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Attempt at a Pedestrian Post

I saw a couple of things on my run this morning I wanted to take pictures of.  Since people tend to like my Pedestrian Posts with pictures,  I set out this afternoon with my Tablet.  I wore my crazy old lady hat, which has a wide brim, and my prescription sunglasses.  It was one of those walks where the bright sun made it hard to tell if pictures were any good.  Luckily, I think I have enough for a good post.

I hope you can see the buds.

The first thing I saw was a magnolia tree with buds that looked close to blooming.  I do love a magnolia tree.

The picture doesn’t do them justice.

Next I saw some daffodils.  My own daffodils have yet to make an appearance, but once I got my crocuses, I feel hopeful for everything.

These were right near the daffodils.

I continued down German Street towards Valley Health, where some miniature daffodils had caught my eye.

Aren’t they pretty?

What fascinated me about these blooms was that they were surrounded by dried crap from last fall.  Nobody had bothered to cultivate them, so it seemed, yet they were determined to spread beauty and happiness.  Or do I credit flowers with more thought processes than they actually posses?  I don’t really know about these things.

A longer view.

I tried to get a shot of the tiered beds that held the daffodils, but I don’t know how successful I was.  But you can see all the brown competing with them.

And now a note about writing:  a common piece of advice is do not worry about mood; start writing and the mood will follow.  It is not always true.  As I write this, each word is getting just a little bit harder.  I feel I should not share that, because, well why bother you with my petty problems?  And yet, other writers may find it comforting.

Or not.  In any case, I am over 300 words, and I still have enough pictures for tomorrow’s post.  I’m going to call this a Tired Tuesday post and drive on.



The Run I Deserved?

So I went running with the firm intention of making a Running Commentary post, and here I sit, feeling too tired to type a word!  And, of course, proving myself wrong by typing in words.  Let’s see if I can make the actual post before I have to start cooking dinner.

I seriously thought I would talk myself out of running. After all, I have been doing that successfully all week.  Judge me if you like, but the last exercise I got was a half hour walk on Sunday.  I really, really want to get back to running regularly and for longer periods of time.  Why have I not just gone ahead and done it, you may ask.  I have no answer.  Still, I felt reasonably pleased with myself when I got home, sat down with the laptop, then realized I was only going to check my emails before GOING RUNNING.

I put on sunscreen before my running clothes.  I got a load of laundry ready to throw in the washer.  I read recently that you are not supposed to leave the house or fall asleep when either the washer or drier is running.  However, I read it on the internet, and I do not believe most things I read on the internet. Anyways, I have been putting in a load of laundry and running while it washed for some time now.  If it ever does me dirt, I will write a blog post about it.

Naturally my legs were not pleased with me.  That is what you get, I scolded myself.  Start running every day and you won’t have this problem, will you?  The fact is, it is really hard to keep beginning again.  But what else can I do?  My choices are:  don’t stop running, stop running entirely, or begin again.  Obviously the first choice is the best, but how often do I do the best thing?  I remind myself that there have been many periods in the past twenty years (wow, has it been 20 years since I joined the army? How the time flies!), that I have been running on a regular basis.  I hope I am at the beginning of another one now.

The day was pretty: bright and sunny.  In fact, I prefer a cloudy and cooler day to run, but you can’t always get what you want (as the great philosopher Mick Jagger said).  I enjoyed seeing the green leaves on the trees.  They were large, summer leaves.  The delicate, just opening leaves do not last long.  That was OK by me, because this kind offers more shade.  I enjoyed the shade.

I thunked along, wondering how many calories I was burning.  If I had gone to the YMCA, I told myself, I could have been on a nice, smooth elliptical, which would have told me how many calories I burned.  Could I believe anything that smooth, though?  No matter; I was not at the Y; I was out in the fresh air and sunshine.  This was nice.

As I ran, I did not bother figuring in my head how many weeks till I was at 5K shape, if I increased my time by ten percent each week.  For one reason, my record has been so spotty about running every week, I may have been doomed to disappointment.  I managed to run for 22 minutes, which was how long I ran the last time I ran.  I think (too lazy to find my Running Journal and check).   I enjoyed my cool-down walk, and especially the bottle of ice water I had left on my deck to drink while I walked it.

