Friday, June 2, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 153/212, 2023 - Friday

In my humble opinion, this is the proper way to foster better international relations. Just buy the Policia Municipal some ice cream, and everything will be fine. I understand the difference between the Policia and a bunch of South Korean Generals, but the idea and the follow through is all the same. It was kind of a busy day today, most of it was spent at Immigration, where I received my official exit permission, and my official entrance permission. If my residency is not completed by Monday, I will need to come back within sixty days to complete the process. Oh darn. I'll probably stay four or five days this first time coming back, but it will all be okay. Steve, Silvia, Mike and I went to a joint (Steve's words) to listen to some local music this afternoon. A place called Alive, and it was a lot of fun. We got back to the condo about six o'clock, watched the news, then headed out on an ice cream mission. We have seen the same cops on the corner almost every day since we have been here, and we always speak to them. We don't really know if they are there because this is a nice area, or because it is a bad area. I'm gonna go with the first one. Either way, tomorrow will be a less busy day.

Thursday, June 1, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 152/213, 2023 - Thursday

One Fish. Two Fish. Three Fish. Toe Fish! I swore to this guy that this photo would be solely (get it) for my own private use, and no one would ever see it. I lied. Mike told him it would be all over the Internet within the hour, and so here it is. I have wanted to experience this ever since the first time I saw it, but never have dared to do it. I may do it before I go back to Austin, I still have four days. Today was a day for some accomplishments, and some no-so-much accomplishments. Overall, it was a good day. We had power most of the day, only lost power for about thirty seconds this morning. There was a noon appointment, then a couple other things to get done, and again, it was a good day. We had rain for about a half-hour, and there is no rain forecast for the rest of our visit. We have a couple things on the list to do tomorrow, and then we will join Steve and Silvia to listen to some music tomorrow afternoon.

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Volume 15 - Day(s) 150 and 151/215 and 214, 2023 - Tuesday and Wednesday

Are y'all confused yet? Stay tuned. I had the first line of last night's journal entry all figured out. It was going to be All I need to do now is break my f*cking hip, but then the power went out, and I did not post anything. I fully expected the power to come back on overnight, but it didn't. It went off last night about 7:30, and came back on about 6 o'clock this afternoon. For ten minutes. Mike and I met my friend Steve and his girlfriend Silvia for dinner, and there was power there when we arrived. So far, so good. After we finished dinner, we were just sitting there talking, and the power went off at the restaurant. It was only off for three or four minutes, but I felt that was a good sign...that power was back on all across the city. Not sure about that, but when we got back to the condo, the power was back on, and so far, all is good. Yesterday, there was a miniature hurricane in Playa del Carmen, not my words, words of locals here. Lots of the sidewalks are stamped concrete, with a 'painted' finish on it, which is very slippery. No one seems to care about rain or thunder or lightning here, so we were out walking to meet friends, and I (several times) almost slipped and fell on the wet sidewalks. I didn't, but there were a couple close calls. This afternoon, there was another HEAVY rainstorm, lots of thunder and lots of lightning, and let me tell you, the thunder here is REALLY impressive. I like it. Loud and prolonged! But anyway, all is good now, the power is on, the air conditioning is working, and I am a happy man. Don't forget, I am the luckiest man in the world! This photo was after the heaviest part of the storm last night...the sky was VERY interesting. 

Monday, May 29, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 148/217, 2023 - Monday (Memorial Day in the US)

Today was a pretty busy day, and I am not sure if too much was accomplished, if anything at all. It started with a short walk to (in a little bit of a drizzle) to the 7-11 for coffee, and then we headed to the immigration attorney to see about getting my residency. Not sure if anything was accomplished there or not, but I may know in a week or so. We walked back to the condo, about a couple miles, and looked at stuff along the street, bought nothing. Back at the condo, we both went down for naps, and then we walked to Walmart, where I spent $145US on stuff. Just like at home, I spent $145 and have nothing to show for it. Tomorrow we are going back to Selecta to see what they have that I can't live without, and it is a LOT closer than Walmart. Tonight we went and had dinner, I had a brisket sandwich and Mike had something with chicken in it. It is getting ready to storm here, there have been lots of really brilliant lightning displays, but none that I have been able to capture to accompany this journal entry. Great lightning, lots of thunder, but so far there has only been a sprinkle of rain. More tomorrow.

Sunday, May 28, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 148/217, 2023 - Sunday

Okay, today was kind of a busy day...I got all my chores done this morning, and headed off to the airport. I got there about 9:30, and the flight was delayed thirty minutes. I guess it is important that airplanes have pilots before they take off. I got to Cancun about 2:30, and Mike, my bestie from Florida, arrived about an hour before I did. We rendezvoused at baggage claim, then through immigration. I made one big suit case was so full, I joked with the immigration peeps that my bag would explode if they opened it. KIDDING. Nothing terrible happened, I was not carted off to jail or anything, but it was one of those times (I have many of those) that, as I could see the words coming out of my mouth, I was wishing I could suck them back it. It was all good. We got on the transport that I had reserved, and got to the condo, unpacked and then went to the grocery. Grocery shopping in Playa was really fun, mainly because we have no idea what anything is. I recognized the bananas and the wine, but everything else was foreign. Get it? We brought the groceries back to the condo and then we headed off to dinner. Alisha and Reuben and I ate at this place when we were here a couple months ago, and this time I ordered the small pizza. I have eaten one slice so far, and I expect I will be eating this pizza for lunch while we are here. Mike brought his home too, but he ate two slices of his. On the way back to the condo, we stopped for a few minutes at the beach, and now we are just chilling out. Literally. I am getting pretty good at converting dollars to pesos, fahrenheit to centigrade, square meters to square feet, kilometers to miles. No problem. 

