Saturday, August 7, 2010

Saturday, August 7, 2010
Day before dark moon
Neptune Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cooler

The humidity finally broke overnight, and it feels a little better today.

Although yesterday and today are supposed to be the worst astrological days (and we don’t see this configuration again for 500 years or so, hoorah), it felt as though the knots loosened a bit yesterday, so perhaps, in my individual transits, it hit a few days earlier. Let’s hope — I’ll still be cautious.

The “workmen” were more careful, but they’re definitely targeting the apartments of the long-term tenants, to make it as unpleasant as possible. The clouds of brick dust floating around were rather disgusting. I closed the windows early on. But it was still gross in the heat and humidity not to be able to run the air conditioner. There were times when I did anyway, because the dust seemed a better choice — until I started coughing so badly I had to turn it off.

I stayed quiet yesterday, mostly reading. I finished Juliet Blackwell’s A CAST-OFF COVEN, which was tremendous fun, and I’m reading CE Murphy’s WALKING DEAD, which is excellent, too.

I forgot to mention that, on Thursday, I came up with a new herbal mixture for cleaning. Well, I can use the herbs for several things, but I also steeped them in boiling water, cooled the mixture, strained it, and put it in a big jug to use as the rinse after I wash with Murphy’s Oil soap. It’s strong enough to clean, but since I used the herbs steeped rather than oils, it doesn’t strip away finishes. It’s got enough antiseptic herbs, etc., to not only get rid of dirt, but get rid of germs or anything else icky that may tiptoe its way inside. I’m pretty happy with it, but I’ve also been careful to mark the containers as “do not ingest” — it looks a bit like iced tea, but a few of the herbs in there do not agree with the digestive system, let’s just say. I’m going to use some of it on the windows, as well. I’m fortunate, too, in that it smells great, although that wasn’t the most important element. The cleansing was the most important, and the good smell is just an added bonus. I notated as I worked, and copied the recipe in a safe place, so I can make more as necessary. A gallon of the stuff should last about 3 months, even with washing the floors a few times a week.

Elsa has made slow, but steady improvement over the past week. I wrote a polite email to the vet, asking for a refill on the Nalpoxtrene (you would have all been so proud of me), and he responded with 3 refills. I’m going to call the pharmacy today to make sure they’ve sent it out, and we should be in decent shape for the next few months. Elsa is eating mcuh better, and the Reiki helps a lot with the acid reflux, making it possible for her to eat. I’ve stripped away almost all the other medications — I’m alternating the Vitamin B and the olive leaf, and weaning her off the steroid. In about a week and a half, she’ll only be on the Vitaman B/olive leaf cycle, the Nalpoxtrene, and the Reiki. She especially likes the tummy massage in the Reiki, and that seems to help the most. She helped me clean out cabinets the other day and “supervised” the workmen yesterday, sitting in the window, so one can tell she’s feeling better. When she didn’t like what they were doing, she would tap on the window and meow at them, scolding them until they changed their behavior. It was pretty funny to see burly workmen being bossed around by an eight-pound cat.

Hauled stuff to storage. Tried to get a walking cast and the clerk at the local drugstore told me, in a completely condescending tone, that “people get them from their doctors; there’s no need to carry them” — his attitude that, if you don’t have insurance, you don’t deserve one. Bite me.

I’ll head to the family-run private pharmacy across town in the next few days — the place that helped Elsa so much when the vet ignored us. They have all kinds of stuff, and, if it’s not in stock, they’ll get it for me. Since I’ve been staying quiet and resting it, and wrapping it in herb-soaked cloths, it’s dong better.

I’m spending most of the day at a friend’s, working over there, catching up on laundry, etc. I think it’s going to be quiet around here today, so it’s safe to go somewhere else for a few hours.

Tomorrow, I’ll work at home — it should be quiet and reasonably temperate. I want to finish the notes on ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT, make decisions about the excerpts, and notes on the new book. I also want to finish typing/sorting my notes on the lectures for the books, get out a newsletter (finally), and start deconstructing the film. And then we’ll see what next week brings.

Didn’t have a good writing session this morning, but it happens sometimes. Will bring the work with me to my friend’s place and see if I can get more done there.

Have a good weekend.


Friday, November 20, 2009

Violet and Elsa

Friday, November 20, 2009
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Rainy and cool

Woken up by a leaf blower at 5:10 in the morning. Not amused. Will file a complaint with City Hall.

I was a guest about the topic of Finding Time to Write here on Wednesday — check it out and leave a comment!

Yesterday’s trip back was okay. Up early, got some work done in the hotel, back to the great cafe for a huge breakfast — totally in love with their Western omlettes, and the corned beef hash was pretty darned good. Read the paper and got some more work done. I LOVE the print edition of the WASHINGTON POST. Some of the best writing out there. They’re one of the few papers who print multiple facets of a story in an article, rather than only showcasing a single point of view.

Washington, DC style has evolved a lot in the past few years. Everyone looks really GOOD. The women all wear flats, but they’re gorgeous flats. The clothes are simple, chic, tailored for both men and women. They all wear clothes that actually fit, instead of stuffing themselves into sizes that are too small. They don’t carry anywhere near as much as New Yorkers do — Washingtonians maybe have one bag, whereas New Yorkers usually have three. I wonder if it’s because Washingtonians have shorter commutes?

Once I got the Metro sorted, it was pretty good. I finally went to the Metro Center Sales office on Tuesday morning, explained what I needed to do and asked for the best type of ticket. They sold it to me then and there, and I had a ticket that I used the whole trip, as often and at any time I wanted, and I even have some money left on it for the next trip.

The Metro runs well and is comfortable. I still prefer the metros in Prague and Montreal, but this one’s pretty darned good, too.

I sent an email to NY’s MTA while I was in DC, with a return-trip question, and got an email stating it takes 15 days to respond to email. You’ve got to be kidding!

I stopped at a sandwich place on the way to the bus stop to pick up lunch. They were still serving only breakfast at 10 AM and started arguing with me, saying I should order an egg sandwich. I explained that: A) I didn’t WANT an egg sandwich, and B) that’s not something I could have with me for hours on the bus. And they kept arguing. So I walked out. I’m not going to give you money for something I DON’T WANT.

We got to the Megabus station early and managed to get on the 10:30 bus instead of the 11:30.

I finished NEVER AFTER on the bus back, which was lovely and charming, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I highly recommend it.

I also read Juliet Blackwell’s SECONDHAND SPIRITS, which I really loved, too. A paranormal mystery that’s clever and interesting and avoids cliche.

We got into NYC at 3, hopped a cab (cab in the rain, it was definitely my lucky day), and managed to catch the 3:37 out of Grand Central, which meant we were home around 4:30.

The cats were happy to see us (okay, Violet wouldn’t speak to me for hours, but the other two were happy) and everything was fine. Sorted the mail, ate a little supper, unpacked, because there’s almost instant repacking to do.

NONE of the man-with-van places I contacted before I left got back to me, so I guess the furniture swap is not happening next week before Thanksgiving. You’d think, in a recession, these guys would be happy for the work. I’ll have to check Angie’s List — that’s supposed to be a good place to find reliable people.

Three boxes of books arrived while I was gone — an astronomy book from NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC, a box of books about Victorian times from Strand, and a box of assorted cooking, pirate, knitting, photo books, et al from Edward R. Hamilton. My next round of research is set.

Back to the page. I have a lot of writing to do, then some stuff to deal with that came in the mail, and some errands to run — I’ve got to get everything sorted for the trip to Maine next week.

Have a great weekend, everyone!