Thursday, March 25, 2010

Orange Glow

Orange Glow

Just what the title means. Actually I couldnt think of anything else. No, its the nothe product endorsed by the late Billy Mayes. I do miss him though. Had that strange quality about him. Either that or the world was under the command of that black beard. Sort of weird how it was so.... black. Anywho, the orange glow was from the sky tonight.

The weather this past weekend was glorious. But the past couple of days have been miserable, gloomy and cold. Rain was the main forecast. Not something I wanted to deal with after the wonderful weekend. Well I should say mid weekend. Its didnt end so well.

Let me start by explaining the glow. It wasnt from some alien space ship. Although that would have been really cool to see. Its one of the mysteries of living in the city. Seems the city lights cause weird things to happen in the skies. When the sky is cold and cloudy, the city lights reflect. I went out tonight to take the dog out for her final business. Its one of the times that I do enjoy. No matter how hot or cold it is, I just like standing out there in the dark. The city tends to be so quiet at this time of the night. No one is out in the streets.

I explained in the last post about how the light flickers green and then to orange. Its that orange light that reflects in the misty rain. Its kind of cool to just look at. And while Im standing there, I like to listen to the trains in the distance. To the right would be the Amtrak. To the left would be the freight trains. Either way, the sound is soothing. The city sleeps, but the trains dont. I can hear them clacking on the tracks and the whistles blowing. I grew up with them so its comforting to me. Not like when I lived right next to the eastern end of the runway at the airport. That wasnt too comforting at all.

But I needed a few relaxing moments of peace. This weekend was absolutly crazy. I couldnt wait to get out of work on Friday. It was just one of those weeks you wanted to end quickly. Saturday was going to be a big day. I always enjoy a trip to see my relatives. As crazy as they sometimes can be, they are great to be with. SO the morning started off early. Cup of coffee and Im ready to walk out the door. My father was picking me up at about 9am. A little early for me on a Saturday. So that mug was warm and inviting. Now mind you that the mug I have is a two cupper. So I had one in my hands when we left.

By the time we were about half way there, we were at a service station and I was getting another refill. We arrived with a few minutes to spare. Actually 45 of them. So Cami and I went to do a little shopping. We like hitting one of the bargin stores there. Picked up a couple of things there and then went on to the Hallmark store to look for a specific Webkinz. I will explain my addiction to that later.

We didnt find the one I intended but I was able to pick up a retired one. She got a couple of figurines and some stickers. So we made out fairly well. Then it was off to meet the family for lunch. It was pleasant as usual and then a visit from a cousin I havent seen in a while. His daughter and her son came too. It was fun. But soon it was time to leave. We had to hit the Polish market on the way home. And we all know how much I love going there.

After spending some cash at the market and also getting some chocolates, we were off to home. But something happened along the way that I dont think I will forget. I am a huge advocate on mental illness. I cant stand when people abuse those that are "different". Just gets to me. There are some words that I refuse to use. They hurt me and Im sure they hurt those they are meant for. You know what words Im refering to, so I wont mention them.

I also have an interest in the old places that once housed the "insane". Of course we all know that back in the 1800s and early 1900s, people didnt know too much about mental illnesses except that they needed to be locked away and forced to endure cruel treatments. No one knew what a seizure was so they figured that they could lock people up and forget about them. Let the doctors have them. Experiment on them like they were nothing more than a lab rat. We all know differently now.

I have done extensive research on some of these former facilities. But not only was I curious into the history of the diseases and the treatments but also the buildings. The sheer size and designs of these places amaze me. The workmanship that went into building them was also amazing. Some of them are truely works of art. A few stood out. Even a few of the treatments that went on behind the walls interested me. Devices long ago destroyed because of inhuman abuse. One such device was called "the crib". Its sort of like an ancient restraining crate. Of course they are no longer used. Although some patients liked the use of it because it provided a sort of comfort to be contained. They knew they couldnt hurt themselves or anyone else while inside it.

My research to this item was limited and I didnt think much more about it til last weekend. As we left the market, we drove down a street I wasnt really familure with. I saw a really nice looking building. It was of red brick and it caught my eye. It was also old and boarded up. But I was curious and I asked my father what it was. He said it was the old lunitic asylum. That alone perked my interest. But he went by it and nothing more was said. Then about a block down there was this massive structure that blew me away. I asked him what that place was and he told me that was the new lunitic asylum. Of course he went on past that one too. So I didnt get a chance to really look at it or take any pictures.

When we got home, I went straight to my computer and went on the hunt to find out more about it. Not onloy did I find it but also the history of it. What it once looked like and what went on there. I also found out that the device I mentioned earlier was created there and that was the original name. The Utica Crib. You can look it up. There is some information in the following links and some pictures too. Although I couldnt find much for the red building. Im still looking for that one.

