Saturday, December 31, 2011

It is time for a political comment

I do not belong to a political party or group. I pretty much support people I believe are going to try and do something I agree with. And not mess up things that do not matter. If I contact you and you do not respond your name is xed out no matter who you are. After all, if Richard Nixon responded to a childish message, sent when I was a foolish teen, well that established the bar for me.

I have written to famous writers, columnists, and public servants. Also politicians. I have received responses from a few, never expected--unless it is a public servant. If I am asking you a question I expect an answer. I do not care if it is a form letter, I can make decisions based on a form letter (mostly if you evade answering the question) but no response tells me you don't give a shit. Period.

I once wrote to my 2 senators, and only 1 responded. With a form letter, but a form letter that let me know he was aware of the situation and afraid to open his mouth. And he put me on his mailing list and I receive occasional updates and what he is doing. Fair is fair. I don't like the guy but he will be there forever, might as well know what he is up to.

A few years ago I sent a letter to President Obama, way before he was elected. No response, nothing, not a thing. Nuttin. Then a while later I started getting emails asking me for money for the campaign. Why would I give money to people who do not even have a form letter handy. This morning I had over 10 emails from Obama, Michelle, Joe Biden and other assorted minions asking me for money. And my phone number. They are desperate for this money before midnight, it must be 2011 money. Huh? And where do they think they are going to take me to lunch?

And they have given my email address to some groups I really do not like, don't know if they sold it or just shared it. I wear fur, support the Canadian Indian tribes also those folks in Finland. I also wear leather shoes. I don't judge if you wear plastic oil-from the ground- shoes. I don't make fun of people who buy factory produced chicken if that is all they can afford. I do not like people who buy potato chips and soda pop for their children on a daily basis, but there is nothing I can do about that right now.

You know I have never received a call when these politicians are in China. I am registered at the embassy.

All joking aside, I never designated this stuff as spam when it was just the occasional plea and I never open email if I don't know the person. I just chuckled at their persistence, I never sent them money or responded in any way. But over 10 in one morning? I may have to take care of this.

Funny of the day-to me: Recently watched a documentary on Queen Elizabeth II and the workings of the royal family. Every piece of mail the Queen receives is answered by a hand written note. Wouldn't it be a hoot to get a response from the Queen. Don't know how long it takes though, should I use U.S. address or China address? Or try to do one of each. Decisions, decisions.

What a Debacle

There will be no pictures, frankly I scared myself when I looked in the mirror, Big Daddy is still Rudolf and I am so not happy.

We got a late start today and it went downhill from there.

We went to the basement movie store. There was this guy standing in front of the new releases. The table is 3 feet wide. And a rather tall large man was standing front and center looking at the movies. There aren't that many movies to look at on the table. Well, I peeked and peered around him as best as I could and then yep, the devil came out. I asked him if he was going to buy all the movies. When he said no, I asked him if it would kill him to let someone take a look at the table. I swear I did not use a bad word. We got MoneyBall and One Day with Anne Hathaway.

Next we went to exchange a jade necklace BD got me for Christmas week. It was too expensive for how much I liked it. Not much. Well of course we could only exchange. Although BD did get a bit off the necklace and then I got a bit off one of the bracelets so it was okay. Got 2 bracelets and I have no clue if they are worth anything. I do not know diddly about Jade.

So then BD insisted we go to Marks&Spencer as they have clothes for fat people. Now really, I was regular normal size when I got here. People thought I weighed less than I did. Normal size U.S. 10/12. I am short, almost 5'4", really just a smidge under. So I am curvy and a little, maybe a lot top-heavy. So I have gained 15 pounds in the almost 2 years I have been here. So I would now call myself pudgy bordering on plump. I am not the hugest person out there. I tried on every damn coat in that crappy store and the only thing I can figure is every well off  cheap white bitch with a driver got there first. Because a size 10 in British sizes was the largest I could find. Then I found a little bigger and then a little more bigger. I don't know if those assholes know sizes but I finally found the last biggest ass coat in the store, and it was the only one not on sale. BD found me in tears, when I told him the size he said he would cut the tag out.

