Thursday, August 24, 2017

An unexplained spike in blog views

There are some things that can't be explained in life, and the number of visitors to this site on the day I wrote this post is a spike that can't easily be explained.

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When I got up today, I didn't have much on the docket to do.  So I started my usual routine of watching the talking heads on one of the cable channels, and playing Candy Crush on my iPad. Sometime later in the morning, I got a text from RO that she wouldn't be able to make it this weekend as she had case of pneumonia and was running a 104 degree fever. And if this wasn't enough, GFJ hectored me a little regarding getting out and about:

I am concerned about you spending so much time inside. Maybe Marian could take a ride to Danbury Mall and window shop. Then have dinner outside at Stew Leonard's. Even if you are tired force yourself to go out and you will feel better.

To a degree, she is right.  But I'm tired of doing a lot of things alone.  I like being with people, and don't have the network of friends that I'd like to have to keep busy and ass a little meaning to my life.

- - - - - -

One of the things that does keep me busy each day is writing the daily blog entry. And I do judge my blog's popularity by the number of readers. It's not a large number most days. But today, this number spiked four/five fold. Since today's post (referring to the current post, and not this one to be published later) is relatively short and has few keywords, I can't figure out why the sudden interest in this blog.

If I could figure out if today's spike was because I said something interesting, I'd love to know what it is, so that I could tickle that collective nerve again.


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Two Days - Not much to report

Monday and Tuesday.  Not even halfway through the week, and I don't have much to say for either day. At least I was able to muster one night out as Marian.

- - - - - -

Monday came, and I had nothing much to do. As usual, I took it very easy and spent the day watching TV, working on a user guide for the NPW web site to be, and doing nothing that would require me getting showered and dressed.

However, when 6 pm came, I figured that I'd take a ride up to The Avenue in Newburgh and say hello to DD. Although I now have a conflict, she invited me to her daughter's baby shower, and I had considered attending. Unfortunately, I got there about 5 minutes before the store closed, and didn't want to get in the way of the store closing on time.

While on the road, I chatted with my brother. His cell phone was in the repair shop, as he had a cracked screen that needed replacement, and couldn't keep me informed about what was going on with renting the family homestead. He was thinking that I would change my plans willy nilly in regard to coming down on Saturday to sign the contract for the rental. I told him that I had plans which were made long ago (true) and wouldn't be able to make it there that day.  I could make it on Friday or Sunday, but this might foul up timing of being able to get my signature notarized. (Does a contract for a rental need notarization?  Probably not, but....)

- - - - - -

Tuesday came, and I had planned to spend this day as Mario. The Cat Lady and I were supposed to go out for dinner together. So I showered and dressed as Mario, expecting to drive to New Jersey to see her.

Late in the afternoon, I got a text. The Cat Lady had a migraine and wouldn't be able to make dinner tonight. That wasn't a problem for me, but I wish I had known this before taking my shower, as I'd have enjoyed another day out as Marian.  Instead, I stayed inside, doing a little more work on the NPW website user guide and watching TV.

- - - - - -

While I'm on the topic of TV, I have our (poorly) esteemed president on the tube. And I am sickened by what he's been saying as of late. His policies are not that favored by a majority of this nation's population, and his speeches are reminiscent of those given in Central Europe in the 1930's.

The lunatics have come out of the woodwork, and they are trying to control the asylum. With his administration's stated policies regarding transgenders, I've made an occasional post on Facebook regarding the sickness he's unleashed on this country. The "Alt-Right", Neo-Nazi, hyper-nationalist movements which POTUS has unleashed, and one Facebook friend has asked me for more information about how "undocumented" people are applying for asylum in Canada after using an unauthorized border crossing to leave the US. This friend is scared because of her being transgender, and I understand this well. So I sent her the link to a New York Times article which provides enough information to find this crossing point if she ever needs to use it.

Please note that I am not yet worried about things taking a sudden turn for the worse for TG's. The minute they do, I may end up being one of the people to consider an illegal border crossing, and hope for the best on my way out. Luckily, we still have a relatively free press. But if this institution fails, then the alarms may need to be activated....

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Two Generations

Mother and Daughter.  My mom always wanted a daughter, but never lived to see my transformation. But it is just as well. My brother and I have NO pleasant memories of her while growing up, and we are both glad that it is our dad that lived the long life. What I find amazing is how much we look alike (save hair style) at roughly the same age.

- - - - - -

With memories like we have, you might think that we harbor resentments against our mom. Well, I decided not to hold in feelings I once bottled inside me, and effectively forgave her. The way I like to put it is: I let things slide because feeding feelings of resentment would only make me feel worse.

My mom never would have understood me being transgender. Even now, things are not always easy to explain. Unlike many transgenders, I have no pressing urge to reconstruct my genitalia, even though I would have preferred to have been born with the alternate "plumbing" configuration. I socialize better as a female, and feel more at home in a female presentation. If given the chance (read: money), I would likely have the medical procedures needed to fully transition from male to female.

Where I would gladly give up any remaining male privilege I have to live life as a female, my mom would likely have preferred to be born a male. The female lack of privilege she experienced in her life must have galled the hell out of her. Yet, she accepted it because this was expected of females in her generation, and because she was a traditionalist who didn't like questioning the status quo.

Years ago, my dad said that my mom should have been born male. And I agree with him. She would never have been held back by her parents, so that she, the youngest daughter, would be the child to take care of them in their old age. What galls me about my grandparents is that I ended up losing part of my childhood to the role of being a babysitter for a grandmother who couldn't even get up to go to the toilet by herself due to a massive stroke. (My grandfather, thankfully, died 7 years before I was born.)  Luckily, the responsibility of taking care of my grandmother was shared between 3 of her 4 offspring.

- - - - - -

Would my grandmother have understood me?  Coming from a small Caribbean island, I doubt it. People who live in areas that are not cosmopolitan tend to be more conservative, and tend to see things in a more binary perspective. My grandfather would not have understood me at all, as he was a person who would be considered a non sexual child abuser by today's standards. No one who remembers him has any good words to say abut him. And I, one of two grandchildren who never met him, may be the only person who could say a good word in his behalf - even though I might have killed him had he lived to cause me trouble. (I'd have loved to push him down a long staircase for what he did to my mom, and for how her warped sense of punishment caused me issues while growing up.) I won't go into why I'd have that good word to say about him in this forum. But the reason illustrates how I can see things in many shades of gray.

Yet, through the lens of my maternal lineage, I can see many things that shaped my value system. And it is this same group of things that now shapes my niece's value system and causes her (like me, 35 years ago) to be unsure of getting married and of having children. Both of us have suffered through the capriciousness of people who are not introspective, and who see life as a simple binary. 

