Subtropical Lady

Where Pelicans Fly
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2007-01-26 19:18:56 (UTC)

January 2007 (2)

1/21/2007 9:06 PM Sunday

I can now finally get caught up on the current stuff and cover our first week back home, but believe me when I say that most of it isn't good. We’re only just now getting our lives back in order. I’ve been too stressed, depressed, pissed or busy to write till now as I’ve been catching up on sweeps and documenting the trip.

The trip is almost completely covered now except for the few worst things to happen, along with after disembarkment which took forever. I’ll get that out of the way first.

Tom pissed me off with the sex again. We were lying in bed together talking and he seemed horny, believe it or not, telling me I owed him since he knew I wasn’t feeling well at the time. Then I got mad a few days later and pointed out that he was all talk and no action, reminding him that it wasn’t the lack of sex that bothered me, but the saying one thing and doing another. Then he too, got upset, insisting there’d been no opportunity. Well, this isn’t totally true, though almost. He could’ve gotten me between problems, but yes, I did have my share of them. Aside from tooth pain and tiredness, there was my period, followed by me waking up nauseous as hell one night because I had eaten so much the day before. I didn’t puke, but I was close and felt yucky for a while.

Lastly, I had my first cold in 10 years! It was a wimpy one seeing that I was never bedridden like I used to be when I’d get colds, but I was pretty out of it. I wasn’t even sure I had a cold at first. Allergies have cold-like symptoms so I thought that was it and blamed it on exhaustion as well. First I sneezed and had a sore throat, then I became congested and felt very rundown. Hope I go another decade without a cold! What was strange was that I predicted Tom would come down with a cold on the 17th, and although he did have a bare hint of a scratchy throat that day, it’s so weird to have me be the one to get sick while he never did. Climate changes do that to me, though I thought that with my powers so developed and being a non-smoker I’d be ok. I’m just now getting over it, feeling like my old self again at least physically. Mentally, I’m still not sure.

To finish with the tail end of the trip, we had to pack and put our luggage outside our doors by 2 AM the day we were to disembark. This was for immigration to go through upon reentering the US. I felt like I was being admitted to Brattleboro or Valleyhead all over again, having to give up my stuff to be searched and held for a while.

They gave everyone a color and a number, and since purple-3 was one of the last groups to disembark because we didn’t have a plane to catch immediately after docking, we had quite a wait at the Ft. Lauderdale dock. It wasn’t so bad, though, because I felt so run down and so I just laid in bed till it was time to leave. We left the ship around 11:00 and were given our luggage in the same room where we went to get our pictures taken and the key cards. All the windows were closed at the ticket booth, however, since they had a couple of hours before the next group of cruisers would be boarding.

While laying around we could see a huge crane taking apart the stage and equipment from up on the Lido deck.

So we cabbed to the motel Tom made reservations at from the ship’s internet center but were told our room wouldn’t be ready for an hour. Therefore we killed time at a grill and then shopping, one of my favorite things to do. I got a light pink T-shirt with silver and light blue shiny studs with the town’s name and some palm tree decorations, a black tank with silver sequins along the arm openings and in the form of the town’s name, a pink hair scrunchy with pink gems, a clear light pink lighter to light my patchouli with, a baby palm tree which I’m sure will die soon enough. They had cats and dogs curled up asleep in pet beds much like the cats and dogs Ashton-Drake has, though this place didn’t include nursing babies with them and was a little cheaper. They’re breathers too, but since we’ve been hit with the breakage curse again, the golden retriever puppy I chose doesn’t breathe. That’s no biggie, though, as I did get it for the cute display it makes.

Once landing in Portland, we took the light rail system whose sign said: Be Your Own Conductor.

It gives you tickets to transfer to the local buses which is pretty neat, though they expire within a couple of hours. So we caught a bus to the train station after light railing it to where the connecting bus was at.

Online it said that the train ride back would cost $35 for each of us rather than $50 each and that it’d be a shorter route. We were worried there wouldn’t be any money on our card for the tickets if it was more because the damn cruise people had our card tied up because they hadn’t taken their money yet. We had enough cash for a motel, had worse come to worse, but we both would’ve been pissed had there been any more delays. We just wanted to get home and get this long journey over with! Well, as it would turn out, no it wasn’t a shorter route and it would be a total of $100 just like the last time, but fortunately, we could access the money to buy the tickets.

The train turned out to be a total zoo. Just one big circus of noisy kids that just wouldn’t shut the fuck up, and to make matters worse, the iPod ran out of juice towards the beginning of the trip, so I would escape to the observation car. But being mostly dark out, I couldn’t see much even if all that was out there were snowy pines and firs, so I was both bored and tired. I was fairly awake during the plane ride and the first part of the train ride, but by nightfall, I was dragging and so was Tom.

