The weather is changing. For the better! Actually humid! The TV weather channel projects a high of 76 today. The Miami news show this morning projected 83. Whatever, the good Key West weather is back!

I finished Dexter Filkin’s book The Forever Wars yesterday. I highly recommend it! About Iraq and Afghanistan today and in the recent several years.

The book made it increasingly clear to me that we never belonged in Iraq. One thing further is clear also. We will never change them!

The Shites and Sunnis have this muti thousand year war going all the time. They hate each other. No question about it.

There are distinctions between the Shites and Sunnis. One is the way they treat their enemies and captives. One group beheads them. The other is more modern. It uses electric drills on the legs and head. And in the event power is not available, then nails hammered into the head. A clear distinction between the two groups.

How disgusting! How barbaric! It will continue long after we are gone.

Why are we there? When will we leave?

Dinner last night at the bar at La Trattoria with friend Donna. Pleasant.

How does this sound? “Magical, mind altering lubricants for social intercourse.”

The statement is in very fine print at the top of La Trattoria’s martini menu. Cool! I never saw it before.

I walked over to Keys. This new piano bar seems to be making it. Packed at 10. Not a seat in the place! And I understand they are open and going strong till 4 in the morning!

It is Sunday! Love Sundays! As soon as I complete the blog, I will drive down the road to purchase the Sunday papers. Then home to read them at my leisure. Meet the Press at 10. Don’s Place this afternoon. And probably dinner with Lisa and the family tonight.

What could be better!

I started my morning yesterday with a haircut. Not a spectacular event in itself. However my lovely barber Lori has opened her own beauty salon. Just this week. So it was my first time in the new place.

It is called Blown Away. And it is as lovely as Lori herself!

Four hairstylists and soon a manicurist.

Blown Away is located just off Duval between Bank of America and Dunkin Doughnuts.

Afterwards I went over to the Coffee House to read the morning papers and enjoy a choco moca.

Lisa telephoned while I was there. Ally was sick. Temperature and sore ear. So off I went to visit my graddaughter.

Sick she was. Sad when they are so small.

I stayed for lunch. Turkey salad sandwich. What else!

Greg is a local contractor who looks after my home here in Key West. We have been talking about going out for ages. Last night we did.

The evening started at Aqua. I wanted to hear Vanessa Di Gennaro sing. She was her usual great self! And, of course, her mother and father were there also. Proud parents! Her Dad Mario is Mayor of Monroe County.

Dinner was at Antonia’s. The restaurant was full. Happy people enjoying themseves.

Then down Duval Street to the new Keys. Terri was singing. What a great voice! A talent! I already mentioned a few days ago that she is moving here from New York. She goes back north to the City Monday to get her things and bring them back. A welcome addition to the Key West family!

The Keys was sort of empty when I arrived. Within an hour the place was jam packed! It looks like it is going to succeeed.

I had a good time. Greg had a good time.

I got home a little later than usual. Around 11:30. And slept well! I made up for the night before when I only got 2 hours.

I did an absolutely stupid thing yesterday. I attribute it to old age.

I parked my car in the municipal lot behind Antonia’s when I went for my haircut. There were very few cars in the lot. I put about an hour of quarters in the meter. When I returned to my car, I had a parking ticket. $25! I had put the quarters in the wrong meter! See what a college education will do for you!

The sun is rising. The water is still. Very still. It is supposed to be a warm day today. Around 76. About time!

Enjoy!

Yesterday was a strange one. By day, the best! The evening sucked!

I enjoyed Thanksgiving dinner at 1 with Lisa and the family. The kids were terrific! They were into the holiday and the meal.

Lisa out did herself. The turkey and fixings could not have been better! She was up at 6 getting things ready. Robert and Ally were right there aside her, of course!

I ate and ate and ate. Even though I swore to myself earlier I would not. It never fails!

I was tired after dinner. So I plunked down in an easy chair to watch pro football. I dozed on and off for a couple of hours.

I returned home around 4. I decided to stay in last night, rather than hit Duval. Sort of a holiday cleansing thing.

Did not eat dinner. No room! Watched TV.

Climbed in bed around 8. Figured I would fall asleep around 10. Good luck! For whatever reason, sleep escaped me. It was 3:30 before I dozed off. And then I awoke at 5:30. Going to be a tough day!

To make matters worse, the cable TV went off around 11 and stayed off all night. I leave the TV on all night while I am sleeping. So, no sleep, no TV.

Around 1, I said what the hell, might as well go to the internet and do my blog. My computer would not hook up. Things were going well! Straight down hill!

