From 8 PM until 1 AM it seems like I am doing a lot of things but I never feel rushed or pressured. Along with eating dinner, posting my blogs, responding to those who have commented on my blogs, checking out a few web sites like groupons for special dining out coupons or mypoints.com I am usually corresponding with Mary and/or Sharon or taking a quick look at face book or like this past week, Memphis Chuck is ‘hacking’ (with my permission LOL) into my computer to get rid of the many mistakes I make which in turn slows the machine down.
While doing all that I am watching TV shows such as “Suits”, “Graceland” which one of our resident has a role in, “The Bridge”, “True Blood” and /or “Taxi Brooklyn” not to forget “Big Brother” as I wait for Zach to be kicked off. At 11PM it is the late night news to see if I have won the lottery or power ball and having to hear about the latest killings, war, child abduction and animal abuse.
11:30 PM the TV goes off and I relax for an half hour playing Free Cell, Hearts and Bingo before walking outside for another half hour just to watch the stars and moon and taking a walk to The Point which at this time I have all to myself feeling as if I own the whole world. Then back home, get into bed and read books until the eyes won’t stay open anymore.
What makes this just another special day was that I woke up in the morning and had another day of life. Some days may be better or worse than others but as long as I wake up in the morning I am ready for anything and grateful to be faced by Mother Nature once again. She never stops giving and even in her furious days there is magic in seeing what she can and does accomplish. She can test us like no one else can and then all of a sudden knock us over with a rainbow or a sunset.
Give me that chance of waking up in the morning, walking out of my dark bedroom into the light from outside and I know it is just another special day.
THE ONLY BLACK EGRET OF THE WHITE BUNCH THAT COMES OUT AFTER THE RAIN.
It was 1 PM, all the calls made, all the emails answered and time to face the world. I took the Hollywood Reporter, the Time Magazine and Entertainment Weekly, all devoted to the death of Robin Williams. I was going down to The Point where I would read them and in between talk to a few neighbors sitting there or passing by. If there was any one spot in Fort Lauderdale that Mother Nature shined it was here. Boats were docked all over Karen Bay while those on paddleboards or being towed by boats in rubber rafts would pass by. There would be the occasional fish jumping out of the water, a bird flying by or a plane leaving a jet stream as they passed by.
Because of medicine I was taking I wasn’t suppose to be out in the sun too long or go swimming in the pool but I would now and then even though in the summer in South Florida you don’t jump into the water, not even the Atlantic ocean, to cool off as the water temperature is usually higher than the air temperature but just floating on your back, looking up at the sky and get lost in my surroundings.
After 2-3 hours of pure relaxation disturbed only by the negative news regarding the world situation and the sadness of the death of Robin Williams not to mention briefer recollections of Lauren Bacall who personified a special time in Hollywood history it was time to go back to the apartment. It was just another special afternoon in a special life treasured by me for each minute.
Between the hours of 5-7 have almost become a ritual for me. I would sit at my computer desk which overlooked the windows and I would watch the beginning of the sunset or, as was a given in the summer time, the rains coming down, watering all of the fauna that surrounded the buildings making the green sparkle as the lowering sun played its colors.
I would go downstairs for my mail around 5:30-6, talk to a few neighbors as we waited for Mark, the mailman, to distribute the eagerly awaited letters from friends and family, if they snail mailed anymore, and the not so eagerly waited bills and junk mail. I would go back upstairs to watch Diane Sawyer and the evening news followed by Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy. If it was Wednesday evening I would have to get things ready for Thursday when Allen would take me shopping and take me to run my errands plus we would go out for lunch. I would also bring out my high blood pressure kit plus my INR home testing kit, both of which I would use Thursday morning and then call in the results.
Now just another special day was turning into another special evening.
I came out of my pitch dark room into the brightness of the living room. I looked out the window and Mother Nature was providing us with another sunny, probably hot and humid day and for now not even a wisp of a breeze. I got the Sun-Sentinel and Wall Street Journal newspapers from right outside my door and took a quick glimpse out of the outer door looking over the walkway–it was quick because I was nude and didn’t want to excite my neighbors. (Yeah, like they would even notice a 78 year old nude man!)
I brought the papers, in quickly glancing over the headlines, and then took them apart section by section in the order I wanted to read them. Went into the kitchen to put the water on for coffee, poured my glass of orange juice and took an inhale of my Advair. Went into the bathroom, brushed my teeth washed my face, back into the kitchen, drank my juice, made my coffee and brought it over to the computer desk and sort of got my day mapped out though there wasn’t anything I HAD to do. I did have to call about a prescription, order a couple of token gifts to be sent out, one for a birthday and one for a wedding anniversary.