I see I am over 600 words, and it is later than the time I had aimed to have the chicken in the oven.  Darn!  And I still have to add categories and tags, and think of a headline!  Well, that’s what I get.  I hope to see you all on Lame Post Friday!


It’s Monday Running Commentary!

So I ambitiously went running, thinking I could do a Monday Running Commentary for a change.  Then as I started cooking dinner, I thought maybe a cooking post.  Of course, a part of me always wants a Monstrous Monday, even when it isn’t Monday.  Then again, I have not been running in a while.  I think I’ll comment on it.

I have really fallen off the exercise wagon lately, much to my own detriment.  At my age, I need to stay active or I may stop moving entirely!  I did go for a nice walk on Saturday, so I have not been completely sedentary.  I took comfort in that and made my plans.  It was such  beautiful day, I preferred to do something outside than go to the YMCA.  I told myself, walk or run, but do SOMETHING!

As I got ready to go running, I realized I need to invest in some more sports bras (PLEASE do not tell me TMI!).  My supply is getting kind of old.  I found a couple to wear, though, as well as bicycle shorts, running socks and a loose-fitting t-shirt.  I remembered where my running shoes ended up.  This was going to be great!  I got together a load of laundry to throw in while I ran, just to be extra ambitious, especially for a Monday.

It was with a little frisson of virtue, therefore, that I started out.  Unfortunately, it was not long before my legs said, “Oh, crap.”  This was not going to be fun.  However, as I have often noted, if I have learned one thing, it is how to persevere.  After all, one must get through the crappy runs in order to get to the good ones.  I could at least enjoy the sunshine.

I could not enjoy the sunshine.  But I sternly warned myself against dwelling on my misery and kept going.  Seeing flowers and looking for shade distracted me somewhat. Some people were sitting out enjoying the day.  I even saw a sunbather, stretched out on a lounge chair, face down.  I was reminded of Hercule Poirot’s observation in Evil Under the Sun, about sunbathers looking remarkably alike.  Oh dear, he put it much better than that.   I don’t know where I put my copy of that book, and I really don’t want to take the time to look for it now.  Read the book yourself, if you like murder mysteries.

Anyways, I managed to run for 22 minutes (my favorite number!).  As is often the case, my cool-down walk was my favorite part.  I think my least favorite part is this blog post about it.  I’m sorry, folks, it’s Monday, and I have to finish cooking dinner.  I hope to see you all tomorrow, on Tired Tuesday.


Maybe I Could Just Sit on the Porch

I was going to make this Monday Mental Meanderings post on my front porch.  I poured myself a glass of seltzer and lemon (in a plastic goblet, because, you know, safety first) (and it really was just seltzer; I was not violating open container), I brought out a chair and the little wooden footstool my father made me, got the laptop and sat down.  Ah, spring at last!

But the sun is so bright, I couldn’t see the computer screen, except for a reflection of my face from a very unflattering angle.  I turned the computer this way and that, and soon realized I was giving myself a headache.  I had on my progressive eyeglasses (you know, the bifocals that don’t have a line, but don’t call them no-line bifocals or the eye doctor will yell at you) (seriously, I worked with a doctor that would come screaming out of the exam room if he heard anyone call them bifocals) (but I digress).  One must place one’s screen carefully with this sort of lens.  Also, my shoes were uncomfortable.  Ballet flats are supposed to be the relief after heels (which I did not wear today, but that’s neither here nor there).  This pair pinches mercilessly.  I must give them away.

So here I sit now, in my more reasonably lit living room (for computer purposes, I don’t mean to disparage sunshine), slippers on my feet, reading glasses on my nose.  I am much more comfortable, but I do wish I had written a real blog post earlier.  In my defense, I was writing something else while on break at work.  Sometimes when I write something, I really like it and think, “Hey, I’m a pretty good writer.”  Then I wonder if I am flattering myself.  Then I come home and type in nonsense like this for a blog post and wonder about myself.

However, between nonsense and a blow-by-blow of the last few minutes (ooh, here’s a Freudian slip: I just typed “blog” instead of “blow”), I am over 300 words.  I think that’s is enough of this stuff for one day.  I hope to do better on Tired Tuesday.



