Friday, July 27, 2007

Sweet ride

So, in 1995, I quit my job, went to Europe for 3 months, and moved back in with my mom & dad 'til I could get a job in the Boston area. This living-at-home plan began in the summer, and lasted a few months longer than I planned, but it was cool while it lasted. It seems like a lifetime ago.
Late that autumn, my brother finds a classic car he wants to buy. He drives it back from Taunton or wherever it was that night, and it dies at the rest area 20 miles from home. So, I hop into my car, drive a battery to him, he fires it up and gets home and I still get to go out that night. I don't remember where I went, but was f'n freezing that night, that much I remember, and I think this car didn't even have heat.
Two years later (1997ish) he decides he wants to fix it up. Car parts are all over the place at his house. Then it lives at the paint shop for 6 years or so. It needs a panel of some sort, so he spends a couple years trolling ebay, makes a bid last year, and drives to South Carolina with my mom to tow back this piece of rusted-out used-to-be-a-car thing, that just happens to have the one non-piece-of-crap body part that he needed, and the body gets finished. (On a sad note, his friend passed away before completing the job. But his son finished the gorgeous black paint shortly thereafter.)
For the last year or two he does everything else by hand on it, from the bumpers to the wiring to the engine to a new top. Everything. Monumental project. Car parts everywhere again. At one point I see it, and it has milk crates where the seats belong.

He fires it up for the first time in 10 years, a couple months ago. When the battery sparks back to the generator it doesn't blow up or anything. And the car starts. So, overall, it's a very exciting day.

He puts plates on it this week, not even knowing if the car is gonna go forward, backward, stop, steer, or exhibit any other car-like behaviors.

This, a project started when I was between real jobs and making $6.75/hr at the now-defunct Lenox Shops and looking to move to Boston, when Bill Clinton was still president, and before my brother's kids were even born, back in that other lifetime, is finally complete. Congratulations Darryl, it's gorgeous. I like the Red Sox Jimmy Fund plates too. Nice touch.

1967 Plymouth Belvedere Convertible

Thursday, July 26, 2007


Hey, the rules said I was supposed to be informed! Oh well, I found out anyway. Fun!

OK, so here are the rules, as posted on my tagger's blog Hit and Run

1. We have to post these rules before we give you the facts.
2. Players start with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
3. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
4. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.
5. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

Eight Random Facts About Myself

1. I would rather see the world than have a house.

2. I love doing my hair and makeup every day, even if I'm not gonna see anyone. Except for Sunday, when I often revel in my own funkiness and won't shower until right before I go to bed.

3. I don't want to have children (but am blessed with two wonderful nieces, lucky me!)

4. I am obsessed with getting the best answer on Yahoo Answers.

5. I think Suzy Q's are the best snack food that comes in a plastic wrapper with an expiration date far far off into the future.

6. I think Alex is the sexiest guy on Grey's Anatomy.

7. I have seen almost every episode of "What Not to Wear" but won't give up my big clunky shoes, no matter what Stacy and Clinton say. I'd rather wear bad shoes and have a smile on my face than great-looking shoes and a grimace.

8. I think I am going to become obsessed with watching Victoria Beckham (aka Posh Spice) now that she's in LA with her hot hubby who happens to be the most famous athlete in the world, because she is TRULY ridiculous. Truly.

I don't know 8 other bloggers, so I'm gonna tag the one I do know (OKAY, I break rules!)


The Gav Menagerie

(And check out Hit and Run, linked above. Fun read, inspirational gal. I always get a kick out of her posts! Even if she does like the Yankees.)

Friday, July 20, 2007

More free Red Sox!

So, Randy got us some free tix in a great section! I sure hope they win tonight, they've been on the usual July slide. Go Red Sox! Go Josh Beckett! Get those White Sox!
Off to the beach tomorrow with my sidekick Karen. Supposed to be about 76 with sun and some clouds. Should be nice enough, and we haven't had nearly enough beach time this year.
Just made plans to go to Nashville over Labor Day weekend with Karen and Kim. SO excited about a girly weekend away with my two best friends. Got tix for the Grand Ole Opry already (that's GOTTA be one of the places you should see before you die, right?) We're staying right downtown near where all the cool music bars are too. Can't wait to wear my stylin' cowboy boots I got in Austin last year, without socks and with a denim skirt. Can't rock that look in Boston, although it's ok with jeans around here.
Hm, what else. Oh, brought the Emmie kitty in for her annual exam and shots. She hates it there. We have an awesome vet though. She's a little on the plump side (11.7 lbs on a small frame) so we have to reduce the food intake even more. Got her a kitten, feed her better (and less) food, and she hasn't lost an ounce. I'm never gonna get any sleep with these hungry kitties. Plus she has, shall we say, loose output issues, so I gotta go back on the hunt for an alternative protein source (ie, not chicken) and try it for 3 months. And you all know how paranoid I am about the stupid pet food stuff. Oh well. She looks like she's gonna have babies, and she was spayed ages ago.
That's it for now. Gotta put on my red sox shirt now.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

I have come to the conclusion

...that blog surfing sucks. Really. Click on Next Blog 10 times (OK make it 100) and see if there's anything interesting to read. Where are the interesting people? It's all links to ads and stuff.

