Monday, August 31, 2015

Sloooow Going

It's like pulling taffy today. The words and sentences flowing out of my brain, that is. Maybe it was all the fun I had this weekend—a community music concert in the park on Saturday and a community festival on Sunday. Maybe it was wearing a hat while hanging out in the full sun for two days in a row. Maybe it was that delicious 10-ounce glass of Gillespie Brown ale handcrafted by Twisted Manzanita that I drank yesterday afternoon.  Maybe it's simply that my brain is tired.

Let's see how I am tomorrow.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Random Scenes: Other People's Junk

“Panties!” the middle-aged woman exclaimed, working her way against the stream of incoming buyers and gawkers. A couple stepped aside when she grumbled, “No respect at all!”

The petite woman carefully placed her estate sale purchases in the back of her prized green 1957 Chevrolet truck. She flipped open a velvet blue lace fan and cooled herself. She wondered who in her right mind would want to buy a dead lady’s panties.

“Hey Midge!” shouted her friend who called herself Lara today. Midge strode over to pick up the bags and baskets beside Lara.

“Lots of great stuff,” Lara said. “Did you see that Whitman copy of Spin and Marty?”

“I would've bought it, if it wasn't falling apart,” said Midge.

Lara nodded. “They should’ve just dumped it. Quite a lot of stuff they should’ve burned or taken to the dump.”

“No kidding,” said Midge. “They were even selling. . .”

“You’ll never guess what I bought!” Lara said at the same time.





“What are you going to do with a dead woman’s panties?”

The bright red haired wigged woman giggled. “They’re not what you think, Midge. They aren’t the sensible grandma panties at all.” Lara opened a bag. “Look at this beautiful handcrafted lace.”

“Are they brand new?”


“Then no, thank you,” said Midge, opening the door to her truck.

“Party pooper,”said Lara.

“Yeah, yeah, don’t get your knickers in a bunch. There’s a barn sale up the road, I hear.”

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Gotta Laugh

This is what I saw in one of the Mexican grocery stores in town this morning.

Hasta maƱana.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Ninang Pat's Hollyhock

Pretty pink hollyhock, isn't it? It's part of the second growth from Ninang Pat's hollyhocks. She cut the plants back last month. She was surprised to see more grow. Ninang Pat gave me some seeds for red hollyhocks. Hopefully, they'll grow for us.

Ninang is the Ilocano word for Godmother.

When I was baptized as a baby a long time ago, I had the good fortune of having six godparents—three ninangs and three ninongs (godfathers)—formally sponsor me. Informally, I had twelve godparents because the spouse of each godparent is also considered a godparent. But, actually, I had 9 or 10 godparents, because one or two of the ninongs were bachelors. Have I told you this before?

With all those godparents, I was not spoiled with lots of gifts, although one bachelor ninong was very generous with candy when he came  to visit. Ah, the fattening of Susie.

Ninang Pat is the last of my godparents. She married Ninong Pablo when I was three. For the longest time, I was confused as to what to call her. Sometimes I called her Auntie Pat. Other times, I called her Ninang when the Mama reminded me.

I'm no longer confused. It's great to still have a ninang, especially Ninang Pat. It's another thing that tricks me into thinking I'm not that old. Yet.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Pacific Ocean

My Alphabe Thursday theme: Places I've Been

It's  hot right now—99 degrees. Yes, I know, it's hotter somewhere else. But, I'm a baby. Once, I finish this post, I'm going outside to stand in the shade and let the warm breeze cool me down, if that's possible. It being hot, I shall think about being by the ocean. And, in my world, that's the Pacific Ocean. Except for seeing the Atlantic Ocean for two weeks in 1975, the Pacific Ocean is the only ocean I know.

Fortunately, the Pacific Ocean is a 40-minute trip away. When I was a kid, the parents would pack us up and head for the beach in Pacific Grove. Sometimes every weekend. I was told that our family would often meet up with a bunch of Filipino families at the same beach. This was when I was a very young child before I started remembering things. Although I do recall a scene at the ocean of an uncle saying in a very worried voice, "Whose bleeding?" Then someone saying, "Look at Susie's foot."

