Saturday, February 10, 2018

Mail Thief

It was a Friday evening just before Valentine’s Day 2018.  I was visiting my neighbors, Jane and Gene, when a knock came at their door.  There were 2 security people from the Post Office (with guns) and they were holding 5 of the 12 Valentines that Jane had mailed that morning.

It seems that one of the part-time mail carriers had opened Jane’s valentines.   Jane had stickers for her grandchildren so the thickness of the RED envelopes (the RED indicates it’s a card) probably made the thief hopeful that there was money, a gift card, or a check inside.  (The gift cards can be used in pawn shops to get cash.)
Now for the next part of the story: 
My friend, Norma, who lives in our development about a mile away, arrived to her home that same afternoon to see about 9 police/security cars and a man on the ground with handcuffs on. 

It seems that this guy had been a suspect so the Post Office “bugged” a letter.  When it was opened, it set off an alarm.  When they approached his mail truck, he had a lap full of gift cards.
Jane had added tape when she sealed her envelopes and you could see where her tape had been opened and had replacement tape placed on top.  This guy was even prepared with scotch tape!

I saw our regular mail lady the next day.  She said this guy had quite a jail record and had been in rehab.  This last time, he bragged that he had completed rehab and was “dry.”  She said he had always seemed to have sob stories as to why he needed money and she had given him money at times.  She always wondered why he kept getting hired back
In the past my mail lady had mailed checks that were stolen and “washed” – meaning they changed the amount and who the checks were to.  She says that registered (or certified?) was a safer bet but even that is handled by people along the way PLUS, it costs over $20 bucks to send a letter!  

She also pointed out that we sometimes go to main mail boxes to mail things because we think it will be safer.  However, those boxes are picked up by human mail carriers.  Think about it, the guy who stole the things from the individual boxes here also had a key to all the main boxes.

It’s a shame to feel unsafe mailing something through the United States Post Office, isn’t it?

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Happy 2018 from Florida

Gary came back to Florida to visit me the week of New Year's.  We went to a New Year's Eve party at the theater here at Savanna Club where we sat with my neighbors/friends, Jane and Gene Pinson.
 Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Small World

This is a small post but it's such a small world that I want to share it with you.  On Christmas eve I saw with Michael and his mother, Verle Slifer.  I posted this photo on Facebook.
Shortly thereafter, friends from my home in Harrisonburg replied that when they lived in Maryland, they went to church with Michael and Verle!  What are the chances??

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Halloween 2017

Gary drove me back to my little house in Port St. Lucie, Florida and got to experience some of the Savanna Club activities.  I'm not big on too many dinner dances but Halloween is the exception.  People really get into the spirit and think of such incredible costumes.

I wore my Mexican skirt and Gary wore a guayabera shirt.  We are standing with a couple of very scary characters.  

Warning for Krista:  The next picture is going to be too gory for you 
but look if you can because this costume is really unique.
The Headless Horseman from The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.
I don't know where they bought this but it was really, really gory and fun!

We were at a table with Diana and Stu Kauffman.  They had created sandhill crane costumes.  Check out their painted legs and their heads were created with milk jugs.  I'm crazy about sandhill cranes so I especially liked these costumes.

Time out for a little science lesson:

My day is made when I see a few sandhills around. 

The coloration on their heads is quite unique.

 Hurricane Irma followed by the rainbow and pot of gold.

The Nerdy Professor

 This is one of my all-time favorites:  Cotton Candy and Popcorn
Wendy and Judy said they used yards and yards of pink tulle!  Their husbands were good sports, too and they also gave out free popcorn.

BONUS:  Here's my blog post from 2012  

Click here --->  Staid Halloween - Senior Style

 If you want to have some Halloween fun and laughs, Savanna Club is the place to be!

Monday, October 16, 2017

Cruise to Canada

Gary surprised me with an invitation to go on a cruise to Canada in October!  Krista, Gary's daughter, and her friend, Cheryl Nottingham, joined us.

