Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sunday Song, Life During Wartime

War Movies

Mostly Sunny - Hi 100 Lo 75 for Baghdad, Iraq
Sunny - Hi 85 Lo 58 for Qandahar, Afghanistan
Sunny - Hi 83 Lo 60 for Northern KY, USA

Song of the week: Life During Wartime,
Talking Heads

As you know, Talking Heads is one of my all time favorite bands. The video clip is from the movie Stop Making Sense... which as you know was my all time favorite concert ever ever ever. The music is driving and makes you at minimum tap your foot at maximum get up and dance or work out... but listen to the words... a little disturbing...

Ramble: So, I haven't done a movie list in quite a while... I thought it was time... You ask, "What's the category?" That's easy! My Favorite War Movies! So without further delay and in no particular order:

-- Please stop the music video above if you intend to watch any of the trailers.

Saving Private Ryan, 1998

Lawrence of Arabia, 1962

Patton, 1970

The Longest Day, 1962

The Bridge on the River Kwai, 1957

The Dirty Dozen, 1967

The Guns of Navarone, 1961

Tora! Tora! Tora!, 1970

We Were Soldiers, 2002

Braveheart, 1995

M*A*S*H, 1970

The Alamo, 1960

The Big Red One, 1980

From Here to Eternity, 1953

The Sullivans, 1944

Since You Went Away, 1944


Heard of a van that is loaded with weapons
packed up and ready to go
Heard of some gravesites, out by the highway
a place where nobody knows
The sound of gunfire, off in the distance
I'm getting used to it now
Lived in a brownstone, lived in the ghetto
I've lived all over this town

This ain't no party, this ain't no disco
this ain't no fooling around
No time for dancing, or lovey dovey
I ain't got time for that now

Transmit the message, to the receiver
hope for an answer some day
I got three passports, couple of visas
don't even know my real name
High on a hillside, trucks are loading
everything's ready to roll
I sleep in the daytime, I work in the nightime
I might not ever get home

This ain't no party, this ain't no disco
this ain't no fooling around
This ain't no mudd club, or C. B. G. B.
I ain't got time for that now

This ain't no party, this ain't no disco
this ain't no fooling around
No time for dancing, or lovey dovey
I ain't got time for that now

Heard about Houston? Heard about Detroit?
Heard about Pittsburgh, PA?
You oughta know not to stand by the window
somebody see you up there
I got some groceries, some peanut butter
to last a couple of days
But I ain't got no speakers
ain't got no headphones
ain't got no records to play

Why stay in college? Why go to night school?
Gonna be different this time?
Can't write a letter, can't send no postcard
I can't write nothing at all
This ain't no party, this ain't no disco
this ain't no fooling around
I'd love you hold you, I'd like to kiss you
But I ain't got time for that now

Trouble in transit, got through the roadblock
we blended in with the crowd
We got computers, we're tapping phone lines
I know that ain't allowed
We dress like students, we dress like housewives
or in a suit and a tie
changed my hairstyle so many times now
don't know what I look like!
You make me shiver, I feel so tender
we make a pretty good team
Burned all my notebooks, what good are notebooks?
They won't help me survive
My chest is aching, burns like a furnace
the burning keeps me alive

Have a great week everyone!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Sunday Song, Joy to the World

O.J. is a Forewarning...

Sunny - Hi 106 Lo 77 for Baghdad, Iraq
Isolated Thunderstorms - Hi 92 Lo 59 for Qandahar, Afghanistan
Sunny - Hi 90 Lo 66 for Northern KY, USA

Song of the week: Joy to the World,
Three Dog Night

Three Dog Night will always have a special place in my heart. This song particularly is one of just a couple of fond memories I have of my father. He loved this song. I remember he used to sing it loudly and badly...


Back in the fall of 1995, the day the jury found O.J. Simpson not guilty... I received a call from my grandfather. "Cass, are you sitting down? Guess who is sitting with me? Your Daddy." Twenty four years. Twenty four years. That's how long it takes a father to show up. I'd like to say it was because his overwhelming guilt got the best of him and he after so many years was trying to make amends... but that was not the case.... He was looking for a handout. Checking to see if my grandparents were still among the living. He even had the audacity to ask about my mother. I made it clear to him... under no uncertain terms was he to go anywhere near her.