Saturday, May 27, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 147/218, 2023 - Saturday

I had a pretty busy day today, but I got everything done that was on my list. It all started off with a nice walk with Richard and Paul. When I got home, I did laundry, then took the girls to the beautiful parlor. There was a lot of stuff in between, including cleaning the stucco under the front porch, where the barn swallows have been hanging out. Not nesting, just hanging out and pooping. What a mess. But, it is all cleaned now, and I am on a mission to keep them from coming back. I am not too sure who is going to win this challenge, but I will do my best. My immediate tactic is to keep the porch light on for a while to try and keep them from hanging out in the dark. Who knows if my psychology will work or not. Tonight was the first house concert of the third season. Bluegrass night. It was fun, and we had quite a few neighbors hanging out. It was NOT supposed to rain at all today, but at about five o'clock, it started raining, but it was over by 6:30, so the concert went on with no problems. All was good, and now it is time to go to sleep.

Friday, May 26, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 146/219, 2023 - Friday

Okay, it is Friday, and the beginning of a long weekend, and I am ready for it. Our walk was great this morning, we saw a couple Mexican Whistling Tree Ducks, and they are absolutely beautiful. I will (maybe) share a photo with you in tomorrows post. I had lots of stuff to get done today, it is (kind of) the end of the month, and that is a busy time for property management. I also had a few errands to get taken care of on the way home, and I got all that accomplished. Tonight was our neighbors dinner, and we had reservations for 17. I'm not sure how many attended, and it was held at Mulligan's, which is a restaurant on one of the Sun City Golf Courses. I had liver and onions, and it was very good. I have not had liver and onions in many years, and I thought it was an interesting item to be included on the menu. Liver and onions, lumpy mashed potatoes, and sweet potato fries. It could not have been better. After dinner, a bunch of us went to Dos Mangos Paleteria for ice cream. A perfect ending to the day. Now, it is time for bed, and I will see you all tomorrow.

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 145/220, 2023 - Thursday

It's almost here. FRIDAY! Our walk was good this morning, and I headed (headed? Is that a word?) in to the office a little bit early, because I had a noon appointment that was expected to take a while. All was good in the office, except the telephone parts. We have been having issues with ONE phone extension, and no one can seem to agree with what the exact problem is. A broke phone or not a broke phone? A network problem or not a network problem. A broke phone makes the most sense, since there is only one phone affected. A network issues does not make sense, since there is only one phone that is affected. See there, how I used the words 'sense' and 'since' two times in a row, in two different sentences? Pay attention! My noon appointment was at a Broker Open House, it was fun, and I had a great time visiting with Benson and Maggie. While I was there, I did have an opportunity to ponder my future world travels, and the glasses made the ponderance even easier.

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 144/221, 2023 - Wednesday

I fear the photo accompanying this journal entry does not really convey the beauty of the clouds that adorned our morning walk. We had a pretty good storm overnight, the rain woke me up, but I did not really notice any lightning or thunder. Apparently there was a lot of that, but I slept through it all. Richard and Paul and I walked this morning, and it was nice, the air was fresh and clean. I took my time getting ready to go into the office, and traffic was not nearly as difficult as yesterday. I stopped on the way in at a local Walgreen's and left empty handed. I stopped at a CVS on the way home this afternoon, and waked out with what I was looking for. In between those two events, I got a good bit of work done at the office, and laid the groundwork for tomorrow and Friday. It is only Wednesday, but I am already looking forward to the weekend. And it will be a long weekend at that!

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 143/222, 2023 - Tuesday

This was the worst day for commuting that I have experienced in several years...maybe even worse than the pre-pandemic days. I had breakfast with the ROMEOs this morning, and I had an 11 o'clock appointment in Austin. My intention was to get in to the office for a few minutes, and then go to my 11 o'clock. That did not happen. I left breakfast before anyone else, and not long after I got on the highway, traffic backed up. There was a wreck, and lots of damage but not any injuries likely. That traffic opened up, and in less than five minutes, traffic stopped again. And it did not move. Just stopped. There were three out of four lanes shut down, and it was crazy. I am pretty sure traffic was backed up to Dallas because of it. A nightmare. Whatever. Our walk this morning was good, I was late to my 11 o'clock appointment, and I got in to the office about 12:30. We are going through a transition in the office, and there is a certain amount of chaos going on, but it will all settle down in a couple weeks. Tomorrow will be a better day, I will most likely get in to the office at a reasonable time, and I have a 2 o'clock zoom meeting. No sweat. This little bunny was seen at the pocket park in the neighborhood during our walk this morning. Cute!

Monday, May 22, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 142/223, 2023 - Monday

OBOYOBOYOBOY! If you know me at all, you know I am and always have been crazy about cars. If it was up to me, everyone would have a new car every fifteen minutes of so. I cannot recall, likely due to my advanced age, the number of cars I have owned in my lifetime. Some were better than others, some were just sleds, but they were cars and they were all different. I think, although I am not sure, that this is about a 1966 or so Chrysler Imperial. One of my favorite cars of all time is the 1959, with the saturn tail lights. Really cool. I tend to stop for old car photo opportunities, and you are the beneficiaries of that. It was good walking weather today, and then I was off to the office. Our little outside storage shed was vandalized last night, there was nothing in it by real estate signs and stuff like that, but they made a mess. The video shows a guy in a red SUV about 1:45AM, and I have no idea what the purpose was, but I may just drive the neighborhood tomorrow to see if I can locate the car, and then call the gendarmes. Enjoy the Imperial photo, let me know if you track down the actual year...

Sunday, May 21, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 141/224, 2023 - Sunday

This was truly a lazy day. I got up and met Paul and Richard for a walk, and that was good. When I got home, I piled up in the big chair with the girls, and watch Sunday Morning. I can neither confirm or deny that I took a nap, but it was not for long if I did. I did a few little things around the house, nothing big, and I looked to see if there were any estate sales. There were three, but I was not particularly motivated to go, so I did not. Eventually, I made it to Target, bout three t-shirts and food for the girls, and got gas in the little white car. Even though the day was grey and cloudy, the temperature was quite nice, and I got all the outside plants watered. The Piglet got her face washed this afternoon, and she is not at all happy about the process, but I really think she feels better after it is over. I also did an engineering masterpiece trying to keep the swallows from nesting over the front porch, and I think I may have finally thwarted them. Maybe not, but nobody can say I have not tried. Later this afternoon, I went down to visit with Jimmie and Linda, and returned what was left of the shiny swallow deterring reflective scare tape. A masterpiece I tell you! It wa nice visiting with them again, and now I am getting ready for the week to come. Life is good, all is good, we are all lucky people.

