Saturday, November 17, 2007

D. and I'll be departing the home abode today. We'll be off to build more memories! Since our flight leaves Ottawa at 0700 tomorrow, we will motor up to the capital city of Canada this afternoon and get a room in a no-tell-motel near the airport for tonight.
Tomorrow we fly to San Antonio ,Texas, where we will rent a car and drive the couple hours to Corpus Christi, Texas. Our son, the police officer, his companion, and their combined, 4 daughters and therefore are four grand-daughters, there reside.

We will stay there one week just making memories and getting a chance to do Christmas shopping for the Texas clan, meet L's family, spoil our girls, and the "piece de resistance": celebrate Thanksgiving Dinner. Our son J., and his companion K., will join us Monday through Thursday, and leave on Friday. The only downer will be the absence of our daughter M. and her beau J.. They are in money saving mode at this time in their life. (the whims of political life.)
Their jobs depend on who's sitting on the throne of State office.

Even though you aren't aware of it, there has been a half hour hiatus in the writing of this blog post due the fact that I was on the phone with above mentioned daughter. She informed me as we were say our au revoirs that yesterday she and J. received some presents in the mail that came from her brother J. and K. and consisted of wine and cheese and a wish for a great Thanksgiving.....Now, wasn't that the most thoughtful of gestures? I think so. Way to go K. and J.!!!!! We are all going to miss their presence at this Texas festival of thanksgiving.

A week from This Sunday, D. and I will drive back to San Antonio and I will attend my yearly anesthesia continuing Education meeting. In the past our granddaughters have been able to come and visit us for a couple days while we are there but perhaps not this year due to school, but we'll see. We've done this trip for Continuing ed. 5 or 6 years now and we never tire of the Riverwalk and the festivities in San Antonio. Last year we went to Tucson, AZ. for a mtg. It was due to a co-worker requesting the same time period off for a mtg. before I did. The mtg. in Az. was a terrific experience and if you recall, we made friends with a nice young couple, Scott and Michelle, from Ohio.

I am taking a laptop with me, so with any degree of perseverance, I'll meet the NaNoWriMo goal of 50,000 words by the end of November. Even if I don't, I'll have a great start on a novel and a story that I'm enjoying relating!

Home for a week at the Weston Riverwalk.

Back in 2 weeks!
a la prochaine,

Addendum: Just talked with J. and K. J informed us that he has been promoted to comptroller of his company with an attendant 20% raise. Yahoo...way to go J. As always ; we are so proud of your accomplishments. But, we love you 'cause your you.

I negotiated a 16% raise last week and thought I'd done well. As they say in Australia (so I'm told by an inside source ,
Robyn) Good-on ya to both rel and J.

Labels: ,

I Carry

In my backpack, briefcase, and
I carry many things;
A pen of course, but
A pencil too;
(For crossword puzzles)
Don't ya know.
A Moleskein for serious
Or not so serious;
As the case may be.
Also find a pad of Post It
and a
Modern PDA.
Sometimes an
I-Pod shows up
A jackknife hangs from
My belt,
And keys---two sets,
Jangle in various pockets.
Journals, articles, a printed copy
Of my "novel-in-progress"
Are tucked in there too.
All in all there is
Paraphernalia galore,
I Say;
What for?
Each and every, save a few,
Are memory aids.
The photos in my wallet,
The grocery list, and
The honey do.
When boiled down, it comes to
I carry memories!
Should these go, as so oft'
They do,
Then so go I----
For I, the man
You know, am but
the accumulation of my memories.



Thursday, November 15, 2007

I found this over at Corey's this morning;
What do you think?

rel ;)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

As of 1700 11/13/07 ...16,347... words

Things to do today:

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


There is a greater story here
That won't be told today.
Suffice to shed a sad, sad tear,
To a friendship gone astray!

Friendship's not convenient
Friendship isn't sore
Friendship is what stays behind
When convenient is out the door.

We met two score and ten or so;
At knuckles end we met.
And from that day, so long ago
Our bond is stronger yet.

