Bab’s Drive-In Dairy

(c) Google EarthToday, of course, is the last day of September. For a variety of reasons, it’s always been one of my favorite months, and it’s always bugged me slightly that September — having only 30 days — is one of the short-changed months. August around here is usually hot, muggy and buggy, so I’d be fine with Congress passing a law to give one of August’s days to September.

And pity poor February! Not only stuck with being the shortest month (a month frequently dark and very cold), but saddled with the responsibility of having to keep an eye on the calendar to even know how many days it has!

Perhaps Congress could also declare February to be National February Month!

In any event, as September slides colorfully into October, I’ve been looking back at my blogging the last couple of months. I’ve certainly been serving a different sort of meat than I intended when I began last year. And it’s hard not to notice that my patrons seem to have found it a more savory dish and that it’s a bit easier to cook up.

Being a bit on the lazy and self-indulgent side, that last fact is hard to ignore. (And being as vain as any human, the first fact is also compelling!) Top that off with how much of my energy the new work position is taking, and it very much looks like — at least for now — I’ll be changing the menu to favor more personal posts over the scientific ones.

No doubt some of you are dismayed that you’ll have to wait a bit longer for that treatise on Einstein‘s Theory of Relativity. (Maybe for his birthday in March!)

So join me now for a blast from my distant past, a tale of my very first money-earning job. (That seems especially apropos now that I’m ramping into this new position at The Company.)

The qualification “money-earning” is important. As with all kids old enough to be trusted with tasks, there was no shortage of “jobs” around the house or around the church. (My dad was a Lutheran pastor, so I was brought up, not with just a religious background, but one that saw it from the inside as a day job. And, yes, that’s right: I’m the son of a preacher man! [cue the Dusty Springfield song])

I’d also gotten into high school theatre, which was a whole new level of working my ass off for free (and loving every minute of it). So I was no stranger to work and responsibility, but — given that pastors don’t earn much — wasn’t very familiar with the getting paid for it part. Money and I were near strangers!

In my high school, taking a language each year was a requirement. You could choose between Spanish, French, German or Latin.

Looking back, I wish I’d taken Spanish, but I chose German. At that point I was seeing a scientific career ahead, and many scientific papers were written by Germans (the aforementioned Mr. Einstein, for example).

Sadly, that was largely a waste of four years of German, since I learned it poorly and remember it hardly at all. Turns out I have no facility with human languages (yet am fluent in dozens of computer languages — go figure). Part of the problem might have been the German teacher’s teaching assistant during the first two years. I can’t recall her name now (also not good with names), but she was young and very beautiful. I spent most of the class covertly staring at her. (Or at least imagining I was covert.)

(Not actually her, but you see my problem with distraction!)

Our teacher was a former Yugoslavian tennis pro whose cafe muscles were so well-developed she couldn’t fully zip up the boots she usually wore. Mrs. Yukavich (I think). She was a very nice lady, probably a great teacher, but alas I was too busy with the TA’s T&A (sorry, couldn’t resist the alliteration; in reality I’ve always been a face and hair man).

[I know you’re wondering what the hell any of this has to do with “Bab’s Drive-In Dairy.” I’m getting there, but I have to set the table before I can serve the meal. (And, yes, I know I tend to meander.)]

At some point before I arrived on the scene, Mrs. Yukavich began the tradition of leading a summer expedition of German students on a vacation tour of Europe — mostly focusing on the Germanic countries. This exposed the students to some real German (and real Germans) and gave them a chance to practice the language.

Above I mentioned two years. Turns out that Mrs. Yukavich (and the TA) moved on between my sophomore and junior year. The new German teacher, Mr. Brown, was an American who’d been a Mormon missionary in Vienna for many years. Another change was that second year students shared the class with us third year students, and that made my progress with German all the more hopeless.

(c) Google Earth

My walk to work!

But Mr. Brown continued the tradition of the summer Europe tour, and my parents (despite being fairly protective of their first child) thought I could go. The problem was that it wasn’t free. The school helped, but the students had to pony up as well.