Monterey, California

Capitola, California

Marina, California

Davenport, California

Santa Cruz, California

Pacific Grove, California

Until later. . . .

It's Alphabe Thursday time, which is hosted by the sweet Mrs. Jenny Matlock. To participate or check out what other bloggers are writing about the letter O, please click here.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Happy Birthday, The Mama!

We will celebrate the Mama's 90+4 birthday by eating chicken feet, fried shrimp with heads, chow mein, sesame balls, and whatever else suits the Mama's fancy, while we watch Shirley Temple movies. And, when she says "Let's take a break," she will probably go into her garden and plant a few flowers.

I love the Mama.

I am sharing the Mama with Our World Tuesday

Monday, August 24, 2015

Sweet Distraction is called Molly the Cat

What happened? My serious—as opposed to maybe I'll do it—To-Do-List got very long just now. Yuck. All I can do is do what I can. And, stop now and then and play with Molly the Cat. That's very important for my sanity.

I like this photo of Molly. Can you tell it was taken upside-down?  Molly seems to like the camera that way. By the way that fleshy stump next to her is my leg.

Until tomorrow.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Long, Lanky, and Loves Rosemary

This cute bug dropped by as I was working in the front garden this morning. I have no clue what he or she is. Nor where it came from. I suppose it flew onto the rosemary bush.

Next thing I knew the bug was chomping away on the rosemary! 

Okay, a Google search of rosemary-eating bugs showed round beetles. Nothing long and lanky as this dude or dudette.  Anyone have an idea?

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Getting the Best Picture

Yesterday morning, I was being resourceful in front of this building, which once-upon-a-time was the hospital in Hollister. It was in fact the place where I was born, one of many babies that came into the world between 1907 and 1962. Today, the building is home to various offices and shops. Probably a few ghosts, too. 

Anyway, back to yesterday. I was lying on the bottom steps trying to take a good picture of the huge trees that line the sidewalk in front of the old hospital. I was doing as someone said to me about getting one or all five trees in a picture, "Be creative."

Imagine what the drivers passing by must've thought.  Or, the Mama, if she had seen me.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Pink Geranium in Black and White

It's The Weekend in Black and White, hosted by Dragonstar.  Click here to participate or to check out other black and white photos by blogging photographers around the world.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Niles Canyon Railway

My Alphabe Thursday theme: Places I've Been

Toot! Toot! Allllll Abooooarrrrrrrrd!

Last year, the Husband and I took a ride on the Niles Canyon Railway, a living museum that runs through the gorgeous Niles Canyon in the San Francisco Bay Area. We rode in historic train cars pulled by a vintage diesel engine. It was about a 90-minute round trip between two small historic towns, Niles (which is now part of Fremont) and Sunol (which is off of Highway 680).

The Niles Canyon Railway is operated by volunteer conductors and engineers. They're part of the Pacific Locomotive Association, a non-profit organization. The volunteers in this group rebuilt the line that was once part of the transcontinental railroad. The volunteers continue to obtain and rebuild train cars. Near the Sunol depot is the train yard where the cars are stored and worked.  One of the association's objectives is to provide the public with a sense of what riding trains was like in small communities throughout the United States once upon a time.

You can sit either indoors or outdoors on the train. On good weather days, the outdoor seats are very popular. We took indoor seats and once the train was on its way, we walked towards the front to outside cars where you can stand and gaze at the passing scenery.

Niles Canyon Railway schedules several trips on Saturdays and Sundays. You can get on at either the Niles or Sunol station. If you time it right, you can get off at one station, explore the town or eat at a restaurant, and then get back on another train. 