So, although I never did get to go to the beach myself, thanks to allergies and exhaustion, we finally got off the train in Klamath Falls after 10 PM. Then came that final moment of suspense as to whether or not we’d find the front door sitting open or the rats dead, as we made the utterly freezing cold walk up here which took about 15 minutes. I was amazed and pleased to see that we at least didn’t have to trek to the house through the snow because there wasn’t any. This made it much easier for him to wheel the biggest suitcase along the way.

So just when we breathed sighs of relief to see that the rats were fine, no one broke in, and the heat was running, we discovered there was no water and that the temps had been down in the single digits the last few days. That is, along with the refrigerator that’s compressor was shot. Bad things usually happen in threes, but it seemed to have hit us in fives this time. See, they fixed the pipes which is good, especially since we didn’t have to go to a motel or lose any money other than what the few food items cost that had been in the fridge, but they brought us another broken fridge, and we got a pack of Mexicans now living next door. They haven’t been a problem since the little early-morning concert they gave me on the 17th, and have actually been away for the last few days, but I’m not stupid. I know that if they can be a problem on a cold, snowy day (we got hit with an inch or two of snow the day after we got back), then God help us when it’s warmer!

Is all this shit my punishment for taking that Kansas woman’s money? Tom wonders if it’s because we left the Lucky bamboo plants. I was all upset and freaking out the other day and said, “Where’s the magic in these bamboos lately, and what about the horseshoe outside?” That’s when he said I may’ve hit upon something; the fact that they don’t protect the house, they protect us. Maybe the shit that happened wouldn’t have happened if we hadn’t gone away, he pointed out, and also reminded me that I had no wins or packages upon returning home. But a day later, he won 4 scratch tickets in a row, I got a CD win notice and a $195 necklace via FedEx. The necklace is ugly with a few clear beads and mostly jade, and I’m not a jade fan, but you can tell it’s expensive. Maybe he has a point, maybe not. The Lucky Hawaiian Ti plant I got before we left may tell us. I got it from Publisher’s Clearing House. It’s these logs you place in water that are supposed to sprout leaves in 2-6 weeks and bring good luck.

To back up and be more detailed. I slept that 12 hours I needed to sleep, waking up only once just because when we first got back. I slept from 1 AM – 1 PM. When I got up I was still run down from the cold and found that Tom stayed home from work to work on the pipes, but I knew it’d be no quick fix and that we’d have to call someone out that day, and we did. Bill came out and put a super heavy-duty heater under the house, but it did no good, so that’s when he called the owner to authorize a plumber. I felt like a kid again having to hide the rats, but that was the least of our concerns. Had they caught them and told us to get rid of them or move, we’d have told them fine, we’ll move, though caged pets would more than likely not be a problem. Still, we didn’t want to take a chance when we had bigger problems at hand, like escaping motels even though we haven’t exactly been broke and could’ve afforded them, I’m happy to say.

So as it began to snow, the plumber fixed the pipes under the house which had burst, and we only had to go a day without showering, but who’d have ever thought we’d get hit with this kind of shit in a rental of all places?! It’s like God really loves to threaten our water supply. So much so that I’m saving the 10 gallons of water we had bought to use to flush the toilet.

The owner also came out and he seemed nice enough, though Bill seems the most easygoing of them all. He commented about us having a lot of stuff by the back door, but fortunately, he didn’t notice it was sealed up as it’s sealed with clear packing tape. Nor did he complain about the trash bag we’ve got taped on the ceiling to keep the warm air from escaping into the attic. As for the back door, though, Tom just pointed out that it was a small house, so we had to put stuff wherever we could, and he dropped it.

That night I was so exhausted that I crashed earlier and got up earlier on the 17th. Shortly after I’d gotten up, still weak from the cold, a Mexican guy was in the yard next door working on its car with the music thumping. I went out and asked that they please don’t play the music when on this side of the house. The guy said, “Ok, I’ll turn it down.” I thanked him and went back inside, but could still hear it in the house. So I went back out and this time I didn’t bother to play it nice. I learned a long time ago that nice doesn’t get you anywhere with certain freeloaders, so I nailed it right to the point one final time. From here on out, if they don’t run us out of here or drive me to kill them, we’ll call their rental company. This time, though, I won’t be going to jail for it! Anyway, I told him I could still hear the music in my house and that if they didn’t keep it for their ears only, I will call 1st Choice, then stormed back in the house, not hearing what he said in response, and not caring. I’m not going to argue or play games with these losers. This time we’ll just move or let those with leverage over them deal with them, though I’d still prefer to move when we say so, cuz that’s letting them win if we let them run us out. It’s just that I don’t think the rental company can shut them up. You know how defiant freeloaders are. They just don’t want to get along with anybody!