Sometimes I often wonder what those places were like. What stories they could tell. I would never go inside one. Not sure what to expect.

Mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of. There are many treatment options out there today. More and more patients live happy normal lives. You wouldnt even know they had an "illness". I work with them every day and I live with them.

More on the weekend in the next post. This one is way too long.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Is It Spring Yet?

This time zone thing is driving me crazy. My computer gets so screwed up with it. I set it and somehow it goes back to what it wants. Im sure Im not the only one this happens to. So the other day I set the time ahead like I was supposed to. I rely on this clock because when Im on line at night, its the only one I see. This is the one that tells me when I have to go to bed.

So anywho, last night I was sitting there chatting with some friends. Someone that would normally come on line at about midnight came on at about 11:15. You would think this would set me off but I didnt really think about it. I just chalked it up that he came on early. That at about 1:30am, another friend said we were all up late and he left to sleep. So to me, that 1:30am thing was time for me to sleep too. So I said goodnight and left. When I got into bed, I looked over at the alarm clock and it said 3:00am!!! I was stunned.

Needless to say that I knew I wasnt getting enough sleep last night. But I had the strangest dream. One more thing, dont eat cheese before bed. I know I say this alot but its true. And of course I eat it. Anyways, this dream was a really good one. I was wearing clothes though.

I was walking through the city in the middle of the night. It was pouring rain. I had on a denim jacket and over that I put a hoodie on inside out. I dont know why I would do that though. But the hood was up and my hair was a wet mess. As I was walking home, a car pulled up. It was towing a boat. My stepdad was driving it and told me to get in the boat. I wouldnt so he got out and threw me up in it. As he was pulling away, I jumped out and ran.

As I was running, some dude started chasing me. So I ran up to a house and told them to call the cops. Apparently he was just trying to help me because I was screaming. But I wasnt hearing that part. As I was yelling at him to get away from me, he was telling me that I was at the house he lived at. So this made me panic more and I started running again.

I reached an alley and I took off my jackets. I put the grey one the right way so it was now black. I tucked the hood inside. Then I put the denim one on over that. I combed my hair back into a ponytail and put some makeup on. I then walked into a minimart to get something to eat and a coffee. As I was leaving, the cops came up to me and asked me if I saw some crazed screaming woman running in the street. I told them no and then moved on. I went on home and thats when I woke up. How weird is that? But all in all, that running made me even more tired. So needless to say, I didnt get any sleep last night.

This morning was strange too. Usually Im arguing with my kid to wake up and get ready for school. This is a constant struggle. So I told her last night that she had to have a good morning if she wants her TV and DS back. THis morning I got up and she was sitting on the couch eating her breakfast. She was dressed and ready to go. I was so shocked that I asked who she was.

After I was all ready to go, I walked past my cabinet and grabbed the deoderant and the body spray. I do this as my last thing in the morning. Maybe I should start it after my shower. Anywho, I ran out of my usual deoderant. I normally use a solid. But I had one I bought a while back to try and didnt like. Its one of those "liquid/solids" sort of gel like thing where you dial up the bottom and a white stuff comes out of the holes in the top.

So in my still unconscious state, I took the top off and proceeded to dial it up. I the put it to my armpit and started to apply. Apparently the part with the little holes came off with the cap and now I have this huge chunk of smeared nasty gel stuff running down my side. Cami started laughing. I wasnt thrilled with this. So she gave me a towel to clean it all up and I had to change my shirt. She then handed me her deoderant to use for the day. So I went to school smelling like powder fresh on one side and Hannah Montana on the other.

The day was a great day. Its been a really warm week. In the high 50sF and low 60sF. Im hoping that Spring has actually arrived. I know I will jinx it and we will get a snow storm soon. But who cares. Im liking this now. This past winter was pretty miserable for alot of people. All the snow is gone in my back yard. Now I cant see the dog when she goes to the back fence to do her duty. But its still nice out even at night.

I like standing outside late at night to look at the few stars the city lights would allow me to see. Its so peaceful and quiet. I can hear the trains in the distance. I can hear the cars on the road. But in the back yard, the spotlight from my porch only goes just so far. After that its dark. I live on a corner as the second house in. I can see down the side street. Down near the end of it is a street light. Every 30 seconds, it comes on flashing that blue/green color. It flashes a few times before it goes to a solid green light. As it brightens, it changes to orange. About 30 seconds later, it turns off and starts the process all over again. That would annoy the hell out of me if I were living in the house where it is. But at a distance, its pretty cool to watch.

