Moving Things

We’re having new carpet installed this week, so all weekend I prepared by spending my time sorting through the large collection of oddities that take up space atop dressers and cabinets. Things the carpet installers won’t move for me. I also moved a few larger items. Things the carpet installers might not handle gently.

Some items I plan to discard; others will be dusted and returned to their old, or perhaps new locations. I like seeing how old stuff can take on a different look in a new place.

I do fairly well when given a task that’s straightforward. Abandon this. Keep that. Sell this. Toss that. Seldom do I spend much time agonizing over possessions.

But heaven help me if I come across old photographs. I never throw those away. Even if I’m sure I don’t know a single person in the photo I cannot throw it out. And if I make the mistake of opening a photo album, whole hours can go by without my notice.

That might’ve happened a time or two this weekend. Maybe three or four. I can’t recall.

Isn’t this a great photo? I think I know the woman, not sure about the man.

Peace, people.

The Eyes Have It

On Saturday afternoon Studly Doright and I drove out to the Tallahassee RV Park to meet up with my brother and sister-in-law who were spending the night there before moving on with their big adventure.

They’d stopped by on Monday on their way to Fort Myers, Florida, where they’d pick up their new Airstream trailer. After several days of orientation and practice with their new trailer they were ready to hit the road. First, though, they needed to collect a few things they’d left at our house. Rather than have them drive all the way to Doright Manor and back to the RV park, we loaded their stuff into Studly’s pickup and met them at the park.

Their new trailer is beautiful—very posh and spacious. We enjoyed wine and cheese with them and their adorable dog, Gus.

That’s my brother, Kelly, dog, Gus, and me.
Look at Gus’s eyes. I think he’s a bit leery of his Aunt Leslie.

We had a wonderful dinner with Kelly and Susan before bidding them goodbye and safe travels. Kelly says he’ll start a blog about their journey. If he does, I’ll share it with you all. It’s bound to be good.

Peace, people!

The Perfect Country Song

Not too long ago I was visiting via FaceTime with my British friends and advisers, Shirley and Michael. At one point the discussion turned to country music. As a native Texan, albeit one who moved away from the Lone Star State to accompany my husband through many job transfers, I am somewhat knowledgeable about country music.

As a child and teenager I detested the genre. It seemed torture to be made to listen to whiny country western in the car when the Beatles might be playing on another radio station, just a turn of the dial away.

Remember, I’m 63.75 years old, so in my youth we didn’t have a way to listen to anything other than what the person in control of the radio, nearly always a parent or other stodgy adult, deemed suitable. Kids today have no idea how good they’ve got it.

But somehow, those songs and artists stuck with me. Patsy Cline, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, Johnny Cash—all are part of my history, and now their old songs are some of my favorites. My parents would be proud.

Back to my conversation with Michael and Shirley, though. I mentioned to them a country song I thought they, and their son, might get a kick out of—“You Never Even Called Me by My Name,” performed by the great David Allan Coe. Also known as “The Perfect Country Song,” this is a piece that must be listened to in its entirety to get the meaning. I’ll share it here. Enjoy.

David Allan Coe in his younger days. Now he’s 80, and I believe he’s still touring!

Peace, people!

Thursday

Lately my life has been one weird event after another. I hope it’s just the isolation that’s getting to me. I am nearly 64 years old, so a bit of cognitive decline might not be too far-fetched.

This morning the heating and air technician came for the bi-annual checkup of our HVAC equipment at Doright Manor. I set my alarm so I wouldn’t forget, and ended up being up and about a good two hours before he arrived. I used that time wisely.

No, I didn’t. I spent a fair amount of the time playing Words with Friends on my iPhone. But I did think to call my optometrist’s office to enquire about the new eyewear I’d selected and paid for more than a month ago. I looked up the number in my contacts and thought I dialed correctly, but the phone made an odd beeping noise while I waited for someone to pick up. When no one answered I tried a second number.

This time there was an immediate answer, “Hello?”

Obviously not an office number. “Dr. S?” I asked.

“This is she.”

“Did I just call your personal number?”

She laughed. “Yes. First you tried to FaceTime with me. I figured you were having an emergency.”

I apologized profusely, told her I was trying to call the office, that I was fine. We said goodbye and disconnected. All I could think was, my eye doctor rocks. I’d forgotten she’d given me her personal number last year when I began seeing “floaters”. As I was writing this it occurred to me that I never did call her office about my glasses. Sheesh.

