Thursday, April 29, 2010

Zoning out

It's a new day. The temperature is rising and we're barreling towards the weekend. We have Elvis at the theatre on Saturday. Join us. We were there last night for another rehearsal and "clean up". All the painting and scenery work we have been doing for Alice needed to be tucked away so that Elvis has full use of the theatre on Saturday and it won't look like an art class. It is complete. Hanging the backdrop for the Queen's castle is just beautiful. Melissa, you will be well back-dropped. Congrats to all the artists. I am getting more and more excited about this show. It is so great to see it all come together. We have a few more weeks of rehearsal, and a few characters who are giving us some concern, but all in all, it is a wonderful show. I am still shaking my head this morning from a trip in the car yesterday, and it occurred to me that we are all in one zone or another. If you are in the "gray hair" zone, you will be driving about 20 mph, no matter where you are. If you have ever driven at 20 mph, you know that it is inadequate as a travel speed. It is a speed that you pass when you are accelerating up to another speed, or slowing down to stop; but not a speed that you maintain, especially in traffic. Now, I have gray hair, but I have not shrunken to four foot nothing, and I do not travel in oblivion, staring straight ahead with no apparent concern for what is going on to the left or right of me. All of these things amount to a "gray hair" zone. It is a perfect storm. Those who travel at 45 mph are in the "normal" zone. They are more inclined to speed up or slow down, according to traffic requirements, but prefer to maintain a nice steady speed without any apparent rush or hurry-up type of travel. Then there is the "Busy" zone. These are drivers who are busy, and travel at the safest maximum speed allowed to get to where they are going. If there is a straightaway, they speed up to the safest speed. Slowing down around curves and corners is necessary, but only to the speed that allows you to make that curve or corner without danger. Then it is back to the quickest speed allowed. This zone does not allow for sight-seeing or nature watching. It is the "get me there" speed that is so important to commuters, mothers on the way to school and those who are catching a train. I am in this zone. "Busy" drivers are good drivers in a zone that would like to get things frigging done as fast as possible. I do not want to look out the window and see the nature passing by. When I am on my way to work, or working in my car (that happens alot-I travel around town very often). I want to get it done, and I want to move on. Gray hairs are impossible. They make me crazy. "Normal" is tolerable, but I will pass them whenever the road allows. Once past, I can sit back and breathe again, because not breathing is what happens when one of these drivers gets in front of me. The next time you're out there, take a look at your speedometer. What zone are you in?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

There's Snow in them thar hills

Not alot of snow, nothing that would have to be plowed or shoveled, although the car windshields will need a bit of attention, but yes, we have snow here in Caroga. It was cold enough last night, the pellet stove was ramped up and it was toasty here in the living room, but I never thought snow. For me, I think this might be a personal best. I do remember once seeing snow in July in Litchfield Connecticut, camping with my folks, but nothing stuck to the ground. This snow has stuck, and so, I think it is the latest snow I have ever witnessed. Bailey was nonplussed, he just went out and did his business (he's the only one who gets up with me and Allison, the other two are sleeping in with Jerry) but came back rather quickly-too cold I imagine for any exploring. He is a good dog. He comes when he's called, and he also worries with me about Jake, who is a wanderer. The neighbors across the street were here this past weekend, and although he never goes across the street as a rule, he had to go yesterday and just sniff those smells. I was calling him, and he heard me, but Bailey was getting slightly disturbed that Jake was ignoring me. He kept looking back at me from our property perimeter (which he would NEVER leave) and sort of making a "I don't know, what should we do?" kind of look. He continues to watch where Jake goes, which gives me a good idea how to find Jake. Eventually he comes in, and we all just go about our business, but Bailey is somewhat proud of himself as he feels he orchestrated the whole "get Jake back" activity, just by worrying. We spend alot of time looking for Jake. The older he gets the more he's inclined to wander. I feel his pain. I was in Schenectady yesterday costume shopping, and we had a few side trips. It's hard to go to a city I hardly know and just get in and get out. I have to do some side streets and see some new stuff. I am a wanderer too. We ate at Clinton's Ditch, which was a lovely pub type sports bar, and I wondered to myself, what would happen if you opened a lovely pub type women's place? If you showed the ballet on the TV screens, or soaps?(Heaven forbid). Would there be a clientele? Because there were enough women in there having business lunches (Schenectady is a bustling city) but I'm not sure the sports screens were a big draw. Not for me anyway. I had a good time, but was glad to get back to the theatre. We're cranking up the work on Alice, and it's getting closer. I hope we don't have a snowstorm. That would effect attendance.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A Rainy Day

