Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

My neighbors and their dog

September 22, 2021
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A German Shephard (photo from the internet)

My neighbors across the street have a huge German Shephard living in their home. I assume that it is their guard dog as well as their pet. This breed is known for its intelligence and ferocity.

The owners let their dog walk up and down the sidewalk without a leash. This is illegal. If their dog attacks someone, there will be criminal and civil penalties levied against them. I can just see it happening.

Further, I don’t see the owners carrying a plastic bag to pick up their dog’s feces. This is also illegal, and they could be fined. How awful to see their dog’s stinky mess in your yard! Not to mention it is disgusting to see flies walk on the feces, come into your house, and land on your food.

The wife is a physician at the military hospital, so she is not stupid or clueless about cleanliness and good hygiene.

The husband has a foul mouth. I overheard him yelling expletives at a man passing by with his dog, which was on a leash, by the way. I don’t know what caused this row. But, what’s wrong with the guy? Why can’t he be civil? And to think his three very young children have to listen to his foul language!

I have decided to distance myself from these neighbors.

I don’t like them.

God help me if I ever have a confrontation with these people, because it won’t be pleasant.

Lunch with Sylvia

September 20, 2021

My younger sister, Sylvia, came over for lunch last week.

I set the table with a beige damask tablecloth and matching napkins. Those are pink carnations from Colombia:

I stir fried shrimp with zucchini and onions in 1/3 cup oil, 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder, 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning, and 1/2 teaspoon chili-garlic sauce.

There were other items on the buffet, such as brown rice, Caesar’s salad, and Hawaiian sweet rolls.

Sylvia liked the shrimp so much that she had a second serving of it. It was the cumin powder that really made it taste good. Cumin has a unique flavor and aroma:

David and Sylvia:

Sylvia and me:

After we ate our dessert, comprised of mango sorbet, we retired to the living room where I showed Sylvia my violin. She picked it up and played a scale, sounding very rusty.

She wanted to buy my violin from me, but I told her to buy one at CK Violins on Ala Wai Boulevard. She did so, and returned to show it to me.

This is my violin. Sylvia’s violin is not as dark as mine in terms of timbre and color. She said she likes mine better:

Since this luncheon, I have given Sylvia four violin lessons. They are free; I don’t charge her for them. She is studying Suzuki Book One, and has already mastered “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” I am teaching her how to control her bow and how to read musical notation. She is a quick learner.

She was once the concert mistress of the Roosevelt High School Orchestra back in the 1960s, so she definitely has musical talent. But, it has been 55 years since she last played the violin, so keep that in mind.

I’ll teach her what I know, but if she wants more advanced training, she will have to find herself a better teacher.

They don’t harass us anymore

September 17, 2021

Our home.

Since the pandemic started in early 2020, we have not been bothered by Mormon missionaries and Jehovah’s Witnesses. They no longer come to our door, demanding that we listen to their spiel about how wonderful their religion is. Once they start proselytizing, they won’t shut up. What a nuisance! So, we are overjoyed that the Covid has stopped them from harassing us.

Our house is wide open. There is no fence in front of it. Anybody can walk up to our door and knock. We considered installing a fence, but it would be expensive and inconvenient.

However, we have a monitored security alarm system, which deters burglars, rapists, and murderers from committing their horrible crimes on our premises.

So far so good. Fingers crossed that only good things will happen to us now and in the future.

Don’t live in the boonies

September 15, 2021
Pali Momi Medical Center

If you are old and retired, there is a big reason why you should not live in the boonies, far from the city. While it is pleasant to experience Mother Nature, you should realize that it is neither safe nor convenient.

What will happen to you if you have a heart attack or stroke? How soon will the ambulance arrive, and how long will it take to get to the hospital? Minutes matter. The sooner you receive treatment, the better off you’ll be. Time is of the essence.

You should not only consider the distance to the hospital, but also the amount of traffic on the road as well as the number of lanes on the road. If there is only one lane in one direction, and there is always a lot of traffic, then it will take longer to get to the hospital. In some instances, the patient might have to be airlifted, which would be extremely expensive.

Location is important. Do try to live near the hospital.

Minutes matter when you are having a heart attack or stroke.