Saturday, May 20, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 140/225, 2023 - Saturday

Today was a really fun kind of day. There was no walk this morning, we were all preparing for the community wide garage sale, that was not tremendously successful, but I personally was able to get rid of a bunch of stuff, and if you were looking, you would not really know that I got rid of anything. The garage sale started at 8 o'clock, and my first customers hit me at (probably) 7:15 or so. I stuck it out until the pitter end, and I probably sold about $150 worth of stuff, and what did not sell was sent to Habitat for Humanity and Goodwill. I am happy with it all, to be honest. After the sale, I took a little bit of a nap, and then I got ready to go to dinner at Teri's house; Me, Teri, her dad Jack, Jack's girlfriend Floria, and Teri's uncle and Jack's brother-in-law Jim. I don't know about everybody else, but I had a great time, and laughed a lot. After dinner, I stopped at Jimmy and Linda's and had another glass of wine, and caught them up on all the local gossip. They don't call em Gladys for nothing, and I wear that mantle proudly. Tomorrow is a pretty blank page, but I will do my best to make it another fun day. Stay tuned. Photo: Jim, Floria, Teri, Jack, and moi.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 139/226, 2023 - Friday

To be perfectly honest, this was a pretty good day. I did half a walk this morning, because I needed to be in Austin for an early appointment. I got to my 9 o'clock appointment at 8:30, and the man I was meeting with was already there. I like that a lot! The meeting was over before it was even scheduled to be starting, another win! Three tasks were completed successfully before 11 o'clock, and that was quite an accomplishment. I headed off for an 11:30 meeting, and found out the meeting had been rescheduled until noon. I got the message, but I thought it was just a mistake, because that meeting is ALWAYS at 11:30. Not so fast, Batman! I got back to the office about 1:30, got a little bit more stuff done, scheduled another appointment for Monday (that makes two), and headed home about 2:30. Maybe later, maybe earlier, it was hours ago and I really can't remember. There is a subdivision wide garage sale tomorrow, and I just hauled a bunch of (mostly Christmas decorations) stuff out of the attic, with the help of Andres. I may go back up in the attic tomorrow morning just to see if there is more stuff I can get rid of. I am in that kind of mood. It is supposed to rain and maybe hail tonight, and I hope it does, I like it when it storms overnight.

Thursday, May 18, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 138/227, 2023 - Thursday

Richard joined us on the walk this morning, and it was good to have the group back in place. I took this iris photo while on the walk, and I am particularly pleased to see the dew drops on the purple background of the iris. It has been extra humid lately, with warm days and cool overnights, making for a plethora of dew on the grass and windshields of cars not garaged overnight. I had a 9 o'clock zoom this morning, and headed in to the office about 9:45. Then another couple appointments, and then home about 4:30. Tonight ws book club night, and that was good as always. We chose the next book, which was actually recommended by my friend Janis, Dear Edward, by Ann Napolitano, about a 12 year old kid that is the only survivor of a plane crash. I'll let you know more after I get started. I have a nine o'clock again tomorrow, but it is in Austin, so I will need to leave a little earlier than usual, which means also that I need to wrap this up and take the girls out and go to sleep.

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 137/228 - Wednesday

Not a bad day...Richard overslept so he did not walk, but he reports that his foot is doing much better, so we are hoping to see him in the morning. Carrie is heading to Hawaii, so I was in the office a little bit early. Today is Tosalyn's last day, and we all wish her well, and hope everything in her future is great. We will miss her. I left the office about 2 this afternoon, and stopped at Costco on the way home. I got really important stuff like cheese and crackers, so I am pretty well set for the next two weeks, at least. It is a pretty typical spring/summer cusp day in central Texas, and it is supposed to rain again Friday afternoon into the weekend. I have a nine o'clock zoom call in the morning, and I will take that from home, then head off to the office. It is really pretty quiet in the offie these days, and I am happy for that. Tomorrow is book club night, and I am hosting, so I bought some EXTRA cheese and crackers for that. The book this month was one that I read about a year ago, and I thought it was pretty good then...I am now searching for a new, good book to read. Any suggestions?


Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 136/229, 2023 - Tuesday

It's only Tuesday, and it feels like it has been a long week already. Richard is still having foot problems, so Paul and I did our walk this morning. I was a nice temperature, but the humidity (and maybe the stupidity) is really high, and not supposed to decrease until Saturday. We did, however, all make it to the ROMEO breakfast, a tradition that is really a lot of fun. Four cranky old men, trying to solve the problems of the universe while multi-tasking over eggs and pancakes. We can usually solve all the problems even before the bring the second pot of coffee! After that, it was on to the office. We had an office lunch to show our gratitude for Tosalyn, whose last day is tomorrow. She has found another job that will let her work 100% from home, so that is a big win. Today is Margie's birthday (HAPPY BIRTHDAY MARGE), and Richard invited me to join them at City Post Restaurant in Georgetown for small plates and bites. It was my first time there, and to be honest, I don't think I had ever noticed the old Georgetown Post Office. It is a beautiful building, and the reviews I have read are all very favorable. I will have to try it again sometime. I think I have been successful in finding a pet sitter for the future. It is not as easy as you might think, but I believe I have found a good, reliable person! Here is a picture of me, Margie and Richard, after our night out!

Monday, May 15, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 135/230, 2023 - Monday

Not bad for a Monday. Richard's foot was still giving him problems, so he was not able to walk. Paul and I walked, and we made it about four minutes ahead of schedule. I made it in to the office relatively early, because I am expecting it to be a pretty busy week. I was off to the Austin Board by about 1:15 this afternoon, for a 2 o'clock function. It was the annual Women's Council of REALTORS® Cake Auction to benefit TREPAC. I am not sure how much money was raised today, but it was somewhere around $20K. Always a great event. This photo is of me (I am the handsome one) and my friend Gay Puckett (she is the pretty one). Gay always participates generously in this event. THANK YOU! I am working (again) on finding a pet sitter for the girls, and I may have found one. I will know for sure tomorrow or the next day. We got a little bit more rain today, that will put us at a little over 3.5" for the month, which ain't too shabby. It is going to be hot and humid the rest of the week, and we are expecting a cold front for the weekend. Bring it on!

