coming out of my shell

coming out of my shell

Sunday, February 26, 2023

Visitor #3 of 3

Our second visitor arrived on Monday and left on Thursday.  Friday was our daughter M's 51st birthday dinner, and Saturday night Tom2, our third visitor of the week, arrived.  What a kind and gentle person he is.  

Having all these visitors has been fun in so many ways, and still is.  However, I'm on my last leg.  Today we took Tom2 to the Lake Apopka Wildlife Drive to see alligators, birds, and waterfowl from the convenience of our car window.  It's always a big hit with visitors, and my Tom and I love the drive.  Afterwards we drove into Mt. Dora to go to our favorite Cuban restaurant, The Copocabana, where I had my usual picadillo with a large mojito.  What a beautiful day!

I had to take a nap as soon as I got in the house.  Did I tell you I was exhausted?  

Here are some pictures from the drive.  Never fear, I was using a zoom lens and I was inside the car.   

Alligator Head





A big old gator

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Cooking while rattled

Having visitors has been a bit jarring for me.  The past few years have been spent quietly, with people we know.  People who are predictable, and comforting in their familiarity.  I had forgotten how it feels to be around people who are less predictable.  It takes a lot of emotional and physical energy.  And lots and lots of talking.  I can talk that talk.  I can talk until the cows come home, and enjoy every minute of it.  But at a price.  I was in bed about 9 pm last night.  I may have to take a nap this afternoon.  I almost never nap.  

I tend to get rattled when socially challenged.  I say this as I just realized I accidentally turned off the stove half way in to baking a frittata.  Unbeknownst to me it then sat in a warm oven for 20 minutes.  I turned the oven back on, but I know that is a futile effort.  When our guest wakes up I will try to interest her in peanut butter on toast, or steamed oatmeal with blueberries and walnuts.  

Sheesh.  I was really counting on that frittata to start the day off right. 

Monday, February 20, 2023

Visitors Feb 2023

 The COVID years kept visitors away.  Now they are back.  We will have three separate visitors this week.  

Yesterday (Sunday) we met an old friend of mine for lunch.  She and her boyfriend are staying at a DisneyWorld time share she's had for many years.  I have known her, through thick and thin, since we were both young working women. We were even union activists together in those heady days.  We worked in many of the same departments at the University, although not always at the same time.  We share history and love, although we don't always agree on politics.  Politics were avoided at all costs.

The second visitor arrives today (Monday), and will stay with us through Thursday morning.  She is a friend from my husband's commune days in the late 1960s.  We last saw her in 1975.  She is very free spirited, bolstered by a San Francisco lifestyle.  She is also a vegetarian who avoids dairy.  I am none of those things.  I am looking forward to getting to know her better, and excited to eat more plant based meals while she's here.  I have to remember to give her and Tom some space so they can talk about old times, without me.  There will be plenty of politics, as she is in Florida to attend a New College reunion in Sarasota.  If you have any awareness of Florida politics, you will know that DeSatan DeSantis is trying  to destroy New College because it is extremely progressive.  

Last, on Saturday night another of Tom's friends arrives.  He is also named Tom, so we'll call him Tom2.  Tom2 is a lovely man, a musician.  I imagine he and my Tom will play music and go look for alligators while he's here.  He'll be here for 2 nights, and he eats meat.  I've already made some bread, and a red sauce with Italian sausage for pasta.  Both are in the freezer.  Will there be politics?  I don't know.  

This is going to be fun, but I'm already tired.  

Thursday, February 16, 2023

Spring is coming, maybe it's even here

We rode our bikes to a park on Lake Apopka the other day. It was a beautiful day, sunny, light wind, low humidity and only in the low 70s.  The azaleas have been blooming for a while.  I noticed on our ride that the tabebuia trees are packed with yellow blossoms. Spring has come to central Florida, and I hadn't noticed until today.  What's been wrong with me?  

Our few deciduous trees (we have a sycamore and crape myrtle, but there are others out and about) have not returned to life, but will soon.  Of course the palms trees, live oaks, and scrub pines remain green all year round.  Now when I see pictures from up north with snow cover and the overwhelming starkness of tree branches, I am in awe.  The weather is like that for so long in New York State.  It's little wonder that so many become avid amateur gardeners during their astoundingly short growing season.  I salute them.

Here are some pictures from this month in Central Florida.

A bloom on the white bird of paradise

palm tree with spanish moss, Lake Apopka in background

Red Maple seedlings? 

An alligator

leaves and Spanish moss