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How do I not post something for a month, busyness is the answer. Graduations, confirmations and obligations filled the bill. Passing miles beneath our tires as we make multiple trips to Connecticut sharing time with family and friends is part of the equation.
On the slim occasion I’d haul out the Mac to check email, blogs, weather and news, I’d get that look. I’m sure there’s a few of you out there that know what that look is, right? The look is usually accompanied with that one word, “really.” Just amazing how one word can say it all. Back goes the computer into the bag and it’s social interaction time. Not time for a Blog Rooster.
Speaking of Rooster, not me mind you, but the faithful protector of our flock for the past nine years. Casper was his name and he has passed to that great chicken coop in the sky. Casper was the most gentle of all our roosters over the years. He would alert the girls when trouble circled in the sky or lurched outside the fence line. He was pampered and lived the good life here on God’s little acre. Old age finally caught up with the old guy.
We have a grandson entering the National Guard, delaying college for a year and earning the education incentive$. Another grandson graduated from College. He is now a Creative Media graduate working in NYC. We have a set of twins going in diverse directions, Oregon and Delaware for higher learning. The twins are adopted grandchildren. They have a brother whom I’ve mentioned in the past and he will be a senior at the Air Force Academy this year. Another road trip coming up in May of 2018. I have a brother who got engaged, congratulations Rick. A granddaughter busy with a traveling softball team and another who is a gymnast who does gourmet baking, that’s just in Connecticut.
Back in Maryland we have a granddaughter who returns to Mississippi for her senior year @ MSU, a grandson entering Salisbury University and a granddaughter who just finished her first year of teaching.
Although we have not spent time with them of late, we have our eldest granddaughter, the USAF Captain and her Captain husband and four great grandchildren out in OKC. Time with them gets spent Face Timing via electronic media.
As any parent and grandparent knows, we swell with pride for those who grow after us. In all we’ve been blessed with three children, nine grands and four greats. We are so fortunate.
Once back home in May from VT and planted on the sand of the Eastern Shore we had the great Irish wedding of our good friends Ed and Alexis O’Leary as they married off their daughter Maddie to John Vilkus. I previously put out a post on this event. That was two weeks of the entire clan here on the shore visiting from such places as Kilkenny and Galway in Ireland and the Queens own London. They are a wonderful lot, an entertaining group full of song, fun and frolic. It’s never all about you, it’s always all about all of you. The Mrs and I have been fortunate in the past to share their family home in Kilkenney in years gone by. It was nice we could offer up a bed or two for this grand occasion. They and some tag along’s even spent an afternoon with us picking crabs and partying late into the night while being entertained with song by the one and only Famous Seamus. Our extended family is loved by us all.
Then there was the 4th of July, which in our little community is a large event with a parade, food, fun and games. HOT is the normal weather occurrence. The event has been taking place in the village for over thirty years. When the organizers say “You all come,” they all do. The local Boy Scout Troop color guard leads it off, followed by all those politicians leading our county and state representatives, sheriffs & troopers, Those running in local elections always make an appearance to garner votes in upcoming elections.
We have kids on bikes and every other mode of transportation, 4x4s, mopeds, getting pulled in wagons and just walking and looking patriotic in their Red, White and Blue. The Buffalo Soldiers always make their appearance and this year a local car club entertained us with a host of tricked up cars. Farmers and their equipment, so vital to this economy, roll out to show their stuff. Some of the tractors were from generations past. Horses and pets also grace the parade route.
And no parade would be without the local Fire Company showing off their pride. As the blare of the sirens echoed and those watching were greeted with tossed candy and Tootsy Roll lollipops, pride swelled in us all. This was America, and this is Allen and it’s our birthday. Thanks to the Lions, the Allen Asbury Methodist Church our Fire Company and all who volunteer from our community for a another great Birthday celebration.
After the parade everyone gathers at the Community Hall for hot dogs, burgers, home-made ice cream and good old down home eating and socializing. A baseball game usually occurs across the street. The wee ones will enjoy the bouncy house and someone is always selling one thing or another. Eventually the crowd will dwindle, folks will head off to other celebrations and perhaps go into the big town of Salisbury for Fireworks.
When the sun sets, and the lights are turned down low, the far off sound of sky rockets at night bursting in the air reminds us all that we are one.
Oh, I totally forgot to mention that the garage, turned into a workshop, which became the Annex and hosted many gatherings is now a guest house and has a new porch which was finished last week. Been busy, please excuse the absence. We even have indoor plumbing.