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 134/231, 2023 - Sunday (Mother's Day)

Once again, I have no idea if these are Indian Paintbrush or Indian Blankets. I should pay more attention. Richard only walked a few feet with us this morning, he hurt his foot, and has no idea how it happened. Paul and I continued and had a good walk. There was no rain, and we saw these blooms not far from the Amenity Center. I am feeling much better, I slept all through the night last night, and I don't think I woke up coughing even once. I have coughed some during the day, but nothing at all like yesterday. I finished the cough medicine that was prescribed in 2009, and now I am working on one of the two bottles that were prescribed in 2017. I did get to the grocery store late this morning, and I am glad for that. I also did a few things around the house today, and got all the clocks set and wound. Teri and I went to a movie this afternoon, and I was pretty disappointed with it. It is a distinct possibility that I am just old and cranky, and not a good movie-goer. Period. It did rain today, though, over ah inch-and-a-half. That make a little over 3 inches in the last three days. WHOOPEE!

Saturday, May 13, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 133/232, 2023 - Saturday

I came back from my DC trip with a sore throat. Now I am coughing and sneezing. I did a Covid test yesterday, and it was negative, taken my temperature a couple times today, and it is normal (for me). The only time I went out of the house today was with the dogs in the back yard, and to go check the mail. Otherwise, I slept away most of the day. I think sleep is a great healer. I really don't feel bad, just the sore throat, coughing, sneezing and runny nose. I just took some prescription cough medicine, it was filled in 2009, I am not sure if cough medicine has an expiration date or not. The girls were happy to sleep the day away with me, too, and there were no complaints from them. There was no walk this morning, it was raining when we would have walked. My gauge registered 1.22" of rain overnight, and there may be more overnight tonight. I can't keep up. I am going to a movie with Teri tomorrow afternoon, Book Club The Next Chapter, and I am looking forward to that. I hope I am not coughing through the whole thing. That is it for this edition, time to go take a nap. The Piglet has about six of her stuffed toys all over the bed, close enough that she has a choice of toys to rest her head on.

Friday, May 12, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 132/233, 2023 - Friday

Friday is my second favorite word that begins with the letter F. It was fun walking with Richard and Paul for the first time this week. I think we may be rained out tomorrow, and if we are, I win a dollar from Richard. While we were walking, this butterfly (or maybe a moth) was in the middle of the road. I never did see it open its' wings fully, and there was some struggling going on, so I moved it out of the road. I hope I was helpful and not a hindrance. I got in to the office a little bit earlier than usual, and eventually got everything cleaned off my desk, and even got some extra stuff done. I still have some stuff at the Curious House that I need to take care of, but there is a whole weekend ahead, so I am figuring I will get it all done. It is still pretty hot outside, and the humidity is stifling. We are expecting some possible flooding, and some forecasts say we could get between 8 and 10 inches of rain. Ever since I have lived in central Texas, it is expected that we will have heavy rain and floods over the Memorial Day weekend, it is just going to be a couple weeks early this year.

Thursday, May 11, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 131/234, 2023 - Thursday

I made it home, and I plan to have a good sleep later this evening. I was up at 4:30 EDST, actually a little bit before the phone alarm went off. I had packed everything last night, and I left the hotel at 5:08. I got to the airport before 6, and went through security with no real problems. I pulled the random check straw, but that was really no problem. I made my connecting flight in Atlanta with no problem, and got home easily. I tried to take a nap this afternoon, and that was not successful. I'm pretty sure the girls were happy to see me, and we are back into our respective routines. It is hot like hell in central Texas. I was lovely weather in DC the last several days, but it is a typical summer day here today. We have rain in the forecast for the next several days, and there is some concern about flash flooding and there is a rumor going around that we could receive 8 to 10 inches of rain before it is allover. The lakes are actually rising, and that is a good thing, we hope they keep rising. What would a trip to DC be without the obligatory photo of the White House? Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 130/235, 2023 - Wednesday

Okay, my 2023 Legislative Conference is a wrap. I will be up early in the morning to catch a 7:30 flight home, via Atlanta. I am looking forward to getting home, and I miss the girls. While I have been in our Nation's Capital, I have been very disappointed with the 'pet sitter' I hired. I should have followed my gut, when she was not interested in stopping by the house before I left. I had hired her once before, and all was good, but this time was a HUGE disappointment. If it were not for my great neighbor Pam, I would not have been able to cope. I will be grateful to Pam for ever and ever. Okay, enough of that, I need to go on. This morning, a bunch of us visited the NAR building, which is an annual thing for many of us. After that, we went to the Old Ebbit Grill for lunch, then I had a couple last meetings. One at 2PM, one at 4PM, and the final dinner at 6:30. I doubt I will sleep much this evening, I am basically packed, all I have to do in the morning is to zip up a couple things, check the room a final time, and go grab a cab. I will talk with you all tomorrow. This photo is of a group from Austin at dinner tonight, Top row, me, Teresa and Jennifer. Seated Eileen and Becky.

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 129/236, 2023 - Tuesday

What the photo accompanying this journal entry proves is, what I have known for my whole life, I should have been taller and had longer arms! It was a relatively easy day today. In 2019, Melinda and Steve and I went to Ben's Chili Bowl for lunch. We were told it was just a spot for the regulars, not the tourists. Today, Steve and I made our way back to it, and had lunch again. It has not really changed at all, and it was fun to make our way back. Tonight, we had our National Block Party at the Nationals Park. I drizzled rain in the morning, but was nice in the afternoon. When we left for the ball park, it was about 64 degrees, and expected to be in the high 50s at 10 o'clock. It has been a whirlwind trip so far, moreso than I remember from conferences past, and there is one more full day left. 

