Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Little Stressed

Hi Dear Folk,

Have been a little stressed recently in getting together all the pre-op paperwork required for the surgeon. This is my own fault, I had no idea so much was needed not just a formality visit with family doctor. I had to get EKG and blood-work.  The spanner in the works was the EKG which was taken at my family doctor and showed abnormal.  I told the doctor that my EKGs are always abnormal, but she had no record of previous EKGs as are purged after seven years.  She wrote me a referral for a cardiologist.

I went back home and trolled through all my medical records that went back to 2000 and found an old EKG and faxed that to her with a letter.  In fact I later found another EKG, all state abnormal.

That was last Wednesday, miraculously I was able to get an appointment for a cardiologist yesterday, Monday and he took another EKG and said he liked his better, but did not know what was really wrong with the first EKG.  So he cleared me for the operation.  It was all a storm in a teacup, but time is running out, surgery is next Monday.

I know why my family doctor did not want to clear me, the EKG read abnormal and she didn't want to take responsibility to sign off on that so sent me to the cardiologist.  He said OK I'll sign away my children on this.  It's all about legalities and what if something happened and who would that come back on.  Another $40.00 and another EKG and specialist doctor visit to be paid for and I hope the insurance picks all that up.

Now I have to worry about the blood-work getting back in time.  It should that was drawn last Thursday.  I know I will have to double check to make sure, all paperwork gets over in time.

Was able to check with my surgical coordinator and she stated that if blood test do not come through she will call Lab Corp and get them.  Sigh of relief.  Has almost all paperwork back from the insurance company for approval of the operation.  Also I find out that my coordinator goes to a congregation in NJ, all is good.


Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The South Comes A Long Way North

Hi Dear Folk,

I passed this Civil War Memorial Sunday evening on the way back to my digs.  The American Civil War touched every family.  In fact my husband's family who were farming in Northern Vermont lost a relative Brandon, I think I'm right in saying that he died in The Battle of Appomattox.

The Mason Dixon Line which is considered the demarcation between the Northern States and the Souther States is between Pennsylvania and Maryland, so quite far north.  It's not just an arbitrary line on a map, but is a line in so much more, it's deep and it's hard to explain.  I view it as an outsider.

My AirBNB digs, a quarryman's house.  Note the big chunks of stone for the door steps.


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Essex Boat Building Yard and Museum, MA

Hi Dear Folk,

Sunday afternoon I visited the Essex Shipbuilding Museum.  The history of boat building in Essex, almost goes back to the time of the first European settlers.  It's a rich interesting history. They built more two masted fishing schooners than anywhere else in the world and you've probably never heard of it.  This is the history they never teach you in school.

I was fortunate to have an excellent tour guide from a family of fisherman.  He was Sicilian, Jason.  They did not come until the early 1900s which is when his great or maybe great, great grandfather came over to Gloucester, MA.  They too have added to the rich culture of boats and fishing in this area.

The boats are launched when the tide is high, and most times launched sideways.

This is Jason with a small dory which they used to send out from the fishing schooner.  Some local high school students are building this.  It was quite dangerous to be out in the dory as they would be quite a distance from the main fishing boat.  They were quite cheap to build and the fisherman found it cheaper to eventually buy them from Canada, than to make them locally.

Here is the Evelina Goulart one of the seven Essex built schooners to survive.  It is in pretty bad disrepair, but can be used as a model of the workmanship.

This is a little walk from the main museum, housed in the old school house.  These are the original half hull models, to scale, of the boats that were built in the Essex boat yard.  They were originally at the Smithsonian, but since 1976 the bicentennial they are on permanent loan to Essex, where they originated from.

These fisherman have so many stories, Jason befriended an old fisherman who died recently in his nineties.  During WWII he ran the route from North America to Russia, carrying anything the Russians needed for the war effort.  After the war he stayed for an extra two years, courtesy of Stalin, mine sweeping the Baltic Sea.  Well at least he didn't go to a gulag and did come back.  He says he wants to write a book, based on his stories of fishing and more.

Here is some history

Such a great afternoon here.


Sunday, October 22, 2017

Hygge Weekend

Hi Dear Folk,

The weather this weekend has been gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous and I'm so glad for the kids.  I wanted to make it a happy hygge weekend.

We had cause to have a little celebration, as Tierney just got a job in her field, not too far from where she lives on Cape Ann, which is amazing.  But the Internet, social media, APPS and other technology makes it possible to work from places one never could.  It's in her field film.

