Sunday, May 30, 2010

A perfect PEI day

Yesterday was perfect in every way. Beautiful weather -- about 70 and cloudless all day. We took our first PEI ride of the season -- about 18 miles (26 kilometers?) on the Confederation Trail. Couldn't have been nicer.

The kids were safely squirreled away: Matt in NJ, Liv in the Hamptons, both in excellent spirits. After our ride we came back, showered and then hung out outside in the glorious weather playing scrabble, waving to neighbors, doing scratch-off cards, reading and having mojitos.

A lovely mid-afternoon rest, then we watched an episode of the Wire (season 2, keeps getting better. Nick installed and set up the DVD player.) Everything slow and langorous and leisurely. We decided to have an early dinner at the Lobster House, since the evening was as beautiful as the day and we could sit outside. But the restaurant was closed. Out of business? Not open yet for the season? No idea. But we went driving into Kensington, music blaring (combo of American Idiot, Fela, Decemberists, Radiohead) and found a charming little inn and restaurant warmly called "Home Place." Very nice place to happen upon. Food was good (salmon for me, tenderloin for Nick) and spent time chatting with the very young waitresses (one too young to even pour the wine.) We talked about PEI, they asked about NY, told us about the history of the inn.) Very fun.

Then to Eleanor's Dairy Bar where Nick had a hot-fudge sundae (best ice cream in Summerside, they say.) Then home, where we read. I'm fighting my way through "The Big Short" -- even the dumbed-down version of the economic crisis with the synthetic CDO's, the credit default swaps and other questionable instruments is a challenge for me to read. Nick's fighting his way through the new book by the author of Life of Pi (Yann?) I'd check but it's upstairs and Nick's still sleeping.

We fell asleep pretty early, tired by the day's excellent adventures.

It's raining now, which makes certain decisions for us. We probably weren't going to ride again, just so we had energy for the rest of our day -- seeing Roy at the Triangle in Charlottetown, maybe lunch with Susie, a concert at the French School tonight with Randy and Allison.

Tomorrow's easy too -- one errand (paying taxes at the bank), getting the house together, repacking (much easier, we didn't bring much and we're leaving here some of what we brought) and then the drive to Moncton. We'll spend the night there so it's not so punishing to make the 6:00 a.m. flight home.

Got airline tickets for us and Mom and Dad for the August trip. Very psyched! We're already planning what we'll do when we're here with them, Laur, Patty and the kids. Much to do: Highland Storm, a ceilidh or two, maybe a concert at the Indian River music festival, a visit to all the Anne of Green Gables sights, Sandspit, more, more, more. Dinner at either Lot 30 or Dalvay for the special occasion night. Otherwise casual.

One last thing: Custom Creations, 233 Water Street, Summerside. Welcome to your addicition, said the artist. That's all I'll say on the topic.

Friday, May 28, 2010

6:30 Friday in PEI

We arrived late Wednesday night in Moncton, NB -- our first time flying there. Easy flight, the one odd thing was the man in front of us at immigration at the airport who was dressed in business casual, explained to the officer that he was here on business and then had to explain why he brought with him a bow and arrow. As we were on line for the car rental I heard him talking to some random people in the airport how he was here to shoot wolves and caribou. Interesting.

We got in late; it was almost 1 a.m. when we reached the house. I slept til 11 (!), Nick til 10, and we started the day doing the shopping to fill the fridge and pantry. We didn't need that much since it's just the two of us, and we'd left a lot of staples here, so it was easy. We love Sobey's! It's part of what Liv refers to as how we "play house" here.

I found a place to get a badly-needed manicure while Nick went to Canadian Tire for a DVD player. In the late afternoon we were visited by our next-door neighbor Donna, who is facing a difficult week: her husband Norm enters a nursing home (Alzheimer's unit) Monday, and she's having a hip replacement Wednesday. We'll be thinking about her all week.

Then Randy and Allison stopped by, both to say hi and to give us our mail and take care of the paperwork and money we owe them for the caretaking. They stayed for a glass of wine and told us about a concert Sunday night that sounds fun -- the four of us will go. That's also the day we'll go to Charlottetown to see Roy play at the Triangle bar, and we'll stay for a couple of hours in the afternoon.

