It’s a “I don’t wanna” day

cheese&whine

It’s another ugly day today, warm, chilly, damp and dank – just like yesterday. There is no way to regulate the environment – sweaty and chilly at the same time – ah, humidity. I have a love/hate relationship with this area. I’d rather be living in Old Town but then again, I resent the cost of living in OT – paying taxes on my taxes just offends me. But it so convenient living in OT, always something to do and easy to get around.  Where we live now, we are just one stinking mile away from convenience. One stinking mile! If I only had $700,000 to buy a condo. Yup, that’s what prices are like around here – not for my condo, you understand, with a bit of luck I might be able to sell mine for $300,000 – that’s what being one stinking mile away from the action gets you.

We made reservations yesterday for the July visit from the baby princesses and their parents – Da Mama said she wanted to take the kids to the National Zoo and this morning there was an article in the Washington Post about Zoo officials wanting to close the Zoo because of a lack of police. The National Zoo is in Washington, DC aka the murder capital of the US, in a very sketchy neighborhood. So I have 2 months to worry about that. What does one do with 2 toddlers in an apartment, ’cause you know it will probably rain the 4 days they here – that’s how my luck runs.

I was up at the crack of dawn to get the laundry done, and now I’m just moping around, bored, not wanting to do any of things I should be doing or could be doing. Almost 10am and I’m still in my jammies, which actually is not unusual. If we have no errands in the morning then I don’t shower and dress until 11 or so. Getting up at 6am just makes for one g-d long day *sigh*

On the upside – I always, or usually have, an upside – Yay me – For lunch today I will be making a big salad with ‘grilled’ chicken and then in the afternoon there will be fresh strawberries that are so sweet the scent just wafts out of the fridge everytime I open it, covered in fresh whipped cream. I’m not a whipped cream fan except on strawberries. I will be whipping the cream myself – none of that canned stuff, or heaven forfend, that stuff in a plastic container, I can’t even bring myself to use it’s name. Fresh whipped cream is just so easy to do, why oh why do people use that other crap in a can/container?

I’m sure as the day goes by I will have more to whine about because it has been that sort of day…then again there might be more upsides – wanna bet which way the day will go?

Tessie

This post falls into the tl;dr category especially since the intro is rather lengthy. Anyway –  The other day I answered a (new) comment on an (old) post with “If you think Italian weddings are a hoot in hell, they got nothing on Italian funerals! ”  which made me think of my Aunt Tess and the essay I wrote about her. I searched through my ‘documents’ and couldn’t find it. I knew I had a hard copy in my files and when I pulled it out I realized it had been typed on a typewriter and not on a computer.  These essays were written back in the mid 1980’s. I’ve spent the afternoon typing Tessie’s story into my computer and I present it to you now, exactly as originally written (and typed) with no editing. Tho it is not far off from the way I write now, it could use a tune-up.

Let me  introduce you to my Aunt Tess –

Tessie

My godmother’s name is Tessie. She is my father’s older sister. She is in her late 70’s and has blue hair. Actually Tess is rather regal looking. She took after the Torre side of the family – large. Not fat, mind, just large. Actually if you put the family together they look like the back line of the Rams.

Tessie was married to a mafia lawyer, who for the entire length of their marriage maintained another household with another woman.

Jim had a son with this other woman (no kids with Tessie) and Skip and I were waiting for Jim to die so we could go to his funeral and witness the scene when Jim’s son showed up. Tessie knew about the woman but not the son. Well, Jim’s funeral has come and gone and Skip and I missed it. It must have been grand. Actually all Torre funerals are grand affairs, especially with Tessie in attendance. Ah, the sobbing, the breast beating, the flinging of the grief stricken into the coffin – it’s wonderful!

Tessie has a history of funeral performance. The tale is told that when she was a little girl (when funerals were in the home) she would get all dressed up and slip out of the house and wander the neighborhood looking for doors with black wreaths on them. She would go in, tiptoe up to the coffin and begin to cry and weep and wail. Everyone would say “Oh poor child look how upset she is” then they would say “Who is she?” then she would get thrown out.

We often asked her why she went to funerals. She never really answered us, just laughed.

Tessie lives up in Westchester, actually Yonkers, which is still the Bronx, near the race track. Tessie plays the horses – and wins. She has a very scientific method – license plate numbers, birthdays, the color the jockey is wearing, really logical choices but, she wins. She opened a special bank account for her winnings so her husband wouldn’t find out. One day she hit the daily double or the triple or whatever, and won big, I’m talking big! When the tax form came in Jim opened it in error and Tessie nearly had a heart attack. She fluffed it all off and since Jim didn’t really care what Tessie did her private income was safe.