Wow, am I out of touch, and a bit tardy in my blogging of late. As far as out of touch, do you know today is 420, 4:20, or 4/20? I had no clue. Herself had the “Today Show” on this morning and they were filling their viewership with information on this historic day. I’m not too much into that show, it’s an I can’t stand Matt Lauer thing. I feel he’s a snipe, no not the bird, in his interviewing techniques. dictionary.com has a definition, #6 on their list as: to attack a person or a person’s work with petulant or snide criticism, especially anonymously or from a safe distance. Actually today wasn’t hard to take, Matt was off.
So if your interested in 4-20, check it out @: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/420_(cannabis_culture)
As for not posting, I’ve really been preoccupied with Ben, our Standard Poodle who turned six months old on 4-17, not blowing any smoke there (see 420.) Ben has had a rough time of it for the past few months. In mid January after noticing ear gunk we went to the vets and started meds and cleaning for a yeast infection in his ears. This quickly spread and an infection ensued and the poor guy developed the canine version of MRSA,
Five vet visits later after numerous testings, diet changes, special baths, antibiotics, Prednisone, probiotics, several ear washes and medications, we’re making progress. Along the way I’ve been up at least once each night to help Ben facilitate the act of micturition, that’s the act of urination. It seems the Prednisone increases thirst which brings about frequent urine evacuation. In other words, the poor dog was Peeing like a race horse and I, thanks to my Marine Corps training was his doorman. At times it was an hourly event, I was an expert with the Swifter tool when an accident occurred. I recently finished reading Steinbeck’s novel “ Travels with Charlie” and his poodle incurred the opposite malady while on their adventure.
We are now waiting on the vet to call and give us the name of the next food to try, food allergies are thought to be the culprit of the problems. The next food will be Hypoallergetic. Ben has a cousin in CT that has similar issues and is on a Duck diet. Her name is Belle. Ear issues are synonymous with Poodles by the way. Ben is my third after CoCo, best hunting dog ever and Maggie who was ever faithful for eight years. FYI, CoCo MiMi Cest of Celest By Heck, Margaret of Donegal and Benjamin Franklin Fiddler our current BFF tare the official and politically correct names.
Right in our backyard is Wicomico Creek and the Wicomico Yacht Club
We’re a fifty acre field, a patch of woods and a half mile walk to get to the Yacht Club, and we do it often. It is not uncommon to take a bit of the “Nectar of the Gods” with us
and enjoy the sun as it set over the water. This is a photo from one of those recent sunsets. It has long been said that water soothes the soul. Herself and I certainly feel that way. Check out this article from the Huffington Post as to why water makes you feel calm.
Granddaughter Samantha Has returned to Oklahoma and has been reunited with husband Zed who had been deployed to the east. Check out her blog @ https://adayinmylife.org/author/c12samb/ and read all about he reunification.
Jeff has returned from his adventures and has taken a weeks vacation to do some home repairs, Rock fishing and get his pontoon boat in shape for the boating season. He and Kathryn have settled on the name
Thanks to my Secret Santa, I and seven guests got to see the Salisbury University Lacrosse defeat Christopher Newport by a sore of 17 – 3. The viewing venue was from the President’s Box with a fine food spread, beverages and a great view of the game. Thanks Santa for a truly unique gift that was worth the wait to experience. Check out the new Stadium complex.
For the past few years herself has been supplying a quilt to the : http://creativelivingcommunityofct.org/ Our daughter in-law serves on the board of this agency and each year they have a fund raising dinner and auction. The below photo is this years contribution.
We’ve been doing some renovations in our Annex of late. We also did some spring cleaning and Pollen elimination in anticipation of Easter dinner. We hosted twenty eight guests on Easter and no one went home hungry.
So, I hope this helps to catch my readers up on what’s been gong on while I was remiss in putting a Blog. I’ll be back a bit sooner should Ben stay on his present course. We do have a few busy weeks coming up with a college graduation, confirmation and a wedding to attend as well as some frolicking time with a Clan from Kilkenny, Ireland. A Crab feast will be in order for that event.
In the meantime check out the following site for some phrase verbs for problems.:
To close I’ll say Happy Birthday to my son in-law Jeffery who will be celebrating his birthday with Kathryn this weekend at the National Harbor on the Potomac River.
Last week the Mrs. and I visited Giant, our local super market. Throughout this great country of ours we have these stores everywhere with different names. Living here on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, Salisbury in particular, we only have two choices, Giant or Food Lion. Food Lion was recently purchased by Giant for those who do not know. Giant by the way is owned by Royal Ahold, a Dutch company. They also own Stop and Shop, although they are not in our neck of the woods.
No Whole Foods, Publix, Albertsons, or Trader Joe’s in our neck of the woods. We were once told in an article in our local paper that a Harris Teeter would not be opening here as we were not sophisticated enough to warrant them coming here. Come to think of it, I never even saw an Editorial in the paper about that.