After the music, we switched to engine gunning and shouts amongst each other, before taking off 15 minutes later.

You know you’re cursed when you move to a place that has so few of the damn things compared to Arizona, yet you still get stuck with them! It’s fucking ridiculous. Just totally insane! These people are nothing but sick, wild, hateful, rude, obnoxious, vindictive, disrespectful, selfish, lazy assholes! Working on cars and freeloaders go hand in hand, so when they get back from wherever they’ve gone, I’m sure the yard, which has been one big old parking lot for them, will be turned into a fucking auto-mechanic kingdom. The only thing that’s been there over the weekend is this truck that usually carries a cement mixer, though now it’s detached. I was surprised to see people come and go quietly up by the front door, as well as the last vehicle I saw leave the yard last Friday which was another pickup with what looked like luggage in its bed. The kind we’d see at the airports. It’s this gray car that’s the main problem and has been the only thing so far that I know of with boom stereos. Until the weekend there’d usually be 5 vehicles there, 3 on the other side, 2 on this side. The question is how many people with vehicles with killer stereos live there, and how often will they have visitors come over with them? I’m amazed I haven’t seen any kids there yet. Nonetheless, I am not looking forward to their return! And just like old times, I’m keeping a little log for 1st Choice because I know they’ll be a problem. Perhaps not like the Phoenix freeloaders, but bad enough.

Bill came out to replace an inside pipe part that also broke under the sink the next day. That’s when I told him about the refrigerator. He said he’d let the owner know when he returned to re-clamp the pipes later that evening, and that this was certainly the biggest work order he’d ever had. He later said, along with the owner, that they hoped they wouldn’t have to be back at least till the summer but would bring another fridge the next day, only the fucking thing doesn’t work either! Not wanting them to get frustrated enough to try to charge us, even though we’d simply move rather than pay up, we said fuck it, we’re not calling them back out. We’ll just buy non-perishables. If we want TV dinners or things like that, we’ll eat them right after we buy them and get them home. It’s so cold, though, that we can put things like his shakes on the floor by the outer wall in the kitchen and it keeps them nice and cool.

Meanwhile, the laundry had built up because he didn’t have time to do it since we had to deal with shit breaking. That didn’t get done till today. He did a load yesterday and a load today.

I was surprised to find that I weighed 136 pounds, about the same as I weighed when we left. I guess I just didn’t take into consideration the fact that the food wouldn’t always be right in the next room like it is here, all the walking we’d be doing, and all the traveling time in which we’d have only little snacks. Delta gave us one snack on the short flights and two on the longer ones, along with soda and coffee. They even had alcoholic drinks, too. I suppose I should try to get some of this weight off.

Between the combination of being sick, tired, tired of being almost too fat to rock out, and losing the will to live, I’ve been on a partial starvation diet and crashed off 7 pounds as of two days ago. But then I gained two pounds back, one of which I knocked back off today, so I’m currently 130. Don’t know how much more I’ll lose or if I’ll try to maintain whatever I do lose. Tom’s going on a diet, too. To try to make it more motivating, we’ve agreed to reward ourselves with $5 for each pound lost, assuming we keep them off for a while. I’m mainly doing it for comfort reasons as I don’t mind looking like shit, and shit I do look like! God, I was both amazed and disgusted by my pictures and reflection in the stateroom’s large mirror over the bed! I look both fat and old. Guess it’s my compensation for having youthful, better-than-average looks like I used to for so long. Yet it keeps guys from hitting on me, so I like it.

Tom also had to go to the PO to get our mail since they were too lazy to bring it to us. They gave him a bucket to carry it back with, then he left it out front for the mailman to pick up the next day. I caught him as he was picking up the bucket and dropping our mail off and he asked how our vacation was.

Anyway, I’ve felt so many overwhelming emotions since coming home. I’ve been depressed, feeling hopeless and helpless, stressed out, and outraged at God. I’m sick of Him holding us back and allowing the same old fucking shit to happen to us. I never asked for a perfect life, and while the last year may’ve been good for the most part, we don’t need busted pipes, shot refrigerators, or wild freeloaders living with us! It’s like we just can’t get ahead and I was wondering if I should starve myself to death, figuring it’d be an easier death that was sure to succeed in the end, or if we should get another place here in town, or risk moving to California with just Unemployment and hope for the best. But I know that running to California won’t change our fate. Yes, it’ll be warmer and we’ll be in a newer, nicer, level place which I’d like, but we’d still be dealing with problem neighbors, barking dogs and car stereos zipping up and down the street, so this is why I sometimes wonder - what’s the point in living? I also still fear we’ll go back to being broke most of the time, too. It’s funny how we’re the opposite of how we used to be. In Maricopa, we had a nice house with decent furniture, but no money. Here we have money, but we live like bums in a dump. It’s certainly more comfortable this way, but I still don’t think living in a quiet, modest home with at least a little extra money is asking for much. Yet I believe it won’t happen. No, I know it won’t happen. And I don’t want to live like this in the mainstream for another 40 or so years, battling a string of crises every few months!