Now my Uncle Al (who is another story altogether) also had a weakness for the track. But he did it logically, condition of the track, past performance of the horse, stuff like that – and lost, all the time. He lost so often that he was in the process of being fitted for cement shoes, if you know what I mean. The only time Tessie lost was when Al went to the track with her and bet on the same horses. Needless to say Tessie did not encourage Al’s company.

After my father died Tessie felt it was her duty to visit my mother every other Saturday or so. Tess would trek down from Yonkers to Long Island and spend the afternoon dragging my mother back and forth to the OTB parlor. In between trips she would listen to the races on the radio. My mother was thrilled to pieces about the whole thing. It kind of blew my mother’s Saturdays.

My mother saw more of Tessie after my father died than in all the 35 years preceding. And of course, you understand, my mother never liked Tessie and Tessie never liked my mother. But family is family and my father was Tessie’s little brother and my mother was his widow…so.

They spent many an afternoon glaring and arguing and rehashing 35 years of insults and slights and coming up with quite a few new ones. I really think Tessie was relieved when my mother moved to Phoenix.

Memorial Day

and Veterans Day are the only holidays I think are worthy of being commemorated. They honor and remember those who have served, and died in service to their country.

The saddest song in all of musical history is Taps…and the most heart-rending version comes from the movie “From Here to Eternity” – In honor of this day

A productive day

Today was cold and rainy, yesterday was cold and rainy and we have about 2 or 3 more of these coming up – I mean the cool and rainy part.

Most mornings I just kinda futz around until 11:30 or so when I have to start cooking. After lunch I continue to futz after I’ve cleaned up the kitchen. Sometimes before  –  Eat lunch, futz, clean the kitchen. Anyway – late afternoon I fluff the bed and do some tidying up, wiping down, dusting – or not. Sometimes I only do the bed fluffing.

Today, after the usual morning of futzing and cooking and eating and futzing and kitchen cleaning-

– I cleaned both bathrooms which included scrubbing the hell out of the shower.

– I futzed

– I cleaned all the mirrors and took down most of the framed art work and cleaned the frames and the glass, I washed a wall (don’t ask!)

– I futzed.

– I’m typing this and then I will fluff the bed, then I will

Futz.

11:30am – It’s been a good day so far

Last night we had major thunder/lightning storms and the power went out but it was sorta late so we went to bed a tad earlier than usual. This morning it was bright and clear and cool, teeny bit humid but not so bad as all that.

Today was grocery shopping day, when we called for an Uber to go home we got a Jeep Cherokee – a nice big car, easy for my disabled, walks with a cane, super tall husband to get in and out of. Plus, the gentleman driving loaded my groceries into the back of the car. Nice man. He was pleasant, chatted a bit about how Virginia was going to the dogs – what with the state  decriminalizing marijuana, ending the death penalty and other assorted things. OK, so maybe he was a bit more conservative than we are but he wasn’t a raving ranting nut job. When we got home, he waited while my husband went into the building to get a cart (our building has shopping carts and luggage carts available at the back door for folks to transport big bulky stuff) and then he loaded our groceries into the cart – again, Nice man. He got the big tip!

As we got to the service elevator, a man was just getting out, unloading luggage and some small storage bins – he said “You’re lucky, I’m just getting off. Another day in paradise, even if it is muggy” I said “I wouldn’t say it was a day in paradise but it is a lovely day.” He said “When I’m not getting shot at, and I’m not wearing body armour and I’m finally getting to see my wife after all these  months – well, it IS a day in paradise” I said “You’re active military?” He replied “Yes, m’am”  I said “Yes, then it is a day in paradise for you. I’m so glad you are home safe. Thank you for your service”

We loaded ourselves into the elevator, got into our apartment, unloaded the grocery bags and as my husband was backing out the door with the shopping cart and his cane this very same gentleman was coming down the hall – he said “Wait, I’ll take that down for you. I’m just getting another load of stuff. Just leave it here in the hall, I’ll take it” We thanked the man profusely.

So it’s not even Noon and we have had the pleasure of interacting with the nicest people all morning. It IS a GOOD day all around.

Best part? I got to use the two most important words in the whole world – THANK YOU – numerous times today – and mean it with all my heart.

Thank you World – you’ve been good to me today and I appreciate it.

thank you