Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Spring Break


Before we get to the important news, the garden, let me give you a quick update on the innkeeping.

Lovely guests, one from Seattle brought me coffee beans and tea, another from Nebraska brought treats for the cats. Gifts for Gus and Lucy.....they were beside themselves with excitement.

A tiny ball and 4 pieces of ribbon/cord/string to chase. Of course all gifts disappeared with minutes of being received, probably to be found, at a later date,by Olga the housekeeper.

Olga calls Gus "Puss in Boots", said with requisite Spanish accent, well she is from Bolivia, and can often be found playing with him when she meant to be dusting.

 Or maybe she's just picking the mulch off of him, which certainly constitutes cleaning.

Because with the sudden outbreak of spring we're all in the garden(s).

One Sunday I had two neighborhood husbands helping rather digging up the mounds of scilla that were threatening to overtake Virginia.

They also removed a ring of sparkle grass that was driving me crazy and replanted several hunks of phlox.

Carlos announced my garden is a community garden. 

I did not demur.

I did agree to take him out for Thai.

We have decided we are like a mob of meerkats, leaving our homes only during the warm weather to socialize with one another and work in our gardens.

We've had our first cookout,first baby shower/rave, first drinks party, first hanging out, moving from house to house following the sun or sheltering from the rain.

We've exchanged plants and recipes, gossip and confidences.

If it feels this good to throw off the winter in Virgina what is it going to feel like in the Northeast?

Nirvana awaits.

xo J










Monday, April 13, 2015

From Where I'm Standing


Clearly being an innkeeper keeps a woman busy.

Laundry, fresh flowers, removing cat hair, attempting to remove cats....duvet cover on, duvet cover off, duvet cover on.

Duvets covers are my Achilles heel,or maybe my rotator cuff?

But you know me, I enjoy the hell out of each guest.

New faces, new stories, different reasons for being here.

An internment at Arlington Cemetery for one, a work conference for another, visiting the museums and an old friend for the first. Todays guest is a t-tiny Ukrainian photographer from Brooklyn here to take pictures of the cherry blossoms.

There's always a reason to come to DC.

And for those of you who worry, I do check peoples reviews from other hosts, make sure Airbnb has all their information verified and usually exchange several emails with them before they darken my doors.

I've had two men but all the rest are woman traveling alone and they want reassurance that my neighborhood is safe and that I am sane.  Well, the hood's safe.

I've had lovely reviews and the cats were finally mentioned in one. To their delight and my amazement they were described as cute and friendly but not intrusive, that's the part that made them smirk and me shake my head in disbelief.

 Okay, not intrusive, but maybe a little stalkerish?

In other news Hilary Clinton is running for president and spring has sprung in the garden.

And who else watched the clip of Martha roasting Justin Beiber? Wowzer!

xo J

PS I just read a comment from Donatello asking me to share my Airbnb info, I mean who doesn't want to meet the kitties....anyway it's www.airbnb.com/c/jwinter55....I see I can give travel credit of 25.00 so if you're coming to town send me your email so I can hook you up.

Sorry Donatello, I just saw your comment.


Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Bone Collector


I don't know whether to start with just shoot me or don't shoot me.

For I fear I may be belaboring a point here.

And what you thought (or hoped) was ancient history is being dug up again.

But GG just left, finally, two years later, taking most of her gear from the attic.

Books still remain, but all the sporting goods are gone, family china, boxes of clothes, rocks, bottles,  feathers and shells..

She's moving to Atlanta to be near her GF.

This has been years in the making.

Probably a much more sensible way to have a relationship. I'm like come on over, oh I like you, stay.

And though we have had many awkward moments together, she's still my first person to call in any medical emergency, when I have an urge to eat Thai and go to Home Depot ( these things may not go together for everyone but they always worked for us) or for a little garden inspiration.

So I will miss her again.Or still.

But she has had a tough time of it in the last two years and I cheer her on for her bravery and persistence, her ability to laugh at herself and make me laugh and her persistent bossiness.

And I wish her much happiness.

In the words of one of my favorite  Irish singers, Lisa Hannigan "Safe Travels Don't Die".


Friday, March 27, 2015

Open House

Okay, now that we've dissected the joy of  sex and aging, on to the next adventure.

As you may have noticed I haven't mentioned a roommate in a while.

The little doctor left in December and since then the right person has not presented themselves.

This is unusual. But I didn't fret. I am a lover of solitude, especially in the dark, cold months.

But I am also a lover of money in my savings account and that is shrinking more rapidly than I would like.

Many of my friends use Airbnb when they travel so last night I decided to give hosting a try.

I set up an account this morning and imagine my surprise when I got my first booking hours later. For tonight. Whaat?

Imagine the guest's surprise when Lucy joins him in bed to sit at the window scoping out the activity on the street.

I did stress must love cats. And I posted a picture with Lucy sitting on the very bed he will be sleeping in. But everyone is not a connoisseur of details.....