Bailey is porch sitting this morning. He was all in a rush to get outside and when he saw the rain, he stopped short and parked it on the top step, out of the rain. I knew it was raining yesterday, when my shoulder kicked in. Ow. It's no fun being a walking barometer. I'm off to Halloween World in Ballston Spa today, finding makeup for the Alice cast. It should be fun. I'm going with my friend LisaBeth, and we are a good match. Two wacky girls from LI-she's from Brooklyn originally. Anyway, we're taking a road trip to get the Alice makeup and any additional props we can find. This is the fun part-the creative process. I am loving it. I wish my cold would go away, but I have found that Benadryl is an adequate solution. I can function and not feel so bad. As I always say-better living through pharmaceuticals. It's not a joke. The grass in the pasture is a beautiful emerald green. The rain is helping the seed we put down in the fall. It is coming up beautifully. Bocce anyone? We're getting closer to the show, and truth be told, I'll be glad when it goes on. I'm very tired. Rehearsal three nights a week and weekend activities at the theatre are taking their toll. I love it all, but I love resting too. It's a tough balance. It would be easier if there was a Board that was really "on board", but they are a tough sell. "Hard Work" is the only way this theatre will revive, and there are just a small few who are truly working hard. Ah well. We do what we can. Allison made her bus this morning, in record time. I've become quite friendly with the bus driver, from a distance. He and I have developed a hand signal language that we both understand. I can wave him on at 30 mph if Allison has a ride, or more likely, just isn't ready. He barely has to slow down. A little honk means he "gets it", and we both wave as in "have a nice day". It's rather pleasant, conversing with someone so early in the morning. I wonder if he feels the same. The days that Allie is taking the bus and walks across the route from the house to the bus, we just stay out of sight and pretend we don't know each other. We wouldn't want to embarass anyone. Ahhh kids. Just another day here in Caroga. . .

Monday, April 26, 2010

Poor Bailey

Bailey, our middle dog and my best friend, almost met his maker this morning. When I opened the door to let him outside after Allison's ride picked her up (I have to wait or he will follow down the road), I saw a flash of black across the porch, the size of a small squirrel. I believe it was a red squirrel, which is not red so much as it is darker, smaller and different from the gray Long Island squirrels I am used to. More like a ferret, but faster. So from the front of the porch to the back corner this black flash went, and right after it went Bailey. I stuck my head a little further out to see maybe what it was, and heard a loud screech and some bumping and scratching. Immediately after pulling my head back in, (and I was fast, believe me) Bailey was right there at the door, waiting to come back in. I opened the door and told him "quick!-come in!" Both of sat in the kitchen, cowering somewhat from this small but fast rodent. He won. We were scared and hiding. I don't like things that move fast simply because, well, I don't move so fast. So if it is something I have get away from, fast, I'm not going to win. So today, I concede. I ran a far second behind Bailey. The squirrel, I believe, is gone. I hope. I haven't been outside yet. We witnessed our first turkey in the pasture this morning. This makes Jerry terribly happy. I'm not sure WHY, but I am also afraid to ask. I want to name him, as he grazes in our field, but I fear that the most appropriate name might be "Dinner". As a meat lover myself, I cannot lay blame. I'm just not always happy to meet first those who appear at my table. More specifically, ON my table. There are days I lean more towards vegetarian. This may be one of them.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Just Another Day