This past Friday evening my grandfather called me.... "Cass, guess who just called?" It was such a deja vu. I knew before he even said anything- it only makes sense, the murderer, O.J. Simpson is back in the news... my father resurfaces... perfectly logical to me... My grandfather told me about his conversation and I completely chastised him for speaking to him for such a long time. My grandfather has such a tender heart and I can only imagine the guilt he must carry. He feels responsible for the kind of man my father became. My grandfather is an incredible man. He is kind and responsible and loving. I guess according to my grandfather- the sperm donor had called my Uncle Steve and also my brother. He asked my grandfather for my phone number but thankfully did not provide it. According to my Uncle, he was drunk... debating on whether to go to Hawaii or Alaska... Back in 1995 he was working on fishing boats... I guess he had been doing that the entire time he had been gone and it is no different now.

I'm 42 years old. The emotions when allowed to surface are just as raw today as they were when I was 12 years old. The hurt cuts deeper than I would ever like to admit and I surely do my best to keep it to myself.

He did some shitty things...some unforgettable things. Have a forgiven him? On a good day. Yes. Right now? Not so much. He beat my mother, he threw my brother across the room, he would blow entire paychecks on gambling, he would steal money from my brother and me, he stole money from my mom, she would beg him for money to feed Terry and me and he would give her $5.00, he would disappear for weeks on end, he would use me as a decoy to go visit his multiple girlfriends leaving me in a strange house in a living room in front of a television, after he left, he made no attempt to contact us except once, possibly twice, he never sent my mother money. He was a selfish childish little man.

I'm angry at some of the men in my extended family- it turns out that my father had stayed in contact, all be it sporadic. No one told us. I don't have the courage to ask any of them if they ever asked my father to be a man and take responsibility for his family... send some money once in a while...

We were better off without him in our lives... my constant need of approval from father figures is fall out to this day... My behavior as a teenager also a direct result of looking for approval, acceptance and love from the opposite gender...

I'm still pissed. Angry and hurt and I don't know if this anger will ever go away. So, OJ Simpson pisses me off... Every time that son of a bitch shows up in the news.... my father, the sperm donor resurfaces... both of you... just go away.....................

Read more here:

2006 reflections of my father

2005 reflections of my mother

Have a great week everyone!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Past My Bedtime....

Sunny - Hi 106 Lo 81 for Baghdad, Iraq
Sunny - Hi 101 Lo 65 for Qandahar, Afghanistan
Sunny - Hi 74 Lo 52 for Northern KY, USA

Song of the week: Ain't No Mountain High Enough, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell

There are some songs that just make you smile and cause you to sing along at full voice regardless of one's ability (in my case- definite inability). This song will pull me out of the worst of moods... it will elevate an already good mood right into the stratosphere. And the song, once heard will stay with me the entire day. This song causes people to smile when they hear it on the radio. It is a song of hope and love and caring and feeling secure and safe and having the knowledge that someone loves you so much they will do whatever it takes to protect you and keep you safe. This song sets a tone and is often used in movie soundtracks. I think my favorite has to be Remember The Titans-- I even like the scene in Stepmom... I'm so tired right now, I'm blanking on other movies... In any event, this song emotes my feelings for everyone I love and care for... especially Michael.


No ramble, it's 2:30 A.M. and I am winding down from a long day of cleaning and prepping for JoAnna's baby shower this afternoon. I still have a couple of things to do, but will have to wait until morning. In the meantime, as I type this, Michael is doing all the food prep for the shower (Note: I don't know how to cook). Anyway, go here if you would like to guess her due date. I swiped another pic from Rob's blog... This is the most recent picture of JoAnna-- August 30th.

Place your bets here.

