Saturday, December 17, 2011

In My Dreams...

One year for Christmas (NOT this one obviously, or even next one as it will be Erica's first time back in the US after a year) I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to have a tropical Christmas. Not a cruise, but a serious beach vacation. Someplace in the Caribbean maybe. A week at an oceanfront resort where somebody will hand me pina colodas as I sit and contemplate Happy Holiday thoughts on the beach. One day my dream will come true. In the meantime, other than NOT being out there basking on a warm sunny beach, things are good here.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Cats hate roofers

The roofers finally arrived today after having us wait since the hurricane back in early September. There are plenty of folks around here STILL waiting, so I guess we are lucky. They are crazy-loud though, and it scares the daylights out of our cats. But Vixen is out and about tonight, and even ate a little bit of dinner. That is a VAST improvement over the last time we had roof work done 2 years ago. She stayed under our bed for about 48 hours AFTER they left. I was scared she was going to starve to death. So....maybe she is becoming a bit more flexible. The cats are also a little upset about Brock, but will eventually adjust. Brock is hanging out in the garage, having to be closed up entirely in there right now because of the roofers, who are going in and out of the back gate, so....we can't just let him have free run of the backyard. I think he was scared of the noise, too. Poor thing, he had a long ride in a carrier, came home to a strange place and immediately has to suffer the roofing hoopla. Hopefully the roof will be done by tomorrow evening and life can get back to normal. We brought him inside for a while this afternoon. He did NOT like the other cats. But he did use the litter box without our coaxing him. So that was good news. Maybe he can be inside more than we originally thought (he has been an outdoor cat for 10 years now). He seems to be happy to have his bed, has been eating like a little piggy, and using the litter box I set up in the I think he has made a good start to get himself situated here. I've learned from experience that cats take a minimum of 2 weeks to get used to a new pet in the family. Vixen took almost 6 months to stop freaking out over Samantha...but with time, it seems to work itself out. It will be fine.

Erica is doing really well in York. She is settled into her new place, has decided that she doesn't mind the small space so much. We have skyped and IM'd enough that I feel a lot less worried, although I DO still miss her. She went out with a group of people from work on Saturday night, so apparently is meeting people and making new friends. She is going to an Indian food curry dinner tomorrow night that the post docs try to do occasionally. And the department Christmas dinner will be on Thursday. And before you know it, she will get to see her friend Tara in Munich for New Years. I think she is making the adjustment really well. And as much as I miss her and hate how far away she is, I am thrilled that she is happy and having a good time. I would be so upset if she were sad and homesick and wondering if the move was all a big mistake. What an adventure!!!

Stephen and Hannia are doing well, too. They are settled into their new place, and have put up the official "Christmas Branch". I hope Hannia will post some pictures soon. I haven't seen it yet, but I will run over for a visit soon. Stephen is enjoying writing for Patexia, an online news site. Go check it out if you have the time. He has gotten great evaluations from his bosses, and having this writing experience is incredibly valuable. He has an interview with a company here in Greenville this week, but I don't know all of the details about that yet. I wish him well. Its been wonderful having both of them back in town again, and I know it might not last forever (if he gets the funding for research he will be off and running for a PhD program...applications have all been sent, so....). But I am not going to worry about that right now. I am just going to relax and enjoy for as long as it lasts. All in all everything is good here. I hope you all have some wonderful things going on wherever you are too!

Monday, December 12, 2011

A River Runs Through It

Erica posted some pictures on Facebook of some fairly substantial flooding along the banks of the Ouse River that runs through York City Centre. I finally had to Google just how to pronounce the river's name. I was thinking it might rhyme with "house", because...well....its the same except for the "H", right? Or maybe, it rhymed with "Aussie", with a long E on the end. What do I know? Apparently, not much because it is actually pronounced "ooze". Not such a pretty name for what looks to be a really pretty river. But I want to be able to say it right when I visit.

A couple of months ago, I was listening to another one of my books on CD. I listen to them while I am in the car ALL the time, and I get them from the library. I don't get my hands on the latest releases that way, not for a long time....but it has also given me a chance to listen to books I might never have actually chosen if I stuck to the current best seller list. I have heard dozens of interesting, compelling stories that way. But I digress....I can't remember the title of this particular book, but I do remember that it was set in New Bern, NC. New Bern is a gorgeous little town, if you ever get the chance to visit. The waterfront area is particularly pretty, with cute little shops and restaurants. But anyway, the narrator of this book (it was a man, I do remember that part) kept pronouncing the Neuse River there in New Bern as "noise" river. Or more of a shorter "s" sound like it would rhyme with "Joyce". It took me a minute to figure out what he was talking about. If you live in this area, you would know it as "Noose" river. Or sort of a "Nyoose", the same n-y sound you might use when saying "New". Newoose, I guess,if that makes any sense at all. LOL. I enjoyed the story, wish I could remember...maybe it was "The Wedding" by Nicholas Sparks. Was that set in New Bern?
I do know that The Wedding was romantic and it made me teary. But I still was annoyed by that mispronunciation...LOL!