I spent an hour in the middle of the night continuing to read Ron Susskind’s book about the Bush/Cheney lie about weapons of mass destruction. How could they! It will always be with us.

Sergio called last night. He wants to play golf today. I would like to. We have never played together. I told him I would call him this morning and let him know. I must have been intuitive. No way can I play on only 2 hours sleep. I am sufficiently old and sufficiently the poor player, that 18 holes after only 2 hours sleep would kill me!

My big thing for today is a haircut. With Lauri, of course! She has finally taken the big step. Not marriage! She opened her own business. No longer will she rent a chair. She now rents out chairs! I look forward to seeing her in her new salon this morning!

Other than that, I plan an easy day. However I will go out tonight! This staying in apparently does not work for me!

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!

I love holidays! A good family and friend time!

I am having dinner with Lisa, Corey and the grandkids. Robert and Ally are all excited! They are beginning to understand and appreciate these big days.

And to John and Allie who are visiting from Leeds, England, I wish you a most happy Thanksgiving day! Enjoy your time with Larry and Christine!

Golf yesterday.

I do not know why I play the game. I am never going to get better. Most times, I play worse than the previous week. Yesterday was one of those days!

I could not drive. My second shot was non existant. Forget pitching and chipping. And my putting was rediculous.

I shot 128! For shame!

I rode with Kurt. Kurt is not only a good guy, he is a gentleman! Yesterday was a big day for him. He shot a 72! Two over par. What a pleasure it was to watch him play!

And he never once said a word of criticism to me. He was always there helping to find my ball in the tall grass or shrubbery. All the while he had this great round going!

Kurt bartends at Don’s Place. Stop by and chat with him. You will like him!

Yankee Jack and Larry completed our four some. I, of course, was the big loser. Cost me $12. Kurt the big winner.

Last night was Bobby Nesbitt at Aqua at cocktail time. Always good! Primarily locals in attendance. Donna showed up.

We had dinner afterwards at the bar at Antonia’s. Quiet. I guess everyone was home cooking and preparing for today’s meal.

I was tired. Shooting 128 will tire any one out! Think of how many times I had to swing the club! So I went directly home after dinner. Donna was off to the Keys to see Terri and a late evening.

The powerhouse lesbians (as they describe themselves) are getting together for Thanksgiving dinner today at some one’s home. Donna, Terri and Mary Jo plan on going. Some sort of discrimination involved here. We of the other gender cannot attend.

I am looking out the window. An absolutely beautiful day in the making! There is something exhilerating about living on the ocean and seeing the mass of water every day! Good for the mind! Good for the soul!

Enjoy your day!

My day yesterday started with a Thanksgiving party at Montessori. My grandkids Robert and Allie were absolutely wonderful! Ah, a grandfather’s pride!

They each wore a pilgrim’s hat. Robert one of those big black ones and Allie a cute white bonnet.
They sang and prayed and then sat down to a Thanksgiving feast. And they had it all! Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, etc. So much food! And after the kids were fed, the adults were allowed to dive in.

I have done Montessori in upstate New York with one of my other grandchildren. Never anything like this! A feast! The affluence of Key West was reflected in the meal.

Dinner was equally delightful last night. I dined at La Trattoria with Donna and Terri. Donna is my lesbian friend. Terri is a lesbian also. They have become lovers. Holding hands in public and the like.

Terri continues to be an interesting woman. As you know, she is in love with Key West as well as Donna. Terri is going to settle here permanently. She told me last night it reminds her of New York’s Village 40 years ago when everyone knew each other, everyone was helpful to each other, everyone was concerned for each other and so on.

I also learned that for the past 4 years Terri has been opening for Liza Minelli in Las Vegas.

After dinner, I took the both of them over to the Pier House. I wanted Terri to meet Larry Smith. She did. She sang 2 songs. She wowed him! She wowed everyone in the room!

John and Allie from Leeds, England were there. I met them about 2 years ago at a dinner party at Larry and Christine’s home. They spend one month a year in Key West. John swears he reads my blog every day. He also occasionally e mails me.The blog keeps him up with Key West.

It was good to see John and Allie again. They are spending Thanksgiving with Larry and Christine. However at John and Allie’s place. John and Allie are cooking a special English meal for them.

Golf this morning! I am anxious to play. It is a bit on the cool side. Overcast. The high is projected at 73.

Have a good day!

A great day in the making!

The sun is bright, a cloudless sky, blue water and a comfortable temperature.

