Thursday, February 27, 2014

Of Rain, Rain and hopefully more Rain~~~~

Hello Darklings,

I LOVE the Rain, its so moody, gothic and noir, even the wet streets at night reflecting the neon adds to the "Gotham" feeling, the dark corners, and slithery sounds of tires squashing though puddles.

Ahhh yes I had to work late last night, rain and rain, fortunately Doyle came to pick me up so I would not have to depend upon public transportation, not that I'd mind but of late Doyle is becoming more protective, if the traffic of San Francisco wasn't so congested and people driving like idiots I would enjoy going though this city, but stupid drivers and pedestrians make it difficult to seek the simple pleasures of just enjoying the city at night, in the rain, in the dark.

Driving back over the Bay Bridge (I'm sorry Darklings but I refuse to call it the Willy Brown Bridge it is the Bay Bridge and that is that), but driving over the Bridge I love the grittyness of the older part of the span, I keep hearing that song so often associated with a Mickey Spillane movie, I think it's called "Harlem Nocturn",  as we drive over it,  and then we go through the Tunnel at Treasure Island and bam we are on a bridge that is something out of a Star Trek Movie----Oh Darklings the aspects and designs of the 21st Century hold no charm for me.  I find them boring, a sterile sameness that just kills the soul.

Oh for the designs of the old Chrysler and Empire State buildings of New York, or the Gothicness of old New Orleans,  it's like that song "little houses, made of ticky-tacky, little houses all the same", then it becomes such a relief to walk into my own home, away from all the 21st century "stuff".

Oh well if people are blind to such early 20th century beauty then they are truely blind. 

My Gardener was able to take care of the trees that needed to be trimmed and he is soaking the severly damaged rose bushes in buckets of water with lots of plant vitamin B to help with the transplanting into the cemetery area, hopefully they will take and come back.   I'm going to the nursery Saturday, rain or no rain to select some new bushes to put into that area along with seeing if there are some annuals that can be planted to take care of the squashed plantings, until I can put in something more "permanet".  Louise my cousin will be coming with me, she has in front of her cottage apartment two cement planters so she needs soil and some plantings for it to help cheer up her entrance way.  I know how plebian, how mundane, but not everyone can live a totally gothic/noir life although I'd like to try. 

It sort of makes me wonder about evil characters like the evil queen in Snow White or Malifacent in Sleeping Beauty, who does their laundry?  Do they have to put on makeup each morning?  Do they suffer from headaches?  They can't always be scheming on doing evil deeds all the time, I would think it would be tiring.

Oh well,  and my contractor came by while there was a break in the weather, to look over the damage to the fence and give me an estimate, not as bad as I feared and I'll see if my home owners insurance can cover it, I know my neighbor can't, poor thing,  she still is in a state over it but I've been reassuring her to not worry,  as a matter of fact I'm inviting her over for dinner again tonight,  I am concerned about her health and I want to do everything to relax her,  Belladonna and Weiner Dog have been amusing her which is good, but still since her family lives so far away Sacramento I think, I want her to be in a "good place and frame of mind".

The arborist will be coming next week to see about her tree, I do hope we don't have to have it cut down, it is still a magnficent tree.

And the weather man is saying more rain is coming, more and more---oh that means people will be in the rain during the opening of the Oakland Museum's White Elephant Sale this weekend, and I do so want to go,  well I guess it will be rain coats and umbrella's or something.  I love the white elephant sale, you never know what one will find.  The only problem is parking, such a bear, completely horrible, but we'll see.

One of my co-workers said the only way we can break the drought is if it rains at least every other day for March, April and May,  we can hope.   I'd hate to think of manditory water rationing,  at least my cisterns are catching as much of the rain water as possible so that should help the garden and greenhouse, I have to thank my late Great-Aunt for thinking so far ahead on that.

Ahh but now I think I'll go ahead and prepare the salad,  and bake the pie for dessert, it's all put together apples and cranberries, I came across the receipe in one of those little cook books, the pie crust is pre-made but I did have to peel and cut the apples.  I think it will be a good warm yet refreshing thing to have.

Later Darklings 

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Of "A Texas Chain Saw Massacare"~~~~

Alright Darklings,

I know----what do I mean by that....Well Doyle, Sis and I had been watching the news earlier this week and there was one story about trees that appear healthy but suddenly falling over or losing huge limbs without warning.

Part of it appears to be "stress" caused to the trees because of lack of water, part of it is because of soil conditions and the ground can no longer hold the tree, I could understand it if a tree gets too much water that can cause rot to form, and considering that last year with a lot of rain and then heavy windy conditions one of the largest trees near Lake Merritt fell over like a huge dinosaur, I can understand that.

I can also understand if there is too little rain trees either dropping limbs and in essence pruning itself because of lack of water.   And if the soil becomes too dry and roots die off for a whole tree to fall over, but we seem to be, according to the news broadcast losing a lot of trees espeically in the city.

