So I have been loafing for a while. Work “ended” on Saturday with our last crew meetings, but some loose ends remain to tie up, and I still will be called upon to collect the crewʼs badges and bags, as well as my own, sometime. Except for one major glitch (which I hope we can resolve, but I donʼt know), the job is over, although I still get paid for two more weeks for what I did the past two weeks. (I went for two weeks before I got my first paycheck, too.)
The weekend was a fun blur of excitement, once the final crew meetings were completed, with our jaunt to Cedar Rapids. Janet and Kevin and I ate Greek on Saturday night at the Vernon Inn, which was wonderful — Opaa! (And we did start off with saganaki, nearly irresistible with the Vernonʼs warm pita pieces.) Furthermore, none of us could resist going the Greek platter/sampler dish route (I personally never can: I want to enjoy all those tastes). The Greek Place included spanakopita, gyros, moussaka, pastitichio (the one I would probably opt for if I had to select a single main course), dolmathes (wonderfully smooth and refined in a subdued and interesting white sauce, no acidic harshness in the grape leaves). We tried a refined Greek wine as well, which drank as smoothly and nobly as a decent Cabernet. Our waitress was a fine lady, fun and tolerant (and she paced our meal perfectly — slowly: we were the last guests in the place at 10:00 PM); I tried to tip her appropriately — certainly better than a neighboring table that appeared to leave only $2.00.
Of course, the real draw for the weekend was the talk, as always when Kevin and I get together. We sat in one of the two hotel rooms (at a really pitifully poor Howard Johnsonʼs on the south side, 33rd Avenue, which must make its way — and thereby lose travelers — through becoming a residence hotel) for several hours before dinner and until nearly 1:00 AM, just talking. And we continued the conversation on Sunday at breakfast and later in Iowa City at the Coralville mall, with some beer in hand at Bennigans. We enjoyed hours there, with another tolerant waiter who decently left us mostly on our own. Then the separation for homes. Janet and I got back about 3:30 or 4:00 and did whatever chores remained, like towels in the laundry, before settling in for an hour of DVD I, Claudius (a ritual Janet has wanted to stimulate for Sunday evenings for a while now; we just watched part four, and now I want to reread the books for maybe the fifth time — go, Robert Graves).
The weekend away is the reason for the introduction and use of Stars in Heaven recently. I was able to post without even being home. Itʼs a bonus that several people actually noticed and responded to the portions of the story which have appeared.
As I already noted yesterday, I wasted Monday altogether (except for appointments). DVD must have gotten into my system because I did do more or less back-to-back Hitchcocks. I wish I could say I got amazing ideas or interesting technical notions from that viewing, but I really was just watching TV.
Tuesday early morning, I got up and ran (a good thing, although as ever the word “run,” or any of its conjugations or forms, is a ridiculous exaggeration), got Janet off to work and then finished the third Tarzan novel (and dozed because I havenʼt gotten a long nightʼs sleep in over two weeks). I went out to buy tickets for a local theatrical production of Nunsense on Friday night, paid some bills in person, and drove to Wal-Mart to grab Janetʼs prescription and the new-yesterday Sheryl Crow CD (both for her, although I like Sheryl, too), and then dozed and read while also watching a 1997 Michael Caine-as-Harry Palmer-again flick on one of the movie channels (it was okay, although I guess it must have tanked as a hit thirteen years back because I had not known it even got made). I received a call about unfinished work around noon, which I followed up, but which still remains uncertain, and finally started up the Mac and got to vaguely thinking about some work about 3:00.
So far the work has involved… only this, these 800 words you are reading on Wednesday. (I figured getting a post actually written instead of pulled from already-composed material was a good thing at least once this week). If I am going to do anything else, I need to close this out as it is and get to other things.
I havenʼt listened to the new Crow CD because itʼs like a gift for Janet, but I want to…
So thatʼs the latest from here as the heat and humidity are rising.