Monday, May 8, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 128/237, 2023 - Monday

I did something today, that I have never done in my life: I used an iron and an ironing board in my hotel room. I have to admit, I have packed this sport coat many times, and I finally decided there were just too many wrinkles, and, even though I asked very nicely, I could not find anyone up to the task of removing the wrinkles. What in the hell is wrong with our society? I asked nicely! It was a good day in our nation's capital, and I took advantage of a lot of things. The high point for me was the Hall of Fame inductee ceremony, and the two dinners (two) that I attended this evening. I did not order dinner at the first one, but there was key lime pie at the second one. At dinner tonight, I was lucky to be at a table of very good friends, and we laughed until two of us thought we were going to choke on the laughter. Too much fun, and it is really good to laugh out loud! Tomorrow will be another full day, and we have lots of things to get accomplished. THis is a photo of me and Theodora. I met Theodora many years ago in Orlando, and we see each other generally at these conferences. One of my faves!

Sunday, May 7, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 127/238, 2023 - Sunday

Apparently, I was only pretending to take a few photos today during the various meetings and receptions. I seem to remember taking photos, but they are not to be found on my phone. I will try to do better tomorrow. A good bunch of meetings, Forums, forecasts and hanging with a bunch of friends from across the country that I do not get to see enough of. The afternoon in DC was kind of drizzly, but not so bad that I could not walk to a reception that was about a mile (probably less) away from the hotel. I was very surprised that I figured out how to let Siri provide me with the walking instructions, and on the way back, I figured it out all by myself. I fear my calorie consciousness has been thrown to the gutter, since there is nothing to eat here that is not NOT on my recent intake schedule. Oh well, I expect I will overcome this too. I have big plans for tomorrow and Tuesday and Wednesday. There is still a lot of stuff to get accomplished, and lots of stuff to get started. It will all happen.

Saturday, May 6, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 126/239, 2023 - Saturday

When you change your flight schedules about two weeks before the flight, you get hat you get. What I got was a flight to DC with a connection through Houston, that got me here about 6:30 this evening (EDST). But it will all be okay with a little bit of sleep. I met my TREPAC peeps in the lobby, and we headed off to dinner. Reservations were at 8:30. I feel like such a grown-up. And cosmopolitan, too. It is almost midnight (DC time), and I will be out before long. This conference is in a totally different part of town than I am used to. I have stayed at The Marriott Wardman Park for years, pre-Covid. Then last year, I actually stayed in Maryland (I think) because the Wardman closed. Now, we are centered around the convention center, and I will have to go and explore tomorrow. In the meantime, I am calling it a night.

Friday, May 5, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 125/240, 2023 - Friday

I was dragging for most of the day today...I think it was because I was pretty busy yesterday, and it was a long day. We had a good walk this morning, it was 70 degrees, and the humidity was really high. I got in to the office pretty early, and actually got my desk cleaned off of important stuff, and took off for home about 1 o'clock. I have a lot of stuff that needed doing this afternoon, and I got some of it done. The swallows have invaded a ledge under the cover of the front door. They are not nesting, I think it is a bunch of adolescent males sleeping on the ledge and being really free with their bowels. I have put up some things that I think will deter them, just not sure. I went to Wild Birds Unlimited, and apparently they are not unlimited in their products, since they do not carry anything that might deter swallows from choosing the Curious House. My imagination took over. It is not pretty, but maybe it will work in the long term. I went to dinner with Paulina, Val and Oliver tonight, and Dan and Nancy were here as well, celebrating Oliver's birthday tomorrow. It was great to see them, and it was just like old times!


Thursday, May 4, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 124/241, 2023 - Thursday

It was a relatively long and successful day. Of course, the walk was good with Paul and Richard, and then I was off to an appointment with a cardiologist. EKG was fine, no real issues. I am going to have a 'nuclear' stress test in June, and we will see what that shows. No real concerns, just might as well do it. I walk every day, I did a 30 mile bike ride a couple days ago, and did not really get tired or stressed. Just might as well make sure all is good. After the cardiologist, I went and removed signs and lockboxes from a property, and then it was back home. I left for the office about 1 o'clock, and got a couple errands done on the way in. Tonight was the TREPAC sneak preview of the Guardians of the Galaxy 3 movie, and it was a fun time. It was late when I got home, and all the girls really cared about was that they were gonna have for dinner. All is well, tomorrow is another day!

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 123/242, 2023 - Wednesday

Well, it has taken quite a while, but it is finally Wednesday. I did half of the walk this morning, because I had an early appointment with my doctor. I was thoroughly poked and prodded, questioned and interrogated. I was nekkid for part of it, and was not even invited for dinner. I was really concerned when I pulled in to the parking lot; they were unloading busloads of old people right in front of me. It was not comforting. When I got inside the lobby, there were more old people in there. It is also too bad that more people do not appreciate my sense of humor, something I am always surprised by. Ugh. Everything is good, and I got the blood test results this afternoon, and everything is within the acceptable ranges. Tomorrow I have an appointment with a cardiologist, and I don't expect anything earth shattering as a result of that. I got in to the office about 11 this morning, and I left at 2 to go get my haircut. I hope you enjoy the photo I have chosen for this is the first morning glory bloom of the season. I am truly happy to see it, it is something that makes me really happy.

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 122/243, 2023 - Tuesday

For every person in the world (oaky, let's narrow this down to the USA) that considers themselves to be 'toned,' there are ten of me, sporting 'flabby abs and hard arteries!' I admit it, so just shut up! We had a good walk this morning, and then we had our ROMEOs breakfast. We universally complained that our food is consistently delivered 'cold,' but we also cannot think of another place to meet on a regular basis. It is what it is. I got in to the office, and it was a pretty busy day. For me that is, and my days are generally not that busy. I had stuff to do in the office, and then there were late afternoon appointments. Generally, I try to make late morning or early afternoon appointments, but that did not work for today. I did not get home until after 6, and the girls were about to worry themselves sick. The Piglet was a nervous wreck, they did not get fed until late, and she was about to lose a pound, but alas, I walked in and she calmed down. Tomorrow will be busy again, but not quite as busy. Thursday will be another late day, but I expect I will survive. It is supposed to start raining again late Thursday afternoon, so we will be happy for more rain.