We drove to Washington, stayed overnight, and left our car parked in the hotel's parking lot.  We flew to New York and were met by people from the ship.
(Click on any photo for a larger view.)
 Our route went from New York; to New Port, Rhode Island; 
to Boston, Massachusetts, to Bar Harbor, Maine; 
to St. John in New Brunswick, Canada; to Halifax, Canada; 
and back to New York.

Our first formal night.
Dinner on our first formal night.
Our first excursion was on an American Cup sailboat.  There were nine tourists, two deck hands, and a captain who loved what he was doing.  He had us share where we were from, how long we'd been married, and the secret to staying together.  When we told that we were not married but in a romantic relationship -- everyone oohed and awed!
There were photo opts everywhere we turned!
One of the highlights of the trip was supposed to be the fall leaves.  There wasn't much color this year but we did see some.  Once again, we struggle to try to take a selfie!
Going to the Northeast includes some excellent lobster.  We were glad that the servers came around and got the meat out of the shell for us.  Oooo, it was soooo good!
I was fascinated with how they prepared the dessert presentation.  First, they had different colors of icing in "mustard bottles".  They drew the design on the plates, then placed the item "just so."  Needless to say, they were fast!  And we were fast to sample as many different desserts as possible!
Cheryl and Krista were great travel mates.  They pretty much went their way but we always had dinner together and sometimes other meals, too.

This is the photo that we liked the best because we were both smiling with twinkling eyes.  The truth of the matter was that we were muttering about what a STUPID pose this was!

Gary and Krista do enjoy their cruises and I will gladly go most anywhere they suggest!    

p.s.  The good news is that we didn't gain weight.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Celebrating Year 72 for Gary

We celebrated Gary's birthday with Krista Suter, Bonnie and Winston Weaver at Rocktown Kitchen in Harrisonburg, VA.
Is this not the CUTEST guy?  
And he's just as kind, sweet, smart, fun, and gentle as he appears to be.
Happy 72nd birthday, Gary!

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Have a Sunny Day!

On the East side of Harrisonburg, a field of sunflowers is planted each year.  I'm not sure about the details but I think they let people take pictures and pick flowers for a donation for a designated charity.  We went about two hours too late.  The flowers were being bush-hogged but the gal was kind enough to give me the bouquet she had picked and take a photo for us.

Have a sunny day!

From Gary and MaryMay

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Bowman Reunion 2917

The Bowman reunion is an event that I look forward to every summer.  Getting to know and visit with my many cousins is great -- I enjoy having and connecting with my "roots."  I especially enjoy the Bowmans because they are known to be great cooks, especially for desserts.  I certainly inherited the Bowman sweet tooth gene!

My grandmother, Ruth Bowman May, was from the family of Eli and Amanda Bowman and they lived "behind" Singers Glen on Turleytown Road.
Click for an enlargement.
I am not sure who everyone is in this photo 
but I think Grandmother is the back row on the left. 

 Grandmother Ruth Bowman May was one of the most industrious people I've ever known. She and Grandaddy bought the farm in about 1920 and she worked alongside him, besides doing all her housework.  She talked incessently at home but was shy in public.  Oh, how intelligent she was!  I think she got all 6 May grandchildren through Algebra.  She's say,  "Now go do your other lessons and let me study this."  Before long she'd have it figured out.

She was an accomplished seamstress and taught me how to sew when I was in elementary school.  It was an advantage of growing up with grandparents because they have more time to teach you things.  She was very thrifty and would take worn adult winter coats and make them into children's coats.  

After Grandaddy died, the attorney said he's never worked with a woman who knew so much about the farm books and legal matters.
Four Generations: 
Eli Bowman, Ruth Bowman May, Walker May, Jr., and Mary Elizabeth May.
I shared my family with Gary this year and he fit right in.  Actually, he knew most of the people.

It's interesting that we grew up 6 miles apart and only 2 years difference in age, yet we didn't know each other.  We figured out that we rode the same bus from Mt. Clinton Elementary School to Turner Ashby High School.  We do know many of the same people, that's for sure.  Then again, that's kind of a "Shenandoah Valley Thing!" 

My mouth is already watering at the thought of the Bowman Reunion next July!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Power Tour in 2017 Corvette

(Sometimes I wish I had taken more photos but it might have "watered down" the experiences I was having if I would have been concentrating on snapping photos.  This blog is my journal which I use to jog my memory and to share with anyone who wishes to read it.)