Strangely enough, my niece has warmer memories of my mother than I have. But then, my niece was the female descendant of my mom's line that that my mom never had. So my mother tended to spoil her grandchild in ways she could never do for me or my brother. When I talk about my mom to my niece, I am sure to mention the differences in how we were raised, and how we have very different impressions of my mom.  My niece respects my different view, and is comfortable with me talking about my past.

- - - - - -

One Russian author said that all happy families are alike, but unhappy families are unique. Time has proven this to be true in at least two generations of my mother's family. Hopefully, my niece will be able to break this pattern and have the happy family she deserves.

Monday, August 21, 2017

They say the neon lights are bright Off Broadway

I have avoided seeing "Sistas" for a while.  Was it prejudice?  Maybe.  Was it a preference for dramas or comedies over musicals?  Maybe.  But for the most part, it was ignorance about this Off-Broadway production.

- - - - - -

My alarms were set to wake me up at 8 this morning, in order to make it to church for the first time in months. However, not being able to sleep until 4 am the prior evening, I knew that I had to reset the alarms to get me moving by 10, so that I could meet HWV by 12:30, then get to the city on time for lunch and the play.

When I finally got moving, it was a little after 11. This still gave me enough time to get shaved, showered, made up, dressed, and out the door on time.  And for a change, I actually did so.  HWV wasn't yet ready, so I went to the bank for some folding money (which I ended up needing) before picking her up at her place. The drive to New York was totally uneventful, and traffic flowed well until we got off the Henry Hudson Parkway. And then, typical Manhattan traffic slowed us down a little. Yet, we made it to the parking lot with time to spare.  We then took a leisurely walk from the parking lot to the restaurant where I had made reservations the night before.

HWV had told me that NYC Restaurant week was on, and we decided to go to Becco. This restaurant is owned by Lidia Bastianich, well known for her PBS cooking shows. If one avoids drinks and dessert, this place would be affordable if one orders the unlimited pasta bowl with the three daily pastas.  However, we ordered the $29.95 lunch with some add-ons. And this pushed our bill to a still reasonable $75 (incl. tax/tip) for what we got.

- - - - - -

Next, it was a short walk to the theater. I wasn't too sure of what to expect. But the musical was pleasant and the music was familiar.  Would I have gone to see this play on my own? Probably not. Yet, it was a nice way to spend the day with a friend.

After the play, we went home with a stop by Stew Leonard's for some shopping. Neither of us expected to get away cheap, and both of spent as much on food as we did at lunch. While there HWV picked up a bouquet of flowers, and I commented: "Now I know that if Mario wanted to seduce you, all he would have to have done was keep buying you flowers."  She smiled, as I picked up on her love for having flowers in her house.

- - - - - - 

I dropped HWV off at her house, then unloaded my car, and put my foodstuffs in the refrigerator. And then GFJ called.  She spent the entire day on a beach in Maine, and then started driving home around 7:30.  By the time she called me, it was 10:30, and I was on the phone with her until she reached the Southbound NYS Thruway.

After this, I was free to finally strip and get ready for bed....

Sunday, August 20, 2017

A Saturday with nothing to do and things to be concerned with

If I had enough money coming in, I'd be taking the train to somewhere nice - like Canada. Unfortunately, I can not afford to take vacations whenever I want, and the news on the TV this morning made me worry about the future.

The first thing I do when getting up is to turn on the TV. And today's "headline" was a White Supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va. and a protest about the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue.  A loyal Republican said that he'd rather have Congress voted out to get the "Alt Right" out of his party, then talked about Nazi Germany, comparing Trump and the forces he unleashed to the forces unleashed in Hitler's era.  This means that loyalists in the GOP is now concerned about what they have become.

I am stuck here, and have to see how things work out.  I am not ready to cross the border and apply for asylum as a TG, as I would have no access to the monies I need to get by.  But although I'm worried, it is not the time to raise an alarm. We are starting to see signs in our opposition that sane people realize things have gone way too far and that this must be stopped now.

- - - - - -

Last night, I was unable to fall asleep until after 4 am. Again, I woke up around noon - 8 hours later.  Unfortunately, the reset I thought I was able to do on my circadian clock has to be redone, as I will need to start getting up earlier, now that they days are getting shorter.

Since I had nothing to do and no one to see, I ended up staying home and watching old movies on TCM.  Why put mileage on my car when I don't need to do so?   And I was pleasantly surprised by a series of John Wayne films which included She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, The Searchers, and The Quiet Man. How does one argue with that collection of films? Eventually, I realized that it was too late to go out and do anything. This is not much of a great loss for me today. But it hammers home the point that I must find new ways to socialize with people (preferably as Marian) so that I have reasons to get up and out for the day.

Around 10 pm, I got a call from GFJ that she was on the road, leaving Ellsworth Maine. For those of you who don't know the area, it's the last town on the mainland before Mt. Desert Island (Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park). Although she could have stayed in the house that she and her sister were renting for the week (Sunday AM arrival to Sunday PM departure), she didn't think of it early enough to do so.  Instead, she spent the day in Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park.  While on the phone, she mentioned that she couldn't find Mt. Desert Island - and was very surprised to find out that she was there all along.

For a good part of her drive, I was on the phone and looking for places at which she could spend the night.  The best places I could find for her were near Augusta's airport - and I was on the phone with her until she stopped at the first of the hotels. Although the first of the places only had expensive suites left, I'm pretty sure that the second place I mentioned had rooms at a reasonable price - as it was only 5 minutes away, and I had not heard from her afterwards.

- - - - - -

Tomorrow, it's off to New York to see an Off-Broadway play with HWV.  Hopefully, it'll be a good play. But I know we'll have a good time no matter what.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Volunteering and a visit with Pat.

Yes, I know you've seen this before.  It's a little short on me, but I like the color.  Now if only I had the waist and hips to do this dress right.

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When I got up, I had only one thing on my list of things to do - going to the GLBT center to do my weekly stint.  Before I went out to the GLBT center, I did some work for NPW and a user guide for its member organizations.  Although I didn't get that much done, I'm about a third of the way towards finishing a draft of this document.

Around 2:15, I left the house for the GLBT center. When I got there, I was assigned the task of doing a set of Powerpoint slides which can be used in tomorrow's meeting of the Over 65 group. The coordinator for the meeting found out that the NYS representative would not be able to attend, and needed to cobble up the basics for a presentation to be made when everyone comes in the morning.  It's far from perfect, but it's good enough for "almost government work". And then, I generated a poster to be used to promote a fund raising gala to be held next month.

- - - - - -

Once done at the GLBT center, I called Pat to see what she was up to.  She wasn't sure if she'd be busy with a computer tutor. So I killed some time in Starbucks (I needed a bio-break) before calling her back and starting on my way down to see her.  I brought some Chinese take-out with me, and we both proceeded to chat over dinner.  Pat can get very frustrating talking about conspiracies, and letting people off for being victims. (Even if I knew I was a victim, I could never allow that mindset to control me, as I'd never be able to make intelligent responses to unpleasant situations.  Victimhood is both being victimized and acting as a victim.  I choose not to act or respond as a victim, but as someone who has some control over her destiny.)  Boy, did Pat frustrate me tonight!