Monday, May 1, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 121/244, 2023 - Monday

If you have ever shared a zoom screen with me, you know I have a few hats. I don't WEAR hats, I just have hats. When Carrie and I were walking back from lunch this afternoon on South First Street, I found this hat on the sidewalk. Gehricke is apparently a winery and vineyard on Sonoma County, and probably a relatively snooty place. Maybe not. But, I now have the hat, and it is in the laundry room, waiting for a good washing to rid it of whatever kinds of cooties there may be inhabiting it. Maybe then, I will try it on, just for the hell of it. Today was a Monday, and it lived up to it's reputation, although tomorrow will be Tuesday, and we will all continue to go forward. Tomorrow, I have a couple appointments, and I will visit a new client tomorrow afternoon to bring her property into our management portfolio. Just in case you need reminding, and just because I need to remind myself every now and then, I am a lucky guy!

Sunday, April 30, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 120/245, 2023 - Sunday

I took this photo yesterday, but I wanted to use the neighbors dinner photo for yesterdays journal entry. I knew going in to vote that there were only two items on my particular ballot, and only one of those was a contested race. When I was there, there were 14 poll workers and me. I was very nervous, I did not want to do anything wrong, lest I cause someone to cry. It was VERY quiet at the polling place. But I did it, and my streak continues. The walk this morning was good, just Dick and me, and we took a couple detours and a different path here and there. We walked through one of the new construction houses, odd that it is a two bedroom, relatively small home for the neighborhood. We also took a look at some of the work that is being done on the walking paths. Some good, some not so much. No brunch today, but I did go to a movie Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret. I am apparently NOT the target audience for this movie, an to be honest, I was disappointed. I had expected it to be a laugh riot, but I did not find it to be so. Sorry to disappoint everyone, especially me. It has been two lovely days here at the Curious House, and this morning I did replant a few things, and pulled a weed or two. Nothing drastic. 

Saturday, April 29, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 119/246, 2023 - Saturday

I didn't get everything on my list crossed off today, but I got a few things done, and a few other things done. Our walk was good, the air felt fresh and clean; all the pollens were washed out of the air as a result of the good rain yesterday. After the walk, I tried to take a nap, but that didn't happen. I cleaned the backyard bird feeder, and let it dry out so I could fill it again. I couldn't fill it, since we have been having rain every other day or so. The single estate sale Pam and I went to was AWFUL, although I did spend two dollars. After that, I did take a nap, and when I got up, I decided to go vote and run a couple other errands. I voted, even though there were only two things on my ballot; a contested school board race, and an uncontested school board race. I was the only person voting while I was there, and there were eleven poll workers. Then I headed to Home Depot, found NOTHING I was looking for, and then I remembered I had left a message for the vet earlier in the week, and I never heard back. I stopped at the vet, and, to make a long story less boring, they said if I wanted to go get the girls, they would wait and give them their shots and do their checkups. Did that, and $666.60 later, they are all set for a while. Tonight was the neighbors dinner, and that was fun. We were also celebrating Diane's retirement, and we all had a good time. Our once a month dinner is working pretty well, and we are ALL lucky folks!

Friday, April 28, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 118/247, 2023 - Friday

Well, the weather folks got it close to right with their forecasts. The severe weather started out to be hitting overnight tonight into Saturday morning. Through the week, it got earlier and earlier, and as of this morning, it was predicted to hit around rush hour this afternoon. And it did. It hit the Curious House just a little after 5, with winds, rain, thunder, lightning and hail. Nothing terrible, about 6/10 of an inch of rain, the hail was not terrible, and the temperature fell about 25 degrees. It could have been worse. Our walk this morning was good, I got in to the offie about 9:30, and joined Michael and Lynda for lunch. The neighbors were supposed to meet up for dinner tonight, but we postponed it until tomorrow night, so that will be good. There is only one estate sale tomorrow, and I may go to it alone, not sure yet. The weekend should be pretty nice, and I think it will be a relatively calm weekend. Even though I once again tried to get dramatic photos of the lightning and hail, you will all just have to settle for the interesting green sky before it all hit.

Thursday, April 27, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 117/248, 2023 - Thursday

Apparently the storms passed last night with little damage in central Texas, the Georgetown part of central Texas, anyway. I fell asleep a little while after 10 last night, and it seems there was a lot of thunder, lightning (I saw some of the lightning before I went to sleep), and rain. But I slept through most of it. That is the good part of go to sleep! I tried taking a couple photos of the lightning while I had the girls outside, but that didn't work. The attached photo is the best i could do. Our walk this morning was peaceful and pleasant, so that was good. I got off to the office somewhat early, and took care of some stuff in the office, before my 1 o'clock zoom. That done, I headed home close to 2 o'clock, and I sat out in the backyard with the girls for a while. Tomorrow, I am having lunch with Michael and Lynda, and then dinner with the neighborhood peeps. This will be out third monthly dinner with neighbors, and I think we are all having a good time doing it.The weather is supposed to get a little dicey tomorrow evening, and that is always fun!

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 116/249, 2023 - Wednesday

The day started out damp, but it got better as the day went on.I headed out for our walk, and we stood in the rain (heavy mist) trying to decide if we were going to walk or not, and the decision was 'no.' I headed back home, sat down in the big chair with a couple girls, and made the best out of the found hour. When I got up, I fed the dogs, and then made an egg loaf, which I shared with the girls as well. It has been a long time since we had an egg loaf. I was on three zoom calls today, and that last one was supposed to last an hour, and it lasted for 16 minutes. That is good and bad. Good that it lasted only 16 minutes, bad that lots of people scheduled time out of their days for nothing. There, I said it. The sun did come out this afternoon, and everybody decided to take advantage of it, me, the girls and the lizard on the fence. We are expecting storms overnight, and I fear it will be one of those nights that the storm warning go off on my phone every five minutes. It makes for aggravation and not much sound sleep, but it is what it is. I'll let you know how we fare tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 115/250, 2023 - Tuesday

Tonight was book club (today was Nancy's birthday, too), and I almost forgot to make this journal entry. That does not happen very often, not very often at all. The day started with a nice walk, just me and Dick, and it rained a little bitty bit on us while we were walking. Throughout the day, we got very little rain, just to prove the weather prognosticators wrong. This morning was the ROMEOs breakfast, and again, it was just me and Dick. After breakfast, I had a quick appointment, and then it was off to the office. A few this and that, and I was headed home by about 2 o'clock. I had one errand to do, and the housekeeper was coming this afternoon, so I needed to meet her to open the door. After she arrived, I left and finished one more errand, and now I have a clean house and I am pretty much caught up. Book club was good, and I think everybody enjoyed this months book. I have already read next months book, so that is good, and next month book club will be at the Curious House. I am working from home tomorrow, and it will basically be a day of zoom meetings. I have three zoom meetings on the books, and that is a lot compared to lately, since more and more stuff is happening in person. Poppies are still blooming, and I took this photo the other day, just before I took the photo of the black wooly.

