Category Archives: Personal

The Gypsy’s Promise

I finished writing a book.

The funny part is, it was never supposed to be completed.

The thing is, I fleshed out a couple of characters who became the basis of my first five chapters. Then the urge to actually complete the book passed and I moved on to writing other things.

But after the fifth chapter was done, the book sorta called me back and then the characters took on lives of their own. Before I realized it, there was a sixth, a seventh and an eighth chapter. I laid the book aside again for a while–months if I remember  correctly. But I kept being lured back to the unfinished manuscript.

Before I knew it, there were over 70,000 words written and I found myself composing an Epilogue.

It probably sounds like the hard work has been done, but actually the hard work has just begun–revisions and more revisions. That’s where the book stands until I deem it worthy to be sent to an agent. If I’m lucky, some day you’ll see The Gypsy’s Promise on a shelf in your favorite bookstore, or on Amazon as an eBook.

Wish me luck.

Beauty Begins With the Hands and Ends With the Feet

Did you know that one of the first age-giveaways is your hands?

We tend to take really good care of our faces, but we neglect our hands. Facial products are big business, as well they should be, because it’s important to put your best face forward. But every bit as important are your hands.

I encourage you to buy hand cream and not the cheapest brand you can find. Invest in a good, creamy product, not a watery lotion that will do nothing except make your hands feel sticky. Rub in some cream every evening. It’s never too late to start making this a nightly habit.

And while you’re at it, be kind to your feet. Every once in a while, slather some of that cream onto your feet. Wear socks to bed that night to insure that the cream doesn’t rub off. Trust me, you will never have hard, rough feet if you treat them to a little loving care. It only takes a minute–if that.

1950’s Candy

Guess what I just did? I bought a whole bunch of candy from the 1950’s. I’m gonna take a break from counting calories and instead I’m gonna enjoy some tastes from the 50’s.

Remember the lollipops that didn’t come with a stick? Instead they had a loop of something or other so you could fit your fingers through it. I got ’em.

How about the coconut watermelon slices? Uh-huh!

Do you remember those wonderful wax bottles? I loved them. But no, I held myself back and didn’t order those.

Here’s what else I got:

Marshmallow Ice Cream Cones, Candy Lipsticks (they tasted sooooo gooood), Chocolate Gold Coins, Anise Bears, Turkish Taffy, Atomic Fire Balls.

I should’ve bought some Candy Buttons. Maybe next time.

Now all I have to do is wait for my package to arrive. You’re jealous, aren’t you?

Elizabeth Taylor – Movie Queen

Okay, now that I come to think about it, I guess I overlooked Elizabeth Taylor as one of my favorite women. I’ll have to extend my list to eleven and include her.  She has been a part of my life–well, all my life. At one time, hands down, she was the most beautiful woman in Hollywood.

Back in the 50’s, the nuns at school spoke about how sinful she was. She had so many marriages and love affairs. She was considered to be quite scandalous. Luckily, I didn’t allow their propaganda to sway me. There was always something about Elizabeth Taylor that was magical.

Thank goodness some of it is captured on film.

10 Women I Like — A Lot

As with my list of men, I won’t be listing any American presidents–oops, we haven’t had any female presidents–no American politicians, or religious leaders. This is a random list, no ranking intended.

  1. Eleanor Roosevelt – Human Rights were her passion. She fought for the youth of America, for the poor, for black Americans and for women at home and abroad. She was a suffragette. (Yeah, Eleanor!) Her accomplishments are too vast to enumerate.
  2. Audrey Hepburn – For me she will always be My Fair Lady, but her glowing achievement was working as UNICEF’s Ambassador. She traveled the world, gave countless interviews and appeared before Congress, working tirelessly to make children’s lives better.
  3. Gloria Steinem – Where would women be today without Gloria and Bella Abzug?
  4. Lena Horne – I think she was probably born 50 years too soon for Hollywood.  But in spite of some really Stormy Weather, she clung to her star status throughout her life. Her sultry voice caressed. Her music should be cherished.
  5. Margaret Thatcher – Britain’s first female Prime Minister. History will decide her successes and failures. All the same, I loved listening to her speak.
  6. Jackie Kennedy – She entered my life as the wife of a president and she enchanted me for the rest of her life.
  7. Ginger Rogers – For the many hours I spent at the movies and in front of the TV watching her dance effortlessly across the screen with Fred Astaire.
  8. Pauly Perrette – Plays Abby on NCIS. This seems like an unlikely choice, but what many don’t know about Pauley is she uses her celebrity to help children, animals and the homeless. She is active in so many foundations, it would make your head spin.
  9. Rosa Parks – Where does this type of courage come from?
  10. Sandra Day O’Conner – First female member of the Supreme Court. She was a ground-breaker from the minute she graduated from law school.