Blogs and Links to Check Out This Week:

I haven't checked out any new blogs in a very long time. In looking up information on Tammi Terrell, I stumbled across this little gem of a blog: Plain or Pan? Outdated Music for Outdated People -- Fun and quirky. I like how he will compare different versions of the same song...

Ain't No Mountain High Enough

Listen, baby
Ain't no mountain high
Ain't no valley low
Ain't no river wide enough, baby

If you need me, call me
No matter where you are
No matter how far
Just call my name
I'll be there in a hurry
You don't have to worry

'Cause baby,
There ain't no mountain high enough
Ain't no valley low enough
Ain't no river wide enough
To keep me from getting to you

Remember the day
I set you free
I told you
You could always count on me
From that day on I made a vow
I'll be there when you want me
Some way, some how

'Cause baby,
There ain't no mountain high enough
Ain't no valley low enough
Ain't no river wide enough
To keep me from getting to you

No wind, no rain

My love is alive
Way down in my heart
Although we are miles apart
If you ever need a helping hand
I'll be there on the double
As fast as I can

Don't you know that
There ain't no mountain high enough
Ain't no valley low enough
Ain't no river wide enough
To keep me from getting to you

Don't you know that
There ain't no mountain high enough
Ain't no valley low enough
Ain't no river wide enough

Have a great week everyone!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

A Life Remembered: Tom Burnett

Tom Burnett's name is probably one of the most recognized names of those that perished on September 11. Tom Burnett was a born leader and up until his last moments in this life, he continued to work the problem and never saw failure as an option that fateful day. There is little I can add to these accounts. His heroic actions have been documented in the 9/11 Commission Report, in movies, in documentaries, on countless websites and books. His wife, Deena keeps Tom's memory alive through the Tom Burnett Family Foundation. Tom often said that one of the most-noble pursuits in life is raising our children to be “good citizens.” The Tom Burnett Family Foundation is dedicated to helping young people in this country to become good citizens and future leaders, so his legacy will go continue.

On a personal note, everything I have read, everything that I have learned about this man, I would have liked him very much. He would have had my profound respect. I could see myself flying his flag at work and following his lead. He was a man of conviction, integrity and strong moral character. I would have loved working for a man of this caliber.

Born and raised in Bloomington, Minnesota, Tom attended public schools Ridgeview Elementary, Olson Middle School, and graduated with honors from Thomas Jefferson High School. Wearing number 11 in high school, Tom played quarterback for the Jefferson Jaguars and was recruited to play football by several universities and chose Saint John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota. He enjoyed the conversations and discourse with the Benedictine monks who lived there, and often said his experience provided incredible depth to his faith in God. After two years, an injury shortened his football career and he transferred to the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. He was named President of the Alpha Kappa Psi Fraternity, then later graduated with a B.S. degree in Finance. Working with Thoratec, a medical device company, he climbed the ladder to corporate success quickly. He received an M.B.A. degree from Pepperdine University and was making plans to work on his doctorate.

By 1989, he'd met Deena in Atlanta, where she'd just completed flight-attendant training for Delta Airlines. Their first date was at an Applebee's where they spent six hours talking. She knew she would marry him after he unscrewed the light bulb above the table and tossed it over his shoulder, shattering it on the floor. "I'm trying to create a mood here," he told her, "and this light's not helping." They married in April 1992 after a "romance in the air." Since Burnett traveled all week, the couple would meet in airports, or Deena would leave notes for him on planes. They agreed they were as comfortable in planes as they were in cars. But in 1995, when Deena was expecting, she stopped flying.

Years later, as senior vice president and chief operating officer of Thoratec Corp., known nationally for its creation of heart assist pumps, he was successful beyond his earlier dreams. Burnett would tell his wife, Deena, that he couldn't believe his achievements.

Articulate and competitive, a motivator who could talk a person into almost anything, Burnett was a born salesman. While he couldn't talk his mother into letting him fish from the edge of a dock as a 3-year-old, he did persuade her to let him sit in the middle of it and drop his line through the cracks.

Burnett entered fatherhood on his own terms. He liked pushing their three girls around the neighborhood in the stroller, but only while smoking a cigar. Diapers, baths and feeding were on an as-needed basis.

