Friday, March 28, 2014

Of Rain, Disasters and miracles~~~~~

Dear Darklings,

Well we are finally getting some rain, how much of it will make a dent in our drought I don't know, but it feels so good to have it raining here in the Bay Area and Snowing in the Mountains.

At work when I looked out the window I enjoyed seeing it coming down wetting the streets, making grey and mysterious at certain points, of course cars driving fast and splashing rain water on people was not welcomed, but fortunately I had my trench coat and umbrella, and was prepared.

In the evening when the rain was coming down I spent time just looking out the living room window just mesmerized by it, feeling a certain sort of relaxation hearing it.  That lovely coziness that it brings.   Spring rain is different from Winter rain, its not as gloomy and when you step outside in the morning the air has such a fresh feeling.

Of course Belladonna and Weiner Dog beg to differ, "Its wets Mummy, ours tummys gets wets, no likes" but of course demands to go potty wins out.

And it seems that with the rain it has made my garden start to grow wild, the old damaged rose bushes that were moved seem to be doing well, and the new one's planted are flourishing, I'm happy to say.  So now it will be raining on and off through next week, are we going to have rain next month?  I really don't know, I hope so.

I got a phone call last night from our "haunted couple" yes it was they at the S.F. Opera House sale, she was looking for things to incorporate into various art works, she seems to be working on several art projects at the same time depending on where the mood takes her.  We've been invited to dinner tomorrow evening, which should prove to be interesting.  Doyle had to beg off, he's on assignment, so it will be Sis and I, I wonder what will develop?

Of late the news has been grim, the lost of that Malaysian Airplane with all passengers and crew, has developed into a major mystery, why did it go so off course?  Was there emotional problems between either the Pilot or Co-Pilot, why was the black box and transponder turned off?  Did one or the other kill their fellow crew member,  Doyle and I thought at first it was a terrorist act, but no one owned up to it, then I began thinking it crashed by accident, then I began thinking was it a suicide act?  If so why take over 200 lives with you?   To do that is insane. 

Sis has thoughts on that, and said it would not be unusual for someone in a certain frame of mind to do it that way.   Its heart breaking for the surviving family members.

And then that horrendous mud slide in Washington State killing possibly over a hundred people.  One family, by a miracle, was not home but when they returned discovered that their aunt who lived next door had died, they also thought their pet dog a Labrador had died but was discovered to have survived, with only a few cuts, very muddy and very hungry.  Even a 4 year old boy was discovered alive in all that cold wet mud.

But what really had my jaw dropping was seeing on the news that construction worker who was trapped on a balcony edge of a raging apartment building fire, he looked like he was going to get caught by the flames but the fire department managed to get a ladder to him and pull him off just before the upper part of the building collapsed.

It's on You Tube listed as Houston Apartment fire rescue, the original video was done by Karen Jones, all I can say it was a miracle.  

And its the 2nd large major building fire of a building under construction, within weeks of the one in S.F. and the Houston one.  My jaw just dropped to the ground at how close a call it was.

And now the crisis in the Ukraine,  I don't trust Putkin, its all leading to something worse or he wants something and is maneuvering for it.

I have not been posting as much as I would like of late but work both at work and at home has been keeping me very busy.   And I have to admit I'm having fun as well, a friend of mine Diane and I went to see "Young Frankenstein" playing at a local movie theater, part of their classic film series.

It was fun, funny and interesting at the same time, you see on the big screen all these little visual images that one misses when viewing it on Television.  Little details, that add to the story.  I understand that its Mel Brooks favorite film, I can understand why, it incorporates all the elements of the first 3 Frankenstein movies and it had all the equipment used in the original as well.  And I had not realized that the Frankenstein monster in this film had a zipper in his neck or that the Doctor had a thimble on his finger after he sewed the "Abby Normal" brain into his creation.  These are details one just does not catch.

