Losing a friend to suicide over $2000

3 Nov

I am absolutely devastated at the fact that a very dear friend of mine committed suicide.  There is a saying that suicide is the most selfish act anyone can do, but, I don’t personally think that’s true.  I think suicide is the act of someone so hopeless that there isn’t a person they can turn to in the world that would actually help them.  If you disagree with me.  Here is the real scenario of my friend.

She got herself into a real financial mess, and, was living pay check to pay check.  She got behind in rent and other bills, and, owed about $2000, she was facing eviction and no place to go, she lost her job, she had no income.  She called everyone she knew, but, no one would help her, regretfully, not even me.  Had I known that $2000 would have saved her life, I would have given her that and more.

So the next time someone asks you for financial help whether it is $5 or $5000 please stop and think before you flat out turn that person down.  Would you want to see your friend or family member kill themselves for getting into debt for a lousy $2000?  Wouldn’t you do everything to help to prevent this from happening?

My grief has no boundaries right now.  I am angry at myself and I am hurt and confused, and, I have to learn to accept that I contributed to her decision that life was no longer worth living.  That she had no true friends who came through for her in her time of need.  My life is for ever changed, I will never be the same.  The lesson I learned will never leave me, and, I will never be so quick to tell someone no.

If this post changes just one persons mind besides my own then I will feel like I have done something worthwhile in telling this story.  If you are thinking about suicide please take every step not to do and call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline  1-800-273-8255 for help.

I will never be the same. Never.  My friend will live on in my mind and heart, and, may God forgive me for failing the friendship test in the worst possible manner.  I was wrong and I know it.

Fall 2015 in NYC: What’s not to love

23 Oct

Well, yes, I’ve been a bad girl.  I haven’t kept up my New Year’s resolution to be more faithful about posting in my blog.  Shame on me, but, I do have a busy life, and, it can be hard to find the time and energy to post.  Regardless, I am going to make more of an effort.  I know I say that every single time, but, I do mean it.  I just have to execute it!

As Meg Ryan says in “You’ve Got Mail” don’t you love Fall?  Actually the exact quote is “Don’t you love New York in the Fall?”  Gary and I have so much going on from what promises to be a fantastic Halloween party at our friend Amanda Cumming‘s place to getting ready for Thanksgiving and Christmas, and, New Year’s Eve.  Oh sure, some cynic out there will say the leaves in Central Park haven’t changed yet, and, the weather’s been too warm, but, it doesn’t change what time of year it is and that’s the part to focus on.  I mean, sure, I’d love to see more explosive Fall colors in the trees and foliage, but, and, admittedly, it is a bit bizarre to see people ice skating at Rockefeller Center with short sleeve shirts but, it is such a busy and fun time of year, I don’t know why I used to hate it so much.

Rockefeller+Center+Ice+Skating+Rink+Open+Winter+xP6KhX3Q32zx

Maybe things will start feeling more like Fall next weekend.  After all, what’s Halloween without the crunch, crunch, crunch of leaves as you walk on the sidewalk?  And, with the opening of the Bryant Park Holiday Village next Friday (October 30th) and the New York Marathon on Sunday, November 1st.  Maybe the weather will catch up with the calendar and things will start to feel more like true Fall.

Australia and saying so long to a dear friend

23 Jun

Yes, I’ve been a bad girl and haven’t blogged in ages, but, I did just spend a month in Australia.  My dear friend, my best friend the past several years, Elena just moved to Sydney where her husband Paul grew up.  It was a bitter sweet trip.  I could stay in Australia forever — the people are wonderful, the beautiful weather, and, clean!  It puts NYC or just about any city in the USA to shame!  Check out some of my photos from the trip!

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All good things come to an end: Downton Abbey ending after Season 6

26 Mar

No, I wish I was kidding but, it’s unfortunately true.  Downton Abbey will end after Season 6.  In all honesty, when Maggie Smith made the announcement she wouldn’t return after Season 6, I thought perhaps it might be the show’s final season — especially after the grumblings about ending the program after Season 5.  However, it’s no less depressing knowing that one of my favorite shows ever will no longer be something to look forward to on Sunday evenings.

This also reduces my television viewing to Project Runway (and it’s various off shoots like Project Runway All Stars) and a handful of cooking and PBS shows I watch. Sigh.

I miss the good old days when there were so many good shows to watch, you didn’t know how to pick just one.  Remember those days when shows like Full House and Family Matters were in prime time?

