Friday, June 1, 2007

Senorita Invierno Has Set Off! Let's All Help!

Here is the email Alison sent before stepping out on her adventure:

Dear big lump of people,

Just to let you know (if you don't already) I am about to embark on a little stroll across northern Spain which will take 4-5 weeks [almost 500 miles--KMS] . It's called The Way of St James, or El Camino de Santiago. Or The Milky Way.

Consequently I shall be more or less incommunicado. The landline for my flat has been disconnected (coz I ain't there) but I will have my Spanish mobile with me if anyone needs to contact me, though I'll only check it once a day or so. I will have Internet access quite regularly though I don't want to spend too much money on it. I hope to update my blog ( with details of my adventures bi-weekly or so, but I'm being deliberately non-committal. After all, I'm a pilgrim, and I want to leave modernity behind for a bit.

So it's me, a bag and incurable romanticism until July. Do write - it will make paying a euro to access my email all the more worthwhile. I will also experience my 28th birthday during this time. Grandmothers should note that conventional post is out of the question (it gets eaten by donkeys) and the urge to send birthday wishes should be curbed and restricted to email. Sorry Nanna. I will return to my Spanish flat for all of 2 days before returning to England on 12th July covered in Spanish dust. Looking forward to catching up with all of those I missed during my last pit stop and I hope everyone is bumbling along nicely.Hasta luego (see you later)
Ali xxxxx

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Alison's email address is (thealisonwinteratyahoodotcodotuk). I wrote it a little funny here so the spammers don't get it, but you know the drill: where it says "at" should be an @ and where it says "dot" you will put a period -- and no parentheses on either end. If each of you don't send her a little hi'ya and a prayer at least once a week (to help her euro pay off), I will be quite miffed! Her birthday is June 27th so mark your calendar and inundate her on that day with silly e-cards and well wishes. This is an amazing trek she will be taking. If you wonder what it's all about, read Paulo Coelho's THE PILGRIMAGE and you will get a taste of another man's journey along that most famous road. Alison will have her own story when she gets back. I can't wait to host her in August and pick her brain about her trip! It's so exciting I can hardly think straight!

And now... onto more mundane matters.. You will notice I'm blogging tonight when I said I wouldn't be. The card making gathering was postponed to next week. I guess the ladies decided to spend this lovely evening doing something outdoors while the sun is still shining and the day is still glorious. Makes sense to ME! Card-making is a favorite pastime of mine in winter, but in spring, summer and fall, I'm usually otherwise occupied unless a special occasion comes up and I just GOTTA make a special card. On Mother's Day I made a card for Jackie that made me cry when I wrote it and made her cry when she read it. It had a photo of our Mom on it. The sentiment was personal, so I won't repeat it here. But it was heartfelt and Jackie will be keeping that card as long as she lives, I'm guessing. I LOVE IT WHEN A PLAN COMES TOGETHER!

I'm watering my lawn (well, my soaker hoses are watering the lawn as I type this). I am pretty soaked because every twenty minutes I go out to puddle around and re-locate the hoses, and while I'm doing that I get spritzed quite royally. I've changed clothes twice now because I was soaked to the skin, but realize I mustn't be wet while using the keyboard unless I want to kill it, so, I'm dry where necessary and semi-soggy everywhere else. It is the way of homeowners without husbands, you know...

Tomorrow I will get a visit from a person "in the know" who will be looking over my condo and seeing what he thinks it will list for at the upper end. I cannot tell you how upset I was this morning to find that another condo in this complex has just been listed and the seller has listed it for at least 25K less than he should have -- but because he is in the military and has been relocated, he just wants to sell it fast and get out of Dodge. I have a feeling the next buyers who come along will think they should get MY condo for a similar price. Not even close!

I wish people would consider their neighbors when they decide to give away $25K! It sorta put a pit in my stomach. The last two condos that sold in this complex went for the price he's asking, and that was almost two years ago. In the Pacific NW, housing prices are still rising; in Lakewood, they're rising about 18 percent a year, so this fellow could have sold for much more than he's asking... but of course I understand that he needs to move. It isn't like he has a choice and plenty of time. The military says, "Jump!" and a military man says, "How high?" I get that. I can't be really, really mad at him for that reason... he's one of our heroes and a great guy... but my heart did sink when I saw what he listed his condo for! I thought a dirty word that started with S. I was disappointed, to say the least, horrified to say the most.

Oh, well! It is what it is!

The Inquisitor just moved to a very tall building literally one block away from where De and Carolyn lived for 42 years -- their last home together that wasn't a hospital. I am sad to report that the people who bought the home and property after Carolyn passed away in 2004 razed it and replaced it with a McMansion.

The Kelley home was just the most comfortable house I ever walked into -- and surprisingly small, which may surprise some of you. I even asked the Kelleys if I could borrow and copy the blueprint for it because I wanted (and want) to build one for myself if I can ever afford it. They loaned me the blueprints to copy and I am going to try to locate them in my Kelley treasures this weekend in the garage, because if we could build two of them with the garages butted together, we'd have the duplex of our desire and I'd have the home of my dreams -- and I think Jackie would love the layout and size of the home, too. I don't think there were many more than 1200 square feet in the entire house, but it was a wonderful, wonderful home... The thought that it is not there anymore makes me very sad if I sit and dwell on it -- so I DON'T! That way lies madness!

Will each of you do me a favor who are reading this blog? If you have never emailed me before, would you just send me a quick e-mail with the subject heading, "I read your blog!" My email address is (KRISTINEMSMITHatMSNdotCOM). You don't have to identify yourself and I won't
e-mail you at all unless you give me permission, and I won't harvest your email addresses, either. I just want to know how many people are checking out this blog. I suppose there is a way to put a counter on the site, but I haven't a clue how to do that, or I would. Can someone guide me through that?

Guess that's all the news that's fit to print for tonight. I only slept about three hours all night last night (too much green tea until late in the afternoon) so I will go and move the hoses one more time, wait twenty minutes, then turn off the water and hit the hay and hope to sleep until at least 6 a.m. tomorrow. Yeah!

1 comment:

Alison said...

Hola! Thanks for rounding up supporters for me. I´m about to go to the beach!

Could you modify your entry so that my email address is written differently? Spammers will grab it otherwise. You can write it like so:

(thealisonwinteratyahoodotcodotuk) and spammers/malicious software can´t pick up on it. I´d recommend doing the same for yours. Brackets also help!

Ciao for now. I´m still waiting for my luggage!