Today is a grandfather/grandkids day. Robert and Ally go to Montessori. They have some sort of show for their families at 11. I shall be there!

I had a good time last night. Sergio met me for dinner at La Trattoria. Sergio is good company! I enjoy being with him.

Afterwards we stopped at the Keys for a drink. Bobby Nesbitt was performing. Terri was singing also. A lot of people we knew. A pleasant time!

A simple evening spent with good people. As it should be.

The cold wave has moved on! The only problem is that another one is predicted starting Wednesday. Whatever, the sun is bright this morning, nary a cloud in the sky and the breeze is soft and comforting.

Syracuse beat Notre Dame Saturday! 24-23. An upset! Syracuse football has sucked for around 10 years. Notre Dame is only the third win of the season for Syracuse. And the season is almost over! Plus Syracuse fired their coach this past week prior to the game. A good win! Oh, how I long for the days of Syracuse football supremecy to return!

Yesterday was Sunday. A bit of a busy day for me.

In the morning, I drove to the gas station to buy the Sunday papers. Then home for breakfast and to read them.

Around noon Lisa came over. We sat outside in the sun for a couple of hours and chatted. Father/daughter talk. Good for the soul!

Sunday means pro football time. So after Lisa left, I was off to Don’s Place.

The place was mobbed! The food of the day was chili. It was Don’s Annual Chili Cookoff Day!

More than 20 entries.

I tried a few. Learned something. Never mix chilis! My stomach was boiling all afternoon!

Tino was taking pictures. You can see them at http://www.donscookoff.blogspot.com/. I am in the last two eating chili.

Tino, you are one great photographer! To describe it aptly, Don’s Place is a bit worn. Tino’s pics make the place look bright and shiny.

Then off to Lisa’s to play with the grandkids. They are excited about Thanksgiving! Especially 4 year old Robert. All he talks about is the turkey. This is the first Thanksgiving he appears knowledgable about the holiday.

My friend Donna had invited me to join her at the Waterfront Playhouse where she has season tickets for a show last night. On the way over, I stopped at the Pier house to talk with Larry Smith. However there was a wedding reception going on. So I said my hellos to him and then walked over to the Waterfront Playhouse.

The show at Waterfront was called Encore! Twenty five of Key West’s best vocalists sang Broadway tunes. One song per singer. Each came out, did his/her thing and was off the stage. Simple and sweet! Most good. Some great! I especially enjoyed Bruce Moore, Mike Mulligan and Randy Roberts.

After the show, Donna and I were in the mood for a nightcap. We stopped at Keys for a drink. Terri was singing. So good!

Mary Jo was there also. I ended up driving Mary Jo and Donna to their respective homes and then it was home for me!

All in all, a nice day! A Key West day!

There is a new star in Key West! Her name is Terri!

Terri is from New York City. She came to Key West recently for one week to appear as a singer at the new Keys piano bar. She has decided to stay, to make Key West her permanent home.

Terri has had a distinguished Broadway career. She received a Tony nomination for her work in the hit show Barnum. She won an Obie for her appearance in the off Broadway show The Club, in which she starred with Tommy Tune. She replaced the great Nellie Carter in Ain’t Misbehavin. And on and on and on!

Her voice is spectacular! You will enjoy listening to her.

And even more important, she seems to be a very nice person. Genuine would best describe her. Quiet and soft spoken. Another good soul joining the Key West family.

Some one is born, some one dies. Life moves on.

No one died. In this case, some one has come to Key West and some one has left. Key West lost one its charming members yesterday. Dotti Clifford.

Dotti has been in Key West for 28 years. Part of the fabric. Well, things are getting tough here as in the rest of the country. Actually the rest of the world. People are being laid off, cannot get new jobs. Such was Dotti’s plight.

So she bit the bullit. She left last night for Altoona, Pennsylvania to go to work in a family printing business.

Her sister Beth and brother in law Ted drove down to pick her up. They loaded a U Haul with Dottie’s possessions and left after dinner last night to drive back to Altoona.

It is a story being repeated many times in today’s society. Unfortuantely with increasing frequency. Shades of Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men!

We all had dinner at the Commodore before they left. Interestingly, it was uplifting and positive. I wish Dottie well.

Afterwards I stopped at La Te Da to hear Debra and Patrick. I am glad they are back. Class people with a class act!

Then across the street to the Keys for a drink. That is where I heard Terri sing. Actually it was the third time I have heard her perform. Again, she’s good! A talent!

And then home to bed.