Next, it was a trip home.  Rain, Rain, Go Away! 

Just after I got in my car, the heavens slowly opened up. And I had to drive home through the wet stuff.  I was glad to be able to talk with Lili on the way home.  As with Pat, Lili expressed an interest in seeing a "performance" by Mel Brooks in NYC sometime in October.  Only one problem - the darned event sold out too quickly.  Such is life!

Friday, August 18, 2017

A day as Mario and a night as Marian

After last night's fiasco and wallet emptying, I know that I have to be more careful. I can't afford to pay locksmiths to come over to work on my door when I could have stashed keys with a couple of friends for safe keeping.  So I decided to live part of my day in Mario mode, to make it easier to take care of certain things, then change into Marian mode, to go to game night in Yonkers.

- - - - - -

I set all my alarms to go off today, as I had to be shaved, showered and dressed before the cleaning lady came this afternoon. Since I am usually able to wake up on time if something is very important to me, I was conscious before the 8:30 am alarm rang, and up removing the polish from my nails by 9:00 am.  

Around noon, I went out to get new keys cut.  12 keys for $24 - not a bad deal/not a bargain either, when you think of what some places would charge. This made me glad that I went to local hardware store. And afterwards, it was off to a local pizzeria for a sandwich.  When I finally got home at 1:30, I met my cleaning lady on her once per month visit. She wants me to go back to a bi-weekly routine, and I told her that once I find another job, she will go back to this schedule.

Once the cleaning lady left, I put the new keys in the pocketbook I used the night before, and made sure that I had my two sets of emergency keys ready.  (I should have gotten 3 sets: one for Lili, another for Vicki, and the third for HWA. But I can get that third set cut at any time. )

- - - - - - 

Later on, I changed into Marian and drove down to Yonkers for game night.  On the way, I stopped at Starbucks for some iced tea. Unfortunately, the person ahead of me was having problems with an order and delayed the rest of us for over 10 minutes. What should have been a 5 minute visit became 20 minutes - and I wasn't going to make it to game night for the first game.  Luckily, the first game at the second table didn't start until I got there.

Believe it or not, I won the first game. And then we switched to a game of Qwirkle, followed by two of the games I carry in the trunk of my car, Anomia and Man Bites Dog. In Marian Mode, I can't blurt out words as quickly as I can as Mario. So I was playing at a big disadvantage in a game where speed is of the essence. And then, with Man Bites Dog, I got a run of bad hands. But it is always fun, whether I win or lose. 

- - - - - -

On the way home, I worried a little about the new keys working in my door.  Although I tested them when I got home, I knew I will worry for a while until the sting of last night goes away. When the keys opened the door, I breathed a sigh of relief, entered the apartment, and got comfortable for the rest of the evening.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Lili, Vicki and the Locksmith - All in the same day

Embarrassment....  That's what one gets when one is en-femme when it is more appropriate to be en-homme.  Now I have a dinged door frame, and my wallet is $250 lighter.

- - - - - -

Around 1 pm, Lili called and suggested that we meet for dinner.  I mentioned that I was going out with Vicki, but would meet her for a late lunch.  By the time I was showered and dressed, I dawdled a little (watching a Western to its end) and lost track of time. Although Lili was a little upset that I was a half hour late, she was glad to see me. 

Lili and I talked of many things, including that she was back with her boyfriend.  Her conversation with her therapist got her thinking - he's not a forever man. But he's good enough for right now.  I talked about GFJ, the Cat Lady, and the lady from POF from New Jersey that I've been chatting with.  And then it was to my house, where I could rest until meeting Vicki in town.

- - - - - -

Vicki was a little late (she warned me ahead of time), and I let her choose today's menu. This was my birthday treat to her - and I was glad I could do so. I wish I could have talked more about how things are going with cleaning out her dad's place. But I focused on other things.  At least she was able to tell me about her cat dying and how busy she has been at the office.

- - - - - -

As always, our get togethers are way too short. So, around 9 pm, I took a drive to see where the sister church is to the one I normally want to attend. After this, it was up to Walmart. And then....

My house keys are missing!!!!!

I've had a problem with my key chain as of late. Several times, my house keys have separated from my car keys because of an insecure link between the two halves of the device. And tonight, I didn't notice the separation until it was way too late - after Samurai (restaurant in Croton) was closed.  I couldn't find the keys in Walmart. I couldn't find them in Samurai's parking lot. And I couldn't find them in my parking lot.  My nosy neighbor (who may have a copy of my keys) was not home. So I was screwed and knew I'd be very embarrassed when the locksmith came.

Calling several phone numbers, I got only two answers.  The first was from a service (which I later found out to be a scam - more info later), and the second from a local locksmith.  The second fellow gave me a quote which I knew to be reasonable (based on a neighbor's recent 11 pm experience) so I told him to come.  Both of us were embarrassed about our appearances. But he was very professional, and got the door open with 20 minutes of effort. (If I had a newer lock, he could have picked it easily and saved minor damage to my door frame. But I have an older lock that would either have to be drilled, or jimmied in a creative way. And that's exactly what he did.)  We talked for a bit, and he told me a lot about local affairs - including why the local hardware store in Croton closed down.

Now, I know there must be many more factors in the closing of the local hardware store. Scammers are using the addresses of many businesses (especially hardware stores) to pose as local locksmiths. The Croton hardware store's address was used for many of these scammers, and I'll bet that they were affected by victims badmouthing the store.

But I digress....

The locksmith told me about a bunch of scammers who are based overseas. A group comes over on a 6 month visa, and learns the art of forced entry.  Instead of charging $300 for late night service, they will charge $1000+ for drilling the lock just to get in the door.  AARGH!  I actually called one of these scammers first, and realized that the price mentioned was way too low.  So I called other local people and reached this fellow (Lee - from Reliable Locksmiths in Montrose) who said that he'd be over when he finishes with his current client. Around 11:45, Lee arrived, and he spent the next 20 minutes getting the door open. And then we chatted for another 30 minutes or so, with him telling me to pass the word on about locksmith scams.  If one wants to find a "local" locksmith and be sure that you're not calling one of these "scam services", google the name and address then get a street view.  You'd be surprised to find that 90% of the listings out there for locksmiths are fake.  He told me that one listing (now purged from Google) had the Cortlandt town hall as the business address.  So be careful if you need help!  Do yourself a favor and put copies of your keys with neighbors you can trust!

- - - - - -

On the whole, it was a good day.  Would I have done things differently?  Of course.  I'd have $300 in my pocket and not the locksmith's pocket.  But I can't complain.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

It was a nice day outside, but I stayed inside and cleaned.