In those same years with little fuss,
Another acquaint' was made.
Then circumstance rejoined us
Some thirty years gone fade.

One, a friendship of the heart,
A second was convenient.
One can ne'er be cleaved apart,
The other simply; rent.

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Sunday, November 11, 2007

Lest we forget!!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

# 84 - Left & Right

George Orwell's left-wing views and bohemian clothes led British police to label him a communist, but the MI5 spy agency stepped in to correct that view.

Photo: AP

I left the right place,

Turned right and on

The left Bank

Was the right cafe,

Where one could write

Leftist propoganda and

feel they could right

The world.

But if they were right,

What would be left of the

World we know?

Unsure of what was right,

I left the money, the

Journal, the cafe and

Set off to find the right

Path to salvation.

Was I right to persue

My passion, or in the

End would the status quo

be all that was left?

I bequeath to you this

Question: who is left right?

When ever was there not war?

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Installment 12

As he sat in the SICU waiting room at St. Barts, fluctuating between livid anger and cynical hope that his childhood goomba, Jack Creighton, would come out of this intact, Michael Calcatera was mulling over the events of the past few hours.

I’m sitting in the office discussing the situation in Pakistan with the team, wondering where the hell Seb is, and my cell trembles in my right hand pants’ pocket; “Mike, Jack. Been hit. Seb dead. Hurry”. Click. Buzzzzzz.

I’m like, WTF! Jack? Not my Jack. “Hold on a sec. guys, I’ve got to check something out on this call.” Hitting recall, he sees Jack’s home number comes up. He thinks to himself; “Damn it, I just talked to him last night. He’d just put that brat, Grace to bed, and said we could put our plan into action.”

Closing his cell, he looks at his team and says “folks, I’ve got an emergency that needs my attention right now. We’ll continue this discussion tomorrow. Tim, call the chief and tell him to call me in fifteen on my secure phone. Thanks.”

Tim says, “do you want one of us to go with you Mike?”

“No, I think for now its best if I check this out alone.”

“Is this a dangerous situation?”

“I don’t think so, at least not now.”

Taking the elevator to the company garage in the basement level, Mike checks his Glock and inserts a full clip. “Jack, Jack, Jack, what have you gotten us into now.” He thinks.

Mike goes to the office and signs out a black Honda, gets the keys from the attendant and walks over to bay 2 L and gets in the car.

He knows this city like the back of his hand. Fast, but not reckless, Mike Calcatera, weaves his way through traffic to his friend’s apartment.

His secure company phone vibrates and he answers by Bluetooth; “Godfather here.” “Godfather, Endpoint here, what’s the story?”
“Received message; councilor may be erased. Will check shortly and will call you with details.”

Mike ends the call and thinks now about the e-mail he’d received from Seb last night.

Jacky boy is doe-eye over his Gracie again, or, still, I guess is the better word. Apparently she’s left that overdressed camel driver in French tweeds. We’ll have to confirm, but if it’s true we can make Carrerbreu’s file active and move quickly to get him to the house in Croatia.
Talk more at conference tomorrow PM.
All for one and one for all,’

“That was Seb, neat and tidy. Move quick and efficiently, no frills, straight to business. He didn’t like Grace but he disliked her husband even more. He said that, that is why he recruited me to the agency 12 years ago. He said we’d keep me on the force as a cover, but he needed my head to understand how the criminal mind worked.” I was offended at first, but he said that he meant no offense, only that he admired my way of seeing the situation clearly and without too much emotion.”

He continued thinking;” I’ve got plenty of emotion now, but Seb’s right, I do see right to the heart of most situations. Ah, here we are, and look at that, a parking place: what do you mean officer? What fire hydrant? Here let me show you some ID. Heh heh, everybody has privileges according to their job.”

Climbing the fourteen steps to the door of Jack’s brownstone was like climbing Everest. He hurried as fast as his fifty pound overweight frame would allow him. Out of breath, he reached the door and using the spare key Jack had given to him years ago, he unlocked the door. Simultaneously opening the door, drawing the Glock from his belt holster and flicking off the safety, he stepped into the foyer. The archway to the living room was nine steps from the door, and on the left. Back to the wall, he peeked around the edge of the archway and scanned the room; Seb was lying on the cream colored couch, head askew against the light colored matching pillow, small dark spot, dead center of the forehead and a large blot of crimson/maroon staining the pillow. There, on the floor between the couch and the coffee table, lay Jack, unconscious but chest moving shallowly.