I mentioned we were poor, so I had to find a job appropriate for a high school student (who was in school; this was no summer job). I did finally find one, and it was only four blocks from home (so no dependence on parents driving me to work or having to take the bus).

The job I found was — as my life so often seems to be — quite unique (oh, dear, Mr. Wilson just spun in his grave again). The only normal thing about it was that it involved retail. It was sort of like working at a 7-11 or QuikStop or what have you. It did involve running a cash register and stocking shelves, but it also had its unusual aspects.

(c) Google Earth

It looked much better in 1971.

I was working at a little place called Bab’s Drive-In Dairy. As the name suggests, we sold milk. And ice cream and cheese and bread and chips and Hostess products. And beer! (It was at this job I discovered and began a life-long love affair with beer!)

You may be familiar with the old gags involving California having drive-in this and drive-in that. Those gags are based on a reality. Due to the year around nice weather, drive-in whatevers are common. Bab’s had a two-lane driveway that looped under a huge awning that was part of the building. The building side was lined with glass refrigerator doors (such as you see in any market), and in front of them we had two cash registers on wheels (so they could be wheeled inside at night when we closed).

Boarded up and closed now.

The service mode was that someone would drive in and stop, one of the two on duty would walk to the car and take their order (we prided ourselves on not needing to write it down).

Then we’d fill it, bag it, ring it up and take it to their car. They’d pay us, and we’d take the money, possibly making one more trip to their car to return change. (We loved the ones that drove off leaving us a small tip.)

Those glass doors I mentioned (which we covered with plywood when we closed) fronted a huge walk-in refrigerator. A nice place to take a break on hot days. (Or to sneak a beer close to closing time.)  We also sold ice cream from a small freezer out front, but which we stocked from a smaller walk-in freezer out back. That was handy for a quick cool down on particularly hot days.

But I haven’t even gotten to the really good parts!

The “dairy” part of the name was not just because we sold milk. Every Wednesday, in the late afternoon, a large tanker truck would pull into the driveway and unload a jillion gallons of raw milk into the big tank located inside the building.

And every Thursday morning, around 4 AM, Harry (our boss) and his crew began processing the milk. Milk that we sold, and which we distributed to other Bab’s Dairy locations that were just retail outlets. They made and bottled whole, 2%, skim and some chocolate (and eggnog in December).

I gotta tell ya, while I’m not a big fan of cow juice, coming to work on Thursday afternoon and enjoying a pint of really fresh ice-cold milk and a Hostess Honey Bun was one of my childhood delights!

A typical weekday shift for me was from 4 PM to closing at 10 PM (if memory serves). It was here I learned an interesting fact about myself. When the sun goes down, I get a second wind. That’s still true. At last Friday’s party, I was exhausted after the week, but once the sun set — bam — I was fine. My ex-wife used to say I was part vampire (I am adopted, and I do like necks, so she might be right).

I also learned an important life lesson. Two of my co-workers were college age and “into the ladies.” Which meant that sometimes, after the boss had gone home, we had visitors who came to hang out and keep us company. There was one pair of young ladies, one of whom was into one of my co-worker. That left the other with little to do but talk to the high school kid.

I mentioned I was into faces. My hearing defect has a bit to do with that, I’m sure. I have some informal lip-reading ability and faces communicate a lot. That helps me (sometimes) figure out what is said. The gal I mentioned did not have an attractive face, but as time wore on and I got to know her, that reading changed. She became attractive to me.

The lesson was beyond just not judging a book by its cover (I knew that already), but that as you come to know the contents of the book, the way you see the cover changes. I learned the truth behind the adage that ugly is as ugly does, and so, too, beauty is as beauty does. A good lesson to learn.

Speaking of hard of hearing, when Harry hired me, I thought he said the pay rate was 42 cents per hour. Yeah, that was low, even in 1971, but I was a shy high school kid, what did I know. (I will say this: not always knowing the details of what’s going on around me has made me a very “go with the flow” kinda guy, and it’s led to some interesting, oft amazing, times!)