Then, at lunch I saw a woman’s naked breasts. I was sitting outside waiting for my to-go order when this buxom woman emerged from the restroom. Her one-piece romper had slipped down below her breasts. With practiced ease she hoisted the romper back into place and went in to order her meal, never missing a beat. I’m telling you, I was impressed.

I’m not sure anything else that happened today is going to top that.

Peace, people.

Shameless

Studly Doright and I, after finally learning how to use Netflix, have gone a little nuts. We’ve watched “Orange is the New Black,” “Schitt’s Creek,” “The Ranch,” and “Grace and Frankie” along with several others. We started “Longmire,” but it didn’t really tickle our respective fancies, so we went looking for something else. That’s how we stumbled onto “Shameless.”

If you’re a parent and wondering if you’re doing an adequate job, watch “Shameless.” I guarantee your faith in your own abilities and common sense will be restored.

The story follows Frank, played by William H. Macy and his many offspring. As a father, Frank really sucks. He’s a grifter and a conman who shirks his responsibilities at every opportunity.

His eldest child, Fiona, runs the household, and that’s no easy task. She’s barely an adult herself and sometimes she isn’t quite up to the task. But she’s resourceful, as are her siblings. They borrow and sometimes steal in order to stay afloat, always one step ahead of the bill collectors.

“Shameless” is great fun. It’s sexy and sweet and often hilarious. And after watching even one episode, you’ll never doubt your parenting skills again. I promise.

Peace, people.

About My Book

You all likely thought you’d heard the last about my completed manuscript. Bwahaha! I couldn’t let you off the hook that easily.

One of my beta readers survived the task of reading, suggesting, and editing. (That Oxford comma drives the lovely Shirley crazy, so I find excuses to use it). She’s given my book a couple of thumbs up, and as one might expect I toasted myself with a glass of wine.

Now, I’m contemplating my next steps as I await another beta reader’s thoughts.

The characters from the novel are still in my head. Sometimes I hear them begging me for another adventure. To that I retort, “You’re not even published yet! Don’t get your knickers in a twist,” or some such phrase.

For now, I’m chilling. Like always.

Peace, people.

Some Days

Today was one of those days. My younger brother and his wife stayed the night with us on their way from Houston. Texas, to Fort Myers, Florida, where they’re going to pick up their brand new Airstream travel trailer.

They had their adorable dog, Gus, with them, so we kept our cat sequestered in the master suite last night. The two were aware of each other, but no one got chased and neither of them puked from nervousness, and we had a great visit with family.

It was a win-win. Still, I didn’t sleep well, and having the cat on my chest all night didn’t help much.

After breakfast at a local cafe our guests headed to Fort Myers and I came back to Doright Manor for a nap. The cat settled in beside me on the sofa in the den, and within minutes I was out like a light for the better part of two hours.

When I awakened it was as if I were in an alternate universe. The sky was dark, and I wondered if I’d slept the day away. I hadn’t. But a storm had blown in while I was napping making early afternoon look like nighttime.

I looked at the calendar on my watch fearing that I’d forgotten an appointment with the insurance adjuster, but realized that wasn’t scheduled until tomorrow. Then I began thinking about the carpet I’d ordered. It was supposed to have arrived on the 19th. Today’s the 23rd. Hmmm.

The carpet company had required a deposit. Had I made one? I couldn’t remember. I knew I’d gone to their office to do so, but couldn’t remember actually making a payment. The checkbook didn’t have an entry either. Had I used a credit card? Suddenly I was certain that the reason my carpet hadn’t yet arrived was that it had never been ordered because I hadn’t paid a deposit.

I called the store, “Hi, this is Leslie Noyes. I think I ordered carpet from you, but I can’t remember actually making a deposit.”

The woman on the other end laughed, sort of, “We can sure check.”

A couple of seconds later she read off my address and said, “Yes, it appears you paid a deposit using your credit card, and we’re just awaiting delivery of your carpet.”

I wasn’t sure whether to be relieved or humiliated or worried for my sanity. I’m going to blame it all on the lack of sleep and the lengthy nap I took this afternoon. I’m going to avoid using sharp objects, though, for the remainder of the day.

Peace, people!

The Case for Immortality

The longest word in the English language that doesn’t include the letter e is floccinaucinihilipilification, a noun meaning “The estimation of something as valueless (encountered mainly as an example of one of the longest words in the English language).”

Still, I might take it upon myself to memorize the pronunciation and spelling of this word and upon my death, have it inscribed on the urn in which my ashes are stored. With my luck, the inscriber would misspell it, and with me gone, there’d be no one to notice.

Peace, people!