I've noticed that I have had a lot of days as of late where I don't feel like bothering to take a shower, shave, do my face (if in Marian mode), get dressed, and then go out the door as either Mario or Marian.  If I go out, I will simply put mileage on the car and spend money that I don't need to spend. So I stay in.

Today was no exception to this routine, save that I decided to do two things:
  1. Laundry
  2. House Cleaning
My laundry consisted of 4 days of Marian Mode dressing, plus a few towels to justify doing a second load in the other washing machine. And given that my cleaning lady comes on Thursday, I want to make sure that this place is as "neat" as possible. So, while doing laundry, I also started to take care of books that will get donated to charity, as well as bringing both garbage and recyclables to the appropriate dumpsters.

While relaxing, I got a call from Vicki - and we will be going out for dinner tomorrow.  This time it's my turn to take Vicki out for her birthday. And we will be going to the same place we went to a couple of weeks ago. YUM!  However, I still have the pinched nerve in my left shoulder, so it is difficult for me to do much that puts a strain on the affected muscles in the area. And it is painful to even sit up to type this entry. Hopefully, it'll be gone before dinner tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Lunch with Patty

It was a rainy day today, and I almost regretted suggesting that Patty and I get together for lunch. But since it's been "forever" since I've seen her, I wasn't going to let an opportunity to keep in touch go by.

The last time I saw Patty was after our PMP prep course. And neither of us have bothered to study for the exam. Mind you, both of us are ambivalent about project management, but for different reasons. For me, I am not sure if I want to take the risk of failure in a job whose prime skill sets are the "soft skills" of managing people. I'm good ad managing schedules, but I am not as sensitive as many to unspoken social cues. With Patty, she doesn't want to work full time again.  Both of us have the same negative cash flow, but she has more options to fix that issue.

Patty was not surprised to see me in Marian Mode today. I warned her about this in advance, and noted that I'd likely be getting a mani-pedi later in the afternoon. As usual, she was a few minutes late. But when we finally sat down to eat, we chatted as if we were the closest of friends - and took 2 1/2 hours to finish our meals.  She asked about GFJ, and I told her about the situation between us.  Patty said that I should tell GFJ that I am considering dating again. But I said that I will say something when or if anything develops between me and another woman. However, I also noted that I am not really looking for a new love, as being TG seems to be getting in the way of romance. Given the choice of living as my authentic self and having romance, I will choose the friendships I'm making by being Marian.

All too soon, it was time to go. Patty had to pick up some pet food for her dogs, and I had to go home. Although I could have gone out again, I decided to stay indoors. There was nothing more for me to do out of the house, and all I could do to entertain myself on the outside would involve spending money - something I didn't want to do.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Once upon a time in America

Once Upon a Time in America.  It's a great film, but only the "Director's Cut" is worthy of that praise.  Other versions are bastardized either for time or for the censor. Sadly, it was a film way ahead of its time, and had to be bastardized to get this film to the American market.

- - - - - -

This morning, I had all the alarms ringing so that I had the option of going to church. However, I felt much more comfortable laying in bed after having a "long" sleep, and will try to go there next week if my schedule permits.

For the better part of the day, I watched the talking heads discuss politics on TV, as well as playing Candy Crush on my iPad. Yet, I realized that I had to get moving around 3 pm, so that I could be ready to go to the Drafthouse for a 6 pm showing.  I shaved, showered, made up my face, and got dressed - and got out of the house in time for me to do some window shopping at The Avenue.  No, I didn't buy anything there, but it was nice to browse through the dresses on clearance.

Next, it was over to the Drafthouse where I decided to have the Fish and Chips again.  Heck, I was early enough to actually see my food for much of the time I'd be eating in the theater. Only one minor issue - I misread my ticket, as I was in a different seat than usual. Watching the movie, I noticed 3 qualities of film stock. The first two types were high quality, and one could hardly tell them apart. The "lesser" quality stock was probably part of an earlier restoration of scenes to the movie. And then there was the reference print which was added back to the movie.  This film was not in the best of shape, and could probably be "restored" by computer technicians doing the equivalent of colorization on a black and white print. But it was left "as-is" for the most part, and helped add needed information to make sense of this movie. (Unlike the original American edit which told the story in chronological sequence, this edit meanders from the 1910's through the 1960's, going back and forth between eras to flesh out the story.)  Do I recommend this version - YES!  I hated the movie the first time I saw it, as I saw the original American edit.  I love this movie now, as it flows very well and it better explains why the characters do what they do in the movie.

- - - - - -

On the way home, I tried to call J from POF. She didn't pick up.  And then I tried to call Lili.  This is the second day in a row that she hasn't answered my calls.  So I know she's pissed at me for not being with her yesterday.  Sooner or later, she'll cool off.  Until she does, I'll keep doing other things and seeing other friends.

BTW: I'll be seeing Patty for lunch tomorrow.  And yes, I'll be in Marian Mode.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

I didn't expect to wake up THIS late today!

I'm glad I warned Lili that I couldn't make it today.  If I had known how long I'd be sleeping, it have shocked even me. My head hit the pillow around 2:30 or so, and I don't remember the clock striking 3. So when I woke up to find my cell phone saying 12:20 pm, I was shocked!

- - - - - -

When I finally got up today, I proceeded to make myself lunch (some meat loaf I cooked the night before), and then wrote a couple of entries for this blog that I'll post at some future date. (Both involve hotels I booked online and the experiences I had at these places.)  But this still left me with an important question.  What should I do with the rest of my day?

Several times I thought about going outdoors, but I ended up saying "No" each time. I was enjoying being in bed in my jammies too much. So I ended up writing a couple of blog entries for future posting about two hotels that I stayed in. And then I decided to relax, as I didn't have much worth doing outside.

I did nothing of note until the evening, when I called up one of the ladies from POF. And we had a conversation that lasted almost 3 hours! It reminds me of the conversations I had with my wife when we first answered each others' personal ads. And we will speak a lot more as we get to know each other. There are reasons that I passed on this woman the first time I saw her respond to me, and I will talk about them later if things warrant. They may be minor issues or major ones - only time can tell.

- - - - - -

Tomorrow, I have to get up and get moving - if only to see a movie at 6 pm. And again, this will be a day out in Marian mode - the 6th day in a row.  It's nice to be able to have kept polish on my nails for this long....


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Catching up on volunteer work

OK - I have to admit it.  I am very lazy at heart.  But I know that it is best to get work out of the way as early as possible, as that allows for the greatest amount of time to do things without pressure. 

- - - - - -

I got up earlier than usual today, as I had to visit NPW at 11:00 am.  As things happened, I didn't need to rush - NPWJ was running late, and I could have relaxed on the drive to Mt. Kisco.  Once I got there, I ended up waiting longer than I'd have liked. NPWJ's assistant took a little time coming out to greet me - she was busy in back. It was about 11:30 - 11:45 before all 3 of us got into gear and got our discussion going.