When I got my first true paycheck, imagine my surprise and delight to realize I was making $1.42 hour!  That was a happy day! Even better than the fresh milk and the Honey Bun.

Ready, Set,…

I haven’t mentioned that Harry was Chinese. In a place as ethnic as Los Angeles, it doesn’t really stand out. But in his office he did have one adding machine and one abacus.

After closing, when we’d count our “bank” (reconcile the cash register tape with the actual cash), my co-worker got the adding machine and I used the abacus. We’d race. Frequently I’d win (by a hair).

Abacuses are cool! I still own a couple.

I loved that job, and it brings to mind how extremely lucky I have been in my work life. I’ve loved nearly every job I’ve had, and I’ve managed to be employed consistently since that first high school job. My personal life may not have worked out as planned, but I can’t say I haven’t enjoyed my life’s path.

Indeed… I’ve enjoyed the shit out of it!

About Wyrd Smythe

The canonical fool on the hill watching the sunset and the rotation of the planet and thinking what he imagines are large thoughts. View all posts by Wyrd Smythe

43 responses to “Bab’s Drive-In Dairy

  • dianasschwenk

    It’s always good to enjoy what you’re doing. 🙂 My first job during summer holidays after grade 9 was making nerve-gas detectors for army use. Eventually I had to take that off my resume to actually get a second job!

  • rorypond2020

    Ok, a drive-in dairy – that’s definitely a new (and cool) one on me!

  • Cafe

    Wow, that’s pretty amazing you’ve loved nearly every job you had. This inspires me to write a post on some of my first jobs. Will have to sit on that one….But it is really nice to reminisce about those times given where we have come to now 🙂

    • Wyrd Smythe

      Hey, thanks for dropping by! Nice to see you in my neck of the woods. I’ve been very lucky in my work life (helps being an über-geek; we’re highly employable). Lucky in work, unlucky in love… I guess that’s an acceptable tradeoff, yeah? 😕

      • Cafe

        My pleasure! Been so hard to visit everyone’s blogs these days, but I’m trying!

        Haha, depends what you want most in life. But I think you can still have both 🙂

      • Wyrd Smythe

        Oh, but this blog is so much better than all the rest (except yours, of course), isn’t it? No?? Oh, okay, well drop by when you can! 😀

        You could be right. I just haven’t found the right one, yet. Someone who can both keep up and put up with me!! (The latter being the harder qualification!) 😮

  • thegreenstudy

    I was working on my post about the shittiest jobs I’ve ever had and now, reading this, I just feel ungrateful…..No, those jobs were really shitty. Glad to hear you have enjoyed yours!

    • Wyrd Smythe

      I’m painfully aware of just how lucky I’ve been and that there are really shitty jobs people have had to endure! The Universal Scales have balanced in my case in that I find myself post-55 with no family to call my own, and that’s a trade-off I’d often be willing to reverse. It sometimes feels like having carte blanche at the candy store, but no funds with which to buy bread.

  • Linda Vernon

    I really enjoyed this Wryd. It brought back a lot of memories of when I was that age. We had a Drive Through Dairy in Walla Walla where I went to High school. They had a life-sized plastic cow on the roof. One time it fell off while I was driving by. It sounds like an omen but it wasn’t because I haven’t had any trouble with cows since. And you were perfectly fine with $.42 and hour HA! I worked at a hamburger stand, The Iceburg Drive-in, in high school and they somehow got away with paying us a dollar and hour until we were 18. I guess I just figured some money was better than none!

    And oh what I wouldn’t give for a glazed honey bun and an ice cold glass of very very fresh milk!

    • Wyrd Smythe

      Oh, now I’m jealous! We didn’t have a cow on our roof! And I’m impressed with your drive-by cow toppling skills. The official story is you had nothing to do with it, right? [wink][wink] And I’m equally sure the cows chose to leave you alone after that, no doubt, no doubt!