I recieved an email last night from the lady that does the new letter for the camp ground. The camp opens in 29 days. Its a good sign for summer to come. I cant wait for the camp to be opened so that I can bring my trunk back down to finish it up. Ive been waiting all winter for this. I opened the email and she takes pictures of everything that goes on down there. The winter pictures are for those that cant get down there to check on their trailers. Its a sort of thing where we can still see whats going on.

For the last few weeks, the snow was really piled up down there so she wasnt able to get into the park. But this weeks photos show something bad. The lake is still frozen. Most of the roads still have about a foot of snow. The ones that are clear are all mud and some are flooded. But there are alot of trailers that have their decks caved in. So Im looking to see if mine is in any of the shots. I dont see it. Im taking that as a good sign. I called my mom and her boyfriend to tell them. They will call the lady up and see about the trailer. So Im waiting for news for that. I wont be in town this weekend to drive all that way to check on it myself. But mom also said that they wont be coming north til the first week of May.

I cant wait that long.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Its In The Air...

Ok Ok... Its been a while since I last updated. Its a habit. Some good things have happened since then and some things are the same ole stuff. We did have a snow day after that storm. In total we ended up with about 15 inches of snow. Not too bad. But it continued to snow off and on for a few days after that. Of course, there was school after that too. You dont think they would allow that one last snow day would you? We need that one for the Friday before Memorial Day weekend.

Today was a brilliant day. The sun was shining and the weather was wonderful. It got to 52F out there. It has been nice for a few days now. I know I will prolly jinx it by saying it. But Im not complaining at all. This is the weather that I like the best. A little cool but bright and sunny. I cant stand the heat.

I do have something a little amusing to tell though. I have this insane addiction to McD's coffee. Im not sure why but I really do like it. Its a new blend that was put out by Newmans Own and Green Mountain. Nice and mellow and not bitter at all. I used to go to DDs but now Ive changed. And change is good. This stuff is cheaper and tastes better.

Every morning I get up a little earlier than usual to get Cami off to school and then I have some time to stop and get my coffee on the way to my school. McDs is right across the street from my school. How convienient huh? So I zip in there, hit the drive thru and order a coffee and go. Usually there are no other cars ahead of me. That works too.

But there are some mornings that are just too crazy and there isnt time to stop to get a coffee so I have to suffer. Its a sad morning. Im not cranky in the morning. I just like the taste of coffee. And I only have two cups. That one large one that I get equals the two cups. But on the mornings I cant get it, I get a Pepsi. Ok ok, I like the caffine too.

But here is the amusing part. One morning I wasnt able to get my coffee. I went in to work without it and people commented that I was empty handed. So my usual statement was that my kid was running slow. Which is the truth. But they noticed that something was different. Am I that predictable? I must be.

So the next morning I made sure to be up and early to go get my coffee. I pulled up to the drive thru. Made my order and went on to the first window. The cashier, polite as always, asked me where I was yesterday. Caught me a little off guard. But I told her that I was running late. Then I drove up to the second window and the same thing. She said she had my coffee waiting for me at 8:05. Strange. This is McDs. They have tons of customers in the mornings. It was a little shocking to say the least. But I got my coffee and on I went to work. Of course my coworkers commented that I had my coffee. Like its a part of my wardrobe or something.

I havent missed a day since. But this morning was a little awkward. I pulled into the lot and there was this huge truck blocking the speaker for the drive thru. Of course I was in a panic on what to do. I didnt have time to go inside to get the coffee. But there was no way for me to pull up to make my order. Talk about disrupting my morning. Geesh. So I thought about it and then went directly to the first window. There was no way I was going to miss out on my coffee and go to school empty handed.

I pulled up to the first window and the cashier there said she already put my order in and said she was sorry for the truck. I handed her the change and then went on to window number two. As I pulled up, the lady there already had my coffee ready and off I went. I sometimes stop and think about what they do when Im on vacation. If one day missed makes them all flustered. What would a whole week do?

So the weather has been pretty nice. The kiddies have been able to get outside and run around to play. Its good for them to get out now. Spring is surely coming. But then again, they always say that March comes in like a lamb but goes out like a lion. Im not looking forward to that part. Im liking it the way it is. Mom called today to say that they wont be home til the first week of May. I dont want to wait that long to get the camp opened up. Scary to mention it but I was dreaming of working on my trunks. Seriously. I want to get that one done and I cant until they come up.

I really should continue my writing about them though. Just to catch everyone up on the latest. There were more posts about them and more trunks to add to the list. Im up to 8 of them now. But there are three in particular that are interesting because of the history behind them. Two were once owned by someone of notable fame. I wont mention who until I do the post. So look forward to that in the future. You will be amused by that too.

Until then, Im off til next time. Toodles.