Good Morning

Good morning everyone. How was your weekend. Did you do anything fun?

I didn’t do any of my exercising yesterday until after 10:00pm. I then did this morning’s exercising at a little after 8:00am. I suspect that is going to result in some issues throughout the day today. I also failed to do any weight training over the weekend. Let’s say that today is the day it starts for real.

Jen and I finished Stranger Things last night. The last episode is about 2.5 hours long. For a TV show, that is looooong. We’re up to date now though. Harry still has to run that particular episode marathon, but once that’s done we’ll all be up to date. The show is now clear to start working on season five (I think they’ve already started without my approval).

I have decided that, after season five is over, I want to see a spin off series that is just Nancy and Robin in the X-Files. I think I smell a hit. Steve can show up and be their muscle from time to time, and the rest of the cast can make cameos (except Mike, he’s kind of a douche). Oh! Now that I think of it, Will and Dustin and Lucas can be the guys from The Lone Gunmen! This show is going to rule!

I tried out the new toaster oven/air fryer last night by trying to air fry some potatoes. The results were less than stellar, but I don’t know if it was my fault or the oven’s fault. I think it was a combination of the two. The potatoes were one part bland (my fault) and one part… squishy? I guess? That’s probably the oven’s fault. I want another crack at it tonight (with maybe some broccoli too?) but we ran out of olive oil so we need to hit the store for a resupply. Challenge accepted.

I brought up the idea of maybe Jen and me taking a day off on a day when Harry doesn’t have to work so that we can all have an extra shot at doing something fun together before he goes back to school. There isn’t a whole lot of time left with him this summer and I feel like we need to do something to take advantage of what time we have. We also need to get up to Vermont to visit Bellana and steal some additional time with her as well.

Okay, Robert. Back to work with you.


It’s 93 degrees out. My city has declared a heat advisory and setup cooling off stations all around town.

My office is in the cellar. Every time the air conditioner (central air) kicks in the temperature in here plummets. I have a jacket in here with me for when I can’t take it anymore.

It’s roasting hot outside, it’s freezing at my desk. It’s getting uncomfortably hot upstairs where Jen and Harry are because I keep fudging with the thermostat to keep it from getting too cold down here. I can’t do that anymore. I just lowered the temp so that the central air will kick on…

…and I turned on the space heater next to my desk. Yeah. Heatwave, babie.

Here’s a double exposure I took at lunchtime for no reason at all.


The temperature outside is about to drop, I think, because there is a very noisy, very active thunderstorm rolling in. Also, Harry is no longer at risk of heat-discomfort upstairs because he just left for work.

Transparency, thou art my middle name, babie.

It’s Friday

This has felt like a long week, and today is going to feel like a long day.

I want to do something this weekend. Something that involves going somewhere without spending money on anything other than gas and travel snacks. You know what I mean?

Let’s go back to Boston again. Let’s go on a road trip looking for New Englandy things like light houses. Let’s go visit the ocean without going to an insanely busy beach. Let’s go find waterfalls. Let’s go do any of the back-to-nature things I’ve been wanting us to do for over a decade now. Let’s go on a scenic drive. Let’s listen to a Harry Potter book on tape while we drive to some destination that is significantly less important than the trip to said destination. Lets go someplace where we can see stars (this one can’t happen this weekend because Harry works at night).

Let’s do something different. The friggin’ pandemic has locked us in for 2.5 years. Going to Boston last weekend scratched an itch that I had forgotten I had. Now I want to do everything and go everywhere. I still want to stay away from people and I still don’t want to spend any money on anything, but I want to do something. I want to go somewhere. I want to see stuff.

I also want to see my mother a few times, and I want to watch the last (2.5 hour long!) episode of Stranger Things with Jen, and I want to spend time with Harry while we still can before he goes back to school.

I guess I am just being greedy. I want everything and I want it now.

Bed Time Thoughts

I tried to watch Sunday night’s episode of Westworld before work this morning but HBO Max wouldn’t play the video for some reason. It’s playing now. Once it’s done I’m going to sleep.

My Apple Watch is charging. Once it’s done I’ll go to sleep, assuming the above item is complete. I actually just kicked off an update. Who knows how long that will take.

Speaking of my Apple Watch, the activity app’s calorie goal wasn’t reached until almost 10pm tonight. Not sure why it took so long this time. I’ll keep an eye on it.

I was looking at a Nikon D90 group on Flickr tonight. The newest discussion topic was two years old but I found a thread discussing shutter counts. Now I’m paranoid that my camera has too much mileage to be reliable. That’s bullshit, of course. I’m going to use it until it disintegrates, and probably keep using it after that.

Speaking of cameras, I really want to take another stroll around Boston. There is talk of the Aquarium this weekend. We’ll see.

That cat was laying down on Jen’s pillow a few minutes ago. It’s was as adorable as can be.

Okay, my watch is updated and Westworld is 2/3 finished. I think I’ll post this now. I hope you enjoyed it for it’s random stupidness.

Back to Vermont

Bellana left for Vermont today. She was on the road by 7:00am. I got up early enough to help her load some of the heavy stuff into her car. She’s moving back into her apartment after about eight months. She also has to be at work at 10:00am, hence the very early start.

We miss her already, and we’re already scheming for an excuse to drive up for a visit. Insert maniacal laughter here.

