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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Blog Problems

I know I haven't written much lately. I still have more to talk about my trip to Seattle, but right now I'm sulking.

For some reason I can't upload any of my pictures even though I'm doing everything the same as always. I wanted to include some from the Tulip Festival. There aren't too many since Spring has been slow in coming to Seattle. I did see some daffodils. They were beautiful when seen from a distance, just like a carpet of yellow. I can just imagine how beautiful the tulips would have been, seas of red, white and yellow. I've seen pictures from previous years and I'm sorry I missed them.

If you would like to see pictures from this year's festival, go to my son's blog at http://cromely.blogspot.com. (I haven't quite gotten the hang of linking no matter how much I try.) His pictures are wonderful.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sushi

On my first day in Seattle, my son took me for Sushi. This was only the third time I've had it. At first, I ate to say I tried it, it was OK. My second venture into Sushi was better, but the third time was the charm.

The restaurant we went to served the Sushi on a conveyor belt. Since I really don't know that much about Sushi, I let Bill make the selections. He did a very good job, we had shrimp, eels, tuna and others that I don't remember. I've been converted, although I don't know if I could eat Sushi in any of the local restaurants, it would have to be a "true" Japanese restaurant.

I even tried a Japanese beer - Asahi. It was very good. I surprised myself by enjoying it. Until about the last five or six years, I wouldn't even try beer, I just couldn't stand the taste until I went to a beer tasting in Seattl. Now, I do enjoy a glass now and then.

I can't believe how adventurous I've become these last 15 or 20 years. I really enjoy trying new foods.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Leavenworth, A Town Returns to Life

Last week my son and I visited the town of Leavenworth, WA. This was originally a logging town with a sawmill. They thrived until about the middle of the 20th century when the Great Northern Railway Company pulled out of town. In the 60's the leaders of the town took their last chance to turn the town around.

They took advantage of the surrounding mountains and Alpine atmosphere and modeled the town after a Bavarian village to encourage tourism. They planned festivals throughout the year and remodeled all the buildings to resemble Bavaria.



They did a pretty good job, the buildings looked very similar to some I saw during my visit in Alsace Lorraine a few years ago.

Naturally, as in all tourist towns, there was SHOPPING! I was very good though. We visited a shop that specialized in Nutcrackers. I've been collecting them for a few years now, but I've never seen such an assortment. There was a whole wall of them. I was in heaven, until I saw the prices. They were very expensive, much too rich for me. They must have been either imported or hand carved.

They also had some Hummels which I used to collect, but stopped when I bought my favorite, "Blessed Event".

On the way back, we stopped in a 50's style diner. They had all kinds of old pictures and a TV that was showing "The Cisco Kid". That really brought back some memories.

It was a wonderful day. The scenery along the way was magnificant. There was a lot of snow along the road in some places. Later in the week they had more snow and they did some avalanche control.

I just wish they'd change the name. All I could think of was Ft. Leavenworth in Kansas and a federal prison.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Education

They say that travel can be educational. After this past week I totally agree with that. I learned a couple of things on my recent trip to Seattle.

I learned that I am completely out of shape. I used to be a great walker, but since I've retired and live in the country/suburbs the most walking I do is to my car. There was a time when I could walk 4 miles without tiring. Now, I'm lucky if I can do a block without huffing and puffing. I couldn't possibly be getting old, could I?

In order to maintain my current of denial, I'm going to start walking again. About a mile a day should be a good start. Now, I just have to fit it into my schedule.

Another thing I learned in Seattle is that over the past two years, they have added several more hills. I mentioned this to a friend who visits Seattle every year. She completely agreed with me, and she stays in a more flat section. I really don't know why they keep adding those hills, maybe they want to discourage out of shape tourists.

Crash is getting a little chunky, maybe she and I should do a few laps in the house. Can't hurt.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Travels

I spent this past week visiting my son in Seattle, but more about that at a later date. It was a wonderful trip.

