rebecca_in_blue: (happy smile)
I rode my bike to the library today! I ride my bike to the much smaller downtown library all the time, but today I biked to the much larger one. It's much closer to our apartment, but you have to go through some heavy traffic to get there, and I'm a big believer in safe biking and not crossing busy streets if I can help it. But it's been so cold this week (almost like Sara and I brought that cold weather back from Arkansas with us!) and today was so warm and sunny that I decided to try it. I love being able to ride my bike to the library; maybe this will inspire me to pay my library fine, which, once again, is pretty high. Aunt Carla's house is on the way to the library, so maybe I'll bike there sometime.

I love being able to ride my bike, period. It's a way to slow down and notice all the cool and beautiful little things that you can never notice from a car. It's a chance to focus on the journey, rather than just the destination. That's what I love about riding my bike to services (which, unfortunately, I couldn't do today -- it was just too chilly after the sun went down). It makes me really see and appreciate the beauty of God's creation. It gets me out of my harum-scarum weekday mindset and into a Shabbat state of mind.

For dinner last night, I had a pulled pork sandwich with pickles and pickled onions, and Sara made yummy frozen cannolis for dessert. Then we watched Adventures in Baby-sitting (one of the few movies that I could probably watch over and over) while I crocheted plarn. Fun times, y'all. I have to log off and go to bed now -- waking up early tomorrow morning for religious school!

Happy February!
rebecca_in_blue: (subtle sigh)
I had a pretty busy (and mostly fun) weekend here. On Friday night, our temple enjoyed the most wonderful Shabbat service with Marshall Klaven, our guest rabbi from the Institute of Southern Jewish Life. We also used him as an excuse to host the most delicious Shabbat dinner. There was brisket, kugel, challah, brownies, and Rebecca ate almost the entire saucer full of lemon slices that people were supposed to put in their ice water! I biked to services for the first time since last fall (I think it was the first time I'd biked all year, period -- it's been so darn cold!) and I can't wait until the weather is warm enough that I can do it regularly again.

Jacob (Sassy Jewish Grandfather #3) had set up a large screen in the social hall, and during dinner, we watched a compilation of clips of local news coverage of our temple from the '90s and early '00s. There were segments about our annual corn-beef sandwich sale and Hannukah latke dinner, among other things. I almost died laughing when I saw the hairstyle that one Sassy Jewish Grandmother wore during the '90s, and I saw the same hat stand and silverware holder in our social hall that we still have today! I wonder how old those things are? Also, right before services, one couple in our temple got officially engaged! He proposed to her right there in the temple, and every old Jewish lady in the place started bawling. It was a very special evening.

On Saturday, my mom and I saw Sassy Jewish Grandfather #1's latest play in a theater downtown. He's playing Morrie in Tuesdays with Morrie, and he was so good. The play was a bit too sappy for my taste, though. Mom read the book and liked it, which I think was the only reason she agreed to go (she's not keen on meeting anyone from the temple). Practically the whole congregation was there, because none of us wanted to miss Rabbi Klaven's service and come on premiere night. I tried to hang around and talk to them after the play, but Mom was practically shoving me out the door.

And on Sunday, I got together with Briana again. Can you guess what we did? That's right, we walked the mall again. *sigh* She did seem less bored out of her skull than usual, though. I was just irked that every store seemed to be playing the Rihanna song "Diamonds." Ugh, I got so sick of it. Anyway, I'm hoping that later this month or next month, we can go to one of the Mardi Gras events around town. I just don't know.

From the mall, I went straight to the hospital (yeah, that was a change of scene) to spend the night with Mrs. S again. It was very stressful and exhausting. I collapsed into bed as soon as I got home, and stayed there until it was time to go to work. I hope she gets better soon, because I really don't want to spend the night there again, but I also don't think I could say no. I keep thinking that as hard as it is for me to spend the night in that recliner, it has to be way worse for her elderly husband. Ugh.

But there is good stuff to look forward to this week -- tomorrow, another new episode of NCIS, and on Wednesday, going to the movies with Sara!!!
rebecca_in_blue: (dropped jaw)
Rebecca was involved in a head-on collision on her bike today. En route to the library, I went a bit too fast around a turn where the sidewalk was bordered by high hedges, so I couldn't see what was coming. Well, it turned out to be a guy on his speeder. We both had our headphones in and couldn't even hear each other. I saw him a few seconds before he saw me, but I still had no time to turn or brake. He fell over into the hedges, but we were both okay.