I told Doyle this and his remark was "We need a bigger TV Screen"  Excuse me, I ask him.  And where are we going to put it?   Well, he says,  there's always my future "man-cave".  I gave him The Look, where he quickly decided to go to the kitchen to make us a cup of tea.  Smart move.

Now Easter is coming---whether its going to rain or not depends on, of course, the weather.  And that then will decide where to have Easter Dinner, my Brother asked if I care to have it at my home, and I have no problem with that, but, fortunately his dear wife said that the burden of cooking the entire dinner should not fall exclusively on my shoulders, so she will come over to help out, so between the 3 of us (Sis, sis-in-law, myself) we should be able to do a very nice dinner.

The children are too old for Easter Egg Hunts, but Coralline wants to come over early and my brother will distract the boys for a few hours while we get things ready. 

I posted in a much earlier post about how Gothic the Easter Season is.  With the fasting, and sacrificing and such.  I'm sure you Darklings can find it.  Sis would like to go to the special late night Easter Eve services, if we can find a church that is offering it.  I would love to, it is Gothic Ritual at its highest.

Now I must go, I promised to meet Sis at the Claremont for an early dinner.

Later Darklings

Monday, March 24, 2014

Of a New Computer and "Oh My Goodness Gracious!!!!" ~~~~~~

Well Darklings,

It's done, the new computer is installed and up and running, as a matter of fact I'm typing on it right now.

There was a bit of a delay, the extra 4 GB's of RAM that we wanted kept getting mixed up, the factory kept sending the wrong part, but the IT man got it squared away, seems their computer inventory made a mistake by one number. 

And OH MY GOODNESS!!!  What a difference, an entire new learning curve, I'm afraid to do too much to it, I don't want to mess it up by making the mistake of downloading the wrong thing. 

Maybe that's a sign of "old age"  the brain can't handle to much input.  But the screen is so "huge", I mean it fits my desk and everything but still it's like going from an old portable T.V. to a huge plasma screen.

And some things that were missing have come back. 

Because of the delay I haven't been posting, so much has happened but too much to list, except to say that much of the work that needed to be done has been done, neighbor's Oak tree, trimmed and healthy, fence fixed, bushes planted, car tuned, drapes cleaned, new computer, but still have to tweak a couple of things on it, like getting it registered.

Did manage to go to the Vintage Fashion Expo, and I did find some wonderful things, but it was so sad to see it reduced in size, not as many vendors, just a few years ago it took up the entire Expo hall, now just 1/2 of it.  I was told many vendors either have gone out of business or are doing it mostly on line and not traveling, the economy has affected many of them.

But we did go and have a late lunch at this place called "The Lab" in the historic Dog Patch area, parking was not easy, the S.F. Opera was also having their fund raising sale, it was unusual to see people dressed out of something out of the various Arabian Knights or Aladdin's Cave and some other very bizarre costumes.

We think we saw our "haunted couple" with what appeared to be armloads of things.

But "The Lab" had the most wonderful chocolate desserts to die for, a little goes a long way and their table nibbles just enough to kill the hunger although Doyle preferred steak and potatoes, he said to me "Elf Food?"  I told him to expand his palate, if he was still hungry when we got home I'd scramble some eggs for him.  But he was surprised finding himself filled up and even he went into delights over the chocolate

The entire neighborhood is one of the few locations that survived the 1906 earthquake and fire, many of the buildings went back to the 1880's and on Pacifica street some of these old homes on the back side had views of the wharf and the bay, not a beautiful view but still a view.  Doyle said he hated to think of the cost of some of those old houses, and they were not fancy places either, but old 1880 buildings or square type houses for working class families. 

Sunday Sis and I managed to do some shopping and then went over to our Brother's house for dinner.

Trisha, Coralline showed me the card and the Irish Blessing you sent, she had it put into a frame where she can see it,  she was just so happy to get it and hopes you like the one she sent you.
She selects her cards all by herself,  her Mother told me that when Coralline is selecting a card or two, she goes and gets a few things and then comes back to see how Coralline is doing. 