Ahhhhh. spring. We have frost on the windshield this morning, and I still am wearing my down jacket in the mornings, but spring is finally here. By ten or so in the morning the sun is up and everything is steaming condensation into the chilly air. It is truly beautiful. We have not turned over the garden, although ten miles down the road in Palatine Bridge, the Amish have completely turned over their gardens and are already getting rows of SOMETHING. I feel like a complete under-achiever whenever I go there. Oh well. I'm still coming down from our fabulous Christmas Trip to New York City. Twelve of us attended La Cage Aux Folles at the Longacre Theatre, and I am happy to report that my assessment of the show was also the assessment of the critics. A Hit. It was sweet, emotional, on your feet fun! and we had a blast. I actually ate Outside the Box at Pio Pio, a highly recommended Peruvian restaurant on tenth avenue. Every year it gets harder and harder to coordinate this show experience with the family, and every year I am reminded why we do it. It was great to see everyone, to look down the table and see our five kids and their Significant Others and friends, and this year we were treated to my neice Emily and my sister Joanne and Grandma Doris. What a great group! Yes, we will do it again. It's worth it. We are in the middle of Alice in Wonderland rehearsals, and I have been swamped with activity. Elvis is coming May 1st (actually, three Elvis'-one for each decade of Elvis' popularity) and the anticipation is growing. We are also having a Relay for Life team with the theatre regulars, just because it is the right thing to do. I feel very strongly about giving my time to worthy causes, and so Friday June 5 is Relay for Life, and Sunday June 7 is Tour de Cure, where I will be riding for Diabetes with Jerry and our friend Melissa. That's right, a full weekend. Monday, June 8 you will probably find me passed out in the recliner, which is lately becoming my favorite spot. The plan was to be at the theatre as much as possible and help out THAT worthy cause. We are actually becoming successful at that endeavor, which means that the time needed at the theatre is tremendous. There is a balance somewhere that I have not found yet. I work on that continuously. Balance. But whatever is happening, the real thrill for me is riding up the 4.4 miles to our home, coming from wherever I am, and passing a deer, a few turkeys, quail and porcupines. All in one trip! It is an amazing place to live, and every day I count my blessings. Coming home to Jerry and Allison and being out on the back deck looking over the pasture and the garden. I have a T-Shirt that says "Life Is Good". Yes.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

"Le Cage Aux Folles"

Hello Readers.., Been a few days since I posted... Just sitting around the Camp / house today and waiting to get motivated to do something other then surf the net. Much work to be done and can't get it in Gear... We had a fabulous weekend down on Long Island and in Manhattan. We saw the Broadway Show, "Le Cage Aux Folles" with Family. The show was great and the company even better. All of our children attended with us along with Joanne , Doris , Julia & Emily. Some of the Family that was scheduled to come could not make it and very much missed. Mike Had to work, Ashly recovering from surgery, Jessie out of state attending a funeral of his Grandfather. Ashly get well soon, Jessie we are keeping you in our Thoughts & Prayers and Mike you missed a fabulous time....Work is work and sometimes it comes 1st.. After the show we had dinner at a restaurant called Pio...Pio in Manhattan . Jackie recommended the restaurant as she & Jessie had eaten at the Long Island Pio..Pio and loved it. It was a Hit and we all loved it! Thanks Jackie & Jessie! We Recommend that everyone Go See The Show....Le cage Aux Folles & Try Pio..Pio ! I'm Sure Jen will give a better review and I will leave that up to her. I'm not as descriptive as she , a writer , can be. I'll Leave it at Both the Restaurant , Pio...Pio & the Show are great! Nicole & Mike are coming along with our Grandson and last we heard the expected date is still 08/07/10 give or take a couple of weeks. I have been told that our grandson is kicking but did not get to feel him as he was quiet by the time we met up in Manhattan. Brian did get to feel some kicks on the train ride out. Baby Michale is due right in between Brian and my brothers birthdays. My Brother, Tom's, 08/01 & Brian's, 08/15. Jackie & Jessie doing well ( Other then the loss of his Grandfather) Jackie advises that her business is just keeping her sooooo busy. Walter seems to be having the times of his life working on a tug boat , NY Harbor. Brian working hard on two ambulances and waiting to get hired on the police dept, NYC or out in Suffolk county. Allison doing well in high school here and having fun exploring photography & taking some fabulous photo's Spring has arrived here in Caroga and slowly the grass and trees are blooming, seems that we are about 2 weeks behind the bloom on Long Island. I'm down to one live bee hive as I lost 4-5 to winter. I expect that I will get more hives going over the summer thru swarms or purchasing more bee's from the local bee vendor. Soon we will be working on our living room , replacing the west side windows and interior walls to have rough cut 10 inch lumber on the walls giving the room a very much so cabin feel. For those who have been up the living room will have the same look as our master bedroom walls. In the next couple days the craftsman who made and installed the rear deck railing will be coming by the house to give us a price on installing the front porch railing to make the porch near finished. The "Lake House" has not had any work at all other then yard cleaned up. We expect to get going on that this year...,We expect! Jake,Bailey & Daphne Just loving this warmer weather. The dogs spent the weekend at a local dog kennel and returned to us as happy as clams after the stay, getting a couple booster shots from a vet that visited the kennel. I for the past 3 months or so have returned to work for a security company , this office based in Fla with offices world wide. So far I have only attended classes with this company and waiting for Federal Security Checks before I can do any work for them. Not sure as of yet what or where I'll be working other then it's going to be Between here , Albany & Buffalo . I'm sporting a clean shaved face & very short hair, longer then most co -workers. Most of my co-workers are retired PD from the area . I think our official job title is, Federal Security Officers . Jen......., My Bride, has been working at her passion , The Arts ,volunteering at the Glove Theatre doing administrative work and is now also directing "Alice In Wonderland" ( She also Cleans & sweeps right alongside of the crew). They are lucky to have her! I too have been volunteering mostly every night at the Glove, sound board, carpentry ,scenery ,painting, lighting and oh yes.....Cleaning along side of Jen. Seems that the Glove is having a fund raising auction and Jen thought that it would be a good idea if we offered up for the auction a...."Jerry's Long Island Lasagna ". Start the biding....It will Feed 10-12 people...We ship! GOOD KARMA !!!!! It's will follow you. BAD KARMA Will Also Follow , Sometimes Later.......Sometimes Sooner! "Having the Times Of Our Lives" Well that's about it for today ,Gang.....Jerry