The fall weather here has been so nice and cool. I biked home from the library with a good new read in my basket, cooked myself some green bean casserole for dinner, and sat down in Tovah's chair to watch a new NCIS. Last week's Recovery left a bad taste in my mouth, but tonight's episode was darn good!


Rebecca loves Ducky and 10x03 "Phoenix!" )
rebecca_in_blue: (red riding hood)
The High Holy Days can be stressful (especially when the Season 10 premiere of NCIS falls on Yom Kippur -- ugh!) but they can also make Rebecca very thankful to be Jewish. Rosh Hashanah meant a lot to me this year. In a way, it makes more sense to have a new year now, instead of in January, which I think is leftover from being a kid and always starting a new school year in the fall. And it doesn't hurt that the weather is infinitely nicer now than it ever is in January. Anyway, I'm thankful to have an opportunity to celebrate another new year and another fresh start, and I'm trying to make the most of it. So far, I've stuck to my goal to ride my bike more, and it's making a great difference in my mood. I hope to get in as much bike-riding as I can before winter.

And now, a recap of the last few days. )

Two little things: I got my hands on a big orange plastic bag at work, and I immediately cut it down into plarn! I can't wait to crochet it into my blanket. And on the suggestion of a new coworker, I tried cooking Velveeta Cheese Hamburger Helper instead of regular Hamburger Helper (which I eat for dinner about once a week) and it was so good.

FIVE ... DAYS ... LEFT UNTIL SEASON 10 OF NCIS!
rebecca_in_blue: (dozing off)
And have I fallen so far, and is the hour so late
That nothing remains but the cries of my hate?
The cries in the dark that nobody hears
Here where I stand at the turning of the years

 - "Valjean's Soliloquy," from Les Miserables

Shabbat shalom is the greeting for Sabbath peace, but Rebecca sure wasn't feeling any of that on Friday evening. Our temple is a small congregation with several different lay leaders, but one of them (the one who did services yesterday) totally grates on my nerves. He uses his sermons to wave his arms around and YELL AT US about politics and the election. UGH! There are not enough words for how much I hate this. I need to stop going to his services.

Today was the last Shabbat of 5772, and our temple marked the occassion with havdalah and tashlich services at the 9/11 Memorial on the lakefront. (The three little American flags I left on Grandma's birthday were still there.) We had a bigger turn-out and nicer weather than last year, but it was held later in the evening, so seagulls didn't flock out to eat our bread this time. Yeah, a big group of Jews singing Hebrew prayers in public did get some strange stares, but I didn't care. As we were leaving, lights came on in the memorial's reflecting pool. I didn't even know it had lights and said, "Oh, that's pretty," sounding cynical and sarcastic, like I always do. Maggie said at the same time, "Look, Rebecca! That is SO beautiful!" There is something so enthusiastic and innocent about her outlook on life that is almost bittersweet to me.

Tomorrow evening marks the beginning of a new year, 5773, and I'm hoping that with it, I can turn over a new leaf. Lately I've picked up some bad habits and put down some good ones. I need to stop staying up so late, oversleeping in the mornings, and getting to work late. I need to start recycling again. I need to start cleaning my room more. (I was so excited when I first moved into that big bedroom, and now it's just become a place for me to lose things! My chest has been tight tonight, but where's my inhaler? I have no idea!) I haven't been bike-riding nearly as much I used to, and I need to start doing that again. You know how cranky smokers get when they haven't had a cigarette in a long time? That's Rebecca without her bike-riding.

We're having a dessert oneg after Rosh Hashanah services tomorrow evening. Last year, I brought delicious pumpkin bread that Grandma baked and let me take credit for. Everyone loved it and wanted the recipe. I got it from Grandma and gave it out to a few people, but I didn't think to keep one for myself. I took for granted that Grandma would be around to make it for me for years. So this year, I made bacon & eggs instead. I know no one will love them or want the recipe, but I enjoy making them -- and I made way too many! I better give some to "Briana" tomorrow.

And I better go to bed now, because believe me when I say I have a busy day tomorrow. Until then, there's my Tovah (on her bay window, as always) wishing y'all a happy new year!