For all his traveling, Burnett was cautious. Long wanting to parachute, he backed out when the chance came, worrying about his family. And when the two of them left for a vacation, he insisted they take separate planes so an accident wouldn't leave the children parentless.

By Deena’s own telling, her husband of nine years thought of himself as anything but a hero. He was a man who, at thirty-eight, held a senior executive position at a respected medical device company headquartered in Pleasanton, California. He was a loving husband and father who adored his three young girls. He worked hard, was respected by his colleagues, and, on a daily basis, practiced quiet acts of integrity, honesty, respect, and kindness toward those with whom he came in contact.

“He was a man of heartfelt compassion, deep convictions, love, and had a keen sense of right and wrong, and he believed that morals and values were not debatable. To have died with such honor and valor is befitting of my husband.

“His actions, and those of his fellow passengers, are a call to each of us to stand for our beliefs and convictions,” Deena continued. “If he were here tonight, he would ask you to go one step further and to honor him by living a life worthy of those who have died for our freedom, and to remember that heroes can give their lives all at one time, or they can give a little each day.”

Tom lived his last minutes of life they way he had lived all the previous minutes. He knew what he and his fellow passengers were facing. Tom took the lead and organized the effort aboard United Flight 93. Allowing the terrorists to succeed was not an option. He and the passengers of Flight 93 died heroically. They thwarted the efforts of the bad guys. Yes, Tom Burnett was a citizen soldier.

6:27 a.m.( pacific time) First cell phone call from Tom to Deena

Deena: Hello
Tom: Deena
Deena: Tom, are you O.K.?
Tom: No, I’m not. I’m on an airplane that has been hijacked.
Deena: hijacked?
Tom: Yes, They just knifed a guy.
Deena: A passenger?
Tom: Yes.
Deena: Where are you? Are you in the air?
Tom: Yes, yes, just listen. Our airplane has been hijacked. It’s United Flight 93 from Newark to San Francisco. We are in the air. The hijackers have already knifed a guy, one of them has a gun, they are telling us there is a bomb on board, please call the authorities. He hung up.

6:31 Deena calls 911

6:34 The phone rang in on call waiting, Tom’s second cell phone call.

Deena: Hello
Tom: They’re in the cockpit. The guy they knifed is dead.
Deena: He’s dead?
Tom: Yes. I tried to help him, but I couldn’t get a pulse.
Deena: Tom, they are hijacking planes all up and down the east coast. They are taking them and hitting designated targets. They’ve already hit both towers of the World Trade Center.
Tom: They’re talking about crashing this plane. (a pause) Oh my God. It’s a suicide mission…(he then tells people sitting around him)
Deena: Who are you talking to?
Tom: My seatmate. Do you know which airline is involved?
Deena: No, they don’t know if they’re commercial airlines or not. The news reporters are speculating cargo planes, private planes and commercial. No one knows.
Tom: How many planes are there?
Deena: They’re not sure, at least three. Maybe more.
Tom: O.K….O.K….Do you know who is involved?
Deena: No.
Tom: We’re turning back toward New York. We’re going back to the World Trade Center. No, wait, we’re turning back the other way. We’re going south.
Deena: What do you see?
Tom: Just a minute, I’m looking. I don’t see anything, we’re over a rural area. It’s just fields. I’ve gotta go.
He hung up.

6:45 a.m. Third cell phone call from Tom to Deena

Tom: Deena
Deena: Tom, you’re O.K. (I thought at this point he had just survived the Pentagon plane crash).
Tom: No, I’m not.
Deena: They just hit the Pentagon.
Tom: (tells people sitting around him “They just hit the Pentagon.”)
Tom: O.K….O.K. What else can you tell me?
Deena: They think five airplanes have been hijacked. One is still on the ground. They believe all of them are commercial planes. I haven’t heard them say which airline, but all of them have originated on the east coast.
Tom: Do you know who is involved?
Deena: No
Tom: What is the probability of their having a bomb on board? I don’t think they have one. I think they’re just telling us that for crowd control.
Deena: A plane can survive a bomb if it’s in the right place.
Tom: Did you call the authorities?
Deena: Yes, they didn’t know anything about your plane.
Tom: They’re talking about crashing this plane into the ground. We have to do something. I’m putting a plan together.
Deena: Who’s helping you?
Tom: Different people. Several people. There’s a group of us. Don’t worry. I’ll call you back.

