Wednesday, October 22, 2014

What Sustains Me

This past weekend I went on a fun trip with a girl friend.  Super fun.  And to my favorite place in the US- Asheville, N.C.  Yet, still, it was hard to leave home and here's why~
It's very hard to get out of this bed each day!
I get homesick for my family whenever I'm away.  It doesn't matter how much fun I'm having, at the end of the day, I would always choose to be home.

I've been this way ever since I was a kid.  I couldn't do over nights and slumber parties, because as night would fall, I'd get a feeling in the pit of my stomach missing home.  Back then, I mainly just missed Mom.  But now, Fermin, Lucy and Ricky have taken that place.  Wherever it is they are, that's where I want to be.  Home.

Whenever Fermin and I go out of town, I miss Lucy and Ricky.  I've got the best friends that are also the best neighbors.  They take great care of our dogs when we are away, and they understand my longings. They send me photos and videos each day so I can see Lucy and Ricky are doing just fine without me.  It's really not about worrying about them, it's about me missing them.

And that feeling is only doubled when I'm also away from Fermin.

For this trip, Fermin sent me pictures of the pooches each day---

I didn't want Fermin to feel left out, so I asked him to send me a picture of his handsome face too- and this is what I got:
Antonio Banderas, circa 1980s
Well, close enough...

It's true what's been said. There's no place like home.

Monday, October 20, 2014

...Fake Happy Birthday To Me!

A few weeks ago, Fermin and I were eating at our local Mexican food restaurant, Mariano's.  It was another customer's birthday, so a big group of servers came out and sang the happy birthday song.  At the end of the song, a very rotund Mexican waiter held out a note for a very, v-e-r-y long time.  It was off key, but yet, still impressive and exciting based on it's loudness and longevity.  It was exciting and funny.

So the other night, Fermin met me and my friend, Kerri (that's right, I've got a friend, Kerri, who spells her name just like I do!) up at the same place.  Fermin sat down at the table a little after we had arrived, and when the strong-lunged, rotund Mexican waiter came to take his order, Fermin said, "I would like a Dos Equis, and I really want you to sing to me because, dammit, it's my birthday."  Of course, it wasn't Fermin's birthday, and we all just thought it was a little joke.

After we all finished eating, Fermin rushed off a little early to get home after a long day at work, while Kerri and I settled up our bill.

I started wondering why it was taking our waiter so long to get back to us... And then all of the sudden, a group of about 6 servers, plus our own waiter brought out a big sombrero and had a sopapilla in tow.  I felt sort of panicked, with no fake birthday boy in sight, so I quickly said to my waiter, "Just sing it to me!"  He put the hat on my head, they all sang their version of Happy Birthday, my waiter belted out the final v-e-r-y loud note and I gladly accepted the sopapilla on Fermin's behalf.
And that is how I got my fake birthday celebration.  It was funny.  But a little disappointing that Fermin had already left and missed the whole thing!

Afterwards, our check arrived.  I left a bigger than usual tip, thinking, "How nice that they brought us the dessert, sang the funny song, etc."  But the even funnier thing, upon further inspection of my bill after I paid it, was that they charged us $6 for the Happy Birthday Sopapilla. 


Friday, October 10, 2014

Armageddon In Dallas

I haven't written a single post in all of October, and we're nearly half way into the month already!  So what in the world is going on around here? Well, in a nutshell... Armageddon-here in Dallas.

First of all, in case you haven't heard- EBOLA.  The hospital here in Dallas,where most of my doctors have their practice, is the now infamous Presbyterian Hospital. That's where the first victim, Thomas Eric Duncan, died of Ebola here in the US just the other day.  Hotchkiss Elementary, was also in the news since it's where at least one of the kids he came in contact with while he was highly contagious goes to school.  It's our neighborhood school and is just one street over from where Fermin, Ricky, Lucy and I live. And the Ivy Apartments, where Duncan's host family lived, and where he stayed before he was admitted to Presbyterian Hositpital, is only about one mile from our neighborhood.  All of that is just a little too close to home.  I'm so sad for Mr. Duncan and his family, and I hope no one else was infected. 