A part of me also wants to die so God can no longer have fun picking on me in any way, but of course, I don’t know if He’d make sure my afterlife was much worse if there is one.

Tom urged me not to kill myself because he really, seriously doesn’t want to live without me and can’t know for sure that we’ll be together in any form of afterlife. I said, “Why not? We’re not attracted sexually to each other, even though only one of us can admit it.” He said, “Well, if you’re right, you’re still a damn good friend to lose.” That was sweet of him and I’m flattered to have someone love me and accept me as I am. No one else ever has. Yet sometimes one has to think of themselves and themselves only. I don’t know what I’m going to do yet, though I did tell him that I think we should still consider going together by hanging ourselves. But he’s afraid that wouldn’t work and that we’d suffocate rather than die instantly. I suggested that maybe my dying first would give him the incentive to die too, but then he said that may actually give him the incentive to live to suffer the consequences and live with the guilt for not being able to give me the life that I wanted. As I stressed to him, though, it isn’t that he isn’t giving me the life I want, it’s that God isn’t allowing us to live the life we want. Everything always comes down to that bastard I still can’t understand for the life of me how so many people can worship. Right now, though, I’m not sure what I’m going to do. Neither of us is. We’re just going to give EFO another chance to prove it’s not really TUT. Especially since he made a $170 profit in two days! I’d give anything for it to work out! Moving on just Unemployment would really be asking to lose everything. If I have to sell my dolls and knickknacks, I could, though I wouldn’t want to. Still, as long as I had music, books, my PC and incense, I could do it if I had no choice. He still feels certain EFO will get better and better, and is ready to pay to download the information on various horses so he doesn’t have to manually input it in, but if so, just how many months will it take? He still feels I’ll win big sooner or later, too.

Tom wants to get out of here either way soon enough because he hates his job.

It’s been great being back with the rats. Lez is still shy, but getting a little better.

The dog goes off in the evenings, as usual, but I haven’t heard much from Kim. I’ve just heard her come and go a few times, sometimes with the music playing, though still at a reasonable volume. 10:10 is when she leaves for work and she seems to have weekends off. I like her working at night cuz when she’s home at night she tends to come and go more often. She must be working far away as she usually doesn’t get back till after 8:00. That’s 10 hours.

A few days after returning, that $150, kick-ass toothbrush arrived via UPS. Yup, it’s way faster than regular electric brushes. It’s supposed to clean your teeth like no other brush and be as good as flossing. So far it has made my teeth whiter and they feel smoother, too.

Another thing we did to brighten my dark and dismal mood was to make that big incense order I’ve had my heart set on. I can’t wait! We placed the order 5 days ago, so I should have another week before it arrives. It’s a good thing I still have incense leftover from the order I made last summer. This is the biggest selection I’ve ever ordered. I’m getting 201 10-packs, 15 of them old favorites. The entire order and shipping were $115.

That Fuji stamp site that makes personalized photo stamps that said they’re waiting on government approval, is obviously not going to come through by the end of the month to allow me the book of stamps I won, plus the additional one they gave me for making me wait. Why the hell did they run the damn sweep before they got the approval anyway? That’s rather backward.

I went out today for the first time since being back, hoping to see Liz. Instead, we saw Olivia. She asked how we were doing and I told her about the cruise. She asked questions about it and said she wished she could’ve gone with us. Now why couldn’t Liz have said that? And why is the best-looking chick always the least friendly?

I saw a movie about this chick that was into witchcraft, and knowing that spells really can work and that things like bamboo and horseshoes aren’t mere silly superstition, I did some research on spells, lucid dreams, and astral projection. I know I’ve had lucid dreams before and that “falling into the body” experience upon waking up, but where I go when I leave my body if that’s really what the case is, I don’t know.

This one site sells talisman rings for $300! They must be really good or real quacks. Most of the spells I found are a bit complicated and involve items I can’t easily obtain. Yet I found a simple sleep and attraction spell that only requires a white candle, two pink candles, and a mirror other than a compact. I’d still like to see if I can make Liz like me or at least be more friendly toward me. My logic is that if I can get her to do this using this spell, then I should be able to use it to “soften” anyone with bad intentions for us. The sleep spell will be for when the stress or whoever we have for current neighbors are at their worst or both.