Did anyone watch "The Good Wife" last night??  I was so surprised by the plot twist.  And if you haven't seen it I'm not going to spoil what it was, but it does mean more growth and development for the show.  I'll be interested in seeing how it goes.

Now I must go, Sis will be late getting in and I need to pop the meat loaf (yes how mundane) into the oven.

Later Darklings

Thursday, March 13, 2014

AAArrrrrgggghhhhh!!!!!! and a Fire in San Francisco and Hannibal~~~

Well Darklings,

I am frustrated, extremely so.... my poor computer is ready for "The Boneyard", impossible to upgrade, parts of it are deteriorating, and not able to really replace so I'll have to buy a new system.  Except for my printer, which is only 6 months old none of the other components will work with a new system.

What it is is that my system is so old that with it working with internet explorer is total garbage, cranky-slow-frustrating.  So to do research my IT person installed Google Crome as a stop gap, BUT I have to go to internet explore to bring up my e-mail and to do any postings with because for some reason with my system Google Crome won't give me what I need to get into it, parts disappear.

So for research or to go to facebook its google chrome, but for e-mails and blogspot its internet explorer but to not make internet explorer my default.  Oy Vey!!!  Talk about a Rube Goldberg system.

But not having to go to work for the last few days (and tomorrow) Doyle and I have been looking for what I need, Oh decisions, decisions----I don't need anything fancy, but everything has Windows 8, which I'm told is really not a bad thing, but I'll be seeing a whole new screen to get use to.  Oh can my Model T-Ford Brain keep up with all the Ferrari's????  Well if I can crank it up a little.

But I've been looking a some tower types one even had 1Terra bit of ram----but do I need that much???

Until the IT sales person said that maybe I should look at an "all in one" save the cost of the monitor, don't have to "freak out" about wi-fi, eliminate the tower, don't have to buy a camera or speakers...HuuuHHHH????  Says I.

Well he showed it to us, and yes it's all in one, all built into the monitor, wired keyboard and mouse, camera in the frame and speakers same way, can increase RAM to 8 GB's from 4 GB's, no tower, with plug in's for UB and digital camera and my router and could convert to wi-fi, would install Microsoft word without installation costs, MacAfee virus protection, has DVD and CD player recorder, they will take out all the trial stuff and those aps I don't need, compatable with my current printer.

All for 1/2 what I was looking at.  Doyle was mentally hopping from one foot to the other like Homer Simpson (he's too dignified to do it in real time),  so I said "Wrap it up!"  But I have to wait a bit while they do what they have to do to it to make it completely mine, so I should have a new system by next monday at the latest.  So its a birthday present to myself, a bit early.  Well Doyle is going to chip in for half, the Darling.

So that is that....

And after all that excitment that Doyle went through the other Day, what happened was a horrible 5 alarm fire occured in China Basin area of San Francisco, this has been going through some serious redevelopment with apartments with busiensses on the ground floors,  one of the new buildings under construction (9 stories tall) caught fire, they are not sure what happened only the good thing is that it occured after all the construction workers had left for the day.

Doyle was visiting a client at his apartment around the block from where the new constrution was when they heard a commontion in the halls,  people evacuating from the west side of the building this was the side that was facing the fire,  Doyle encouraged his client to grab the important papers and they left the building, quickly and felt a tremendous heat,  Doyle saw the smoke rising over the buildings, he and his client walked East, away,  Doyle was glad he had taken a taxi to the client's place, what they saw was an inferno from hell,  as a matter of fact it was call the San Francisco Inferno.   At a safe distance Doyle and his client watched the fire, no loss of life, two firemen received minor injuries, one car was partially melted, the glass windows on the West side facing the fire buckled and cracked.  But damaged to the occupied apartments and the businesses was kept to a minimum, which itself is a miracle.

What the fire dept did was create a wall of water to prevent the heat and any embers from setting the near by buildings on fire, some embers did land on a roof top but was quickly put out. 

