December 21st, 2019

Adventure, food, Just things, Music, Outdoors, Scotty Hilander, Travel, Uncategorized


Looking for a gig? The Bitch be hiring!


In celebration of the Winter Solstice I say good riddance to these short hours of daylight. I have been more than ready for not only longer “days”, but also some weather that is better than the lousy weather we have been having. The dog isn’t very happy about the rain keeping him inside either!

I won’t be doing a “year-end update” this year; I have been updating the blog with scattered posts. This year not much is really worth repeating so if you want to know what has been going on the last 11 months feel free to go back and look at my earlier posts.

Needless to say, I am looking forward to a much better year in 2020 and am anxious to get this retirement officially started with some travel. I was hoping to do something around the holidays but I am on standby for jury duty for a bit so I cannot go anywhere. It’s just as well, I guess; it saves me some money by staying home. Weather permitting I hope to get away for at least a weekend sometime very soon.

Monday, however, I was able to get away for a few days in Seattle. A friend was in town and offered to share a room so we could hang out a few days and walk around.

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We went walking out and about Tuesday morning to sightsee, shop and eat. Later on in the day after a break at the hotel my friend wasn’t feeling well so I went back out after dark (which is around 4:20 in the afternoon). We had heard there was a political rally and, since I was in the area and am curious and had never been to a political rally like that I felt like I just HAD to go and experience it so I hopped on the light rail and went to the rally location. I will just stay apolitical and leave further comments on this out of the post. It was an interesting experience however and I would do it again!

After the rally I hopped back on the light rail and went to my old fave on Capitol Hill – Dick’s Drive-in – to snack on a couple of burgers and some of those tasty, delicious fries. There were actually quite a few people out not only around that area but around Seattle in general. Lots of shoppers and tourists. Wednesday was an early rise to get home and get the dog from boarding on time.

I’m still working on the intricacies of the song I started back in July. It is coming along well and clocks in around 4:30. I really wish I could have gotten it done much sooner. I find that it’s best to finish a song soon after it is started in order to keep the original “spirit” of the song but I got rather ambitious with some textural aspects of the song and keep adding layers so that has pushed the completion of it back. So far it is at about 14 individual tracks and I will be adding a few more tracks and expanding some I already have to make the sound very full. It’s getting close to being done but not quite to my satisfaction yet. I have really been trying to wrap it up though!

I continue to go through things around the house and lately I have been making some good progress with organizing and going through even more things to get rid of. I have some extra storage containers that I emptied previously when downsizing so I can start consolidating my things into fewer containers. It also gives me the chance to get the last few things I have in cardboard boxes into some sturdier waterproof containers with handles.

With all of the moving around I have done from 2012 until last year I tended to not acquire much in the way of new possessions. However, being fairly stationary for the last 18 months I have bought a few household items I needed so I should not need to get too much more. Now that I have retired and considering more travel I will not be making many more major purchases for household goods (I pretty much have everything I need anyhoo). There’s not really much room in a 15′ Scotty Hilander and most of my stuff would have to go into storage for any long-term travel if that is what I end up doing.

It’s pretty nice to have most everything that had to be done out of the way. Finally, there are no more surgeries and post-op recovery time or PT this year and it’s looking like I actually have a clear calendar for quite a while other than a couple of surgery follow-ups.

That’s all there is for now.

Europe – Day 3 – January 27th, 2018: Dublin, Ireland

Adventure, food, Just things, Outdoors, pictures, Travel, Uncategorized


I Shoulda Stopped Them and Gave Them My Address!

And it’s back to the motherland for this Irishman!

I woke up at 1:45 this morning. That sucked. Setting an alarm for 3 AM was bad enough but even earlier was worse. We walked to the bus stop after we finally found out which one to use and got to the airport with plenty of spare time. It’s a good thing we had that extra time between trying to find the correct bus stop and wandering through the mind-boggling experience of navigating Schiphol Airport.

We have to go through customs in each place we go, asking about our travels and our plans and getting our passport stamped. I have dealt with crossings in Canada travel before but this has been different. They were much nicer than the local experiences I have had coming back into the U.S. coming into Ireland this morning the guy saw my name and asked why I didn’t have a green passport!

The people in Dublin have been so friendly and helpful and it isn’t probably one of the friendliest places I have ever visited. We try to figure out the public transit and someone will most generally ask if we need help and where we are going then they point us in the right direction. We are good about figuring the routes out but some of the buses and trains are not labeled very well. We have it figured out enough to get us to places we need to go, and a big “thank you” to the nice people of Dublin for helping us out!

We found our hotel but our room wasn’t ready yet so we left our bags at the front desk and got back on the train into downtown so we could look around. It’s not quite as hustle and bustle as Amsterdam but still there were many people out on this Saturday. In contrast, Amsterdam at 4 AM is crazy. People still walking around and riding bikes just like it was the middle of the day.

We got some lunch much at a little place on a canal. It was pretty good and different. We have been averaging about six miles a day walking, and we’re pretty worn out today. We came back to the hotel and decided to finally rest up while we could. We went to the restaurant here in the Sheldon Hotel and I finally got to try something they call “mushy peas”. They were actually very good, and I don’t like peas cooked. I also had fish and chips; it was chips and one piece of fish which was enormous. Well worth the €15.


The Lobby of Our Hotel in Dublin, Ireland

It’s bedtime now and we can get a good eight hours of sleep before we need to catch a train to our next destination. We needed to spend more time here and it’s frustrating that we couldn’t but we needed to rest our bodies tonight. I know I’ll be coming back soon.

Keep checking back!