"In three words, I can sum up everything I know about life: It goes on." - Robert Frost
If I correctly set the timer for publishing this post, it's my birthday today. I think I've reached a transformational stage of life that women frequently encounter at around this point. It's a tipping point of sorts. A realization that there is a lot yet to be done, and time is not unlimited, and I can accomplish much if I set my mind to it. I'm in a hurry to do it all and very much looking forward.
It's probably no coincidence that along with all the new things I want to do, there are some old things that I've outgrown. My long hair. Smoking. And this website.
No need to add lions and tigers to that. Take a look at the little fellow who visited my sister's campsite (here in NJ) recently while they were having lunch. He left coldcuts and pasta salad untouched but took off with a box of animal crackers. A bit cannibalistic, eh?
It's been a while since I had a bizarre dream to report. Last night's qualifies. I was going to New Zealand on a business trip but the plane landed in Australia instead. We (passengers) were told by the flight attendants that it was OK that we landed there because we could just take the shuttle over to NZ whenever we needed to. There was one leaving every 15 minutes all day, every day.
I remember being very relieved to hear that.
Next I was at the curb with my bags, and then I was getting into the car picking me up, and of course it was Nicole Kidman driving it. The steering wheel was on the right - is that true in Australia? Anyway I wasn't surprised to see her at all. She took us (someone was with me but I don't know who) on a road that had a MAJOR STRAIGHT UP AND DOWN HILLS on it - these things and roller coasters are the stuff of my nightmares and it's pretty clear that they symbolize anxiety for me even if I'm not consciously feeling any. Anyway, I held my breath and shut my eyes until I could feel we were on level ground again and when I opened them up we were pulling up to the curb at Nicole's house. Which was full of people having a party.
It was a very modest house, and the car was a blue PT Cruiser, in case you were wondering.
OK, maybe this one wasn't as weird as the aquatic donkey dream, but still.
We went to Reading, PA this weekend for a wedding. Because Sparky is close friends with the father of the bride, AKA "He Who is Paying For This Whole Thing," we were granted one of the 15 guest suites for an overnight stay. Below are some pictures and notes.
This is the main building of the estate. Reception was on the ground floor, guests stayed on the 2nd and 3rd floors.
Below is the carriage house where our room was at lower left.
Sparky Sr. and Sparky Jr.
This is one of the rooms in the main house. The bathroom was enormous but I didn't get a picture.
I was in a class all day today. A class on data. I love data, mind you, but I'd rather work with it than sit and listen to someone talking about it.
As if that wasn't painful enough, late in the afternoon we had to break into groups to do a case study "team exercise."
Anyone who's ever been part of corporate America knows what that is like. You have to plunge yourself into a group of other people you barely know who become "your" group just because they were sitting nearby. You wait for one person to volunteer as "scribe" or maybe just take that job yourself because it kind of absolves you of the next part - thinking. Where everyone in your group appears to have read a different set of instructions and either blurts out nonsense as a "solution" or seems to have gone mute. You have an hour to complete this assignment, but your group is totally done and has moved onto idle chatter after 20 minutes. At the end of the hour, the instructors start calling on the groups to present their results, and if you are not the one who scribed, you find yourself listening to all the ideas you didn't agree with.
Please remind me of all this the next time I sign up for a class, OK?
My hall smoke alarm went off tonight while I was roasting clams and broiling scallops and salmon and monkfish in the kitchen BECAUSE BECAUSE BECAUSE the gottdamned squirrles chewed a hole in the hose leading from the propane gas tank up to the grill therefore making outdoor cooking impossible. So-as not to waste $40 worth of premium seafood, I lit up the kitchen appliances.
Not long after, the smoke alarm started going beep beep beep, and my 15-year-old son remarked "that happened the other day while I was here alone."
Knowing his propensity towards lighting matches and burning and exploding things in general, I asked: "WHY?"
He answered without blinking: "Because I'm so HOT."
I drink my coffee black on weekdays and usually add half & half on weekends. Sparky, on the other hand, uses half & half (and sugar) religiously, all week long. So there's pretty much always some in the fridge.
Recently, though, I guess I forgot to buy it during my weekly grocery run and a few days later I noticed Sparky using some non-dairy powdered crap that we had around. I made a mental note to buy more half & half, but I didn't get to the store for a number of days.
When the half & half was back in da' house, I pointed this fact out to Sparky. His reply?
"I went almost a whole week without it. It was kinda like being on Survivor."
Hah. I think I just passed my philosophical twin, almost. Driving home from work, had just left Trenton, on 195 going east. My car: Black Prius, Tree-hugger plates, Flying Spaghetti Monster decal over the word Prius at the right side of the car rear.* His car: White Prius, Tree-hugger plates, Darwin decal, same location.
I passed him and lost sight, but an hour later and 50 miles away, heading north on the GSP, I spotted him again. Amusing.
* Do you know that in Canada they pronounce this DECK-el? And the Ma in Mazda sounds like the ma in mat instead of the mo in mom? I was in a movie theater in Ontario once and they kept repeating these words in the previews and I was the only one there cracking up. CRACKING UP.
I have been listening to CDs by Ekhart Tolle all week, in the car on the way to and from work. Pretty awesome, heavy-duty stuff, and I admit that my mind is quite blown by it. But as hard as I have been paying attention, I can't help but hear "eagle estate" when what he's saying is "ego-less state."