I took a brief trip recently. It was too late to call it a “Winter vacation” so we’ll call it “Spring Break.” And you know I love my annual Winter (this year, Spring) vacation. I have to be around the water…

(As always, click on the images to expand. They are beautiful! And you see so much detail.)



There were bright, beautiful, tropical fish…Even the green thing below is a fish (or something—please don’t correct me—I don’t care. I’m an art historian, not a biologist).



Now there were a few things missing, namely the outdoors, the beach and the sun. But there were plenty of chairs, which are usually in short supply near the water:


Yeah, good times. Good times…

When, after a walk, your dog steps and gets all 4 paws into a 14″ diameter (circumference? radius? I flunked geometry) bird bath filled with skanky muddy water and tries to lay/lie in it…

6/1 Note to self: Next time, actually PUT the pool out. Today, she got all the way into the skanky water and SAT DOWN in it. Nice…

So I dump the water, move birdbath out of the way, and go get the *&^* pool.

I come back, pool in hand, and the stooopid dog is laying/lying down in the cool wet mud where the birdbath was just a moment ago…

Put the minimum required amount of water in the pool, but now the only ones interested in it are the cats, who need a drink of water. I should’ve just had kids.

This is going to be a short one (HA!). After much hemming and hawing—no, seriously, I spent a lot of time on it and I know you’re shocked—I finally booked my usually-annual winter vacation.

It’ll be my first time at an all-inclusive, something I’ve tried to avoid because you’re so isolated, they tend to waste energy, crappy pay to workers, I don’t want to eat American food in a foreign country (steak excepted), etc.

::steps off soapbox::

But the choices were overwhelming, and let’s face it: What am I gonna do the whole time? Lay/lie my pale butt on a chair by the waves, “over apply sunblock yet still burn in funky places,” drink native cocktails and eat seafood. It’s not like I want to go on “excursions.”

Sleep, eat, read. That’s it. Think Elizabeth Gilbert, but without deliberate attempts to pray and no love, except for loving thoughts. (I’ve already got my groove back.)

I don’t want the worries of where to eat, how to get there, blah blah blah 3+ times a day. Not to mention finding a good beach to go to that’s near food, safe, and has a bathroom at my disposal.

So that’s my rationalization for the “AI.” I already sold my soul to the devil when I started working outside the 501(c)3 sector, so why not add an all-inclusive trip to Mexico in there too?!

I can’t wait.

(Beach is wayyyy back there.)

pigs_flying.jpgThe link below summarizes my friend K’s and my history quite well but I need to suck you in first so you go check it yourself, right?

We’ve known each other since we were 13’ish. I met her at M’s house and they were listening to Peter Frampton’ live album in Pat’s room (his walls were painted black—if only I’d figured out then what I found out later—well, ’nuff said).

If you’ve never heard of Frampton don’t tell me, but here’s something I wrote about him a few months ago: Dinosaurs in the midst

I remember writing in my diary about being unhappy (read: jealous) that M. had “some girl” in over and they were listening to the album M. had promised we would listen to together. Oh the nerve!

Over time we’ve remained friends through thick and thin. It’s the type of friendship we can just pick up where we last left off, whether it was 5 minutes ago or 5 months ago. How many people can you do that with?

We were born a week apart, and she’s an extended member of my family. She and my mom were pregnant at the same time. K. got married soon after that and frankly, that marriage was doomed from the start. ‘Nuff said…

When she got out of that marriage she didn’t even have to say it, but we both knew she was never gonna get married again. Knowing what she’d been through I couldn’t blame her.

She moved to Santa Fe a few years ago, but we’ve stayed in touch, but since we sometimes go months without talking, I was stunned when she called to tell me she was getting married.

I was so happy for her. For her to even want to get married said it all! I tried like hell to get out there, but with my budget I couldn’t get any further than Atlanta, and that was the wrong direction.

Not only was Atlanta the wrong direction but she was so inflexible about moving her wedding to Altanta that I had to send a proxy instead.

