December 31, 2006

Nothing Doing New Year

Just to report that we are officially "in" for the new years eve celebration. BORING.

Hot yoga this morning. We took a walk around the WH reservoir this afternoon. Some beefish thing in the crockpot for dinner. And I spent a few hours down cellar cleaning up - not finished, not even close, but I made a serious dent in the tool area and nobody is going to get killed tripping over things anymore.

Nothing else to report. Going to have a quiet night, and tomorrow I think some work (get my end of month invoices out, mostly - along with some reports and get my training program organized for next week) and a 10:00 am yoga class.

Yoga Dream

I have not consciously dreamed of yoga, until last evening.

I was in a practice, which I perceived to be tomorrow's special new years day practice. We were doing a partner exercise, with one yogi in the posture and the partner assisting, doing an unfamiliar posture which I perceived to be a hip opener. The yogi was in table, doing something with a leg and arm on each side, and the partner was behind the yogi, pressing the leg or arm into the back.

In my case, there was an odd person in the room, and my partner (initially male) abandoned me to work with the odd person (another woman). It did not feel a conscious and deliberate rejection, but rather "I am going to try to work with you both" but in reality, I got short-changed. So I objected, and told my (male partner) I could not work with him and went to work with the odd person (woman)

Except that she also had another person to work with, and again, I was left out. In the course of it all, I realize that my yoga mats (which are in reality fairly new and in good condition) were ripping and shredding under me. Also I recall pushing back into pidgeon (a hip opener I can do alone, without a partner). Finally, I kind of left the studio in frustration, and was driving around. Ostensibly, I had left temporarily (just during this posture) but it seemed like I might not go back.


Wow. Lot's to chew on.

First off, in the studio, doing partner work, this sort of thing never happens. If one is the odd person (and that has happened to me on occasion) one ends up working with the teacher or an assistant - and tends to get a bit of extra attention, a bit more work (no need to reciprocate or trade places). So I do not think I can take the dream literally.

On the surface, it might simply be that I had such a magical new years day practice last year and I am afraid it will be less magical tomorrow.

There is a sexual / relationship aspect of it (first working with a man, then with a woman, being rejected by both) which might be meaningful, in terms of Zippy and myself and our physical relationship. (hip openers = genitals = sexuality)

There might be a "feeling like an outsider at the studio" perspective. And perhaps there is a looming crisis in my practice, an opportunity for misunderstanding, for rejection, for the possibility of me walking away.

Hm....stuff to ponder. Stuff to be conscious of.

Addendum: Ninty minutes of hot yoga later, a new spin on the dream. Perhaps the male partner who was not paying attention to me at first, and the subsequent female partner who was similarly outwardly focused are both me. Both of my life identities so far have spent a lot of time working with others, and perhaps not so much time working with myself. I mean. Duh.

Now who do I make the check for the co-pay out to?

December 30, 2006

Year End Wrap-up

A day early - am I daring the universe to shatter my reality tomorrow by summing up tonight? So be it. The universe and I are dancing, and one cannot be too predictable a partner, eh?

2006 was a year of Spirit and Music for me.

I went to see more music than in recent years (two folk fests, lots of concerts), and I played more music than I had in a decade. I bought two new instruments. And I expect more growth and music to come in 2007.

I did more yoga in 2006, finding my practice grow into more challenging formal practices, and more personal exploration. I took a 10 week course on mindful eating (lots of meditation), and attended a life changing Enlightenment Intensive. I came to a couple of incredible awarenesses about myself and life. I chose to live this specific life. I am a small piece of the divine. Remarkable. Wonderful. Awesome.

I described my birthday in 2006 as the "best birthday ever". Until this year, perhaps. I had a marvelous and magical dinner. I made new friends. I kept one very special old one despite my stubbornness and misunderstanding. I healed some old wounds.

I spent a lot of time with a sweet, wounded, beautiful young woman who I hope to keep a part of my life throughout 2007. My adopted daughter perhaps. I can not save all, but I can damn sure try to save one.

I blogged all year.

I moved back into an office outside our home this year. I found new clients, kept old ones, and kept busy enough to remain challenged and solvent. I laid some foundation to begin to explore writing. My professional life feels reinvigorated (even with way too much morning yoga eating up working hours!)

2006 - thanks. You have been gentle with me and most generous. 2007, welcome. I eagerly await your sunrises and surprises.

Buying Books

It's been ages since I wandered into a bookstore to purchase books. I have been buying online for a while. But Zippy had a gift card from B&N and wanted to browse, so I tagged along. And bought:

* A collection of Mary Oliver poetry "New and Selected Poems, Volume 1". Seems like Mary Oliver has been haunting me for the past year - with certain poems (The Summer Day & Wild Geese) popping up repeatedly at meaningful moments. I owe myself the pleasure of exploring her work more deeply and deliberately.

* A little collection called Zen Inspirations, by Miriam Levering. Just looked like a beautiful little "greatest hits" collection - nice size, wonderfully packaged and illustrated.

* A geek book on PHP and MySQL; I bought one last year and it dod not get me over the hump in terms of developing a database for a client's ticketing system, so let's try this year.....

One last investment in me, to close the book (so to speak) on 2006.

David Newman / Durga Das

Is coming to West Harford Yoga for a special Kirtan this coming Friday (January 5th). I am looking forward to it. Shankara says "....David is a whole different kind of kirtan leader with a more cool and laid back, "folky" approach with guitar and Mira on drums. He is very devotional and takes you right into the heart. Hopefully he will be the first of many more to come....." - and as the guitar player for the WHY kirtan group, I hope to get some ideas and energy from his version of kirtan. Also, will be most fun to be part of the crowd and not up front - so as to be a bit more able to absorb energy.

Information about David Newman / Durga Das here

Information about Kirtan on January 5th here

Please do come! It should be a special evening....

Saddam Hussein

Apparently, Mr. Hussein has been hanged. In Pontius Pilate fashion, he was tried and found guilty and then turned over to the Iraqi's to do the deed - we wash our hands of the matter. Nice of them to take care of this matter near the end of the year, when we have holiday distractions and can start the new year fresh. Ick.

Not sure how I feel about this. Will it inflame the violence in Iraq or has it been an open wound that now can begin to heal?

Certainly, his trial was a sham, a kangaroo court. But surely too, he was a ruthless and evil tyrant who did some horrible things. I am not a huge fan of capital punishment under any circumstances. And I am distinctly ashamed of my country over this matter, but my level of disgust extends so far and deeply these days that I am not sure this one additional boulder added to the pile makes that much difference. What is the death of one man atop the 100's of thousand of Iraqi's killed in the last few years?