Everyone was evacuated at least over night including Doyle's client, Doyle called for a taxi and set his client up in a hotel for a few days until the O.K. was given for tennants to return,  the one's who live on the west side of the building will have to stay away for a few days while crews continue to put out hot spots still burning even as I type this, and also because they are demolishing the building and all it's melted metal scaffoling.  Doyle said that it was terrifying to see a wall of flames from that 9 story building, and the S.F. Fire Department did a heroic job getting everyone out and saving the already occupied buildings.

When he came home, I sat him down and gave him a bottle of one of his chilled Ale's and said "Rest, don't think, just rest."  

That day while he was escaping from a fire I was doing my jury duty stint,  Oh sitting there, waiting to be called to a court room, then going to the court room and waiting while everyone gets together, and then waiting to be called as a prospective juror, finally they came to me,  and asked me a few questions, one of which was "Do you own a gun"  "Yes"  I replied  "And I'm a member of the NRA"  ---- Dismissed and Thank you, you have done your Jury Service for the year....Thank yu, Thak yu vry much.... totally shot my day, it was a murder...would have loved to have been on that jury.   Oh well picked up some goodies at a very good Deli that I like and had an easy time for cooking, while waiting on the outcome of my ancient computer.

So my ancient computer has been cleaned up and will work for a little while, I'll retire it to do word processing until it finally gives up the ghost, maybe I'll have Coralline use it for her homework when she has to write out reports and essays, much better than waiting to use my computer.  Yes that would be a very good thing.

I don't know if any of you have been watching "Hannibal" but frankly its getting a little too grusome even for me,  I know I will never allow Coralline or her friends watch it, the convolutions and psychological aspects are to the point of beyond bizarre but just short of perverison or maybe not.  We record it to watch at a later date as Doyle likes "Blue Bloods", and then watch it early enough in an evening to discuss what its all about but after dinner for sure, of course we love "Blacklist", but it conflicts with "Castle" so that is recorded as well,  we enjoy the psychological aspects of situations but we tried "The Following" and found that it really wasn't going anywhere, and boring, why its still on is a mystery to us.  But "Hannibal"....I just do not have the words for it except that Gillian Anderson's character said it that he is too dangerous, only with the divider of the Televison screen can we be safe, but what of those in the outside world.  That is where "Hannibal" becomes disturbing.  For anyone.

Now I must go and prepare the salad for tonight's dinner.  The weather is a bit warm right now, the fake mulberry trees with their clusters of white flowers are in full bloom, to the point where the light breeze has the petals falling like fine snowflakes, in a spring wonderland,  Mom and Dad were married at the time the Snowball Trees or bushes would bloom and their petals would fall like snowflakes,  We have a picture of them in front of such a huge bush all the white blooms, surrounding and arching above them, a lovely wedding picture.  When I see the flowers blooming now I'm reminded of that, and feel a lightness of being.

Later Darklings

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Of Computer going off-line~~~~

Hello My Darklings,

Well sadly, I'm going to have to go off-line for a week at least,  my computer here at home has been acting up and my IT friend is going to go through it. 

It's either something that is failing (equivalent to the old T.V. picture Tube) or it just needs an upgrade of some sort.

So I'll not be able to pick up or send out e-mail or anything.  Pooh!!

And I won't use either Doyle's or my sisters computer systems as they need it for their work, and I don't want to take the chance of compromising them.

And  at work there is a whole new list of restrictions...Fugdesicle I say. 

So I will be out of touch for a while.... I had notices some problems, and thought a simple clean up would do it, but it appears to be more than that.  That is why I have not been posting of much lately.

And there is also the possiblity that I may be doing Jury Duty---I sincerely hope not, but I won't know until this evening when I call in, at least the court house will be local.  ***sigh***.

So until Anon... Happy St. Patrick's Day to come.