Sunshine Sunday

Spring has returned to the Mohawk Valley.  It’s been here already once or twice in 2016.  Then cold weather and snow returned.  Then we had some gloomy, rainy days, which, truth be known, I kind of like.  However, yesterday and today the sun returned in full force, and I am loving it.

Yesterday I enjoyed a walk and some running around (it was Scattered Saturday, you may recall), but Steven was sick with a cold and could not join in my enjoyment.  Today he is feeling a little bit better.  We just took a lovely walk, so in lieu of my usual Wrist to Forehead Sunday or even All Leading Ladies All The Time, I offer a humble Pedestrian Post.

I wore my crazy old lady hat and sunglasses but no jacket.  I found a white cotton long-sleeved shirt to put over my t-shirt, because I didn’t quite want bare arms.  Steven, since he is still convalescent, wore a hooded sweatshirt (our generation does not call them “hoodies.” I’m not even sure if a hoodie is the exact same thing or if there is some extra quality attached). Fashion choices settled, we set out.

We headed towards downtown Herkimer, past my beloved Historic Four Corners.  I pointed to the 1834 Jail and said, “That’s where I got hung.”  That, of course, was a reference to the play Roxy, in which I played the title role.  I’m sure it is one of those parts I will carry around with me forever, and that’s not really a bad thing.

As we walked down Main Street, we were sorry to see all the empty businesses.  I wish the area was more thriving.  At least there are a few bright spots.  Valley Exchange is open Sundays now; that’s always a fun place to look around.  Roma’s Pizza now occupies the space that was formerly Brian’s Roast Beef Deli.  I’m fond of Linda’s Consignment Shop, and The End Zone is a nice place to stop in for a beer unless Pete’s Tavern is more your speed.  Collis TruValue Hardware still seems to be going strong.

Turning down Albany Street, we saw that Crazy Otto’s Empire Diner was, as usual, doing a booming business.  Hummel’s Office Plus had some clearance items out on the sidewalk.  We did not stop into any of these businesses.  In fact, I’m sure I missed mentioning a few.  Sorry.  What do you want from me, I’m an amateur blogger not a downtown-boosting advertising agency.

We continued down Albany Street to Caroline, enjoying the sunshine.  I think sunshine is nature’s cosmetic, because almost any scene looks better in the sun.  As we walked we discussed our plans for the afternoon.   I want to sit out on our deck or front porch, perhaps with a beverage.  Steven wants to study his lines from Leading Ladies (I guess I have to mention the play at least once).

One last sunshine-related note:  I washed our sheets and hung them out on our clothesline.  I am SO looking forward to the sweet smell when I go to bed tonight.  I feel certain it will make Monday a little more pleasant.  Hope to see you then.


Sunday Stroll in the Sun

In lieu of my usual Wrist to Forehead Sunday, I offer a Pedestrian Post with a heartfelt sigh of happiness about the weather.

My husband Steven had today off, so it promised to be a good day from the get-go.  We went out to breakfast at Crazy Otto’s before a quick stop at the grocery store.  It was already warmish when we left the house, but when I stepped out of Crazy Otto’s it was WONDERFUL!  I walked down the sidewalk taking deep breaths of spring air.  This was a good day for a walk.

When we got back from Hannaford, I wrote a few postcards, as I usually do on Saturday but had not gotten to this week.  Then I picked up my script for Leading Ladies.  Many of you will remember that is the play I am directing for Ilion Little Theatre.  Auditions are tomorrow. I wanted to photocopy scenes for them.  Hummel’s Office Plus is a short walk from the post office. They have a photocopier.

I wore my crazy old lady hat and my prescription sunglasses.  I was grateful for both.  How wonderful to walk along in a mere sweatshirt (um, and the rest of my clothes, don’t get any weird ideas about me) with no bitter wind hurting my face.  The sidewalks were mostly bare, and the lawns not too squishy when we had to walk around mud or ice.

After mailing the postcards and making the copies, we walked up Main Street so Steven could purchase cigarettes at Smoker’s Choice.  We observed that Valley Exchange was open but contented ourselves with looking at the window.  That is a fun store.  Linda’s Consignment Shop, across the street, was not open, but I must get down there again soon. Also on the other side of the street we saw people working in The End Zone, a pub and grill to be opening soon.