On the other hand, the hanging of former heads of state guilty of war crimes does set a nice precedent going into the future. So we got that going for us.

I Hates Fleeces to Pieces

Not really. But I have a lot of 'em (along with hoodie sweatshirts), and I am not loving most of 'em (in terms of fit and color), and they tend to collect in places (bedroom, closet floor, car) so they add to the clutter and mess in my life. A canonical list:

* A dark grey one with the corporate logo of one of my clients. Not bad for corporate gigs where there is weather involved, but its a size too large and it just hangs
* A forest green one for the balloonist I crew for. A pullover, which makes it less useful as a layer, and has a small seam rip (ballooning is a contact sport at times)
* A navy one with another corporate logo (no longer a client) but some nice maroon / green trip - this is my office fleece for when I get cold
* A black Columbia one I just bought for corporate gigs - for whne head to toe black is appropro
* A light grey one I bought in Colorado on one of my trips. No serious sentimental reason, and the pocket got chewed out from within (I foolishly left dog treats in there) and the zipper got broker so I cut the zipper out and now its lining the dog crate
* A red hooded one I picked up at some clearance or closeout; I was hoping it might become a good exercise cover up but it has not fallen into heavy rotation.
* A light blue snowflake hooded fleece that has become my automatic "toss it on in the morning to feed the dogs and putter around the not yet warm house" fashion choice

Those are the fleeces. In terms of hooded sweatshirts:

* A light grey, heavy cotten balloon crew sweatshirt that I still wear to chase - nice and warm albeit a bit frayed
* A dark grey TRINIDAD STATE sweatshirt - good quality, good sentimental meaning
* A dark green generic sweatshirt (good for lawn work and cleaning gutters)
* A (once) bright fushia Champion sweatshirt - kind of frayed and worn
* A dark blue BLOGGER logo sweatshirt - a freebie from when they switched over from a pay service (I had subscribed) to a free one, and kind of an "I was here early" trophy
* A light cotten, light grey colored sweatshirt of fairly indeterminate value and use

Too many damn possessions.

December 29, 2006

A Mile in Her Shoes

Actually 7.2 miles. Did the Farmington Canal Greenway this afternoon with a friend, wherein lots of talking, and reconnecting got done. Also a lot of serious walking. I was bushed when I got home - a pretty strenuous hot yoga class this morning, and a long walk. Feet tired. Legs tired. But good.

Kind of a lazy weekend ahead - no serious plans. Probably jazzercise tomorrow morning, probably yoga on Sunday (maybe) and Monday (most likely). Probably a movie tomorrow night. No serious New Years Eve plans. No serious New Years Day plans.

A couple of late in the day reports came in which I would love to bang out tomorrow so as to bill them this month. I could / would / should get over to the office and do some cleaning. Also on that list, crank out some work on a couple of days worth of training I am doing the week after next - been a while since I fired up the training cannons - need to pull up the old courses, integrate new material and new graphs, format and edit the training manuals, print it all out. Next week will be busy (two days in NY for a PPT gig, one day in Milford prepping show computers)

I suppose it might be a good time to do some year-end summaries or wrap-up or put together some resolutions or something. But.....nah. Life is going pretty well. I burned up my intentions at Kirtan - things to let go, things to manifest. Time to just relax, recoup, and get ready for 2007.

Gentle Twist

Home of the Turkey Asanas, apparently. Have not dug too deeply but looks like a fun read....

(and click on the turkey icon in the upper right, if you are a yogi who practices in a class or at a studio, you will be amused)

December 28, 2006

Ask and You Shall Receive

A week or so ago, my friend Yogababe commented on a post and mentioned:
Also searching for the right 'om' charm or necklace. My vision is sterling, simple, possbily on a thin leather chord or delicate chain.

And today I come home and find an email from someone who said:
The blog writer was interested in finding someone that sells sterling silver OM necklaces. I do.

I love when this stuff happens, but its usually not so rapid, obvious or concrete.

December 27, 2006

Coming Around Again

Apparently, a web radio interview I was featured in back in 2003 has floated to the top of the blogosphere again ("Best of" and all that jazz)

You can run, but you can't hide.....

Friday Night Lights

I am not sure if this has hit too many places in the blogosphere, but it strikes me that along with everything else, Friday Night Lights has an incredible sub-plot with Jason Street dealing with his paralysis. It's pretty incredible in terms of the guys in the wheelchair rugby league, his recovery, his wheelchair bound roommate, all that.

Coming out of a marginalized group myself, I can only imagine the furor that would ensue if the trans community had this sort of a sympathetic and substantial spotlight on a network television show. Not to mention having acting opportunities for a pile of wheelchair athletes.

Pretty damn good television.

Bruce Stevens - WDRC 1360

Popping home from work today I had a deja vu moment - the dulcet tones of Mr. Bruce Stevens, subbing for Dan Lovallo on WDRC 1360 (and going head to head with his old partner Colin), as I scanned the AM dial. Was good to hear him back on the airwaves - here's hoping he finds a permanent spot on the dial soon.

A Clean Desk

I spent some minutes this morning remounting a shelf in my office (for the purpose of having a home for my new office stereo system). At the same time, I cleared off my desk - step 1 in what I hoped would be an office cleaning this week. I suspect the office is *not* going to get cleaned, since I am being hijacked tomorrow. But whatever.

Regardless, having a clean desk is, I think, helping me crank out a few end of the year projects. A lesson learned - investing time in keeping the office clean has some significant benefits in terms of productivity.

Packaging Girlhood

Just heard a quick interview on CM's show with Lyn Mikal Brown, Ed. D - who recently co-authored a book called Packaging Girlhood: Rescuing Our Daughters from Marketers' Schemes.

Good interview, looks like a good book for parents of young women, there is a lot of online content and, well, yeah. I approve wholeheartedly.

December 26, 2006

Holiday Marathon Fini

Wound down four days of holiday madness today with a trip down and back to Westchester County to have lunch with the Zipster's mom. Was very nice - mom is an incredible cook (pork roast, celery root soup, oven glazed potatoes, string beans, roasted apples, a yummy brocollini salad, and coffee souffle for dessert. All I can say is "burp" - it was wonderful.

Lot of driving however - heading down late morning was not bad but coming home we hit traffic - 684, Danbury, Waterbury - so it took about 2.5 hours (I was driving). So not relaxing. I compensated by treating myself to a gentle class (which was more of a restorative class, truth be told) and it was a good way to wean myself from my holiday frantic self and move back into my yoga self.