      Yeah,… $0.42 / hour. What can I say; I was very naive at that age. (I was very young when I was born, so I had a lot of catching up to do.)

  • Andrea Kelly

    So many people go to work miserable – It’s very lucky to enjoy your working life! Especially because some people spend more time with co-workers than friends or family some days!

    All in all, it sounds like a really great first work experience. Did it earn you the trip to Germany? 🙂

    Also, I’m the same as you with the sleep thing. No matter how tired I am all day, night hits and I’m AWAKE!

    • Wyrd Smythe

      Yeah, I’ve been very lucky work-wise (on the other hand, I never did become “the next George Lucas”). I’ve had jobs I’ve loved (or at least liked) and they’ve been challenging (which I need).

      And I did get to go to Europe that summer! 22 days. Germany, Austria, Italy, France, Switzerland; it was a blast (I’ll be writing a blog post about it one of these days). To save money, we stayed at campgrounds and put our sleeping bags out and slept under the stars. One of the girls was a friend; we returned as a couple! GREAT trip! 😀

      Ah, you have the vampire blood also! Do you also nibble on necks? 😈

      • Andrea Kelly

        It sounds like a blast! What a great experience to have 🙂

        And yes…but I don’t sparkle!! 😛

      • Wyrd Smythe

        Well, good!

        (And to my credit, I had to research what the heck you meant by “sparkle.” Some sort of Twilight thing, I gather. Stay tuned… I have a post planned for one day soon(-ish) about a sexy vampire series of books for adults! I’ll give you a clue, just in case you already know of these. The clue is: Chelsea Quinn Yarbro :cool:)

      • Andrea Kelly

        Haha yes…oh Twilight! You’re lucky you had to google it. I’d be happy to find out about an adult vampire series…I was so disappointed when people who’s opinions I used to respect recommended Twilight to me…couldn’t even make it past the first chapter! Lol

      • Wyrd Smythe

        It’s the same problem as with Voyager, isn’t it… we need something for adults! The more you read and watch, especially if you do so with a discerning eye, the more refined your tastes become. Here’s what I’ll write a post about at some point: Chelsea Quinn Yarbro’s Saint-Germain books. Anne Rice slightly predates these; first Yarbro one is 1978, first Rice is 1973, but I never found the Rice books that much of a grabber for me (if you’ve never read them, they’re worth a shot, though). The Yarbro ones are very sexy and very historical, since each takes place in a different era. The main character goes back to ancient Egypt, as I recall.

      • Andrea Kelly

        “The more you read and watch, especially if you do so with a discerning eye, the more refined your tastes become.”

        This is SO true!! It’s amazing how quickly it can happen, too, once you start paying attention.

        Those sound like interesting books! I might have to try to find one the next time I’m allowed back in a bookstore 😛

      • Wyrd Smythe

        And I suppose it can ruin you for some mainstream things. Kind of a like a gourmet eating at McDonald’s.

        You may need a used bookstore, or one that specializes in science fiction, or even Amazon, for the Yarbro books. They were published so long ago (in modern terms). Not likely most mainstream bookstores would stock them (I’m sure they would order them for you, though). That’s been my complaint about the brick & mortar stores in the last few years: in an attempt to survive, they only stock what’s selling. Used to be you could browse and find all sorts of interesting, “must buy this” books. The bargain tables still turn up some interesting choices sometimes!

      • Andrea Kelly

        Ugh, I know what you mean! It’s ridiculously frustrating trying to find books in chain stores sometimes.

      • Wyrd Smythe

        Thank heavens for Amazon! (I wonder how much longer the chains will survive. One’s gone already!)

  • Lady from Manila

    I’ve seen only very few people who were able to use the abacus deftly in calculating. The swiftness of their hands dazzled me. I purchased a toy version for my son in his lower elementary years to facilitate his mathematical ability. I’m not sure if it helped. Some people were simply born real smart – like you. I think.

    It seems you’ve led a fascinating work life…and love life (which I hope you’ll get to share and write about here – in the near future). It’s such a delight to read stories that tell of your colorful past.