Monday, April 24, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 114/251, 2023 - Monday

Okay, about 90 days ago, I found out that I was okay to give blood. I had hepatitis about 40 years ago, and I had assumed that disqualified me for donating blood, but it weren't so. SO...I am back on a 90 day cycle after all that time, and I like doing it. It just goes to show you, that's what I get for thinking! It is still chilly in central Texas, and we are supposed to get more rain this week, forecasting almost two more inches at the Curious House. I'll take it. We walked this morning, and then I was off to my 10 o'clock appointment, which I got to early. Of course I did. Then to the office. I had set out two oranges to take with me, and forgot them. I figured two oranges would prepare me for the blood draw, and maybe they would have, but we will never know.In about ninety more days, you will see another photo of me pumping out blood. Don't forget to squeeze! I am at the climax of my most recent book, The Huntress and I can't quite quit it. I have about an hour to go, and I will get it finished tonight, instead of waiting to finish it on my drive in to Austin tomorrow morning. It's a good book, long, but worth it!

Sunday, April 23, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 113/252, 2023 - Sunday

I could not find any scientific names for this caterpillar, and the only description Mrs. Google could provide was 'fuzzy, hairy black caterpillar.' I spotted this caterpillar while I was visiting (alone) two estate sales this afternoon. I passed by a lovely display of poppies, bluebonnets, iris and other spring blooms, and backed up to take a couple photos. As I was walking to the car, I spied this black, hairy, fuzzy guy, and decided to make him the photo of the day for this journal entry. Now, from the beginning... It cooled off overnight, and it was a chilly walk this morning with Dick and Paul. After the walk, I did laundry and a few other things around the house, and took a nap. I did eventually get up and go to the estate sales, and I spent a total of $11. A little of this, and a little of that. I stopped at HEB on the way home, and that was pretty much the total of my exertion for the day. It has been cloudy and cool, no rain though. Tomorrow I have a couple appointments, and tomorrow afternoon I am scheduled to donate some more blood. I like being back to donating blood on a regular basis. Stay tuned for photos!

Saturday, April 22, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 112/253, 2023 - Saturday

Happy Earth Day, y'all. Today, for the first time in (probably) at least 15 years, I put on some spandex. Richard and I proceeded to the  Georgetown Red Poppy Bike Ride this morning, and according to all my GPS and stuff (including my very own GBS), my 28 mile ride turned out to be about a 30+ mile ride. Whatever, I also determined that, I would have done better if I had actually trained more than I did for the ride. BUT, we made it home right on schedule at 1PM, and it was a great ride for us both. I am not sure how many riders there were in total, Richard and I were numbers 249 and 250, and I saw folks as riders in the 1250 range. It did not seem like there were that many people on the ride. After the ride, I had an errand to run, so I headed into Austin and back, and then went down for a nap. Not long enough, but it was a nap. My legs are tired, and I will be up tomorrow morning, doing our regular walk, and having a great time with Richard and Paul. I'm a lucky guy!

Friday, April 21, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 111/254. 2023 - Friday

We (me and the girls) survived the storms last night, and it has been a pretty nice day. I walked with Dick and Paul this morning, and I had an appointment with the dermatologist this morning, before I took off to the city. All good with the derma-lady, just froze off another little spot on my face. All was good in the office, and I left this afternoon at about 2 o'clock, did a couple errands, picked up some signs and lock boxes, and headed home. Paulina and Oliver came over at about 5, and we went in to Georgetown and had dinner at a new place, Jimmy Vegas'. Good bar-b-cue and sides, so what else can you ask for? We then headed out and had ice cream at a secret little ice cream shop, and then just drove around for a while. The main thing on my schedule tomorrow is a 28 mile bike ride that Richard and I are doing. I think it will be a lot of fun, should not take too long. It starts at 8, and I think we should be home by at least one o'clock. I will give you all a full report tomorrow night.

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 110/255, 2023 - Thursday

Well, there's a storm a-coming. It is raining pretty good right now, and the winds are picking up. The tv weather peeps are saying there has been ping pong ball hail in Georgetown, so we will just see how this all plays out. The tornadic (is that a word?) stuff in still north and east of us. Otherwise, it has been a pretty good day. A good walk this morning, an early meeting in the office with some clients, two zoom calls, and some this and that. The weather alerts keep distracting me, and did you know, cloud to ground lightning is about 50 thousand degrees? That is what they just said. That's hot! Okay, I am going to sign off and go pay attention to the storm. One good thing is, the two girls are not affected by thunder or lightning.

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 109/256, 2023 - Wednesday

I had my phone set to alarm at 6AM this morning, but I was awake, as is my usual tendency. I had a nice walk with Dick and Paul, and there were a few little sprinkles here and there, but nothing terrible. I made it home, fed the girls and get ready to go in to Austin. I had a ten o'clock appointment, and a noon appointment, and I did not want to be late for either one of them. I made it to both with no issues. The noon appointment was at the Mexican Consulate in Austin, where I applied for a Visa, and I not have a Visa that is valid for six months. When I go to Playa del Carmen, either in late May or early June, I will go to the Embassy there (or maybe a Consulate, I'm not sure), and apply for residency. Things are progressing for the condo purchase in Playa, and we should close on that on or before June first. I will keep you all informed. It has been a really cloudy day, but no rain to report. The seven day forecast shows pretty good chances of rain every day for the next seven days. I repeat, I am a lucky guy, thanks.

Volume 15 - Day 108/257, 2023 - Tuesday

I am late with this entry, it is actually Wednesday already, but I just got home from my Kansas City trip. It was a really good Broker Summit, and there was lot and LOTS of interesting stuff taken away from the couple days. The overriding thing today was whether or not we were going to get home close to as planned or not. Southwest had a 'ground stoppage' this morning, which meant no flights. Period. The stoppage was over within a couple hours, but things were backed up and delayed. One of our speakers this morning was a former CEO of United Airlines, and sometimes stuff happens just because stuff happens, and it is no ones fault, and there is really no one to blame. So, during the Q&A, I asked him what I should say to Southwest employees when I finally got to the airport and got on a flight. His response was, just give them a hug, and tell them you know it wasn't their fault. SO...challenge accepted. Since about 6:30 Tuesday afternoon, I have hugged somewhere around 20 various staff on the two Southwest flights it took to get me home, and I let them know it wasn't their fault. I expect many of them had been the brunt of inconvenienced travelers frustration, but that was not going to be me today. I also recommend that you ask permission before you go up and just start hugging people. In case you were wondering, there are PLENTY of photos documenting my mission to hug Southwest peeps late this afternoon and evening, including the one accompanying this journal entry. Photo credit Alisha. Goodnight.

Monday, April 17, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 107/258, 2023 - Monday

It has been a long since I have actually seen tulips blooming in the wild. When I lived in Memphis, I was a regular at Overton Park, and there was an area in the spring that was alive with tulips, and of course, being a member of the public, in a public place, I would cut some and take them home with me. Lovely! I am in Kansas City right now, at a Broker Summit (NAR sponsored), and on the way to the evenings event, we passed these lovelies. There were hundreds of them over an span of three or four blocks, and they were just beautiful. It took me back several decades! The day started off with a nice walk, and then I packed for the trip. The girls knew something was up, but they are being looked after very nicely at the Curious House. I will be back Wednesday, so I believe they will survive. Alisha came and schlepped me to the airport this morning, and we made it to Kansas City about 3PM, got to the hotel about 4, and the reception started at 6. Tomorrow will be a full day of meetings, and it is really good to see many of my colleagues and friends here from across the country. Good times!

Sunday, April 16, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 106/259, 2023 - Sunday

I don't recall this happening this soon in the season last yerr, but I spied a few lemon buds on my Mayer Lemon bush this afternoon. Last year, I harvested about 12 or 15 lemons, and all the recipients were very grateful for the gift. I have to admit, they were lovely, but they take forever to ripen. Worth the wait, too! The day started, as usual, with a nice walk, and lots of conversation between me and Richard and Paul. There was no brunch today, everyone (except me) was otherwise occupied. I took the surge protector that I bought last Friday back to Home Depot, and received a curious look because I had purchased the wrong one. The hermetically sealed packaging was not in the least bit disturbed, and I presented the receipt, but I was very suspect about being up to something. Maybe it is just my face. I also cleaned out the garage a bit, nothing extravagant, just blowing the dead leaves out, and the front patio as well. Honestly, I am kind of tired of the oak dangling things falling off the trees in front and back. Technically, those things are called catkins, and even more technically they are known as aments. They are the male flower parts, and each of those little bumps is a male flower consisting of a bract (a highly modified leaf), a fobbed calyx and some pollen-producing stamens. There you have it, sixth grade health class is now complete, and I am still tired of them.

Saturday, April 15, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 105/260, 2023 - Saturday

If your criteria for a successful day of estate saleing is dependent on the number of creepy dolls you buy, then today was a bust. I did, however, buy three dolls, including one Betty Boop doll. I was, too, a victim of estate sale overload, because we went to seven (yes 7) estate sales today. That is a record for us. I spent about $35, came away with the dolls, and a passel of bells. I may go back to one tomorrow, where whatever is left will be 75% off. You never know. We did have a nice walk this morning, the temperature was in the mid-60s. Today's high temperature was 94 degrees, which matches the same high temperature that was recorded in 1924. There is supposed to be a cold front coming through overnight, and that will be very welcome. I think I need to go turn the sprinklers back on to run overnight as well. Dick and Marge are hosting a driveway wine event tonight, so I will be heading down that way in just a little while. Not sure if there is going to be a brunch meet-up tomorrow or not. I am also holding a house open tomorrow afternoon, so if you want to come by and visit, just let me know.

Friday, April 14, 2023

Volume 15 - Day 104/261, 2023 - Friday

Well, it is the eve of the weekend. Yippee! We had a nice walk this morning, and then I was off to the office. I had an 11:30 meeting, and then I took off for home after that. I had a couple errands to run on the way home, and one of them was to stop and get a new whole house surge protector. I had made an appointment with an electrician to be here around 3 o'clock to replace the one that was no longer working, and apparently I bought the wrong one (although it was the only one) at Home Depot. So, the electricians stopped and bought one (I got to pay extra) on the way to the house, and that is one thing on my list that I can check off now. I have to take the wrong one back to Home Depot tomorrow. I had to go back in to the office this evening, and it was a pleasant drive to and from. There was a little sprinkle of rain this afternoon, even though it would not really even count as a trace of rain. As expected, tomorrow will be an estate sale day, and it will be fun. Then, maybe a couple naps...

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Voume 15 - Day 103/262, 2023 - Thursday

Today was a really nice day. Weatherwise, it could maybe have been a little bit better, but it was great. We had a nice walk, and I headed in to the office and got there at about 10 o'clock. We has an office lunch at Dirty Martin's Kum-Bak on Guadalupe. I have lived here for 38 years, and to the best of my recollection, I have never been there. Martin's has been in business for 97 years, and they may be wiped out because of the transportation plan in Austin. Lots of people are not in favor of that. The food was great, and, it is called Dirty Martin's because when the place first opened, they had dirt floors in the restaurant. Times have changed, but much of Martin's remains the same. Ag]fter lunch, I had a 2 o'clock appointment, and I headed home after that. I made it home about 4:30 and went down for a nap. Naps are good. I think I will go hang out on the front patio for a bit, and then settle in for a hour or so of network television.