SHANAH TOVAH, FROM TOVAH!
NINE ... DAYS ... LEFT UNTIL SEASON 10 OF NCIS!
(We're in single digits, y'all!!)
rebecca_in_blue: (happy smile)
The days are getting shorter now, which is the one thing I hate about fall! I'm going to miss riding my bike to and from temple while the sun is still out. My bike-all-you can experiment is still on, although I wasn't as successful with it this week. Rainy weather and earlier evenings put a crunch in my biking time, but I'm still saving a little money on gas, which is necessary in the wake of getting Muse Watson repaired.

The High Holy Days are fast approaching. They kick off this Saturday with Selichot. This year is my first High Holy Days as an official Jew, so I'm kinda nervous about it. This has to be the busiest, most festive time of year for the Jewish people. Within the next few weeks, I'll be making pumpkin bread for the dessert oneg after Rosh Hashanah, reciting the Torah blessing in front of everyone at the Rosh Hashanah second-day service, and making devilled eggs and helping make salad for the break-the-fast meal after Yom Kippur! Plus, my birthday falls smack in the middle of the High Holy Days this year! (At least it doesn't fall on Yom Kippur. This has happened before.)

And as if I'm not busy enough, just for the heck of it, I lost my debit card! What a Sara thing to do. Yesterday I had to scrimp together four bucks in change to put gas in Muse Watson because of it, and this morning I had to bike to the bank and order a new card. I've never managed to lose a debit card before and am so disgusted with myself. Are you serious, Rebecca?

In other Jew news, we had some new faces at Torah study last Saturday, so Rabbi W had us all introduce and say a little about ourselves. As it turned out, everyone there except one person had been raised in a different faith and converted/was in the process of converting to Judaism. The only one of us who'd been raised Jewish was the rabbi! Someone said something like, "I thought I would be the odd man out, because I was raised Catholic, but you're the odd man out, Rabbi, because you were raised Jewish!" Rabbi W cracked up so hard. He has a very welcoming, open-door policy. He's even convinced two women in our congregation who took up practicing Judaism when they married their husbands decades ago and have been living as Jews all this time, to formally convert with a beit din and mikvah.

I've discovered one of my coworkers is also obsessed with NCIS, although not to the same degree that I am. Over the weekend, we drilled each other with questions about the show (he asked super-easy stuff like, "How did Kate die? Where's Ziva from?"). I kicked his butt! He obviously didn't know that Sara likes to turn on USA when they're showing NCIS reruns and say, "Rebecca can name this episode in one freeze-frame!" Well, there are only three subjects that I'll claim to be an expert on: JM Barrie, child actresses, and NCIS.

Which brings us to the most exciting news of all, of course: Season 9 of NCIS premieres ... TOMORROW!

rebecca_in_blue: (dishevelled hair)
[Error: unknown template qotd]Ugh. Seriously, LiveJournal, I'm not sure which frustrates me more: your impossibly user-unfriendly new RTE, or the increasing commercialization of your Writer's Block prompts.

I can't believe I'm back here after I swore not to make another post until LJ got rid of its new RTE and all the drama it's generating. Rebecca has no willpower! But you already knew that, didn't you?

It's still plenty hot here, but since it's no longer quite hot as Hades, I'm doing an experiment to see how long I can go without driving Muse Watson. For four days this week (Monday-Thursday), I didn't touch my car at all and went everywhere by bike. And I actually enjoyed it! Yes, it took a lot longer to reach my destinations, but I felt much healthier and less stressed than when I'm driving. I also arrived for work much earlier than usual, since I always over-estimate how long it'll take me to bike somewhere. And I'm not if it's because of the biking or not, but my fanficiton muses are finally working again! We'll see how long I can keep this up.

At services tonight, out of nowhere, Rabbi W called on me to take the Torah scroll out of the ark for the parsha reading. I actually ignored him the first few times he called my name; I didn't mean to, but I just assumed he meant a different Rebecca, as this Rebecca has no experience in handling Torah scrolls. Then I remembered that I'm the only Rebecca in our congregation right now. I guess it's all part of being a Jew, and I think I did well enough, but boy, was I nervous. The Torah scroll is heavy and cumbersome, especially if you've never held it before. Jacob (Sassy Jewish Grandfather #3) canted the blessing over it before the rabbi read the parsha, and the whole time I was standing there thinking, "If I drop this in front of everyone... oh God, please don't let me drop it..." My arms were very sore by the time we put it back in the ark, but at least I didn't drop it. After services, several people told me I did very well. I probably I looked as nervous as I felt.