We walked all the way up to German Street, then past our own street to take an extra turn around our block, because we were so enjoying the weather.  Snow is in the forecast in the upcoming week, but I can’t worry about that today.  I hope you are all having a lovely Sunday as well.


Not Too Nefarious

Steven, Tabby and I took a lovely walk earlier.   Full disclosure:  we walked with a nefarious purpose.  I wanted a glass of wine, so we walked to Ramar’s Liquor Store on Caroline Street in Herkimer, NY.


The sun was bright, and the temperature was warm but not too warm.   I always notice how bright sunshine makes everything look better.  I asked Steven if it had the same effect on me.  Naturally he gave the right answer.


Our schnoodle, Tabby, had different ideas of where we should walk to, but we convinced her to walk our way.  She had her own ideas about how often she should stop and sniff things as well.  We tried to accommodate her while not taking eight years to walk five blocks.


I admired many people’s flowers.  We have to get started on our own yard and deck.  We had both noticed that on Saturday there will be a Plant Sale at Mohawk Antiques Mall to benefit Herkimer County Humane Society.  We intend to go.  I’ll probably write a blog post about it (preview of coming attractions).


I’m afraid my blog has suffered during Finish That Novel May.  Just to update you on that, the body was still in the tarp as of this morning.  It was not in a tent nor yet being a busy body, as two comments suggested yesterday.  I’ll tell you what, it is way easier to start novels than to finish them.   No matter.  I’ve finished this blog post; I will finish my novel.  Hope to see you on Lame Post Friday.


My Face Didn’t Crack

I thought instead of Non-Sequitur Thursday I could do a Pedestrian Post. For one reason, I had not walked my beloved dog Tabby all week because of the frigid temperatures. I know I do a lot of Pedestrian Posts, but I was hoping an update on Herkimer in mid-January would be acceptable.

The weather cooperated. It was warmer and sunny. I find it ironic that I say warmer rather than warm, because it was not warm. It was less cold. So you see, warmer can mean both more warm and less warm. Just a little digression on the vagaries of the English language.

Tabby was very happy to see me when I got home, as usual. I tried not to let her catch me changing my shoes, because she always takes that as a sign that a walk is imminent. Unfortunately, she found me. OK, I wasn’t very well hidden. I wanted to get on with things. I managed to get her into her harness and we set out.

My thermostat in the house said it was 26 degrees outside. That sounded SO much better than teens and single digits. It wasn’t till we had started walking that I remembered that it is still below freezing. No matter. The sun was shining. We could rock this.

Tabby spent the first two blocks or so pulling me along at a rapid pace. I was pleased to see the sidewalk plow had been by. It still leaves some snow on the sidewalk, which is perfectly OK with me. It takes more effort to walk through snow. I can burn more calories. I soon realized why my legs have been feeling quite awful these last couple of days. It is because I need to walk as much as Tabby does. I crunched along as happily as she.

Soon she began stopping to sniff. It takes her longer to sniff in the winter, I think because the snow obstructs her sense of smell. I looked around the neighborhood as she sniffed. It looked a little boring with no Christmas decorations, but the sunshine cheered things up somewhat.

I saw a sign advertising an apartment for rent. $450 a month plus utilities. Only the plus sign was kind of screwy, so I thought at first it said $450 a month divided by utilities. Or perhaps it was a really awkward way of saying you split the utilities. These are the things I think about when I walk.

Despite her early enthusiasm, Tabby only wanted to go for a short walk. That was OK with me. I had neglected to put on a scarf and as I observed earlier, 26 degrees is still below freezing. You know that expression, “If she smiled her face will crack”? I began to feel that way.

Still, I felt elated that we had at last walked. I hope for warmer temperatures soon so that we may take longer excursions. Perhaps if we walk longer, something blogworthy will happen.

I Don’t DARE Back Out Now

Sunday was the last day to register for the DARE 5K and pay $20. After Monday, Aug. 11, the fee goes up to $25. At least, perhaps I could have registered on the 11th for $20, but who likes to take a chance on these things? (Oh, you probably do.)

Of course the best way for me to register is to fill out the form the Herkimer Police Department nicely mailed me, write a check, put Tabby on the leash and walk over to the police station. That way Tabby gets a walk, I get some exercise, I can write a blog post about it, and it is altogether a pleasant experience.