Orzo salad

September 13, 2021

There are many types of pasta. One type is orzo, which is imported from Italy. Orzo resembles grains of rice, but it is a starch, not a grain. It tastes very good in a salad.

Plan on using 1/4 cup of raw orzo per person. But, just to make things easy for myself, I cook 1 cup of raw orzo for the two of us. Then, we eat leftovers the following day. It keeps very well in the refrigerator. Just bring it to room temperature, and it will taste better.

Make the orzo salad prior to serving. Serve it at room temperature.

ORZO SALAD (for 4 people)

1 cup raw orzo

3 quarts water

1/2 green bell pepper, chopped

1/2 red bell pepper, chopped

1/2 cup sliced black olives

1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled

4 tablespoons Italian salad dressing

Bring the water to a rolling boil. Cook the orzo for 10 minutes. Drain in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking. Drain thoroughly.

Rinse and dry the pot. Place the orzo back into the cool pot.

Add the other ingredients and toss.

Then, transfer the contents to a serving bowl.

***

I baked some skinless, boneless chicken thighs, which had been dipped in honey barbecue sauce, and topped with panko crumbs. They were in the oven for 40 minutes at 350F.

This is how I plated the meal: Orzo salad, two chicken thighs, and romaine lettuce. Colorful, isn’t it?

This is David, salivating at the delicious meal. Pink carnations from Colombia:

This is our dessert. Lime jello with pineapple chunks:

It was absolutely divine! I enjoyed making this fine dinner, and we both had such a good time eating it.

“Cinderella”

September 10, 2021

We had a wonderful time watching the musical, “Cinderella,” which is now streaming on Amazon Prime. It is a modern version of the old fairy tale.

Cinderella, played by Camila Cabello, is a stepdaughter, who has been relegated to the basement of a house in England. She has been enslaved by her wicked stepmother and is ridiculed by her stupid stepsisters.

Her dream is to open a dress shop some day. She buys fabric and sewing materials to make a fancy gown, which she hopes to sell. She goes to the market place and meets a handsome prince in disguise (played by Nicholas Galitzine). He buys the gown from her. Without revealing his true identity, he invites her to the ball. She tells him she will be there. She sews a gown for herself, but her stepmother deliberately throws ink on it, thereby ruining it.

Fab-G (Fabulous Guardian, not Fairy Godmother), played by Billy Porter, suddenly appears in the garden and waves his wand and — presto! — Cinderella is dressed in the finest gown you can imagine. She also wears a pair of glass slippers. Fab-G provides her with a carriage, 2 white horses, and footmen.

She goes to the ball, and of course, recognizes the prince as the guy who bought her gown. He introduces her to his sister, who is wearing the gown!

The prince falls madly in love with Cinderella and proposes to her, but she declines to marry him. She does not want to be a princess; she wants to be a seamstress. He promises to dress her in the finest clothing imaginable, but she wants to make her own clothing and open Ella’s Dress Shop.

The story goes on and on, but it has a happy ending. It reminds me of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s relationship. He, too, fell in love with a commoner, who was a career woman, and we all know what happened next.

The music in this movie consisted of popular hits, actually sung by the actors. You will recognize songs made famous by Queen, Motown, Cyndi Lauper, etc. The dance numbers were rhythmic and in sync with the music.

All in all, “Cinderella” was amusing and entertaining.

These are scenes taken from my TV.

The stepmother and stepsisters:

The prince standing next to the king on the balcony. That’s Pierce Brosnan as the king:

Fab-G:

The glass slippers:

The kiss:

The prince and the love of his life, Cinderella:

If you like comedy, music, and dance, then you will enjoy “Cinderella.” David and I liked it so much, we intend to watch it again.

It’s streaming on Amazon Prime.

We miss these people

September 8, 2021

It’s been a while since we saw my in-laws, Mike and Shirley, who reside in Massachusetts. This is a photo of David, Mike, and Shirley, taken in May 2019 in our home:

IMG_2459.jpg-A

Mike and Shirley have cancelled their plans to be in Hawaii for three weeks in October. Their decision was based on the rising number of Covid cases here, which is resulting in multiple deaths. The morgue is overflowing, and corpses are now being stored in trailers. The hospitals have set up tents on the grounds to accommodate the sick, because the wards are full. More than 600 medical personnel from the mainland have been recruited to help with the case load. Further, the hospitals must import more oxygen, as supplies are being depleted. Oxygen is needed for severe Covid cases as well as for lung cancer patients.