It's hard to believe that we last met in May. And it's even harder to believe that I didn't get a damned thing done in 3 months. But they are close to going live with the new site, and I'm glad. A change to the logon screen was needed, and I made it today. And then, I agreed to write up a user guide, and get it to them in a couple of weeks. Hopefully, I'll make enough time available to do this in between the other things that are taking up my time.

- - - - - -

When I was done at NPW, I ended up driving home to rest for a while.  And then, I decided to go out for a drive and do some window shopping in Paramus. There was nothing at Catherine's I wanted to buy right now, save for two necklaces whose brooches could be removed and used separately. (Buy a necklace, and get a brooch.) Although I found a pair of trousers and a tunic that looked good on me, I decided to leave before I spent any money.  So I went over to The Avenue and saw nothing. But in Sears, they had a Lands End dress at half price.

The dress's fabric was similar to this dress, and it was on sale for $30.  I almost tried it on. if I really want to buy it, I will return sometime in the next few days. But I think I have enough summer dresses in my closet right now.

Then it was onward to home.  Speaking with Lili, she told me of tomorrow's mission to choose a wedding banquet venue. One problem - I'd have to be moving by 7:30 am.  And the way I feel, there is no way I'd be able to be ready on time. So I had to pass on Lili's invitation.



Friday, August 11, 2017

I lost on a gamble, but it didn't cost much.

A few days ago, I decided to gamble on a "pig in a poke" by buying a $20 "Mystery" dress from sight unseen. That dress came in today while I was at the GLBT center, and it was a pleasant surprise to see it when I got back home.

- - - - - -

But first...

I took my time in getting up and ready for the day. And I still didn't make it out the door until 2:15, with the idea that I'd arrive at the GLBT center by 3 pm. Well, I was close to making that scheduled arrival, as I arrived a couple of minutes after 3.

They didn't have too much for me to do. The first thing I was assigned to do was to edit a form, so that the salient information would fit on both sides of a large "check sized" piece of paper.  This way, the addressees could respond by sending a check with this slip in another envelope, allowing the GLBT center to save on its printing costs. After a couple of edits, I got this task done, then proceeded to edit their web site to include a new support group. And then I was done for the day.

While there, I heard that a grand jury is being convened in regard to Trump's involvement with Russia. Couple this with congress preparing to create another bill to tie the president's hands in regard to dismissing the special investigator, as they did sanctions on Russia, Iran, and North Korea, and we're seeing the democratic process working to protect America from this tyrant-want-to-be. I'm just not sure if a hamstrung corrupt president is better than a "trustworthy religious zealot" as president.  Either way, the GLBT community loses.

I then drove home and saw the package from Mod Cloth sitting by my door.  Although I couldn't wait to try on this dress, I needn't have rushed to do so - it didn't fit around my waist.  So this was a $20 (plus shipping and tax) gamble that I lost. But I can always donate it to charity and have someone benefit from my losing gamble.

- - - - - -

Next, it was back to lower county, this time to Yonkers for game night. One of our regulars had her sister and her sister's boyfriend in attendance, and we all had a great time. Of course, it was good form to have fun knocking Trump tonight - and I had a series of well oiled, good jokes in hand that made people smile.

Not much more to say, but it was the 3rd day in a row that I've been in Marian Mode, and I expect to be in Marian Mode until Monday.  If the Cat Lady is unavailable then, I will likely stay in Marian Mode for the rest of the week. But if she is available, having a string of 6 days in Marian Mode is a good run!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

My last day of Speech Therapy for the semester

I feel a little sad.  Today was the end of my sessions with this speech therapist in training. And she is someone I'd like to keep in contact with over time - I'm just interested (as an older person) in seeing a young person succeed in life.  Sadly, this will not be the case. But hopefully, we will bump into each other now and then.

- - - - -

As usual, I had a hard time getting moving today. But it was not a hard a time as usual, as I made sure to get into bed earlier than before and to make sure that I avoided foods which could elevate my blood sugar before my bedtime. This, I think, may be a direct cause of me staying awake later than I would normally want.

Although I was "up and running" before 11 am, I still took my time before rushing out the door. This was just as well, as we had a severe thunderstorm alert. And the last thing I wanted to do was to drive in a torrential rain storm (which could also bring some hail into the mix). So I waited as long as possible, then drove to Mercy College for the last time this summer.

Since I've always wanted to see where one road came out, I decided to take an exit off of the Saw Mill Parkway that is regularly unavailable to me because of heavy traffic.  I figured that the road would drop me onto Route 9 a little North of Irvington (it did), and that I wouldn't lose too much time taking this detour (no way to tell).  Using this route, I made it to Mercy a couple of minutes late.  Luckily, I had my check in hand. So I didn't lose any time before my session.

I won't go into too much about today's session, save that I got a review of my progress that I can use next semester when the next therapist in training takes over. I did a lot of vocal exercises today. And they were very pleased with my progress on all fronts.  Hopefully, with vocal therapy taking place over a longer period, next semester's work will have greater, and more noticeable results.

- - - - - -

Next, it was off to The Avenue in Yonkers. I had no plans to buy anything. But I always enjoy examining the goods in the store. When I entered the store, I was "accosted" by a saleslady. And we ended up chatting for over a half hour on many things. Why a half hour? Well, it was pouring outside, and I didn't want to get wet.

When I was done there, I drove up to Mohegan Lake to meet with Lili for dinner. We had a nice dinner.  But she is having trouble dealing with her "ex" boyfriend, as she's afraid to go without a boyfriend in her life.  As for me, I recognize that GFJ is still taking off the edge that I'd feel if we had totally severed the ties that bound us together.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

A day with YGM

YGM and the Soup Dumpling.  Yum!!!  One of these days, the two of us will get to this restaurant again.  But first, I'll get back to her place before summer ends....

- - - - - -

I had about 3-4 hours of sleep the night before, and having the alarms wake me up was difficult. Even though I was first awakened at 8:30 am, I couldn't get moving until 9:30, and couldn't get out of the house until 10:45. This meant that I wouldn't arrive at YGM's place until roughly 1 pm.

The GPS took me on a slightly circuitous route around Hartford, dumping me into a construction related traffic jam on I-91. Since I was mellow, relaxed, and not in any hurry (no, I was not drinking or smoking anything), I chilled to the music from my cell phone and oozed through traffic.  Once through the mess, it was clear sailing to Colchester.

When I arrived at YGM's house, she wasn't home.  She had forgotten I was arriving around 1 pm, and had taken her kids to an indoor rock climbing place.  (They loved it, but that's a story for another time.) She told me that her door was open, and that I could go inside, change into my bathing suit, and relax in the pool until she returned. Immediately after this, she called again, telling me that she was on her way home, and that a neighbor, KP, (whose  own kids were climbing the wall) would be bringing YGM's kids home. So, I stripped, put my breast forms into the bathing suit, hopped into the suit, and started to soak in the pool.