Listening for any sound he sidled into the room Glock ready. There didn’t appear to be anyone else present. Moving straight to Jack’s side Mike knelt down and put his fingers on the nearside of Jack’s neck over the carotid artery. He could feel a light thready and very rapid pulsation. Putting his cheek against Jack’s nose he could feel warm air touch his skin. He gently shook Jack by the shoulder and called his name. No response. Standing up and moving toward Seb, he took out his cell and dialed 911. He proceeded to follow the identical evaluation of his mentor but it was quickly evident that Seb had left the building.

The 911 operator answered and Mike directed her to send an ambulance to Jack’s address.

Taking out his secure cell he quick dialed the chief. At the same time he continued to search the apartment. In the bedroom he spotted a large red woman’s handbag. As he combed through the contents, the chief answered. After Identifing each the other by code, Mike said: Councilor erased. Important documents found to support our case. I’ll be in your office in one half hour.

Sorry; no blog entries, but putting all my writing time into a novel; you may remember Elodie and Jacques from Writers Island......................

Tentative title: Dream in a Bottle

Word count as of 0330, 8 November 2007: 9,408/50,000

This morning Elodie has a date......with a bird!


Tuesday, November 06, 2007


Corey, Christian, Rachel, Yann, Diane, And Bob
23rd September, 2007
South of France!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

#83 Money


This table charts the key U.S. financial indices by their last reported value and change since the most recent trading day opened.
Index Last Change
Dow 13,595.10 + 27.23
NASDAQ 2,810.38 + 15.55
S&P 1,509.65 + 1.21

Get quote by symbol or company

Money, it's what makes the world go 'round! Money, currency of one type or another, has been around for longer than I can remember. Anything that's been around for along time is bound to get get a bad rep, and money is no exception. You may have heard the expressions, filthy lucre, and "love of money is the root of all evil". These are both negative connotations to be sure. How can something so important get maligned so harshly?

When we were in college we did an experiment in microbiology class where we cultured the surface of coins in each of our own pockets. The results showed us emphatically that money was indeed filthy; covered with a multitude of germs and even included some germs we call pathogens. The government of the USA impregnates it's "paper" money and even the ink it's printed with, with antiseptic. The older the money becomes the more it degrades the antiseptic and the money becomes more "filthy". Do you think that has anything to do with the spread of colds?

In any event, I don't think that is what's meant in the bible: Titans 1:11 when money is referred to as "filthy lucre."

And then to boot in Timothy, 6:10. it says “For the love of money is the root of all evil.”

So for at least 2000 years we've witnessed money be chastised as a bad thing. I contend that money, an inanimate object, is incapable of being bad or good. It merely is, period. It's humanity, who puts too high a value on money, that is good or bad. Timothy seems to have gotten it right when he said "for the love of money...." Unfortunately we seem to value money more than life itself.

Take health care in this country for an example. If you have money, sufficient money that is, you can have access to health care. If you can afford health insurance, you can access the health care system. The greater your income, or the better you insurance the better level of care is available to you. WHY?!!!

Does an astronaut who flies to outer space get paid what a superstar baseball player gets paid? The ball player only has to perform his best 30% of the time. What would happen to the astronaut if he was batting 300 while in the stratosphere?

We give more money to people who are good players than we do to people who are good workers. Does that seem right to you?

It seems to me that we as a species, put our emphasis in the wrong place too often. We put value on entertainment rather than life and for that reason the majority of humanity suffers.

Too many do without while too many have much more than they need to be comfortable.

How much money is spent on gambling, excessive drinking of alcohol, recreational drugs, pornography, prostitution, car racing, race horses, Cars (hummers, Lamborginis, etc.) yatchs, and lets not forget a huge money sucking drain on humanity...WAR!!!!!

