Welcome home, Teddy!

New flannel sheets!

My husband used to travel much more frequently than he does now but he recently went to Austin for a conference.  By happenstance, the new flannel sheets had arrived; they not only look lovely but feel amazing.  Why flannel sheets in the subtropics, you ask?  Teddy was a Princess Prince in another life and I discovered decades ago that he could really feel a pea under 20 mattresses.  The bed has to be soft and comfortable, yet perfectly made.  My mum knew how to look after him with perfectly ironed sheets and underwear…

SO FLUFFY I COULD DIE!!!

In the back of my disturbed head, I have a secret fear that he will leave home and live in a hotel if I don’t provide a clean, freshly made bed on his return.  Teddy hates hotels so the fear is not based on truth but more of my own distaste of returning to an imperfect bed after staying in hotels (which I love).

Wine and soap

On the dresser you can see a bottle of Pinot Noir and some handmade soap that were my gift for his birthday.  Shortly after I moved to the USA, I started a new anti-depressant that made me ‘high’ and I was finally able to make soaps (a long held desire).  I am so good at it that friends asked me to sell them.  There were a couple of orders for baby shower favors which made me gasp with horror.  Not only did they know the sex of the baby but they had chosen a name!  In the UK we only gave gifts after the birth just in case the baby did not survive.  How do you know if she is going to be Apple or Peaches or Trixiebelle until you see her adorable little face? Eventually I had to come off the euphoric medication and realized I am allergic to the soap fragrances (even the best quality).  Now I just make them on special occasions and never use them myself as I have a prescription Sulphur wash.

So what is the point of this blog?  I love my husband so I make him comfortable and that is one of the secrets to a long marriage.  I make him soaps even though I get a headache and I can’t drink red wine but buy him his favorite.  That said, Teddy is currently in the wilds of Utah, Idaho or Montana – I don’t monitor his movements.  When he comes back, he will have another fresh bed but he is going on a diet because his shirts are tight…  Guess who is going to eat all the meat and booze that he can in Brokeback country???

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A tour of El Paso

tiffany-dome

Tiffany Dome

El Camino Real Hotel Downtown El Paso

El Camino Real Hotel
Downtown El Paso

Who would have thunk it? An exquisite original Tiffany dome over the bar of El Camino Real Hotel. I was awestruck. Since I was not driving, I booked a well recommended tour Border Sights Tours with tour guide, Rudy, at the wheel. He picked me up first and then a young guy who had just driven his unwilling (to return to base) military friend back to Fort Bliss from the Pacific North West. That is a hell of a drive. Rudy took us all over El Paso, more in future blogs, but this bit of gossip (below) tickled me.

Original Hilton Skyscraper El Paso

Original Hilton Skyscraper
El Paso

If you look at the top of the building you can see an additional smaller section on the roof. This is the penthouse suite where Elizabeth Taylor and her first husband Nicky Hilton spent their honeymoon. How cool is that?? The view from the top must be astonishing.

balcony-kennedy
hotel-cortez

Rudy told us that President John F Kennedy gave a speech from that balcony of the Hotel Cortez. I guess El Paso was the ‘happening’ place back in the day, eh? Wouldn’t it have been fun to see JFK or Elizabeth Taylor – wow? One of my favorite parts of the tour was when we visited a genuine Mexican bakery and could choose a cake or pastry. Rudy told us that they were less sweet than traditional Texan desserts because they used unrefined sugar. My churro was yummy!

Gussie's Bakery

Gussie’s Bakery

I loved this mural outside the bakery. More tales of our tour next week, including Fort Bliss.

Happy Anniversary and sorry for being a flaky menopausal crazy lady…

My beloved on a bridge in Nacogdoches

My beloved on a bridge in Nacogdoches

That title probably says it all but I suppose you would like an explanation. I just posted my latest travelogue from Nacogdoches which was truly a beautiful little city but we were staying a Hampton Inn on the main interstate just a mile or so from the center. We were there to celebrate our 33rd wedding anniversary. I would guess that many of their guests are just travelling along that route or are visiting the local university. The hotel was lovely despite its location and they put us in a nice quiet room at the back of the hotel. The first night was great and then I noticed a sign that said, ‘Welcome to student orientation’. There were plenty of out of state car plates including New York and I wondered if parents were bringing freshman college kids to visit the university. We had a lovely evening out and, as many Texans do, were in bed watching TV at about 9.30 pm. Then we heard shouting and eventually realized that it was coming from the car park despite the double glazed windows that prevented any noise from the busy road.

I opened the curtains to see a group of young men playing with a soft ball in the car park. They noticed me banging on the window and I signaled for them to go around the back to play where there were no rooms. There were no obscene signs but they had no intention of moving. We phoned reception who said they would sort it out. After ten minutes the top of my head blew off, I stripped off my nightdress and put on my shorts and t-shirt. My husband said that it would be better if he went down but I thought that might turn into an aggressive situation. I flew out of the side door and starting telling them that they had to stop playing ball in the car park, they were disturbing the guests many of whom had young children and they might damage the cars. I suggested that they play around the back which backed onto some forested ground. One was belligerent (was he from New York?) and that incensed me. How dare he answer back to a lady in her 50s who was telling him that they were disturbing the guests? You are in Texas now, honey! My voice raised and I said that they either move off or I would phone the police. In truth, the police couldn’t do much unless there was criminal damage but I thought a sharp talk from a Texas Sheriff might sort them out. Half of them started to move towards the back of the hotel, with the belligerent youth facing me off.

I turned around and stomped towards reception and met a man who I saw moving his brand new car to the other side of the hotel while I was remonstrating with the boys. I said, “Did you move your car because of those boys?” To be fair my tone was angry especially since he said nothing to the boys. His response was that they weren’t doing any harm; leave them alone, mutter, mutter and more muttering. I thought that the top of my head had blown off before but now it exploded. I was so angry that he had obviously moved his car to prevent it getting damaged (or the alarm being set off) and worse that he had not defended me that I shouted very loudly, “F*** Off!” I don’t know who was more surprised him or I. I rarely lose my temper or use cuss words in anger but it was worth it to see the look on his horrible face. He started telling me what he thought of me but I had stormed off to reception. The poor girl, who looked like a student, couldn’t deal with all the complaints from the guests but she should have dealt with the situation immediately. I said that if she didn’t move the boys on, I would call the police.

Then I went back up to our room – great anniversary mood, eh? My husband told me that they had briefly gone around the back, were presumably scared by the forest and raccoons (now I am just being bitchy) and came back. After 10 minutes they were still shouting in the car park and my husband put on his best scary Scottish accent (think Shrek in a bad mood), called reception and very firmly said that she either she call the police or he would. Magically, it worked and the hotel returned to blissful silence. The mood had gone, however, and nothing could restore it. We drove home the next day, stopping at one of our favorite places for lunch in Lufkin. Suddenly blackened catfish restored my usual sunny temperament and the weekend was saved. Sunday was our actual anniversary and we had a cozy romantic meal at our local restaurant after we returned home. All was rosy between Bunny and Teddy until Teddy uploaded Windows 10 onto Bunny’s computer and killed it. It took five hours of ‘conversation’ with Microsoft to restore it and Bunny is still not happy. It is going to be a thrill road through my menopause – Bunny alternates between loving spouse, sex mad cougar and crazy lady.