Well that did set me to thinking,  I do have some trees in the back garden area that need to be trimmed and before they start leafing out too much, so I talked to my gardener and he agreed that it would be good to trim back unruly branches and shape the canopy a bit on them, do it right and the trimming could last for several years.

So I planned on having him over on Saturday, ........  well things took a sudden turn.

I have on one side of my property my Sisters house and she does not have any trees on her property, but on the other side is my neighbor who has a wonderful old Oak Tree, and I had been looking at that tree and thinking it might be a wise idea to talk to my neighbor who is elderly and baby sits Belladonna and Weiner Dog, for us to see about making arrangements to trim her Oak tree and I would pay for it, I knew she had limited income.

The other evening that was taken out of my hands when both Doyle and I woke up to the sound of a loud crack---crash!!!  Doyle got up grabbed his robe and flashlight and went out into the back yard where we heard the sounds----I quickly followed but made sure the dogs stayed put, Sis joined me as she decided to spend the night at my place since her bedroom was being painted at her place.

And what did our eyes see????  A huge branch of the old Oak Tree had come crashing down into the garden breaking the fence and crushing the plants----Oh dear!  Thought I,  We do have a problem, our neighbor came out on to her back porch and started crying out "My God!!!"  Well that did cause another neighbor to call 911 thinking that she was hurt.

So admist the flurry of police officers, a fire truck, ourselves calming our neighbor down and other neighbors coming over to see what was the excitment, and poor Brian holding the fort with the dogs, we were able to ascertain that no one was hurt, a fence was seriously broken, an Old Oak Tree had shedded one of it's large branches, some rose bushes were pruned in an extreme way and smaller plants crushed.  

I was very glad that one of the police officers was my "cute" friend, he was one of the first on scene and pretty much took charge until his sargent showed up and saw that things were under control.

The EMT's checked our elderly neighbors blood pressure and although elevated, not dangerously so, the police put up caution tape, and I persuaded our neighbor to come and stay the night at my house so she wouldn't feel frightened and alone and assured her that things will look much better in the morning.  The EMT's took her blood pressure again and it had come down to a more resonable level and she declined going to the ER. 

I said that if she didn't feel any better in the morning we would take her to the ER.   Morning had dawned and all of us with coffee cups in hand went to look at the damaged and although there was damaged, it was not insurmountable.  My gardener showed up ready to trim trees and instead found a fallen giant of a tree limb, his first remark to me was "I'm gonna need a bigger truck".  For some reason that scene in "Jaws" flashed through my mind of that sheriff saying to the 2 sailors "We're gonna need a bigger boat"  and I started laughing. 

So sitting in the patio drinking coffee, we formed a plan of action, my Gardner called his son who brought the bigger truck, and said that once the tree limb was removed could acertain what damage was done to the plants underneath,  I thought to myself "well this is the right time to buy new rose bushes", but my poor neighbor said that she didn't have the funds to cover any repairs or replacements, and I knew her financial situation pretty well, she received enough to cover general maintance and if she was pro-active could take care of things in advance  without it being too much and on any long term projects could save up for it, but this was not planned and it was a question of the health of the tree, was it rotted?  Would it have to be completely removed?  This she didn't have the funds for, and of course the fence.

So I decided to deal with it, and assured her to not worry about the fence, I would pay for replacing the broken section and see about the limb removal and my Gardener knew of a arborist who could check on the tree, I said I'd pay for it and if it needed removal I would attend to it.  After all she does baby sit our dogs even on a moment's notice.  And has been helpful in many other ways.

Once we were sure that my neighbor's health was in good shape, and with cotton balls for ear plugs for us and Doyle taking the dogs to the doggie day care so the sound of chain saws would not frighten them, the chain saws began their massacare on the Oak tree limb being careful in regards to the plants underneath.

Those saws chewed and chewed and even found a couple of spikes that the Oak tree had grown around, the good thing is that the saws were not damaged,  I was watching how they were working on it, for some reason why is it that things like chain saws, jack hammer and big heavy duty trucks see to attract little boys, the reason why I say this is that some of my neighbors came by with their little sons who wanted to see the chain saws do "their thing"and they watched from my porch "the show". 

I did have to turn on "Kitty Kat" incase one of the little darlings wandered away and one did and came running back talking frantically about the BIG KITTY that scared him, of course I showed his mother what he was talking about, she liked the idea and wondered if there was away to do something like that when those door-to-door solisitors showed up.  I thought that might be a good idea, that or a "fog horn" for  a door bell. 

