Saturday, July 29, 2023

Having dinner with VW


Although the above looks nothing like the dinner I had tonight, it tasted as good as this dinner looks.  It's been forever since VW and I have gotten together, and it was nice to see her again after almost a year.

But first...

It's been forever since I've seen VW.  When it appeared that I had double booked dining dates with VW and TCL, I asked TCL to postpone things as it's harder to meet with VW than TCL.  Unfortunately, TCL and I have yet to find a good date where I can finally get together with her (as Mario).  So, I'll likely find a free weekday to meet TCL and have a long postponed "birthday dinner".

Back to VW and dinner...

The other day, I found a long missing dress safely stored inside a chest I plan to give away.  Given how much I love this dress, I was elated when I was able to show this dress to RQS - she thought it looked great on me when I dropped her off at the train station.  And I planned to wear it when I saw VW later on.

VW and I agreed to meet halfway between our two residences.  This meant that we'd meet somewhere in the Brewster vicinity, and I figured that I'd need 45 minutes to get there.  Around 5:30 pm, I put my dress back on, and drove to the restaurant to meet VW.   Just as I got to the restaurant, I got a call from VW - her GPS wasn't working, and needed directions to the restaurant.  Given that she took NY-22 most of the way, I gave her instructions on how to find the restaurant once in Brewster.

Since VW was going to be delayed for a few minutes, I decided to fill up my gas tank and fine tune the directions I gave her.  So, after I returned to the restaurant, I called her and told her how to complete her trip.  Shortly afterward, she arrived and we proceeded to order dinner. Although I won't discuss the topics VW brought up, I talked about RQS and our recent trip to California.  Soon, dinner came and we had a leisurely meal. Unfortunately, the service was even more leisurely to a fault.  It took forever for us to get our bill and to get our change.

Since we were the last people in the restaurant, we knew it was time to go home.  As we left the restaurant, I was reminded of why VW and I never made it as a couple - we both had the wrong baggage for us to be each other's match.  At least, we could be good friends....

Friday, July 28, 2023

RQS's cat stayed alive just long enough to see her one last time.


Cats.  Those who have them love them.  Those that don't often do not understand how these animals attach themselves to us, and how we bond to them.

- - - - - -

RQS 's cat has been ill for a while.  We didn't have a clue about what the problem was, but we knew that it was related to the cat being 18 years old.  Things started out with this cat not being able to control when it had bowel movements. Yet, after a visit to the vet, the cat seemed to be responding to medicine, and was regaining control - or, so we thought.

Recently, RQS had to put one of her cats to sleep.  It was both an emotional and financial decision, as this cat was "only" 13 years old.  When RQS was confronted by the knowledge of the treatments this cat would need, without any assurance that the cat would survive, RQS made the hard decision to put the cat to sleep.  As she said, it was her "husband's cat", a cat that never recovered from the death of RQS's husband. Putting her younger cat to sleep was a very emotional decision for RQS, and she knew that she would soon have to do the same for the older cat - "her cat", as she called it, as it attached itself to her when it was a kitten.  Sadly, today was that day.

This morning, I dropped RQS off at the train station, and she had an uneventful ride home.  Despite a very healthy appetite, the cat had been losing weight for a while.  However, she saw that this cat could not control its bodily functions any longer as she entered her apartment.  The cat was very weak.  So, off to the vet she went, and it was the day she feared.  "Her Cat" had to be put to sleep, and she was crying all the way home.

Chatting afterward, RQS sadly noted - "We won't have any scheduling problems anymore with our cruises."  To me, that's a sad byproduct of a heart wrenching loss....  Both of us would prefer to deal with the problems associated with this very lovable cat....

Thursday, July 27, 2023

UPS fouled up, and now I will soon have 2 Dresses


A couple of days ago, I reported a delivery screw up regarding the above dress.  UPS and Lane Bryant reported this dress as being delivered.  However, it was not in my apartment's entryway, nor was it in front of my door. So I promptly called Lane Bryant to rectify the situation, and they sent me another dress without charge.  Yesterday, I received the above dress, and it looks better on me than it looks like in the picture.