So - back to the real world for a few days. Work mostly, will get some yoga in I am sure as well as some personal errands. Mostly need to finish up some projects before the end of the month, clean up and organize my office, start to do my year-end collecting of records, data, and paper, and work on putting together a training seminar for the beginning of January.

Disappointments

We spent some time yesterday - cooking, preparing, cleaning - for xmas day drop-ins. It ended up just being 3 of us: Me, Zippy, and our dear friend AC. While we had no firm commitments from anyone (we simply mentioned to people who seemed footloose that we were going to be home if they wanted to drop by), we also figured at least someone might visit. Nope. Understandable - no firm plan, verbal check-in, last minute, and people have things to do. But nonetheless, it was a little disappointing.

Continuing the trend, I popped by the studio this morning for a 6 a.m. "hour of power" class - which did not happen. There were only two of us waiting outside the studio (so clearly, it was cancel-worthy) but a note on the website might have been useful.

So I wandered into the office (where I am now) to set up my new stereo and crank out a report. We're heading down to Westchester this morning for lunch with Zippy's mother and sister.

Buddha Boy Returns

I blogged back in March about the disappearance of Nepal's Buddha Boy. Apparently, sixteen-year-old Ram Bahadur Bamjon has returned."I have been wandering in the forests since then," Bamjon has reportedly said. "I am engaged in devotion which will continue for six years."

Very interesting. Also interesting, the tree under which the Buddha Boy has chosen to sit under looks to be the same or similar genus to the iconic scenic root under which I blog (at least looking at the roots).

Wow.

December 25, 2006

Slow and Steady

Oak will burn as long and hot as a July afternoon,
And birch will burn itself out by the rising of the moon.
Lyrics from the song Birches, by Bill Morrissey. I have been thinking a bit about the slow and steady path - about commitment, energy, longevity.

I have watched recently as a number of support spaces and online communities flare into life, sputter and burn, and then quickly die out. I have become aware that my relationship with the Zipster - uncommitted, unwed, un-civil unionized, is nevertheless a long term one at this point - we have been dating for over 6 years, cohabitating for more than 5 years. One of my clients will soon face the task of replacing an assistant - the third person in this role in the years I have worked with her, and I suspect there will be some small chaos and upheaval in the interim. And in so many places and spaces in my life, I watch with a small smile as people panic, over-react, are quick to anger or judgement. I am patience.

My chinese birth year animal is the ox - and sometimes I feel just so - steady, strong, not so swift or svelte or flexible. But always pulling the plow, always yoked up. Sooner or later, we will get there. Being an ox is not always good - I am slow to anger but once I get there, its difficult to let that go. I carry long simmering grudges - with insufficient energy to flare up and burn off - just enough to keep them lit and warm.

I am not sure how I got to this point - age? wisdom? tempering? just being around long enough?
In any case - where I might have been thought a shallow and quick stream at one point in my life, I seem to have become a deeper and slower moving river as I inexorably make my way to the sea.

On the First Day of Christmas.....

....I cleaned the copper bottom pots and pans. It's been a while, they were pretty tarnished and dirty, and we're having guests over today. So, a holiday tradition is born.

We're having some friends over today which may end up being as few as one person and as many as 8. Have a small turkey, some sweet potatoes, and brocolli, along with some appetizers and leftover desserts. No big deal, but we are doing some above and beyond cleaning of the clutter and mess nevertheless. As good an opportunity as any. Might even fire up the fireplace today!

I am fretting about the lack of vino (Zippy is not a drinker and is fairly adamant about that; I have some beers left over from various functions but no wine, and no hard stuff).

Happy xmas to all. If you are feeling all punk today - go see a movie or go for a walk or hike - looks like it will be a nice day out there, at least during the first part of the day.

December 24, 2006

Momisms

Part of the family lore is my mother's mangling of aphorisms and phrases. We call these "Momisms". She will say things like:

"He does not have two wooden nickels to rub together" (broke) or "She must have stepped in something" (lucky, implying that she stepped in dog poop and this is karma balancing out) or "Made out like a banshee indian" (a conjunction of "scream like a banshee" and "made out like a bandit")

Last year, we noticed that every gift from Mom for my brother Tom was labelled To Tom, Love Mom and every gift from Mom for my brother-in-law Tom was labeled To Tom, From Mom. Hilarity ensued.

Today's xmas Momism: She wrote nice card's to each of us, wishing us a merry xmas and a successful new year. My brother Kevin was specifically wished "All good things for 1907" Helluva big laugh.

Of course, both my sister and I left the price on gifts this year - also a mom tradition. Whenever one of us does that, we look at the other and mouth "MOM" - a silent acknowledgement that we are heading that way as well.

Day 1 of the Holiday

A fairly successful Saturday as we move into the holiday weekend. Started with Jazzercise (a regular sub who gave us a wonderfully aerobic workout!). After that, I went to fetch MYA, stopping at 2-3 package stores in a vain search for bottles of Pesce Vino, a rather inauspicious wine (I think) that comes in a noteworthy fish shaped bottle. My goal - gifting the wine, a bottle of dish soap, and a drink pourer stopper to by siblings - the fish bottle makes a decorative dish soap container. Thanks to MB for the concept, but the one place where I have seen the wine (Crazy Bruce's in West Hartford) was out, and nowhere else (including Crazy Bruce's in Bristol) carried it.

With MYA in tow, we stopped at the house to fetch Zippy and food (dump cake, cajun beans, and el cheapo rolls) for the support group holiday meal. That went OK - the food was delicious, the atmosphere was so-so (we should have bought some table clothes and set a formal table, IMHO) but it was nice. Afterwards, we boogied out a bit early (Zippy was falling asleep) and hung out at the house for a while before I took MYA home.

MYA liked her gifts (Hello Kitty pajamas and a book) and I also gifted her family with an inexpensive DVD player (she has DVD's to watch, her baby brother I am sure will benefit, and her mom by having the baby occupied). Not too pricey at Sears - I should have gotten one for the house (our DVD player is old, large, and finicky)

While I shuttled MYA home, CM stopped by after the meeting and we had a nice visit. She and Zippy got some time to talk before I came home. It was good to see her and spend some time with her.

Today, we head up north to Bolton MA for xmas eve with my family. We are taking a modest pile of giftage, some snackage (beef log, cheese, crackers), two bottles of wine, and ourselves. Should not be a long day - Mom and Bro's are heading to 6 pm mass and we will probably head back around then.

