Friday, June 24, 2011

THE XOOM, I'M IN LOVE

Technology has gobsmacked me, once again. Portable and lightweight... I now own a device that does the most complicated things at the mere touch of a finger. But what absolutely delights me is one of it’s basic capabilities. It’s backlit. Which means... at night with the lights out… totally in the dark, in the palm of my hands… wherever I choose, I can now get online... or simply read whatever book I pick... from my extensive Kindle library. Only I’m not using a computer or a Kindle. I’m using a tablet called the XOOM. This 3G/WiFi Motorola device features the Droid operating system, like my smart-phone, only it‘s bigger. Bigger is better people. Especially at my age. Makes reading much easier. It’s about the size of a hardback book or a netbook computer.  With this tablet I can get online anywhere. However, the surface is very reflective... almost too much to use it outdoors. But who cares. Unlike most people... it’s the reading part, at night or in low light, that has me enamored. The XOOM comes loaded with Google Books. But I downloaded the Kindle App because I have an account with Amazon. It shows the book jackets in color, so I can discern one from another, easily. That’s something Kindle doesn’t do. In a very short time... this device has changed my life. I like reading in bed. Since I was a small child, I’ve read in the dark using a flashlight. Back when I was a kid... I did it so I wouldn't disturb my grandma. We shared a room. These days I do it, so I don’t wake my husband. Now I can read my books... or surf the net, to my hearts content... and not bother anybody with a bright light. I LOVE this XOOM. It’s mesmerizing. We were looking to update and replace our laptop computer... and got this tablet instead. I'm so glad. The laptop is passe. Tablets are the future. iPad look out, there’s competition on your heels. On the other hand... this could just be the latest fad. I guess time will tell.

Friday, June 17, 2011

RESTAURANT BECAME A PARKING LOT

If you asked what my favorite soup is, I would have to say LEMON CHICKEN. But if you're hungry for it...the nearest place to get it, without donning a chef's hat or opening a can, is now approximately an hour away from my house. FURGETABOUT IT! Once you’ve had the best it can’t be duplicated. The only place that served the best here in town had a fire. Ain't nothing being fixed in that kitchen from this day forward. And that's a crying shame. Years ago, when we moved here... the building that housed that restaurant, used to be an ice cream parlor. My favorite ice cream is BLACK RASPBERRY and they were the only place in town that carried it. Needless to say, I had a particular fondness for this location. So when the ice cream parlor closed down, unable to stay afloat... I diverted my loyalty to the new Greek restaurant, that took it's place and their Lemon Chicken Soup. But thoughts of summer nights... and eating ice cream treats in waffle cones, with our little girls, remained each time we went inside. Time marched on and everything changed. DREAMS DASHED. LIVELIHOODS LOST. As the bulldozers descended outside the remnants of our favorite old eaterymy spouse and I sat in a parked car, watching the demolition of the burnt out structure, eating a couple of soft serve vanilla cones from McDonalds. We pretended the past, hadn't caught up to the present… as this place we loved, and all the memories we shared there... became nothing more than a GIANT parking lot.

Friday, June 10, 2011

CHARTREUSE SNEAKERS

They jumped off the display shelf, into my field of vision, two seconds after I made my grand entrance into the store. Placed there by design to draw attention, they captured mine. I whispered, "How about a future in my closet?" Against the backdrop of ordinary colors, these particular shoes stirred a passion deep within. The old standards… white, taupe, navy, black, and saddle brown, just couldn't hold a candle. My heart was racing, my palms were sweaty and I knew looking at the pair on display wasn't enough. It was time to get serious. The question was, did they have them in my size? Goosebumps began forming on my upper arms. Grabbing the shoes off the display, I started the search. I found a salesclerk to help me with this investigation. "Follow me," she said. And off we went through rows and rows of shoes stacked six foot high. Further and further we got from the front of the store, twisting and winding ourselves through the maze of boxes. "Here! Here they are," she smiled. "Shall I let you rummage through the sizes on the boxes or would you like me to do it?" Convinced she wouldn't find my size, I consented to allow her a cursory look before diving in myself. But amazingly she pulled a 6w from the pile almost immediately. "Here they are. Chairs are over against the wall if you want to try them on. I'll be up front if you need me." My hands trembled as we made the exchange. She got her display model back and I got the prize. I hesitated just a moment before opening the box. I hoped I wouldn't be disappointed.  I carefully unwrapped the tissue paper. There they were, lying side by side. I sat there gazing at them affectionately. A big grin spread across my face. "I like you. I really like you." Without fanfare or further ado… first one, then the other slid on my feet. They fit perfectly. And felt so-ooo comfortable. Enamoured by my find, I carefully packed them back in the box. This new addition to my closet would be there every morning saying hello, to get the drab out of each day. Chartreuse colored sneakers.  Imagine that. They made my day.

Friday, June 3, 2011

A DINNER VICTORY

Now that the sun is shining well into the night sky, my hubby and I got a little cabin fever. We had been eating at home everyday for weeks. We decided to splurge a little and go out to Ruby Tuesday’s for dinner out. As online members of their website, they sent us a special coupon for 25% off whatever we ordered. It expired at the end of the month. Perfect timing. May 31st was upon us. So we got in the van and headed up to the restaurant to use it. The place was bustling with people. They seated us at a table near a window with a view of the parking lot. We hunkered down and began scanning the menu. Lots of yummy things to choose from. I usually get the Asian Grilled Salmon. But since we had lobster at home, for my birthday... we decided to just do burgers. My hubby ordered the Triple Prime Burger with cheddar cheese and I got the Boston Blue, medium rare. We opted out of the salad bar and ordered sides of mashed potatoes and grilled zucchini. They served biscuits while we were waiting for the meal . We devoured them. We had not eaten all day. When dinner finally arrived, we cleaned our plates. Everything was delicious. The waitress asked if we wanted dessert and we told her NO, we had leftover birthday cake at home. So she left the bill. My hubby put the coupon with his credit card in the folder and handed it to her. After a while, she returned with the paperwork to sign. She then told us she FORGOT to deduct the coupon. She said she rang the transaction up before she saw it, so we would have to use the coupon at a later date. We told her we couldn’t do that because it expired that night. She said there was nothing she could do. My husband suggested we talk to the manager. That got her rear in gear. But she was really aggravated with us. Why couldn’t we just pay for it, as is, without the discount. She felt slighted. This was really inconveniencing her. My husband and I looked at each other. She’s the one who messed up to begin with, by running the credit card without including the discount. I daresay Ruby Tuesday’s intended for us to use the coupon when they sent it to us. And that’s all we were trying to do. Eventually, the waitress returned... still in a bit of a huff. But... she brought us the corrected bill, minus the 25% off. My husband signed it... and off we headed for home, smiling at the small victory... and, an interesting evening out.