On a slightly related note, I'm currently reading This Is Where I Leave You, by Jonathan Tropper, about a very dysfunctional, secular Jewish family who decide to sit shiva and have a traditional Jewish funeral when their patriarch dies. It's hilarious!

FOUR ... DAYS ... LEFT until the Season 9 premiere of NCIS!

rebecca_in_blue: (subtle sigh)

A few photos from our trip to Hodges Gardens yesterday. My mom and I left around ten and biked for what felt like twelve hours!


We started out here, in front of the lake. The gardens were full of people strolling and taking pictures, but once we got into forest, there was no one. Obviously not many people were tough enough to venture that far.


Me before we started biking -- smiling and ready to go! That didn't last long.
 
 
A beautiful grove of pine trees where we stopped for lunch; it made me think of the Six Pine Trees in the Hundred Acre Wood. The trees were so slender, and I loved watching them sway in the wind. Also, PineSol has nothing on the real thing.
 
 
Biking up one of many steep hills. (My mom doesn't like having her picture taken.)

 
Me after we'd been biking for a while. After going up that last hill, I pulled over and collapsed on a bed of pine needles. My mom said, "Rebecca, you're so white!" Yeah, and I stayed that way because I wore lots of sunscreen.


The gardens were beautiful, full of streams, waterfalls, bridges, and flowers. Walking through it made me think of the Torah passage, "G-d was walking about the Garden [of Eden] in the cool of evening" (Genesis 3:08). I'm reading a book right now that discusses biblical passages that anthropomorphize G-d. But I better knuckle down on my studies if I'm going to get converted by fall.

As an aside, Mom had to struggle to get on and off her bike whenever we stopped. I would've felt sorry for her, but it's her own fault because she lets my brother ride her bike but doesn't make him lower the seat. I suspect letting him ride it is also the reason why her bike's framework is coming loose. Frankly, it disgusts me that she doesn't make him buy his own bike, but I can't say I'm surprised, since this brother still lives with Mom but doesn't pay rent and doesn't have his own cell phone or car, even though he's 31 and has a job! Sara and I pay our own rent and bills, she's putting herself through school, and this year alone, we've bought a car and a computer. Did we ask Mom for any help? No! It's called being an adult.

Today, April 10, is the 100th day of the year.

rebecca_in_blue: (subtle sigh)

Today I called the garage in New Orleans where Muse Watson (my car) is being fixed, and they said he would be ready to go by tomorrow! I'm super relieved, because tomorrow is my day off, and thus the only day that I can go to Nola and get him. I'm catching a ride there with my Jewish grandparents.

Spring is here again, and everything in the neighborhood is in bloom: the azaleas, the baby's breath, the pear trees. (The only exception is the crepe myrtles, which don't bloom until summer.) There are also carpets of live oak tree pollen everywhere. While it's all gorgeous to look at from behind a window, and I love the cool weather, it's made my asthma a lot worse. I've been riding my bike to and from work this week since I have no car, and my wheezing is so bad that I've had to start taking Singulair again.


Grandma's house in all its springtime glory. I took this on Easter Sunday last year. Grandma's planning to move in the fall, so this year will likely be the last Easter our family spends there. I still haven't quite accepted it. Sigh...

I had a dream the other night involving Ride a Wild Pony and NCIS. The Ray that Ziva's been seeing was somehow revealed to be Tony's long-lost brother. No, this isn't what I want or suspect to happen. And I can't control what I dream, okay?

rebecca_in_blue: (happy smile)

Friday at work was a No-Good Very Bad Day... but to make up for it, Rebecca had an awesome weekend! After temple services, I finally buckled down and made pecan pie muffins for my Torah study group. I watched X-Men 2 while they were baking, in celebration of the awesome trailer for X-Men: First Class that was just released. My cousin Matthew sent me a link to it on Facebook on Thursday night, and I must have watched it a hundred times since then! I used to love those movies. I saw both X-Men and X2 in theater, and they were probably the first fanfiction I ever read. (But of course the first fanfiction I ever wrote goes to NCIS.) But after the crap that was X3 and Origins: Wolverine, I thought the franchise could never redeem itself. But this new movie might just prove me wrong! The trailer looks so amazing. Cross your fingers that it'll live up.

