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Barbara Fritchman Thompson Diary

Week of 11 March 2002

Latest Update: Sunday, 27 April 2003 08:39

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Monday, 11 March 2002

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By noon yesterday I had cleaned house, mowed the lawn, taken a shower, and was eating my lunch. Needless to say I was ready for my afternoon race watching nap more than ever. I did wake up in time to watch the last 150 laps or so. The race was over around 4:30. By the time I checked my mail it was time to leave for Frances's house.

We had a very nice pizza dinner at Pizza Hut followed by mom's homemade banana pudding back at Frances's house. We sat around and talked awhile before heading for home about 8:30.

I was so tired by the time the dogs had their last walk a little before ten that I came back in and went straight to bed. 

Firsts thing this morning I put out my weed and feed before working on the edging bricks along the driveway. Later this morning I am going over put out my dad's fertilizer for him. I have hit a conundrum where the driveway curves around the end of the shrub bed at the bottom of the hill. The previous owners have a large granite rock that more or less formed the edging for the curve. I had the landscape timbers placed on either side of the rock. With the new edging bricks things did not come out so perfect. Now I need to decide how to finish off that corner. I will work on it some more later in the week after I have had time to think about it for awhile.

This afternoon I have a haircut appointment at 1:00.

Guess that about sums up my Monday. I hope you have a good one.



Tuesday, 12 March 2002

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A little change from the normal routine this morning. I am off to the gym and grocery store today instead of tomorrow. Otherwise, I plan to spend the day at home working. A great day for staying indoors since it is to rain all day. 

I started a new book that came in on reserve for me at the library. On Green Dolphin Street by Sebastian Faulks. I have read two of his previous works both set in France, Birdsong and Charlotte Gray. In his most recent novel, Faulks had moved his setting to 1960's Washington, DC and New York. I believe Charlotte Gray is being released as a movie later this year. As a matter of fact Faulks is listed on my favorite author's page

Faulks' main characters Richard and Mary van der Linden have relocated to Washington from London as part of the Embassy staff. It is 1960 with the country getting geared up for the Nixon-Kennedy campaign. Mary falls in love with a British journalist who lives in the Village section of New York but comes to Washington often to cover the "inside" scoop of the election and life as a diplomat in Washington during the Cold War days.

I read very few books set in the political arena since I despise politics in general. I will give this one a chance since I like Faulk's characters and plot developments. His two previous novels focused a great deal of attention on historical accuracy of the time period interwoven with the impact on lives of his characters. 



Wednesday, 13 March 2002

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Rain, rain, and more rain. Yes, we are finally getting some much needed wet weather to help ease the continued drought problems. I was supposed to go get mulch this afternoon with my friend Robin's trailer but we cancelled until tomorrow because of the weather. Instead I shall spend the day at home working.

Otherwise, there is really not a whole lot going on at the Thompson Techno Grotto. Last night for dinner I made a skillet dinner using chicken, cream of mushroom soup, and peas with Bob's special rice. It actually turned out pretty good. 

Poor Malcolm is bouncing off the walls from not being able to get outside and do any playing with this wet weather. Perhaps we will take a walk later today.



Thursday, 14 March 2002

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malcolm-tape-snout.jpg (60438 bytes)   As you can see, it is never a dull moment around here with the dogs. Malcolm is still very much a puppy, into stealing everything he can get his "snout" into. I had this roll of tape on my office floor. In all fairness he traded the roll of tape for two toys. Whenever I find toys or balls lying in funny places I always go in search to see what he has thieved. At one point he had both the tape around his snout and the ball in his mouth. He dropped it when he jumped up on the sofa before Bob could that picture.

It rained all day yesterday preventing us from getting outside to do more than "potty break" outings. I did try to play some hall ball with Malcolm when I took breaks from the computer. I worked pretty much all day sitting at my desk. 

I decided late yesterday afternoon to go to the 6:15 Body Pump class at the gym. Having missed Monday's class and not being able to go today, I needed to get one class in this week. Especially after sitting most of the day yesterday. Remember, I spent 20 years in a job where sitting still for long periods of time was not part of the day. I find it very difficult to sit at my desk at home and work for long hours without getting up and taking a break. I also have to be careful when I do a lot of cutting and pasting/mouse work to make sure I give my wrist a chance to rest.

We had an early dinner of left over chicken from the night before. I added another can of mushroom soup and some peas which we ate over noodles. Then off to the gym. We spent last night reading. I am still reading On Green Dolphin Street by Faulks. It is okay but not nearly as good as his previous two books.

My friend Robin is coming over today with her trailer so I can go get some mulch. The place where I buy the mulch delivers it in a large dump truck. There is not a good place to have them dump the mulch except in the driveway which would require me getting it all out in one day or wheel barrowing it back up the drive to the front yard. In exchange, I am giving Robin the landscape timbers I am not using which are still in very good shape. Robin will tow back the trailer of mulch and just leave it sitting until I have time to get it all unloaded and spread. If I had a place to store one of those I would buy one for myself, as much hauling around as I do.

