Thursday, September 13, 2018

WHY????? or maybe Why not???

I had to go to a satellite branch hospital today, to have blood drawn, per my cardiologist. While there, I got a message on MyChart (the hospital system's  on-line communications) that I owe $3.27. I immediately thought - WOW - how convenient that I am in the hospital now. I went to the front desk and asked if I could make the payment there, in cash, and the guy said "I'll see."  

A few minutes later, he told me he couldn't accept my payment there. I will never understand why! It is a satellite hospital of the same system as the larger hospital, and I should have been able to make a payment there. 

Does that make any sense to you!?

Sunday, September 09, 2018

Busy, busy month....

Scrabble, haircuts, lunch with a friend, hot dog dinner with a friend, movie, documentary, jazz/blues performance,  brunch with my old neighborhood friends, blood work, lunch with friends, yard sale, movie, flu shots, book club, echocardiogram, new neighborhood luncheon, scrabble, Lauren Kennedy performance, and the new neighbor movie with Mr. Rogers......just a few of the entries in September for me!

I have scrabble every Tuesday and a movie every Saturday....and I need to find time to schedule a pedicure for Jim and me.  Is it any wonder I don't have time to blog?  

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Steroid spinal Injection

One year ago today, I had a steroid injection in my spine, to numb the pain of three bulging discs. The doc said it may work, it may not or it may work for 3 months - or more. Each person responds differently. I had high hopes it would cure me of the excruciating pain I had had for 3 months or more in my shoulder, arm, elbow and hand. But I also knew it may not be successful. 

I post this today to pronounce my gratitude for Dr. Gloria Liu, M.D.,  of Duke University, as the shot was an instant success and it is still working to this day!  I hope if you are in need of such a cure, you will consider it and I hope it will work for you, too!! Thank God, it did for me. 

Sunday, August 26, 2018

One of my dearest friends died on Friday. I met Nancy in 1983, while volunteering at the NC Museum of Art. We became fast friends, even though she was 15 years older than I. I have seldom known a woman as dignified and elegant as Nancy. No profanities ever escaped her lips, and she was not one to speak ill of others. She was a good role model for anyone - especially me.
After our time as volunteers at NC Museum of Art,
we began getting together for lunch near our birthdays and at least one other time a year. In the early days, that included some shopping, but as Nancy aged, she was less and less interested in or capable of shopping.
Sometime in the 80's, Nancy married (having been an earlier widow) and I was privileged to do the flowers for the wedding. A few years later, I was asked to do funeral flowers for her husband; then wedding flower for her daughters. She was always so complimentary of my flowers....and I was happy to be able to do them for her.
I saw Nancy move from home to home, from her condo to Springmoor (a retirement home) and on to their assisted living section. I remember how inconsolable she was when her children took her car away (they made a good decision!)
I went in June to the hospital part of Springmoor to see her, after she'd had an aneurysm, last spring. It kept us from having her birthday lunch last May. I noticed how frail she was becoming, but I hoped she'd rally from it and be good as new.
I spoke to her on the phone in July, and I intended to try and see her then, but it was not to be. Rest in Peace, dearest Nancy. We will meet again some day, and meanwhile, I know you are enjoying those who had gone on before you. I loved you.

Monday, August 13, 2018

My 60th High School Reunion

With my daughter driving, I set off with fellow classmate Jane, to go to our 60th reunion. We graduated from Stonewall Jackson High School in Charleston, WV, in 1958 (an eon ago!) The traffic on Friday was horrible nearly all the way to Charleston, so we didn't get into town until 4 pm. We had to be at the first reunion event about 5:30, so it was rush-rush to get into our room, clean-up, change and get to the event site. 

Friday evening was spent getting reacquainted with other classmates, eating heavy hors d'oeuvres and talking about a subject that our class president had given us - mine was something on my bucket list. Other people had other subjects to cover; each spoke for about 2 minutes. BY the way, about 140 of us attended. We had 447 in our class, and 179 have passed away. We think it is amazing that we still have so many people participating, but it is a testament to the class president, David Hart, and the committee who plan the reunions. 

I had eaten a plate of food, and I still had a bite in my mouth when the class president (David) asked for me. My back was to him, so I threw up my hand and he asked me to come forward. I had no idea what was about to happen. David mentioned how much I used to love to shop at The Diamond, a 7-floor department store that was the pride of WV at the time. I also worked there, for a time, and I did love it, especially the shopping.  David handed me a shopping bag of boxes, and I discovered 2 old "Diamond" boxes - abeit empty. I had one at home, so now I have a collection!  

The rest of the evening, we listened to fellow classmates talk about whatever subject they had been given.  My story involved "going to Egypt to see the pyramids", a life-long dream of mine.  My husband was ready to sign on the dotted line for a tour of Egypt, back in the 80's, and the day after he made the decision we could go - the Egyptian army and police began shooting at each other and tourists were in the crossfire. . I don't remember the reason for it, but it changed my husband's mind about going to Egypt and I suppose I'll never get there. Boohoo.

On Saturday morning, a tour of "The Glenwood Mansion" was planned. This house sits across the street from our old school, but I never knew it existed, due to the fact that then, as now, it sits hidden behind thick vegetation. It was built by and inhabited by three families with easily recognizable names if you are from our area. I wanted to combine this post with photos, but there are too many pics and I may just post pics tomorrow. 

The history of the house, the house itself and the furnishings are interesting to an antique lover, as I am. The children's room was especially notable for a lovely iron crib and a beautiful Victorian child's bed, plus clothing and toys of the period.  