And, now we wait. Months and months. It also gives us far too much time to contemplate what’s going to happen with our favorite Downton characters.  Will Daisy leave Downton to go live with her Father-in-law and make something of herself besides an assistant cook or will there be a surprise like Alfred coming back to marry her?  Maybe Daisy will team with Patmore and they’ll do something together.  Or will Mrs. Patmore will enjoy retirement in her new cottage?  Will Tom really leave Downton for Boston?  Will Mary ever stop being so obnoxious to Edith?  Will Edith ever catch a break and find some type of happiness with a man?  And what about Ana and Mr. Bates?  Will they both be cleared of murder?  And what of Mr. Mosley and Ms. Baxter?  Are they finally going to bring their relationship into the open and declare their love?  And, how about dear Mrs. Hughes and Mr. Carson, we will actually get so see their wedding?  What about Mrs. Crawley?  Will it be Dr. Clarkson or Lord Merton or will Isobel decide to stay a widow and continue to be friend and companion to Granny?  What are the fates of Lord and Lady Grantham? Will Downton survive??

We’ll just have to see what Julian Fellows’ brilliant mind has in store for all of us.

Heading to Australia, very excited!

12 Mar

It’s with both excitement and sadness I blog today that my husband Gary and I are heading to Australia in a few weeks with our good friend Paul and Elena Harris.  The excitement is due to the fact this is the second time we’ve been invited to Australia, the first time was for their (Paul and Elena’s) wedding, but, unfortunately this trip will not have as happy of an ending as the last.  You see, Elena and Paul are moving back to Australia permanently and, short of Gary getting transferred there, I’m not sure when I’ll see Elena and Paul again.

Elena was my first real friend in New York, and, throughout the years we grew as close as sisters.  And, I know she’s only an instant message away, but, it just isn’t the same as being to see someone on a daily basis.  Of course, I am happy for them.  Elena doesn’t have any family in the United States to speak of, and, Paul’s family are all in Australia, so, I do understand their need and desire to be with them.  And, given the fact they want to start a family soon, and, knowing the horrible education system in the United States without a doubt this is the best move they can possibly make.  And, now Gary and I have an excuse to visit Australia far more frequently.  The only thing I am dreading is the incredibly long, tedious flights.

And, so I’ve been flight shopping today hoping by hope that somehow, some brilliant engineering genius found a way to cut down the travel time, but, sorry to say… No… Still no hope for a non-stop flight from New York to Sydney.  So it looks like we’ll do the Los Angeles thing for a day or two, and, get a non-stop from there.  Not that it’s a walk in the park from LA to Sydney.  Far from it — roughly 15 hours.  The only half way good news is that the flights leave late at night, so, hopefully with the aid of a sleeping pill, it will at least be tolerable.

One thing for sure — I need to see and play with koalas and roos during our visit down under.  Oh I’m sure an Aussie or two are rolling their eyes at that comment, but, for someone like it me, they’re very much a novelty!  And, I can’t just wait to go say G’day!

More snow, good day to hibernate

5 Mar

The winter of 2015 has turned out to be a snowy one.  Granted, NYC is no where near what Boston has suffered through, but, it’s still maddening to look out the window, and, once again see snow.  I don’t know what it is about snowy days, but, I always want to curl up, under a blanket and just veg.  And this isn’t anything new for me, even as a kid, I’d rather build a tent or a fort and cozy up in it than go out with the other kids and play in the snow.  Anyhow that’s why I am working from home today.

Then again, I’m not exactly working, instead I am blogging and looking at cruises from New York to the Caribbean.  Yes, I admit that this winter has gotten to be me badly, but, I am disappointed with the choices of ships during the winter months in NYC.  I don’t like Norwegian or Royal Caribbean, and, Cunard has their ships off on world cruises.  Why can’t we get a decent cruise line in the NYC area on a full time basis.  Oh how I would love to see Princess or Holland America here for the full year instead of every once in a while…

Sure, we could fly to Florida or Puerto Rico for a cruise, but, the whole point is that you never know what the winter will bring and there is no guarantee the day of the flight to get to Puerto Rico or Florida the good weather gods will smile upon you with kindness.  No, after all the miles I’ve logged in my lifetime on airplanes, I know all too well not to count on anything, especially in the winter.

So, in the meantime, I continue to check out the cruises that are available, and, I am trying to pick out the lesser of the evils.  I hate being nickled and dimed to death like NCL does to its passengers.  And, I cannot stand the idiocy of Royal Caribbean with their gimmicks that appeal to middle America.  Carnival.  Well.  Thanks but no thank you.  Am I a snob?  You better believe it.

I have no desire to spend vacation time watching fat bellied men doing belly flops in pools, nor do I have any desire to watch “Broadway STYLE” shows – the key here is that the shows are Broadway style, and, not Broadway productions; and, I certainly do not want to attempt to swim in a pool with dozens of rude teenagers and their parents who are in denial who always use the excuse “not my kid.”  Well, if it isn’t your kid you better have a paternity test because the kid looks exactly like you!