You know that expression about something happening ‘when pigs fly’? Well, if this wedding wasn’t proof that pigs could fly I don’t know what is.

Hence the gift, and hence the special page just for me and the special video just for me. Being all hormonal <connected story here: That darn cat*> I could just cry again to think about it, but don’t worry, you’ll smile when you check it out.

Here’s the link. Since the page is all about me and I crave attention right now please take a look at it. It’s also entertaining and is a special tribute from a special friend.

Happy life to Karen and Tom!

You might have to cut and paste this into your browser: http://home.earthlink.net/~tomandkarenwaters/id10.html

Cliché alert—So much to write, so little time (except in my head, which is constantly in draft mode).

—I’m trying  http://jott.com/how-to/jott-to-self You call a phone #, leave a message to yourself (about whatever), and then it magically emails you your message in text (or as a text). It’ll be like having my own transcriptionist! I can’t wait to use it. Invariably my best thoughts come in the shower or while on walks, so at least I can walk and have a hope in hell of remembering it later…You can do 30 seconds at a time

 —Favorite things from tonight’s episode of The Office :

-Phyllis pressing so many buttons on the microwave while The (heretofore unknown) Finer Things Group (Club?) was trying to conduct an intellectual conversation about an E. M. Forster book.

-Dwight saying “The eyes are the groin of the head.” <Just sit with that one for a few minutes.>

-Target had Xmas labels on all its signage (“Great Gift!” “Tis the Season” etc.), and the Halloween loot (a lot of it too!) was set up right next to the Christmas stuff. I actually started seeing Xmas stuff there about 1 1/2 mos. ago, and it’s not as bad as it WILL get, but I’d say it’s definitely mid-way full-on christmas. They might as well keep it out all year ’round. Bah humbug I guess.

-Fall colors getting good, despite the dire predictions. I go into people’s offices at work and look out the windows and see a lot of color in the trees (I blur out the parking lot and highway). But after nothing to view but concrete at The Mother Ship, all the trees visible from The Everywhere Place are SO refreshing and calming.

-Oh GOD, did you just hear me groan?! “They” are predicting a freeze tonigh. I’m counting on meteorology’s overly-optimistic-but-notoriously -flawed predictions to be wrong, but it just reinforces (i.e.-I can’t deny) that “it”* is coming, whether I like it or not. I know the fall/winter is a time for letting go, a time of reflection, celebratory groupings, blah blah blah, but I STILL HATE IT. Tie me down so I do not run away. I feel like a trapped tiger pacing back and forth except that I’m too tired to actually pace.

I know—whiny whiney woo. Must plan winter trip soon. Think it’ll be Puerto Rico this year, at (gasp) Xmas time. The Everywhere Place closes at xmas for approx. 10 days, and I have vacation to use by the end of the year, and I NEED a vacation since this year’s vacation was (with pleasure) spent with my friend after her cancer surgery.

I am more than ready to go. If you’ve been to PR, I’m looking for small inn on the beach in a non-touristy, safe area. Air conditioning isn’t necessary. I must have lounge chairs on the beach, be near restaurants, and preferably also a small grocery but not in mega-tourist area. Be great if there were a bar and good restaurant on premises too. Needs to be walkable or cab-able. And if it could be where I meet the man of my dreams, I’m okay with that. I’m not asking for too much am I?

*Winter of course

It’s October 5th, I have the air conditioning on and there are buds on my tomatoes.

I’m sorry, but if this is global warming’s impact on my life (without me packing up and moving to get this), I am OK with it.

That is SO un-politically correct and selfish and I recycled before recycling was cool and blah blah blah I know it’s wrong to even THINK this.

But I’m like a fish without water, so being barefoot in shorts plucking basil on a hot October day is as close to perfect as I could hope for right now. I’ll just need to take a shower instead of a plunge into the ocean…

*currently called ‘climate change’ but formerly called ‘acid rain,’ ‘eating away at the ozone’ (or it eating us or something)…My term of choice is still ‘global warming.