Sis could not stay around for the show and Brian had to go to the City, so with Doyle recruited to watch the children on the porch, I took the mother's on an improtu tour of my home, one of the mother's remarked about how I decorate the house for Halloween and I smiled at her and said "It's always Halloween in my home".   I finished the tour in the formal parlour where the portrait of my Great Aunt looked down upon them, one of the ladies remembered her but only as an old lady I was asked if I had plans for the house after I died, I said I was thinking of a few things but that I didn't plan on dying any time soon.   

Then the show was over, the mother's gathered up their little ones who wanted to play in the garden but the mother's wisely thought that was going a little too far on imposing on me.

After the bits and pieces of the limbs and broken fence were removed, I could look at what was left of the carnage,  3 rose bushes would have to be replaced, but I thought to move the seriously damged ones over to the cemetery and plant them there if they revived, they revived, if they didn't well compost is always good.

Much of the smaller plants were crushed, so once the fence is replaced I'll get some annuals to fill in the spaces so there'd be some dark color, my neighbor was so sorry about it but I told her it was only Mother Nature doing what she does best---wreaking havoc where ever she goes. 

I put in a call to my contractor and he'll come by on Tuesday afternoon, my gardener will come by on monday to do what was orginally planned,  I think we'll have to wait until the following week to do any fence replacement, so that means the dynamic duo will have to do their 1's and 2's in the patio section of the yard.

And I invited my neighbor over for dinner that evening, I told her to not worry about cooking we'll have dinner, a little wine, a little laughter over what happened and all will be well, and it was.

Now if I can get the sound of chain saws out of my ears and mind.

Later Darklings

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Of "The President's Weekend and a Siren's Song"~~~~~

Hello Darklings,

Well I only worked 2/3's of my day today, which was a good thing,  everything has been blooming so much, the mock cherry blossoms, the fruit trees are trying to come out as well as other things that I have allergies that is driving my Sinuses into fits.

All I can do it take my allergy meds, at least it wasn't a cold.  And speaking of colds, Sis is on the mend, she has started seeing her clients and is feeling lots better.

Well with Sis being mostly bed bound but for good reason,  Coralline and I were left to our own devices, but all was not lost, Doyle took us to S.F. to help celebrate Chinese New years,  it was quiet a swirl of things to completely confuse the senses but for us very enjoyable.

Although Coralline was very content to have quiet time at home as well,  but we did manage to run errands and even take in some antique shops.   When the weather is warmer I hope to take her to the huge Antique Faire that is sponsored by Michaans Auctions on the first Sunday of the Month.  But we will have to get there early.  And I am planning on us taking in again the antique shops in Niles (I confess I do have a weakness for that place) followed by pizza and then going to the Silent Movies at the Essay Theatre that holds films every Saturday evening, I'll have to see what will be playing.

I surrendered to Coralline's blandisments to paint my nails lavender and I have to confess the Essie brand of nail polish holds up very well, and the color "Warm and Toasty Turtleneck" is very complementary for an Elder Goth's hand.

Coralline was very happy to receive a special Valentine's card from her "pen-pal" and she say's "Thank You" and to be sure to watch for something in the mail near St. Paddy's day.

I had fun with Ancestry. Com, Sis and I decided we would try and trace our ethnic roots to see where did our family originate,  now we knew where our Grandparents and Great-Grandparents were born, and when they came to the U.S.  but were were curious as to how much of an ethnic mixture we were.

So went sent away for our individual test packets, and followed instructions and we got our results which not surprisingly were exactly the same.

We were 94 percent European extraction with the first breakdown of 31% Italy and Greece, 29% Iberian Peninsula (Portugual and Spain), 25% Great Britian,  well the first two sections I could understand but Great Britian--with a clear indication of Ireland?  That puzzeled us. 

When I read that out loud Coralline said to us "Does that mean you can really say 'Kiss Me, I'm Irish' "?

Doyle whooped at that and said "Shur an begorra!"  and went off seeking an Irish Beer but came back with a shot of Irish wiskey.

Of the remaining 6% that was intriging,  3% was Russia, 1% Sandinavia and 2% was from North Africa the areas incompassing Morroco, Egypt and Algeria.   But in a way it did explain why my sister and I really don't quite resemble each other, I have very fair skin but very dark hair, and she has fair skin, blue eyes to my hazel, and her hair is naturally deep chestnut reddish (no freckles)  Our late oldest brother had fair skin, dark hair hazel eyes, while our youngest brother had a darker complection dark hair and a brown eyes and both brothers would be outdoors a lot and not tan the same way.  Our facial constuction is the same but the coloring always threw people off. 

Dad use to say that would happen, his grandmother was blond with blue eyes, so he always felt that the blue eyes would pop up.   And Mom use to say that her family originated that she knew, from the southern part of Portugual the area known as the Algarve, which would have been invaded by people from North Africa.

As far as we were concerned it only created a greater mystery. 

But our extended President's weekend was on the whole nice and quiet, which was good, sometimes it pays to have quiet moments to enjoy the simple things. 