Link: Trailer for X-Men: First Class.

Saturday got off to a rough start. I woke up very early after a disturbing dream in which me and all my friends from the temple were being rounded up by Nazis. It left me quite shaken, so I went into the living room and watched TV until I dozed off again. Then I got up at nine to head to Torah study. One man there, Si, has a deep gravelly voice like Johnny Cash, and I just love listening to him read. I think if he ever recorded an audiobook of reading the Torah, he could scare straight a lot of people. My muffins were a hit. I think either 1) the batch I made for Thanksgiving 2009 (the ones nobody ate) were just freak duds, 2) everyone except my relatives likes my muffins, or 3) they really do suck, and the folks at temple were just too polite to say anything. Or maybe I'm overthinking these muffins.

Link: Recipe for pecan pie muffins.

After Torah study, I went on a long, glorious bike ride all over the neighborhood. The weather was cool and sunny, the sun was shining, and Rebecca loved every minute of it. (It's hard to believe that there were icicles hanging off my car just two weeks ago!) It was the best sort of bike ride, ambling all over, listening to the same song over and over again -- this time it was "We Belong Together," from Toy Story 3. When I came home, I actually said to Sara, "I feel so fresh and alive!" (Even though I was probably all sweaty and smelly.) She had gotten a gift card to Chili's, so we went there for dinner that night. I usually always get the same dish there, but this time I tried something new, and it wasn't half-bad.

Link: "We Belong Together."

Today we all went over to Grandma's for spaghetti and birthday cake for Aunt Celeste. We stuffed our faces and talked about Stephen King books, and I took a few pictures. I've been fiddling with my camera a lot lately, trying to figure out how to keep the subject focused while blurring the background. I eventually realized that the trick to it is the zoom. It's difficult, because you have to adjust the zoom depending on how far the subject is from your lens, and how far the background is behind the subject. If I ever have kids (a mighty big if, I know), maybe I'll have gotten the hang of it by then. I just hope I'll have moved on from this old camera!


This was the best shot I could get today. Yes, I did edit it on the computer, and the contrast is too severe, but I still like it. Notice how the background behind Eva is slightly less focused than she is? Maybe one day I'll know how to make this happen without having to edit it. I still can't believe she's a teenager now!

After Grandma's, I went swinging in the park with Josh. We talked about NCIS, and he was confused when I told him I let my sister name my car Muse Watson, after the guy who plays Mike Franks.

rebecca_in_blue: (raised eyebrows)

I love these two photos so much. I'm so happy that I was able to get them both, even though I wish they were more uniform. These trees are just a few blocks away, and I ride my bike past them regularly.

It's not easy to find the four seasons here in Louisiana, but you can if you look.


I took this one on a bike ride last March. The trees were in full-bloom (they're Bradford Pear Trees, I think?) and so beautiful that I almost crashed my bike staring at them. Very "White Way of Delight," even if it is a little blurry.


I took this one on Christmas Eve. We never get fall foliage down here, so I was super excited when I saw this (and almost crashed my bike again). There's a little sunflare in this one because it was so bright that day.

rebecca_in_blue: (dropped jaw)

I just got back from riding my bike home from the Shabbat evening service at the temple. (Edit: I actually got back about an hour ago, but just now got on the computer.) I really enjoy going there and find myself looking forward to Fridays. In fact, the weeks are practically flying by now, because I always have two things to look forward to: new NCIS episodes on Tuesday, and temple services on Friday. Doesn't get much better than that.

I'm glad I live close enough to ride my bike to and from there. Lately it's dark by the time the service is over, and today a few people offered to give me a ride home, but I told them not to worry, because I was wearing a white shirt (which greatly increases your visibility and is safest to wear at night) and had a spray-can of mace in my purse (which was true; Ben gave it to me for my birthday, and I always try to carry it when biking at night -- never had to use it, though).