I like starting our round trip at Niles because afterwards we can wander through antique shops. Not that I buy anything. If you're a silent film fan, you'd especially like hanging out in Niles. Between 1912 and 1916, many silent films were made in and around the town, including ones by Charlie Chaplin and Bronco Billy. Check out the Niles Film Museum for details.

Here are a few more photos from our train ride.

Today is the letter N at Alphabe Thursday, hosted by the lovely Mrs. Jenny Matlock. Click here to join in or to read other N posts.

Day 46 with Tilda-Hilda

Today, I was out with Tilda-Hilda for about two hours doing errands and taking photos. I was getting on and off Tilda-Hilda a lot. I won't be surprised if later today some of my muscles protest soreness for being awakened. Good.

Altogether, Tilda-Hilda and I pedaled nearly 5 miles to and from and around downtown. I sweated, which is why I'm counting this as a workout. With all the picture-taking I was doing, I forgot to take one of Tilda-Hilda.  Hence, the photo of her happily back home. 

Until the next ride.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Good. The Random. The Fun.

Hello. I'm participating in a new weekly meme today.

The Good. The Random. The Fun.  It's a Monday meme hosted by Random-osity. You blog about a good, random, and fun thing that happened in the past week. Yes, I know today is Tuesday. What can I say.


My high school graduating class—San Benito High School (aka Hollister High School) Class of 1971—established a scholarship about nine years ago. We have the distinction of being the only alumni class at the local high school to sponsor a scholarship, thanks to Rudy, Debbie, and Debbie who had the vision, heart, and diligence to make it happen. In the last eight years, we've given $14,000 in scholarships to 10 Baler graduates. (Baler, or Haybaler, is the high school mascot.) Whooo-hooo!

On Saturday we held our annual Class of 1971 Scholarship fundraiser in town. It was another successful luncheon, silent auction, and raffle. Each year, we get a bigger turnout with newer faces showing up. It felt great seeing old and new friends. I like to think that everyone had a wonderful time.


The sun's light reflecting on trees as it was saying good-night.


"You have a different idea," said the Mama.

"About what?" I asked.

"My birthday."

This year for the Mama's birthday, the Husband, Molly the Cat, and I decided to give the Mama a present a day. Sometimes the gift is funny (a package of gum), pretty (a bracelet), or useful (boxes of tissue). It may be food, a handcrafted item, a photo, a piece of clothing, and whatever I think floats the Mama's boat.  The Husband and Molly the Cat have given me carte blanche, within reason, to purchase or make the presents.  And, that's a lot of fun for me.

Each morning at breakfast the Mama opens her present, looks at it, and then rewraps it. She says that she will unwrap them again on her actual birthday. I love the Mama.

Head over to Random-osity's blog, to check out other posts about The Good. The Random. The Fun. 

Monday, August 17, 2015

Day 45 with Tilda-Hilda

A few weeks ago, a young boy was run over by a bus a couple blocks away from our street. He was riding his bicycle. I don't know what the particulars were. I can only think that both the boy and the driver did not pay attention at the same moment. It was unfortunate. Now, at that spot is a memorial for the boy.

I thought of that event this morning as I rode in the bicycle lane on a main road. As I approached intersections, drivers moved into the bicycle lane so that they could turn right. One driver didn't even signal her intent. She abruptly jumped in front of me. I rang my bell and called out, "You asshole." A walker on the sidewalk said, "You need a bullhorn." Her companion said, "Be careful."

Indeed. It takes two not paying attention at the same moment to have an accident. I don't plan on having one. Nor do I plan on giving up my morning rides.

Today, Tilda-Hilda and I rode for 53 minutes, pedaling about nine-and-a-half miles.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Summer Domestic Diva Challenge -- Two Down!

Hurrah! I completed item#1 on my list of seven things to do before the summer ends.

The Husband has his second tunic. It sports a couple of boo-boos. One pocket is lower than the other. And, there's a triangle of fabric missing in the interfacing. I cut it out as I was sewing because the fabric was overlapping in the oddest way.  I should've had more faith in what I was doing. We'll see how the tunic holds up with each washing.

