2018 Life Logs, Day 232—Last Day of ‘Vacation’

2018 Life Logs, Day 232—Last Day of ‘Vacation’
Date: Monday, August 20, 2018
Weather: Overcast; High 71, Low 62 F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

I’ve really enjoyed my ‘vacation’ week, but I look forward to seeing Heather, Jed, and boys when they return from Maine tomorrow. During the past week, I had breakfast with my friend Jane Woodin, I spent a morning exploring parts of the Cape with friend Karen Baranowski, I went sailing on Pooh with the Woodins, and I hosted a kayaking and dinner party for my Newcomers Dining-In group. It was a good week. But it was not without some issues. I spent one whole day dealing with my refrigerator. I thought the problem was fixed until today when it started making noises again. It went on for about an hour and then stopped, but I know I need to empty both the freezer and refrigerator and let it totally defrost as there is still ice build-up around the evaporator fan motor that is located in the freezer area. Hopefully the defrosting job can wait until the weekend. And while I am on the topic of ice build-up, I’ll just mention that tonight I have on long pants and a long-sleeve shirt. The high today was only 71 and right now the temp is 67 degrees F with winds from the north and it feels chilly.

I spent part of my day today dealing with a continuing car problem. Last Wednesday the Malfunction Light came on and another light was flashing. I called Honda and they suggested that I stop driving the car until I could get it in to be checked. Taking the car to Honda means driving to Hyannis and then taking the bus home and I just didn’t have the time or patience for that and was going to deal with it today. I parked the car at Heather and Jed’s and started driving Heather’s Honda. I didn’t mention any of this in my logs as I was having too much fun focusing on the positive. Then on Friday night, Peter Baranowski recommended I call a place called Paul’s Precision Auto in downtown Falmouth. They were closed for Race Weekend, but I left a message. Yesterday I needed to use my Honda Fit to transport chairs back to Heather and Jed’s. I love my little car as it is like having a small truck. When I started the car yesterday, amazingly, the Malfunction Light was no long lit up. So, I drove it home after delivering the chairs. This morning I started the car to go to the gym, and unfortunately, that light was back. I went to the gym and to the chiropractor, and then I drove to Paul’s Precision. Paul checked the system with the computer and it appears the problem is with the transmission. Paul reset the light and sent me back to the place where I had the transmission flushed two weeks ago when I had an oil change. was done. They assured me they put in the right transmission fluid and think the problem might be a bubble in the system. The light did return later in the day, so I will go back in the morning to continue to search for the problem. Sure hope it is just a bubble and not an internal transmission issue.

2018 Life Logs, Day 231—Trading Swiss Chard for Hydrangeas

2018 Life Logs, Day 231—Trading Swiss Chard for Hydrangeas
Date: Sunday, August 19, 2018
Weather: Mostly Cloudy; High 79, Low 65 F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Today was the 45th annual Falmouth Road Race and the cloudy, cool day provided perfect weather for the runners. A University of Michigan student Canada won the men’s race and a woman from Kenya won the women’s race for the third year in a row. The temperature today was only a few degrees less than yesterday, but the wind was coming from the north and that always adds a chill to the air.

I spent my day doing a little gardening, doing a little cooking, and visiting with friend Karen Baranowski. She came over with a bucket full of hydrangeas for me and I had a large vase of Swiss chard for her. I learned the trick of keeping kale, parsley, and Swiss chard in a vase of water to keep it fresh from Jed’s mother, Marti. I love doing it as the bouquets of veggies are just as beautiful as flowers to me. But I must admit that I was very pleased to get the vase of hydrangeas. They are beautiful and make me smile every time I look at them. I have a pot of Thai hot peppers on the front steps that are also decorative and lift my spirits every time I enter my front door. Power to the flowers and veggies!

2018 Life Logs, Day 230—Day Off

2018 Life Logs, Day 230—Day Off
Date: Saturday, August 18, 2018
Weather: Rain Overnight, Some Sun, Some Clouds; High 81, Low 67 F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

I took the day off. I did finish party clean-up, returning tables, chairs, etc., to Heather and Jed’s. But otherwise, I just muddled through the day with nothing of import to report.

2018 Life Logs, Day 229—Dinner Party at the Cottage

2018 Life Logs, Day 229—Dinner Party at the Cottage
Date: Friday, August 17, 2018
Weather: Partly Sunny; High 84, Low 74 F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

The weather cooperated allowing late afternoon kayaking and an outside dinner party without biting insects . . . until after 8 pm. But then I got my first mosquito bite of the season and decided it was time to move inside. Today was a few degrees cooler than yesterday’s 90 degrees, but cramming ten adults in the cottage living room is a challenge space-wise and it felt very hot, even to me who loves hot. But everyone persisted in good spirits and we cooled down with an ice cream desert from Somerset Creamery provided by the Woodins.

The dinner party progressed in stages. We started with a kayaking expedition. Jane Woodin and her daughter Christina went out in the Woodin’s kayaks. Bruce and Midge went out in Midge’s big kayak that I call The Big Banana. It is big and yellow, thus my name. And I launched my little red kayak and raced to catch up with the group. While we were paddling about, the others sat on the lawn and visited. After kayaking, we moved to my side yard where I had set up tables and chairs for the dinner. The lobster dinner was enjoyed by all. I got the lobster at the Green Pond Fish Market located about a half-mile from here. It was convenient, and the lobster was delicious. Not cheap, but well worth it to have one big lobster fest this summer. I bought the corn at yesterday’s Farmer’s Market from Silverbook Farm and it was the best corn I’ve had all summer. Olivia and Terry brought appetizers, as did Peter and Karen. Peter brought fresh quahogs and Karen made a bourbon slush that was appreciated by all. Midge and Bill brought a fabulous caprese salad, so we really had quite a feast. All the members of our Newcomers Dining-in group were here today, plus Jane’s daughter Christina, who lives in California, but is here visiting, and Shirley, my landlord and next door neighbor. It was a fun celebration of summer with good friends. I do love summer and am so grateful to have such good friends.

2018 Life Logs, Day 228—Afternoon Sail on Pooh

2018 Life Logs, Day 228—Afternoon Sail on Pooh
Date: Thursday, August 16, 2018
Weather: Sunny and Hot; High 90, Low 68 F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Thank you, Bruce and Jane Woodin, for the wonderful afternoon sailing about in Pooh. Jane’s daughter, Christine, is visiting from California, and she joined us. It was a windy afternoon that kept Bruce busy at the tiller, but he kept her steady and we all enjoyed the sail. Tomorrow will be a busy day getting ready for the kayaking and dinner party I am hosting beginning in the late afternoon. I’m looking forward to that.

I’ll close with a remembrance of Aretha Franklin. In 1973, I was teaching high school in Cleveland, Ohio. Aretha and Donny Hathaway were performing in an intimate setting at Case Western Reserve University and a friend had tickets. It was a wonderful evening in a small room with a grand piano and about 30 students. Both Aretha and Donny played the piano, and the combination of Aretha’s soul-filled voice and Donny Hathaway’s mellow touch made for an evening that I’ll never forget. Aretha will always be the Queen of Soul.