Sunday, the 20th, the day of snow, sleet, and freezing rain turned out lovely for me.
I woke early, at 3.30am, and didn’t fight the wakefulness but rose to breakfast, a much-shortened affair now that I allow myself a meager 8-ounce cup of coffee with which to wash down my half-donut.
I performed all of my morning chores, took an excellent nap, thirty minutes, and rose to good work on the blog.
At 8.30 I was ready to go to the club to lift my weights.
Here’s the deal with the inclement weather.
I could have dealt with it, being dressed for it and happy to get out.
But a twenty-minute exerting walk to get to the club gets me facing the weights a little drained, physically and emotionally.
I like to hit the machines with a good deal of energy and enthusiasm.
I took a taxi.
Had to wait twenty-minutes but I was warm and reading; quite content.
With the limited traffic in the city, the holiday and the bad weather, the taxi zipped through the streets, the fare coming to five dollars, which I paid, with a robust three dollar tip, with Senior taxi coupons Boston provides to its senior residents.
I had a great lift.
When I exited the club, fully set on walking the twenty-minutes to Newbury Street and my café of choice, the freezing rain was on the city making walking treacherous and unpleasant.
I went into the subway just steps away from my fitness club, and, using my Senior MBTA pass, took the train two stops, getting me just two blocks from Nordstrom Rack.
I made a quick stop, planned.
At the Rack I returned a shirt and bought five pairs of designer jeans of various sizes, at 50% off, they say.
I’ll try them on at home.
Which I did, much later, during the marvelous football championship, finding one that worked for me.
I’ll return the rest tomorrow.
I exited the Rack through their Newbury Street doors, directly across from the Thinking Cup where I enjoyed my cortado and worked on the blog.
When I was satisfied with the visit I stepped outside.
Still freezing-raining but at an acceptable level.
Plus, I was heading home, a forty-minute walk from here, so if I got cold and wet I could easily get myself warm and dry.
With my backpack and large Nordstrom bag I headed home.
The walk was lovely. Newbury Street sidewalks were shoveled to the pavement.
The pathways through the Public Garden were plowed to a comfortable degree.
Charles Street to the pavement.
Cambridge Street was more dicey, especially at the many corners each one having pretty deep and large puddles of icy water.
Twenty-minutes later I made a planned stop at Whole Foods to buy a potato, a dozen eggs, and a two-cup container of a pedigree fresh pineapple juice. I stuffed them into the large Nordstrom bag.
Ten minutes later I stopped at the Boston Public Market and bought four raspberry doughnuts. Which I also set into the Nordstrom bag.
Ten minutes later, walking through the Greenway, I arrived home.
Ready to warm up, have a gin and tonic, and picking on the last of the goose carcass.
Needing only a woman with whom to share it.
Oh! What a lucky man he was.
Wednesday, January 23, 2019
My 286th consecutive posting, committed to 5,000.
Time is 12.01am.
On Wednesday, Boston’s temperature will reach a high of 44* with a feels-like temperature of 34*. A 20% chance of an afternoon shower.
Do permit me to repeat that according to the Blog’s Winter Calendar, Jan2 to Feb13, we have only 24 days remaining to our winter.
And further, note that Th-F are dry with temperatures ranging from 38-44, perfectly acceptable winter weather. And note that by Saturday we will have only 19 days left to our winter.
We can get through this short period.
Dinner is White Clam Sauce.
Question of the Day:
What are the Neapolitan Novels?
Love your notes.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
From Howard, on the post that commented on Bob Dylan the singer:
After I sent my note to you a couple of minutes ago, I went and read your blog entry for today’s date.
Very nicely done.
Not sure about the allusion (I mean the use of it, strictly as a rhetorical device) to “I Remember Mama,” but I’ll let it pass with merely pointing out I noticed.
Then there’s Sally’s note about Bob Dylan.
I can remember a lot of people making a to-do about his seeming natural voice when he first appeared out of the midwest on the East Coast. In my experience over what is now 55 years, I’d say the man has many voices, all in his control.
And I do agree with your point. The fact is, it’s not just “North Country Fair” but the whole damn album. And that was back in 1969, when he was barely on the scene for six years.
Also, I don’t know if you know his more recent albums, but it turns out, not surprisingly, he’s a devoté of the Frank Sinatra canon. And Bob has come out with a couple of albums of standards from the so-called great American songbook in the immediately past few years.