Very early this morning, 1:30 am, as I've started writing this post, I receive a message from Lane Bryant - I will be getting a package delivered later today.  What could this be?  


I checked the timing of all my communications with Lane Bryant, UPS and the Post Office, and I think I know what happened:

  1. Lane Bryant ships the package to me via UPS.
  2. Two days ago, UPS and Lane Bryant say that the package was delivered to my door.
    (Lane Bryant is using UPS's tracking system to be notified of delivery, then sends me a message as well.)
  3. I call Lane Bryant, and they issue a refund for the original shipment.  At this time, I place another order for the same dress at the same price as when I placed my original order.
  4. Yesterday, a dress arrives at my door while I'm cleaning up the apartment.  (Dress #1)
  5. After doing some shopping, I try on the dress and take the above photo.
  6. The clock strikes midnight, and I get up to write my blog entry for the day.
  7. At approximately 1:30, I see a message in my email from Lane Bryant - my package will arrive tomorrow.  (Dress #2)

From what I can tell, UPS decided to use the post office for last mile delivery.  Dress #1 was the dress that was reported as being delivered by both Lane Bryant and by UPS.  UPS reported delivery as complete when it wasn't.  Additionally, UPS reported the dress as having been left in the vestibule of my apartment.  So I had legitimate reason to believe that the package was not delivered to the right location.  The notification I just received probably refers to Dress #2.  This time, UPS does not look like it is involved with the delivery - the post office is handling the dress from first to last mile. 

At least, I can return one of the two dresses....

Wednesday, July 26, 2023

Cleaning up the mess in my apartment - a short post


RQS and I planned to do some cleanup work in my apartment today.  Guess what?  In less than two hours, she pronounced the place almost ready to have the cleaning lady start working in my place again.  The word "Almost" is the key word here.

- - - - - -

As I go into the nooks and crannies of my apartment, I find more things that can either be thrown out or donated to charity.  Today, we filled up another 3-4 bags for charity, as well as more bags of trash to be thrown out.  The dining room table is almost clear, and there are less boxes in back of the love seat in the left of this picture.  I couldn't have gotten this far without RQS's help, and I'll always be grateful for this help.  But I know that payback will come when I have to do the same for her at her apartment.

Once we finished dinner, it was time to go out and do some recreational shopping.  When I do this, it is always for things I could use, and not just for entertainment.  For example, today's shopping bag contained 4 LED light bulbs, Command Strips for damage free mounting pictures on walls, and a mouse pad that I can keep with my Chromebook computer.  On the way home, we stopped at Mickey D's for a treat before returning to my place.

On the whole, we accomplished more in 2 hours than I could get done in a week.  It's nice having someone around to help me be the best I can be.

Tuesday, July 25, 2023

Now to clean up the mess in my apartment


I only wish my dining room table was still this "uncluttered".  Right now, the whole apartment (including the table) is filled with clutter.  But how did it happen? And, how can I eliminate the clutter?

- - - - - -

Before Covid, the clutter in my apartment was being kept to a manageable level.  The bi-weekly (then monthly) visit by my cleaning lady gave me the incentive to keep this place neat enough for her to come in on a regular basis.  However, the pandemic got in the way of everything, and I no longer bothered trying to keep the place "neat".  (With what was going on in my life then, as mentioned in my former blog, I was too depressed to bother keeping the place neat.)  Now that I am feeling much better about life, and have a solid relationship with a new girlfriend, it's still hard to get this place in order.  I no longer have the energy to do much of anything without some assistance.

Over the past year or so, I have been donating bags of clothes I no longer wear to charity.  God knows how many bags I've already donated.  But now, things have slowed down a bit.  Yet, I have much more to get rid of, and RQS will help me prune things some more.  I'm a bit embarrassed to have people come into this place, and I will have to make room for an electrician to work on every outlet.  We have aluminum wiring on our 15a circuits, and they need to make sure that the proper connectors are being used, so that we don't have an electrical fire.  I'm going to be quite busy soon!

