Monday, July 30, 2007

Air Conditioner Healed

A local Pentecostal preacher came by and healed my air conditioner this afternoon.

This deserves a back story doesn't it?

I went to Peggy's after Gene died and stayed about a week. When I got back home, I went to turn on the air conditioner and it threw the circuit breaker. Even after unplugging the a/c and flipping the breaker many many many times, nothing would work on that circuit, not even a lamp or a fan. (Yes, I checked to make sure said fan and lamp worked on another working circuit thank you very much.) I was not surprised because having to replace appliances after a hurricane is not uncommon with all those power surges when power is going out and back on. As a matter of fact, the refrigerator was on it's last leg at the time and the storm finished it off. Had to replace it. Even had to get a new VCR/DVD player, etc. but I digress.

So anyway, I wasn't in a mood to deal with anyone coming into my house to look at this electrical/air conditioner problem so I left the a/c unplugged and turned off the non-working breaker.

Fast forward a year and nine months. I recently decided to get some estimates on repairs to the floor and such. The guy who came this afternoon took a look at the floor and said he'd probably have an estimate for me on Thursday. Before he left, I asked if he did electrical, too, and he said he did.

So he took a look at the circuit that the air conditioner was on and had it working in short order. The a/c works now. Hasn't cooled things off but two degrees according to the thermometer, but sure can tell it has removed lots of humidity. Will see how it ends up. Hasn't been on too long yet.

In addition to doing house repairs and owning rental properties, he is also a local minister. Get it? Laid on hands and healed the air conditioner? I know, dumb joke.

He never got back in touch with me about the repairs. I guess he just really didn't want this job. Plus he really pitched a couple of houses in town he'd fixed up and wanted to sell. I certainly wasn't interested. If I buy a new house anytime soon it won't be in this town, but in the town 30 miles away where I work.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Me and E

Einstein is being the cozy kitty and is curled up on my arm making it very hard to type. But I don't care. I love it when he cuddles. He's great company. We hadn't had him long when Gene died. Animals loved Gene and E didn't have much to do with me then. I was totally secondary in his world. But I am what he ended up with and his kitten antics distracted me and I ended up being his person. And the little kitten turned out to be a nice big burly fifteen pound kitty. And he has beautiful, beautiful blue eyes. I should post a recent photo of him.

Okay, he's done with that cuddling stuff. Did I post that Eienstein caught and brought in lizards, bugs and even a squirrel one day? He just ran in with something and of course I panic remembering the squirrel. It was just a butterfly this time. He let it go and is chasing it around the house. Soooo much better than squirrels and snakes.

I'm taking a few days off work. Just getting in my vacation time before it expires. It's been threatening to rain. There were some beautiful days earlier this week, and of course it clouded up for my days off. No problem, though. I think it bothers me much less than other people. That humidity is one of the ways we East Texas women keep our dewey complexions, don't you know?

Wednesday after work, Lila and I went to see the new Harry Potter movie. It was fun. I knew I'd never get around to reading the last book in the series that just came out, and her boyfriend had told her the ending so I got to her to tell me what happened. So let me tell you who dies - Kidding! I wouldn't do that just in case someone happens to visit my blog that doesn't want to know.

What else is there to tell? Kind of went through a spell of the blues lately, but on the upswing I think.

Will get to see Gene's family this weekend. I'm excited about that. I love that I still get to spend time with them. They are truly my family now.

JoanE called me yesterday and we talked for a long, long time and got caught up. Man, we had some adventures back in the day! Hey JoanE, remember that time we were driving around lost in the Hill Country and were passing the time playing "sing a song by this person" game? I said Lena Horne and you sang, " A cup, a cup, a cup, a cup" and I just about lost it. Almost had to pull over to the side of the road. Talk about slap happy! If you want to see this classic Lena Horne performance, here's the LINK.

The other day, I was looking in my emails for a username-password for some account and came across the one for an email acount Gene had set up for me, I think one associated with his website. I never needed it nor used it but decided to log into it just for the heck of it. There was one email in it that he'd sent as a test. It said only, "test one" and that was it. Couldn't resist. I replied back with "I miss you." Sentimental fool, huh?