6:54 a.m. Fourth cell phone call to Tom to Deena

Deena: Tom?
Tom: Hi. Anything new?
Deena: No
Tom: Where are the kids?
Deena: They’re fine. They’re sitting at the table having breakfast. They’re asking to talk to you.
Tom: Tell them I’ll talk to them later
Deena: I called your parents. They know your plane has been hijacked.
Tom: Oh…you shouldn’t have worried them. How are they doing?
Deena: They’re O.K.. Mary and Martha are with them.
Tom: Good. (a long quiet pause) We’re waiting until we’re over a rural area. We’re going to take back the airplane.
Deena: No! Sit down, be still, be quiet, and don’t draw attention to yourself! (The exact words taught to me by Delta Airlines Flight Attendant Training).
Tom: Deena! If they’re going to crash this plane into the ground, we’re going to have do something!
Deena: What about the authorities?
Tom: We can’t wait for the authorities. I don’t know what they could do anyway.
It’s up to us. I think we can do it.
Deena: What do you want me to do?
Tom: Pray, Deena, just pray.
Deena: (after a long pause) I love you.
Tom: Don’t worry, we’re going to do something.
He hung up

"Don't worry, we're going to do something."- Tom Burnett

Thomas Edward Burnett Jr.
May 29, 1963 - September 11, 2001

Tom Burnett Family Foundation
Among the Heroes: United Flight 93 and the Passengers and Crew Who Fought Back, by Jere Longman
Post Gazette
September 11 Victims
Pepperdine University Press Release

Also for Project 2996:

from 2006 A Life Remembered: Marion Britton
from 2007 A Life Remembered: Deora Bodley

A Life Remembered: Deora Bodley

I have volunteered for a second year to write a memorial for Project 2996. Like last year I wanted to remember the heroes from United Flight 93. Dale left it up to each person that volunteered to pick a name(s) of our choice. I chose 2 names from Flight 93 that did not receive a memorial last year.

I first read about Deora Bodley in Jere Longman's book, Among the Heroes. She was an idealistic 20 year old. She was the youngest passenger aboard United Flight 93 and was heading back to California, back to her junior year at Santa Clara University when her life was tragically ended despite the courageous acts of her fellow passengers and crew.

At the tender age of eleven she wrote, "People ask how, what, where, when and why. I ask peace." When I read those words, I remembered what it was like to be a child and have everything as a possibility. I remember thinking I could make a difference and the world could be a better place. At the age of eleven or even twenty there are no boundaries there are only opportunities. That is how this young woman lived her short precious life.

By coincidence, Deora and I share a birthday. She was born on April 8, 1981 to loving parents, Deborah (Bodley) Borza and Derrill Bodley. Her parents divorced when Deora was only two years old. This possibly contributed to her being introspective and wanting to help others. She was active in school, captain of the basketball team her senior year in high school, she participated in an AIDS peer program, and volunteered with the Special Olympics and at her local animal shelter.

As a twenty year old, she wanted a world without war and disease. She lived her life focused on making a contribution to this dream. Her love of writing and her ability to speak fluently in French, contributed to her success while she attended Santa Clara University and participated in America Reads program tutoring children with reading and writing. One of the children wrote, "Deora made the sun shine brighter." She made it a point to help children whenever possible as she did for a pair of Vietnamese twins in the literacy program that came from Toronto. She translated stories from English to French for them. It was obvious Deora had a natural gift in working with children. Her major in college was Psychology and her goal was to become a child psychologist.

Deora was a wide eyed young woman. The world was her oyster. She loved her family and friends and there is no doubt that they love and miss her still. Her life lives on in those she loved and the lives she touched.

