Category Archives: Before leaving the US

Worth the wait


Waiting for that pretty woman

Who knew we’d have to wait in line to get into the Everglades? We’d already driven through them for an hour or so when we arrived at the entrance to Everglades National Park where a static line of cars eager to get in meant that we had to wait another hour just to get a parking place. With my lifetime Senior pass, the entrance was free and It didn’t take long for our first photo opportunity to appear. Since the Broadway musical Pump Boys & Dinettes has been the theme for this vacation, the immediate words that popped to mind were “I’m going to send home postcards, the cutest ones I can find; especially the ones where the alligator is about to bite the pretty woman’s behind.” Read the rest of this entry

Breakfast at Tiffany’s


Morse Museum in Winter Park, FL

It was closer to lunchtime but we were definitely with Tiffanys; a bunch of Tiffanys. Today we were in Winter Park, Florida, just north of Orlando, to see the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum that has an entire wing devoted to works by Louis Comfort Tiffany. They have examples of every kind of art he produced including jewelry, pottery, paintings, and of course leaded-glass lamps. The building’s Park Avenue location made it ideal for a stroll along the tree-lined street trying to decide which of the many restaurant options to choose before seeing the exhibition. Read the rest of this entry

Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em

China cabinet

China and crystal behind lock and key

My father was in the Navy during World War II and one of the expressions he came home with was “Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em; bum ‘em if you don’t”. He would hear those instructions whenever it was time for a break and it was safe to light up without alerting the enemy to their position. In those good ‘ole days sailors were issued a daily ration of cigarettes. My interpretation of that phrase today might be closer to “use it or lose it”, “tomorrow’s not guaranteed” or the more pleasant “eat dessert first”. Read the rest of this entry

Spin us a yarn

Yarn bags

Yarn for miles

Although this photo might look as if the trash collectors have gone on strike or perhaps that there’s a waiting list to get into the morgue, it’s really much more tame. It’s yarn, 24 bags of yarn, almost 1000 pounds. Yes, we finally cleared out Bill’s design studio in the bonus room over the garage and this is what’s left. Last week he sold off the last of the knitting machines and those lucky buyers get to return this weekend to collect these rolls of soon-to-be fabric. Not to worry, there’s plenty going to France but that’s already been boxed up, and there’s the rub. Read the rest of this entry

Let them eat meat

Empty freezer

This freezer used to be full.

Marie Antoinette is credited, perhaps erroneously, with suggesting that if the starving peasants had no bread they should eat cake instead. Since we’re trying to use up all of the remaining food in our house these days there’s neither bread nor cake left but there’s still plenty of meat. You can have steaks of many varieties and thicknesses, chops, a roast, ham slices, salmon fillets, chicken breasts, and even an 18-pound turkey. No carbs, just all protein ready for a quick weight loss diet. Bring on the bacon! Read the rest of this entry

Holiday home for home

Packing crate

Bill put the puzzle pieces together.

For many years we have rented a variety of accommodations for vacations through one of the online booking services for homeowners who rent out their places. It’s given us the chance to spend time in a riverside cabin, a lakeside bungalow, an oceanfront condo, an Irish castle, and a couple of French chateaux. For the last few days we’ve been in Atlanta at a house with a theater, a British pub, a gym, a steam shower, and lots of other amenities that really made it feel like home. Oh yeah, it IS our home…or rather it WAS. Read the rest of this entry


Visa application

Visa application

Coming up with the name for today’s post was rather fun for a couple of reasons. The first was the choice of titles since it has to do with getting a visa. Since the French consulate in Miami accepts credit cards to pay the 99 euro fee, it could have been “Visa for Visa”. A takeoff on the expression “easy-peasy” since this whole process went very smoothly once we got to the consulate brought to mind “Visa(y)-peasy”. And of course the original French vis-à-vis that we’ve adopted into English meaning, among many things, “face to face”, would have certainly worked since we had to apply in person at their office that looks out onto Biscayne Bay. Instead I chose this one word that at first glance might not seem to have anything to do with today’s topic, but that’s the other reason why naming it was fun. Read the rest of this entry