As always I sat at my desk for a few minutes and just looked out the window and the special effects Mother Nature made just for me. The sun was high against the pale blue of the sky with a wisp of a white cloud here and there. And wherever I look there were many shades of green trees and multicolored flowers all over with my eyes finally falling on the water, and boats on it, flowing in the canal from the bay.
I turned on the computer, read and responded to the email, looking for the one from Gateway Chuck with a compliment regarding something I had written. It had almost become an addiction and I looked forward to it every day. After that I checked out Broadway showbiz.com, talkinbroadway/allthatchat.com, 2 blogging sites, a couple of face book pages, the New York Post, the New York Times and then looked over the drafts of posts and decided which ones I wanted to post and where.
By the time I got all the above done it was time to prepare what I was going to have for dinner. I made up the salad of Romaine lettuce, tomatoes, a chopped onion and for tonight blue cheese. Then I made a hoagie shaped beef patty which I put on a bed of mixed vegetables and rice topped with sharp shredded cheddar cheese. With the evening meal all set it was time for lunch so I mad a grilled cheese and tomato sandwich with an apple for dessert and a glass of cold water which I added some lemon juice and Sweet ‘N Low. Sat down at the dining room table with lunch and the papers getting ready for the rest of just another special day.
iT DOES RAIN ONCE IN AWHILE
“Calvary” opens with a man in the confessional booth telling the priest that he had been abused for 5 years when a child by a priest and since he is dead he will kill the priest he is talking to now as killing a bad priest would not make as strong a statement as killing an innocent one. The confessor tells the priest that he will give him a week, until next Sunday, to get his house in order before he kills him.
As we meet each villager, and watch their reaction to and with the priest, we soon forget about the killing and who may have said the confession and issued the threat except for each day of the week appearing on the screen.
Father James, played by Brendan Gleeson, joined the priesthood after his wife died and his adult daughter Fiona , played by Kelly Reilly, feels he left her behind. As he makes his parish rounds we get to meet citizens of the town, some who could have been the confessor. There is the butcher, Chris O’Dowd, who’s wife, Oria O’Rourke. has encounters with the immigrant lover Isaach De Bankole. We enter the home of the police inspector, Gary Lydon, who is in the middle of having sex with a male prostitute, Owen Sharpe. We meet an Atheist doctor, Aidan Gillen, and an extremely wealthy man, Dylan Moran, who thinks nothing of urinating on a million dollar painting he has bought. Along with these citizens we also meet a younger priest, David Wilmot, the Bishop David McSavage, a French woman, Marie-Josee Croze, who just lost her husband and an American writer M. Emmet Walsh. Last, but certainly not least, there is a very moving scene between Gleeson and a cannibalistic murderer,played by his son Domhnall Gleeson.
There is a lot of humor in the exchanges between the priest and those who are challenging his convictions and those of the Catholic church, but as one tells him. “You are just too sharp for this parish,” which turns out to be the truth.
The screenplay by John Michael McDonagh, who also directed, goes into faith, forgiveness and the many weaknesses of man, and woman, without, obviously, picking sides. He has also filmed the picture in the county Sligo which shows off the lush greens of Ireland along with the cliffs and coasts surrounding it.
Each cast member gets a scene to stand out and they meet the challenge but it is Brendan Gleeson and Kelly Reilly, who intrigued me in the TV series “Black Box”, that command your attention during the whole film.
“Calvary” is getting 5 star reviews but I left thinking that maybe if I was Irish or Catholic or a priest, a murderer or a sinner I might have liked it better. Being a sinner I did appreciate much of the dialogue and as a movie lover I certainly admired the acting but the bottom line is that I can’t recommend the film.
By the way there are two very violent scenes and the last 2 minutes of the film, if I understood it correctly, was a stunner.
On July 22, 1973, I boarded the plane from Buenos Aires to Iguassu Falls ( or spelled/called Iguazu Falls, Iguazú Falls, Iguassu Falls, or Iguaçu Falls) and most of the first half of the trip after landing there is still a blur in my mind and due to circumstances very little was written in my letter that day.
All I can recall is landing at a one airplane airport, a lot of scurrying around and all of a sudden the entire place is empty, no one around and I am there all alone! The Itinerary said that a car would pick me up and take me to the hotel but after waiting 2 hours, and no car showing up, I looked for a phone but there wasn’t any—heck there wasn’t even a reservation desk! I really didn’t know what to do but I figured another plane would have to show up sooner or later even if it was only the plane I was scheduled to leave on the next day.
It was about 3:30 and I really don’t remember how long it was before my ‘rescuers’ came along. A couple in their 20s, from California, were backpacking their way across South America and they had just come from the jungle and were on their way to the Falls. Using their map we eventually came to a place where we caught a bus, then another bus, then a cab, then a ferry and finally another bus eventually getting to the hotel. I can just imagine coming all this way on my own–no way!