Now since I worked mostly with men I know size does not matter, and six inches is huge,  I am thinking that explains the British sizing. And BD says we can return it for wine and chutney. Because Mr. Bigger Bigger called and he has found me a coat. And since he has no sizes, only bigger bigger, this could work.

However, this tale gets sadder and sadder. We could not get a taxi to Mr. Bigger and Bigger. It seems that Friday night is the worst time ever to get a taxi. We walked from Marks&Spencer to the Portman Center and during that time we had at least 6 phony (or black taxis) stop and try to pick us up, 4 motorcyles trying to get us as customers, and one real taxi that offered to take us on a 14 rmb fare for 50 rmb (which we should have taken and then stiffed him) and the guy on a lawnmower disguised as a red metal cart.

I did however meet a sweet little girl who spoke English. Her mother only spoke Chinese but kept encouraging the girl to talk to me. She was 7. And when they gave up on the taxis she told me goodbye and we wished each other Happy New Year.

Friday, December 30, 2011

I should be as thin as when I first arrived

Because I laugh my ass off every day.

Meat counter at the Butchery

Based on the standing rib roast I went with Big Daddy for a return visit to the butcher. That is the cleanest place I have seen in China. I mean spotless. The butcher said it was a slow day, well we bought around 60 bucks U.S. worth and while we were there 2 Euro trash came in and proceeded to call everyone they knew. Don't think it will be slow for long. I got a decent red wine for around 7 bucks and that is unheard of. The butcher told me they sell a ton of it and I thought, yea well TJ's sells a bunch of 2 buck Chuck too. But really it was decent.

The taxi driver screwed us over taking the long way there, so I decided to walk for a bit and figure it out. We were on this street that I think is the new Fuxing Lu for clothes. I found a place that had coats in front. It was down a short path and so we went inside. I asked for bigger. The tried every coat in the joint on me. They were all too small. The 2 peeps running the store did get one coat zipped up. I could not move but they were both so pleased. The conversation was pretty much them speaking Chinese and my saying bigger, bigger. I did buy a sweater. It was normal sized it was just cut for roominess and having bosoms. 

The street ended at Shaanxi just a block or so up from the City Market, not bad for a walk and evidence the taxi was trying to convince us he had driven us to Beijing.

Funny of the day: Remember the recent job interview, well it was with a head hunter firm not the hiring company, they are on holiday. The head hunter firm was so impressed with Big Daddy they want to shop him around. In order to do this they need a picture of him. The man with a huge red scab on his nose from the grease splatter. There are no pictures of BD that do not display fun and frivolity as the old camera died and we left the card in the U.S. I am thinking bare minerals makeup.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Tales of the job search

If this were not so important to my future I would be rolling on the floor laughing.

I was really afraid Big Daddy would be offered this job as they "the company" did not balk at giving him the stars and the moon. And he got a huge splat of grease on his nose cooking breakfast this week. Right on the tip of the nose. Rudolf size. And of course this job is in China. Since it all seemed preposterous I just figured fate would hit me in the ass.

Nope this was another one of those famous jobs, we need a Senior Manager in Butchering, Baking and Candlestick making. And we prefer a doctorate in all 3, with 57 years of experience. And for all that we are kinda willing to pay you on the cheap as you would be hands on and save us hiring 12 more people.

It is was for a division of a company he has interviewed with 3 times this year. This time through a head hunter that is obviously not in the loop with corporate. Well all it cost was taxi fare and time, but really.

I will say someone in the group did admit maybe they asking for the impossible. How many times have I heard this. If you want a lap dog don't interview a Great Dane. If you want a steady girlfriend don't interview high end hookers. This reminds me of a co-worker who met a vegan on line, met him for dinner and ordered a burger. WTF, figure it out before you waste everyone's time.

Monday, December 26, 2011

We found a butcher

He has only been in our area for 2 weeks though he does have a shop in Pudong. The name is Yasmine's and Jason Mellink is the Master Butcher. Cell 150 0086 8415, address No. 93, North Xiangyang Road, Xuhui District, Shanghai.

Big Daddy got the best 2 rib standing roast, it was tasty and wonderful and cooked just great in the crappy counter top oven. Around 325 RMB and 4 pounds. There are leftovers galore. Yes, there will be soup at the end of the roast journey. They also have plump with real breasts chickens and assorted meats and sausages. They also have good wine at a decent price.

