I can’t go to work today!!!

Oh, wait a minute, I’m retired!
Yesterday I did something to my back whilst doing nothing, well not quite nothing, I was changing the bedsheets. Not a strenuous task, but these old muscles aren’t what they used to be. I pottered around the house all day faffing, can’t sit still, even in retirement. Last night was another story. I just couldn’t get comfortable, consequently I’ve been awake since 4 am. If I’d been working (even from home) it would have been a problem. It’s still been a tough day, but I only did what I chose to do. I baked bread, made some picante sauce, cooked lunch, did some washing, so I wasn’t idle, but I didn’t have to rush.
I’d planned to go to Pescara to pick up the number plate for our bike trailer…and perhaps a few choice items from a home store I like there, but my days are my own now so I can go tomorrow, or even next week if we’re still in the yellow zone (zona gialla).
As you see by the photo, today wasn’t an inviting day to be outside. The sun broke through and it brightened up for a little while, but still a good day to stay home.
Tomorrow’s forecast is sunshine. A lovely day for a drive along the Adriatic coastline to Pescara.
Yes tomorrow is another day!

The voices in my head sometimes ESCAPE!

Coming out of Costco tonight the voices in my head just ran riot…….“oh thank heavens it’s stopped raining. My god, does that woman know she’s too old to expose that much of her bosom, and you really shouldn’t wear short skirts at THAT age. Great, someones’ parked next to me. If I have a door ding I’ll be upset!”

SHUT UP SHUT UP, I pleaded, but the voices continued.

“Do I need more wine? No, I have enough. What am I cooking this weekend? Hey watch where you’re going. Dammed Hyundai’s they’re taking over.”

Oh, what a lovely Porsche, I bet that can shift. I wonder who’s it is. Probably some hot young man.” 

I was aware of someone standing in front of me and looked up to see a gentleman smiling at me. He was about the same age as me (okay, I’ll tell you mid fifties) and quite well put together.

“I’m not a young man, but I still consider myself a pretty warm, not steaming hot, but certainly not cold.”

Was he reading my mind, I was speechless. I stood and gawked at him.

He laughed out loud now. “I guess you live alone,” he said, “and yes you were talking out loud.”

AHHHHHHHHHHHH!

screaming-woman

Hotels – Love the Grandeur

I love to travel and stay in Grand hotels. My favorite Hotels are the older ones, the Hotels with history. The Grand Flora in Rome is one of my favorites and I will go back one day. From its grand marble staircases, to it’s incredibly friendly staff, my vacation was complete. I was in Rome staying in a beautiful hotel.

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My home is the colorful state of Colorado, and Colorado has its own hotels. I have stayed in a few, but none compare with ‘The Brown Palace’ in Denver.

I had the pleasure of spending a night there this past weekend.

My only daughter is getting Married so we had an appointment at Best Designer Wedding Dresses in Denver — anna bé bridal boutique

We met in the Brown Palace and enjoyed a glass of champagne before visiting the beautiful Bridal Boutique, where we were greeted by Michael, the senior stylist. My daughter, myself and four of our closet friend enjoyed more champagne, whilst perusing the wonderful designer dresses. With Michael’s help we found a gorgeous dress, veil and belt. We celebrated with more champagne of course.

After another celebratory drink in a local bar, we made our way to Linger, where we had dinner reservations. Fabulous restaurant, fabulous dinner. We saved room for dessert at ‘Little Man Ice Cream’ and sat in the park enjoying a glorious August eventing.

Exhausted, I took a cab back to the Brown Palace to enjoy the peace, tranquility and Luxury of this historical landmark.

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Do you think it looks haunted? It is of course.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gorgeous stained glass ceiling

Gorgeous stained glass ceiling

 

 

 

 

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The bed was so comfortable, that I wouldn’t have heard a ghost had one visited my room. I slept like a log. The following morning I enjoyed a wonderful complimentary breakfast at my window table, and then lingered for a while to take photographs.

Even though this gorgeous hotel is only forty minutes from my home, I felt as though I had stepped into a different world, or maybe a different era. Next time my crazy hectic life stresses me out, I will remember this little haven of tranquility and escape to it. Maybe it will inspire one of my future stories.

If you are in the Denver area, give it a try. You won’t regret it.

 

Dead of July (Small)

 

 

 

Officially Christmas!

I feel like I have climbed the steep hill to Christmas, and now I am looking down into a beautiful valley of lights and good will.