If I were made King of the world I would tax all of the above at a flat rate of ten percent and with those earnings I'd relieve all the suffering in the world.

Come on folks; it's about us, not the money.

Oops, I've got to cut this diatribe short so I can go purchase a lottery ticket...Maybe tomorrow I'll be filthy rich.

Friday, November 02, 2007

I've been having so much fun with Jacques and Elodie for the past three weeks over at Writer's Island that I've decided to participate in National Novel Writer's Month 2007 (NANOWRIMO). I started over from scratch yesterday and did 1702 words in an hour and a half. I'm using the same story line but it's now in the first person as opposed to the third.
I foresee a slight problem in the fact that I will be away for the last two weeks of November. I'll be in Texas at my son's home for Thanksgiving week and then we travel up to San Antonio, Tx., for an anesthesia continuing ed. conference. For NaNoWriMo we are supposed to write a 50,000 word, (175 page), novel in thirty days. The way I see it, I'll need to do most, if not all, of it in the first two weeks.....we'll see. I'm excited because I think there is a good story here and I want to see it play out. Plus, I'd like the satisfaction of proving to myself that I can write a novel.

In the mean time let me tell you about my birthday day from last month in the south of France:
On the twenty-first of September(not my birthday), D. and I made the acquaintance of a blog friend of mine when she and her husband joined us for drinks after diner at our chateau's dining room.
Corey from "Tongue in Cheek", and her French husband are the warmest, most engaging, down to earth people you could ever hope to meet in your lifetime! We warmed to each other immediately and that set the stage for a fantastic week in the south of France.
In the photo on the left is Corey sifting through treasures at a local flea market!
On the day before my b'day, D. and I had driven to the village where Corey lives and D. almost had a heart attack. We were unable to find a grocery in the little town of Nans les Pins near our chateau so we drove to the nearby village. To get there you must drive from the top of the mountain, where the chateau is located, to the valley where Corey lives. It only takes 3 minutes to descend the mountain, D. timed it...everytime, but you must negotiate thirty or more hairpin turns all the way down. Being my first time on this byway, I surely went slower than the posted speed limit, much to the chagrin of the drivers more familiar with the route. A couple of thimble brained drivers even passed me, adding greatly to D.'s and my apprehension. Over the course of the next few days and many more trips, I was beginning to feel more comfortable negotiating the turns and may have even done the speed limit the last time.

That said, Corey offered to pick us up at the chateau on the morning of the 23rd and we were to seek out a flea market in the area.
Corey arrived bright and early and joined us for coffee while we finished breakfast. On the road by eight AM, it was a bright sunny day and the first thing Corey says is; " keep a close eye on me, because I've been known to fall asleep while driving. Talking is no impediment to this narcoleptic happening either." The scary thing is that she was as serious as can be. Now, mind you , up until now, we've spent a total of 2 hours with this woman. Well, I'm happy to report that Corey never nodded off on any of our excursions. With plenty of conversation to occupy us, in no time, we arrived at the village where the flea market was taking place. We had to walk a few blocks on a dirt road to a humongous field outside of the village where, easily, between 100 and 150 people had set up "booths" to sell all manner of paraphernalia, from buttons and bows to paintings and all sort of what-not collectibles. I was interested to a point, but D. and Corey were in their glory. And the deals that the two of them made, made them happier than clams.

D. and Corey contemplating a woman's offerings. I think, here, Corey is inquiring as to the cost of a set of dominoes. She said they were too new to justify what was bing asked.

We spent the morning browsing and each of the girls made some wonderful deals and came away well satisfied with the day's haul. Corey dropped us off at the chateau around noon time. She was going home to spend some time with her daughter who was home from college in Aix and doing laundry. Some things are the same around the world. ;)
We, D. and I, went into Nans for lunch and a look around plus a visit to the travel office...but that's a story for another day.

Corey said she'd ask French husband to pick us up in the evening to bring us to their home for a diner to celebrate my birthday. Can you believe it? I'm still in awe of the hospitality and true warmth of this couple.

Next: The birthday dinner.