Monday, September 28, 2009

Okay, could people please stop dying now? Seriously?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

So Jamie and the s.o. arrived while I was at work on Sunday. They came down to the bar with the b.h. and ate while I worked. It was great to see them,and my night went by very quickly.
On Monday, we went downtown and got a pastry and a cup of coffee, and set off on foot to see a bit of local color.
We went to the capitol building to get a quick pic of Howard Dean's portrait, and somebody walked right into the picture. Then a lot of other people followed, most of them wearing several pounds of medals on their chests. I guess this is what we mean when we use the phrase "top brass." It was a bit intimidating, honestly. I turned around to discover that the b.h. had wandered to the other side of the very large entrance hall, inspecting some more traditional portraits. Within moments, he was lost in a sea of very imposing and important-looking people. Eventually the parade ended, and a guide began describing some of the features of said hall to the guests. I kept seeing the b.h.'s head pop up over large shoulders of serious men, looking helplessly at us while we giggled and wondered what all the fuss was about. When he finally got back to us, he said he's forgotten that the President of Macedonia was visiting.
"I was totally being followed by the Secret Service," he grinned. It was a bit unnerving, but mostly hilarious. We could not have looked more innocuous, the four of us with fair-trade coffee and cameras, but it's nice to know that those guys take their jobs seriously.
We drove in to Burlington, walked on the lakefront, and got lunch at a great little Asian restaurant that I believe was called A Single Pebble. I'll try to remember to post pictures later, but right now I am on the couch surrounded by dog love and loathe to get up. After lunch we drove to Burywater, stopped by the casa del Jerry and Ben, took more photos, swung over to the Cider mill, ate doughnuts (fresh, hot, CIDER doughnuts- yum!) and then shot pool and ate dinner at The Alchemist. Man, I LOVE that place. We came back to the house and watched a couple episodes of Eastbound and Down, which they had never seen and we happened to have gotten from Netflix that morning, and then hit the hay early. We got up early on Tuesday, went up to Barre to thrift shop (I scored two pairs of $5 corduroys and a $3 J Crew sweater-woot!) and had lunch at the co-op up there. We also visited the Maple farm just outside of town and fed the magic goat. I had to work at four, but Jamie and the and the b.h. came in for a late drink and a light snack, so again my night was lovely and smooth.
They left early on Wednesday, and I napped and then got up to do some laundry and wash some dishes. Tonight I waited tables in the main dining room for the second time. It went relatively smoothly and I made good money and got home about an hour earlier than I normally do as a bartender. The b.h. is feeling ill, which is a huge bummer because my folks will be here tomorrow and for the next week. We are planning a trip to Montreal on Sunday, and I hope the b.h. doesn't miss out.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

I can't believe it's been almost a week since my last post. Time is a'flyin'. So I worked on Tuesday night, a double on Wednesday, and had Thursday off. We're busy trying to get the house in order, since our friends from Georgia arrive today, stay until Wednesday, and then my parents arrive on Friday. It would be easier if we were not smack in the middle of a season change, as well. I had to bring the Meyer Lemon tree inside, where it doesn't have a real home yet, and I've dragged out the winter gear as well. It all needs to be laundered, along with the guest bedding.
I'm looking forward to having some company, and the weather looks like it will be gorgeous (barring the thirty-something temperature tonight, of course). Yesterday I bought some flowers at the Farmer's Market, and today I'll shop for beer and snack food. What more could a guest want, right?
In other news, I have finally utilized the neti pot I bought months ago. It feels really weird, but so far my sinuses seem to have improved.
Hoping we get to the World's Tallest File Cabinet this week. If we do, I'll be sure to post pics so you can see the glory for yourselves.
For now, I'm back to the grindstone.