New Blogger

With abandon, I migrated to the new blogger interface. I say with abandon because I use blogger to manage content on about 20 webpages for clients. My recreational blog (here) is a more or less traditional blog but I also use blogger to manage news pages, manage front page marketing icons, manage small news scroll bar content. Lot of places to have to go patch and fix if the new interface is a problem.

So far, so good.

December 23, 2006

High Functioning

Also, let it be known that on top of all the bloggishness being spewed forth this morning, I also made a jumbo batch of cajun-garlic green beans, crawled back under the covers for some snuggle time with the Zipster, and I am heading out to Jazzercise. It's 7:50 a.m.

No Spare Capacity

In which our heroine lays out her Nobel Prize winning (ha! right!) grand unifying theory of three systems that are getting broken by the information era (the ability to squeeze spare capacity out of the system), the drive for efficiency, and the free market. My targets: the passenger air system, the electric utility, and hospital beds.

Back in the bad old days before computers (and before the rising costs of energy) there was a certain excess capacity, a fudge factor built into these systems. Let's start with airlines. Planes rarely flew full - almost every flight had 10 or 20 empty seats, often in first class, but they were there. So a problem - a mechanical issue, weather, a late flight, dumped 100 or 200 passengers that were quickly absorbed into a reasonably robust system.

These days a single flight cancellation can cause major havoc to a system running at capacity, without the ability to absorb extra bodies. Twice in the past few weeks, I've been on late / cancelled flights, and instead of being told "we can get you there in a few hours" the answer has been "we can get you there late tomorrow". In both cases, my trips were not mission critical, I simply canceled them, and got reimbursed. So I (and other customers) end up suppplying the extra capacity - instead of the airlines, some passengers cross the threshold of arriving too late or not at all, and simply leave the system.

The recent blizzard debacle in Denver is good case. Weather is unpredictable - but one wonders if the impact of closing one airport sent too many shockwaves through the system. And how long will it be before those stranded (in Denver, or elsewhere) get to where they are going? My bet - a lot of the excess capacity will come from passengers - deciding not to fly this holiday, not getting home, taking alternate forms of transportation.
Some travelers gave up hope of making it home for the holidays as airlines running at near-full capacity had little room on planes for thousands stranded after Denver International Airport closed amid a blizzard.

Trends to look out for as a result: alternate transportation channels (trains?) are going to begin looking more reasonable / realistic. And travel agencies (yahoo travelocity, in my case) are going to lose sales - since in both cases I could not get credited immediately from the airline. In future, I may find flights via a travel service but book direct with the airline.

That's the air travel industry. In the case of the electric utilities, the free market has split generation from distribution. So electric utilities are no longer able to paternally plan for capacity and reserves - they buy kilowatts on the free market, and market forces drive available capacity. But the result is that the system optimizes rather quickly to a capacity point which has no margin for error or for severe circumstances. The blackout of 2003 is one result. Another result is that utilities are switching power grids and capacitors more and more to maintain system reliability (impacting quality of the power). In the past, the system had extra capacity, had reserves.

Finally, in the case of hospital beds, the old days of subsidized hospitals with plenty of extra beds has given way to industry consolidation and specialization. Hospitals with extra beds are closed or consolidated or specialized. Elective procedures formerly done inpatient are pushed to clinics, hospital stays become convalescent stays. And the next time there is a serious health crisis - an epidemic, a pandemic, a new disease, a terrorist attack, a natural disaster - well, those in need of medical care will be out in the halls and in the streets.

My theory is that left to the free market, under cost pressures, and in the age of information systems, the excess capacity gets squeezed out of these systems pretty quickly. But perhaps a little bit of excess capacity is not a bad thing - to deal with extenuating circumstances, worst case scenarios. And unless the government steps in to mandate that capacity, to subsidize that capacity - well, it will not be there when we need it.

December 22, 2006

An unusual christmas gift


So, let's say you get to the holiday and you get an unexpected gift from someone. You want to reciprocate - but wht to get the person who has everything.

Might I suggest a copy of The Stray Shopping Carts of Eastern North America: A Guide to Field Identification (Hardcover)by Julian Montague

We saw an exhibition by this artist at REAL ART WAYS a few years back and were charmed - the book is a hoot - professionally done, well conceived and polished, and almost (Andy) Kaufmanesque - you never quite know if its serious or not.

We picked up a copy for Zippy's baby brother Adam, an artist in his own right. Adam tells a meanly funny story of a stint as a shopping cart wrangler at a grocery store in one of his lean periods, so we decided he needed this book badly. He was sorely impressed, and now we need to pick up copies for other family members. I mean - you just know this is a gift that they do not have, and is about the perfect coffee table conversation starter.

Two Musical Women

Zippy and I surfed the channels for a few minutes tonight before clicking off the television. In lieu of video, we've been sitting here together listening to music made by two friends.

Victoria Bouffard has a new CD out called All the Reasons. Find her on Myspace here. We camp with Victoria every year at Falcon Ridge - and we're excited for her new CD - we've been listening to a rough cut version that she sent around to get feedback a while back - so we are excited to get her final disk.

Following Victoria, we plunked in some CD's from an old and so very dear friend Jane Bolduc, who has an older acoustic disk out there as well as a more recent (and more produced) EP disk.

Really enjoying listening to both of these talented and wonderful women. If you have some spare bucks and want to support some independent musicians, you could do worse....and I think there are some freebie MP3's floating around out there on the web. Give 'em a listen!

A Slow Start

Worked this morning; got some reports out and a couple of letters of introduction. Good time to plant some seeds for the new year.

After lunch, Zippy and I went shopping - Apple Tree and Stop n' Shop. Getting ready for the holidays.

We have a gala four day streak ahead of us. Tomorrow, probably Jazzercise, then a support group dinner - need to pick up MYA beforehand and drop her off afterwards. Sunday, up to my sister's place for xmas eve. Monday, xmas day here will be quiet, although we are cooking a turkey and making dinner, and will have a few friends over (holiday strays). Tuesday, down to Westchester County for dinner with Zippy's mom and family. We all came in our cumberbunds.....

Hot yoga this night - although not the usual instructor and not so hot - between a lighter practice, a cooler room, and having fans going, I did not sweat much - and used a blanket during savasana (unheard of for a sweat-monkey like me). A good practice, and the blanketed savasana was snuggly. Not what I expected, but not a bad prelude to what will be a busy few days.

Oh, and Happy Solstice

We noted it's coming last night at the Creative Cocktail Hour (7:22 pm)

6:00 a.m. Phone Call

My cell phone just rang, its 5:55 a.m. I did not get to it in time, and do not recognize the CT number - waiting to see if there is a voice mail.