YGM soon came home, changed, and joined me in the pool.  After a half hour, both of us got out of the pool, and I was relaxing in my bathing suit and cover up when KP arrived. The three of us adults relaxed while the three children played in the pool. Then YGM's mom came home, and started feeding us.  (YGM's mom is both kind and religious.  And she is generous to a fault.  I'm very glad that YGM told her not to try to convert me to her faith.) We kept going well after dinner time, when KP had to leave for home, so that she could get enough sleep to wake up at 4 am.  Hopefully, I'll see KP (and her husband) again, as she seems like a very nice person. 

Soon afterward, it was my time to go home - and I hit a nasty construction related traffic jam in Hartford. If it weren't for this jam, I might have been able to make it home in 2 hours. Instead, I lost 30 minutes to the jam, and barely made it home awake.

Did I mention that YGM outed me to her mom?  Yes - but her mom accepts me for who I am as Marian, and not as being assigned Mario at birth.  I would have appreciated it if YGM had not done so, but I feel that she had her reasons. One thing I know was that YGM referred to my late wife as my late spouse in conversation with KP. I had just mentioned my speech therapy at Mercy College, and being widowed came up. Does KP have a clue that I'm trans?  Who knows. But I have no problems if YGM outs me again...

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Visiting the FDR and AER houses with GFJ

Believe it or not, I woke up "on time" today. But it helped that I had a full series of alarms set to wake me up in time to shave, shower, and dress, and get to Hyde Park by 12:30.

- - - - - -

There is still a part of me that would like to resume a relationship with GFJ. So I proceeded to drive to see her today, and use her new Senior Pass to get into the Eleanor Roosevelt and FDR homes for free. By the time I get to buy one, it will cost 8 times as much. OUCH! GFJ noted that it looks like we'll be going to these sites more often, but who knows....

First on our list of places to see was Eleanor Roosevelt's home, Val-Kill. Compared to the FDR home (which I've been to before), it is very cozy, and the kind of place where I would feel at home - If I had the money to afford a "cottage" like this.

Unlike the formality of FDR's place, virtually everyone (and that included all dignitaries) entered via the back door. As Mrs. Roosevelt said: "My back door is my front door." (I could think of many snarky comments for that line, but I'll leave them alone for now.) Entering into the home, one senses a warmth not found in the FDR house.

This is a cozy office, isn't it?  Yet, the house could and did hold "large" dinners for 30-40 people.

You will note this table is set for 6 people.  Often, she would use folding tables to seat large groups, as well as serve everything buffet style and have people seated in the living room.

One thing of note. Virtually all of the tables in the living room had folding leafs. This allowed people to bring their plates into this room, and have an informal dinner.  Our guide mentioned that Eleanor would often tell her cook to set the table for 10, and have 30 people come for dinner. So one cook of note always planned to cook for 40 people, no matter what Eleanor said at the beginning of the day.

Val-Kill is set on a beautiful piece of land. And the following shots should help illustrate that fact.

Could you imagine the views on this land in the Fall when the leaves change?  Eleanor had a better place to live than her husband. And that's saying a lot.

- - - - - -

Next came the FDR house.  This is where I wished we had the shade of a few trees for the walk to the house. (The following photo is the original main entrance to the property at 4 pm.)

And this is the house itself at 5 pm.

Since I've photographed and discussed this house before, I won't talk about this part of the day.   Instead, I'll forward to having dinner at the Hyde Park Brewery.

- - - - - -

Across the street from the FDR house is the Hyde Park Brewery.  GFJ suggested that we stop there for some food. And we enjoyed a nice chat over a very good meal.  I had the "Hangover Burger" with a beer, while GFJ had a salad. I highly recommend this place before "rush hour" begins (they open at 4 pm on weekdays) for a casual meal.  When you go there, look for the mosaic of Simple Simon and the Pie Man on the floor. You'd never know it, but the building used to be a Howard Johnson's, and they kept that one element after they overhauled the building to be what it is today.

When we got out of the restaurant, we noticed that there must have been a heavy rain, based on how much moisture was evaporating from the pavement.  We then kissed each other, and said goodbye.  At this point, I realized that the chemistry we once had was no longer there, and vowed to throw out the last of her things (a pillow) I still had in my place. After 5 months, I figure it's time to toss out the pillow, and wean myself from the past....

Monday, August 7, 2017

Once Upon a Time in the West

The above picture does not do the movie justice.  For those who have not seen it, Once Upon a Time in The West is a Sergio Leone masterpiece that ranks up there with The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.  And this movie was on my schedule for the evening.

- - - - - -

I was awakened by Lili, as she was looking for a shoulder to cry on. Although she has broken up again with her boyfriend, she still feels for the man. Her romance is like an on-off switch that keeps getting flicked up and down. I never know how she will be feeling about the man until I hear her on the phone. Since I was going to the movies later on, Lili's plans to spend a day together were dashed, and I was spared the onus of going out and having a very wet shoulder.

Next was a set of messages from GFJ.  She wants to see me before she goes away on vacation with her sister.  I told her about the movie, and she realized that she had forgotten about my plans for the day.  So we will meet sometime tomorrow and do something.

At this point I was wide awake. And I didn't know what I wanted to do for the rest of the day, save go out to a movie.

- - - - - -

Around 5:15, I started my drive to the Drafthouse. And I settled into my seat a little before 6 pm.  There was one minor glitch that I didn't have to worry about - the ticket I had listed the wrong theater number. This wasn't a problem, as they undersold the venue - and I had a few seats to spread out.  But I'm not sure that I'd have the fish and chips again.  No, the fish and chips were very tasty and I'd have them again at another venue. Unfortunately, when you can't always see what you're eating, it's hard to enjoy a basic mean when it's hard to eat the food.

Did I yet tell you that I was in Mario mode today?  If I had a more feminine face, I would have gone out as Marian sans makeup - as many women would do. But I was lazy, and figured that since I was seeing GFJ tomorrow, another day as Mario wouldn't hurt.  Yet, it was strange in the theater, as this was the second day in a row that I felt strange not having a handbag to put on the seat next to me.  Go figure.

- - - - - -

On the way home, I chatted with GFJ.  I realize that I'd better be a little more careful in keeping things from her.  Although I told the truth that I saw "The Big Sick", I didn't mention that I was with the Cat Lady.  Vicki and Lili want for me to be honest about dating. It's that I'm not ready to do so until we both breach the topic of dating again....

Such is life.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Saturday night at the movies....

"Saturday night at the movies, who cares what picture we'll see?" 

I still love that tune - and it was fitting for an evening out with the Cat Lady, even though we are not romantically involved.

- - - - - -

The only thing I had on my plate for the day was dinner with the Cat Lady, followed by a movie.  So I didn't bother doing much of anything important during the day except to read and catch up on my electronic correspondence.