Christmas in AspenWe allow ourselves to be stressed leading up to Christmas, rushing around shopping, buying gifts, attending and arranging parties, forgetting what Christmas is all about. Nothing will change this, it’s what we do. Christmas is a little over a week away, and I am almost done with shopping. It’s time enjoy my friends and family. Spend time with them reflecting on previous years.

We will talk about those who are no longer with us. Remembering happy times of years gone by. Do I miss my mother at Christmas? Of course, but somehow I think she is with me still.

My mother would attend Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. Sometimes I went with her. It was magical. Afterwards we would sit together by the Christmas tree at home and enjoy a glass of Sherry whilst opening our ‘Christmas Eve Present’. They were special times.

So after the hustle and bustle of shopping and cooking, take time to sit down and make memories with your loved ones. Remember what Christmas is about. We celebrate Christmas in memory of the birth of a very special child.

 

 

Fall in the Highlands – Denver

With a friend visiting, I was able to act like a tourist as we explored the quaint Highlands community. We walked a few blocks on 32nd between Lowell and Perry visiting lovely little shops away from the beaten track.

We worked up an appetite before eating in ‘Fire on the Mountain.’ Fantastic boneless chicken wings with hot sauce. I tasted their ‘jerk sauce’, which was so good, I had to buy a jar to take home. All of the sauces are made in the restaurant and the ‘jerk sauce’ tasted like it came straight from the Carribean.

Our next stop was Tennyson, where we wandered around the antique shops, but had ice-cream on our minds so we drove to LoHi and visited ‘Little Man Ice Cream’ store. Yum!

I had a delicious Cream Fraiche Gelato and my friend had a salty caramel ice cream concoction that was to die for. As we were in the area we couldn’t resist stopping in Anna-Be the Bridal Store. Beautiful wedding dresses lined the walls. We ate our ice creams as we walked past Lola’s and the local restaurants before taking the footbridge across the I25. As we descended on the other side of the bridge, we was the ugliest work of art I have ever seen. Take a look at the red monstrosity below and tell me what you think it is.

After a little more shopping we stopped for a glass of wine in a delightful cheese and wine bar before taking the bridge across the Platte River and crossing the park into LoDo.

As it grew dark the patio’s of Larimer Square were filled with people enjoying a cocktail and taking advantage of a warm September evening.

Finally exhausted, we walked back to LoHi, which had become alive as people ate and relaxed.

I am looking forward to visiting the area with its lovely footpaths, parks and restaurants again soon.

Happy Friday in Colorado!

I have a friend staying with me from Kentucky. We share the same birthday, so we get together once every couple of years. Usually in January (our birthday is Jan 17th), but this year we decided to celebrate in the warmth. Look at vista that greeted me when I woke up. Pike’s Peak is all dressed up with the first snow of the season. Isn’t it pretty! Need to dust off my snowboard. Fifty five and still boarding (but not too fast).

The first snow of the season on Pike's Peak!

 

 

Lovely start to the day. What are we going to do?

Park Meadows mall to our favorite store NORDSTROM.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shopping until we need a glass of wine and a snack at my favorite wine bar.

 

 

More shopping until we can shop no more. Someone has to help stimulate the economy.

How to end the day?

 

 

 

Happy hour at with old friends at ‘Cool River’ on Bellevue.

A perfect Colorado Friday!

I hope you are all having as much fun as me.

Happy Friday!

 

Obsessed with Shoes!

Shoe shopping – what could be more fun?

Wonderful to go shopping on a weekday – a day off work and a couple of hours in the shoe department, what could be better?

Kevin is a shoe expert, he works magic in the Nordstrom shoe dept at Park Meadows. He never disappoints and just has a gift of finding the shoes you were dreaming of.

This afternoon he produced handmade Italian shoes I could not live without plus a pair of Tory Burch and Michael Kors for my daughter.

Money spent, pleasure brought, happiness!

So I didn’t travel far, but it was a trip to remember. It was a perfect end to a bad week.

Free e-book (Smashwords)

Last couple of days n Roma

It is early evening and I couldn’t walk any more even if I wanted to. We had a late breakfast this morning and then set off on a walking/shopping trip. We are pretty familiar with the city now so don’t need to check the map quite so often. We headed down towards the Trastevere district, stopping off on the way to buy some more tracky bottoms for Lester, oh and some more socks, apparently the ones I bought him a couple of days ago were so good he wanted more. We stopped off for coffee and cold drinks in a little sidewalk cafe and amused ourselves watching four German women turn up on bicycles in a flurry of chatter and chaos. They then proceeded to order beer and wine…..hope they could still handle their bikes.