    • Wyrd Smythe

      I’ve definitely had an interesting life, no question about that! It wasn’t what I planned, and it does lack key elements (love, my own family), but it’s certainly had its compensations!

      I’m not sure how much of my love life I’ll write about, at least not in any detail. A gentleman doesn’t kiss and tell!

      • Lady from Manila

        Then don’t tell about the kissing part; just write about the others. (joke joke)
        Seriously, it’s nice to know my blog pal here is “A Programmer And A Gentleman” (a la Richard Gere). Although it would be nice if you could share the experiences, observations, and lessons you’ve accumulated in all your romantic years.

        Thank you for putting up with me this weekend. I hope another grand week ahead is waiting for you. Be well and safe, dear Wyrd.

      • Wyrd Smythe

        Yeah, maybe… I’ll see how it goes. There are some pretty good stories I could tell; as I’ve said, my life — whatever else you can say about it — has been pretty interesting. (Just between you an me (and, you know, the entire world reading this comment), I’ve toyed with the idea of starting a new blog for fiction, and possibly for erotic fiction. There are some stories that would be pretty sexy, especially with a little embellishment. And there are some stories about what should have happened had I had more sense at the time… writing those up might be a way to get the mild regrets out of my system. Maybe if I get bored with all my other hobbies!)

        I’ve also toyed with the idea of a new blog just to talk about programming topics… at least there I could speak with some authority and expertise! 😀

      • Lady from Manila

        I wonder why you included love as a key element lacking in your life. You meant romantic love, I’m sure. But other kinds of love can be equally satisfying, in my opinion. We long for the glamour of passion for the plain reason it’s the one thing that’s currently missing in our lives. Yet we all know romance feels good only at the beginning. After the initial stage, it’s all work. And getting married plus raising a family has long been planted in everyone’s mind as the ultimate goal in life when in fact, modern times can furnish the same happiness for single people through other ways. Ok, I think I need to write a post about this instead of burdening you with my thoughts here. 🙂

        Anyway, I’ll be looking forward to that new blog on “e-fiction.” 😉
        Take care, my dear pal.

      • Wyrd Smythe

        If you define romance as the hot and wonderful and delightful stuff that happens when you first fall in love with someone, I would agree. But I don’t define it that way. My parents celebrated 66 years together this past August 1st. “Celebrated” is, perhaps, the wrong word, since my dad is deep into Alzheimer’s now, so he’s pretty unaware of himself and his past, but mom is still sharp, albeit physically frail. The point is that they loved each other deeply all that time, and their relationship had plenty of romance.

        Relationships are work, no question, but the world’s history of mostly “successful” (for some definition of “successful”) arranged marriages shows that commitment and determination are as important (if not more so) than warm, fuzzy romantic love. Relationships that succeed replace that with a different kind of love based on comfort and commitment. What it really takes is someone deciding they’ve met “the one” and will be with that person forever (barring extreme circumstances, of course). I’ve made that choice a couple of times, now, but no one has ever made it back. I’ve just never met anyone who wanted everything I had to offer and who could put up with whatever she perceived as my flaws. And as your own perspective shows, it’s not even necessarily a way that people even look at the world these days. (What can I say? I was raised with some very “old world” ideas.)

        What’s missing is that person you can turn to and say, “Wow! Wasn’t that cool?!” (Or wonderful or awful or beautiful or touching or whatever… sharing the moment.) It’s having someone to share meals with, watch movies with, go to events with and wake up with. And the sex; I miss the sex. Sadly, at this point, I can no longer tell if I’m alone because I actually prefer it (and therefore should indeed embrace it) or because I’m just a big loser who could never find (permanent, real) love.

        Given the number of times I’ve shot for the basket and missed, I’ve been increasingly leaning towards the latter. (Actually,… as a baseball fan, I should say, “Given the number of times I’ve been at bat and swung at the ball,…”) Oh, well! As my mother says, “This is where we are.” Indeed.