It's a short bike ride, but I almost never go straight home from the temple. Tonight I meandered all over downtown. There's so much to see when you biking at night, things you never notice during the day. There were night construction crews at work inside my bank and a hair salon, hammering boards and laying down paint. There were a few lights still on in the tall buildings downtown, maybe from people working late. There were teenagers coming out of the Catholic cathedral (a youth group meeting, I assume). There were well-dressed couples and the most delicious smells coming out of the corner cafe. There were guys and wafts of alcohol coming out of a bar, its doors open onto the sidewalk, and big front windows where I could see everybody watching sports on the big-screen TV. There was an antique store, empty and closed, but its window lights were still on, shining so brightly on all the glass, gold, and silver trinkets, it was almost hypnotic. There was a group of guys in a cadillac who whistled at me as they drove by. There was a couple taking a ride in a horse-drawn carriage. There was a breeze coming off the lake. And as I got closer to my apartment, there were blocks and blocks of quiet little houses. And there was Rebecca on her blue bike, riding past it all. (Also rode right by [livejournal.com profile] babygoose85's house. The kitchen place next door to you smells so delicious! How do you resist it?)

Refuah shleima, people.

rebecca_in_blue: (excited grin)
I gave Sable a bath today, and needless to say, he was not happy during, but afterwards, he was as energetic as I'd seen him in years. When I took him on a walk, he actually ran a little! Maybe I managed to temporarily wash all the old age off him.

I went for a very long bike ride today, and the weather was so bizarre. The sky was completely overcast (tried to rain, but never really did) and I know this sounds crazy, but it was almost cold out. Cold! After months of it being hot and humid as all get-out! I throw up my hands at this!

Things I saw/found on my bike ride:

  • A black cat asleep in a yard of purple flowers.
  • The words "Expect Blessings" written in chalk on a sidewalk.
  • A huge group of people holding some sort of party/barbeque (probably a birthday party; there were lots of balloons) all over their front porch and yard.
  • And... a dollar bill on the ground! I was so excited, because this is the second time in the past two weeks or so that I've found a dollar on the ground while bike riding. I did the exact same thing today that I did last time, which was bike to the gas station, buy a six-pack of Oreos, bike to Mom's house, and eat them with whole milk and peanut-butter. I can make a meal out of that.
Me and Sara yesterday, in the pouring rain... 
Sara: Why are you wearing your sunglasses when it's obviously not sunny?
Me: Maybe I'm keeping the rain out of my eyes!
rebecca_in_blue: (raised eyebrows)

I stayed out until almost ten tonight, bike riding barefoot around the neighborhood. I can only imagine what the people who saw me thought. But there's something so refreshing about riding a bike at night. I hadn't gone on a bike ride in so long before today. Or written in this journal. Bad, bad Rebecca.

While bike riding, I went by Mom's house and actually walked around in the backyard, which might not sound like a big deal, but it's something I haven't done in years. (Okay, it hasn't been that long. Maybe a year.) But it sure didn't leave me with a taste to do it again any time soon. It boggles my mind to think how much I spent there as a kid.

I had to work all this weekend, and a lot of things went wrong. But at least that made the time go by faster. It's not about to get better, because I have to work again next weekend (we're doing store inventory then, so every single employee will be there) and after that, it'll be about time for Back-to-School. Shoot me now. Wait, don't, I have to stay alive to see Season 8 of NCIS. But I am off tomorrow and Tuesday, and if all goes as planned, I'll be seeing Toy Story 3 tomorrow and going to Texas on Tuesday.

rebecca_in_blue: (worried eyes)
I haven't had a wipe-out on my bike since... well, the last time that comes to mind is when I fell down the stairs with it when I was living in tarpartment. But I sure had one today. My chain popped off at the most inopportune time (while I was standing up on the pedals) and I fell in such a way that my legs hit the bar hard. Fortunately I was just around the corner from Mom's house when it happened, so I limped there, made Adam drive me home, and went back for my bike later, even though I was so mad at it that I was tempted to just leave it on the street. The chain is tangled up good; I'll probably have to bring the whole thing to the shop tomorrow.

Me and my sister, watching Dirty Dancing the other night...
Sara: [about Jerry Orbach] To know him was to love him. And to love him was to make love to him.
Me: So... everyone who knew him, made love to him?
Sara: Oh, everyone who knew him wanted to!
Heh, she'd be good as a late-night talk show host.