On the other hand, I can identify at least 8 foreign languages, but I can't read them. I bet they're interesting though! :-)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Vacation and Quebec City

I finally took a summer vacation! Usually it's so nice around here in the summer, and I don't like to take time off unless I'm going somewhere, but I'm up to 4 weeks off per year now and I carried one over from last year, so I figured, why not? 'Cause no one else was gonna be around anyway.
So, I took last week off.
Friday, I got out early, played in the dirt, working on my flower boxes. Randy had his big sales meeting party so he wasn't around, but Karen came out. Yay! We grilled and gabbed and played Yahtzee on the deck. Always love that. Randy got home at 3:00AM (bless him, took a cab!) and had a blast at the party. He rode home in a bright orange suit with weird goggles 'cause it was a theme party (The Future). Sure wish I could have seen the look on the cabbie's face.
In the morning, Karen and I drove up to Hampton Beach for a day of fun in the sun. It was just about as perfect as we'd hoped. In the afternoon we poked around a couple shops, had a couple apps and a couple beers and came home for more time on the deck.
Sunday, Karen and I went into Boston to the annual Boston Chowderfest, a big competition for the honor of serving the best chowder in Boston. I've lived here 13 yrs and have never done it. It was fun, we tried 10 chowders and cast our votes, which didn't win (Christopher's of Maynard did). Poked around Faneuil Hall/Quincy Market area, ate some ice cream, then she headed back to Albany. Always love it when she comes to visit!
Monday and Tuesday I hung around the house, caught up on boring stuff >yawn< but I also got to read and sit in the sun and that always makes me happy! Randy and I skipped out on the 4th celebration in Boston (it rained).

On Thursday we drove to Quebec City, checked into the hotel, and realized that Q.C.'s big Summer Festival was about to take place outside the door of the hotel. But first, we had to check out the city from the 22nd floor's revolving restaurant, which offered great views of the St Laurence River and the Old Town. Had a couple bevvies, marched out the door, heard the music, and decided, $30 CDN is NOT bad for 4 venues offering 4 bands each night so we purchased buttons, walked through the fence down the street from our hotel and checked out this cool band we'd never heard of called Frequency, from LA.

Summer Festival

I checked out the listings and saw one of my faves, Derek Trucks Band was going to play at 9:30. (Derek Trucks is the son of one of the Allman Brothers Band members). So, we hoofed to the next site, grabbed some dinner and listened to a band, and 1/2 hour later were rockin' out to one of the best young guitarists out there.

Now, a couple things you gotta love about this festival.
1) Yeah you can stand outside the fences and hear the bands, but the sound and show is much better 5 rows from the stage
2) There were staff selling Molsons from coolers, milling through the crowd so you didn't have to go wait in the beer line!
Anyway, great shows. Followed up with a couple cool places in the Old Town, then back to the hotel.

Friday we got up and walked to the Old Town, a nice short walk away. We checked out the Chateau Frontenac, which is QC's landmark, then walked around the different streets, checked out the churches and squares.

Then, we walked down the side of the cliff to the arts district and Lower Town. We saw where QC was established. After this we went to the Museum of Civilization and saw all sorts of weird stuff about Dragons, Tintin, and the biggest display of books under glass you'd ever want to see. The cool part of the museum was this History of Quebec stuff but boy, there's nothing like a good set of historical books with explanations in French to get your blood flowin'.

A little show at Place Royale.

Some dinner that night at the Voodoo Grille:

They even had some live music for us. And the food & wine were AWESOME.

Saturday we went to this cool museum that showed us the history of the French and the English in Quebec, very cool display and only about 35 minutes long. Much more riveting than dragons and books.

Then we took a boat tour of the St. Lawrence and learned all about the grain depot and the paper factory, both fascinating locales on the water. Seriously though, some of the views ARE very nice, although I think you gotta be careful on boat tours, you never know what you're gonna learn about that you really don't give a rat's ass about.

Best view from the boat tour. I recommend the ferry to Levis over this tour. Save yourself about an hour of stuff you don't wanna hear about.

Saturday night, checked out more music (MAN it was packed on Saturday, but the guys with the coolers were still walking around!) and had some dinner in the Old Town.

Sunday we drove out to Montmorency Falls. Taller than Niagara, but not as wide. Very pretty though.

Hopped back in the car at 10:40am, figuring 3 hours to the border, 3.5 - 4 hours from there to get home. First 3 hours were easy sneezy. Approach the border and realize, we're gonna be here a LOOOONNNNNG time. Stuck there for 2 hours, Holy Moly. Our only entertainment was 3 Vermont State Troopers pulling over matching cars over and over. So we finally cross the border, get some gas, warn the northbound travellers to slow down or get pulled over, then not 10 minutes later, all joyful at 80 MPH with no traffic, I GET PULLED OVER. Crap!
We'll, he runs my license and Randy's registration, scribbles out a warning and hands it over. WHEW. But, lesson learned. DO NOT warn others about cops pulling over cars. It WILL bite you in the ass.
So, we're thinking we're home free. Maybe we'll be home by 6:30 or so. But NO, cops everywhere and LAKE REGION traffic outta New Hampshire conspire against us and we don't get to our humble abode until 8:00pm. Holy moly, over 9 hours on the ride home.

But, we had a great time on our trip, and I loved my vacation.