Then Monday evening we were invaded by my brother's invading hoard, all tired, snow burned and happy from the skiing adventure, my brother complained about the snow driving conditions but was glad to have had chains to put on the tires, and that the tire chain businesses were doing great business,  the boys were happy and my sister-in-law was happy no one broke a leg.  "We can't afford that!"  she said.

Fortunately I had made a good size meatloaf and fed the invading hoard and we told them about our Ancestry DNA,  Monica thought that would be a good idea, since we already knew what my brothers background was, all she had to do was her's and see what turned up as the mix in the children "But we'll only do one child as this is expensive"  At $99 a test I'd say so.

Finally it was time for everyone to go, and with a hug (lots of hugs) and a wave, we saw them off.

That night I reclined on the couch in the family parlor and continued to look over and ponder the DNA results, Italy and Greece what were those Greek and Romans doing?  I thought Dad's family originated in France??  But his family's home town was in France but near the Italian Alps, that could explain it.  But where did Russia and Scandinavia come from and Great Britian??  I thought and thought and then I remembered, Mom did say that although the family originally came from the Algarve, they did settle for several generations in the Azores before immigrating to America, and the Azores was a melting pot there, a place where sailors and traveler's from different lands would stop and rest, and according to Grandma she did hint that they did find the women of the Azores to be very beautiful and very seductive, she hinted that was how she got grandpa to propose.....

Hmmmm I thought, what family sirens enticed some luckless sailors to their "doom" with their soft, warmly scented with tropical flowers arms?   It reminded me of that song from the musical "Leave it to Jane".

"Come to us, We've waited so long for you,

Ev'ry day we'll make a new song for you,

come, come, to us we love you so.

Leave behind the world and it's fretting,

and we will give you rest and forgetting.

So sang the Sirens ages and ages ago."

Hmmmmm come to think of it, I have done that myself.......

Later Darklings

Friday, February 14, 2014

Of "Valentine's Day and a Full Moon"~~~

Yes Darklings,

A beautiful Full Moon for Valentine's Day, depending upon if its raining, snowing or just miserable weather.

But Last night Sis and I looked out her bedroom window and saw the most magnificent full moon, framed with clouds, the moonlight doing a dance among the clouds, streets damp with the left over rain, the air washed and feeling fresh, the sky not black nor blue but a combination of both creating a velvety color.

Sis and I sat up last night, she is feeling a bit better, but she didn't want to come down stairs, just huddle in her bed, so I certainly wasn't going to force her, except to chase her into the shower and into a fresh nightgown,  while she was doing that I changed the sheets and pillow cases and re-made her bed, for which she was profoundly grateful.

So as a surprise I went into the upstairs linen closet and got out the card table that we use to sort and fold the linens,  and carried it into her bedroom, I lined it up with the window so we both could look outside from our chairs.  Covered it with a table cloth and sent up via the dumbwaiter (yes the house has a dumbwaiter but it has to be pulled up manully) the plateware, glasses and food and drink to the 2nd level.

From there using an old tea cart I wheeled dinner into her room, more won ton soup, but with a touch of sweet french bread, and to keep a settled stomach Ginger ale to drink.

We didn't have to worry about Doyle last night as he wasn't going to be home until very late.  Sis and I listened to music on the Sirus radio and talked, she was still feeling a bit weak but felt that by her first appointment next Tuesday she'd be up to par.  As we Elder Goths get older things like colds and flu's can really wreak havoc on our bodies, we don't bounce back as fast, so coddling and taking extra time to get well is important.

How she got the cold I'm not sure, I'm still well (I hope) but with all she and I have been doing it is possible her immune system got weakened.

Belladonna and Weiner Dog were having fun with this change of venue for dinner,  and to keep them busy I had their toys scattered about for them to play with.

It was fun looking out the window from our high vantage point and watching the neighborhood at night, watching people arrive home, and observing the various night time rituals,  the husband and wife across the street watch T.V. in their bedroom already in the P.J's  sometimes he watches and she reads, and vis-versa,  another family attempting to bar-b-que at night their dinner, someone wanted ribs, the scent wafted across the street and was making my mouth water,  as well as the dogs,  and someone having an arguement with their teenage daughter (not Marissa) and the daugther screaming that age old line "You're ruining My LIFE!!"  

When Sis heard that she shook her head and remarked to me "Do you think our parents ruined our lives?" and I turned to her and thought about it for a second or two rummaging through my mind.  Finally I said "No, they didn't, I mean as I remember if they said 'No' they explained why it was 'no' but we were also brought up to listen, and we have to remember how Matt taught us things as well."  I paused and then said "It was a different life style, a different time, we were brought up with different mores, we didn't have our lives interrupted with internet, cell phones, bullying tatics, and the types of Peer pressure that young people have today.  I think the parents of today have it much harder than the parents 50-60 years ago when we were growing up.  I think too the television programs that we had at the time also taught moral lessons, something that I really don't see much now a days, granted back then the moral lessons were simplified but how many young boys were influenced by, for example, "The Lone Ranger" code.  Children are forced to become adults before they can have fun being children."