Which brings me back to the same question.  Why doesn’t Princess or Holland America have a ship in NYC full time?  There are plenty of people in the NYC area that feel the exact same way I do, and, I’m positive the NYC would be a profitable choice.  Alas, I have no say in the matter.  Cruise lines never listen to one person, they’d much rather check what people on large networks that discuss cruising day and night have to say.  And, the problem there is they only represent a small portion of the overall amount of people who cruise.

So in the off chance someone with any type of authority at Princess or Holland America happens to see this post please know I’m in the wings awaiting a miracle that you’ll bring a decent ship to NYC full time.

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas – by Clement Clarke Moore

24 Dec

From myself and Gary have a happy and save and very Merry Christmas!

tree

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas”
(or A Visit from St. Nicholas)
by Clement Clarke Moore

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
in hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
while visions of sugar plums danced in their heads.
And Mama in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap.

When out on the roof there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
tore open the shutter, and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
gave the lustre of midday to objects below,
when, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
but a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles, his coursers they came,
and he whistled and shouted and called them by name:

“Now Dasher! Now Dancer!
Now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On, Cupid!
On, Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch!
To the top of the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away!
Dash away all!”

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
when they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky
so up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
with the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too,

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
the prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head and was turning around,
down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.

He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
and his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
and he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

His eyes–how they twinkled! His dimples, how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
and the beard on his chin was as white as the snow.
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
and the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
that shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
and I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself.
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
and filled all the stockings, then turned with a jerk.
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
and giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight,

“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

Mirror, Mirror On The Wall

3 Dec

It’s a rainy and unusually slow day at work for me in New York so I decided to blow the dust off my blog here and actually make an entry.  The funny thing is the thing that led me to this entry is something I blogged about last January.  It’s basically about how self centered people are on social media, and, how sofasomeone I once thought was great and even admired lost much of her appeal after reading her Facebook page and her blog droning on and on about “her”.  And, admittedly, yes, Facebook and blogs are a place to share your thoughts and happenings with your friends and online friends.  The thing about this person is that she was kind of in the limelight for a brief spell, and, she continues to harp on the subjects of the past – old boyfriends, ex husband, things that happened 20 years ago or even longer ago.  She rarely mentions what’s happening now (other than to promote her business, which, frankly, is pretty crappy, but, she’s managing to make a living at it, so more power to her.)

Anyhow, as I said, today has been usually slow so I did resort to going through Facebook, and, just for the heck of it, I went to this person’s page.  Almost a year later and nothing has changed.  It’s all about her, and, the point I’m trying to make here is I’m kicking myself for ever thinking this person was worth being friends with and that I thought she had some really cool things going on in her life.  At one time it was true, but, not now.  And, it just makes me so grateful that I’m not going down that same path.

The one thing Gary (my lovable husband) does is keep me focused on the here and now, and, the future.  He always tells me we can’t change the past, and, there is no point in dwelling on what we can’t change.  And, he’s right.  After all this past year we bought a summer/weekend house in the Hamptons, we’re taking two W991569-3ONDERFUL vacations this year. (Meaning 2015) – we’re going back to Paris to finish a vacation that was interrupted, and, then we’re heading to Germany for an entire month.  So lots of things to look forward to including Christmas which I can’t believe is almost here.

I mean, honestly, where did this year go?  It’s December 3rd!  And, we were going to go to the Rockefeller Center tree lighting tonight, but, there weather doesn’t seem to be clearing up as the weatherman was saying, so, we’re going with Plan B, and, having friends over to our place to watch the lighting, and, we’re making a small party of out it.  And, that’s one thing that this person I’m referring to never does – she never discusses what’s happening now or how she turned something that was a bit of a downer into something more positive, and, I guess what I’m trying to say is that I’m growing up, and, you know what?  I like it! 😀  And, I am so happy just to be me, and, have a life worth writing about in the moment instead of harping on things from my past.

Halloween in the Village 2014

4 Nov

Halloween in the Village 2014.

Look out the window -it’s Fall

19 Oct

pumpkinWhat is it about Fall that makes me want to make stews, beef Stroganoff and other cold weather comfort foods?  I’ve been thinking about apple pie for weeks now!   Alas, no cooking for me today.  Gary and I are off very shortly to go hiking upstate (New York.)   I compromised since within a few weeks we’ll be heading upstate for an entirely different reason — shopping at Woodbury Commons!!

However, a hike followed by stopping at a local stand for apples and pumpkin picking do sound great today.   I know we’re in the last of the warmer weather, and, the winter cold will be howling down the canyons of Manhattan all too shortly.  So I want to make the most of it, even though the wind is kicking up pretty fierce today.  It just makes all that much better when you come home to a toasty apartment, and, feel safe and snug.

Off we go 🙂

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