I told BD he should have taken a picture of the meat before we devoured it. Red meat is not something you eat or even see here on a regular basis.

Talked to Punkin Head today, made me cry, we miss him so much. He is having fun in Vermont and saw a movie, Hugo. He highly recommends it.

I need to get off my ass and get dressed and go out in the bowels of hell. Big Daddy witnessed a fight between a cat and a frog at the wet market recently. The proprietor of the fish stand rescued the frog, not sure if it was one of her sale items, and then offered BD prawns. He said it was the saddest thing he has seen in a while. His camera did not power up quick enough on the fabled real iPhone to capture the moment. No, he did not buy any prawns.

Sunshine fresh

Drying clothes.

My favorites are when they hang the shirts with the arms out like a scarecrow. Second favorite is the pajama type pants with one leg hanging down, kinda like they are really tired.

But the all time best of the best is the bra sized 32 AAA with a pair of bloomers an entire busload of Chinese could fit into.

Thank goodness I live in a better area, in the poorer neighborhoods they also hang their chicken out with the wash. Yes, that picture is from front yard.

At the bottom right is a caged area, one of the options, these are used as refrigerators and storage.

In our buildings I think 1% of the balconies are used for seating and plants.  I wipe down the balcony and the tables and chairs almost daily and they are filthy every time.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

The cleanest kitchen towels in China

The newest of the 3 washer/dryer units

Big Daddy is not as bad as I sometimes portray him. He does understand that I can take him out in a heartbeat and he likes it here at "The home momma made". So he made getting the appliance issue finished his weekend goal.

This is our third and perhaps final washer/dryer unit of the year. At least of the weekend.

Our kitchen towels have been washed 5 times, you know, testing the fucking washing machine.

The interim unit that was with us overnight did not dry. We paid 9 dollars for the manual to find this information.

The Chinese did not see a problem with this as they believe that sunlight is necessary to sterilize the filthy rags they tend to wear. They hang their clothes in their apartments where the sunlight can sterilize them. They move them frequently to follow the sun.

As there is seldom sun here, I find this entire routine baffling. Why do you put your freshly washed clothes out in the smoggy pollution?  Whatever, it is their damn country and raggedy ass clothes.

This new unit washed and dried our kitchen towels and they were actually warm when we fetched them from the unit. This was under 2 hours. We are now trying pants.

What a Christmas Eve.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair

One time when life was good Big Daddy sang me the entire score for movies. Yes, that was before he quit drinking. South Pacific and Oklahoma were his favorites. When he gave up drinking he seems to have given up singing.

Today I almost sang the lyrics from my unpublished musical "Watch out for the cement on the way off the Balcony". It is a Barbara Streisand, spelling please, type number, really huge and a lot of brass backing up the vocals.

If he survives it would be followed up with Shes Gone , by Hall and Oates. 

There are never any problems according to Big Daddy.

Because you know this is all my fault, I did not communicate the problems properly.

We have had a "sign language" since shit went down the toilet. Picture yourself standing with you arms up at your sides with your elbows bent. Kind of a W if you include your head in the picture. Then shake your hands right and left as if you are going mad. That is the signal that I am at my maximum for bullshit.

The hand signal also means, I am done, do not cross this line, do not proceed forward.

So as Big Daddy just does not get it, let me put it in writing, read it and weep sweetest. Because we are no longer in conversation mode.

When I tell you the worst piece of shit washer/dryer unit in Shanghai does not work properly, it means this machine does not work. It does not mean that the few times you half-ass use it and don't think the soapsuds on the floor are a big deal, it is not a big deal. It does not mean that when you half -ass do laundry it is okay, because you refuse to listen when I say I have to rewash the clothes 3 or 4 times after you leave on your travels.

And yes, I understand that you have never heard me complain about this issue. I am convinced you need your ears cleaned on the streets by the ear cleaning people.

So, yes Shemp came up tonight after my screaming fit and agreed the unit needs something, who knows what that fix may be. This is one of those things you just wait and see. Shemp had quite a bit to say, however it was all in Chinese.

Stuff I have not mentioned recently:

When we got home last night the key cards to the apartment where shut off again.