The sleep spell involves walking counter-clockwise around your bedroom with a white candle, chanting the word sleep, and the love spell involves sitting between two pink candles while looking in a mirror and reciting your most positive traits.

Next I’m going to search for money-making spells, but what I also need that I can’t seem to find are spells to stop the never-ending slew of bad neighbors we get. Kim, and the last people in the house, were the only two good neighbors we’ve had in the last 15 years.

1/22/2007 12:20 AM Monday

The Mexicans just let me know they’re back. I heard the steady beat of the bass and got up to look out the window. I saw headlights glowing from the other side of the house towards the back, then lights go on inside the house. The music played for 3 minutes. It was semi-soft and wouldn’t have woken me up, but was still distracting and annoying. Had the thing been playing on this side of the house, though, it would’ve been totally obnoxious. One of us has to go. I can’t go through this shit all over again. If we’re here when it’s warm and First Choice can’t shut them up, they’re gonna be utterly maddening to live with! I don’t trust my temper after going through what I went through in Phoenix. I’m afraid I’ll hurt or even kill them if we either don’t move or First Choice can’t shut them up. They’re Mexicans, goddamnit! No matter how nicely you ask them to do something, they just thumb their noses at you in defiance. They go out of their way to do just the opposite without a care in the world for anyone else around them. Even if they knew a complaint would get them evicted – fine, they don’t care. They can just as easily move and do the same shit somewhere else.

12:37 AM

Now the house is dark. Guess they’ve gone to bed so they can be out at 9:00 in the morning fixing cars and blasting music.

Maybe I should move my office into the bedroom. I’d rather that than be run out before we’re ready to leave.

1/23/2007 5:54 PM Tuesday

We moved my office into the bedroom and set up the wireless connection. I’m amazed at how reliable it’s been so far.

Nothing from next door since the night they returned from being out of town, but I’ll at least be a little further away when they do start up again. We went to Safeway again (no Liz again either) and there were 2 cars when we went to the store, and 3 when we came back, all with California plates. That’s it, God, move all the Mexicans up from California to here so we won’t have to deal with their shit when we get down there!

Since the floors are tilted all throughout the house in various ways, this time instead of being tipped forward in my desk chair, I’m slightly tipped backward. I’m kind of cramped in here too, but I like it here better. All I have to do is hope God won’t coax Kim to move to Eugene earlier and replace her with some new nightmare. Speaking of Kim, I may have to ask her to move her trash from the gate or let me take bags to the dumpster for her because Pacific Power’s being a pain about reading the meter. We thought they came into our gate in front and were complaining about the fallen rose trellis in the letter they sent before the cruise, but when they sent another one, we theorized that they have a new meter reader that’s trying to go through her gate and can’t cuz of all the shit she’s got in the way. Tom’s going to call them first and see what they say, but we shouldn’t be held responsible just because she’s too lazy to take her trash to the dumpster.

Anyway, I’m a little cold being in this corner by exterior walls, but I’m using one of the spare continuous-run heaters that have more power and that helps. Meanwhile, I use my wimpy one with the thermostat for sleeping or for whenever it feels like warming up. We’ve been back up in the 40s, so that’s good. And being in here gets me further away from the damn dogs, too. We blew a fuse earlier by running both our heaters at once on the same side of the house. God better compensate us for having to live like this!

We might one day be able to compensate ourselves, though it could take many years if EFO doesn’t work out or he has trouble getting at least an adequate-paying job in California. I’m not going to get my hopes up but Tom found this company that finances 5% of land and building materials so you don’t have to get a loan or make a huge down payment. We want to do most of the work on our own anyway. We want to do everything we can do ourselves that won’t require inspection.

I could now get dental and vision coverage through his job, but it wouldn’t save us as much as real insurance would. I’ve decided I can still see ok enough with these glasses and that I’ll suffer a little longer with the teeth so we can get out of here faster.

I’ve also decided to get down to 118 pounds and hold it for a week so I can get this decorative pot from Ashton-Drake. Remember, we’re giving ourselves $5 for every pound lost, and so the $90 I’ll need is motivating me to keep going when I wasn’t sure if I wanted to or not. I’m back to 129, so I’ve got a ways to go. To speed things up I’d like to cut my calories even lower than the 500-700 I’ve been averaging, but I don’t know if I can. What I’m doing now can be hard enough as it is, though it got a little easier after the first week.

9:03 PM

I went online to see if I could find any spells to help keep me motivated on my diet, and it turns out we’re sort of doing what they recommend already! They have a weight-loss spell by selling pounds. All you have to do is get two people together and have the one who wants to buy the pounds pay the person selling them. Then they shake hands and the deal is done. It usually takes a week or so, and ten pounds is about all you can transfer at a time.