The blue print on the pockets and on the sides looks weird. What can I say other than it brings out the happiness of the shirt.

The Husband is so cool.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Day 44 with Tilda-Hilda

It felt so good riding with Tilda-Hilda this morning. The last time we went out was 11 days ago. My left knee was being a bear, so I stayed off it and took anti-inflammatory pills. The knee feels a bit stiff right now. Tilda-Hilda and I pedaled a wonderful 8.5 miles in 47 minutes. I felt like I could've gone on farther and further.

See ya tomorrow.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Time Flies. . .

When you have much to do. Yup. Time flies. Fly, fly, time.

Within the next six hours, I plan to do this:

Finish the Husband's tunic. All I need to do is attach the sleeves and sides, then hem it up.

Make an appetizer.  The Husband and I are going to a party tonight. Fun. Maybe I'll make cheesy olive balls. They're easy to make, but that means going to the store for olives and cheddar cheese.

Put together a photo collage.  It's for a luncheon fundraiser tomorrow. I could probably do that after the party, if I print the photos beforehand. Yeah, that's the ticket.

Get this post done.  I threw this in so I can feel like I'll have accomplished something once its published.  Always look for the positive, I say.

Thank goodness, I finished reading my novel last night, otherwise I'd forget about doing these things I plan to do. Enchanted  August by Brenda Bowen.  Just like the title, the story was enchanting.

I could go for either a cup of coffee or a lovely cocktail.  That's not going to happen. So, I'll just pretend to smell the flowers.  See ya.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Moss Landing

My Alphabe Thursday theme: Places I've Been

Moss Landing, California is a fishing village with over 200 residents. From the photo, it doesn't look like a quaint fishing village, but believe me it is. It has a few great antique shops and restaurants. This photo is of the harbor and the more commercial part of Moss Landing.

Moss Landing is located on Highway 1, about 15 miles to the north of Monterey. It stands at the mouth of Elkhorn Slough, which is a fun place for hiking, birding, and kayaking.

I have three wonderful memories of Moss Landing.
  1. Eight years ago, the Husband and I did a kayaking tour with friends on Elkhorn Slough. That was the first time we went kayaking. At one point, we paddled by a wall of pelicans. They were not fazed at all. They did not seem to move a muscle. "Yup, there go more humans."
  2. In the early 1990s, the First, Late Husband and I floated down the slough on a wildlife viewing tour. That was my introduction to Elkhorn Slough and the beauty of wetlands. It was also the beginning of the final adventures with the First, Late Husband.
  3. Long, long ago, the Only and Older Brother and I were sitting in the car, while the parents said their long goodbyes to friends. "Do you know what they do in that building?" the Brother asked, pointing at the monstrous plant with its amazingly tall towers. "That's where they make M&M candy."
Yes, I believed the PG&E plant produced M&Ms for a very long time. Whenever I pass the plant, I like to think the Only and Older Brother was telling the truth.

Today is Alphabe Thursday hosted by sweet Mrs. Jenny Matlock.  To join the weekly meme or to read other M posts, please click here.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Working Out the Laziness

I'm feeling lazy. It may be because I haven't pedaled Tilda-Hilda in a week. Soon, though, we'll be out again. Perhaps tomorrow. Definitely tomorrow, even if it's around the block.

Since I've been feeling lazy, I decided to start working on one of my seven things to do before the summer ends. The other day, I opened my fabric stash and came up with a color combination for the Husband's second tunic.

I'm patchworking a bit of blue with the brown kalidescope print. Although the two prints felt right together, they looked weird at first. Now, that I've finished sewing the patchworks together, I don't think the colors or the prints clash. Hopefully, I'll have time today to sew the tunic.

'This may be a very cool tunic or an ugly one," I said to the Husband.

"I don't care," he replied. "I'll wear it anyway."

The Husband is a sweetheart.

I'm linking up with Our World Tuesday. To join in or check out other participants, please click here.