"If I would just live for the moment and make every moment count, maybe the future would work out. Maybe that moment would be a doorway to the future." - Deora Bodley, age 13

Deora Frances Bodley
April 8, 1981 - September 11, 2001

Among the Heroes: United Flight 93 and the Passengers and Crew Who Fought Back, by Jere Longman
Post Gazette
SFBA Flight 93 Memorial
Deora's Candles - features a jazz composition written by her father Derrill Bodley, who passed away in September 2005. Steps to Peace, a song he composed right after Deora's death was later recorded by Dave Brubeck.

Also for Project 2996:

from 2006 A Life Remembered: Marion Britton
from 2007 A Life Remembered: Tom Burnett

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Sunday Song, Fragile

Never Forget

I saw this video over at Chicago Ray's. And like Ray, I thought I had seen all the footage from the World Trade Center terrorist attack. I was wrong. This is homemade footage and is just shy of 30 minutes- there isn't a soundtrack... only the gasps and comments from those in the room and the videographer.

If you need a reminder or if you have forgotten... you must watch this.

Please stop the other video that is running prior to playing this (or any other video.)

Another Sunday...

Sunny - Hi 106 Lo 83 for Baghdad, Iraq
Isolated Thunderstorms - Hi 97 Lo 68 for Qandahar, Afghanistan
Scattered Thunderstorms - Hi 83 Lo 65 for Northern KY, USA

Song of the week: Fragile,


Sorry, but no ramble today. I am working on my tributes for Project 2996 for Deora Bodley and Tom Burnett. I posted quite a bit this past week so feel free to read through those if you like.

I'll have my tributes up by September 11 so please come back.

One quick note to my hubby.

Happy Birthday, Michael!

I love you!

Have a great week everyone!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Cleveland Air Traffic Control

This is the recording of Cleveland Air Traffic Control trying to contact United Flight 93 on that awful day.

Budweiser Remembers

We are fast approaching September 11. This was sent to me by my boy Kyle. According to the email, Budweiser only aired this commercial one time so as to have the focus on remembering those lost and to not generate revenue. Doesn't matter. It is a fine tribute and one that makes me teary eyed.

A Needed Get Away, Part 6

We left Cleveland and headed home. About an hour south we wanted to make a stop at Grandpa's Cheesebarn.... yes.... Grandpa's Cheesebarn. This is a place I have seen for years as we drive up and down I-71... I've always been curious. Well, with Patricia, she was game... so we went. The downstairs is an icecream parlor and brick-a-brack shop. Upstairs (in the barn) is where the cheese is... Let me tell you... Grandpa had it going on.... canned fruit, preserves, jams, pickles, and cheese.... If you like cheese... this was an incredible place... The cheeses were unique and tasty... We had to buy some...

So, that ends our little road trip...

Friday, September 07, 2007

A Needed Get Away, Part 5

We woke up at our leisure the next morning and had breakfast in the dining room. Afterwards we took another stroll around the campus in the opposite direction and decided it was time to head into the city.

Patricia had not seen Cleveland in 37 years... it was time. We took Euclid all the way into town. One thing about Cleveland... the streets are horrid. You can not call them roads... maybe one large continuous pot hole... Anyway, it looks as though they are putting in a light rail down Euclid which made the drive awful... lots of orange barrels and driving on shoulders. Businesses must be taking a beating. The inability to get to the entrance of a building will definitely stop patronage.

As you get closer to the city, there is a section of town that looks deserted... an area where you don't walk alone at night... or during the day... Up on the right behind the orange barrels was an Econoline-- old rusted, beat up... a couple of police cars. Michael was driving and as we passed... it was apparent that this was a crime scene-- violence, serious assault, possible homicide? I don't know. I did not see anything in the Plain Dealer about it. The back of the van was open and a police officer was taking photos... not something you want to see everyday...