If you use Spotify:
He never was, and couldn’t have been, Dean Martin or Perry Como (or whoever you like of that ilk). And he knew it himself.
But you don’t listen to him for crooning or mellifluous tones.
You listen to him for the preternatural skills he has for evincing feeling. You listen to him for the same reason you listen to Tom Waits, that is almost despite what it sounds like. Almost.
There are limits to thinking conventionally.
But we’re all entitled to an opinion of course.
Frank was sounding actually a bit worse than Bob does now singing the same songs, when Frank hit the age Bob is now, and continued singing anyway.
The guy who’s a wonder of the age (in several senses) is Mr. Tony Bennett.
Web Meister Responds: Always appreciating the wealth of knowledge and the flow of your expressions you bring to your writings.
Answer to Question of the Day:
What are the Neapolitan Novels?
Fourth book in the series: The Story of the Lost Child
After several months of strife, Elena finally succeeds in leaving Pietro for good.
However, she learns from Lila that despite promises that he had left his wife, Nino has done no such thing.
Elena decides to accept Nino the way he is and moves with her daughters to Naples so she can be closer to him.
She becomes pregnant with Nino's child at the same time Lila conceives a daughter with Enzo.
They give birth to daughters one month apart.
Lila names her child Tina, the same name as Elena's long-lost doll, while Elena names her daughter after her mother, who dies of cancer shortly after her granddaughter's birth. Overwhelmed with the responsibilities of raising three daughters, Elena finds herself in financial difficulties despite help from Nino and Pietro.
She also discovers Nino having sex with her housekeeper and learns from Lila that he has continued to have multiple affairs with many women, both before and after their time together, even propositioning Lila.
Disgusted with Nino, Elena finally finds the strength to break up with him for good.
In the midst of this turmoil, Elena tries to finish a third book she has been contractually obligated to write, but having no time she simply sends her publisher the book she wrote when she was pregnant with her middle child, a thinly veiled account of her childhood, expecting it to be rejected.
The publisher is instead hugely supportive, considering it a great work.
Encouraged by her publisher, Elena and her children move into an apartment just above her old friend Lila.
She realizes that the neighbourhood has severely changed from when she grew up.
Many people, including Elena's own brothers, are now involved in the selling and using of drugs for the Solaras, while Lila is considered a saviour in the neighbourhood, the only one who can stand up to the Solaras and who employs people in her computer business, helping to take them away from drugs.
The success of Elena's book causes trouble for the Solaras, when a newspaper article reveals it contains fictionalized accounts of their illegal dealings.
The Solaras bring a lawsuit against Elena through Carmen Peluso, her childhood schoolmate, and their stranglehold on the neighborhood seems more vicious than ever.
After Michele hurts Lila, Lila gives all the proof of their illegal dealings to Elena and together they write a piece documenting the crimes of the Solaras.
Elena realizes this will do nothing to stop them, but Lila has it published anyway, only to become bitterly disillusioned when all it does is grant Elena more fame.
Shortly after, Elena asks Nino to reappear and be part of their daughter's life.
During an outing with all the children, Tina mysteriously disappears. Enzo believes that the Solaras kidnapped his daughter, while Lila maintains that their daughter is still alive and might one day be returned to them.
Elena and Lila continue to be increasingly alienated from each other as Lila despairs about her lost daughter.
Before Elena, by then an even more famous writer, moves out of their childhood neighborhood for the last time, Lila becomes obsessed with the history of Naples and the cyclical nature of human life.
Recognizing the seeming insignificance of it all, it somehow makes sense for her that it should be desirable to disappear without a trace, though this will be difficult in the new computer age. Decades pass, though they stay in touch, and Elena finally writes a small novel about their friendship.
Lila shuts Elena out of her life.
Later, catching up to the start of the book, Lila is still yet to be found with no new traces of her. One day Elena receives in the mail the two dolls that they lost when they were children.
The meaning of this is ambiguous.
Good morning on this Wednesday, January 23
We followed the Webmeister as he head-on engaged the stormy Sunday recently past.
We checked out our time and calendar.
We were treated to Howard’s thoughts told in his inimitable style on Bob Dylan the singer.
And we read a summary of the fourth book of the Neapolitan Novel series.
Time to go.
Che vuoi? Le pocketbook?
See you soon.