able to again use new work for them as something that helps my resume look good to potential employers.

- - - - - -

Just after I showered, I got a call from GFJ. She got word from her doctor regarding one of the tests she took.  It seems like one of her carotid arteries has some blockage. As a result, she will likely need to go to the hospital for another procedure.  If it is the same procedure that Patty had for her carotid artery, she'll be wide awake and talking with the doctors as they clean the plaque out of the artery. 

Before I left the apartment, I got a call from a headhunter looking to see if I was available for a position in New Jersey.  I never heard from her again, and checked the firm's website to see if the opening was a public posting.  It was, and I found out that the headhunter was bottom fishing, and do not expect to hear from this person again.

While out, I received an email from WDJ.  It's nice to know that she's in town, as I'd like to be able to meet her again while she's here.  Right now, she's staying with family, and I hope she's having a good time.  I miss seeing her on a regular basis, but I am glad that she is able to live life for herself for a change.

I ran into one of my neighbors when I got home.  Years ago, when my wife was alive, we used to socialize quite a bit, and did so for a while after my wife's death.  This lady and I never could have gotten close to each other, as she was the type of person who drank like a fish.  When she first saw me in Marian Mode, she couldn't deal with me this way.  But over time, she may have become more accepting of me this way, as she has seen more transgender people out in the world.  She asked about the timing of transition, and I responded that I probably won't transition while my dad's alive - and she understood why I'd keep this a secret from my dad.  But I wasn't going to say much more to a person who no longer had the possibility of being a closer friend.

- - - - - -

Strangely enough, I was tired when I got back to my apartment.  The food I had bought went into the refrigerator, and I decided to rest.  By the time I was fully conscious again, it was almost 8:00 pm, and I had nowhere to go.  So now, I have to get ready to be in Mario mode for a visit to the dealership for my car's yearly NYS inspection (which will also trigger a brake job on the rear wheels), a trip to Long Island to see work on the family homestead, and to visit my dad in the nursing home.

Monday, October 17, 2016

The shortened long weekend

Originally, GFJ planned to stay over from Friday to Monday.  Due to a doctor's appointment just scheduled for Monday, GFJ had to her weekend with me.  This is not as bad as it sounds, as it allowed each of us to get things done that we'd avoid doing if we were together.  (It also gave me an unexpected day to get back to being en-femme, and will be covered in a different entry.)

- - - - - -

Friday was not much of a day to remember. DCD failed to come over, as he claimed that he made a mistake in his children's school schedules, and that he had to take care of them during the day.  Although this could be true, I'm inclined to think that he was withdrawing into his shell again, and simply wanted to stay home. Later on, GFJ came over, and we had a nice time chatting at the local park.  The weather was perfect, and though we didn't need our windbreakers when we arrived at the park, it was nice to have them with us by the time the sun went down.

GFJ's foot being in a "boot" does get in the way of things.  After going to the park, we went to the local pizzeria and ate well (for me, too well). Both of us would have liked to go for a little walk after eating so much food.  This, sadly, was not possible for GFJ, so we took a little drive instead. The weather was still nice, and it may be one of the last chances we have to get outdoors without heavy coats to keep us warm.

- - - - - -

Saturday was a little better.  GFJ and I took it easy all day.  Then, she had the idea of seeing a local group perform at the Putnam County Golf Course. Normally, I would not be in the mood to do this, I figured that it would be a good change of pace for us. So off we went, with iffy weather in mind, to the venue (which was 5 minutes from Lili's place). The band, The Amish Outlaws, was a decent covers band, and one could dance to most of their music is one didn't have a boot on her foot like GFJ.  So, instead of dancing, we sat down - and got our money's worth of the BBQ they were serving at the venue.

As I've said before, food is both my friend and enemy.  Saturday was no different for me.  There was way too much good food at the venue, and I ate too much at one sitting.  To stay awake, I decided to take a walk along one of the cart paths at the golf course, and went as far as I could before turning back. This was a good move for me, as I had no problem staying awake for the rest of the evening - especially after the second set ended, when the coffee I drank a few minutes before started to kick in.

- - - - - -

Sunday was a quiet day broken up with phone calls from my brother.  He wanted to report status on the homestead renovation, and woke us up twice.  I'm very glad that my brother is buying an extra 12" cabinet and storing it for potential future use.  He realizes that it will make sense for us to plan for the installation of a dishwasher when we're ready to sell the house at some future date.

Neither GFJ nor I had any energy to do much of anything all day.  And if she didn't have to go to the doctor tomorrow for one more exam (and test), she'd have stayed another day. But her schedule and mine dictated that this would be our last night together for a while, and as Shakespeare said: "Parting is such sweet sorrow."

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Quickie: Co-Op issues

This is a view similar to that one can see from windows in the upper two buildings of my co-op apartment complex. The building pictured is virtually the same as the other buildings on my hill, and it is a nice place to live most of the time.

In every place where one has to deal with neighbors, one has problems. My original neighbor (two flights down from me) was attacked from her then boyfriend, and she ran up to my place from where she called the police to get the man out. The neighbor between us was attacked in her apartment (I don't remember the details), and couldn't deal with any noise coming from the apartment above her. And, in order to obey co-op rules "dead to rights" and keep a different nosy neighbor at bay, I had to install wall-to-wall carpeting over every square foot of the apartment, save the kitchen and bathroom.  

Yet, things could be much, much worse.  In the building next to mine, a neighbor was shot and killed by another neighbor who lived in the apartment below her. Sadly, he suffered from severe clinical depression, never got treatment, and spent the rest of his life behind bars until his death about 10 years ago. Strangely enough, the neighbor who now lives in the ground floor apartment is having trouble with the neighbor above her, and has had to call the police in regard to her upstairs neighbor. 

For the most part, things are not as bad as I've made them sound.  One problem we've had is a neighbor who has stored her property in a common area.

Although I'm not a fan of this neighbor, I have to trust in the collective wisdom of the co-op board and the law to address problems coming from people like this resident.  

From my untrained observances, there is a woman (who with her daughter) would be best served by living where she could get day to day assistance. One resident has talked to me (as a neighbor, and not as a board member) about this mother-daughter pair, and all I could do is say (because I am a board member) that the board has discussed this issue. And even that might have gone too far.

Apartment living is not for everyone.  To be "successful" at doing so, one has to have a thick skin, and an ability to deal with the quirks of each and every person with whom one comes in contact. 

One thing I can say - I've had a very interesting life here for the past 33 years!



Saturday, October 15, 2016

Quickie: Changes in plans

DCD was supposed to come over today and didn't.  Instead of having pizza for lunch, I had the leftovers from my dinner with Patty.  In many ways, this isn't a bad thing, as they would have gone to waste had he come over.

Shortly after I finished lunch, my brother called.  We have a few more issues to deal with that I now have to meet with him in person, and that means that GFJ will be accompanying me while we chat. However, I figure that I will take her to the Cradle of Aviation museum afterwards, as this is a museum I'd never go to due to its relative proximity.  (Go ask a New York City resident about whether he/she has ever gone to the Status of Liberty, and I'd bet that the person has never gone there.)  If I'm lucky, they will have the original Sperry gyroscopic autopilot on display, and I'll be able to make a quickie post on Laurence Sperry and one of his flights.

As I write this, I have no idea of what GFJ and I will be doing later this evening.  But it'll be nice to see her again, and I'm looking forward to a full weekend with her for a change.