My suspicion - its MYA who tends to be on a goofy sleep pattern and calls me once in a while in the early morning expecting to get the voice mail.

December 21, 2006

Creative Cocktail Hour, Holiday Edition

I have not gone much of late, for lots of reasons, but I went tonight. And it was a good night.

As I walked from my car to the door, I saw a friend Chris driving in. Waited for her, got a big hug, and had a schmoozing buddy for a while. Connected her to AC (Chris is thinking of relocating to AC's neck of the woods), and she and her BF might pop by on Xmas (our small dinner is turning into an open house for holiday strays, much to my delight, huzzah, hooray)

KC was there, so I got to schmooze with her a little. An old friend Bill was there (had not seen him in 5-6 years) and although I have certainly changed since we last met, he had as well. Nice to connect with him.

Also met many other people (between KC, AC, Bill, Chris, and the strangely gregarious Colin, there was a lot of mingling and networking and handing off of hangers on going on). It was the sort of "Wow, I know people and there is energy and synergy here" kind of thing that was really good. So...fun.

I did not actually get in to see the art, but I bet we end up at RAW sometime over the holiday, so I will catch it then in a quieter and more intimate time-frame.

Polka Christmas

For some strange reason, courtesy of WWUH, 91.3, and F.M. On Toast (Pine Grove Blues, River City Slim)

Zippy just came into the living room. "Think I've had enough of this christmas shit" says she. Click, off goes the radio. I'll find a nice soothing CD.....

December 19, 2006

World Yoga Championships

I practice with a few yoga instructors, all of them wonderful in their own way, and having access to them all is wonderful. One in particular is fond of saying "Yoga is not a competitive sport" usually, in the midst of a difficult or challenging posture that only a few in the room are able to get themselves into. The rest of us flail, strain, grunt, make funny faces, then look around the room to see if someone is actually able to get into the posture. Then we put on our complacent yoga faces to hide our burning yoga envy.

Except that, apparently, yoga is a competitive sport. The 15th annual World Yoga Championships have recently been conducted in Delhi India (Dec 12 - 16). A group of five young yogi's from Pune, India walked away with the lion's share of medals: 7 Gold, 2 Silver, and 2 Bronze. Story here. Who knew?


And who knew there was a yoga flag? Surely not I. I am even at this moment pondering the purchase of same and wondering how and where and when I might have the opportunity to unfurl it. Yoga Pride Day, maybe? The metaphysical conundrum of that concept is shattering my reality even as I type this. Heh.

Also linked in, the World Wide Yoga Council, which has so many names and faces among its emiritus, active members, teachers, and advisors that it makes me think twice about yoga - I mean, I've always perceived it to be a sort of nice little niche community. Dang. Yogi's run amok!

A Trip Deferred

Ah well, the best laid plans.

The USAir flight out to Charlotte was highly delayed - mechanical difficulties. At 6:40 (departure time) the flight was still on the ground at it origination city. So I could have gotten to Charlotte tonight, but not to Little Rock until past 4:00 pm tomorrow. (all the earlier flights were full). So I would have had to reschedule my return flights (instead of Thursday afternoon) but the flights were so full due to the holiday weekend that they could not guarantee me a seat untul after xmas.

No thanks. I cancelled, called the client, we will try to work remotely tomorrow. Pain in the neck - but I am glad to not be traveling.

This is the second time in two weeks I have been shut down, flight wise. Not really happy about that.....but what can you do. I am convinced that the air travel infrastructure is pretty close to being permanently broken.

Good News / Bad News / Good News

Good news: since I got to the airport so early, I was able to claim an exit row aisle seat en route to Charlotte.

Bad news: The flight to Charlotte seems to be running late - with a scheduled 6:40 pm departure pushed back to 8:15 pm. Doh!

Good news: My connection to the Little Rock Flight is somewhat generous (scheduled for 75 minutes) so I have some fluff time to play with before I am faced with spending the night in Charlotte. I assume they will hold the Little Rock flight, although it looks close at this point.

Episode VII: Off to Little Rock

In which our intrepid heroine sits at the gate at Bradley Airport, waiting for a USAir flight to Charlotte, with a connection to Little Rock, AZ.

Why Little Rock? Damned if I know. A client has equipment that is having problems. Or is not having problems, but a power quality report raised some flags. Or not. The wild goose chase du jour: grounding.

I suspect its a case of getting to the site, digging through the electrical system, making some measurements, taking some pictures. Go over some theory with the onsite engineers, then come home and write up a trip report. I am flying this evening and will not get into Little Rock until way late. I have return flights booked for Thursday that get me back into town after 9 p.m.; hope I can sneak onto an earlier flight.

If I had spoken to the site folks prior to today I might have been able to talk them out of a site visit. But I had booked things prior to conencting with the on site folks, so away I go. Not exactly the best way to spend the week before the xmas holiday, but its a living, no? One last billable for 2006.

2007 is shaping up to be busy - I have to do an end of year turnover for one of my clients websites; I also want to implement a better ticketing system with a database to permit more flexible ticketing. I have a production gig for the first week of January, and a training program in Wisconsin for the 2nd. Busy girl. Woman. Whatever.

In preparation for this week's trip, I pulled a yoga marathon, hitting three consecutive days of morning hot classes. Sunday was hard, Monday was sublime, and today was also delicious.

Crank du jour: I popped up hear very early (expecting Hartford traffic as well as Bradley crowds), thinking if I got here early I could grab a Fresh City wrap for dinner (always yummy) but did not realize that US Air shares the crappy, underconstruction United gate area which means my dinner became a rather bland salad and a meat (of dubious origin) lovers pizza. Yum. Not.

December 17, 2006

Pleasant Valley Sunday

A quiet Sunday. Starting with hot yoga - a class of humility. Methinks the combination of kirtan on Friday (3 hours of fairly scrunched legs), Jazzercise on Saturday, Thursdays aborted trip (3 hours on a plane, going nowhere) and no serious strength yoga since Tuesday (a gentle-ish practice on Thursday) all added up to weakish legs. I got tired, and my legs were shaking at times. Ow!

After yoga, we puttered. I put together my client xmas gifts, and got those all mailed out today. For future reference, the Paypal / Ebay site has some mailing features that permit label printing, no fees or monthly service charge a la stamps.com (which is about as cost effective as a Pitney Bowes postage meter, that is to say, now very)

Zippy went out raking; she did most of it and I helped at the end. Between yesterday and today - 12 bags of leaves and rubbish to hit the rubbish bin over the past coming weeks.