I did my exercise and my full morning routine today and still had time to go to the post office and drop off my padded envelope full of rolls of film. The package is on its way. Here’s hoping it gets to it’s destination in one piece. I’m actually a little nervous about that. We’ll see how it goes.

I have one more roll to finish. The Nikon is on shot #23 out of 36. I think I will probably go back to CVS for that one, just so I don’t have to deal with shipping and whatnot. Maybe I’ll see if Rite Aide or Walgreens handle film and try one of those. CVS was pretty crummy on the customer service end. Of course, I need to finish the roll first. That could take a while. After that we’re going full digital again until one of two things happen. One, I get a new lens for the Nikon (because the lens I have is kinda falling apart) or two, the Disneyworld trip in January where I plan to shoot one roll per day and go digital the rest of the time (though I am beginning to feel some concern about going through airport security with film). Film is expensive. I need to cool it a bit. I don’t want to stop entirely, but I also don’t want to blow money like this on a hobby. Digital it is.

The Methuen Post Office is downtown, so here are the obligatory red light pics:

August 1st.

In this one you can see the Spicket Falls dam, but the river is so dry right now that there is barely any water falling over the edge. Sorry.

Let’s Start the Day

It’s Sunday, the last day of July. Let’s make this a good one, shall we?

Today is our last day with Bellana for the summer. She’s moving back to Vermont early in the morning tomorrow. She’s at her Dad’s right now but will be coming here around lunch time.

I just setup my food/drink spreadsheet for today. Now I am having a protein shake, half of one at least, and then I am heading off to visit Mom. On the way home I will swap out the empty propane tank from our gas grill for a full one and then when Bellana get here we’ll have a cookout. After that it will be Stranger Things season four episode seven, as discussed yesterday, and then we’ll just hang out with Bellana one more time. Harry has to work this evening so we’ll lose him at some point, which makes me sad, but he’ll be here for some of the night. That’s good. Harry doesn’t move back to Vermont until the end of August, so we still have time to spend with him.

Today is going to be a good day. I can tell.

Okay, heading off to visit Mom for a while. Wish me luck.

Urban Road Trip

Harry hasn’t done many fun things this summer. He’s been working his ass off at the restaurant and hasn’t had time for much else.

Today, in the interest of mental health, we are going into Boston to just hang out. We have to be back somewhat early so he can go to work and I can visit Mom and Jen and I can watch an episode of Stranger Things. We are going to go to the North End, hit Harry’s favorite donut shop, and then wander around.

Of course a side effect of this mental health break is I will be taking both film cameras. The Nikon only has 8-9 shots left on its roll, but the Pentax has a full 36. When the Nikon runs out I’ll swap cameras. I just hope I’m not so obnoxious that I annoy Harry and Jen. Fingers crossed.

I seriously love Boston. My city.

Rough Visit

My father got to see my mother today for the first time in a long time. Mom recognized him but wasn’t in a good way. I suppose it could have been worse. When I got there she was in a rough place. It’s difficult, but I’d feel worse if I couldn’t get there.

Back at the house, Jen has introduced Harry to Arrested Development. We are burning through it at breakneck pace.

We are also planning to go for a walk in Boston tomorrow. Both film cameras are coming. When the Nikon runs out of film the Pentax will take over.

Until then, we are about 90 minutes away from winning Mega Millions. 1.1 Billion US dollars? I’ll take it.

55 Years

Today is my parents’ 55th wedding anniversary. On this day in the summer of love, 1967, those two crazy kids got hitched. They are not currently living in the same facility. Dad is in an assisted living place in Billerica and Mom is in a nursing facility in Andover. It’s devastating. Any time I visit Mom I try to call Dad so they can connect a little, but my Mother mostly doesn’t get what’s going on and it fails. Dad was insistent that he see her today, rightly so, and my brother is taking him. My brother saw Mom yesterday and it sounds like it was a pretty rough day for her. The fear is that the same thing will happen today and it will some how make things worse for both parents. When I try to pretend I am an optimist, I try to envision something in Mom’s head snapping into focus when she sees Dad. Fingers crossed. Really hoping something like that happens. Seriously.

Anyway, 55 years is a huge number. Do me a favor and take a second to wish my folks a happy anniversary. Maybe some happy vibes from the electronic universe will help them connect today. Wouldn’t that be great?

Things to Do in the Coming Days

Tonight after work I need to go to the store and buy a new belt. My jeans are kinda falling off and the belt I am wearing can’t go any tighter. It’s sort of an emergency at this point. A belt has been purchased online, I just need to go and get it.

After that, Bellana is super hyped about watching the first episode of season four of Stranger Things. We’re going to try and watch it tonight. Harry wants in too but he’s working and has an after-work task. Bellana’s at her aunt’s house. They are both going to be here tonight but they are going to be on the late side. We should still be okay but if not the make up date is Thursday.

Why Thursday? Because tomorrow night after work we are going to see the new Thor. Tomorrow is the make up date for the movie we were supposed to see over the weekend.

I also think I might be going somewhere and buying a lottery ticket tonight. The Massachusetts Mega Millions jackpot is pretty huge right now. Do I risk it? Where did I put my KN95 mask? Oh yeah, I have 100 of them and they are everywhere. Let’s do it!