We had dinner at the lobster shack that used to be called Sharkey's but is now under new managment and doesn't even have a sign yet. According to the menus it's now called Frederick's. Good basic food, and since the lobsters came in on 5/1 I had one -- small, sweet and delicious.

And we'll get to see Susie! Just need to figure out where and when. We don't have many plans except a tentative plan to ride Saturday (weather and pain permitting), dinner at Lot 30 and the usual stuff we do at the house.

May look into a couples massage at one of the local places -- tbd.

We may have dinner tonight at the Lobster House right here in Summerside. It's supposed to rain today so our rainy day plans may include staying home and reading, playing games etc., or if the rain's not too heavy we may explore the eastern side of the island.

Spoke briefly to my mom (interrupted by Donna's arrival) and they are planning on coming up in August when my brother and family arrive. That would be perfect, and we've got room for everyone.

Oh it is so so so so good to be here.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

things that seem awkward but turn out not to be

Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, the emo-musical about our 7th President, currently at the Public Theater. Surprisingly good and funny and imaginative. A little long but overall worth seeing.

meeting my ex's new girlfriend, last night over a bottle of win. Surprisingly easy and pleasant, felt more like hanging out with friends than anything else. Really like her, and she seems very good for him

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Olivia's triumph

ok, that's hyperbolic. But she did well with her project at Mount Sinai with the Starlight Foundation. Couple of glitches with props and her rotating cast, but it went well enough that they want sequels and Liv is happy to continue. She was totally charged by the experience, "I'm thinking about music therapy again" and "I LOVE being in front of the camera!" Everybody wins.

Beautiful weekend. We may ride today, but it's also the day when I start the daytime Lyrica, so we'll have to see. Tomorrow we meet with the wedding officiant, and after that Liv, Nick and I will go downtown to see "Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson." Matt can't make it, but he's still buzzing about Fela, which was fela-tastic. Sorry for that clunky coinage.

We leave Wednesday night for PEI -- can't wait. Happy birthday Nikki! Hope you and your friend enjoy "American Idiot" -- tickets on the way.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Nick and Wendy go cycling!

We rode -- first ride of the season. We were both nervous and concerned but it was great. Did the 16 mile starter ride out at the beach. I'm always tentative the first time I ride each season, but Nick's as always incredibly understanding. We kept our speed manageable, never more than about 14 mph. Slow for me but fine for the inaugural ride.

We both felt great after. I can always feel the toxins leave my body as I start to ride, and we couldn't have had a more beautiful day.

Hip part was fine, so I could swing my leg over to get on the bike. Felt it more in my back but I've had a lot of pain the last few days and no discernible change during or after the ride. The sciatica really returned with a vengeance yesterday, with the calf and ankle pain I was having before I started on the new drugs. I missed a dose Friday night because we were out, and since that's the only variable that changed it's to that lost dose that I'm attributing the new old pain. But the cycling certainly didn't make it worse, so I'm happy.

We came back rosy and happy, then hit the showers and hung out with the kids. One Scrabble game (I won, though I got off to a very slow start.) Liv and I chatted about her Hamlet project (I suggested she pretend she's a therapist with Hamlet as a patient and write session notes. She liked it and is working on it now.) Matt kibitzed during the game (he plays Scrabble on his phone and we'll definitely make the next game a three-way.) He's off now to see Yianella, and they'll come back together tomorrow so we'll have a couple of days together.

Sunday morning

It's going to be a beautiful day, and I really want to try and ride. Figure I have pain if I don't ride so I may as well do what I want.

The florist we're using for the ceremony is coming over this morning. We were supposed to bookend the day with wedding activities : florist in the morning and ceremony officiant in the afternoon. But we've had a lot of back and forth with the officiant and are now rescheduled for next weekend. We'll stay in the city that evening to have dinner with Thomas and Sara (currently scheduled for today but trying to move to when we'll be in the city already.)

Overall the wedding planning is very smooth and easy.

Matt's home -- and good, and sweet. We are going to take him and Yianella to see Fela Tuesday evening, which we're very psyched about. Liv demurred; too much work.