After the tour, I had lunch with a few bloggers I have known for a long time, and one woman with whom I am on Facebook, but had never met, until now.  Traci Dolan-Priestly and her husband Gary, Jennifer Blake Waggoner and Nancy Williams met me at Panera. Nancy had never met any of us, so I applaud her bravery at coming to meet us all. My daughter has always been convinced that my blogger friends are axe-murderers and, of course, nothing could be farther from the truth. We had an interesting time, and I enjoyed seeing the others interact.  
Too bad some of our other friends were unable to make it.  

After lunch, my daughter and I went to the Capitol Market, so I could buy half-runner green beans and white sweet-potatoes. They don't seem to be available in North Carolina, so I like to stock up when I am in Charleston. The market is always a treat for the eyes; many growers offer their flowers and plants for sale. I didn't get any pics of them this time, but there were plants I'd love to have brought home, such as lantana and lace-cap hydrangea, about 4 feet tall and well-bloomed.  But there was no room in the car for that!

Saturday night, we had a dinner/dance - although hardly anyone danced. After dinner, special entertainment was announced - an Elvis impersonator. He sang for about 45 minutes (a bit too long, IMO) and he was dressed in a bejeweled jumpsuit, a la Elvis.  Every few minutes or so, he would "lei" a woman - meaning he hung a silk lei around her neck, while serenading.  

Afterward, we spent a while talking to friends, taking photos, etc.  I was so exhausted after my busy day that I left early (unheard of for me) and went back to my hotel. I guess I am truly feeling my age. 

Sunday morning, we had breakfast with my birth-mother's granddaughter, whom we had met, but not had an opportunity to speak with at length. She is delightful and I remind her so much of my birth mom that she was moved to tears.  It was bitter-sweet and we were glad we had the time to meet with her. Then we picked-up Jane from another hotel and started south. 

We stopped at Tamarack to stretch our legs and feast our eyes on the wonderful arts and crafts. I bought a pair of earrings, but nothing else.  When we got into Greensboro, we stopped to see my granddaughter's new apartment. She is a student at UNC-G. 

We arrived home about 3:45 pm, tired, but none the worse for the wear. Jane and I decided we are ready to do it again in 2023, when we hope there will be a 65th reunion.  Come back tomorrow for photos (or maybe a few days).

Photos are coming eventually.

Sunday, August 05, 2018

Does No one Study Geography?

On Friday night, I attended a performance at our clubhouse by a Beatle's cover band. I have loved the Beatles since I first heard "I Want to Hold Your Hand" in 1964. I was supposed to sit with friends, but somehow that didn't happen. The seating was arranged, and I guess I forgot to mention who I wanted to sit with when I registered for the performance. Anyway.....

After the group started, a woman pulled her chair up next to me, and at intermission, we started talking. I asked her where she moved from, and she said NYC, via NJ, and that she had lived in many major cities; Boston, Dallas, San Francisco, Chicago, Cincinnati and DC. As she finished her list, she asked me where I am from. I answered "Charleston, WV" and her reply was "I'm not sure I know where that is."  I was so dumbstruck that I said nothing, all the while wanting to scream...."Were you never taught geography? Have you ever studied a map of the United States? Aren't you curious?

Much of the time, when I mention Charleston, West Virginia, people say "Is that near Richmond? Or "I've been to Charlottesville." It is infuriating to native West Virginians and a bit of an insult.  When I was in school, we studied geography quite a bit; I think it was 6th grade. We had to be able to name all the states from a map, studied the whole world geography (although it has changed quite a bit since I was in school.) 

There are so many people from the northern US who have no idea of (southern) geography that I wonder what they have been taught, if anything. If you happen to be one of them - do yourself a favor and get a US map to study. Learn the location of all 50 states so you won't look so uneducated the next time you are asked about one.

Thursday, August 02, 2018

Book Club, plus Odds and Ends

This pic was taken at book club on Tuesday, and had I known how that dress was going to emphasize my fat rolls, I might have changed position, or asked the photographer to cut the pic off in the middle. Fat rolls are fairly new to me; growing up I was so skinny that I could wear almost anything and get away with it. I looked good in everything except swim suits....."people called me slat legs." 
Book club was wonderful!  We had great food and a lively discussion about a book which deviated from our normal reading matter. The deviation was due to a heavy emphasis on religion (Christian religion) in the book. The story is about some people who lost family members in the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, at the Alfred Murrah Federal Building. It is essentially a love story; one of loss and learning how to live with that loss. Sometimes people blame God when disasters happen, whether natural or man-made. One character in this book did, and it almost cost him the love of his life. 

Nancy is known to be a consummate hostess, and that night was no exception. The table was set to perfection with beautiful china and silver, everything was immaculate and there were fresh flowers in every room. The foods would have been award-winning, had there been a contest:  a shrimp and orzo main dish, excellent potato salad, roasted asparagus (my offering), watermelon/feta salad (one of my favorites), marinated cucumbers, a squash casserole and for dessert:  home-made lemon meringue pie and home-made chocolate-chip cookies. A veritable feast for the mouth and the eyes!!

Now - the odds and ends:  

I went shopping today and my last stop was the grocery. I entered, got a cart and had gone 25 feet into the store when the power went out. Boy, was it ever dark! In a few seconds, the generators kicked in and part of the store was lit enough to see fairly well. Outside, there was a storm heavy enough to cause floods; with lightning and thunder galore.  Luckily, by the time I was finished shopping, the storm had let up enough that I could run to the car without getting totally drenched! ( thought)  Good thing I keep a few hand towels in the car; they came in handy. 

How is your weather this week?