songbird's crazy world

life in and around NYC is insane

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Sunrise at Cocoa Beach

On vacation.

Friday, October 21, 2016

good news

A propos of what I've been discussing all week...

I had a follow up visit with my doctor yesterday.  He is pleased with me, with my weight loss, with my blood work.

He wants me to stop taking my blood pressure medication.  He wants me to come back next month, so he can see what effect, if any, that has on me.

I am so happy right now.

Thursday, October 20, 2016


I think one of the reasons my friend's medical situation has me so rattled is purely a selfish one.

Of course I am worried for her, I see her suffering, I heard the despair and despondency in her voice.  And I'm trying so hard to be supportive and upbeat and positive. 

But there's something else.

She's 10 years older than I am, morbidly obese, diabetic, and dealing with the results of ignoring her weight and her disease.

Looking at her, I see my future. 

A future I do not want.

And then I remind myself about the changes I've made.  How I'm eating healthier. How I have discovered a love of physical fitness. 

That I have lost almost  70 pounds.

I still have another 60-65 pounds to go until my goal weight.

But I feel strong and healthy.

I like this feeling. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


So last night I visited my friend, the one who has been in and out of the hospital for months.  When we planned our evening, it was supposed to be take out at her house.  Instead, I had a burger from the hospital coffee shop.

My friend is not doing well.  she has been dealing with the health issues for seven months now, and the planned treatment will take many more weeks.   She is lonely, despondent, fearful insecure, needy.  She's not sleeping well, and that's affecting her ability to concentrate and to think clearly.

Last night I helped her move from one part of the hospital to another, so that she can begin the next phase of her treatment.  the move set off a panic attack, the likes of which I have never seen. 

She told me she is convinced she will die in the hospital, that she'll bleed to death during surgery, and that she is resigned to dying, she's ready for it.

I stayed until another friend came to hold her hand.

I am so worried for her.  She's going through an unbelievable ordeal.  And she's not going to be OK for a long, long time.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Looking skyward

“Mortal as I am, I know that I am born for a day. But when I follow at my pleasure the serried multitude of the stars in their circular course, my feet no longer touch the earth.” 
― Ptolemy

Sunday morning, I needed to be at the breast cancer walk by 6:30 AM, long before the sunrise.  As I left Drew's house, this is what I aw:

Yes, the full moon...the Hunter Moon.

And then last night...

I've always wanted to see a rocket launch, but I've never been in Florida when NASA had one planned.

But last night NASA launched a rocket, unmanned and loaded with supplies for the International Space Station, from Virginia.  And it was visible from Long Island.  I watched it rise in the south and head east.

The photos don't do it justice.

I'd love to see another launch, closer to the launch site.  But this will do for now.

Monday, October 17, 2016

The Ritz Cafe

Ritz Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

We had tickets to a production at the John W. Engeman Theater, and wanted to have dinner before the show. So we found ourselves  at the Ritz Cafe.

Small, cozy restaurant, maybe 10 tables total, the space is dominated by the bar.  We opted for a special prix fixe menu   -   appetizer, salad, entree.

Our meal began with crusty bread, served with  flavored olive oil, butter, and roasted garlic.

Eggplant rollatini was a casserole consisting of thin slices of eggplant, layered over ricotta and topped with melted mozzarella.  Baked clams was also served as a casserole, whole clams topped with seasoned bread crumbs.

Caesar salad (romaine, croutons, cheese and dressing) and house salad (mixed greens, cgrape tomatoes, cucumber, vinaigrette on the side) were fresh and flavorful.

We both ordered pasta.  His was scallops over angel hair pasta, mine was rigatoni bolognese.  Both were excellent, portions were large enough to be shared.

Service was cheerful and efficient.   Definitely worth a repeat visit.

Northport Harbor

 Back in March, Drew and I saw a productions of   1776 at City Center.  It was one of their Encore productions, done in modern dress with a minimalist stage, and the actors often carried their scripts. We loved it, of course.

So when we heard that a local theater was planning a full production, we had to get tickets.

The John W. Engeman Theater is in Northport, a quaint village on the north shore of Long Island.  The village features a lovely harbor, an eclectic mix of restaurants, interesting art galleries and other small businesses.  The theater was built in 1932 as a movie theater, but began producing live, Broadway-style theatrical productions in 2006.

Our first stop was the Ritz Cafe, a small but interesting restaurant near the harbor (review to follow).  Then we took a walk along the harbor.

On our walk to the theater, we found something interesting:

That's a 1965 police cruiser. The sign in the window says look but don't touch.  Yes, Northport has its own small police force.

The purpose of the trip, of course, was to see the production of 1776.  We were not disappointed.  The show is an interesting mix of political philosophy, political pragmatism, music, dancing and even humor.  Decent cast -- most are Equity members -- good costuming and set design. Very enjoyable show.  Overall a lovely evening.

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