Friday, April 16, 2010

Broadway Bound

We're off to the big city-to see a Broadway Show! This is the family Christmas Party, which takes place in April this year because this is a tough group to pin down. We also collectively decided that strolling through Manhattan can be much nicer in April than January, which is when we have gone in the past. We are taking in "Le Cage Aux Folles" at the Longacrew Theatre, and have quite a group going. We are missing some crucial people, and will miss them all. This is the danger of booking a large group-inevitably people have life happening in spite of our tickets. That is what makes it such a wonderful time. Because we are all together and realize the frailty and the beauty of life, and that we must grab whatever moments we have, because we don't know when we'll have them again. So sometimes, when things get in the way of a plan, it helps to go forward with the plan anyway. It's the best we can do. We miss you Jesse and Ashley - Know that you're both in our thoughts. I have uploaded a picture here of the "Four Corners Dog". His house is located at the bottom of North Bush Road, which is 4.4 miles from our house. He watches this corner day and night, and considers it his own. You may come upon him sometimes and find him dozing on the yellow line, and everyone cautiously drives around him. I've mistakenly thought he had taken a hit a number of times, only to be pleasantly surprised when he looks up and decides to move on. It's definitely his corner, and we are on his turf. He is out there, winter, spring, summer, fall. I've seen him on occasion sleeping in his yard, or on his porch, but he definitely prefers the road; I guess he won't miss anything that way. We get totally freaked out when our dogs go NEAR the road, and this dog is roaming in Meco in all directions. No one is hanging out the front door and yelling, "Get Over here!" Hmmmm. It's like with the kids-I can remember seeing kids in the neighborhood running around without coats or shoes and thinking "Where IS that Mother?" And those were the kids who never got sick or had accidents. I guess God DOES watch over fools and children. This dog is a fool. So, when we get to the Bottom of North Bush Road, we'll head right, towards Long Island - and I can't wait! And this yellow lab had better get out of the way! It can be nice to put off Christmas a little bit-some April fun when we least expect it!

Thursday, April 15, 2010


We started bicycle training on the rail trail on Easter Sunday. Jerry, Allison, our friend Melissa and myself began at the Gloversville Transit Station parking lot, and headed southh towards Johnstown. This trail is the former GJ&F Railroad path, and has been paved over for use by recreation buffs strictly for their non-motorized enjoyment. No ATVs, no vehicles at all. Just paved bike and hiking paths following the old route of the GJ&F. The route from Gloversville is approximately 3-4 miles, and is fairly level. As we are registered for the 25 mile Tour de Cure on June 6, training has become a priority. Twenty-five miles is not something you can just arrive for-it requires a bit of pre-planning. I did some training last year for the ten mile route, and I finished with flying colors, albeit tired and overdone. Whatever made me think that 25 miles was the way to go is now escaping me. Was ten not enough? I had to up the bar on MYSELF? WTF? Anyway, I've committed, so I will train. I have no guarantee that the Saratoga Sprints route is as level or that even I will get to see the whole thing, because so far, I'm not doing well. The 3-4 mile trip that we took on Easter Sunday was a slight incline on the return trip. When I say slight incline, I mean that if you laid an egg down on the path, it may or may not roll in that direction - that is how slight it was. But for me, it was as if I was climbing Mt. Everest. HUGE! At about the midway point (maybe a little more or less-I can't say) I realize that I felt like I was going to keel over and decided to bail. Midway there is a lovely little Gazebo and park where you can stop in your travels. I stopped. And didn't travel any more. My trusty mate Jerry finished the route with the other two girls (Allison on a bike with NO GEARS no less-that's HER choice by the way). They all got back to the Gloversville starting point, loaded up their bikes and came to get me, vegging at the park. What was foremost on my mind at that point was Saratoga Springs/25 Miles/ARE WE KIDDING? Anyway, it was a lovely ride, and the first day of training. Always the hardest I guess. I hope. It's good to lower the bar sometimes. Then you can crawl out of it.