Ain’t women grand?

Animal Lover

For years, I used to carry gardening gloves in the trunk of my car, in case I ever had to rescue an injured animal.

Don’t laugh too hard. I knew a fellow who carried a long, heavy rope in his trunk, in case he ever had to rescue someone from drowning.

See–my gardening gloves don’t seem so strange now, do they?

Anyway, as it happens, I have moved a turtle or two out of the middle of the road to safety wearing those gloves. But this is a story about a bird.

Many years ago, I was driving on a narrow two-lane street when a Mourning Dove swooped down and I hit it with my car. It lie limp in the road. I wasn’t sure if it was dead or not.

With tears pouring down my face, I pulled my gloves out of the trunk and had just slipped them on when a man, driving on the opposite side of the road, stopped his car.

“What’s the matter?” he asked.

“I ran into a bird.”

He laughed hysterically. When he looked at my gloved hands, he sneered, “Are you going to operate?”

Then he drove off.

I couldn’t stop crying. The idea of killing a bird horrified me. I walked over to it. I’m sure it was dead, although people have since informed me that birds go into shock and the dove may have been perfectly okay later. I didn’t believe them then and I don’t believe it now. At any rate, I carried the bird to the side of the road and placed it under a bush.

Over the years, I’ve actually saved a lot of birds who went into shock for one reason or another. They fly through badminton nets and into windows. Birds are simply not always equipped to handle human obstacles.

But no matter how many I’ve rehabilitated, I’ve never been able to forget that poor dove, or that guy’s repulsive, insensitive mocking.

Dieting – I Miss Dessert

What to do? What to do? I miss my sweets.

I thought I’d be well over my need for sweets after trying to watch my diet for a few weeks. But the truth is, even if you stop eating cake and pie and cookies, etc., there’s so much sugar and sucrose and every other kind of sweetener in most of the other foods we eat that it’s impossible to stay away from sugar.

I used to be able to cut out sweets pretty easily. After a week or so, the craving disappears. No more. Sugar has invaded most everything we eat nowadays. This is my new solution.

After I eat dinner, I allow myself to eat a piece of hard candy. Sometimes I sit back and have a coffee flavored one. That’s almost as good as having a cup of coffee and a piece of cake.

Othertimes, I pop in a root beer barrel or some other taste treat I like. So far, it’s working.

An Unforgetable Event–Whale Watching

One of my unforgettable events – a whale watch off the coast of Cape Cod.  When you board a whale watching boat, the crew is quick to tell you that you don’t always get to see a whale. They just do their best to locate one.

Not all that reassuring, so I wasn’t expecting much.

What I got was almost unbelievable–even for the crew!

  1. A rare sighting of two (not one) Right Whales. They were playing together. At the time, there were only an estimated 800 in the wild. They have been hunted almost to extinction.
  2. Picture a school bus pushing itself  up and out of the ocean– front end first. That’s the only way I can describe what it’s like to see a Humpback Whale breach out of the water. The one I was lucky enough to see, stayed by the boat, waved with his fin several times and jumped completely out of the water landing again and again with a huge splash. Glorious! Wonderful!
  3. As if that weren’t enough, on the way back to port, over a hundred Dolphins swam around and under the boat. Did you know dolphins appear to be green when you look down on them from above the water?

I’ve  had a few unforgettable events in my life–mental pictures that I cherish. This is one I recall often. I’ll never forget it.

Do you have any?