On over to Tower City... That whole area was also torn to bits... so it was quickly decided for us that shopping would not be on the agenda. I don't think Michael was real torn up over that... Instead, we made our way over towards Burke Lakefront Airport and the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame. Typically, Michael and I make the trek up to Cleveland every year to see the Cleveland Air Show, but this year we had not made any concrete plans until the last minute. We parked at Burke and walked back towards the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame. There is a great little museum right on the lake-- it is a WWII era submarine called the USS Cod. If you are in the Cleveland area, this is a little gem of a museum. Over Labor Day Weekend (and I would imagine other holidays), they have folks dressed as WWII era sailors, there are folks camped out in tents and kids seem to really enjoy it.

We walked down to the George Voinovich Bicentennial Park. Because George has been doing a lot of crying of late... Michael wept a few tears on Mr. Voinovich's behalf. Why did they name this piece of earth after him??

A lot of folks were sitting over in this area watching the airshow.... free... not bad... but they are missing all the up close and in your face stuff... to each his own.

The airshow was on top of us and nothing makes me happier than seeing one of these behemoth's flying overhead. I just love the C-17 Globemaster. Click for a larger "in your face" view.
Moon over the Hall of Fame.

The best part was that Patricia had never seen anything like this before... ever. And she really enjoyed it. She was dazzled by the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team and amazed by Sean Tucker flying like a mad man. A little later an F/A-18 Hornet took to the skies and since Michael and I have been to a couple of these we knew to expect a high speed fly by. My mother in law was blown away! I wish I had gotten that picture. Terrific. In hindsight, we should have stayed so she could have seen the Thunderbirds in their F-16's...

My most favorite aircraft-- The C-130. Herkeng, you'll have to tell me exactly which one this is. Behind it, you can see a WWII/Korean War era F4U Corsair. As we left Cleveland the C-130 took to the skies and if you have ever been to Burke... well the C-130 is as large as the runway...

We left Cleveland... if you've never been... it is a wonderful place for a quick getaway. The city has something for everyone-- sports, amusement parks, museums of all kinds, the arts, the neighborhoods, the lake.... it's a great time.

One final post... Grandpa's Cheesebarn...

Thursday, September 06, 2007

A Needed Get Away, Part 4

The Hungarian restaurant we wanted to go to, Balaton, was closed for the holiday. So, it was suggested we head to Little Italy where we ate at Maxi's. It was a cozy atmosphere- the food was good although a little overpriced. The best part of the meal was the drama between the wait staff and kitchen staff. There were only 2 servers and they were excellent. Based on our observations Patricia and I decided that the cook and one of the servers had a thing going on. We created a fun little scenario about love and betrayal and life in Little Italy... So all in all we had a lovely time.

Afterwards, we headed back towards the University and made our way to a little place called the Barking Spider Tavern. It was a nice mix of locals and college students and gave us a real feel for the folks in this area. We sat outside and had a couple of frosty beverages (actually I had a glass of wine) and listened to the folk band through a couple of sets.

All in all, we had a full day.

I think one, possibly two more posts on our jaunt will do it...

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

A Needed Get Away, Part 3

It was a beautiful day and the weather was terrific. After we explored the hotel the blue skies and green grass and trees drew us outdoors to explore the campus of Case Western Reserve University.

I wanted to explore the Cleveland Botanical Gardens, but unfortunately we did not have time to go- a reason to go back and visit.

We walked down and found a street filled with historic homes.However, the most intriguing building that caught my eye was...

the Peter B. Lewis Building. This was designed by architect Frank Gehry. Among some of his more famous structures--- the Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles, California and the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain I'm a novice when it comes to architecture. I don't know much about it, but I know what I like and what I don't like. I was absolutely struck by this buiding. It is surrounded by old structures and the Lewis Building complimented everything on the surrounding streets. I can assure you that I will do some reading and learn more about this architect.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

A Needed Get Away, Part 2

It's lunch time and I have polished my grandmother's silver tea set-- awful job... no wonder no one buys silver anymore...anyway... it was worth it... all shiny and sparkly again. But now it's time for a bowl of soup and to offer up Part 2 of our little road trip.