Monday, April 12, 2010


Friends of mine who work with me at the Theatre went to Florida and brought me back a letter opener as a souvenir. It was (and is) very much appreciated as I had been using my swiss army knife to open the mail, which we had all observed was probably pretty dangerous. Of course, the new letter opener was packaged in plastic with a cardboard backing piece, and it needed to be opened. So, naturally, I used my swiss army knife to open the plastic and cardboard. Of course, I managed to slice my finger open with the knife, which was the purpose of the new letter opener - a safety issue. Since I take a few blood thinners, my desk at the theatre began to look like the OJ Crime Scene. My friend Richard went downstairs to see if we did in fact have a first aid kit. Thankfully, we do. I should have checked that before, because the good news is that I believe I am the first bleeder that we've had at the theatre since I'm on board. I will make sure that this kit is up to date and filled with supplies, now that I know it exists. All that taken care of, thank you Joanne and Richard for the lovely letter opener. I do appreciate your thoughtfulness, and will put the pen knife away immediately. I just have to figure out how to close it. . .

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Snow? WTF?

That's right friends, snow here in Caroga. We woke up this morning to a dusting. A dusting that has to be cleaned off the windshields. With a tool. Not hands. No blowing. A tool. Enough snow that we have to clean it off - which means we MUST go into Caroga for a pancake breakfast with home fries. This is a cold one. The pellet stove is up and running, and Daphne is roasting by the fire with me. Our toes are warm and we are ready to bring out the uggs yet again. Aaaaahhhhh. April in the Adirondacks. We have had variations of 60 degrees this week. 90 on thursday, 50 on Friday and this morning, 30 something. This is cool. What is it where YOU are? Now that spring cleaning has been done, and undone today, I realize that we are living in a cold zone and I love it. I am wearing layers today, as the temps are supposed to be changing again in a wild way. Maybe up to 50 something this afternoon. Adirondack Spring. The best part-Sinatra tonight at the theatre. I have to wear a dressy outfit with some kind of sequin moment, and uggs. My feet are cold again-Welcome to Caroga lake. Bring your socks. The warm ones.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Happy Easter

My cousin has shared with me some of her wisest lessons, compliments of the Easter Bunny-Thanks Carrie-Happy Easter to all. Everything I need to know I learned from the Easter Bunny: Don't put all your eggs in one basket. Everyone needs a friend who is all ears. There's no such thing as too much candy. All work and no play can make you a basket case. A cute tail attracts a lot of attention. Everyone is entitled to a bad hare day. Let happy thoughts multiply like rabbits. Some body parts should be floppy. Keep your paws off of other people's jelly beans. Good things come in small, sugar coated packages. The grass is always greener in someone else's basket. To show your true colors, you have to come out of the shell. The best things in life are still sweet and gooey. Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Milkman Cometh

It's Thursday, and that means the milkman is on his way. Actually she's a milk-maid. We have to count the days we'll need milk, try and calculate any special recipes or holiday needs (such as eggs, sour cream, Easter, Christmas, etc.) and leave the list by the milkbox. When we get home today, the milk will be inside, Iced down with the bill tucked inside. I love this. It makes me feel so catered to. I don't have to lug milk from the store to the car to the frig. It is all a single weekly endeavor, and the milk is delicious. Living down the road from the local dairy farm means we get the milk in glass 1/2 gallon containers. To say its fresh is an understatement. So, a weeks worth of milk purchased in one day-no quick trips down a four mile country road because we're out of milk. Moving to the boondocks has been an adjustment for us, who had a deli in our residential neighborhood in Glen Cove. We used to treat it like our personal pantry. I can't count the number of times we'd sit down to a meal and have to send a small child (usually Allison) down to the deli for milk/butter/etc. She loved the run down the street, we'd stand in the yard and watch her go back and forth (unbeknownst to her) and we were able to continue on with our meal. Now, the nearest "pantry" is up in Caroga at the Red Store, which may or may not have what we're looking for. Stewart's is in the other direction - five miles. not a quick trip. At best 25 minutes (ten down, ten back, five in the store). Not the kind of afterthought we used to operate under. At least with the Milk, we have a plan and its working. We are set for the week with milk. The rest of it needs a full blown grocery trip. So, anything to simplify that chore I'll take with a smile. I love Thursdays. Got Milk?