Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The month of April has skittered away on little blogless feet

At least from my point of view.  It has been, from a blog reading perspective, obviously a DRY month. I'm sorry.


But on another, and more positive note, you have all not had to share the annoying whining from me about:

- my computer troubles (Trojans, viruses, and worms, Oh My... all gone now) and of course my ongoing non available photos depository (which hopefully will be functional to me by the end of next month) My overloaded hard drive and my attempts to remove all my photos to memory sticks... See how lucky you've been?!

- our current benign house guest (Friend who used to own our dog Balou, and is in Corfu to deal with some business issues etc.)

- our HUGE and annoying search for the perfect house and animal sitter during our trip (yes everyone SAYS they want to do it, but usually not when we need them!!) and we found the perfect person.  He also knows how to fix things if they break so we are doubly blessed!!

- my upcoming departure (in ten days!) for the US (and all my clever whinging on THAT  issue)

- the latest in the continuing sa-aga of "what broke next" in our little house of dreams here in Corfu (but hey, the good news is the pool is full and I swam in it yesterday tho I am still marginally blue from the cold water...)

- my new ultra short hair cut.  (which I actually really like.)


Since last we "spoke", we have bottled the wine (alas the only pictures today) which is still a bit sharp but I think may actually be pretty good by this fall!!

We ended up with more bottles that we expected!  (T's late harvest attempt is not included in these photos as it was murky and we felt that perhaps it needed a bit more "resting time")

We are pleased with the color and the clarity - and just in case it's not so nice this fall...- it WILL  make beautiful vinegar for Christmas and go perfectly with our new olive oil that will be harvested this autumn.  (we KNOW that always turns out!)

It makes us a little sad but we are not planting a vegetable garden this year as we will not be here for the most important stage of growing. 

T leaves on the 20 May and we both get back home, in the middle of June. 

Amazingly we will be flying home together.  We haven't traveled either to or from the States together for years!

Slowly slowly we are getting ourselves psyched for the "great move" of my mother from New Mexico to Chicago.  Doing much of this by telephone is VERY stressful.  (It's also stressful for my mother who has VERY mixed feelings about leaving her hometown for the past 35 years.)

Her 3 grandson's and 2 great grandsons on the other had are really happy she will be closer and more available to visit and relate to.  Her great granddaughter will even take a shot at visiting her more frequently now that she's on the same side of the country (although South Carolina and Illinois are NOT actually close, they are still closer than South Carolina and New Mexico!)

I have arranged to take the Southwest Chief (train) from Santa Fe/Lamy to Chicago with my mother. 

She and I will share a room and see the country pass by the window for 27 hours!  My mother always wanted to take that trip, but never got around to it.  I figured we'd do it while T supervised the packers at the house. 

We'll arrive a bit before the household goods will arrive, but Lincolnwood has provided my mother with a hospitality suite for her to stay in until her things are moved into her apartment.

She's picked out a lovely two bedroom apartment and when T arrives he will start with the help of his sons (and a great friend who has tools!) to turn the second bedroom into a library for all my mother's beloved books.

We'll settle her in and then on the 13 of June have a birthday party in the community's private dining room - my mother turns 85!

We're hoping that all will come together with the fewest problems ever. 

I am sure we are optimists, but Oh Well!


  1. Have a great trip home. Don't worry, we'll still be here when you get back!

    Helena xx

    PS. That train journey sounds amazing. My mother is in her early seventies and doesn't act her age at all, but my mother-in-law is 89 so I know how it can be to arrange things over the telephone - and she lives a few miles away from us!xx

  2. I know of which you speak! Well, not of the wine and olive oil, but that may still be in the future, but about all the travel and family issues and older parents moving.

    Good luck and have some fun!

  3. We have trains here in the states? Who knew?

    I hope the travels go smoothly.

  4. I was wondering about the wine Jes..looking good!

    Only 10 days...I bet you can't wait! The train journey with your mother sounds perfect..it's lovely that she will finally get to do it.

  5. Dear Helena,

    Thank you so much for your kind words! We've managed to do a fair amount of things over the internet, but there are all sort of niggley things that need to be dealt with either face to face or at least by voice. (I expected little help from the "step" family members, and so far I have be correct in my assumptions!)

    My mother IS pretty sharp- but she IS 85 and sometimes mis-communications ensue!

    The train trip IS spectacular (at least for the first 15 hours or so, then it just seems really long. :-D Booking a room will be a total necessity for her so she can lie down for the night and sleep. (I will write a post just about the train trip, as it is worth the words and pictures!)

    Again, thanks for staying with the blog!

    Dear Miss Footloose,

    Family issues (in the OTHER country) seem to be the real dark side of expat life.

    In so many ways adapting to all the myriad of things we face culturally as an expat is so simple when compared with the challenges of maintaining a close family relationship with parents and children spread out all over the place as well.

    Thanks for the kind words.

    Dear Eric,

    SOME states have trains... Texas has the Amtrak Texas Eagle.

    I have all my fingers and toes crossed that the trip will be bumpless!

    Dear Ayak,

    Yes, I too was curious about the wine, we left it to settle for a long time, but friends who had bottled theirs ended up with a murkier wine, so we figured we'd give it a bit longer and just siphoned (and rested it) it a couple of more times before bottling.

    Like I said, it LOOKS good, tho when fall comes, that will be the real test!

    Like I mentioned in another reply, I will do a post on the train journey as it is a pretty cool trip. (I did it the first time in the 1970's alone with three small boys in "sit up seats" Though the views were spectacular, that trip was horrendous!)

    This time the trip with my mother should be, hopefully, close to what she will be expecting.

    Thanks for the comments...

  6. Dear Lacey,

    Thank you! (I plan on it and am hoping to avoid all the volcanic clouds that I can avoid!!)

  7. So good to see your blog again, Jes.
    Hope you have a wonderful trip and all goes smoothly with the big move. I have just realised that your mother shares a birthday with my son; while she will 85, he will be celebrating 22.
    Bon voyage!
    PS Love the wine pic.

  8. Hey ho dear Viv,

    Being busy, worrying over mother's move AND having your computer decide to act silly bugger is not good timing for a blog...

    I'll think of you and your son on the day! (and happys all around to the Geminis!)

    I'll try and keep a post up now and again, but it'll be tough from Santa Fe as my mother doesn't have internet. (or even any idea of why she'd need it!)

    Still I will give the odd post a try, particularly once back in Chicago- when I'm not unpacking or running all over the city playing chauffeur!


    ps- my granddaughter is 22 this November. (gah!)

  9. "ps - my granddaughter is 22 this November (gah!)"

    But, Jes, you were obviously a child bride!

    My elder daughter will be 24 on June 15th (June is not exactly the cheapest month for us.)

    Good luck with the trip and your mother's mega-move. Great if you can post occasionally from the New World, but the main thing is - ENJOY!



Related Posts with Thumbnails