Thursday, October 30, 2014

Getting ready for The Big Easy, NOLA, and Cruise up the Mississippi River

A week from tomro, Friday, 11/7, I'm leaving home and hitching down to New Orleans Louisiana. I ain't never been there. In all my born days, and I ain't that young anymore, I've never seen that exciting city, home of the Mardi Gras and hard-hit by Katrina, when ole Georgie Pie Bush was the head of our country.

Oh, as a young lass, I did read Raintree County by one Ross Lockbridge, Jr. I loved the book, but poor ole Ross was dead as a doornail as the book climbed up the charts.

His wife wrote: 

Raintree movieposter.jpg

Wiki - "I walk past people," he confided to his wife, "and I wonder what they think." And, more ominously: "Whatever made me think I could get away with it?"[15] 

Here I am heading out to the Giant Food Store, traveling behind the gorgeous rear end of a white Porsche.

Errand Day began by meeting with Robin Franklin, Community Room Coordinator, to get rooms for our Saturday Programs at the Giant. We booked six rooms for 2015.

Robin and I always have nice chats. Didn't get a photo of Suzanne, who was also there. Helloooo Suzanne!

Then I picked up another batch of meds for my trip.  Will need meds and insulin for the 11 days I'm gone.

Wanted to buy a 'travel size' toothpaste but they didn't have any. Must I make an appt with my dentist so I can get one?

I believe Tom's just introduced this kid-sized tube.

Forty cents off at the Giant. They changed their method of payment, so I have to put on my thinking cap and READ and PUNCH BUTTONS in order to get gas.

A sign reads 'extra long gas hoses' so I pulled in at a rakish angle and filled up.

 The VW is front of me had a license plate that read UNDINE.

Undine (novella) - cover - Project Gutenberg eText 18752.jpg

 Read about the novella here. 

My dad told me that Audrey Hepburn did a play called Undine. Indeed she did. 

Look at the workout my mind gets when I do some simple errands.

Construction work on the way to

The Sox Lady in Furlong, PA.

The only problem with their website is it doesn't show the location of the place, so I had to call em up.

I told owner Diane that I hadn't been here in 10 years b/c the socks hold up so well.

I bought socks of many colors, like Joseph's coats of many colors in the Bible. None of them has elastic. Her brother makes the socks down the road. He doesn't sew up the toes; that's Diane's job.

There are many wonderful gifts on sale there, given to Diane by some friends. There were beautiful and inexpensive pocketbooks. Great gifts for Xmas, she said.

I told her I was not going to be tempted.

 When choosing Halloween candy last nite, I thought "Let me get things I would like to eat."

I wanna tell the little beggars, as my ex used to call them, take two things. One are pretzel rods. We have so many kids around here.

Scott and I had a scrumptious meal of scallops on a bed of whole wheat noodles. Get me my Novolog Pen!

Then I drove over to the Hatboro Union Library to hear Allan Heller talk about his latest book about Pennsylvania Cemeteries. Read about it here.  

Allan M Heller gives upbeat talk about the dearly departed in his cemetery books

Allan M Heller has always found cemeteries places of relaxation and serenity.

With a slide show at the Hatboro Union Library, he told fascinating stories about cemeteries he has known, documented in his four books, including the one below.

People poured into the library to hear him speak. Many lined up at the end to buy his books. Said Allan, "I want to come into the library with a big stack of books and leave with very few left."

 View from the rostrum.
Many people, including Martha Hunter, shown with husband Dave, came from our Saturday writers' group.

Allan also attends a group at the Union Library and those people came as well. So did the Mayor of Hatboro, Norman Hawkes, and his wife Dorrie.
Finally got to meet Allan's bro, Lawrence and his wife, who hail from Doylestown.

Allan put up a sign at Moreland Towers, in Hatboro, and many people arrived from there.

One woman Regina arrived in a wheelchair with bright white socks on. On my way home, I saw Regina rolling down the sidewalks of Hatboro. What courage!

Allan's mother, Cynthia Jones, bears a resemblance to her son. She and her husband live at Ann's Choice.

Cynthia's husband David Jones is a writer. He just published a guest column in the Courier Times. Love Letter to Megacorp from an Ardent Admirer.

Beatriz and Linda were there from our Saturday group. B came with friend Fran in the background. Nancy rolled the slides.

Since I didn't get a photo of the slides, lemme show a few of my own. Allan remarked there are two cemeteries in the little town of Hatboro - one is The Hatboro Cemetery, next to Stutz Candies - the other at the Hatboro Baptist Church. I'm quite familiar with them both.

I had mentioned there are quite a few gravestones of Muslims.

Allan mentioned the first black slave killed in the Civil War is buried in The Baptist Cemetery.

Famous architect Louis I Kahn was buried with wife Esther in a Jewish cemetery in the area. Here's his famous Norman Fisher House in Hatboro, PA.

The Union Library honors its centuries' old furniture.

Stepping into the room where Allan gave his talk is like entering the 18th century. 

Note the tall ceilings.

Kotecki Memorials

Allan mentioned that many of the grave stones were made by the Kotecki Family in Cleveland, Ohio. 

The family business goes back to 1896.

"But Daddy I don't wanna go into the family business."