      • Lady from Manila

        I just want to share my responses to a couple of blogger comments in my post “The Heart That Recognizes No Time”:

        “I actually believe in soul mates and matches made in heaven – although one lifetime is not enough for most people to find the partners meant for them. Only in such context can true commitment and fidelity exist. Otherwise, it’s going to be a difficult or a never-ending struggle for both parties to stay true to each other. People change over time, circumstances alter, and situations evolve. Love, apart from its ephemeral nature, is sometimes not enough to make things work in a relationship.”
        “The lead to an unexpected and fulfilling relationship” is not the hard part. It’s the tending to it that always proves to be the crux. I’m more often confused on how to connect the metaphor of love to a beautiful flower plant. Is it the blooming period that we must seize because of the flower’s fleeting nature? Or is it the necessity of looking after the whole plant that we should focus on to keep it alive and healthy?”

        And, you’re not a loser in love, Wyrd. People invariably think everything about love has been for naught just because they didn’t hit the home run.
        That we experienced the full glory of it twice or thrice in our lives could be enough. I guess.

        But frankly, another thing that baffles me is why your doorstep has not been blocked by a stampede of available women in your vicinity. Really. 🙂

      • Wyrd Smythe

        It is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all? Yes, I suspect that is true, although it’s also painful. You can’t mourn what you never had or knew. The fact that I have loved, and I have been loved, is very meaningful to me (and it’s been a few more than twice or thrice, which is why I’m feeling totally tapped out now).

        I don’t actually believe in the idea of “soul mates” at all. I do think people need certain basic compatibilities in things, but you can even mix and match those. There is a very small number of things I consider deal-breakers (e.g. hates dogs), but everything outside those is negotiable.

        I believe love (relationship love, not romantic love) — when within the range of compatibility — is largely a matter of choice and commitment and that these are conscious efforts. Choosing to be committed to one person isn’t always easy, but that’s where the conscious effort and choice come into play. And the ability to compromise… I’ve long had The Theory of Three Cs, that love is based on Commitment, Compromise and Communication.

        There is no confusion in my mind. Love (long term) is a plant that requires constant tending and feeding. The bloom is something to revel in while it lasts, and here’s the thing about healthy plants: some of them re-flower from time to time. Couple who’ve been together a long time in a successful relationship can rediscover the bloom!

        As for the stampede,… I dunno. Maybe I’ve just never found someone who could keep up and (more importantly) put up with me.

  • Lady from Manila

    Very sensible realities you got about love, Wyrd. The reason why I believe in soul mates can be seen in the cases of Prince Charles & Camilla, Sting and Trudie Styler, John Lennon & Yoko Ono, Paul and Linda McCartney…(aside from them, I can’t think of any other role models, pardon me please :-)). Who wouldn’t want what they’ve had?

    I hope you won’t mind me saying this, but there always exists an unspoken truth that it is the female gender who works the hardest to keep the ties between a husband and wife (except for rare circumstances). And when a man starts bragging about being bestfriends with his wife, I could only roll my eyes. 🙂 Yeah right. Because that’s the best they could only be after several years of marriage. Unless the couple is made in heaven, it is going to be a tough, long process till the end. I’ve seen so many cases around here – and everywhere that prove my point. Let’s face it: the majority of women would endure anything just to remain married or be in a relationship. Usually, the choice belongs to the man; the commitment – with the woman.

    Honestly, I commend you for choosing to remain single than settle for anything less. I would like to believe you are also that extremely smart in love. The majority of men just can’t live without having a woman (most often, any woman) to pamper them or take care of them.

    Joke: Nevertheless, it’s so difficult to believe you’re celibate. 🙂 You’re a man. And you’ve got money, dear pal. You can do anything. 🙂

    • Wyrd Smythe

      I don’t mind anything anyone says genuinely (although I always reserve the right to disagree). I suspect you might be right that, in general, women invest more in a relationship. Women tend to value the relationship more, perhaps? The differences can be subtle, sometimes, and there are many, many exceptions. Perhaps because they’ve been so rare in my life, I value relationships more than some and would be one of the exceptions who invests considerably.