Let's see. What else? I am attempting to watch my latest Netflix movie "The Number 23" or as I like to call it, "5." Get it? 2 plus 3 is 5? Well, if you've seen the movie you do .... I know, dumb but it about all of a rating I want to give to this movie. And I had high hopes for it. Like Memento or something. Maybe it's just the Jim Carey thing. He's highly overrated in my book.

Okay, E is back up here wanting some attention and no one can say I haven't posted in a while so that's it for now!

Thursday, July 19, 2007


It's almost been exactly a month since I posted. Sorry about that. Was in a funk for a while and then got really busy. But last week, I went to a conference for work in Boston along with a co-worker. So I've got lots to blog about. This one will be image heavy so my apologies to those of you on dial-up. (I think I got the photo problem fixed for your first lookers.)

Boston - Tues, July 10

Left the house about 8 a.m. and headed to airport. Met up with Christine at the gate. The night before I had trouble going to sleep and was operating on about an hour and a half of shut eye. The flight was about four hours but the excitement of the trip held. I had the window seat going to Boston and I’m surprised I didn’t have a crick in my neck from looking the whole time.

There were two ladies that had those little personal fans. The blades seem to disappear when the lady next to us used hers, so all we were seeing was this vibrating thing that she was proudly holding. Okay, that was the first time we got the giggles during the trip.


Here's a silly picture of me and the explanation of the M&M cup will come later. Oh yeah, and some cool looking clouds.

The landing at Logan Airport was quite exciting! Very quick stop! And a quick, and I mean QUICK left turn immediately. We speculated that the pilot might have overshot an already short runway in the fog. Weather or daredevil, either way it was kind of exciting.

We had gone to baggage claim and gotten our luggage, gotten a taxi, and were checked in and in our rooms in about thirty minutes. Amazing!

There was a reception that evening that we went to right there in the conference hotel and got to finally meet our account manager in person. We were going to try to go find Cheers after the reception but another account manager had clients who hadn’t shown. So right place, right time – we got to take their spots at dinner. Very nice place. Christine was just telling someone today that, “this place was so nice, Judy didn’t even take out her camera and take pictures of her food.” Could be the nicest place I’ve ever had the opportunity to enjoy. It was Grill 23 and here is the website. LINK.

If I had taken pictures, they would have looked something like these from their website:

We Were Seated Upstairs

Looks a Lot Like My Meal

Just Like My Side Dish

After that, we walked quite a few blocks and made our way to Cheers. This is the place that the sitcom was based on so the outside looks like it but the inside is just this small little place with all sorts of Cheers memorabilia and photos and things to spend money on. Our account manager stuck around with us for a little while. The rest went back to the hotel after a requisite photo op. “Too touristy.” they said. “So what!” I say. We had fun.

L to R. Maggie, Mark, Andrew, Rick, Tim, and Juan.
Various Account Managers who were our hosts for dinner.

Boston - Wed, July 11

The conference started the next morning. I’d tell you about the conference but that work stuff would take a while to explain and would probably be boring to you. Basically, it was about data management in higher education. Suffice it to say that it was a good conference and we learned a lot. Oh yeah, we were staying at the conference hotel so it made it really easy. It was the Park Plaza which is an historic hotel. LINK.

Park Plaza Lobby.

Lobby From Above.

Main Meeting Room.

My Room.

Christine's View.

My View.

The Windows Open!

My View Looking Down.

So back to food and fun. The conference always had a nice continental breakfast and nice lunches. And there was that fabulous dinner that we lucked into on Tuesday night at Grill 23, too.

On Wednesday after the conference, we had a free evening. Christine and I decided to go walk around and look at the sights and find a place to eat.

Here's a swan we saw building a nest
as we passed through the park.

We ended up at the Charles River Esplanade very near where we were staying in downtown Boston. There was a free concert that night at the Shell. LINK. We got some great food from the Café Esplanade which was actually the food stand at the park.

They played Haydn's Symphony No. 104 in D major during the first half of the performance. That was our “music to dine by.” After we ate, we went up to the very front and sat and enjoyed Beethoven’s Ninth, Opus 125; the first symphony he composed to include voices so I heard from MichelleS upon my I return. It was beautiful. Let’s just say I was moved to tears. OMG, it was just so wonderful and so serendipidous to have just walked up on it.

Park Closed Dusk to Dawn. Concert at 7PM.
Why do I find this so funny?

A Great Meal.

See? Chicken Salad Wraps, Summer Sausage, etc.