"We'll talk about that later, son."

They made a huge cross high atop a hill that can be seen for miles.

   "Son, are you sure you don't wanna help your daddy build something like this?"

"Okay! It's better than Legos!"

Allan's mom, Cynthia, and I chatted a few moments after the talk. She and Dave live at Ann's Choice. She's on the Board of Directors at the Warminster Library.

I told her about the wonderful Poetry Program I attended there. They have a new librarian, she said, who schedules all these wonderful programs, esp. children's programs.

Surely they can't be better than Mr Jim at the Upper Moreland Library. They won an award last year.

  Allan Heller gets my award for a fun and entertaining talk.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Hello again Helene! The homeless woman and her dachsund

Helene and I sat next to each other for lunch today.

She expected me to be late, which I was not. She saved an old pic of me up in her apartment in Brookside Bldg, where I walked up six flights of stairs to get there.

The photo was taken on Bauman Drive in Maple Glen, where she used to live. The white spot on my nose is Eucerine cream which I applied in the car when we were stopped by flagmen/women.

Upon further viewing of this photo, the smaller Ruthie looks like a homunculus.  This is when twins are in utero but only one of them develops into a real baby. The other is, well, just some odd parts. I'd orig'ly read about this in Time mag when I was in the 11th grade.

No one would believe me. We'd thrown out the issue, so I had to go to the library

  Bertram Woods in Shaker Heights and leaf thru all the back issues.

Finally found it and took it to class, so I could show it to the guy sitting next to me in Biology Class.

I brought over my recent paintings which she really liked.

 Donna's Copper Watering Can

I wanted to paint something shapely. Donna thought she was gonna move in w/me, so she brot over a lot of her things.

Doubt she will.
 Purple Hubcaps
 Roses for Frankie, about a friend of mine who took his own life at age 45, a combination of intractable pain and a mental illness. It was not his first attempt, as is common.

I do love the coffee at Rydal Park. I just call it Egbert's. I always choose Decaf. That word alone conjures up the ability to do good work.

Helene told me about a radio show she listened to called RadioLab. The voices of Mel Blanc were on there. Mel was the voice of Bugs Bunny and numerous other characters. 

We sat next to a hard/hearing woman named Sarah and her aide.

Sarah agreed with Helene that the food was none too good. Sarah said her carrot soup was delicious.

Since I have diabetes, I only order and Salad and

oops!  Pecan Pie. The reason I did was b/c in my last short story - Moses, The Making of a Man - Moses eats some pecan pie - with ReddiWhip - with a small spoon.

I injected the maximum - 10 units - and will probly have to ride my bike for five hours to lower my sugar.

In the long hallways of Rydal Park are paintings by both residents and other artists. These pears are by Diana, whom we met on Helene's floor. We held the elevator open for her as she walked with a cane.

The woman in charge of choosing the paintings is a resident there named Perky Cohen. Guess who I'm gonna call up?


So, New Directions gets a call. It's from a Diana M, who's staying at a Motel 6 in King of Prussia.

She'd never heard of us.

She's 67 yo, has insulin-dependent diabetes, a history of 2 strokes, and has a 14-yo Dachsund who's she's never gonna abandon.

  I'll tell ya, Wikipedia has the best photos! When they email me, which they did last year, I'll make a donation. The NY Times admitted they have reliable info about Ebola.

I called Abington Memorial Hospital to ask about Diana and her insulin problem. She told me she lost her insulin pens in one of her moves. She's a New York resident but decided to move down here to be near her cousin, who wants nothing to do with her.

The nurse said she definitely needs her insulin, even though Diana has no food whatsoever. I didn't ask Diana how she is paying for her room, and she will not go to the hospital as she doesn't wanna leave Doxy alone. He does have food.

I'll tell you, if I were starving I'd certainly eat dog food.

So we do not know what to do with this woman! I asked two members of New Directions to look in on her. Will they?

Helene told me she was traumatized when she moved out of her house in Maple Glen. I told her I had gone to hear Mark Padmore at The Kimmel Center.

"We used to go there," she said.

"I remember you did. You and Aaron."

"No, it wasn't Aaron I went with."

So who did she go with? Possibly her nephew Gerry.

Image result for mark padmore

In fact, I wrote Mark Padmore and his wife Vicki Mortimor a note today, thanking him for hosting Sarah and myself at the Kimmel Center.

I used three thin Barnum and Bailey stamps.

Whatever 44 x three is, that's how much it costs to go to England. If you're a greeting card.

On my way out, I asked Solomon, a couple of questions, but first I said....

Solomon Grundy born on Monday
christened on Tuesday

He'd never heard of it.

You'll never guess where he's from.....

Liberia! His mom is there.

I also learned that my friend Betty Williams, who lived there, had died.  She was 93. When she moved, reluctantly, into Rydal at the behest of her late husband, she gave me a few very nice things I still have.

She was a terrific gardener.

These tiny saucers are from Morocco. She and Bill toured the world. She was also a painter.

On my way home. I was mad I had forgotten to bring Helene two sweet potatoes I had baked this morning. We were gonna eat them for lunch.

I drove all the way back and left them at the front desk for her.

  Helene said these were the sweetest sweet potatoes she has ever tasted!