      One fight my ex- and I had early was when she went off on me, because she felt she (who I’d known less than two years at that point) was now my “best friend” and not my “virtual brother” buddy of 25 years. In time, she would have become my best friend, because we always did really well at the “hanging out and having fun” and the “hanging out and having great talks” areas. But to think that you’re my best friend at this point?

      I have wondered over and over again why women stay with creeps when they could have someone like me. Granted, I’m no more perfect than anyone, but I have so many of those qualities women claim they desire (and I lack the flaws that women claim they hate). But I’m not the hunk that gets their blood racing (I’m more of a chunk), and sometimes that’s what seems to matter most. [shrug]

      I’ve thought of paying for it, but (A) with my my luck I’d run into a police sting operation, and (2) the idea that she’d be hating it and gritting her teeth until it was over completely puts me off. The whole idea of paying someone to like you on any level doesn’t play well with me. That keeps me from even the idea of a (platonic) escort for company, let alone anything more.

      • Lady from Manila

        Hi! I just got online. It had been a heavy week here, with the torrential rains and the academy’s ongoing peak season. Anyway, I’ve already gone over your replies to me (but will read them one more time after dinner). I was just so happy to see you write my name – Marj. I consider it a great start to a pleasurable weekend on our blogosphere. Your responses have warmed my heart after a long, cold week and now all I want is to blow three long kisses your way. 🙂
        I’ve been missing your writings. But I know you’re on a break… I also want you to come back only when you’re good and ready. I can suit myself knowing you’re just there.

        “I have wondered over and over again why women stay with creeps when they could have someone like me.”
        “The whole idea of paying someone to like you on any level doesn’t play well with me.” Splendid statements.
        Mwah, mwah, and mwah. 🙂

      • Wyrd Smythe

        Hi Marj! Three (virtual) kisses! Well, that’s a 200% raise from previous, wha hoo! 😀

        I take it the rains provide some relief from the heat (judging by the “long, cold week”)? The longer I’ve been on break from computer things, the more willing I’ve been to completely ignore the computer! It’s been a nice break considering how it ruled my work (and, to some extent, personal) life for almost three decades! At first, I can’t say I even felt the urge to write, but recently I’ve been feeling the tug. There’s the urge of personal expression plus the “mission” of leaving something behind.

        This weekend, however, I’m dog-sitting my buddy’s nine-year-old Lab, so I have a dog in the house for the first time in almost 10 years (my dog died in ’04). She (Rosie, the dog) has always been a bit on the needy side, and being in a strange house with someone she only sees when I visit has her a bit anxious, so I haven’t had the weekend to myself. She’s been walked, fed, walked again, played with, taken out to pee, played with and petted (and it’s just noon!), so she’s settled down a bit, and I can try at least catching up with some comments. Posting is probably out until at least next week.

        Thanks for the kisses. At the moment, in my present state of mind, I’d be most likely to scratch you behind your ears and offer you a treat! 😀

      • Lady from Manila

        I’d gladly settle for the scratch behind my ears – plus the treat. But I also would want to be “played with and petted.” Now now…don’t let that imagination of yours run wild. Remember: In your current state of mind, I am a dog. 😉

      • Wyrd Smythe

        Woof! Woof! 😆

        So would you rather play “fetch” or “rope tug”? 😀

      • Lady from Manila

        Ha ha!

        Wait, did you just say rope? Oh no, don’t even get me started with it. 😉

      • Wyrd Smythe

        Are you saying you’re a “knotty” girl? 😀

      • Lady from Manila

        knotty and naughty, what’s the difference?! Great combination in you-know-where… 🙂

      • Wyrd Smythe

        In the I-know-where??? In the eye? In the summer time? In the back country? In the eventuality?

        Nope,… no idea. Please explain in great detail (diagrams, charts and graphs optional).

        (Have you ever seen the Antonio Banderas/Vitoria Abril film, Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! It’s a rather wild (and dark) “romantic” comedy!)

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