I made a nice dinner; spaghetti squash with a tomato-ish sauce: peppers, onions, diced tomatoes, zucchini, and tofu. Topped with a bit of Mozzarella - yum.

December 16, 2006

Faith of our Fathers

Apparently, John Rowland is pinning his future on faith.

Call me cynical, but why is it that fallen politico's always seem to find salvation through Christianity, and more specifically, the bible quoting born again version? I mean, its not like its the official state religion of the republican party, or the best way to ween ones way back into the hearts of those in power, be they business leaders or politicians.

I'd believe a prison conversion if the former Gov came back a true believer in Falung Gong or Buddhism or Islam or Christian Science or Quakerism or Judaism. Something other than George W Bush's version of Chrisitanity, thank you. Something that does not smack of sucking up to the religious right.

Hell, I bet he could parley this into a run for the presidency (Can convicted felons hold high office?). Nothing plays better than a repentent sinner.....

Saturday Afternoon

A warmish December day. Zippy and I spent some time outdoors, making a dent in the jungle that is the right side of our house - an overgrown perennial garden, lots of weeds and vines, unraked ground. Seven garbage bags later, we made a dent in it.

Kirtan was wonderful yesterday although it was a LONG day. Went over for set-up around 2:30 until 4:30, then home for dinner, then back at 7:15. We chanted from 8:10 to 11:10, then hung out and schmoozed, the cleaned up. I got home around 1:00 a.m.

S, M, and I went out afterwards to burn our intentions in the fire pit - things that we want to let go, things that we want to manifest. As we burned our last papers, a wind came up, swirled the burning ashes around and into the night sky, and blew shut the studio door. It felt very much as if energy had been released!

The chanting went well - guitar was much more in the mix this time (which people liked) and no major faux pas - one new chant that nobody had been told about (I found a key, and a verse or two in I found the chords). By the time we got to the Snatam Kaur song (lots of delicate guitar) I had been playing close to 2.5 hours non stop. Not too much subtlety left over.

This morning, Jazzercise. I stopped by WHY to drop off some food (yoga for food workshop today, but I decided to skip the yoga). We went shopping for food. I have a pot roast going in the crock pot for dinner.

December 15, 2006

Not your usual vomiting forth of consumerism

This christmas season, that is.

Somewhere along the line, my family has developed a sort of christmas pathology. Gifts = love. I trace it back to two family stories that I know (there may be more)

1) When she was young and just out on her own and working as a nurse, my mother, with her own money for the first time, purchased gifts for her entire family (10 siblings!) - but the gifts were stolen from her car.

2) Around 1973, my father lost his job in York, PA at McCrory's, and that year we were prepped for a slim christmas. I specifically recall that year there were plenty of presents under the tree, and I literally cried because I had been all ready for a "Little House on the Prairie" christmas (I got an orange and a pair of socks!)

Anyway, my immediate family tends to overgift with abandon.

This year things seem to be different. Three family members (mom, brother, sister) have let it be known that they'd like something large - so we are all chipping in. So that leaves one brother, a neice, and two nephews to buy for.

I'll probably pick up some smallish things, maybe something personal for mom. And Zippy is getting a little something for the kitchen / health (although she and I do not formally gift). I have a boatload of balloon calendars for clients, and I will probably pick up some gift cards for the receptionists at work, my zapper, and my stylist. Oh, and MYA needs a little something.

But all in all, not a lot of holiday madness.

Precious Breath

Went to Kelkolo's in Middletown last night to hear Peter Anthony. Always entertaining, Mr. Anthony. In the course of things, I imbibed in two double desserty latte-ish drinks (leaded) and when I went to bed the caffeine induced physiological affects were pretty evident. I slept OK (and was up early) but it was a lesson learned in the "wow, thats pretty much how you were all the time before you stopped drinking caffeine" vein.

Peter was Peter. Which is to say amusing, entertaining, tender, and occasionally touching on the sublime and divine. I owe a lot of my "less is more" picking and strumming from him, he has come to joke about two string songs (and noted that I have commented on that in the distant past). And I confess to knowing much of his canon by heart, simply from hearing these songs (the ones he writes, the ones he covers) so many times over the past 15 years.

Peter's friend K was there, who I run across at WHY. She works at a senior home, prompting Zippy to comment that she'll kill herself before going into one of those. Now maybe this is the response of a person who has enjoyed fairly good health, who has not dealt with a lifetime of discomfort, medical intervention, and juggling the effects and side effects of medications for multiple diseases. But at this point in life, I do not feel the same way. Each breath is a new learning experience, each breath is precious.

Yoga? Spiritual awakening? A lifelong optimism and hope? Or the overly optimistic and pollyanna-ish beliefs of someone who has yet to butt up against real pain, sufferring, and discomfort in her life. Not sure.

December 14, 2006

Best Laid Plans

Well, I almost made it to Atlanta.

My 7:30 am flight was cancelled due to mechanical problems. SO I was booked onto a 9:00 a.m. flight. That flight got fogged in (at Bradley) for close to 2 hours - then as they were releasing us in Hartford, Atlanta had a hold on arrivals (weather and traffic) - I deboarded around 11:30 am - it was too late to get down there for my 1:30 pm meeting.

So, I am gonna do the meeting remotely (just tossed my slides online in PDF format, in case) and we'll go from there.

No biggie - gives me a bit of breathing room. A chance to practice for Kirtan, a chance to do some yoga or maybe jazzercise, and maybe go see my friend Peter Anthony trod the boards (or pluck the strings) at Klekolo this evening.

More Like It

....blogging from the airport. Now I'm fulfilling my minimum requirements as a blogger!

En route to Atlanta; I was up this morning at 4:30, hoping to be en roue at 5:30 am, but as I stepped out of the shower I got a robo-call from the good folks at Delta informing me that my 7:30 am flight was cancelled (BDL was pretty fogged in this morning, its still foggy out there) and so I was on a 9:00 a.m. flight. No biggie - my meeting is at 1:30 so I have a good 2 hours to get from the airport to the site. So I got to crawl back into bed for an hour.

I'm also drinking a cuppa leaded coffee - I have been off caffeine for a while now but one cup will not hurt - help get me started this morning.

Not much else to blog - today is fly / meeting / dinner (Malay - yum!), tomorrow is fly and then into busy bee mode for kirtan. No idea what is on tap for the weekend - I am not thinking that far ahead.

Rest of the trip down - I have some emails to clean up, and I have a powerpoint that I am going to tweak for the meeting this afternoon.

December 13, 2006

Hot-lanta

Not being a very good blogger, me.