The butter at the hotel is no longer packets of  New Zealand butter, it is now "really yellow" in a flower shape, I think Chinese butter. I do not eat Chinese dairy products, that is just asking for problems. Remember this when I am on the IV Drip at the doctor's office next time.

A doctor called me on the way home, he was doing follow-up as I am a seriously ill patient (thankfully I did not know this) and the big question is when do I go back to the states. Since my insurance is lousy there I do not think that makes a dent in the big picture.

The best of the best, of course is the little problem of the escalator not working at the train station in Ning Hai, you have to carry your bags up and down 3 sets of  steep marble stairs. I bitched that the suppliers should come help us with the bags, and guess what, they did. They came and got BD's bags. I have noticed that BD is the hero and I am the concubine wanna-be trailing behind. The thing that pisses me off is BD just leaves me behind to struggle on my own.

If, and that is a big if, I ever travel with Mr. Important again I think I will just sit on my bags and wait and see if the asshole notices I am not in the car.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Driving Miss Daisy to drink

Chocolate Santa, Amay's Christmas present.

Yesterday was a roller coaster ride. Boredom followed by sheer fright.

The ride home to Shanghai did not commence until 4:30 PM. I sat in the lounge from check-out at 2 until about 4, taking very tiny sips of my wine. This was because I was monitoring liquids as I knew peeing on the way home was not an option. It is a 3 1/2 to 4 hour drive. We made one stop, for roasted corn on the cob and truck stop Christmas presents for Frenchey's family. He bought his wife a phony handbag from a truck stop in east lower hell.

The driver was a crazy man who has obviously never worked in automotive as he assumed all his equipment was far, far beyond 6 Sigma. The highlight of the trip was when we were drafting 2 huge trucks, we were straddling the white line and flashing our lights. The trucks parted like the Red Sea and we quickly scooted between them. We only used the lights once in a while, no one uses lights full time here, only when they feel the need.

When we got to Pudong Airport the car had barely stopped before Big Daddy snagged a taxi, this is kinda illegal for them to pick up at that spot, and we were on our way home in a flash. It seemed like the shortest ride ever and the driver was the best ever. He got a huge tip. He seemed sad and tired and I thought, well God blessed us with this driver and him with the easy and lucrative fare. So I gave him the Christmas tip hoping that maybe he would have at least an easier night and something nice for the weekend.

I was complaining to Tony at the hotel about the train ticket problem. He is so strange. He agreed with me and then asked if I knew about the train accident. And he said it as if that explained everything. I am thinking what, you make it harder to get tickets when the train crashes, for what purpose? Further conversation mentioned there were some really recent government inspections on this line and maybe they were not in compliance with the regulations. Tony said it should get better next year.

BD had another job interview Thursday morning, 5 AM China time. But the company is going into holiday shutdown so there will be no feedback until next year.

Punkin Head, you two stay safe and drive carefully. Love you both. Sorry I missed
your call.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, volume 82

The good is well, lets start with the ugly. It is Christmas and I think we should save the best for last.

The Ugly, these people are the stupidest asshats on the planets, in my humble opinion. I have not met every asshat, but of the asshats I have met they rank first. You used to could get a train ticket a week in advance. Then they changed it to 5 days in advance. Then 3 days. Now it seems to be whenever the bitch wants to sell the tickets, well it is her call. Maybe today, maybe tomorrow, maybe never. This is why I need to move home. Because at some point I am gonna blow. Sell me the ticket or don't sell me the ticket, just make up your fucking idiot mind. And this is not a white person thing, they do it to the locals too. The land of the high speed trains cannot sell tickets. I think we need to get Piers on this shit.

The supplier is driving us all back to Shanghai tomorrow as none of us can get train tickets. We all know this expense is going to go into the final bill from the supplier for this job, so the low cost country is not going to be low cost pretty soon.

That is okay, the China Daily-my fave for news-says China is going to teach Africa how to plant and harvest cotton. I recall a recent post where I told you that China is going to invent a machine to harvest cotton. Is this full circle or should I just drink more.

The Bad, remember the really important white guy from the dinner last night? He lives in this hotel. And he wanted to take us to dinner, thanks to BD for getting us out of that one. He is a pretentious-let us just say he is not my type. Hell to the no. And all the while he has 3 little Chinese girls fawning on him every minute while he is explaining they are all MBA's from China's most famous universities?