Sis agreed with me and then said "I'm thinking of retiring from my line of work and putting more effort into my writting"  that surprised me I asked "Why?"  and she said "Oh maybe this cold really took it out of me, maybe its time to leave this business to younger people who understand better the pressures that people face in this 21st century world."  "You could become a consultant" I suggested, "You don't have to give it up right away, look you're still recovering, wait until you're feeling completely well and then do a reassesment."

Sis nodded and agreed to put it off until another time, our dinner was finished and I was putting things back on the cart when Sis said "Turn off the light and just look at the moon with me"  I angled the card table away and brought my chair closer and turned off the light, we had the moon light streaming in.

I was reminded how as children and young teens Sis and I would look out the window when there was beautiful full moon, our bedroom light turned off and how we'd quietly talk about things, different things and here we were doing it again.  Talking quietly, different things that would pop into our heads,  then Sis went to the window and completely opened it up and stuck her head out and howled at the Moom.

Well I wasn't going to let her do it alone, so I joined her sticking my head out and howling just as loud,  the dogs from up and down the block started in, I had no idea what started them off, I could hear Belladonna and Weiner Dog behind us howling as well, and we were doing it beautifully-------

Until Doyle pulled up in his car, he got out heard the whole thing up and down the block and Sis and I leading the pack, when we saw Doyle we did it even louder,  he looked up at us as we leaned out the window and yelled "Not Again!!!"   so with his hands on his hips he yelled "Children of the Night!!  SHUT THE HECK UP!!!"

And we did, the dogs did and giggling like school girls, Sis and I ducked back into the room and closed the window, collapsing into our chairs and laughing.  When Doyle climbed up the stairs we managed to get our giggles under control, he stepped into the room turned on the lights clucked a sound of disproval and said "A Full Moon, I should know better."  and he left the room as we started laughing again.

And now it's Valentine's Day,  I managed to get a red velvet cake for desert,  Sis said she felt up to coming down stairs,  and Coralline is going to be staying with us for the weekend, her Mom and Dad are going to drop her off in an hour as they and the boys go to one of the ski resorts,  the weather goes from cloudy to sunny, to cloudy and now sunny, now cloudy.  Coralline is hoping for my beef stew over rice which I have slowly cooking in the crock pot, Sis's appitite is coming back and looking forward to that as well.  It will be a quiet Valentine's weekend but Doyle has surprised us with a huge box of See's Candies and Roses,
His card to me reads thusly----Boy meets Girl.
                                               They like.
                                               They listen.
                                               They laugh.
                                               They love.
A simply perfect love story --- and it's ours.

I will never argue about that......Happy Valentine's Day Darklings.


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Of "Funeral Preperations"????~~~~

I know Darklings,

What a very strange heading!  But its true----but not for someone who just died, but more for getting things taken care of without having the family have the headache.

How this discussion came about was because of my sister,  poor thing.  This morning she was just so miserable, blowing her nose, sniffling, coughing, even with the cold meds.   I got her pretty much settled in Sunday, a large paper bag next to her bed to catch the used tissue, the night stand with a tray to hold the cough medicine and cough drops, a carafe of water and a glass and a large cup so she can gargal.

I managed to get ahold of her clients and get them rescheduled,  I'm so glad my Sister set's her calendar well ahead, espeically for any other events or confrences she wants to attend.

But today it was a dash to the drug store to get more supplies for her cold,  and get more soup and saltines, at least she can drink camomile tea, even peppermint tea is soothing to her. 

She was a bit awake this afternoon before her misery forced her to sleep again, so I had her eat, and I went over the adjusted schedule with her, I did warn her clients that they may get another phone call to re-adjust their schedules again and apologized for the problems.  Fortunately they were very understanding.  No one, but no one wants to catch a cold, nasty miserable thing that it is.

But just as we finished going over her appointment calendar she made an interesting and yet strange remark to me "Sis, have you thought about making funeral arrangements?"   I said to her that she was not going to die and I certainly did not have any plans.

But she went on and what she was saying that at our age as Elder Goths, we should have in advance funds set aside for funeral expenses and a directive of how we would like our funeral to be carried out, what type of coffin, what cemetery, what type of tombstone, what location for the burial plot, what kind of funeral service, who to do the preperations, anything speical to be done, etc., etc., etc.

As she was saying this I thought to myself she is so right, of course no one wants to think upon the ending of one's life, but I am of the belief that although our physical shell ends, that essence or soul energy continues, even if science has a hard time proving it, there have been annedotal stories about spirit survival.  Which is another reason why I like ghost stories.