Waiting on the security line in the SeaTac Airport, I met a couple of people. There were two women who asked to go ahead since they were short on time to meet their connection flight. I don't remember if they were going to Beijing or returning from Beijing. They started talking to the woman behind me who was going to Rome. Such wonderful trips, such special places.

They asked me where I was going and I hated to admit it, but I was honest and told them, "Newark". Does it sound any more boring or ordinary than that?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Travel

I'm planning a short (5 day) trip to visit my son. I had planned on taking only enough for my carry-on bag. Once I started packing, I realized one bag would not be enough.

First, there's the restriction on liquids. You can only carry 3 oz. bottles and only enough bottles to fit into a quart sized Ziploc bag. I don't know about you, but for me, it takes a lot of lotions, shampoos, conditioners, soaps to maintain that youthful, natural look. Add to that, we've had a long, hard, cold winter that required the heater running all the time and drying the air. I need lots of special creams and lotions, then I need the special shampoo for color treated hair, the moisturizing body soap and special moisturizing face soap. Of course, I have to bring along my nail polish in case I get a chip in my manicure. That doesn't include the make-up. Fortunately, hotels now provide a hair dryer, but I still have to bring my curling iron and shower cap so I don't have to wash and dry my hair every day.

Then, as I packed, I realized I'd be bringing my computer, cell phone, camera, I-pod and Kindle. They all need their own chargers.

April is a very funny month. You never know what the weather will be like. It's cool now, I need a coat; next week it may be warmer. I need both long and short sleeve tops. Should I prepare for rain or take my chances on sunshine? I have to take an umbrella and sunglasses. Then, there's the problem of shoes. I need shoes for walking and also something nice. I need shoes that can be easily slipped on and off for security.

It's time to move to the next size in luggage which is just slightly larger than the standard for carry-on. All my electronics will be in my carry-on and my shoes and cosmetics (my lab as I like to call them) will be checked. There may be a little room for some clothes to wear.

I could make it easier on myself if I were willing to live for a week with tight, dry skin that flakes and didn't need to take some "just in case" clothes or if I were willing to live without my computer, cell phone or a good book to read on my Kindle. Unfortunately, I'm spoiled.

It isn't easy being a spoiled, "girl". Now I know why I prefer to drive to vacation destinations. There is no restriction on the amount of "necessities" I can bring with me.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Reputation

Today I discovered that I have a reputation in my community. I don't know what I did to earn this reputation, but I've got it. It's similar to one I had when I worked, but there I know what I did.

I got a call this afternoon from one of my neighbors. She was having trouble with her computer and her husband suggested she call me. This was not the first time someone has come to me with a computer problem.

I didn't know what to tell her. I really don't know that much about fixing computers. She was having trouble connecting with aol. I tried my connection, but that was OK. She said once before she had this problem and unplugged her computer and reconnected it, correcting the problem. Because of my experience two weeks ago, I couldn't tell her to do it again. Since my son, in Seattle, takes care of any problem I have, I gave her the name of a neighbor who had someone come to her home for her computer.

When I worked, all I had to do when someone had a computer problem was touch the equipment. They said I had healing hands.

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Race is On

Today it became official. Barack Obama is going to run for reelection in 2012. He plans on raising $1 billion for his campaign fund. He'll probably do it too.

I wasn't too surprised by the news. As soon as he condescended to sign the extension of the Bush Tax Cuts, I knew he was making a show of moving to the center. Today, right after the announcement, he made another campaign promise to persuade the independent voters that he really is a centrist. He had the attorney general say that he will have military trials for the terrorists at GITMO. Look for more signs that he is moving toward the center.

After he convinces the voters that he is not the left leaning, socialist we have seen these past two and a half years he will be reelected. The day after he is confirmed as the winner, he will again show his true colors and cancel everything he has done to be reelected. He will do everything in his power to "buy" his reelection.

I hate to be such a pessimist, but I just don't trust the man.