The Good, well when we walked inside the hotel, there was the tree. They light the tree at 4PM and we were a bit early for that so I was just checking out the lobby. Mr. Concierge came over and started chatting. I had to explain to him about the reindeer. That they were Santa's reindeer. That he got them in Lappland. I almost sent him to Badger's Blog, then I thought that might be cruel. Santa, reindeer, Badger talking about hiding in a reindeer carcass. No, I could not do that. 

Then I had to explain the presents. This guy was serious, how do the presents get there. Have you ever tried to explain Santa to someone about 30 years old? Yea, I did the whole nine yards, the cookies and the milk and the how when you are about 7 or 8 you know this is bullshit.

There is picture of Santa in the lobby and no one knew it was Santa.  I taught Santa. WTF.

If we are still here in the spring you can bet your ass I will have Easter Bunny books.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Big Dinner

Centerpiece at the head table.

It was different. Big Daddy said it was toned down from typical Chinese dinners. This was for the economic development of the area and indeed put on by local government. There were some important people and interesting information. Enough said about that. Speeches were not too long. First in Chinese and then in English.

We sat at the head table, our table had 16 seats and the other 3 tables 10 seats. Our supplier picked us up and escorted us to the party. He was not invited. There was assigned seating and we were next to a very important white guy who was next to the head dude. That and one other lower than us German guy made up the westerners.

The table settings were a compromise with western flatware and chopsticks and nuts and sauces across the top. There was a small wine glass with a dribble of red wine, an empty goblet and a glass of crazy wine.

My crazy wine.

The empty goblet was for your drink. Big Daddy got his Coke and I asked for red wine as the white important dude was drinking it. They bring it in a small carafe. The reason for the dribble in the glass soon became apparent. They toast with it and then drain the glass. Therefore only a sip. No one drank the crazy wine and the staff took them away while serving dinner. After the speech the movers and shakers went to each guest and said hello and gave each of us his business card. Then during dinner you take your wine glass and carafe and toast each person and make small talk. And then when you get happier you go around and chat some more and by this time you use whatever carafe is handy. No one got more than happy. Very happy maybe.

The Lazy Susan was around 7 feet across and glass.

Smokes on the Whirley Bird.

The food was very good, mostly sea food and duck. BD was careful about he put on my plate. Did not know what most of it was. Ate some soup that was good and it turns out it was shark's fin, who knew. They did bring some items on individual plates and individual plates of fruit at the end.

The end was the best, just when you wonder when it will end, everyone stands up and toasts and the head dude says the party is over. Woohoo, no guessing when you can sneak out.

Funny of the day: BD pokes me on the train and tells me the Chinese girl is taking pictures of herself with phony glasses on. I try not to stare as it is rude, but really, this chick had red and black plastic frames with no lenses. And she is admiring herself with the camera and snapping pictures. WTF.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Random Snippets once again

Working really hard to stay healthy for the big dinner. Sometimes it is harder to stabilize so I am really watching what I eat and when.

Just finished John Sanford's Shock Wave with Virgil Flowers. Love those books. This one was great.

As soon as the floors dry I need to pick out clothes and pack for the trip. Then a nice long bath. I don't know why I need to be so clean when I travel here, it is always filthy and disgusting.

Big Daddy seems to think a couple things could happen at the dinner. Maybe a banquet or maybe other customers from our supplier. Neither of us believe the gubmint is paying, they never do, so it will be interesting.

The demise of the N Korean leader is all over CNN, this will be interesting to see how it plays out.

Oh yea, I heard Sophie won on Survivor. Come on there is not much to watch and do here, it is just mind candy for passing the time. Anyway, what is it with these people? You could tell who was a loser and who was dangerous and they all just ignored the signs. Can't see the forest for the trees or just plain stupid ass people?

I found 2 new Blogs that look interesting, one is total snark (wish I could be her she is hilarious) and one that seems to follow architecture and furnishings, I will let you know if they are great.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Whirley Bird dinners

I have been told everything here is a 2000 year tradition. In reading the history of this country that is not possible, but then again neither is Santa Claus. This is the dinner tradition.

