Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Buongiorna!  It is another gorgeous, crisp morning here on the East Coast.  I am planning on dragging taking Chowdah out for a nice long walk.  He is not a big fan of walks.  Chowdah is a true homebody that chooses to use his youthful exuberance to wreak havoc on the home front.

This is my first installment tediously detailing my summer vacation.  OK, I just heard some low groans and sighs out there.  Who doesn't like to look at someone else's boring vacation photos?

The Mister and I met our #2, who flew in from Virginia, at Logan late Saturday afternoon.  Our flight departed at 7:30PM.  This is a late start for me - I usually have my jammies on by then!  We flew to London and then on to Roma.  Don't I sound worldly calling it Roma?  You should here my authentic Italiano accent!

Sista, along with a wonderful travel agent, planned the trip.  Hats off to them - they did a great job.  Sista, her family, and my 96 year old father, Wild Bill, arrived in Rome a few days earlier.  Sista hired a wonderful driver to pick us up at the airport and drive us around Rome.  His name was Luca and she texted us a warning.  She told the Mister to hold on to me tight.  Luca was searching for a beautiful American woman to make his wife.  I could tell that the Mister was nervous.

  Enter... Luca.  The Mister's Italian competition.  

Sista had rented an apartment in Rome for a few days so my Dad could get acclimated before boarding the ship.  Luca picked us up, gave us a quicko touro, flirted with me constantly, and dropped us off at the apartment which was located in Parioli Mansion.  I walked in and announced to Sista's family that Luca and I were engaged.  The Mister rolled his eyes.

The apartment was large and very clean.

Some interesting Roman decorating touches.  Notice the lava lamp sitting on the speaker. 

Sista putting on her sexy, come hither look for the camera.

The Mister checking his email again.

Sista researching a good restaurant in the area.  Another beautiful touch - that little artifact behind Sista is a light-up electric fountain.  I checked Sista's suitcase before we left to make sure that there were no souvenirs leaving with her. 

Nef #2

Nef #1

We enjoyed some wine and appetizers on the patio and then we went out for - what else? - Pizza!  

Tomorrow we hit the ship.

Arrivederci Roma!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Home Alone

From the moment I touched down at Logan on Friday night, I was looking forward to Monday.  On Monday, I would be home alone.  I fantasized about taking a long walk and shedding those extra LB's that I had worked so hard to gain on the cruise.  I actually looked forward to catching up with the laundry and straightening out the house.  I was anxious to get a few blogs written and having some quality time with Chowdah.

Not me but wish it was.

My #2 flew home with us on Friday evening and left early Sunday morning.  Guess she had enough family time.  If she said it once, she has said it a thousand times how well behaved Chowdah was.  The Mister and I were shocked too.  I thought that maybe 2 weeks at puppy camp wore him out.  The Mister, aka the eternal optimist, thought that our Chowdah had "matured." 

We have a gate up in the kitchen to keep Chowdah confined to the kitchen, pantries and his boudoir, the laundry room.  The reasons for the gate are too numerous to mention.  We have taken up and stored all of our throw rugs because Chowdah adopts them as either his potty or a chew toy.

So on Sunday, the Mister said that we should take down the gate and see how it goes this week.  In our house, this is as big event as the Berlin Wall. 

Monday morning was clear and crisp.  I woke to my favorite coffee brewing.  My jet lag was a distant memory.  I let Chow out and sat at my computer.  About 30 minutes later, I heard the familiar "Chow yelp" and I let him in.  He came right over and gave me a big kiss on the knee.  I went over to the gate and folded it closed.  It was time.   

Chowdah sat there a couple of minutes and meandered down the hallway.  I continued to work on sorting my pics.  After about 10 minutes I walked down the hall to the den.  On my way, the most gawdawful stench invaded my nasal passages.  I walked in to see Chowdah's guilty grin and diarrhea all over my beautiful rug.  What is with this dog?  I think he thinks he's too good to "go" on the wood floor. 

At the risk of losing readers, I decided against pictures.

One of the millions of drawbacks of having an old house is that only about 40 percent of the windows can be opened.  The rest are stuck and have been since Abe was President.  

I immediately jumped into action.  This was not my first rodeo.  I grabbed Chow and put him outside.  I cleaned it all up taking breaks to get my dry heaves under control.  I disposed of the clean-up in the bathroom closest to the crime scene.  I flushed the toilet with vigor and before I knew it, the damn thing was overflowing.

I searched the house for the plunger.  I wished I had a gas mask.  I decided to include one on my Christmas list.  I started heaving again.  I hate to admit it, but I had a brief thought about how many pounds I would lose if I threw up.  I knew it wasn't enough to make up for my caloric sins of the past two weeks.

Chow said that he could use one too.

Finally, I got everything cleaned up.  I couldn't wait to take a shower and went to find Chowdah in the yard.  He was on the porch gnawing at a large box that was set out to be picked up by UPS that afternoon. Before Chow knew it, he was sitting in the laundry room in time-out.


About 20 minutes later, Sista called.

          Sista:  Did you see Facebook this morning?
             Me:  No, I've been a little pressed for time.

          Sista:  (sinister laugh) You're not gonna like it!!

            Me:  Did you put a picture on of me looking fat?


            Me:  NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!

Happy Tuesday!