I said to her that what she suggested was a good idea but it would be best for us to consider these things when one is in a more healthy frame of mind and body and we could plan our funeral arrangements.

Planning a funeral----most people would prefer to plan for a wedding or a birthday party even a baby shower, but planning for a funeral?   Well Darklings that is really not so morbid, but something an Elder Goth should think about.

Alright you say, how am I going to go about this?  Well one way is to pay for Whole Life Insurance, Not term life but Whole Life--there is a difference.   Term life is only for the term of the insurance, you cannot cash it in nor can you borrow on it, most of them only go to age 75 and then end, now some can be renewed but at a higher rate.   Whole Life however goes on until you die, with some companies the monthly rate remains the same, you can borrow against it, you can cash it in and receive back the amount of money you paid into it as premiums,  some companies hardly require a health exam such as Colonial Penn, some do require a physical exam---It does depend upon the company and at what age you are getting the insurance and of course the amount.

On Life insurance policies check with the company on them and any restrictions. 

But with a whole life insurance policy you have to set aside money to go into that to pay for funeral expenses,  but you cannot miss a payment or you forfit.

Now there is another way of doing it as long as you are strong willed enough to not dip into the fund, and that is to set up a savings account and put into it the exact amount of money that you would if you were paying for a premium,  either way Darklings the cost of a funeral traditionally done is at least $7000 on up, not including the cost of the grave and burial costs---that is just for embalming and coffin.  

Yes Darklings just like Weddings, a Funeral can be expensive, but the whole idea is to go the way you want to go, even Elizabeth Taylor use to tease that she'd be late to her own funeral and it was planned that her hearse carrying her coffin was late to her own funeral, who says you can't have fun after death.

I mean with a really great wake you can put the "Fun" into Funerals  (oh I know bad pun)
Now Doyle has his planned a long time ago---take him from the hospital to the cematorium, reduce him to ash and bury him in the back yard,  I said we'll have him on the fireplace mantle in a box or a jar and dust him off every week.  After all I think there are some restrictions now adays about being buried in one's back yard, even if we do have a pet cemetery in the back of mine. Hmmmm maybe I could.  (thinking about it)

It's what we did with Grandpa, he was cremated, even if at the time the Catholic Church wasn't thrilled with the idea, although they have come around to that,  Yes Grandma just could not bring herself to bury him, so she didn't embalm him just had him cremated and put into a nice wooden box with his name and dates of birth and death on it.  He sat on Grandma's fireplace mantle for years, Sis and I dusted him every weekend with an apology, we even apologized if it "tickled" him or made him sneeze, and we polished his box with Lemon Pledge.  It looked just lovely all polished up, espeically when the sun came through the living room windows and shined on it,  on occasion we had to use a metal polish to polish the metal plate on it that had his name.

For Christmas we had one of those little fake trees, with tiny glass colored balls glued to it's branches and we'd put it next to his box, or an Easter Bunny, no matter what Grandpa was included in all the celebrations,  for birthdays we had a little birthday hat to put on the box.  Grandma just looked at what we children would do and simply nodded her head in approval,  Dad would just shake his head and say to Mom "They're your children"  but I think they liked the fact that we accepted Grandpa that way.

One of my Uncles and his pinched mouth wife (he married late in life--never did like the woman) always complained about us children being disrespectful, but Grandma would tell them in no uncertain terms that she approved of it.

Of my two other Uncles, one would just shake his head but Uncle Mannie would smile and say "I think Grandpa is enjoying himself"  and would sneak a tiny shot glass of wine next to Grandpa's box, Sis and I swore that the wine in the glass would slowly disappear as if someone was sipping out of it.  Our Oldest brother thought so as well.

We buriend Grandpa with Grandma when she died and included all the information on the tombstone, together forever we thought and so right, Mom insisted that their names be entwined within two hearts over lapping, they were that much in love,  we did the same with Mom and Dad too when it was their time.

Things in terms of funerals did take a dark turn when our oldest brother died, but that was under horrible and tragic circumstances, with Grandpa well he became ill and he did talk about dieing, and as sad as it was it was expected and we recovered from it.   But my brother's was a long time in recovering for the whole family.

Now my other Grandpa and Grandma they had the traditional Catholic funeral,  with all the pomp and circumstance of the funeral rituals (Pre-Vatican 2) and although sad I loved the ritual in the old style Gothic Church, the rosary, the blessing, the prayers, the incense, well call me old-fashion but that is exactly how I'm going to have mine,  and the coffin I want will be black with silver colored handles and fixtures. I want the Pomp and Circumstance,  I know exactly where I want to be buried, and I want my headstone to be black polished stone, and although expensive I want it to include my picture on it,  I have a picture taken of me when I was younger, and I looked Sexsay!  And have on the tombstone the words "I-Be-Back"  shake them up a bit, none of that "In God's Care" stuff, oh no, I'm coming back in a new body and livin' life to the hilt and doing it all over again.