Additionally, late last week, we had a huge storm that rolled thru Dallas.  It only lasted about 15 minutes but it packed a huge punch.  I took this picture from my bedroom window during the storm...
Lots of large tree branches on top of our electric lines
That was just the beginning.  You might notice in the above photo, the power lines from our house got pulled down.  So of course, we were lost electricity.  FOR FOUR FREAKIN' DAYS!  During the storm, I actually got a little nervous and asked Fermin if we should get in the bathtub at some point.  Not to bathe, but just to get to a safe spot.  We didn't, but I sure did consider it, I think for the first time in my life.

This was our view from our front porch looking out, after the storm...
For a minute I sorta felt like we lived in the woods, just not quite how I've always imagined it!
As you might guess, we could look out, but couldn't GET out our front.  This is what it looked like if you were looking at our house...
Where's Kerri?
And this was our backyard, once we made it outside. Which, of course, called for a beer!  Even me, the very rare beer drinker.
Fermin, hangin' loose. 
Our neighborhood got hit pretty hard.  Our house certainly didn't get the worst of it.  Here's a shot of the house that had a tree, or at least a huge portion of a tree, fall on the roof.  Notice the concrete driveway too!!!  CRAZY.  There were at least of handful of houses that had a similar situation going on.  Oh no!!

I've since had a few tree services out to bid the clean up work on all of our trees.  I found out I have a very sick, dying tree in my backyard, and the experts seemed to be in wonder that it didn't fall.  And thank GOD it didn't fall... It would have pulled down ALL the electric lines in my alley, and it sits directly next to my gas line- Yikes.  So until I get that tree down, I can't sleep or leave the house and not worry that Lucy and Ricky are safe.
Our Little Storm Troopers, Lucy and Ricky
I've hired a crew to come out, but they can't get to me until Saturday or possibly Monday.  There's just so many people in bad shape around here!  And we have storms forecasted beginning tonight.  I'm usually fearless of thunderstorms and in fact, welcome them.  But for now, my outlook has changed a little.

But besides trees that will now look ridiculous, and dented gutters, we were very lucky.  And my fingers are crossed that we will remain lucky.  And that this isn't, in fact, Armegeddon.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

I'll Be Singing This Weekend At The Oar House

7-10pm, both nights- (Friday and Saturday, Sept. 26 and 27th) This is my version of a very early heads up.  Hope to see you there~

305 Interstate 30

Rockwall, Texas  75087

Just a 25-minute drive from downtown Dallas and located next to Culpepper Steakhouse
From Dallas take I-30 East to the Horizon exit. The Oar House is on the right.
From East of Rockwall take I-30 West exit Ridge Road, stay on service road to Horizon, left on Horizon, right onto I-30 East service road.  The Oar House is on the left.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Good Morning! and Sharing the Road

Sometimes the cyclists and the runners at White Rock Lake, here in Dallas, can get on each other's nerves.  Although I'm a runner 90% of the time I'm out there, I'm also the occasional cyclist, so I can sort of understand
both sides.  Cyclist tend to zoom by us runners dangerously close at time, not seeming like they really want to share the road.  But, like I said, every now and then, I'm on the other side of things, and the runners sometimes run in groups of 3 or more, making it really difficult for cyclists to safely get around them.

When I'm running, lots of cyclist pass without a word, some ring bells of
warning, and others just yell out "Left!", as in "Passing on your left."  None of that is rude at all, but I don't think of it as all too friendly either.

But today on my run, a large group of cyclist, maybe 15 or more, passed me.  And as they did, the first one said, "Good morning, big group of us will be passing on your left", and then the next one said, "Hi!  Have a great day!"  and then about 10 more "Good Mornings!" to me followed.  I ended up saying my "hi's"and "good mornings" back, and it put a huge smile on my face because it was really funny.  Friendly cyclist overload! Every single one of them said something nice to me.  And what a difference it made.  I thought those cyclist were such friendly people just from that teeny little gesture.

Saying "Good Morning!" really took no additional time than "Left" does, but it was such a nicer way to get me to happily move over, to share the road with others needing more room.

In light of that awesome morning greeting I got earlier today, I'm putting up this video taken from "Singin' in the Rain"- with one of my favorites of all time, Gene Kelly.  Good Morning!