Oh, it is awful.

It has been a while since we saw our younger daughter, Lisa, who resides in Las Vegas, Nevada. This is a photo of David, Lisa, and Sylvia (my sister), taken in January 2020 in our home:

Lisa is a physical therapist in Las Vegas, Nevada, where the case numbers are also high. If she is ever hospitalized for whatever reason, who will take care of her two dogs and pay her mortgage and other bills? She has no family in Nevada. Nevertheless, she does not want to move back to Hawaii, because she owns a beautiful house in Nevada and cannot hope to find something similar in Hawaii for such a low price.

I must say that David and I are doing quite well. We are fully vaccinated and are Covid-free. We wear our masks and try to minimize physical contact with other people. We restrict our activities to grocery shopping, banking, doctor visits, etc.

So, we are fine. I hope that our luck holds and that we continue to be in good health. In fact, that applies to Lisa and my in-laws.

This is a photo of David and me at Michel’s, taken in June 2021:

Of course, we don’t dine in restaurants anymore due to the Covid, but this is a nice picture nevertheless. What a happy memory!

Dragon fruits

September 6, 2021

There were 20 red dragon fruits hanging over the fence in our backyard. They are usually harvested in August and September:

I gave some of the fruits to my Filipino neighbors as well as to Maria and her family.

The rest I kept in the refrigerator.

After chilling them, I cut one open:

David got the bigger half, and I got the other. We scooped up the flesh with a spoon. It was juicy with a slightly citrus flavor. It was delicious and so refreshing to the palate!

Dragon fruits are very expensive. They cost $7.99 per pound at the market. So, I treat them like gold.

David’s favorite boss

September 3, 2021
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Kaneohe Bay

***

I have decided to publish my blog posts three times per week: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

***

David had several bosses over the course of his work life. The one he liked the most was the one who treated him with utmost kindness and respect, two qualities that are so important in a boss.

From 1977 through 1992, David rose up the ranks from research analyst to research director at Hawaii Transportation Association. This promotion was due to Mr. Paul Findeisen, the general manager, who truly appreciated David’s competence and talent. The research department worked on rate increase studies for the trucking and passenger carrier industry in Hawaii. The industry was regulated by the Public Utilities Commission. The Western Motor Tariff Bureau published the tariffs for the industry.

Mr. Findeisen once invited the entire staff to dinner at his lovely home, which was located on the shores of Kaneohe Bay. I remember it fondly. We were all seated on chairs on the lawn with the bay in front of us. The sun was winding its way down over the horizon, and it was so pleasant to gaze at the water and the opposite shore. The weather was perfect. If I had been an artist, I would have set up my easel to capture the beauty of it all.

While we chatted quietly, Mr. Findeisen barbecued teriyaki chicken thighs on the charcoal grill. The tantalizing aroma of soy sauce and sugar permeated the air and whetted our appetite. Besides the chicken, we were served sushi, different types of salad, and other delicious items. Then it was over, and we said thank you and aloha.

Mr. Findeisen was David’s boss for ten years. He died of cancer at the age of 71 in 1992. A funeral was held at the church and a reception at his home. David was sorry that his favorite boss had passed.

After 1992, Hawaii Transportation Association shrank in size, when the research department was eliminated, because another company underbid them for the contract.

David went on to become the comptroller of a different company as well as a part-time accounting instructor at a college.

He fully retired in 2014 at the age of 65.

What a great career!

Diamond Nails

September 1, 2021

Every two months, I like to have my toe nails done at Diamond Nails in Salt Lake Shopping Center. The parking is free, and I don’t have to walk very far to get to the salon. This is the salon with outside tables roped off to prevent socializing during the pandemic. This salon is owned and managed by Vietnamese, and the staff is bilingual:

I forgot to get her name, but this technician was efficient. All I wanted was a nail clip and polish change. It is very difficult for me to do this by myself. At $12, this type of service is a bargain and well worth it. A regular pedicure, however, costs $30:

This is me after the nail clip and polish change. Note the plastic sheets between the chairs. Fortunately, it was not crowded with other clients at that time:

And here are my toes:

One of the perks of living my kind of life!