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Shows You What I Know

According to Linda, one of my new friends from bridge, I was mistaken, our "juvenile" cardinal is most likely a he.

After bridge on Thursday morning, which by the way, I did a very good job of faking knowing what I was doing, we ate lunch together. I learned that not only is she a photographer, she is a birder, a ballroom dancer, a bridge player and exercises as well. Somehow the topic turned to birds, and our bird feeder;  I learned that the little crest on his head is a dead give away. So, there.

When we were young, you heard about mortgage burning parties. You don't any longer, however, I feel like having one. On Wednesday I went to the bank, withdrew the balance of our mortgage, and mailed it off. I feel good.
Not only is it a good feeling to not have debt, I'm delighted to no longer associate with Chase after the Bill situation. As such, I convinced Bruce to go out last night for a little celebration. While driving through downtown after seeing Corrine, I decided it was high time we walked around to see what we could see. Lots of new places are opening that we haven't tried. After roaming a bit we settled on Heat which is visually gorgeous--think Monsoon Wedding kind of gorgeous. The food, on the other hand, was mostly unattractive. This is my first time trying purple cauliflower which was allegedly deep fried with Asian sauce:
I say allegedly because it was not fried like anything I've ever had before! I've no idea how they are going to make it because the prices during "happy hour" are pretty darn cheap. You don't pay for a space like theirs with $4.00 tapas portions! I'd say it was about the least expensive date we've had in years. Afterwards we walked back to the car and roamed a little bit on some of the streets in Thorton Park. Lots of folks eating outside on the patios in the nice weather.

Another new spot which recently opened is The Abbey in the bottom of the Sanctuary condo tower. Lots of Sundays, after setting up my booth, Bruce roams around checking out the downtown scene. Earlier this year he went inside to see how the construction was coming. Let's check it out we thought. Arriving around 8:45, there were three people at the bar to go along with three bartenders. Entertainment was to begin at 9:30. Because Bruce knew he would be working from home, we decided to hang around a bit. The space is very well done, with what appears to be, no expense spared. Eventually two other couples came in to have a drink. No one else arrived aside from the entertainment. A girl and a guy, who call themselves, Jen & Dave. Their stage set up was simple, two bar stools, a chair for assorted drinks for Jen, and an electric acoustic guitar. We waited. Finishing our glass of wine and beer, we decided we were ready to head home. As we were walking out the door, she began singing. Not bad. As you well know, Bruce and I are sentimental types. Our son Bill has played lots of venues in the last 15 years, however, I don't think he's ever played to a completely empty house. Where were their families at least? As such, turning back around, we took a seat and listened for a few songs.
I know the picture is small, but please notice the chair on the left with the drinks. A can of Red Bull, several water bottles, gatorade, and maybe a glass of whiskey? Weird. I felt bad for them, and maybe folks came later, but we were ready for bed so we left. Gotta be really hard to play to an empty room.

Yesterday morning I took Baxter for his annual shots. The vet mentioned he needed his teeth cleaned, which isn't surprising; apparently bad breath in a dog comes from tartar build up just like it does in humans. That'll set us back, $300+. Maybe after our holiday....

This afternoon we're going to the old youth center. I'm pretty sure one had to be in the ninth grade before you could get your youth center card which was a really big thing. Dancing to live music was the draw, not to mention seeing, not only your friends, but teenagers from the other high schools. Those were the days! Because I moved away after the tenth grade, I've no idea how long it stayed open, but I do remember it was fun the times we went. There is a group called, Growing up in Orlando before Disney which is sponsoring the event. I'll let you know how it went.

Good news: Roger is finally home recuperating! Corrine is still hospitalized. This morning Bruce told me yet another of our neighbors has died. Three men in the last six months, all in their 80's. The one who lives closest to us, in the center of our cul de sac had mostly been reclusive since his wife died a few years ago. What makes me sad about that situation is that there were NEVER any cars at his house to indicate visitors. There were plenty once he died. Do me a favor--vist or call your loved ones while you still can.

The yard continues to obsess me. I am so happy we finally have color almost everywhere we look. Here's the view out my office window:
What a pleasure! Time to put on my game face for the reunion.....
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