The Soloist.

Shell Crowd.

Enjoying Life.

Boston - Thurs, July 12

Thursday was more conferencing. Then after all of that was the awards dinner. No, didn’t win any awards even though we took a fake picture afterwards as if I was receiving one just for grins.

But this place where the dinner was held was fabulous. It was in the State Room on the 33rd floor of the State Street building and has an almost full view of Boston. LINK.

Trolley ride to State Street Building. Cool wedge shaped building in background.

State Street Building.

The 33rd Floor.

Nice view, wouldn't you agree?


Cape Cod.

Salmon, Asparagus, Shrimp.

Spinach, Aspargus, and Yellow Beets.

Dessert. Yum!

"The most account managers at one table."

Your's Truly.

After this event was over, we went back to the hotel and went out again with one of our new friends. She is from a university in Tennessee. We had a great time!

Boston - Fri, July 13

The next day, we were through with the conference but had time to go do some things before our flight home. We took a taxi to Harvard Square. Christine had always wanted to go to campus of Harvard and I wanted to see the headquarters of one of my favorite radio programs, Car Talk, LINK. LINK. And right there on the window is painted Dewey, Cheetham, and Howe just like they always say. Right beneath it was a Curious George store which Christine was interested in since she has little girls, so we did spend some time in there. And we picked up a few more souvenirs along the way, too.

Dewey, Cheetham, & Howe.

We were appreciating each other as travel companions in that we both wanted to go do and see things and if something looked more interesting in a different direction, we were both game to go check it out. And the fact that we were probably the two out of our entire office that would enjoy the symphony and museums as much as we did, it made the work trip that much nicer. Which brings me to – we were starting to talk about grabbing some lunch or heading to the next destination and I realized I hadn’t had any clam chowder. But we remedied that right away and got some.


Harvard Square. Little Guy Poses On My Camera.

Then we jumped on the subway and found our way to the Museum of Fine Arts, LINK. We went to the see the Edward Hopper exhibit which was great.

You may recognize him for this.


But I liked this a lot.

Room In New York.

And I was studying this watercolor up close and so intently and I just went there. Right to that beach that was in that painting. I heard the waves pounding behind me. It was such an odd sensation. Even though it lasted only a split second, it was so real that it was almost creepy.

Cottages at Wellfleet.

Then we still had time to look at their other collections. As we left the gift shop (more souvenirs), the first room we went into was primarily European paintings and a couple of sculptures. So many famous paintings that we got to inspect close up. Plus, Degas’s Dancer was the first thing we saw when we walked in. I never ever expected that I would see that in person. It was quite wonderful. And the paintings. Again, I was moved to tears.

Degas's Little Dancer.

I told Christine that my new motto from this trip is “There are four things that make me cry. Moving music, incredible art, falling down, and laughing so hard your sides hurt.” I’d told Christine that I’d noticed how sure footed she was. She kind of gave me a “Huh?” But I explained to her that I am rather clumsy. She said she’d never noticed that, and I informed her that was because I work at it! And wouldn’t you know it, the very next day I had a nice rolling fall. Yeah, I got a bruised knee but it was all quite comical!

So anyway, after the museum we found our way back to the hotel, grabbed our bags we’d stashed with the bellman, made it to the airport in plenty of time. We couldn’t believe how many places we'd packed into that short a time and we really didn’t get started until around 9:30 that morning and still made it to the airport in plenty of time to get passed through security and get hamburgers and a strawberry shake at Johnny Rocket's there.

Johnny Rocket's at Logan Airport.

Another Burger!

On the flight to Boston, I’d double stacked my cups from the diet cokes I’d gotten, but also had an M&M bag which I sandwiched in between them (see image above). So I did it again on the way back. Christine took this photo of “the quiet guy” sitting by us. She kept moving my hand around to get it at just the right angle, and I cracked up when I saw this photo.

I got home around 10:30 Friday night. Einstein was very, very happy to see me. I didn’t do much all weekend but sleep and watch it rain.

There was so much to see and do in Boston. Even though part of the trip was taken up with work, there was still plenty of time to do other stuff and I wouldn’t have been there if it wasn’t for the work part. That was my big trip for the year and I really felt like I went somewhere!

You wouldn't believe how long it took to write these Boston entries and get all the photos into it. I just made up for not posting for a month!
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