So... we left Parma and made our way to University Heights where we checked into our hotel at the Glidden House- a beautiful mansion built in 1910 by the Glidden (paint) family. It is located on the campus of Case Western University-- I'll chat about that later... Patricia wanted a suite, but unfortunately due to the last minute planning, the best we could do was adjoining rooms. The rooms were lovely... done in bold primary colors and an incredibly comfy king size bed and a 42 inch plasma screen television...

We left Patricia to take a nap and once I unpacked we left the room to explore the hotel and the neighborhood.

We went down and spoke to the concierage and asked him to make reservations for us at a Hungarian restaurant Michael and I had gone to a few years prior over in Shaker Heights. We asked if we could explore the hotel and in an incredibly deep and wonderful voice (Michael suggested to him that he should be doing voice overs for commercials and movie trailers) he told us we most certainly could.

Click on any of the photos to enlarge and get a great look at the detail...

The craftmanship in this place was astounding-- the stone detail and wood paneling and built ins throughout were stunning. In addition, there were several pieces of original arwork. I felt as though I had found a secret museum.

Later, the campus...

A Needed Get Away, Part 1

Well, we are back and Michael is at work. I slept in until 7:30 this morning and thought I would look at the photos I shot. We packed a lot in to our quick little jaunt. The weather was beautiful and as we drove north on I-71 it became quite apparent that they have received more rain than us. The humidity was low, the sky blue, the drive was pleasant.

Our first stop was in Parma, Ohio which is home to one of the largest American-Hungarian populations in the country and the location of the largest Hungarian Scout festival. We spent a couple of hours taking in the sights, sounds and smells. Had a few frosty beverages and shared some cabbage rolls and saugage. Once we walked through the gates, I felt as though we had tranported ourselves to Europe. Everyone around us was speaking Hungarian. Folks were polite enough to realize we did not speak the language and kindly spoke to us in English and answered our questions. I took some photos of some dolls and the woman said something to me and apparently I had an expression of stupidity on my face so she then asked me if I would like to guess the region that the clothing represented. I was happy that I could find Hungary on a map, but to guess regions based on dress? Good gosh... out of my league. In any event, these are hardy folks- physically and spiritually and emotionally. The language is fascinating and must be one of the most difficult to learn. But here we were in Parma, Ohio listening to young and old alike speaking fluently. Michael's father was born in Budapest and escaped from the Nazis and the Russians during World War II. Michael has the ability to pronounce words correctly, but does not understand the language. Like my mother not teaching me Japanese or Okinawan, his father did not teach him Hungarian. Michael would like to learn and I keep urging him to sign up for a class.

Now, a few photos. There were some wonderful faces that I fell in love with.

Michael tried this.... He was just shy of having 2 horseshoes per notch. His arm was a tad sore the next morning. The young scout really knew what he was doing to. He feigned ignorance about speaking English and smiled and said some things in Hungarian and slowly loaded the horseshoes onto the notched piece of wood. It was quite funny.
This was toward the entrance to where all the shopping was.... no idea... what it says... no idea how to pronounce it.
All right... I have to start getting the house ready for a baby shower... I'll post some more later... I have a lot more photos and experiences to share.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Coffee to Go

Sunny - Hi 114 Lo 86 for Baghdad, Iraq
Sunny - Hi 104 Lo 75 for Qandahar, Afghanistan
Sunny - Hi 91 Lo 64 for Northern KY, USA
Song of the week: September, Earth, Wind & Fire

This is such a happy song. It reminds me of Michael. He loves this song. I like this video simply because it is the vinyl going round and round and you can hear the crackling... love it... A lot of my favorite people, with a couple of exceptions were born in September. Time to get happy again.


I have time enough to put up a song and a quick note. I have never been so happy to see summer come to an end. This has been a summer of sadness and crying and saying goodbye. I'm done. Michael and I are heading out of town for a wee bit and taking my mom in law--- let's call it shopping therapy....

My next posts will be to remember two lives lost on 9/11, Tom Burnett and Deora Bodley. Sign up for Project 2996.

Happy Labor Day!

Have a great week everyone!