Cold last night. I woke in the middle of the night freezing. I finally capitualted. I turned the heat on!

I wish it would warm up!

60s during the night and the low 70s by day is not to my liking. I prefer warm all the time.

It sounds strange to those who have not lived in this climate for a long time to hear someone complain that those numbers are uncomfortable. Especially my friends in upstate New York who right now are experiencing weather around 25 degrees and 10 inches of snow!

I have concluded that there is truth to the age old adage that one’s blood thins in a warmer climate. That is why this weather is bothering me. Remember it was only 3-4 weeks ago when we had daily temperatures in the low 90s. That is a 20-30 point drop in a short period of time. My blood has not thickened!

Oh, the problems of life! May they all be no worse than the weather I complain of.

I had a pleasant day yesterday.

Lunch at Paradise Cafe. A long one. I sat outside in the sun and read the Key West and Miami papers.

Then I stopped at Borders. I am close to finishing The Forever Wars by Dexter Filkins. A great book! About the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Those Iraqis are crazy! Not our culture! We are trying to customize them to our type society. Good luck! It will never happen. Thousands of years cannot be chaged overnight or over 10 years or over a 100 years. We are different peoples! So they now have a President and some sort of congress. Just a front to accomodate us.

The book indicates that the towns are really run by war lords. Fighting/killing is a common occurence. One community has a man who is in charge of beheading. That is his job! Like being the town hangman. He slices heads off. And then keeps them in his house to show off!

Something sick there.

It gets even better. Someone lost a son. The beheader wanted the parent of the dead son to know his death had been avenged. So after beheading the culprit, he plucked the eyes out and sent them over to the parent. A gift!

Revenge is a big part of the Iraqi culture. They apparently have a saying to the effect that……I shall drink his blood! In other words, if someone does you evil, you have the individual killed and drink his blood! Yes, that is what I said. To put it in factual context, an Iraqi woman lost her husband to a bad guy. A friend killed the bad guy and filled a vial with the dead guy’s blood. Then he took it to the widow who drank it down.

Why are we there? When are we getting out? Our societies are like oil and water. Never will mix! Never will blend!

A very revealing book! I recommend it for reading.

Last night I had a pleasant meal at the bar at La Trattoria. Then over to La Te Da. Debra and Patrick are back. It was their opening night. A huge crowd!

I walked across the street later to Keys. Stayed for a few moments to chat with friends.

And then home to bed. My evening was over by 11. I will never learn how to stay up late. It is not part of my nature.

Good morning!

Still cold! Colder up north, though!

I woke about 3 this morning. My ears and nose were freezing! Fortunately I fell back to sleep.

It is a bit colder where I live. My home is basically on open water. The bedroom faces north. The cold wind blows down on us from the north!

I started my day yesterday with lunch at The Westin. Specifically, the Bistro. I had a Symphony board meeting.

Sebrina Alfonso is both Driector and Conductor. She wears the business hat as well as the cultural one. And does a bang up job at both! Sebrina has 3 great concerts scheduled starting in January. If you have not already purchased season tickets, do so immediately. There are only a few left.

Last night was bocci! We did good! Won 2 out of 3 games!

We destroyed the opposition in the first 2 games. No competition! Then in the third game, the tide turned. As bad as we beat them in the first 2 games, they whipped our asses in the third.

Such is life! Such is bocci!

The competition was led by Jenny and Lindsey in the third game.

Jenny is my friend from Walgreen’s. She was deadly in that last game!

Lindsey was right on with Jenny in making those great and tough shots! Lindsey did not have good first and second games. No one on her team did. However someone has to be blamed. And her teammates seemed to be blaming Lindsey. Even her mother who plays on the team! They were going to bench Lindsey for the third game. But she complained, growled and frowned! She played! And well! Good for you, Lindsey!

We are all like family out there on the bocci courts. Lindsey announced last night she was pregnant. 9 weeks and 4 days. How is that for pride! And they yelled at her for playing poorly in the first 2 games. Enough! Leave this pregnant woman alone!

I hurried over to White Street after the bocci matches. Good friend Donna Barnett makes jewelry. Last night was the White Street Walk and she was showing some of her work at one of the galleries. I arrived before closing. Donna’s pieces looked terrific! Well done! I have seen Donna and many of her customers wearing her pieces. In every instance the jewelry enhanced the woman’s appearance! Seek Donna out and buy a piece of her talent. You will love it!

Then home to bed. Well before 10. Asleep early. Must be that is why I woke at 3 with cold ears and a cold nose!

Have a good day!