The Whirley Bird dinner is a very intense way to entertain customers. I have no knowledge of their personal celebrations.

The Chinese style restaurants have private rooms where the dinner is served. In the middle of the table is a huge Lazy Susan. The host orders for the table and they bring out the dinner in stages. Not sure about the stages. All the dishes are communal and everyone sticks their chop sticks in to get their own food. These are the same chop sticks you eat with. They do not follow the Japanese style of eating from one end and serving from the other end of the chop sticks. They serve rice at the end of the meal. Plain rice. Then fruit.

They also serve very, very weak tea, hot water and crazy wine. Crazy wine is like (and may be) sickly moonshine. My bottle, which I would never consider drinking, has some floaters in it and smells terrible. I know this because it leaked. They fill the crazy wine glasses and slam the drink continuously throughout the dinner. The goal is to get very drunk. They have a toast they holler out and slam the drink. And they toast everyone all night.

I know this stuff from Big Daddy. And he has never met with the gubmint (yes, I am spelling it that way for a reason) so this dinner may be a tad different. I will try for some pictures, I really do not know the protocol for this area. BD did tell me to order a Coke, fill up the glass and take tiny sips to keep it full, when a glass has room they pour in the crazy wine.

So you can see why a Wasp with a weak stomach and no adventure in her soul was hoping to miss this highlight. I feel a BLT on wheat toast is an abomination. 

The name Whirley Bird came from an event in the past. Some friends well  known as cheaper than cheap asked some of us to help them move. They said they would order pizza and furnish drinks. Well we all busted ass moving them and when we were tired, dirty and hungry they put a bag of potato chips on the Lazy Susan. You had to twirl the Lazy Susan to reach in and get your chips and that baby never stopped whirling. And the hosts decided that we did not need pizza, the chips were enough. Maybe I should write an entire post about these people, they were unbelievable.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

There is such a thing as too popular

Another first, the "gubmint" peoples want to take us to dinner for Christmas and New Year. Not sure whose New Year. There is no way you can turn down this kinda shit. The guy that is assigned as the messengar is really nice and we can't make him look bad.

And there is one of you out there that knows this is gonna be whirley bird dinner. I was so certain I could get out of here with no whirley birds. I am also certain there is a protocol for sitting and don't have a clue and I am not drinking the crazy wine. And Big Daddy does not drink. This should be interesting.

Shit, are we supposed to take these fucks gifts?

Well at least I have a place to wear the 999 Roses.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Looks good to me

Counter top looks fine.

5 hours including lunch and quite a few Chinese conversations with "counter top" Shemp and we are done. I guess. No idea on how long til I can use it, yes I asked Shemp and he told me, just not in English. He is making a phone call however. I don't know to whom.

3 conversation included the need for me to cover the appliances, including the leaky coffee maker. Finally I caught on and got a towel from the bathroom. Shemp was happy. Then we moved the stuff out and I scattered it about the apartment. This was because the electric sander made quite a mess. Shemp never let go of his sander, he took it to lunch. A man and his tools, he probably had to sign out for it.

Well the kitchen window is wide open, not sure why and I am waiting to see when the ayis show up to clean this mess. Then maybe I can clean the kitchen to white people standards and maybe have lunch. Or dinner as this is already past lunchtime.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Another chapter in the counter top saga

I am now quite sure this is phony granite.

Phony granite amazes me as it is more expensive than real granite here. The 2 foot hunk of whatever material it is came loose. It was not really heavy but quite awkward to deal with. I had no place to put it and I did not want it to fall and break, especially on my feet.

On closer inspection it also appears it has been repaired in the past. Hmm, how many Shemps have vaulted up on this sink I wonder.

So I sent Big Daddy up to the Concierge with the broken hunk of counter top. Sean seemed amazed that we did not want to keep in a place of honor in the apartment. I have an appointment at 9 AM Wednesday for whatever they are going to do. BD also told Sean that in order to save me throwing cell phones down the toilet, and avoiding a toilet repair, he need to get the ayis under control. And get them to change the towels properly.

In the couple years we have been here we are seeing a pattern. There is some rule that all monies owed to workers somehow has to be paid in full in coordination of the Chinese New Year. This is when people typically quit or change jobs. Huge turnover and this year it is around January 23 I think. As it is nearly impossible to fire someone here employees can get away with practically anything.

