Thursday, January 14, 2010

Keeping in touch with family and friends.

Here are a couple of shots of Yours Truly from last October, while waiting to catch the plane in San Francisco. We had a couple of hours before our flight back to Virginia, which was more than enough time to call my brother-in-law and niece in Germany. Like the millions of people before me, I downloaded Skype a few months ago. In my second photo I am trying to show my family on the screen but it didn't quite work out, far too much glare from the lights above.

The reception inside the airport for wi-fi was brilliant. The picture was clear and no cutting in and out on the line. It makes me want to go up to Dulles to sit in their lounge as I am sure they have the same. At home it is a bit of a different story. Words tend to cut in and out and the photo is very pixelated at times. But am I moaning? Heck no!

This week I talked to a cousin and her husband - Patricia and Christopher - whom I haven't seen in 15 years and it was wonderful chatting with them. We talked two days in a row. Had to listen hard as between my bad hearing and the cutting in and out I missed some words but not enough to spoil the great conversation we had and the wonderful feeling of being able to get back in touch.

I also talked face-to-face for the first time with an old family friend, Dorothy. Dorothy and I have been e-mailing for years but we have never actually met in person. Her Mom and Dad were good friends of my parents and when we were little girls and visited them, Dorothy had married and moved away. Her parents I called my Aunty Mab and Uncle Joe. I loved them dearly. I wrote to them on a regular basis and through them and again through my letter-writing, I finally met Dorothy and we have been firm friends ever since, though have never actual met each other. Dorothy has just downloaded Skype too and it was lovely to be able to actually see her face to face as it were.

I love Skype!

Last night Gregg and I went to see Avatar. Kay over at Musings gave it a good report and that spurred me on. I had been thinking of seeing it for a while and had made my mind up to just go ahead and see it on my own that morning. None of my friends like sci-fi. I'm unusual that way! When I told hubs what I was going to do he said he didn't feel comfortable with me going on my own, and said if I was willing to wait he would go see it with me that night. Now, hubs isn't a big sci-fi fan so bless his heart, I could have kissed him. I not only wanted to see it on the big screen but wanted to check out the 3-D version, otherwise I would have waited for the DVD to come out. He won major cookie points with me as it really wasn't his cup of tea and apparently our son felt the same way, though our daughter-in-law enjoyed it and son knew I would. I did! I have always been a very visual person and the special effects were truly spectacular, and the costumes, well I think you all know now if you are a regular reader of my blog how much I enjoy anything to do with that. I always remember way back when, we had an exchange teacher from Sri Lanka at my school when I was very young. I think I have mentioned this before. One day she wore her traditional clothing. I was in awe. I think that's what started it all, I really do. So yes, Avatar for me was a great movie and all the other stuff you could take exception to went over my head. Sticking my head in the sand I may be, but I don't go to see a movie to think too long and too deep at what the overall message is. We see enough of the real world around us each and every day and it can be heart rendering, so I go see a movie to escape for a while.

Last Saturday I met up with friends and we saw Richard Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier at our local movie theatre. It was a televised version of a live performance from the New York Met. The music fantastic, the set and costumes incredible and I saw two of my favorite performers, Susan Graham and Renee Flemming. It was very long - we met up at 12.45 p.m. for a 1.30 start, two intermissions of 20 minutes each and we didn't get out of there until 5.45 p.m. I find it hard to sit for such a length of time and when I got up was very stiff and achy. It's hard enough for me to sit through an actual movie lasting two hours, but when all is said and done it was well worth the extra time. I felt myself nodding off a few times but I was not alone, one of my friends said something to the same effect.

A lady on my other side started chatting to me. Being the nosy person that I am and detecting an accent I asked where she was from originally and was told Germany. Her husband was American, a delightful couple in their 80s. During the intermission she told me about the German opera house in Munich where she grew up and which she had gone to with her mother, how she used to enjoy sitting in the balcony as a child. She also told me that it had been bombed in the war and remembers climbing over the rubble. They had eventually rebuilt it The people had organized what sounded like a grand raffle, and the government was going to give them the rest of the money but insisted on a modern structure. The people wanted it as it was before and they said very politely, no thank you, holding another grand raffle and finally getting enough money to build it as it used to be. I found it very interesting chatting to this nice lady, knowing that our countries had been at war all those years ago. Talking to our elders and I am fast becoming one of them I might add as my 60th birthday is around the corner, one can get such a wealth of stories from their past. Truly, I had such an enjoyable time listening to her. At the end of the performance we shook hands and went our separate ways. I hope I will bump into them again at one of the other performances.

I'm going to another movie with a friend tomorrow but can't remember what the name of it is now. This friend is from the neighborhood and we met when our boys were in the same class together at elementary school.

Our son is coming over for breakfast on Sunday. I asked him what he would like and he requested Poached Eggs on Toast. He knows how to make his Mum happy! I have been making him poached eggs since he was little.

That's what has been going on with me over the last week, and this is another long ramble over with!


  1. Looks like Mission Control to me Denise.{:)

  2. Gosh! I have never made a poached egg before although I saw it being done in the movie, Julie and Julia.

    I'm so relieved you enjoyed Avatar, Denise. We sure did have fun with that one. I still can't get over the special effects.

  3. Roy, you made me laugh, but then I thought yes it does, after you said that. Signing off as Denise, at Mission Control ;)

    Kay, it's one of those traditional english breakfasts that we as children grow up on in England. And yes I thoroughly enjoyed Avatar. Absolutely fantastic special effects. Thanks for the write-up about it.

  4. We have Skype also, Denise, and talk to our families that way. It's so NEAT...

    Sounds like you have had a busy time lately--getting to see several movies and meet interesting people. Isn't that what life is all about?????


  5. I enjoy your 'rambles' Denise :-)Keep them up!
    We are Skype fans too and found it useful when our son and his family were in NYC for two years. I also tutor my oldest grandson on Skype as he lives in Dorset and we're in Berkshire.

  6. Betsy from Tennessee, that's lovely Betsy and yes that's what life is all about :) Hugs, Denise

    jabblog, I'm glad, I do wonder if I go on a bit too long sometimes, but as this is also my journal and I enjoy looking back on what we have done, I seem to write about everything. How wonderful that you use Skype also, especially enjoyable to read you help your oldest grandson by tutoring him. That's the lovely side of Skype, keeping in touch with grandchildren when there is distance that prevents us from seeing them on a regular basis. Absolutely fantastic and the technology is just going to get better.

  7. We had our "Get Out of the Cold" vacation cut short and returned home today. For the past week I haven't had time to read or post blogs. I am catching up with my reading now. I'll post a blog sometime this week, once I get my thoughts and photographs from our vacation organized.

    I have Skype, although I haven't used it much. When I saw the photograph of you using Skype at the airport, I said to Bob "look at Denise; she is talking on Skype at the airport!" I guess I never thought of using it anywhere other than home until I saw that picture.

    Bob and I saw Avatar yesterday, at an IMAX theater. What a great movie!

  8. Linda (PA_shutterbug), sounds like you've had quite a busy time. I'll be popping over soon. I find it hard trying to catch up as I love to visit everyone's blogs but there don't seem to be enough hours in the day. Look forward to your vacation photos. I never thought of using Skype at the airport before either. It was the first time I ever did that. Glad you enjoyed Avatar.