Later Darklings

Friday, March 7, 2014

Of "White Elephant Sales", Lent and a busy week~~~~

Hello My Darklings,

My goodness its been over a week since I last posted.   Well I confess work has kept me busy, both at my job and at home, so much so that I barely had a chance to even look over my blog.

We have been having rain, hooray!!!  But it still isn't enough to call off the call that we are in drought conditions, but my cisterns for the garden are getting nicely filled up, so with careful watering I think most of it not all my rooted plants will survive the coming summer.

So what mischief have I been getting into since last I posted???  Well just enough but not too much.

Sis, Doyle and I got up early to grab a good parking space for the Oakland Museums White Elephant Sale, with a folding stool we each took turns holding a place in line, while having hot coffee and donuts going back and forth between Doyles van and our holding spot, and yes it did rain and it was chilly.  But it was worth it,
Doyle found some things for his future "man-cave" so his man-cave can look like an old 1940's detective's office, we are eventually going to Urban Ore to find the approprate door as well.  Sis found a wonderful 1950's desk lamp that looks like a UFO flying disk,  and I found some wonderful vintage costume jewerly as well as a few hand bags, once I snared those I went to help Doyle and Sis.  Just wonderful selections, but you have to know what you are looking for and be prepared to move it right away, some people come with U-Haul Trucks, I did reconize several vintage clothing dealers, they pretty much know what they want and don't have to worry about sizes more about condition.   But Ohhh getting up so early in the morning, in the cold and the rain.  You have to be made of stern stuff.

We later grabed lunch then dropped Sis off at her house so she could meet with her contractor, then Doyle and I went to the Nursery to find some rose bushes, I have to admit it is a little late in the season but I found several in deep dark reds,  I was surprised to see a "Mr. Lincoln" but I wanted it and a couple of lovely climbing roses, which I'll use to help outline the gate way between my yard and my sisters yard.

Such Luck too.   Sunday I just rested and puttered around the house, Doyle treated us to dinner that evening.  Then my work week started and it has been insane, or as some young people would say "we've been slammed",  of course it didn't help that a person was found dead on the BART tracks late Tuesday night which affected my communte to work Wednesday but fortunately the "Powers that Be" were understanding provided that I stayed late to make up the time,  I compromise and told them "It's Ash Wednesday, I'm going to church, I'll make it up on Thursday"  and of course they gave in.

Tuesday if one is at Mardi Grah was "Fat Tuesday" and Doyle and I celebrated in our own way, we went to see a classic movie presentation "A Fistful of Dollars" with Clint Eastwood,  I have never seen the movie on the big screen, and such a difference!!!  It has greater impact visually which adds to the story line, the concept of the struggle for power in a small town where neither side is good, and the one in the middle that destroys the two factions is not really good either, but can be an emblem of rough justice.   The contrast of the two mothers is also very revealing.  Afterwards Doyle and I had to have a glass of wine at one of the local places with a bit of "bar food" and discuss seeing this film on the big screen.

But getting back to the person found dead on the BART tracks, not much is being told about this except that it's being investigated, but what is it about people and either BART or Train Tracks, of late there have been a lot of deaths in regards to this, and from what I've read it's just plain stupidity, not paying attention. 

Well I did stay late on Thursday and today I had a dental appointment this morning and all is well with my teeth.  The rain for now has stopped and the sun is shining, the plum trees are blooming, there are birds coming around, I've seen robins and blue jays, even humming birds, Sis and I have put out our humming bird feeders in locations where cats can't get to them.   And the squirrels are playing "chicken" with the cars and some of them are losing.

And no Darklings I did not watch the Oscars, I really didn't have any interest in it.

So now we are into Lent, Sis and I observe Lent with food restritions, I'm giving up wine and chocolate, no meat on Fridays,  and I'm taking next week off, Spring cleaning,  I'm having the drapes, curtains cleaned, the rugs have to be done a special way,  the cleaning service is going to be giving me a big bill after this is over, cleaning the stove and oven, and getting rid of things that we've bought and we'll never use. 

But it will feel good.

Later Darklings