I invited the couple to have dinner with me and offered to get them a room for the night, which, if I had seen what the rooms were like first, I am sure they would have said no. I just looked up the hotel on google and 41 years later it is nothing like it was when I was there! My room was smaller than any room I have ever seen in a hotel. There was a curtain around a section of the floor and a drain which turned out to be the shower. The bed was a cot!
After we were all checked in I met the couple in the dining room and according to my notes the restaurant was beautiful. I was tired, hungry and absolutely amazed that I had remained so calm even though I faced the possibility of being in the middle of the jungle all night before the couple came along. Along with everything else it was cold and misty outside and so was my room!
The restaurant was pure French service and there was a trio playing rock ‘n roll Portuguese style. I had a scotch and soda, hearts of palm soup, assado (pot roast with a ½ pound mashed potatoes, vegetables and a platter of rice), bread, Bazillion coffee with 2 heaping teaspoons of real sugar and a dessert which seemed to be a combination of flan custard and rum like cake costing all of $2.70!! Funny but I made notes on all of this but nothing about the American couple. I just noticed all my notes were written on the back of 2 long laundry lists.
I was up at 10 AM to have breakfast and wait for the car to take me to the Falls. The couple had left leaving me a very sweet Thank You note but no way of getting in touch with them!.
My final note of this trip to Iguassu Falls is that I don’t remember the trip to the actual falls or did I make any notes regarding it–now that is strange!
On to Sao Paulo.
“Gay”–Yes I am gay in the sense that I am happy, positive, a winner in many ways and because I am Gay! Did I choose it? Was I born Gay? Who knows? Who cares? Being Gay has given me a life I would never had known otherwise. Yes being Gay has its downside but any life has that. I have met fantastic people, done great things, been to astonishing places all due to the fact that I was/am Gay. There is nothing negative about being Gay when I say I am Gay because I am one of the most positive, contented, happiest people you will ever meet and being Gay has contributed to that.
“Man”–Ah what can I say? I don’t have ‘that time of the month’. I don’t have to go through pregnancy. I don’t have to have a hysterectomy or go through menopause. I didn’t get less pay or have to do the ‘cooking, cleaning,’ or ‘take care of a man’. Even today when women have it better than their mothers and grandmothers had it how much better do women have it today than men do? And best of all I don’t have to put up with men!!!
So yes I am old, I am poor, I am Gay and I am a man and proud of being each. Yes I have had rough times being old, Gay, poor and a man but not as many great times I have had being who I am.
????? Was 32, had been invited to
Argentina to work with the theatre 4 years
previously and he loved his job, the city and the people so he decided to stay and was starting to begin an adult theatre importing plays from New York and London. As we talked we ate and we also drank 2 large bottles of beer though I wasn’t a beer drinker. We had a lettuce, tomato and onion salad, a huge cut of baby beef, a full dish of spaghetti and fried Provolone both for less than $10! (Remember this was 1973!)
When we left the restaurant we took a walk along Corrientes Avenue, referred to as Broadway of BA where there were theatres, cabarets and tango palaces. We stopped at one of the latter places and I couldn’t believe how noisy it was, mainly with the customers encouraging the dancers and musicians. Years later I would see “Tango Argentina” on Broadway and it was no where as nitty-gritty as it was in that club. Everyone from the dancers to the bartenders to the customers exuded sex!
I invited him back to the hotel and though it was around midnight the boulevard was jammed packed with thousands, not hundreds, of people coming and going. As we passed a bookstore he said “Wait a minute,” and in about 5 minutes he came out with what was obviously a book all wrapped up and he handed it to me, telling me to open it tomorrow. He had bought me a Spanish-English dictionary to use in Sao Paulo and Caracas.
Did I mention that he was 6’2” and weighed 138 pounds!!!! Talk about skinny! I just remembered–don’t ask me how–but his name was Germaine! Tomorrow was to be my last day in Buenos Aires so we agreed for him to pick me up and to go out to another special restaurant for lunch called “El Palacio de las Papa Fritas”. There is still a restaurant by that name in Buenos Aires but I don’t know if it is the same. (There are also 2 restaurants by that name in Miami today!) I had a T-Bone steak, a plate (I mean A PLATE!) of Papas Fritas–French fries–salad, tea, large bottle of beer and an apple pancake glazed with syrup for $3.50!!
We took a bus ride to “La Boca”, the Italian section, and then a train to La Palmero and returning to my hotel (don’t recall ever seeing his place–was he single or???) for a siesta and then a local gay bar and dinner. I told Germaine it would have to be an early night as my plane left early the next day. We had a nice evening and said goodbye ‘after’ LOL
Buenos Aires was my kind of city–it was a place for night life–fun–’night people’– good restaurants–tender beef–I wish I had more time here but I didn’t. When I left it was raining and the temperature was about 40 degrees. I was sad to go.
Little did I know what Hell I was going into!