Oh dear god, I just got a message from him, he expects to be here in 30 minutes.

Well, the bed is made, the cats are fed and in fine fettle. the house is clean and flowers and plants abound.

Wish me luck. The guests write reviews of their stay.

I hope the moniker "crazy cat lady" remains a hashtag on Instagram and not an internet comment about my house.

But let's face it....does he look like he cares one whit about his reputation?

Didn't think so.

PS. the first guest has arrived. Smart, polite and seems slightly amazed that I have cats!?!

What did I tell you.


Monday, March 23, 2015

Further Thoughts On Using It Or Losing It


Ladies, thank you for your candor, your helpful suggestions, for your willingness to discuss this in a public forum.

I learned, I laughed and I listened.

Kathe, from Annapolis, had an experience that sent me to Physical Therapy today with questions, the first one, could they crank up the music, since there were people on tables to my left and my right, the second was are there people in our area practicing Pelvic Floor PT.  I was rewarded with two big yeses.

She also told me when her class was asked who would be interested in training further in this area, she was the only one who raised her hand.

I said I though this was a field that could use more practitioners.  There are million of baby boomers who are NOT going to go gently into that good night.

I'll get some suggestions from my PT soon but in the meantime I have found a group at Virginia Hospital Center here in Arlington.

I'm gonna check it out. Though I am not having sex now, when and if the occasion rises, I want to be able to engage wholeheartedly, knowing I will be both present and pain free.

Guess this is what we call taking one for the team.

Cause none of us want to have "atrophied vagina" stamped on our permanent record.

Am I right?



xo J

PS. I've noticed how much easier it is to blog when I'm writing from the heart. Thanks for being so receptive.



Friday, March 20, 2015

The Womans Room


Well I guess the price you pay for living social is you have no time for blogging.

But tonight is mine own and here I am, sitting at the computer, hoping I'm not going to write about what is on my mind.

But if I don't I might as well go take a bath.

So, if you're male or under what, 50, 55 years of age, you might as well walk on by.
( I don't know why I put those ages down. I went into menopause at 47) All women, of any age, keep reading.

Let's talk about sex baby.

And the aging process.

Shudder.

I've been a proponent of Prempro for some years now. It helps me sleep, takes away the crazies and the hot flashes.

Last year my gyno suggested I start taking it every other night. Fair enough.

Two weeks ago my doctor suggested every third night. This is when the wacky made a return appearance. Waking up to find I had stripped off my tshirt in the middle of the night.Rushing to the pharmacy to buy acne cream because suddenly my face is breaking out. Piling on sweaters at work because I have chills. Extreme exhaustion forcing me to lay down and try not to nap at odd hours of the day. 6:00PM nap? I don't think so. But I want one.

And sex? Been there, tried that. Ow.Ow. Ow.

Really? Men have Viagra and we have what, HRT, but not forever?

I have checked in with my girlfriends of certain ages, most happily married, happily having affairs, or both and they're like yeah, hurts.  Get a prescription. One that probably your insurance won't cover or not too much of.

And my BFF wants to know why everyone says sex is so much better post menopausal.

So tell me, is there something we're missing?

Or are you thinking, wow, she's lost it now. Better go back to every other night.

I don't know if there is a whole world of blogging where this is discussed. If so, send me over.

If not, why not?


 Anonymity could be your friend here, if you want to be heard but not seen.....just saying.



Sunday, March 8, 2015

Spring Ahead!


Since I've been MIA for so long I thought I'd download pictures from my camera and write about whatever images I had captured.

And, dear God, they're all pictures of our last snow. Like we haven't seen enough of this already.

And though it may look like an April day to our friends in Boston, this is Virginia folks, the south, sub tropical climate.

We were house bound from Wednesday night till Friday at noon when the roads were cleared enough we could fishtail our way to work.It sleeted, it snowed and then, to my surprise, it snowed some more.


Apparently all the cats and I did was wander from window to window desperately seeking spring.

Which to me means flowers and to them means birds, birds, birds!
 
No matter where we looked we were surrounded by snow.
 
Spirits were low.
 

But then came today, Sunday. We may have lost an hour but we gained the  sun, blue skies, birds chirping, snow melting goodness.
 
I got to wear a pair of sneakers, off with the boots for the day. I didn't have to layer, I wore jeans without leggings underneath. One shirt, one sweater, a down vest. No scarf, no hat, no gloves. I felt positively naked.

I think the last time I could walk around the yard was February 8th, the Sunday before Valentines Day.
 
Gus roamed the hood for hours, he came in so muddy and covered with bits of I know not what I rushed to cover up the new slipcovers. But no worry, he raced his filthy, furry body to my bed where he proceeded to clean himself with great deliberation finally sinking into a satisfying sleep.
 
So, the first bed is now mulched for the spring. Too bad I have to sleep in it.

The first stirring of spring is a great thing. 

Maybe I wouldn't appreciate it as much if I didn't have the miserable winter to go through first.

But I'd be willing to give it a shot.....

xo J