With all the effort I'm likely to make, I expect one important thing to come of all of this - a less cluttered apartment.  Let's hope that I can keep it that way.

Monday, July 24, 2023

My dress was not delivered like they said


I have mentioned this dress before.  It's something I plan to wear on Gala night on my upcoming December cruise.  However, it was not delivered as claimed, and I had to make some phone calls regarding the "delivery".

But first...

My alarms were set for 9:00 am, 9:30 am, and 10:00 am, so that I could make it to Arts Westchester by noon for Gallery Sitting. These alarms were needed, as I needed extra incentive to become fully conscious this morning.  Once conscious, I scanned my email, got ready to gallery sit, then drove to White Plains.

I got to White Plains with a minute or two to spare.  But no one was coming down to open the gallery.  So, I waited on the stairs for a few minutes, then went upstairs to find out what was going on.  Arriving on the 3rd floor, I found it virtually empty.  But I found someone who could help me, and the gallery was opened.

Halfway through the afternoon, I took a break for lunch, then returned for the rest of my shift.  And things were very different when I returned - AW's staff was preparing the gallery for a function to be held the next morning.  Just before I finished my shift, I received a message: Game Night was being cancelled, as the hosts' home had no electricity.  So, I figured that I might as well drive home.

Arriving home, I noticed a giant box in the hallway - someone had ordered a large shipment of toilet paper from Amazon.  At the same time, I received a message: UPS claimed that it had delivered my dress.  But the dress was nowhere to be found.  So, I put my dinner to be in the refrigerator and started to make a claim with UPS and to tell Lane Bryant that my dress wasn't delivered.  The long and short of this is that Lane Bryant decided to refund my original purchase, and place a replacement order to get a dress to me by mid next week.  Hopefully, there will be no other complications with this transaction.

Sunday, July 23, 2023

I'm glad I don't work in the city anymore.


Lately, the temperature has broken the 90° mark, and people are sweltering outside. If I had still been commuting to the city, I'd feel as if I needed to take a shower to feel fresh when I got to work.  Even though I went to the City this past Monday, it is not something I'd want to do every day anymore.

There was a time where I would have been glad to put up with the headaches of commuting.  Not anymore.  If I can't get to work with a short drive, I don't want to consider the job.  I no longer need the money, and work is only something to keep myself busy.  Although I will do some volunteer work now and then, I would prefer to get a job that pays me - people care more for a person's work when they have to pay for it.  People don't care much for things that have not been assigned a specific value, and "Free" is something that is rarely valued.

And this leads me to think about the current day....

RQS and I have each been thinking about buying new mattresses.  My mattress has a sagging middle, while RQS's mattress has edges that no longer provide adequate support.  Too bad we couldn't combine our bad mattresses to make one good one.  Due to the weather, we won't be doing any mattress shopping until autumn, as both of us want to look at the Saatva mattress in their NYC showroom.  This will be an excuse for the two of us to take the subway into Manhattan, and explore the city a little bit.

In cooler weather, I'd feel no problem in going to RQS's place.  But when Summer comes, traffic gets fouled up even more the closer I get to RQS's apartment.  It seems that the combination of commuter traffic, stadium traffic, and airport bound traffic brings all the roads I want to use to a stand still when the weather gets warm.  RQS and I have an agreement - she takes the train up to see me during the summer, and I will drive down to her place during the cooler weather.  So far, this has worked out well for us.  It's too bad that we don't live closer to each other.  But this can be changed at some future date.

If I were still working in the city, I'd leave my car in Croton for weekends and stay at RQS's during the week.  Although my commute would likely have taken the same amount of time as taking the train from Croton, I'd have had the benefit of being with RQS all the time.  Since I am no longer working, I have to think about the day that I will no longer be able to drive.  At that time, I want to live in a place where both RQS and I will be able to get around without the need for a car.  If only such places were easy to find....

An early dinner with a friend

  Last night, I mentioned to Pat that I wish I could have been born a cisgender female who looked like this when younger.  If I were younger...