That's the only way to go.

As a matter of fact Darklings did you know you can buy your own coffin ahead of time at Cost Co??  Who says they don't sell everything---Hmmm coffin, wine and food for the wake....I think I'll plan my funeral.

Later Darklings

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Of "I'm Back--- Did You Miss Me?"~~~~~

Hello Darklings,

Well I know it has been a while since I last posted, but I have to confess, work has been horrendous,  staff members coming down sick, not with the flu but with colds of all things, 3 days feeling yucky, sore throats, runny noses,  the good thing is everyone got their flu shots.  Which is a good thing, it is frightening to hear that just in the Bay Area alone 35 deaths were flu related and any age too.

Well I've been saving things and my thoughts to flash drive to post later and its a good thing, sort of like a diary and just saving it all up to post now.

We finally have rain coming in!!!  The cisterns and the well that I have to water the garden is filling up just nicely, for a while there I had to use the drip irrigation to connect to the city water system to water the garden and greenhouse, but with the rains I turned it off for now  and if the rains keep doing what they're doing for the remaining part of winter and through Spring we should be in decent shape, not great shape but decent shape.  We've had several mild storms with some good soakers up north which is good and heading towards the Sierra's to build up the snow pack.

I was so worried about the hills, tinder dry just waiting to burn, but now if all goes well that will be pushed back to October.   There is several more storms going to rolling in every few days which will give us and the ground a bit of a breather to soak up the water.

Well The Bronco's lost the Superbowl, there were howls of disappointment up and down the neighborhood, but I didn't hear it I and Sis were at the Film Noir Festival taking in the last series of films.  And I was concerned about Coralline she does not like sports so I made arrangements for her to spend the day with her friend Marissa at house, her parents were happy about that, Marissa is not into sports either, but her brother and Dad were going to an Uncle's house for the game, so Marissa, her Mom and Coralline had fun spending the day together going to Niles and checking out the antique shops, and having pizza at Bronco Billy's which had the t.v. set set to the game but that was fine they were in for the pizza.

Coralline told me all about it over the phone Monday early evening and I told her about the movies.  She had a wonderful day looking at all the vintage things, and even asked me about some of the things, I teased her and asked "Do you think I'm old?"  and she replied "No, you're a collectible a really neat keeper!"  She laughed and said that because of my expertise espeically with vintage things she just wants to know more and she said she'd love to go to the Film Noir Festival next year, I said I'd have to see next year what they are going to offer, I didn't want her to see anything that her Mother might object to, but with the confidence of youth she said she was pretty sure her Mom wouldn't mind  "Mom says you're pretty good at corrupting young minds" and I said I hoped he was rolling her eyes because mine were.  But we left that subject on a "we'll see" note.

Doyle is complaining, T.V. he says, is going to be boring all re-runs on account of the Olympics, I have to be honest Darklings, the last time I watched the Olympics was in 1984 the Summer Olympics, after that I said to myself that it was fine for them to compete, and there is a certain national feeling but I just could not get into it.  And that was that.  So I told Doyle to get out his James Bond DVD's and watch that.

The news has been mostly about the drought here in California now its about the rain and snow, then about the Olympics and any controversy surrounding it, and who won gold medals.  Oh what I wouldn't give for a good murder mystery.   The other thing is about Turkey restricting to the people internet access, hmmm that seems to explain why, when I look at my stats I was getting a lot of viewers from Turkey----What!!  Turkey wants to restrict viewers from reading my blog about silly, strange and mundane things??? How obsured!

It's not like I'm going to convert people, what could I convert them about?  I'm just an 'old woman' with a different lifestyle and family life---it's like a soap opera at times, with different characters and strange people and mundane people and events both plain and strange.  With situations developing, resolving and sometimes just left hanging because it is impossible to resolve.  I shop, I work, I read, and eat, I enjoy wine, and doing fun things.  I have good happen, and I have bad happen.  It's my life as boring or as interesting as people may feel it to be. 

Like yesterday, it was raining, love the rain, wet a little chilly but its here Thank Goodness, however out into the cold and wet we went, Sis, myself, Belladonna and Wiener Dog,  it was time for the Dogs' check up,  "oh no mummies, we's don' wan to go dey dos strange ting's like someting ups ma butts"  Yes my little doggie darlings they are checking your tempeture which was fine, teeth fine, weight fine, shots up to date, weight opps Belladonna is getting a little pudgy, she's been stealing Wiener's food, we'll have to watch that, and nails are now trimmed.    The doggie babies get some treats for being good, and a visit to the doggie store for food and necessities,  Wiener chewed his sleeping bed we found stuffing all over the place and Wiener was the one who did the "shame face"  Belladonna was just fine "Who me?"  she looks "Nope not me, I'se fine".