Around 3 pm, I started getting ready to go out. And I arrived at the Cat Lady's place shortly after 5 pm.  We were able to have a leisurely German Dinner at what has become one of our standby restaurants, and still make it to a 7:15 showing of "The Big Sick".  It was a very pleasant film, not a great one. It tells the story of a Pakistani man who fells for an American lady - with one key problem: His parents want to arrange a marriage between him and a Pakistani woman.  Yes, it is a story that has a happy ending.  But it gets there via an unusual route, and is well worth seeing.

After the movie, we went back to the Cat Lady's house and talked for a while.  She apologized for not inviting me inside, as she was very tired (which was a blessing tonight, as I forgot to take my allergy pills earlier).  At this point, I bid her goodbye for now, and then drove home.

On the way home, I chatted with Lili.  She was driving home from her son's place in Connecticut. And she forgot the inconsequential request I made of her to look for a certain brand of soda (Diet Moxie) that I found was once sold in Orange Connecticut. I didn't figure that she'd remember this, and I was right. Unless things are familiar to her, she doesn't remember them well.

- - - - - -

As you can guess, I have a true New Yorker's attitude about things.  So when Lili realized that she forgot about the soda I asked for, all I did was to mention the name of this Deli in Peekskill....

Saturday, August 5, 2017

NPW Cancelled - Now what to do?

This morning, I got an email from NPW asking if we could postpone today's meeting.  I answered that it was not a problem, as I would be available next week.  (What I didn't say was that I didn't do much work on this project, and I hit a creative roadblock.)  So this presented me with a problem - what do I do now?

- - - - - -

One of the things I've wanted to do lately was to go to Coney Island and see the Sideshow by the Seashore and Burlesque by the Beach.  This would mean that I either drive to Brooklyn and kill a bit of time there, or take the subway and ride home late at night.  Well, there is no way that this gal was going to take a late night subway ride, so I immediately crossed that option off my list.

That still left me with both an open day and evening to fill in with activities.  My question still was: What should I do today?

- - - - - -

For the most part, I stayed in and watched TV. Around dinner time, I texted BXM to see what she was up to, and it was nice to find that she was going out on a date. She deserves to be with someone nice. But what about me? What should I do? I still wanted to hang out with someone for a little while, so I called Lili to see if she had eaten yet.

Lili was still feeling a little down in the dumps again, as she had just broken up with her boyfriend again. So we ended up going to the local IHOP for dinner. If it was earlier in the day, I'd have had pancakes. But having French Toast with Maria the other day made me want something other than a flap jack for dinner. So I chose the fried chicken - which was overdone as expected.  It was good to chat with Lili, as I really didn't want to be "too much" alone. (I am not the "Greta Garbo" type, if you get my drift.)  And it was just enough time being with another person to take the edge off of things.

Once done with Lili, I drove to the local Carvel for some ice cream. The reason I note this is not the ice cream, but a woman of my generation I saw there.  She was short and thin and had a few tattoos. What I noticed most is a buzz cropped haircut. Could she have decided to shave it all off?  Or, did she have cancer, and her short hair was a result of chemotherapy?  I'll never know.   But we shared the same name, and I would have loved to chat with her for a while had she not been accompanied by her husband and her grandson.

- - - - - -

On the whole, this was a good day.  Tomorrow, I'll switch back to being Mario for a date with the Cat Lady. And then it's back to being Marian for at least a week or two.  YAY!!!!

Friday, August 4, 2017

Volunteering before Game Night

Thursday....  Volunteering at the GLBT center and Game Night.  I've been getting bored with volunteer work as of late, and it shows. But I never seem to be bored with Game Night.  Today, I wasn't bored with either....

- - - - - -

Lili woke me up this morning, but I wasn't in the mood to rush my shave, shower, and makeup routine to see her.  I needed to rest, as I was very tired from several days of not sleeping enough. So I said I'd talk with her later, and rested until a little before 1 pm. At that time, I proceeded to get ready - and made it to the GLBT center around 3 pm.

When I arrived at the GLBT center, I got a surprise. There was work befitting my skill set.  There were two things for me to take care of:
  1. Finding out what was needed for the GLBT center to send out mass mailings at the non-profit bulk mail rate.
  2. Completing the setup of the new closed circuit TV system which will now be used to record suspicious activity. (This is important, as they now feel that they must prepare for disturbances catalyzed by POTUS's anti GLBT tweets, statements, and actions.
Although I think I found out what they need, I know that I need to find someone who has done this before, so that the GLBT center doesn't make any mistakes on its first attempt to do a simple bulk mailing.  When I mentioned this to the director, he mentioned NPWJ as a reference - and I said: "Of Course!"  So I took my notes, and said that I'd talk to her when I see her tomorrow.

Next, I started my research into completing the installation of the Closed Circuit TV System. I made the call to Verizon, and found out that the fellow who did the installation work did not give us enough information to complete the supposedly "easy" job. I mentioned this to the other director, and she will make sure that he finishes up the job when he returns.  This is one time where I wish I was making the phone call, as I know enough to get the information and to call Verizon back. But, as Freddie Prinze, Sr. once said: "Eeet No My Yob!"

- - - - - -

I still needed to pick up some snacks to bring to game night, as I hadn't brought anything from home. So, I took the slow road to lower county, stopping off at Trader Joe's to do a little shopping. If this were winter, I'd have picked up some stuff to go home later in the evening. But it was summer, so I could only pick up some chips and other shelf stable items that I could leave in the car for a while. On the checkout line, the lady manning the register commented on the dress I was wearing. (See picture.)  It seems that I'm getting a lot more compliments these days on what I wear. I hope it means that things are starting to click with the way I'm now presenting myself to the world.

Once I was done, I continued the slow trip to game night with a stop at Panera bread for dinner.  While there, my brother called to tell me that he got the care packet from the prospective renters of our family homestead. And he will be analyzing it overnight to find out whether we should be renting to this couple.  (I didn't respond to his call until I got into my car. I wasn't going to speak in my feminine voice while on the phone to him.)

And then it was off to game night.  I got there "on time" and had the chance to play two games.  For a change, I won the first game. And then played another game which I lost. It was a good night for me, and got even better when the hostess arrived home at 11 pm. I didn't leave until everything started breaking up around 11:30 pm.

- - - - - -

On the way home, I had the chance to chat with GFJ.  There was no way I wanted to see her this coming weekend, as I already had arrangements with the Cat Lady for Saturday. But I did suggest having lunch early in the week before she goes away next week for a week and a half.  At least I'll be able to schedule 3 Saturdays in a row with the Cat Lady, unless she also takes time off to see Old Sturbridge Village and Boston with a female friend from out of state.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Maria... I just met a friend named Maria.