I have Friends of the Library meeting this afternoon then will come back by the house to pick up Bob to go out for dinner. 




Friday, 15 March 2002

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What a beautiful day to be working outside yesterday. Robin had a noon deadline so we hurriedly went out to pick up one load of mulch. Bob helped my to off load it so we could go out and get a second load. Robin left the trailer and Bob and I off loaded the second batch then I came in to take a lunch/rest break. Before Robin arrived I finished the edging along the drive and reset the landscape timbers that form boxes in front of the porch. 

After lunch I spread the mulch. We had dumped each load in their respective natural areas but I did not have nearly enough to finish. Robin needs her trailer for tomorrow and is coming by late this afternoon to pick it back up. We are going back out to get more mulch for my beds next week.

I finished up in the yard around 1:30 and came in to take my shower. I worked at my desk the remainder of the afternoon until it was time for me to leave to go to the library for my meeting.

I was pretty tired last night so we walked the dogs about 9:20 for last time and then I went to bed to read. I ended up staying up until eleven to finish On Green Dolphin Street. I think Faulks should go back to his original settings and writing style. His other books had more a literary feel and were much better written. In this novel, he tried to be too much like the current pop fiction writers and turn out something "best sellerish". I will admit that using Viet Nam as the "war" in this novel was not my favorite. Charles, the British diplomat served in Nam. Frank, the journalist whom Charlie's wife has the affair, was there as a reporter. While Faulks ties in the sad life of Charles as he tries to cope with post Nam depression, etc it just does not come off very well. 

I am off this morning to run to the drugstore to pick up Lenore's prescription and to another drugstore for one for Kerry. After I do that I am going to drive over to the sheep farm where CBCR often does tent events during sheep dog trials. Today through Sunday there is a sheep dog handler's clinic at the farm. My friend Fletch will be attending the clinic and I am driving over to have a short visit with him and watch some of the action. I will be back home early this afternoon.



Saturday, 16 March 2002

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When I got back yesterday afternoon from having lunch with Fletch and watching a little of the sheep dog training I decided to wash my car. It was just too pretty a day to spend the remaining part indoors working. I did not feel like fixing dinner so we elected Chinese take out. 

What am I reading? Science Fiction, surprise, surprise. I know, I didn't use to read mysteries either. But, a converted reader of Science Fiction, never. The only other time I have read in that genre was when Bob and I first met. I read some Heinlein which I actually did not mind. Now, I am again reading Science Fiction at the request of my dear husband, this time Jerry Pournelle's Janissaries. As many of you know who also read Bob's page, he has decided to try to write some fiction. He has asked me to read this series so I can read what he writes and do some comparison of style, plot development, etc.

I reluctantly agreed to read the first book in the series and find myself totally shocked that I actually like it. I sat up reading until almost 10:30 and lack only about 50 pages of finishing the book. Once you get into the meat of the story, it reads very much like an Edward Rutherfurd or James Michener. Or course, the main reason I enjoy it is the excellent writing and character development.

It is supposed to rain later today, most likely washing out our club observation tonight. We need the rain so desperately on the East Coast, most of which is in serious to severe drought conditions. I have all sorts of odd jobs to do around the house including brushing the dogs, paying bills, and getting some work done on the poisons book.

And of course, completing my reading assignment. I have two more books in the series to go.


Sunday, 17 March 2002

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Happy St. Patrick's Day to everyone.

I had a very productive but tiring day yesterday. I started off my morning by doing a tool inventory of the upstairs and downstairs toolboxes. The  downstairs toolbox is my toolbox  from before Bob and I were married. He also has one downstairs as well. Not long after we moved in this house we realized we needed one for upstairs so we would not have to be running up and down every time we needed to fix something up here.

Over the years it seems the tools in my downstairs box gradually either migrated other places or were lost. Not sure how that happened since I am very careful with tools and so is Bob. Anyway, every time I needed a screw driver downstairs I could never find one in my box. Bob's box is primarily ratchet sets and other big stuff. Yesterday I finally took inventory of both boxes to see what we needed and cleaned out both of them. A lot of the stuff went in jars and peanut cans stored on the shelves in the basement of stuff we only need occasionally. I need to stop at Sears and pick up a couple of decent Phillips head screw drivers but other than that we are in pretty good shape.

After that experience I brushed the dogs coats and teeth then paid bills. By now it was time for lunch. After lunch I worked at my desk on the poison's book and some stuff for the Friends. I had planned to mow the lawn in the afternoon but we had a brief shower right after lunch time. But, the sun came out shortly afterward. I gave the grass time to dry a little and went out about 3:3o to mow. I also sawed some of the lower branches off a couple of the maples to allow more sun to the lawn and grass underneath.

It was dinner time by now. We had left over Chinese and then spent the remainder of the evening reading. I am now reading the second book of the Janissaries. 

Today is to be cooler and rain. Of course we clean house this morning and Bob does the laundry. This afternoon I will watch the race if it not rained out. It is just down the road a little in Darlington, SC. It may be raining there as well. 




Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 by Barbara Fritchman Thompson. All Rights Reserved.