Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Some Notes on a Friend and Family -OR- Blog Entry Ebb and Flow

The Atlantic Ocean as seen from a rocky promontory at Rockport, Mass., on April 21, 2013.

This picture was taken by N. while hiking there with his mom on Sunday. He is doing better, and he should be returning to D.C. shortly.

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Well, I was going to write a political-themed vituperative entry while posting the pictures I took on Saturday afternoon. Indeed, I was sorta dreading writing the entry since I was in such an irritable to outright foul mood, exacerbated by things going on the news that have really greatly irked me.

A room with a partial view: The view outside one of my 5th floor little apartment windows looking onto New Hampshire Avenue and spring greenery, Washington, D.C., 1:38PM April 20, 2013.

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I say "dreading" since I figured such an entry would take hours to post, resulting in a 3AM bedtime, even as I fretted about the content of the entry since I really do have to be mindful of what I write.

The view (familiar to my regular blog readers) from my apartment looking southwest at the intersection of New Hampshire Avenue and 16th and U Streets NW, Washington, D.C., 3:05PM April 20, 2013.

In the distance (not really visible in this blurry image) are the towers of Rosslyn in Arlington, including a new one at 1812 North Moore Street that apparently will (and certainly look to) be the tallest in the D.C. area at 35 stories and 390 feet high (set atop a hilly rise).

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However, owing to a variety of factors, I've instead decided to nix entirely the political themed entry, and indeed, and to post just some personal items, as well as some of the aforementioned pictures I took on Saturday. In terms of additional entries this week, unless I can post an entry on Tuesday night (i.e., Wednesday morning before I go to bed), then I may not have a chance to post another one until Thursday or even Friday. But given my low readership, that's not a big deal.

Sunlight shines through the tender leafy green boughs of an oak tree in the 1900 block of New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, D.C., 3:14PM April 20, 2013.

The house at 1940 NH Ave. was having some massive outdoor gay BBQ with all the kool kidz of the D.C. gayborhood in attendance including, I understand, the main members of the JR's / Cobalt gay mafia such as Oooza the Unloved Crow Creature, M. Wade Tipamillyun, and the Turkey Vulture (although not at the time I walked by). However, I bumped into Jon C. as he was walking there, and during a brief, pleasant chat, he made a highly inappropriate yet quite funny comment / suggestion in jest that I will not repeat here.

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So instead, let me  note several items ...

Tomorrow Quill is having significant (borderline major) surgery. I spoke to her tonight on the phone. She will be staying with her parents in Silver Spring as she recovers. I need to visit her.

The double-flowering Kwanzan cherry tree (just past floral peak) at the intersection of New Hampshire Avenue and S Street NW, Washington, D.C., 3:18PM April 20, 2013.

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My step dad Ray has been diagnosed as having pulmonary fibrosis. He also has some serious heart issues, so all in all, he's not in good health, although he is still working. Ray is about to start collecting Social Security. I thought the lung issue might be due to what he was exposed to in Vietnam back as a young man in 1966 or '67, but apparently pulmonary fibrosis is not considered by the VA as being linked to Agent Orange exposure.

As for my mom, she's fine. I had a nice conversation with her today.

Dupont Circle, Washington, D.C., on a sunny spring Saturday afternoon, 3:25PM April 20, 2013.

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My dad, too, is fine, although still recuperating from knee replacement surgery. (Of note, he is 72, and he started collecting Social Security years ago and he gets a pension from the State of New Jersey, so all in all, he's fine financially living down there in the trashier parts of Florida.)

Yours truly at a beautiful double-flowering Kwanzan cherry tree growing beside the Grosvenor Metro in Grosvenor Park, Rockville*, Md., 4:07PM April 20, 2013.

I rode the Metrorail Red Line from Dupont Circle to Grosvenor - Strathmore station to meet LP at Grosvenor Park where he lives. Located about 12 miles to the NW of downtown D.C., and in a cooler micro-climate, the trees weren't quite as far along in "leafing out" -- and the Kwanzans were in full floral peak, including this one.

*This is not Rockville proper but the Post Office has it listed as a Rockville address.

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The same delightful double-flowering Kwanzan cherry tree at floral peak contrasted on a clean, rain-washed, gentle blue sky, Grosvenor Park, Rockville, Md., 4:07PM April 20, 2013.

The blossoms on these trees remind me of the Truffula trees in Dr. Seuss's The Lorax. And as I've mentioned, I think they are prettier than the Yoshino "Japanese" cherry blossoms that everyone gets so worked up about.

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The only problem in his life -- aside from the usual chaos of his female relationships including the current one Shannon and in which I refused to be involved during my ill-fated visit there last July -- is that he has to move. His landlord wants to reclaim current place in which he lives, so he has to find another place. He is planning on remaining in Flagler Beach for the time being, and may even move closer to the "center" (i.e., SR 100 and A1A).

One last picture of aforementioned double-flowering Kwanzan cherry tree at peak contrasted on a gentle April blue sky -- and probably the last such image of a Kwanzan cherry at peak that I shall post until next spring.

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Work is alright, I think, although it looks like my grant related work that has been my long-term assignment for the past two years may be ending by early June. This week, though, I've been back to contacting small towns and counties (presently all in Texas).

Yours truly in profile heading toward Grosvenor Park II ("GP II") where LP lives.

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Lastly, I had a great gym workout tonight including a full hour (55 minutes + 5 minute cool down) on the treadmill jogging 5.17 miles / expending approx. 730 calories / climbing 739 feet (if the displays are to be believed); an hour of light-to-moderate weight-lifting; and a half hour in the swimming pool.

The behemoth and massively energy consuming Grosvenor Park II (or "2") located next to "GP I" building. (As LP once remarked, "You can't walk through the lobby without using energy ...")

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My weight on the big scale (wearing only bathing trunks) was a whisker over 156 pounds or down 27.5 pounds from my original weight on that scale 10 months ago on June 23, 2012 and -- as I've noted before -- owing to some muscle mass gain, without doubt down at least 30 pounds in fat. My goal has been 145 pounds but I'll take the low 150s by the one-year anniversary.

The lobby with the Grosvenor Park II building with its 1980s décor that itself is a throwback to the original 1960s Modernist décor.

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After we met, we drove around Rockville, Potomac, and the Cabin John area and stopped at Glen Echo park before heading back into D.C. by nightfall. We also spent about 45 minutes at a Panera in Rockville that was surprisingly pleasant, esp. with what sounded like John Coltrane music playing softly.

A large home set back on a large lot along a road in Potomac, Md., 6:10PM April 20, 2013.

I have additional pictures from that part of the day (i.e., the drive), but I'll try to post them some other time.

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Turning to the weather, it was sunny and on the cool side today. This spring has been mostly really pleasant in that regard. And we may get some additional needed rainfall on Wednesday night.

The intersection of Glen Mill, Glen, and South Glen Roads near Watts Branch Park, Potomac, Md., 6:11PM April 20, 2013.

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OK, that's all for now. At this point, I think I'm not going to update the blog again (unless circumstances warrant it) until Thursday or Friday night.

--Regulus

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