Gary and I went on the Power Tour for a week in June.  This is put on by Hot Rod magazine and this was the 23rd year it has run.  This was quite an event and words can hardly do it justice, but here's an overview.   “Seven Cities in Seven Days” is the theme.  

Now…..before I tell you more I want you to know that there were 6,000 to 8,000 cars participating in this!  It can be any car, not just sports cars.  Gary drove his 2017 long-beach-red Corvette and we traveled quite comfortably in it.  Getting in and out gave our muscles a good work-out.

A course is laid out and it stays off the interstates so we see the local scenery.  People
were lined up in their front yards with their coolers and cheering us on.  It was a blast!!!  Sometimes our group would just stop and watch the cars go by for a while.  It was noisy what with all the spin-outs and burning rubber take-offs.   6,000 is a LOT of cars!!!!!!

Naturally, the motels were filled with Power Tour people so it was like a mini-car show every evening.  We walked around, talked to people, and just hung out.

There were 8 of us from the Harrisonburg area.  We ate breakfast together at the motel, had fast food together for lunch, and went out for dinner.  That lent itself to getting to know each other and we have made some new fun-loving friends including Orden and Reba Harman, Galen and Suzie Shank, Gary and Mary.  Not pictured are Wilmer and Shirley Shank.  A Singers Glen guy and his wife, L.F. and Debbie Miller, joined us for a couple of days.

This is at the National Corvette Museum and assembly plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky.  The tour of the plant assembly portion is mind-boggling to say the least.  I didn't realize that there is no other place in the world where they make Corvettes.   
The Corvette Museum is where, in 2014, a sinkhole opened up in the middle of the room and 8 Corvettes feel into the bottom of the DEEP hole.  Fortunately, no people were hurt as it was about 5:30 a.m. but the security cameras caught it all.  7 of the cars were restored but this one they left for all to see.

In Kansas City, Missouri we toured the Arabia Steamboat Museum and it was a highlight of our trip.  The Missouri is the longest river in the US and has claimed nearly 400 other steamboats over its 2,500 mile course.  In 1856, the Arabia was carrying over 200 tons of cargo intended for general stores in 16 mid-western frontier towns.  The steamer was still fully loaded when it hit a tree snag and sank just 6 miles west of Kansas City. 

Due to erosion, the Missouri River changed course over time, and the Arabia was buried underground for over a century – along with all of its precious cargo. Lying 45-feet deep beneath a Kansas cornfield, the Arabia’s payload was protected from light and oxygen and was thus remarkably well preserved.

From fine China to carpentry tools to children’s toys to the world’s oldest pickles—the Arabia’s artifacts are astounding.  Plus, the family who took on the project in 1988 has cleaned and displayed these items impeccably well.

Every afternoon, there was a venue in each of our tour cities.  There were lots of accessories, etc. for the cars, as well as shirts and food.  I felt sorry for the workers because they had to pack up their wares and hightail it to the next stop every day. It was like a county fair for cars each day.  That's where we went to get our badges validated.  

We have figured out that the Harrisonburg area wouldn't be large enough for the Power Tour because there wouldn't be enough motels and even the fairgrounds wouldn't furnish enough parking for the 6,000 - 8,000 cars, vendors, and other workers.

Gary and I completed all 7 cities in 7 days so we won our “Long Haulers” metal plaque!

 OUR ROUTE:  We started in Kansas City, MO;  then Newton, IA;  Davenport, IA;  Champaign, IL; Madison, IL; Indianapolis, IN;  and ended up in Bowling Green, KY.

This shows you some of the boxes that were filled with plaques.
Another one of our adventures happened the last day of the tour.  We got on the elevator to go down to breakfast and the ELEVATOR GOT STUCK!!!   We were in there about 45 minutes and, even when they did open the door, it was between floors so we had to crawl out.  It was a dramatic ending to a Power Week of fun!

My hero, Gary Lee Suter, with his jazzy shirt and hat. 
 We covered 3,153 miles in that fast-paced week!   

Would we like to go again?  Sure thing!