Believe it or not, I woke up well before my first alarm rang at 7:30 am.  This is very unusual for me, but there's a part of me that is able to program my body to awaken at a certain time IF I have a reasonable amount of sleep beforehand. That condition must have been fulfilled, as I got a little more than 4 hours of solid sleep.

- - - - - -

When I got moving, I realized that I had to stay moving if I wanted to see Maria. So it was shave, shower, make myself up, get dressed, and get out the door. One thing - I went looking for a pair of stockings because it might be as cool as it was yesterday.  But by the time I put them on, I ended up taking them off, as I felt better and more comfortable with them off.  This was the right choice, as the weather was to hit 80 later in the day.  

Although I was running a little late, it wasn't too bad. I was able to make it to the diner by 9:45, and Maria and I had a nice leisurely breakfast and chat before she had to go and see her client at 11:30.

Maria has a daughter for whom linking actions with consequences is very difficult. She has a hard time seeing how a decision with a chain of expected events can cause her problems. So Maria has to be extra careful, as she has a grandson's life that depends on Maria being alert to things which may happen.  And so far, Maria has been able to take care of some of the responsibilities that her daughter is unable to shoulder on her own.  Fortunately, Maria's other daughter is doing well, and I can see a situation where the daughter gets married to the gentleman she is living with.  This daughter is able to manage her life well, and Maria is proud of her. Sadly, Maria is no longer in contact with any of her blood family, her father having poisoned the goodwill that should exist between a woman and her siblings.  In fact, her father has sold the family homestead, and has left no forwarding address for Maria to contact him. It's a sad thing when a child will never meet his great aunts or his great grandfather. And this makes me thankful for what I have with my family.

- - - - - - 

After I was done with Maria, I drove up to Curvy Consignment Plus and didn't find anything worth buying. However, I mentioned that I might be looking for work - and the lady gave me an application.  I guess that they could use another minimum wage person to staff the store, and that I present a good enough image to be there.

Stopping at home, I found that the mailman had delivered a package I ordered from Target. It was nice to receive a navy blue dress that I could wear in the summer with a matching shrug (bought elsewhere) to cover my shoulders.  So I just had to put it on before going out again. Although this picture of me in it is a terrible selfie, what do you think?

I then took my time driving to Dobbs Ferry for my weekly speech therapy session. The therapist in training complimented me on my dress, so I know that at least one other person likes my appearance.  I'll feel a little sad when this summer session is over, as I like the grad student who is conducting my sessions. However, I hope that I'll be able to get weekend sessions, as weekday sessions might interfere with me getting a job.  I'll deal with that issue when/if it becomes something that gets in the way of work.

At this time, all I had to do was deposit some money in the bank, so that my brother could pay some bills for the family homestead. And for this, I drove over to Mount Kisco - even though I could have gone to Ossining to do the same thing.  Yes, I wanted to browse through some more clothes, and this was the closest place I could do so.

- - - - - -

When I got home, I took a rest then made a couple of phone calls to women who responded to my POF ad.  Both were nice ladies, and I wouldn't mind talking with them some more. But will I have the time to see them?  Who knows?  But I'd like to know if there could be a spark with someone new....

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Quickie: If it weren't so cold....

This is where I would have been today had it not been so cool out.  It's the middle of summer, and the daytime temperature is expected not to break past the mid 70's - not ideal for a dip in the pool.

Several days ago, YGM invited me to take a dip in her pool.  And it would have been nice to get another day's wear out of my swimsuit, if the weather had been warm.  Unfortunately, this was not the case. If I had awakened early, I still might have gone out to see her. But, with a sleep schedule that is so far out of whack as mine, I'll be lucky to be able to see Maria for breakfast tomorrow morning.  At least, YGM was very comfortable with my postponing my visit for a week.

- - - - - -

Since I had nothing better to do today, I stayed in and relaxed. (That's becoming a theme in my life these days.) I took care of transferring money from one of my bank accounts to another, so that I could deposit a check into the account my brother and I pay bills for the family homestead. But I didn't bother doing much of anything else today.

I shouldn't have said "didn't bother much of anything else ."  Instead, I should have included the phrase "- except cooking."  Lunch was some stir fried beef in a tortilla wrap, with leftovers I could eat on another day. Dinner was the meatloaf I planned to cook for a while, and was made better by pouring in some onion soup for flavor while it was cooking in the oven. (One can never have too much onion flavor in a meatloaf.) And now, I have leftovers to last me several days.

- - - - - -

Tomorrow, I have breakfast with Maria and speech therapy at Mercy College.  Hopefully, I'll figure out something to do afterwards other than laundry.


Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Sometimes, I need a reason to get up in the morning.

When one's sleep cycle is totally screwed up, it's hard to get up early enough to meet someone for lunch. Today, I had to set all of my alarms to get me moving and awake enough to be able to go to lunch with Vicki #2.

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Getting up at 9:am (or before) is normally difficult for me these days, and I do it begrudgingly. Yet, I will do it gladly to see a friend. In this case, I wanted to have enough lead time before meeting Vicki for lunch.  After showering, shaving, making up my face and getting dressed, I barely had enough time to make it to Irvington in time for lunch.  But I needn't have worried. Although I was running late due to taking the Saw Mill River Parkway to the wrong exit, Vicki was also running late. So making it to the Black Cat at a little before 1 pm was not a problem.

Normally, I'm bright eyed and bushy tailed when I meet Vicki. But with the rain and being tired from a lack of sleep, I was not running on all 4 cylinders.  With that being said, we had a nice lunch.  I told her that I'd like to try and introduce her to her namesake - and she gave me ideas about her schedule which may make this possible.  But all too soon, it was time to leave - and I went home for a nap.  On my way out of the place, one of the people from the FFGoWs saw me, and said hello.  (This is the same woman who saw my Marian Mode ad on OK Cupid.)  It was nice to see her, but it was not the right place and time to ask her out for a cup of coffee - if only to build up another friendship as Marian.

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Once at home, my brother called to tell me that the family home is about to be rented. The two interested people accepted our price, and we hope to get things such as credit checks and other paperwork completed by the end of the week - all in time for a September occupancy.  It's about time!  My brother is burnt out from everything, and I can't take on the local tasks to finish up the place.  So we will hire it all out once we receive the security deposit.

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A little later, I drove up to The Avenue in Newburgh. There, I chatted with DD while another lady was trying on outfits she could wear for work and play.  (Damn!  I wish I had her body!) And then, I saw a dress I had to try on.

This dress looked good on me.  But I wasn't going to buy it, as I've been spending way too much money this month.  If I were going to work as Marian, I'd have bought it in a heartbeat. But this is not the case. So I left it on the rack, and bought a Navy Shrug that I knew I needed.

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Next on my list of things to do was a stop at the local Shoprite for groceries. While there, I met V from the church I occasionally attend. We chatted a bit, and then it was time to leave. It seems like the reason I needed to get up was to be with people. And this I accomplished better than expected....