My long awaited package from Punkin Head arrived and had to be picked up at the Post Office. It contained my new AMEX and I was getting concerned about the card. It also contained 2 birthday cards and some movies from The Ladies collection. Last night we watched Fried Green Tomatoes, I love that movie.

This is gonna get ugly

I am hopeful I have not lost my sense of humor. I seem to be a bit cranky. Big Daddy is pissing me off, he is taking the stupid pills again. Yes, we have them in America too, men don't take them regularly, just when they need to feel stupid. Yesterday as I was getting a gallon of oil on my toenails and then having them wrapped in plastic film he asked if I wanted to stroll down to the bakery. Then he told me we had new movies, which we don't have. Then he washed kitchen towels this morning instead of last night. Kitchen towels take 4 to 5 hours in the machine. He is on thin ice here.

I am giving him a chance to redeem himself.

The Shemps did not appear for the kitchen counter top repair. I waited for the ayi invasion before I got pissed. Actually the ayis pissed me off. First they dropped everything in the hall. It sounded like all hell broke loose. Then they started shouting at each other. Then they started talking on the phones. Well, when the one ayi got a call in the kitchen and I could hear the caller, I did have to say something. I was nice, I did not swear and scream, I just told her no phone. That will be on BD's list of things to do, ask the manager if he pays the ayis to clean or talk on the phone. I mean really, they get out of hand and you have to say something. They have brought their children when they clean. They have brought husbands and boyfriends, and brothers. Not any more.

Maybe I should have titled this the bitch is back.

So anyway, I called BD and asked him to inquire about the counter top with the management. He talked to Sean. Sean and Brian are the managers and I can't remember which is the big boss. Sean then called me. It seems the counter top cannot be repaired for a few days. They don't know when. They don't have the right shit to fix the counter top. He suggested that I just sit in the apartment and wait for them to show up. I suggested he fuck himself. He suggested that waiting was a great idea. I suggested we get the leasing company involved and then I told him he had given me a Chinese headache. As we were quite far apart in our negotiations I ended the call.

So now BD is in charge of saving the day, my sanity, and Sean's hide. And maybe that ayi's cell phone as I may flush it down the toilet the next time I have to hear that bullshit.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Shemp returns

The spot of ledge on which Shemp hunched down to fix the heating unit. That is our kitchen window. Pic taken from the back balcony.

Well I am pretty sure we have heat. Shemp was gone when we returned from our mani and pedi experience. And shortly thereafter an ayi arrived to mop. And she emptied a waste can. Actually she did quite a bit which only means this is worse than I think it is. And she discovered the tub that does not drain and is making a phone call. Woohoo.

The worst part of the entire mess was Shemp once again refused the step stool and used his own methods of getting out the window onto the ledge. That involved vaulting onto the sink and counter. Which resulted in the one piece granite counter breaking/cracking in 2 places. Which of course made the sink dicey. You know, staying in place.

Well the Shemps are supposed to replace the counter top tomorrow while the ayis are doing their regular cleaning. This may require stronger drink than my wine. Or more wine than I have.

Well they just left and I pressed some special tea on the ayi, she acted like she did not want to take it but I persisted and she relented. She did a damn fine job. Tub is now draining properly.

Toes are pretty and Big Daddy is ready to tackle the kitchen with his well massaged hands and arms.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Out and About

I finally left the apartment on Saturday to get my hair done. No problems and the hair looks good. Stress makes it worse and worrying if you are going to have an episode is stressful. I almost froze to death though. It was mid-forties and felt like 30 degrees. That would be F not C.

We ended up coming back home to get my full length fur before the afternoon. I have never worn that fur when the temps were above freezing. Everyone seems to think the humidity makes it feel colder. And here when there is cold there is wind.

We just wandered around and I found a new throw blanket for 3 dollars. When we got home I made Big Daddy throw it in the washer as we found it in rather dodgy conditions. Came out fine.

Shemp came last night for the no heat problem. I am sure this will become a huge issue as the first thing they did was to offer us another apartment. Then Shemp called his buddy. 2 Shemps do not make a quorum. This morning Shemp came back and is sitting out on this tiny ledge tearing apart the heating unit. I can't get a picture, I will improvise later.