My camera was like an extension of my hand as usual. Glad Lester is so patient as he had to keep stopping and coming back to find me.

We headed towards a wine shop where we tasted and purchased some Italian wine. A couple bottles of dessert wine and some local Dry wine.

Then back to the hotel and a shower. You need to shower and change at least twice a day here, it is so hot.

Now it is almost six o clock, we shared a salad and pizza, drank a couple of beers, and I have an ice cold Frascati in front of me. I could not walk another inch. I am too relaxed to move (also my feet are screaming stop). This place is fantastic, but it certainly wears you out, the temperature even now is around ninety degrees, and the humidity is off the scale.

Wish we could come every year. I need to continue writing, sell some books and make my fortune so I can retire here………a girl can dream right?

Oh and by the way…….forget the Ducati, I am buying myself a scooter to ride to work in the summer, can’t wait. Used to ride them in my teens and seeing them all here made me realize just how much I miss them.

It is now 7:00 pm and we are still sitting outside our hotel . Lester is reading and I am watching the world go by. Can’t read at ten top of Via Veneto, too much going on, even on a Monday. Scooters and motorcycles are speeding by, there is an old, but immaculate Ferrari Dino parked across the road. All the lights from the various restaurants are coming on as dusk sets in. I am going to miss this!

Wandering around Rome

We didn’t rent scooters today after all, we decided instead to rent a car tomorrow, get an early start and head for the Amalfi Coast. Its about a two hour drive and renting a car is about half the price of going by train. Lester has driven in Italy before on several occasions, so he is ready to compete with the Italian driving.

He decided to have a quiet day today, so after a walk through the gardens Borghese, and Piazza Poppola, he went back to find a peaceful spot in the gardens to read. I decided to do some shopping and wandering. It was incredibly humid today, but the gelato amaretto (yum) cooled me right down. I also had the difficult task of buying some mens socks…both my daughter and my husband always forget to bring socks on vacation. It seems like Italian men don’t wear them, and as I don’t know the Italian word for sock, it was quite an experience, but I did manage to make a purchase.

Now we are sitting having an afternoon beer and planning a picnic in the park. We have wine, beer, panini and pastries, a veritable feast. Will fill you in on how it went later.

We had a good picnic. Wine tastes better still in the park! The big slabs of Panini filled with meat proscutto and mortadella were delicious, washed down with crisp cold Italian wine (or strong Italian beer for Lester) just as good as a meal in any Italian restaurant. We took a walk through the huge Gardens Borghese again (Rome’s version of Central Park), ogled at a Ferrari/Maserati dealership and then back to the hotel to put our feet up and people watch. We will probably have an early night in preparation for our trip to the Amalfi Coast tomorrow.

Can’t believe our vacate. Is passing by so quickly.

Vatican city, shopping and more

It’s another lovely day in Roma.

Today after breakfast we head off to Vatican City. Can’t wait to send photos.
I haven’t mentioned the food much yet and I should. We eat gelato every day and it is the creamiest most delicious I have ever tasted. The flavors are so fresh and natural tasting. We have eaten pizza Roman style, thin and crispy with fresh herbs on top, freshly made gnocci, with basil, which up to now is my favorite, but more research of the food is definitely required! The hotel breakfast are smorgasbord of meat, fish, pastries, eggs, fruit juices, cappuchino, tea etc etc. Also because of Lester’s ‘Status’ (don’t laugh) we get free breakfast every day.

Time to hit the streets of Rome. Watch out Pope here I come.

I am truly exhausted, its 9:30 an we just furnished a delicious dinner of grilled vegetables and pasta (of course) with shrimp, Italian crusty bread and olive oil. The food is fresh and tasty.

The Pope was too busy to greet me personally (obviously wasn’t aware of Lester’s status), but I am sure he knew we were there.

Vatican City was very busy, but we spent time in the Vatican Museum, and finally, after waiting my whole life, I got to the Sistine Chapel. It was very crowded unfortunately, but the artwork on the ceiling is beautiful. Obviously cameras are not allowed, but it is implanted In my memory.

What are we doing tomorrow?????? Shopping…..yeahhhhh!