P.S. For those of you (if there are any) that don't know, this is Jerry Orbach. This is a neat picture I found on a Google search of his name.
rebecca_in_blue: (dishevelled hair)

Shortly after I got to work this morning, Sara called the store saying that the three outlets in our kitchen had suddenly stopped working. Which meant we had no toaster, microwave, or refrigerator.(They actually went out sometime yesterday, but we didn't notice immediately.) So on my lunch break, I had to haul butt home, parallel park on the street -- because our landlord chose today to repave part of our parking lot, so I couldn't get in the driveway, and I had only parallel-parked once before, and that was years ago! -- wolf down my quarter pounder, then drive back to work with Sara and my bike. I bought an extension cord from the store and she used it to plug the refrigerator into one of our living room outlets until the electrician came out and fixed the outlets in our kitchen. I'm still not totally sure what happened there, because Sara has been asleep since I came home, understandably exhausted from spending all morning on the phone with our landlords and electricity company.

Strangely enough, when I got back to work from lunch, Gina asked me what I'd had, and when I said a quarter pounder from McDonald's, she looked incredulous and asked, "You eat quarter pounders? You seem like more of a ... salad person." So she apparently doesn't know me at all (the word vegetable isn't even in my vocabulary!) whereas Josh knows me too well. When I mentioned how important a chocolate-fix can be, he said, "More important than your NCIS-fix, Rebecca?"

Nothing soothed down all the stress of the day as well as riding my bike home from work. The clocks sprang forward last weekend, so it was still light out and wonderfully cool. I didn't have my earphones, but my iPod speaker was in my purse because I listened to it on my way to work this morning, so I jerry-rigged everything into my bike basket and rode the whole way home with my music blaring. Riding by lots of front-yard barbecues and blooming Bradford Pear trees that smelt divine.

I just moved our truck back to the parking lot from where Sara parked it on the street, and Sable came along for the ride, so we drove around the neighborhood a bit with our windows down and his nose sniffing nonstop. For years we thought Sable was terrified of riding in a car, but it turns out he was just terrified of mom's driving. When I'm taking him somewhere, he practically leaps up into the cab. When I walked him today, he hardly even noticed the crew of guys paving the parking lot; not too long ago he would've been barking for their blood.
 

rebecca_in_blue: (Default)

When I was about 10, this was one of my favorite songs, and I used to hum it to myself whenever I felt stressed or upset about something (even though I didn't really understand what it was about at the time). What I had to be stressed or upset about at that age, I don't remember. But anyway, I loved it. Today, February 20th, would've been my dad's birthday.

It felt like springtime on this February morning
In a courtyard birds were singing your praise
I'm still recalling things you said to make me feel all right
I carry them with me today

It's only recently, by googling the lyrics, that I've been able to understand what she's singing in the second verse.

I wonder why I feel so high
Though I am not above the sorrow
Heavy-hearted till you call my name
And it felt like church bells
Or the whistle of a train on a summer evening
I run to meet you barefoot barely breathing

(I know, the shit we like as kids. My taste in middle school was even worse.)

The weather was so perfect today, cool and sunny, and I had one of the most glorious bike rides ever. I didn't have any specific route in mind, so I just meandered all over my neighborhood and downtown. You know you've hit your stride when you can ride your bike for a solid hour and a half (or maybe two hours, I wasn't keeping track of the time) without stopping, loving every minute of it, listening to the same song over and over on your iPod. I hit the acapella version of "Amazing Grace" a few minutes in, and although I love all the songs on my iPod, none of them sounded very good after that, so I just kept going back to it. I probably listened to it at least twenty times, but I wasn't keeping track of that, either. I didn't want that song, or that bike ride, to end, but when I finally did, I didn't feel tired at all, just energized, rejuvanated, alive.

Sara, yesterday, about me and NCIS: "It's really weird, because she's never been this obsessed with a TV show before."

P.S. My amazing new LJ profile! 

rebecca_in_blue: (excited grin)

Sara and I actually went bike riding together last Thursday. I veered into front of her, she fell off her bike, my chain popped off, and her earphones got tangled up in her spokes and ripped apart, but other than that, we had a really nice time. (I finally used up the film on my disposable camera, which I'd been meaning to do since I took Eva to the water park back in July. Now it'll probably take me another three months to remember to get it developed.) Anyway, it was good that we went bike riding that day, because I think it's rained every day since. Blargh.