I also found a hex removal spell, though Tom feels the spell we did at the duplex was sufficient enough, even though one can never remove all bad things from their life.

The spell I definitely want to try is one of the lottery/gambling spells I found that needs to be done outdoors when the moon is full. There are indoor ones too, but we need to get some candles first in the appropriate colors. Tom said that’d be no problem.

There’s also a spell to prevent diseases (although if I came down with some deadly disease I wouldn’t have to kill myself when the going got rough!), and one for pain. He’s been having shoulder pain lately, but there’s one ingredient I don’t have for the best spell I found and that’s a dark blue ribbon. I emailed the lady and told her what colors I do have. If she says none of them will do, we’ll get a dark blue one. I guess some spells you can improvise, some you can’t.

I could never want sex bad enough to do one of the ones I read to increase the libido. You have to wear a red dress when your period starts and you can’t wear underwear, pads or tampons. Then you have to play with yourself or have your partner do it while you tell yourselves you want to always feel that way, and this has to go on for 4 hours!

Two more bum wins, but at least they’re coming. A bottle of dull nail polish and a kids’ bible CD set so they can learn to hate others who are different than them while they’re young. If we don’t have to sell stuff like that before we move, they’re really going to wonder what the hell we were doing with that when they come to clean things out in this place! Even funnier is when the next people in here call to tell them the refrigerator’s not working!

1/25/2007 7:10 PM Thursday

I sent a review of the cruise to both R at the cruise company Cruises and N at the Blues Festival magazine, and boy did I get quite a reply from N! There are some very sensitive people in this world! She said she wanted to take a few days to come up with just the right words to say to me (and she’s supposed to be a writer?) and while she said she’s sorry I had a terrible time, she then went on to brag all about Delbert and his friends and how she would have gotten my cabin space if I hadn’t entered “just to win something.”

In my reply, I told her I didn’t say I had a “terrible” time, just not a great one. I also pointed out that I couldn’t have possibly known how the entertainment was going to be till I heard it and that I never said the performers were bad, they just weren’t all that good. This doesn’t mean I don’t realize the fact that most people admire them, I told her, and pointed out that it’s just a matter of personal preference. Where some people dislike the color pink, some find it lovely. Some don’t like blueberries, some do. And no, I didn’t want to “just win something.” Had I been psychic enough to have known I wouldn’t find it as fun as I’d hoped, I’d have gladly given her my cabin space and taken the money instead, I told her when she insisted I hadn’t read the rules and how they’d have paid me $500 instead. I did read them, I told her, but because I sincerely believed the food, entertainment and service would be much better than it was, I had no reason to pass it up. I also always wanted to go on a cruise and knew this may be my only chance.

Then she goes on to say that if we want something bad enough, we usually get it. Really? Well, I didn’t tell her this because I don’t need to defend myself to her, but how come I didn’t get the baby I once wanted if we get something as long as we want it bad enough? How come I never made it as the singer I once wanted to be? How come I never had true lust? Why did Tom and I spend so much time being broke no matter how hard we worked? And why am I still living in a dump in the city with the freeloaders and other losers while that peaceful, secluded, new house remains forever out of reach?

She goes on and on crying how this may have “cost us our contract with the cruise company and radio station.” She also said, “I wish it had been legal to cull through contest entries and remove people like yourself from winning; leaving in the contest database only those thousands of people who would gladly have been in your shoes. And the sad part is how many people who would have liked to win, but didn't even bother to enter because they didn't think they stood a chance (yeah, that’s how it always goes cuz life’s not fair. It’s those who want/deserve a particular thing that doesn’t get it while those who don’t are the ones who do get it, but what can we do about it?). Their chances would have been better if our database wasn't littered with ‘professional contest enterers’. Hope you learned a lesson from this experience. We certainly did. And if we don't get to give away a cruise ever again, well... blues fans will be paying the price for your mistake for years to come..... thanks.”

As for having no story to print, I struck back with the fact that she does have a story to print, this email and my last one. It’s just that she chooses not to print it because she didn’t like what I had to say. And as for blues fans to pay for my “mistake” for years to come – get real! Nobody ever pays for anything I do. It’s always me that pays for what they do!

Lastly, I told her please don’t waste her time replying again because as soon as I see it’s from her or about the cruise, the delete button gets hit. There’s no point in going back and forth with each other as we’ve both said our pieces. So as long as she doesn’t make trouble for me and cause me to react, she won’t hear anything further from me.

The only thing she said that worried me was that we’d get a form to pay yet more taxes on the damn thing in ‘08.