BD did get Shemp to fix the chain on the front door. When we were leaving the apartment about 6 months ago he opened the door with the chain connected and it broke. As he used no extra force I was not worried about the safety factor, so I never rushed to get it repaired.

This afternoon I have a pedicure and I need to get ready, and I have no heat here. Hmm, could be interesting.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


Well I bucked up and investigated one of the medications I was not familiar with, Dicetel. I also found quite a bit of information on Irritable Bowel Syndrome and there is more information available than I found a few years ago. Dicetel does not seem too bad when you weigh the symptoms against the "what may happen". When I was a child they had me on phenobarbital and Donnatal, I was so upset when they put our poodle on the same meds for seizures. Then a 10 or so years ago Bentyl, which did nothing. The next was I think Velnorm which I am positive almost killed me.

The only problem with the Dicetel so far is you are supposed to take it with food and I just cannot eat right now. A piece of cheese is about it, and I don't think that is enough. Or perhaps it is my phobia about taking pills. I just hate it. Yuck. And it always scares me when they say you should not take the pills lying down. First, who could? Don't you have to sit up to drink the water? Second, what is the problem, does this shit need gravity to work?

There were a lot of stories on one site of people's experiences with IBS and I have to admit, I did laugh my ass off. It is a terrible disease and very hard to control, but when it is not you, it is hilarious what people go through to hide it. Or what happens when they can't.

I know stress makes mine worse. And eating properly is different for everyone but the main key seems to be eating smaller portions more often. And that is my failure here, access to what I can eat and eating too much when I actually see real food. I have to learn to be satisfied by small portions of nothing with a treat once in a while.

The food poisoning seems to have run its course, so now it is just getting back on track. I wish I could get real yogurt here, and real whole wheat bread.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Home Maintenance

Big Daddy left for Ning Hai and I can't blame him.

I need to call Shemp and frankly I am not up to it. The tub is not draining properly and the knob to turn on the sprayer is not working properly. I have to use my Leatherman to use it. Same knob problem in the shower and I am not using the Leatherman in the shower. And something is not right with the washer/dryer machine. It does not want to do the fake drying cycle.

I would say I am 50% better. Doctor said it was very serious so I must be at medium now. I forgot the instructions on one medicine and I need to look it up on the Internet as everything except the name is in Chinese. This is always a bad idea for me, I get diseases from just hearing about them, you know the hypochondria thing. Could call the doctor but that ordeal is as frustrating as getting Piers off the air, just never works.

That reminds me, someone left a comment on the last Blog about recycling and Green credits. When I was working I was called to a meeting at Plant Loco to give them all the information on how we recycled our product and where did we send it. I told them a corn field. It was a non-recycle item. Those idiots had stored 3 years of this crap and claimed credits on their recycling efforts. Just another example of my tax dollars down the shitter.

I apologize for the content here, just not up to breezy chit chat.

Oh yea, I am reading James Patterson and unknown writer's The Christmas Wedding. Almost at the end and it is starting to feel like a Nicholas Sparks book. WTF. Has anyone heard of James Lee Burke? I need a new author.

More gifts for me

Our free Christmas tree, we sprang for the twinkle lights at 3 bucks a pop.

If you order from Mealbay, a restaurant delivery service, on Christmas tree Saturday you get a free tree with ornaments. A full meter of holiday cheer.

I also got food poisoning, at least that is what the doctor thinks at this point. Yes, I ended up back at the doctor's office for another go-round with the IV treatment and a shot in the hiney. The good news is that bright red blood is better than dark ucky blood. I now have enough medication to start my own store. And a thermometer. They are hard to find here.

I also have a new doctor. My old one must have escaped because the new one did not know who he was. She has only been here 2 weeks so she must be his replacement. She also recommended Gatorade for severe dehydration and a gluten free diet for the IBS. I asked her very politely in non Nola Rice language if she had lost her fucking mind. Where in the hell does she think I can find that stuff in China. She laughed and agreed. She did tell me to lay off the ginger ale. But when you are that sick, there is nothing like ginger ale, just wished it could have been Vernor's.

So momma is having a very quiet week.