It's been a busy week; I've had a largish work project in the works which I finally squeeked out today. And I am heading to Atlanta tomorrow morning for a quick trip (fly down tomorrow morning, fly back Friday morning). Not quick enough, apparently, one of my local friends / clients also happens to be in Atlanta tomorrow night so we've scheduled dinner with a third (local) friend.

Quick summary. Sunday was morning yoga and a balloon party. Monday was work and evening Jazzerise. Tuesday was work, morning yoga, more work, and a mentoring meeting. Today was work and zapping and a support group for the Zipster tonight. Tomorrow - Atlanta all day. Friday Atlanta in the morning, coming back late morning. At that point - errands, catch up, help set up the sound system for Kirtan, and then the big winter Kirtan at WHY.

Saturday and Sunday - I dunno. My PDA is at the office; I need to fetch it and directions and stuff on the way home from tonights meeting.

December 10, 2006

Balloon Party

A holiday gathering of airheads, spiced up by the passing around of photo albums circa the late 70's, mid 80's, and mid-90's (balloonists are a particularly narcissistic bunch, and love to see pictures of their balloons).

Thankfully, no photos of your faithful correspondant (who has been crewing since around 1984, with some significant gaps) from those particular eras surfaced.

In other news, somebody found my blog with the search term "loonette the clown and paganism". Should I be more scared that someone was searching for this particular combination of terms, or that my blog popped up baed on this search?

More Colin More Gooder

I know it's been a period of upheaval for my favorite pundit, with his radio partner being canned, NE magazine disappearing, family stuff, dental stuff, etc.

But, for the record, having a weekly dose of Colin McEnroe in the Hartford Courant is not a bad thing. Unless, perhaps, you are Colin McEnroe, and are now facing a weekly (as opposed to biweekly) deadline.

This means his personal productivity has doubled, right, as measured as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product? Doing his part to help the American economy!

Happy (sorta) Birthday to Me

Not my real birthday; for the record I am a Pisces (Piscean? Piscus?)

But December 10 is a day of some meaning, to me anyways.

December 09, 2006

Goodwill (and all that Jazz) to Wo(men)

Well, not Goodwill. Salvation Army, actually. I've been thrift storing in Bristol, had some time to kill en route from dropping MYA off at home. I'm particularly happy with the funky print pants I am finding - kirtan wear, more festive work and party wear. I have a certain style developing. These are not my clothes, remember.....

Back at the homefront, I am listening to WMNR (Monroe based, but broadcasting in West Hartford at 91.9 FM) - which has been been airing totally outstanding jazz and swing: ‘Big Band Hall of Fame’ with Susan Kennedy from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm, and ‘Swing & Jazz’ with John Danscuk from 9:00 pm to Midnight. Definitely going to become a Saturday night tradition here.

In other news, I hit Jazzercise this morning for the first time in ages - a good workout. Definitely a different energy level than yoga - not as much sweat, but more aerobic. It felt good to be back - odd because a lot of new faces (in just a few months) but also some old friends who were happy to see me back. I think I need to be more careful at Jazzercise - to keep from pulling hamstrings, achilles tendon, or irritating my elbow / shoulder - might drop down to 5 lb hand weights. But I think I will cut back a teeny bit on yoga and try to Jazzercise 2x a week.....

Reverting to Form

Last night, crawling around on the floor in the spare bedroom to plug in a peripheral, Zippy noticed a pronounced "plumber's crack" (in my defense, I had my jammies on)

And later, I decided out of the blue, to have a beer.

please if you get a chanse put some flowrs on Algernons grave in the bak yard...

Back to Jazzericse

It's been a long time since I trod the wood in Ryka's and spandex. My last class card expired Sept 29th; I think I went to one class in November. But, been a while.

I was taking a workshop on Monday nights throughout the fall that conflicted with one of my regular Jazzercise nights. I was balloon chasing throughout the fall, usually on Saturday mornings, another regular session. I have been mindfully aware of being too much "out there" and not enough "in here" in terms of spending time, meals, energy, etc. with the Zipster. Finally, I have been too enamored of yoga.

But today, I am headed back to Jazzercise. And I am gonna buy a class card, and going to get there 1-2 times a week. Jazz hands! Chasse! Attitude!

December 08, 2006

Friday Night

Quiet night; Zippy and I are hanging out, channel surfing. Waiting for AC to pop by. Should be a quiet weekend as well - Jazzercise and taking MYA to a support space on Saturday, yoga and a holiday get-together tomorrow. Maybe go pick up some balloon calendars (my annual holiday gift to clients) one day this weekend.

I'm headed to Atlanta next week - Thursday into Friday. A new client, connected with them at RSNA. So I have a report to crank out on Monday for them, and get some presentations together for visit. Along with some work for another newish client and my regular stuff - December is shaping up to be pretty busy. And I have a production gig the first week in January.

December 07, 2006

Bush in Tears

This story hit the media a few days back. Apparently, in a speech at a leadership forum in Tallahassee, George H. Bush broke down in tears while discussing the leadership, and his son Jeb's first gubernatorial loss in Florida.

Thomas de Zengotita has a great take on it here - which I pretty much agree with. But I will add a few thoughts. Jeb Bush *was* the chosen one, the one who should have carried the Bush standard (and maybe the gubernatorial loss that Dad was recalling was the moment he got untracked). Perhaps Bush I is suffering with the rest of the country under his son's so called leadership, more so for having created this monster.

And perhaps he is aware that for the rest of time, the country, the world, history is not going to recall 4 years of fairly moderate leadership under the Bush banner (I never disliked Bush I, he struck me as a decent man, somewhat patrician and privileged but he was neither a puppet nor an firm ideologue). Instead, the name of Bush will now and forever be associated with 8 years of mismanagement, idiocy, lying, waste, needless death and suffering.

In the arc of the saga, as historians note the influence of the Bush family on the world history, perhaps historians will note that 1994 election defeat as the moment it all started to go wrong. And Bush the First, I suspect, is a smart man. He know's his legacy started to die on that day, and any good thing he has done with his life has been overshadowed by the sins of his son.

To shift back into comedy and irrelevance - will Jenna and Barbara become the Luke and Leia of this saga - rising to the challenge, joining the rebellion, learning the ways of the force, avenging the evil emporer and saving the soul of their father gone over to the side of evil?

Not holding out much hope.....