Tom said that when he last saw Liz, he could be wrong, but yeah, he thinks she is pregnant. She can kiss that hot body goodbye if she is. It’s kind of sad. I mean, even if she’s mature for her age and has a man who will stand by her and do his part and has money, she’s awfully young and it seems like such a shame to throw your life away like that. It’d be ending your life at any age, but still, it just seems like such a waste of youth. I guess we all have our priorities in life, though.

He said she keyed in the two 5-gallon water jugs manually, then asked him to lift them off the belt for her, though those suckers are heavy. The only thing I don’t get is why she’d be working on her feet all day if she were pregnant. Either way, it may explain why she’s fuller in the face and neck. She can’t be more than 5-6 months along if she is, and if so, I definitely won’t be sending any letter from California. What would be the point? On the off-chance that she may care to respond, she wouldn’t have time to if she’s bogged down with a kid.

We’re going to be in the 40s all week, but Springfield sure isn’t! They’re looking at single-digit lows and highs in the teens! But both Maricopa and Sacramento are to be in the 60s.

With the exception of when I’m trying to save money and maintain my weight, I’m stopping the diet for the most part. I just can’t get my calories any lower which is what I’d need to do to lose any more weight, and so without a properly working metabolism, It’d take forever the way I’ve been going. I’d just put it right back on anyway. In just one day of having 1500 cals, I’m already up two pounds.

Although the wireless connection did ok the first night, it did start cutting out on me and I got sick of having to fight to get back online when it would time out on me, so since he had to string wires across the bathroom anyway so my computers could talk, we put me back on the wired network.

This bitch of a rat, Lez, is so gone after Tom wastes his time trying to get her to be more sociable over the weekend. I tell you, they don’t change. Once timid, always timid. Once vicious, always vicious. Once friendly, always friendly. It’d be like Tinkerbell all of a sudden being afraid of people – yeah, right! I don’t want any antisocial pets, so she’s outa here soon.

I had a very disturbing dream last night that I hope to hell doesn’t mean anything. I had a horrible dream before we left too, where I was taking a shower in some warehouse of some kind. The shower, for some reason, was way up high at maybe 15’ or so. Tom had to climb up to help me down when I was done showering, and as he did, we both began to fall, but I awoke before we hit the ground.

Well, if I interpreted it correctly, this dream symbolized the trouble to come with the rough trip, the pipes breaking, etc.

In last night’s dream, I was visiting Tom in jail and asked him if he thought he’d be there for years. When he said “yes,” I felt sickened at the idea of not being able to hug each other or do things together. Then I realized I couldn’t keep this place going or store our stuff anywhere, so I said, “You know I can’t survive on my own, so I have to do it,”

He nodded sadly, knowing what “do it” meant.

When Tom got home he assured me all was fine. Hopefully, no vindictive blacks will cry racism at work and set him up either!

I did hear back from one of the spell site people. They said that since the free spells were gathered from wherever, they couldn’t tell me if improvising would be ok or not. They said I could send them my details with any questions I may have and she’ll check my stars for me, so I sent my DOB, race, and where I’ve lived to her. I then explained how we lost the Arizona house and seem to be trapped in the city with nothing but noisy neighbors with the exception of just a couple, and that we’ve spent most of our marriage struggling. Then I went on to explain a little about EFO and the plans to buy or build a house in a quiet area, asking if this would ever come to pass. I wanted to know if she thought we’d still struggle, for the most part, have a little extra money, or get rich. I told her not to worry about telling me anything I didn’t want to hear either.

1/26/2007 6:55 PM Friday

Figures. They want $50 to do a money spell on me. No thanks. I’d rather try to learn to perform my own spells. We couldn’t know that these people were for real anyway. There are quacks in every field. Tomorrow Tom’s going to pick up the appropriate candles and then I’ll attempt the lottery/gambling spell while he writes the program that’ll read the racing info he’s to download.

He saw Liz and got a good look at her. Says she’s 7-8 months pregnant. 7-8 months?! Where did this come from so fast? Are there two Liz's like there were two Tinas?

I had to reconsider the fact that Liz may not be a good candidate to test my friendship spell on if she’s preoccupied with having an animal, but I can’t think of anyone else better. Therefore, I’ve decided to try the spell on her. If it fails I’ll try it on Estella. If that fails too, then I’ll try a different spell on either a problem neighbor, a mean boss he may get, or someone good-looking down in Sacramento. Whichever comes first.

I’m back up to 132 pounds. By accident they discovered the area of the brain where smoking addiction is and hope to shut down that part to help people quit, so when are they going to come up with a way to fix broken metabolisms? Unlike most people, I can’t lose weight by simply “cutting back” or “watching what I eat.” I have to practically starve. And then it comes right back as soon as I eat. In another decade I won’t be able to get under 140 pounds, no doubt! It just gets worse and worse every few years. But I like to save money and rock easier, so after pigging out today, I’m going to go back to starving tomorrow. I’ve looked for willpower spells to no avail, so I’ll just have to tough it out on my own.