So to celebrate, a little gift and out to lunch.

We, Rob, Tierney and I went out to an Indian Restaurant which had a high rating and I can say the  food was very good.  We started with an appetizer of Palak Paneer, fresh homemade cottage cheese cubes, cooked with spinach with a mixture of masala.  Tierney had Andra Goat Curry, Rob had Shami Kebab chunks of boneless goat ground to a paste and pan grilled, rather like a meat ball.  I had Mutton Chuka Curry from the Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu, 24 spices ground with garlic, it was delicious.  Naan garlic bread.  We all had Mango Lassi drinks, a kind of mango milkshake, and I had to go Gulab Jamin, which to me tastes like balls of suet pudding in golden syrup.  We had lots of left overs to take home always fun.

In the afternoon I ran around looking for mats for my hall way, they must be washable as it gets so much traffic in and out of the house.  I saw a lovely mat with a fox design on but unfortunately not washable so it was off the table.

And even found a new mat for the back door, three of my favorite birds, the cardinal, robin and eastern bluebird.

We fixed the shower tap problem before Tierney came, by breaking down and calling in a plumber.  Actually he just gave us an estimate to put in new taps, but showed Mr. B. what needed to be done to get the hot shower tap working for now.  Success huge torrents of hot water.

We have an almost one hundred year bathroom, still with original tile work, black and white, which I can live with, original bath, which I like because it is open on two sides, I don't think you can even get them like that anymore, original medicine cabinet and not original taps, but original setup for the taps.  Which is two individual taps, hot and cold for the shower and lower down two individual taps for the bath hot and cold.  To replace these you have to buy two complete sets, just to get the second set of taps.  Rob was having a fit, because hot water was down to a trickle and Tierney was coming this weekend.  Peace was restored.

Mr. B. also worked on putting new locks on both the front and back doors, we were at the point where we could hardly turn the key in the lock.  Another job ticked off.  Also reattached a hook that had come off our old coat rack.  To do this the hole had to be filled with wood cement, sanded, colored, let dry, then put the hook on and screws in.

I very rarely buy the same wine twice, because if I did like it I can never remember the name, so thought if I took photos of what I like it might help to remember.  This was a nice wine.  One does have to wonder how much the California wine industry has been effected by all the fires.

Mr. B. came home with the best ginger beer I have tasted from Aldi's.

Working on my Cape Ann shawlette and finishing off my journal.

Still eking out my flowers, lighting my candles, dreaming of India, crocheting my what I'm calling Cape Ann shawlette, drinking wine and eating delicious left overs.

Happy Hygge Weekend.


Cogswell's Grant, Cape Ann, MA

Hi Dear Folk,

Cogswell's Grant was open on Sunday morning which was great, because not all historical homes are.  Here is a little history.  In 1936 Betram and Nina Fletcher Little bought Cogswell's Grant.

Cogswell’s Grant, established in 1636 and now a historic house museum, became the summer home of collectors Bertram and Nina Fletcher Little in 1937. The eighteenth century farmhouse displays their celebrated collection of American folk art, including portraits, redware pottery, painted furniture, shaker boxes, hooked rugs, weathervanes and decoys. Everything is arranged exactly as the Little family lived with it. The property has been operated as a farm continuously for nearly four centuries and offers beautiful views of the marsh and Essex River. 

This fireplace was opened up, as it had been enclosed over the years.  They had hoped to find a painting on the chimney piece, but did not.  So the Little's collected fireplace paintings from other houses that were being demolished.

A tiny kitchen.

Above is an example of a fireplace painting.

Another example of a fireplace painting.

This corner cabinet is in the downstairs bedroom.  They had quite a lot of trouble getting it through the door, but Nina Fletcher Little insisted.

I was able to sit here and eat my lunch, it was so peaceful with the insects buzzing around.


Wingaersheek Beach, Cape Ann, MA

Hi Dear Folk,

A Sunday morning photo, Wingaersheek Beach, Cape Ann.  By this time I was hobbling around on my swollen ankle.  I found myself a walking stick on the drive up to this beach in the woods.  It had a knot at the top, which formed a handle, just needed to be a tad longer, but still useful.

It certainly was a lovely beach day, but that was not in my plans, although sitting still on a beach might have been a wiser course of action.

Tierney said a right of passage for teenagers who live near to the beach is to get a summer job here selling ice creams, she has done it and many of her friends.

This is the scenery on the winding drive up to the beach.  I fell in love with this area of salt grass marshes.

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