It rained on and off all day yesterday, so I stayed inside and organized the hell out of my room. I had started to go crazy because I felt so cramped and had so little room for stuff. Turns out that I just never throw crap away. I cleaned all the crap out from under the bed (which took the entire length of my arm, from each side, and then some) and the bottom drawer of my dresser. I'm using this cigar box I found in the parking lot to store all the little things I keep on top of my dresser. It took me forever to get the smell out of it, but I finally did, and it's quite a nice box. It makes my dresser look so much neater. I compiled a box of stuff to take to Goodwill, but of course with all the rain, our street had turned into a river again, so I wasn't able to go. Maybe this weekend. I found a lot of pens while cleaning, and I want to get us a new pen cup.

I also called the benefits/insurance hotline for my job yesterday, because their open enrollment period is right now. The woman I spoke to was extremely nice and helpful, and if all goes well, I should have coverage starting December 1.

After seeing only two movies all summer (Star Trek and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince), I now want to see three. Where the Wild Things Are looks really cool and kinda weird, and Paranormal Activity looks scary as hell, especially for a big wimp like me. I don't think I want to see it unless I go with Sara, because she's almost never scared of these things. Zombieland seemed very juvenile at first, but everybody says that it's really funny. And of course, it has Abigail Breslin in it, and Little Miss Sunshine handles a firearm, bitches!

rebecca_in_blue: (raised eyebrows)

I actually managed to get Sable a bottle of Royal Coat Express on Friday morning. (There was an article about it in the paper last week -- that's how I heard about it -- and ever since then it's been in crazy-demand.) I've been giving him a teaspoon every morning, and I really think he's scratching less. Grandma said she thought so too, when I took him over to her house.

Man, do I love my bike. Especially now that I've gotten it tricked out with a basket and bell. I went for a long ride
today and realized that there's a real wealth of places I can reach on that bike: mom's house, grandma's house, work, the bank, the post office, the library, the lake, downtown. The only downside is the only fastfood place I can reach on it is Wendy's. But they do serve buffalo chicken there now, so I can't complain. If I should die in a bike accident, I want my epitaph to be, "She died as she had lived -- a cyclist." This is a real epitaph on a real person's grave.


Actually, in seriousness, I'd want my epitaph to be either Elle vole avec son miroir magique or She's flying with her magic mirror. (It's a line from Ponette. Ponette's father tells her that her mother is dead and asks, "Do you know what that means?" Ponette replies, "Yes, she's flying with her magic mirror.") Actually, I'm not sure I want to be buried at all.

Watching The Sound of Music with Sara last night...
Me: They make the landler look easy, but it's actually a very complicated dance.
Sara: It's not that complicated.
Me: Well, you could never do it.
Sara: That's because I always had a shitty partner. Some crazy, sickly, skinny asthmatic girl. I wonder whatever happened to that girl. I think she finally wheezed herself to death one winter.
Me: [laughing hysterically]

rebecca_in_blue: (dozing off)

It doesn't get more ghetto than Rebecca's bike ride to work today. The only thing missing was an asthma attack. And getting hit by a car and killed. But that'll probably happen soon enough.

#1. I had just left when I noticed that something felt funny. I looked down and saw that my back tire was low. But it wasn't so low that I couldn't ride, I just had to pedal harder, so I kept going.

#2. Even though it was sunny when I left, the first song on my iPod ("Something Beautiful") wasn't even over when it started to rain. But it wasn't raining too hard, and there wasn't anything to do about it anyway, so I kept going.

#3. It was still raining when my chain popped off. I cursed and fumed and finally managed to put it back on, then spat on it, so it wouldn't pop off again. (In retrospect, I don't thinking spitting on a bike chain helps it at all. But it didn't pop off again, which is all that matters.) Oh, and while I was putting it back on in the rain, some douchebag sitting on his front porch yelled something at me, like, "You're getting wet!" or something equally stupid and obnoxious.

I went into my sister's store to change into my uniform. Our restrooms are nicer, but I couldn't stand the thought of walking in wet and sweaty, looking like something the cat dragged in. Anyway, by some miracle, I actually got to work on time (barely).

Last night I watched A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. It was very good, better than I had expected, and not as sad as you'd expect from the story.

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March 2013

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