December 06, 2006

Cell Phones and Cancer

OK, I am not a huge cell phone-ista. I own one, of course, and have for years, but I tend to use it sporadically - quick calls here and there, some longer calls while driving. I still have access to (and use, mostly) land lines at the office and at home. Hell, I even maintain a second fax line at the office, even through its been years since I did a lot of work via fax. Occasionally the memory function makes it useful (I have not reprogrammed my office speed dial in eons, and my home speed dial is not even programmed).

That being said, this news is good:
A huge study from Denmark offers the latest reassurance that cell phones don't trigger cancer. Scientists tracked 420,000 Danish cell phone users, including 52,000 who had gabbed on the gadgets for 10 years or more, and some who started using them 21 years ago.

They matched phone records to the famed Danish Cancer Registry that records every citizen who gets the disease — and reported Tuesday that cell-phone callers are no more likely than anyone else to suffer a range of cancer types.

I do some freelance work in the video production field, and whenever a high profile media celeb (who presumably, is a heavy cell phone user) comes down with brain cancer, the looks go around and the words are silently mouthed "cell phone".

It's hard sometimes to set aside anecdotal evidence for hard epidemiological evidence. But I'm going to try to.

December 05, 2006

Guilty Pleasure

Friday Night Lights. Yeah, that show. Damned if I know why, but I am hooked in a way that I rarely get, with television shows.

I noticed that Snuffy Waldrun has done the music. Hearkening back to 30-something, another addictive show a long time ago in a galaxy far far away.

Coat Drive & Yoga for Food & Kirtan

If you have no longer worn but serviceable coats, consider brigning them down to West Hartford Yoga - the studio has a coat drive each holiday season.

On Saturday, December 16, the studio has a special power class, free with a bag of donated non-perishable food. The haul will go to the local Foodshare. Not 100% sure of the class time, think its in the late afternoon or early evening....will post details as I get 'em.

And on Friday, Dec 15th, join us for Kirtan, led by Shankara and Friends. I am proud to be among the "friends", playing guitar. This is a very special Kirtan, with a ceremonial burning of things we'd like to let go of, and things we would like to manifest. It can be very powerful and renewing, so please join us!

December 04, 2006

Midway Through

Nice training setup they have here at CR Computing Service, Inc (CCS) - with internet access, shared presentation monitors, decent food, etc.

I am becoming wise in the ways of SSIDs, IPs, WEP, WPA, MAC Addresses, and assorted other wireless networking stuff. Well, wise enough to get myself into trouble, I imagine. Hopefully wise enough to either back out of jams or to find the hardware reset button.....

Forgot About That

I signed up for a subsidized course on Wireless Networking at Connecticut Computer Service, Inc. in Plantsville (Southington) today. Which I totally forgot about - until I got into the office and for some reason remembered.

More than enough time to get my sorry rear end down here, and they have net access at the workstations which is quite nice. Not 100% functional, but I can work a little in the downtime. Which is now....(class did not get started yet)

Work Week Ahead

Monday morning dawns cold, with the threat of our first snow of the season (flurries or showers, perhaps). It's been a busy weekend and I am looking forward to getting into work and getting things done.

Last night, we went to see the Marriage of Figaro at Trinity on Main in New Britain. Our friend Laurentiu played two smallish parts (Antonio and Bartolo), but the opera itself was very enjoyable and the rest of the cast was excellant. Figaro especially was wonderful vocally and performance wise, Susanna was as well. Nice evening.

Still recovering from the yoga beating I took this week; I will probably hit the mat again on Tuesday. Tonight is a the first of two follow-up sessions (eating awareness) and tomorrow I see MYA for the first time in a while. Thursday night is Kirtan practice; I should spend some time practicing before that. Friday afternoon there is a DCF / Safe Harbors appreciation thing.

Goals for this week (outside of work) include doing something about the back porch (the holiday stuff ended up out there, a bunch of boxes of work / support group / life ephemera as well, and the hardware for the last "backyard flood" also - along with two bicycles. The basement too needs a lot of attention.

December 03, 2006

Wrung Out

On the clothesline, drying in the cold sunshine, are two yoga mats, two sets of yoga clothes, and a pair of leather work gloves.

Between a three hour yoga workshop yesterday and an hour and a half of hot yoga this morning, I am drained. The feeling is almost catharsis / mind altering.

Oh yeah, we got the gutters cleaned out. Even the high ones (we borrowed a ladder, both Zippy and I took turns at the top)

December 02, 2006

Bollywood - Lagaan

We're about an hour into watching this 3.5 hour movie, courtesy of Netflix. And LOVING it.....

The musical / dance numbers are incredible - very fun.

Post Film Wrap-up: The music is infectious. The plot compelling. The actors skilled and good looking too. Lots of somewhat heavy handed moralizing but yanno, thats OK. We watched 3.5 hours of movie tonight - I have a hard time envisioning us watching that much of ANY genre, domestic, mainstream, foreign, independent, you name it.

Bollywood and Lagaan get two thumbs up in this household.

Friday Night Follies

We went to see Peter at the Interlude Cafe / Summit Studios. What a cozy little arts space! There is a small music shop with instrument rentals and used instruments, a cafe (which I suspect is primarily for parent's waiting for young'uns taking lessons) and a bunch of small studios. It felt very vibrant and alive. I saw a few kids coming and going from lessons, one had the score from WICKED with her. Music geeks. My people. Heh.

I also got to meet a friend of Peter's who has been stalking me. Not really - she just see's me around and tells Peter so he sort of knows I am still breathing even though he is incommunicado. Funny, small world thing.

Then, we got home (Zippy, me, MP, and AC) to find a message - my old friend RC (who I have not seen since Oct 2003) was in town and nearby in WH, as was another friend JK (have not seen her since 2000 or 2001. So I shamelessly abandoned my friends to go visit. It was good to see them, especially JK. While there, two other old friends (Jodi's former GF, and AP) came over which was weird - I had not seen AP in close to 10 years, she and her husband were particularly uncomfortable with my path.

Anyway, I stayed an hour or so, visited a little, had a beer. Came home around 11:30. Not sure if this is meaningful in terms of permanent re-engagement, but it was nice to be not excluded (which I have felt, over the years). These are friends of my ex-J, and I ceded them to her in the messy aftermath of the split, but it still felt a bit like I was cast off.

Who would have expected that going in to yesterday? Not I.....as K said "it feels lik e there is magic happening"

Last night's wind and rain and storminess brought in cold and clear - feels like winter out there. Not totally frigid, the high today is slated to be 48, although that might have come and gone already, but more seasonal anyway. This morning is gutter cleaning day - I am going to get the low hanging fruit, (er, muck) first, and then hopefully borrow a large ladder from across the street to get the upper gutters.