Royal Ahold, the designation “Royal” from Dutch Queen Beatrix in 1987, awarded to companies that have operated honorably for one hundred years. Well, I contend that they do not operate honorably and you only have but to go through the Self Check-out to prove this.
We went to the store to pick up a few items, not a lot mind you.The store was quite crowded, perhaps a snow storm pending? Every register had a line and there was even a line of several people waiting on Self Check Out. What the hell we thought, three people waiting, eight machines, be done in a flash, right? Wrong!
Step one, declare nationality. Think about it people, how often are we told, we are all one? At least Bernie Sanders’ says something like that. Not in a grocery store Mr or Ms politician. They also want to know if you brought your own bags, which we do. The provided plastic bags rip and of course environmentally, are a disaster. After telling the machine we have our own bags, it tells us to place bag on the proper space for bagging. Instantly we hear, “Remove item from bag and please scan.” Now we’ve put nothing in yet understand. I repeat the process, not once, but two or three times at least.
Lights, sirens, customer needs assistance, “Bad Boys, Bad Boys, What you gonna do when they come for you?”
Up walks a 18 or 19 something polite young man, most likely a Salisbury University student to provide assistance. S U is our local University by the way. “What seems to be the problem Sir,” he asks politely. I explain about the bag and scan question the robot uttered and he just smiled. He scanned his do all, I’m in charge here card and started my process all over again. “ Just start from the beginning sir, you’ll be good now.”
Our helper leaves and goes off to another flashing light. We remove the bag, place the bag back on the stand and hear “Remove item from bag and please scan.” My wife looks at me, rolls her eyes, much as she does when I have erred in one way or another. I clear my throat, as I’m told by my wife and children is something that I do when consternation is present.
I beat our helper to the problem, remove the bag and attempt to rectify the issue myself, wrong. There is now a prompt on my screen, “Please wait for assistance.” Yes, the light is flashing, and there’s that Bad Boys music in my head again. I glance around and see that I’m getting that, “ you stupid @#” after a brief wait. It appears there are several other morons getting assistance also.You dummy, visualizes from several folks in the wait line. I am now with furrowed brow. Back comes my helper.
On this occasion our aide stays with us, starts the process again for us, hits a button or two, places the bag in the holder, squaring it up all pretty like and begins. He in turn gets the same prompt several times. I’m starting to feel a bit better of myself. Finally he is able to scan an item and places it in the bag. “Your all set now sir,” he says. “Oops” I say. “Gotta put my reward # in.” Start over Rooster. Ok, everything is in properly, once again he double checks the bag. He neatly places the bag on it’s designated spot. “Ah Ha,” “Please remove item from bag and scan.” He’s a moron also people.
The young lad then proceeds to go into a Doctoral Dissertation about the lack of the machine being able to recognize bags other than what is plastic and hanging on the racks. Mind you now, my bag is a “Giant” bag, bought at this store. We begin once more. Bingo, after several more tries it works, finally we’re off and scanning.
I take a glance at the line, the lady in front has this look on her face that could commit murder. Steam is being emitted from her nostrils, her leg is driving her foot into the tiles, much like a bull about to charge the Matador.
I am truly in fear for my life. I look at her, point to myself, shake my head “Not me,” point back to the Robot and plead “it’s this thing.” She is not amused, I am in the spot light,“Bad Boys” chimes in my head.
I scan a few items and am now on a roll. Then the unthinkable happens, I now have to scan two bottles of wine. “Please wait for assistance.” Blue light special tuns on, I start to tremble and glance towards the raging bull standing in line. She looks at me in disgust, daggers are piercing me, thrust from her eyes. Over once again over comes this lad to verify this 72 year old, soon to meet his demise at the hands of this vile woman in line, is in fact over 21 and legally able to purchase the wine. We have a bottle of KJ Chardonnay and Raging Bull (HOW APPROPRIATE) Cabernet.
I’m finished, just have to get through scanning my card. I fumble for my wallet, pull out the card, push the necessary Credit buttons. God forbid I should push the Debit button, the Bank will charge me 2% to do that. Plus, I’ll most likely enter the wrong Pin on this fateful day. “REJECT,” Crap, I used my Sam’s club card. I glance around, feeling guilt like never before, I reach for my wallet again, knowing everyone is looking at me now and start over. I replace Sam’s card and pull my Rapid Rewards. Gotta get those points you know.
Finally it tallies, issues me my receipt, and I grab my one bag. It’s taken me longer this trip than purchasing a pre Thanksgiving meal for 25. One Bag, 7 items, two bottles of wine. As I turn to leave I’m face to face with “HER.” I smile and say, “I hope your experience with this machine is more pleasant than mine. Have a great Day.” She glares!
Please, make her experience be everything that mine was, payback you know.
“Royal Ahold,” yep, )( an appropriate name.
For some more on why Self Check-Outs don’t work: