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Archive for the ‘me’ Category

Days off

Today I spent a perfectly lovely afternoon reclined on a picnic table bench, reading a book. The dog stretched out next to me and alternated between napping and rolling in the grass. I started and finished The Story Sisters by Alice Hoffman.

I think the first Hoffman book I read was Practical Magic, which I adored. It’s one of the few novel-to-film adaptations I also enjoy – the movie keeps to the sentiment of the novel, if not the letter, though the book is to be preferred.

When I had to describe Hoffman’s work to a friend last night I said it wasn’t fantasy, it’s more like fantastic fiction. It has every quality of ‘literary’ fiction but each work contains something magical or otherworldly that’s thoroughly woven into the narrative in such a way that it almost stops being fantastic and simply another element in a great story. It bridges genres and never fails to surprise and delight me. There’s never the sense of a re-tread or staleness, no matter how many novels I’ve read (and re-read). She’s one of the few authors whose work I can reliably buy in hardcover or, in this case, kindle.

All in all, a wonderful and relaxing afternoon.

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Downshifting

There has definitely been an adjustment to living out here that extends beyond the change in altitude.

A couple of weeks ago, it was snowing and there was a fair amount of traffic to Vail. I made it over and back the Battle Mountain Pass without ever having to touch a brake – unlike the two drivers in front of me. I was inordinately proud of myself.

The other notable difference from home  is the dress code. I’d heard jokes about the Colorado Tuxedo (jeans) but there’s more than a little truth to it. For example, we’re attending a dinner tonight. At home, I’d have worn a dress – not an especially fancy one. Out here, that’s still way too formal. I’ve tentatively settled on a sweater and skirt and am still running the risk of being ‘too’ dressed up. Spouse suggested I wear a pair of “good jeans.” Alas, I own only regular jeans. Possibly I will have to consult someone to find out what “good jeans” consists of. I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around this.

I was hoping to find a book club in town, but haven’t had much luck. It seems I’ll have to drive to Avon or Vail but at least there are a couple and they’re not so far that I’ll mind the drive. The social interaction will be nice, for sure.

The job hunting continues, without much success. Right now I’m working three days a week which leaves me with just a little too much free time.

I’ve started running with the dog again, intervals in a 1.8 mile route for the time being. I’m hoping to work up to a 3.5 mile route. Running is a DEFINITE challenge. For the first time in my life, I find that heart rate charts might apply to me.

Next week I’ve got an appointment to get contact lenses. I haven’t worn glasses this much since I was 13 and I’m not really loving it. The nice thing is that the new eye doctor just needs me to fax my old prescription – rather than needing all my records.

For now, I’m off to run errands and get things around for our overnight trip.

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We didn’t just SURVIVE skiing, we actually had a blast. We went to Ski Cooper (best kept skiing secret in the Rockies) and – first things first – took a lesson. We had a great teacher (Liz Mathieu, if you’re interested) and she  took us through everything she could in 2 hours. I’m not really sure how people just slap on skis and get on a mountain but let me tell you what, I’m hella glad I didn’t. It was snowy and overcast, so we pretty much had the hill to ourselves. Plenty of room for practicing and then Spouse and I tackled the intermediate hill.

My boots were just a smidge too big and all this damn yoga has given me excellent posture, so I probably had the biggest adjustments to make. I had a hard time leaning into the skis, because of the boots, and my tendency is to keep my upper body nice and straight. These two things make for crazy and out of hand speed – which I LOVED. Turns out the speed is less terrifying (though no less exhilarating) when you’ve got more control so the intermediate hill is what it took for me to ‘get’ the leaning forward. ;) I had a couple of spectacular wipeouts but the snow was so soft that it was like falling on a mattress. It was, in a word, fantastic.

Last night was a busier Tuesday than usual and today I’m taking the girls to Salida. Probably more pictures in the works (since I’ve gotten way off schedule) but there is only one ski photo and I’ll have to get that from Slim. Also there may be another tattoo in the works.

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Yawn

I am tired.

I’ve checked in for my flight. I have to finish packing my bag and then I’m to bed. I have to get up at ridiculousdark o’clock in order to leave by dark:30 and get to the airport. I have a new book and will hopefully not be done with it before takeoff. 

I DID make a new playlist, so I can test it out while I’m traveling.

Got some chores taken care of at the house, got the eye doctor thing done, got to spend some more time with Mom. I’m glad to be getting home tomorrow (which means Colorado is officially home now) but I’m also a little sad to be leaving.

Delphi is awesomely planning to kill the benefits of retired employees. I thought the whole point of those benefits were to reward folks for the work they’d done? Nice. Really, really nice. It’s a good thing  the US auto industry didn’t shoot themselves in the foot by ignoring the trend for fuel-efficient vehicles and continuing to crank out expensive gas hogs.

Oh, wait.

In other news, the friend who sold out Michael Phelps to the British tabloids is a colostomy bag. A used colostomy bag.

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Not much of an update

If you were following twitter today, you know all the news. Mom’s surgery went well, she should be coming home tomorrow morning. They won’t know for sure about radiation for a couple of days but it looks like she may not need it.

I’m home, catching some z’s, and then headed back to the hospital in the morning.

Got to see Caribou and Matt, which was awesome. I wish they had moved to Colorado with us! Thank goodness for facebook and skype…

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Last night I had Pad Thai from Stir Crazy. It’s crap chain food which isn’t an approximation of real pad thai, but I love it and I got to eat it for dinner. Today I went to TWO honest to goodness malls (Laurel Park Place, Somerset), not to mention Sephora and Lush. It was a little fantastic, I’m not going to lie.

I’m honestly not much of a shopper. I tend to go when I need something, so I haven’t really missed this kind of shopping in Leadville. I don’t really need any shoes or jeans. I’ve got a lot of t-shirts. While I could probably use some more sweaters, I’m not strapped for them. I admit, however, to always being on the lookout for crazy kneesocks. Today I didn’t find any. I DID find a fantastic lipstick at Sephora, so I’m calling it good.

Since I left Michigan, all the agressive drivers have put on their granny pants. Everywhere I go, people are driving 10mph UNDER THE SPEED LIMIT. I’m not saying you HAVE to drive the speed limit, but if you aren’t you’d damn well better be in the right lane. Good news: I only flipped off one person. I even ignored my mom’s (half-hearted) suggestion to reciprocate his bad driving behavior.

“Mom,” I said. “That’s what causes death from Road Rage. I prefer to have my little Road Tantrums: obscene hand gestures, loud cursing with the windows closed, abundant questioning of his or her parents’ profession and/or marital status. And then when I’m done, I feel better and no one has run the risk of getting into a car accident or shot.”

She looked doubtful but I stand by my record.

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I left Leadville a bit before 9am – plenty of time to get to the airport for an 11:40 am flight.

Traffic was good, the roads were clear, and though I was running low on gas, everything was going pretty well. Right until I missed my exit. The sign was misleading – it made it look as though it was a two lane exit – and it was either skip the exit or try to hop over and not cause a wreck. I’m always going to go with ‘skip the exit.’

I got off at the next exit and turned on my VZ Navigator to figure out how the hell to fix the conundrum. In the meantime, I notice a gas station and pull in for gas (rather than leave my car in the economy lot with only fumes in the fuel line). I get the Navigator working, and then I misunderstood the directions because there were two exits very close together. So I have to reroute AGAIN. At this point I begin to freak out a little. I have never missed a flight, ever.

Get to the economy lot, park, get on the shuttle, refrain from yelling CAN WE GO NOW! RIGHT NOW! at the driver. We get to the terminal and I’m right at the wire. When I see the line at the security checkpoint, I know there’s no chance I’m making this flight. I call Northwest to start the rebooking process FROM the line, because I know it’s going to be a pain in the balls. I bought my ticket with miles, it’s going to be a nightmare, yadda. Before I get a live person on the phone, I have to go through security so I hang up.

At this point, I know I’m not making my flight because I’ve checked my boarding pass and OH HAI, your flight leaves at 11:28. So I get my shoes back on, drag my bags to the gate, and prepare to fight the counter lady. I notice there are a LOT of people standing around and assume it’s the Raleigh flight I see listed on the board.

I get to the counter, there is no lady. And then on the back wall, the next flight to Detroit scrolls across at 3:09 pm. Followed by the Raleigh flight,  but it’s DETROIT/Raleigh. At 11:28 am.

WHAT.

I ask the guy next to me, “This isn’t still the 11:30 flight to Detroit, is it?” Because it’s 11:35 and if this is that flight, they’ve got nobody on board.

“Yeah,” he says. “I’m supposed to be in Detroit at 6 and now they aren’t sure I can get on the flight.”

I let out a whoop of celebration – no lie – and half a dozen people look at me like I’m crazy. They start the pre-board, so I go get in line. I am the happiest person here because everybody else is pissed that their flight is late. I’m totally stoked that I didn’t MISS the flight and therefore have to pay a metric asston of money for my mistake.

The boarding progresses and I hear that the delay is because of some water problem they had on the plane. Apparently the potable water in the back of the plane got all over, like on the floor. Whatevs. My plane hasn’t left!

The counter lady starts hollering out some names and telling people to stand to the side. I’m one of the names. All of the folks standing to the side realize we’re all Back of the Plane folk. This does not bode well.

Sure enough, they board everyone except the last four rows. They bumped all the rest of us because the floor was wet. WTF, right? So everyone to the side, now, is SUPER PISSED. Except for me, because I’m totally happy that this is their fault and THEY have to fix it – not me.

It takes about an hour and a half for them to get most of the replacment flights sorted out – I got put on the next Detroit flight (3pm) and a $300 credit toward a new plane ticket because they bumped me. Best worst flight day, evar.

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