I emailed a local taxidermist and told them I have a pet rat who isn’t very nice; how much would it cost to stuff her? If the price is right, maybe I’ll let her get big, put off the Nikita doll I was to order on the 2nd and have her stuffed. If not, I’ll just kill the bitch and get a squirrel in California.

I’m pleased to learn that affixing labels to the incense bags at Silk Splash is now standard routine, thanks to my recommendation, as Elliot put it. They sure are more convenient than those stapled cards they started off with. Tomorrow my incense should be here. Can’t wait!

9:50 PM

The taxidermist doesn’t do pets, they just told me, so the execution’s still on for Monday. Tom said he wants the weekend to try to play with her because he needs a break from working on this or that, but why play with an animal that simply isn’t friendly? He just doesn’t want me to get rid of her, but that’s just too bad. He’s got no choice because if there’s anything I can’t stand it’s having a pet that won’t let me handle them.

1/29/2007 8:21 PM Monday

He went to get me an inhaler which I like to keep on hand just in case, and it turns out they’ve stopped selling them because people abuse those too, so he ordered me one online. I’m sick of having to be put out because other people just have to abuse things! Anybody can abuse anything so why don’t they just stop selling everything in the world if they’re that worried? I say if someone wants to abuse something – let them. It’s their lives/bodies. But no, we just have to live in a controlling world where everything’s always gotta be one way or the other!

Lez is gone. I hated to have her final moments be so drawn out and painful, but it’s not easy to kill a rat who’s not only terrified of people, but that knows you’re trying to kill it. I had to chase her around the cage and knock her out with a stick since I couldn’t take hold of her and simply throw her outdoors.

My incense arrived Friday with 68 of the 201 scents I ordered. Kepa said that due to the order being so large, they’re sending multiple packages. They didn’t want to wait till the order was complete to send it. I don’t know when the next one is to arrive or how many more packages they’re going to break it up into, but I’m enjoying what I have so far.

I completed day 8 of the 9-day money spell, and Tom hopes to resume racing on Wednesday. For now, he’s fine-tuning the program he’s writing. I hope this helps because the spell we did for his shoulder pain hasn’t helped. I don’t know if it’s because it’s the wrong spell or the wrong colored ribbon or what, but the more he uses it, the more pain he’s in. He says he’s pretty sure it’s a ligament problem. I’m wondering if he’ll need to see a doctor after we’ve moved and maybe even need surgery. Either way, I’m not going to bother doing the Liz spell if the money spell turns out to be a bust, but this one certainly seems more promising. Especially since I’m doing precisely what the spell calls for.

1/31/2007 11:17 PM Wednesday

Yesterday I got 38 more 10-packs, so now they owe me 95 more. Kepa said the rest of my order would arrive Friday or Saturday.

I sent a couple of emails to the lady that said she’d have a Nikita doll to sell me in February but haven’t gotten a reply. So, either something’s come up to prevent her from getting her messages, or she sold the ones she said she’d have available. If I don’t hear from her by the 2nd, the day we plan to order her, I’ll order this beautiful Indian doll from Ashton-Drake I’ve had my eyes on for some time now. She’ll be my last Oregon goodie, then it’s save, save, save.

There weren’t any good races to bet on today, but starting tomorrow, Tom hopes to make at least a few hundred a week as we’ve agreed that going down with 5 grand should be sufficient enough, and this doesn’t count what we save from his job. I just hope we’re not being teased with the races! I also hope that when we do go, God, or something else up there, will care enough about us this time around to look out for us. At least we’ll have the bamboos to help. We’ve also agreed that even if the horses do work out and start spitting out lots of money, we don’t need to have all the money we’d need to buy or build a house available the day we move down there as we’d need time to figure out the best place to do this in.

We both can’t wait to get the fuck out of here! We’re both sick to death of this house, he hates his job, and I’m sick to death of the fucking cold! Not much snow this year, but it still gets pretty damn cold. The good news is that it’s to start warming up soon. This weekend should be in the mid-50s.

Tom saw the Mexicans playing fix-it on a couple of pickups in the yard earlier, but there was no music. He said he saw them when he went to get the mail, but couldn’t hear anything in his room.

I came back from the cruise at 136 pounds, then dropped to 129. Then I ate my way back up to 132, then yesterday I resumed the hard-core dieting where I’m nearly starving. I’m already back down to 130 and I hope to get to 125 within a few days. I thought I’d try dieting in intervals. So if I can get to 125, I’ll then eat my way back up to 128, then try to drop to 121. I don’t know if it will work, but we’ll see.