We've been reviewing the Peru itinerary. Looks great but I'm asking if we can also find time to see the Amazon basin. Not like we have that many opportunities to see the Amazon so don't want to miss out.

It's been a really nice weekend. Work of course but a manageable amount. Good and mellow, relaxing and fun.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

American Idiot

Brilliant. Fantastic. What a ride. All four of us loved every minute of it. Liv wants to see it at least two more times, and we may see it again too. Best thing we've seen and definitely the best musical since Fela. It reimagines how a musical can work, and everything from the staging (wild) to the musicality (impressive) to the music itself to the performances. Just brilliant. Told Matt (who I finally saw when we get home) that I'll get him tickets to see it this week.

Liv just woke up and she, Nick and I had coffee together and talked about the show. I read the review earlier so was able to confirm that what Jon thought about one of the characters -- who the Times refers to as the "androgynous goth drug pusher" St. Jimmy -- was an actual character and not an apparition as he thought.

Great evening.

Sunday, May 9, 2010


Happy Mother's Day!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

big news week

too many stories to mention and keep track of. But definite highlights include the flash crash, the jobs report, the oil spill and the riggers reports, Times Square, etc. etc. etc.

And how funny was the Daily Show about the ascot?

the closing of Enron

Just a word about that -- very disappointed that it closed. Great review in this week's New Yorker but clearly a day late and a dollar short. Oh well. Next weekend we see "American Idiot" with Liv and Jon and we're very psyched.

So much going on. Wedding plans are coming together. The decoupled nature of our plans (ceremony and party separated by a month) complicates the planning a bit, but it's still pretty straightforward and stress-free. We're passing on certain traditional wedding elements -- the band, the video, the wedding cake, so that helps. Everyone we're working with is incredibly professional and reassuring -- from the people at Ethical Culture (we meet with the officiant next weekend) to the caterer, florist, calligrapher, restaurant. We'll have fun stuff to do in June like shopping for clothes. Honeymoon planning coming together -- nice combination of expertise from the travel agent, Mirwan and our own research.

Open house tomorrow (Judy says she has good luck on Mother's Day) followed by a Mother's Day early dinner. Should be fun.

We were going to ride today but the sky threatens, so we'll pass.

Monday I start PT with a new diagnosis (piriformis syndrome and sciatica) and a new place. The cocktail of drugs is helping. It has calmed the crazy ankle and leg pain. Hip and back pain continue but I'm hopeful that the combo of injections (had the first one, next one this week), the meds and the PT will help.

Matt comes in next week and I'm so psyched to see him. Even Liv was fine with it. She's taking an SAT diagnostic test this morning. Fingers crossed.

It's an intensely busy Spring, with everything going on at home and at work. And I know I'm behind in blogging -- a casualty of the current complexity. But I'll try and keep up.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sunday, sunday!

We lost most of yesterday because Nick spent the day collecting Jamie from her cruise and taking her home, but we picked up where we left off Saturday. Mint juleps and the Derby at Sarah's (thanks, it was fun but too short) then dinner. Friday night we saw a terrific little play down at a tiny theater on Waverly. Called "The Aliens", it's by the woman who wrote "Circle Mirror Transformation" which we saw last year and really enjoyed.

Today people are coming to see the house, and we'll stay local so I can pack for my upcoming trip and reclaim the weekend. We were going to ride but I can't find my cycling stuff (!) so we'll kick it off next weekend. Probably Saturday before the Mother's Day brunch on Sunday.

Wedding plans continue. A few loose ends now that we've decided on a place for the ceremony (NY Society for Ethical Culture.) Need to figure out lunch after (restaurant or catered at the Society?), a photographer, clothes, etc. Nothing hard. We're meeting with the officiant in a couple of weeks to plan the ceremony. So nice to do planning without agony; this is fun and easy and doesn't have a million moving parts.

That's all for now. There's so much going on: the oil spill, the car bomb in Times Square, Arizona's immigration catastrophe, but it's a beautiful spring day that we'll spend with scrabble and mojitos, so I'll put the serious stuff to the side for now.

Happy Sunday.