Thursday, March 31, 2011

Daily Report: Still Here

It's been a cloudy week here in Florida, but still temperatures hover in the mid-70's, and there is always a gentle wafting breeze. It sure beats the hell out of winter in New York. If I'm going to be in America, this is as nice as you can get, weather wise: sunnier and far less humidity than Thailand, about the same temperature as The Philippines but a better breeze (now... by gods it was cold back in January though, fluke as it may have been).

When the clouds are not powdering or muddling the sky, I enjoy going to the pool at the clubhouse: There is a gymnasium, a hot whirlpool, and a cool swimming pool (as well as a billiard hall... nice!). It's Spring Break now and lots of families are down from up north enjoying the summer-ish weather; lots of kids splashing around having a good time.

I cooked my wife's family's recipe of sweet and sour chicken for Mom, Paul, and Mom's friend, Carol. It turned out okay: The taste was right, but the consistency needed improvement. I'll get that right the next time. I also bought all the ingredients to make a Singapore Sling. (Couldn't do that in Asia, believe it or not: Cherry brandy is not found in any liquor stores.) That was fun and packed quite a whallop.

Work on the website continues apace. It's all programmed now... but still the content has to be written and I want to get that right, hence the time involved.

Epril and I video chatted on Skype while she was at the beach this evening. It was her father's birthday, so she was back in Jasaan for the day but apparently got out of the family house and went off to the beach. It was nice to see a bit more of home than just Epril's front porch. I'm looking forward to showing Epril the beaches here in Florida. (Nearby Siesta Key actually ranks perennially on Conde Nast's "best beaches in the world" list.)

Big storms are scheduled here this evening. One downside about Florida as compared to the places I lived in Asia: Hurricanes and their kin. Nothing of the sort is coming now — just a bit of wind and rain, not a major tempest — but you never know when you're going to have to batten down the hatches. Fortunately this house has had all the necessary upgrades (roof, windows, et cetera) to withstand a direct hit by one of those huge storms. (I enjoy a bit of rain and am always prone to sit and pay witness to an especially ferocious storm, but I've never been through a proper hurricane before. Unless there is an order to leave at the next occurrence though, I will see one then.)

Other tidbits: Work is going well. I'm finishing reading the next Rutherfurd book, "New York". I got my taxes done finally. Puppy Gracie has learned to fetch her toy "Flat Rat" exceptionally well; from anywhere in the house. She spends most of her time walking around with the toy in her mouth, chewing on the "squeaky" noise maker, trying to find somebody to throw it for her so she can go running after. Paul laid down some patio bricks back behind the house to make a very nice evening place to sit and enjoy cocktails. (Next year, he'll be enclosing the back lanai and turning it into a second living room, brighter and airier than the first, so we needed a replacement "fresh air" location.)

Mom bought a new dishwasher for the house as well. Not too exciting, but I haven't seen modern appliances in a while, and I'm suitably impressed with the improved design and performance over what I had known in the past: It's so quiet you really don't even know it is on, and you can fit almost every pot and pan in the kitchen inside the same amount of space in which you could only fit the dirty dishes of dinner for 4 before.

That's it for now. If I wrote about any more non-eventful non-news, it might get a bit tedious!

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