I was afraid it would be a little too sunny and hot for our walk but it wasn’t too bad around 9 o’clock, which is when we went. I wore my crazy old lady hat and prescription sunglasses. I noticed once again how nice everything looks in the sunshine. It’s like nature’s cosmetic. Then again, a lot of houses in Herkimer look nice all on their own. I noted with approval well-kept lawns, flowers still in bloom and nicely decorated porches. I am particularly envious of comfy-lookng porch furniture. I have not done enough porch- and deck-sitting myself this year. I’d better start taking advantage of the opportunities left to me.

We walked down Church Street to our favorite Historic Four Corners. We did not pause to admire the buildings but crossed Main Street and continued down to Green and the municipal building. I told the officer at the window I wanted to register for the DARE 5K, and he called to Steve Elwood, the officer in charge of the event. When Officer Elwood opened the door to talk to me, Tabby started to walk right in. She’s so sociable. He petted Tabby and asked if she was running.

“She doesn’t like to run with me,” I told him. “But after I run I walk around the block for a cool-down, and she joins me on that.”

I also asked him a question pertaining to the police for my novel. He gave me some good information. We chatted a little more about the race, then Tabby and I took our leave. We walked back home a different way, which Tabby seemed to enjoy. We stuck to the shadier side of the street, because it was starting to heat up.

So now I’m registered for the DARE 5K, and it is less than a week away. Will I be able to write a blog post about anything else between now and then? Ah, a little suspense will add interest to my week.

Just Another Pedestrian Post

Saturday Running Commentary does not return this week. However, I took a fairly lengthy stroll with my schnoodle, Tabby, and I will write about that.

Regular readers (Hi, Rachel!) know I have not been feeling well lately. Felt like crap Wednesday. A little better Thursday, so took a walk with Tabby. It’s important to walk your dog. For one thing, they like to go for walks. Felt worse Friday (perhaps you read my blog post about it). Felt a little better today. Took a walk.

I went early, before things had warmed up much. Still, the sun was bright. I hoped for the best. I wore my crazy old lady hat. It has a wide brim for shade. I’ve been wearing this large kind of lined windbreaker with huge pockets lately. I got it for three bucks on the clearance rack at Wal-Mart some years ago. I mention it, because I put my prescription sunglasses in the pocket along with a couple of poop bags and the house keys. I didn’t used to lock the door when we went for a walk, but I feel times have changed.

I wanted my sunglasses right away. Some people just wear the sunglasses for a walk and deal with it when the sun goes behind a cloud. I’m kind of funny about that. I’d rather put up with the inconvenience of carrying around the glasses and changing them. I spent about half a block wondering if this makes me a truly weird person. Then I just enjoyed the walk.

We started down German Street and went for three blocks. Tabby stopped and sniffed at as many of the trees and posts as I would let her. I was indulgent, because, after all, the walk was for her entertainment, too. It was early enough that the side of the street we were on was quite shady. That will be a delightful thing in a few months. This morning it was cold. Too much traffic to cross the street easily, so I put up with it. Tabby didn’t seem to mind.

Eventually we turned down the little path that used to be a hydraulic canal. We love that path. It will be even nicer when the grass is green. As we turned onto a residential street, I noticed some crocuses and other flowers sprouting up in people’s yards. Wonderful sight! I reminded myself to check for my own crocuses when we got home.

Two dogs coming from the opposite direction across the street started barking at Tabby and pulling on their leashes. She was absorbed in sniffing a pole and ignored them. Their person pulled on the leashes and told them to behave. Tabby continued her important sniffing. A small group of people walking down the road seemed to be amused by the contretemps.

It was pleasantly warm in the sun as long as the wind wasn’t blowing. Unfortunately the breeze kept picking up and my ears got a little cold in my hat. Not bad enough for me to pull my hood up and really look like a crazy old lady, though.

When we got home I looked for crocuses. None, front or back! I was sad about that. Every year I think I will put down more bulbs in the fall and every fall I forget till the snow flies. Still, I usually get a few blooms from the original bulbs Steven and I planted our first fall in the house. Perhaps they will yet make an appearance. I’ll keep you posted.