So I spent my vacation (including my 49th birthday) in Labrador, taking the coastal ferry to tiny little towns and seeing icebergs and whales , though fewer of each than I'd hoped for. No narwhal, but they were unlikely to begin with. And, alas, no aurora due to cloud cover. However, I spent a few days on either side of the trip in St. John's, Newfoundland and a boat trip from nearby Bay Bulls offered up a humpback whale and several hundred puffins. The collective noun for those birds is "an improbability of puffins" and I can't think of a more apt term. They won't replace albatross as my favorite bird category, but they're definitely high up on the "fun things to watch" list. I do not wish to speculate on what it means that I like birds that have trouble taking off. My goal is to get the travelogue (and the overdue one from my Midwestern trip of the summer) done by the end of the month.
I came home and left immediately on a business trip to Albuquerque. I was rather exhausted, especially as the flight there was delayed about an hour by weather, but there were enough things that irritated me at the meeting I was at to keep me awake. I was pleased with the hotel I stayed at (the Hilton Garden Inn by the airport) and it was good to go somehwere with good Mexican food. The flight back was actually about 15 minutes early, so I suppose the overall travel experience wasn't too terrible.
As for other things, as I mentioned in a brief note from St. John's, the appraisal on the condo came in low and the sellers wouldn't reduce their price, so the deal fell through and I ended up back at square one. (By the way, is there actually any board game which has a square one? It seems that there must be, but I can't actually think of one.) I went out today with my realtor and looked at 5 places, any of which would do nicely. I am trying to make up my mind now. I liked one (well, actually two of three in a particular complex) a great deal, but the complex has fewer amenities than another one (where the place the deal fell through on is, but which also has a new offering I liked quite a bit) so seems not to offer quite as much value for the money. It's a question of how much a bay window in the living room and a jacuzzi tub in the master bath are worth versus a complex with an exercise room and on-site management to accept packages. I will think it over tonight and, somehow, make a decision.
By the way, I was rather out of touch with news during my trip. The most obvious celebrity death was Pavarotti, but the more interesting ones were Madeleine L'Engle (author of A Wrinkle in Time, a children's book I like less than almost everyone seems to think I should, largely because it seems preachy to me) and Broadway (and television) actress Miyoshi Umeki, who had the misfortune to work in the era before more color blind casting. The really interesting news story I missed most of is Steve Fossett's disappearance. Which reminds me that I know a fair amount about Ambrose Bierce and Amelia Earhart, but I've never really understood just what Judge Crater did other than disappearing. I'll have to look that up one of these days.
Copyright 2007 Miriam H. Nadel