Monday, September 14, 2009

I had a big list of stuff I needed when I set out today. We're having friends up from Georgia next weekend, and my parents a few days after that. So there were linens to replace. Also, I am in dire need of work shirts now that I am a server, because the uniform is more specific. So black button downs were on the list. You'd be surprised how difficult those are to find and, in my case, afford. Sorry, but I'm not dropping fifty bucks on a shirt made in China that I am going to be wearing and washing and ironing a couple times a week while sweating and humping food and drinks around.
So anyway, I did a whole lot of shopping. Found most of what I needed, minus the shirts. I even scored some Halloween costumes for the dogs while I was at the Goodwill. Of course, I have no intention of spoiling that surprise, so don't bother. You'll just have to wait.
On the way home, I was once again marveling at this place. I was telling the b.h. the other day that whenever I have a day off and I'm driving around, I kind of forget that we actually live here. It still feels like vacation, mostly because I have never lived in a place like this and the beauty of it still strikes me every day. Lately, the air has been a bit more crisp at night, and the trees are starting to blush just a little with the colors of fall. Here and there, small trees have already completely changed. As I was driving home tonight, the sun was setting behind me and the mountains were bathed in sunlight, and all I could think about was how they will look in the coming weeks as fall sets in. I can't wait.
Found out the other day that there is a cider mill in Burywater, complete with cider doughnuts (a la Ellijay, GA). Also, there are many places to pick apples. Now that I am starting to meet some locals I'm finally getting the really vital information. I have also been looking into cranberries. There are bog tours in some surrounding states, and that's on my short list. I still haven't identified the berries in the backyard (sheer laziness, I promise you), but I can't seem to get enough at a time to make anything of them anyway. Ah, well. Se la vie.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

I was on the way to work yesterday when I saw a large group of teabaggers staging a protest. It was surprising, but the best part was that they were getting absolutely no positive response. In Athens, those people would have had an equal number of cheers and jeers. Here they were just kind of annoying and disruptive. I saw a woman with a sign that read "I (Heart) Joe Wilson", and I leaned out my window and suggested she move to South Carolina right away.
In other news, I have been working a lot, but feeling okay about it. I trained as a server for a couple of hours on Thursday night. It was very, very slow, and I was being trained by a guy who is pretty lackadaisical, to put it politely, about his service. The next night I showed up to be a food runner, and was informed that not only would I be waiting tables, but that my section was larger than a normal one, and that I was not the only brand new server who was in this position. Uh... okay, I guess. And it was, for the most part. I was very, very busy, but for the most part I was able to give better service than I ever had at that last restaurant.
Yesterday we went to the farmer's market. I got some lemon cucumbers, apples, local bacon for the b.h., and we each got a slice of pizza. Mine had goat cheese, tomatoes, and kale, and his had fresh sausage and pears. I have no idea how much longer the farmer's market will go, but I love it and I will be there until it's dne for the season.
We went to brunch at the Local Restaurant this morning, since I had been alerted by a pastry student that it would be especially awesome this week. It was. The theme was French, and there was a Pacific Northwestern table as well. The b.h. loaded up on meat and fish, while I had an omelet, a sour cherry crepe, fresh fruit, various cheeses, and a couple of amazing mushroom fritters. We'll definitely be doing that again.
So I'm off to do some more reading, then iron my shirt and head to work again. I'm off tomorrow, so hopefully I can get the house in order. We're having company next week, and the dog hairballs are getting restless.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