And we needed to take care of some shopping as usual, the dogs were fine in the car, but Sis and I had to take a walk around T.J. Max and see what they had,  well I could not resist a pair of Bandolino heel's tan with black patent leather toes and heels,  and they has Elizabeth Taylor's perfume "Passion" had to have that I ran out, and Sis found her favorite Coach Bag,  she was just stunned to find it, and I know her, she wears her purses out to almost nothing. Except the Coach all leather bag last almost forever,  I have a deep dark green one that is a classic and it still looks new. 

The clothing was pretty much mundane, but there were some cute coffee mugs that we bought, we seem to go through mugs, the fine china cups are just fine we never break those, but the everyday coffee mugs seem to get a beating,  Doyle is espeically clumsey in the morning, if we go two weeks without him accidently knocking over his mug and breaking it, its a miracle.   Most of the time I buy the cheap ones at Safeway in their housewares dept. and he knows they're for him.

And then the grocery shopping.  Friday night Sis, and I, while we were doing laundry, went over the pantry, freezer and refrigerator to see what needed to be purchased,  on large dry goods like toliet paper and paper towels we go to Cost Co, with 3 sometimes 4 or 5 people in the house we tend to go through that very quickly,  Sis has a Cost Co business membership so she buys on her account and I re-imburse her, oh but it can be dangerous shopping at Cost Co, all the sample bars, but its a good thing I have a large freezer, except for small things that are quickly perishable like bread, we stock up pretty well.  And for parties, well that is my go-to store. 

And my goodness, this last time all those wines they were offering, good thing we got there early, and each of us had a basket, not that there were many interesting offerings, but I did spot a few that I remembered from my Wine trip a few years ago and picked up a few bottles.

I know Darklings, an elder Goth going to a Cost Co store?  It really doesn't fit, but when one lives an interesting life one has to stock up so one does not have to spend much time doing mundane things, and on heavy shopping days like that well its either a slow cooker dinner or ordering Chinese and having it delivered.  

I am so glad for flash drives I can save my thoughts and add things later with just only a littile effort, so for our final event.

I know for many what we've and I have done does not appear to be interesting---well today it was for a little while,  Sis and I went to the Art Deco Annual Membership party, it's free to members, non members pay $15, no-host bar and nibbles and entertainment, vintage attire admired but not necessary, well Sis and I did go dressed vintage and for the few hours we were there enjoying the period music and talking to people we were having a lovely time,  Doyle has been busy with his work and had to pass on it, and it was good, at the lovely old Elk's Building in San Francisco right near Union Square, we got there early to take the tour and they had done some important renovations the building just looks beautiful, I'm so glad we went.

It's like making sure to set aside time to see classic movies at the Paramount theater, if one wants to live a Vintage and Gothic life, one has to make time for it and I'm glad we did, but sometimes things force us to slow down.

After being there a few hours Sis looked very peaked, I asked her if anything is wrong and she said she didn't feel well, she did look a bit feverish and not wanting to take a chance we just came home, and it was a good thing as she appears to have a cold.   So I'm going to order a couple of orders of Won Ton Soup mostly for her, and we'll go from there, I told her to not worry about her vintage clothing I'd take care of it  and I'd call her clients and see about rescheduling for her, at least for the whole week, I've taken a look at her book and she does have openings so we'll see who I can fit in for her. 

At least I have tomorrow off so I can do more catch up for her appointments, but I'll have to at least take care of two days worth tonight.  And Doyle has just come home, he picked up the dogs at our sitters for me, and is again complaining about the television doldrums,  Oh wait a minute!!  He is now waving in front of my nose several DVD's that we had purchased but never got a chance to see, Steve Martin in "Dead Men don't wear Plaid",  "Northside 777", and several others, I told him to dig through the Library of our DVD's and see what others we have.

And now I'm going to check on Sis and start the phone calling,  Chinese Resteraunt first. 

Later Darklings

Monday, February 3, 2014

Of Film Noir 2014 Recovering~~~short post

Hello Darklings,

Oh, talk about sensory overload!!  But it was worth it!  Seeing all those wonderful films, develing into the minds and motives of people.  And everyone either dressed period style or even in regular dress, Wonderful!!!

Sis and I made some new friends, which we hope to meet for lunch soon, as I say Darklings, if you are into being Goth you MUST be into Film Noir. 

Saturday was all Day French films with the earliest from 1937, some were saying it was the earliest Film Noir but I still feel that the German silent Film "Spies" really is the earliest, but I'll have to see that film again, I only have it on video tape, and that may have deteriorated, I hope to find a DVD copy.

I'm back and work and have a lot to catch up on.  My sweet co-worker has brought me another cup of coffee to revive myself.

More Anon Darklings.