I really need to get to bed, but I wanted to say something positive after that last post.
Last night President Obama (those words still make me giddy with relief) made a fantastic speech on Health Care. If you didn't see it, you should. It made sense, and he took a stand, and it made me proud.
Now, if only that whole "logic" thing would get contagious...
I just returned from chasing Kilgore across the street. We went out for a walk, and I failed to notice The Neighbor's cat in our side yard. Having a less than vice-like grip on the leash, I of course lost it when he bolted. The cat looked momentarily smug (this has happened before) while he watched the leash unwind to the length at which KG is normally pulled up short, left barking and whining in my grip, but then his smugness turned to panic as the dog was suddenly on top of him. Luckily, he managed to get away, but unluckily he bolted across the street and ran behind his own house, with KG in hot pursuit, followed by his (now fully extended) leash and a clunking plastic handle, which was followed by Wyatt and me. I was yelling at the dog while also yelling to The Neighbor, trying to reassure him that KG would not in fact, eat the cat. When Wyatt and I finally arrived on the scene, Wyatt proceeded to squat and do his business right at the neighbor's feet while Kilgore raced around behind and under the house in pursuit of the cat. Eventually (this really only took a minute or less, but it felt like an eternity), Kilgore got his leash tied around enough random boards and posts and whatnot that he was stuck. I handed Wyatt's leash to The Neighbor, apologizing profusely and promising a quick cleanup, and then made my way as carefully as possible (wearing clogs, which we all know are fabulous climbing shoes) down toward Kilgore. The yard is at an impossible angle, so there is an immediate drop off beside the driveway that drops even further behind the garage. In between there are piles of dirt and ash, as well as ditches (I presume they were dug to help water runoff, or they were dug by water runoff) spanned by rotting boards, and various posts, old shutters, and the like.
What I discovered, much to my dismay, was that despite The Neighbor's constant attention to his lawn, driveway, and various and sundry mechanical devices (he is forever trimming, refinishing, and puttering), the place was actually a total mess, and very dangerous to boot. There was no way for me to even get around back there to figure out where the leash was stuck, much less to untie it and get the dog out safely. I could barely reach him at all, due to the aforementioned mess and the lay of the land up here on the steepest block in Vermont. After nearly breaking my neck and slightly injuring my already-sore ankle, I got close enough to unhook the leash from KG's harness, then grabbed hold of him and dragged him back to where The Neighbor was waiting with Wyatt and Wyatt's business. I switched Wyatt's leash to KG, and then hustled both of them back across the street, apologizing over my shoulder.
I opened the door calmly, still smiling, and then closed it behind us and proceeded to spank Kilgore harder than I ever have before. I then grabbed a grocery bag, ran across to collect Wyatt's mess, put it in the trash, and came back inside and sat down and cried. Is this what a nervous breakdown feels like?
I have been burning the proverbial candle at both ends this week, working early and then late and then early, then going to a meeting at the Local Restaurant after my other job yesterday, where it was explained to us in no uncertain terms that we were expected to wait tables as well as bartend. Some of you may be aware that this is not exactly good news for me. After the meeting I went into my the office of the Big Boss (at least, he's our Big Boss, but he has many bosses, if that gives you an idea of what I'm dealing with) to discuss this. The end result is that I will not only be working seven days a week henceforth, but that I will likely be working at both jobs on one or two of those days. This is not what I was hoping for. I thought that when I went from four jobs to two that I would actually have some time to myself. I believe I was wrong.
So presently I am out of coffee and minus one dog leash, and reporting to work in four hours to be be trained to do something I really, really don't want to do. Tomorrow I will work from 7am to 3pm, then go home and change and report back at 5pm for another job (food runner, which is a waitress that doesn't have to talk to the guests as much) I don't want to do. Then I will bartend on Saturday and Sunday night, and Monday- well, I don't know, because the schedule is not up at either job for next week.
But I don't work full time, so I don't have health insurance.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

I went into a Local Resale Shop for the first time today. I was looking for some shirts that I can wear while bartending. Not having been to work, however, I was wearing jeans and a tee shirt. So I'm standing there flipping through a rack when a saleswoman approaches me. She asks if she can help me, and I reply that I am just looking around. She engages me in conversation, wherein she discovers that I have never been to the store before.
"I'm not really great at fashion..." I say in reply, and am about to say that I have fun trying and that's why I'm there, etc. etc.
She looks me up and down and says "Well, we don't really have a lot of t-shirts. We do have jeans."
Awkward. And hilarious. And then she just keeps on keeping on, and she will not leave me alone. I can't figure out if she was flirting with me or if she thought I was going to shoplift.
I didn't find anything to buy, unfortunately, but they did have some cool stuff.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Whew. There was some stress in the past few days regarding my second job, but things are ironed out. I think I'm going to be working every day for at least a couple weeks, but that's better than not enough work.
The restaurant is getting better. We've just changed the entire menu, and are still in the middle of getting the wine/beer/cocktail list together, but I am feeling more comfortable behind the bar, so the rest of it will come together.
The best thing is that I am getting to see a lot more of the b.h., since he is no longer getting up before dawn. It's been great.
Missing the wedding of a very good friend in Chicago this weekend due to lack of time and funds. Crushing. I have actually been dreaming about it. But I'm sure i will get a full report from T, and there are always pictures...

Wednesday, September 02, 2009


"Please sign in, so we know how many corpses we're looking for if there's a car in the lot this evening."

Kilgore loves his new backpack. They say you should give high energy *cough* dogs a job to do.

Keep in mind that the camera makes them look farther away than they are. This one is right at the beginning, and they're not far ahead of us (maybe 50 feet), but are already much higher up.

Neato mushroom growing from a log.

At our rest stop. Wyatt's clearly had enough of our nonsense.

And here he is again, at his summit- about ten feet below the actual summit.

The view from the top.

Some other show-offs and their dog. That's Lake Champlain in the background.