Thursday, September 07, 2006

Movies, Red Sox & Vacation

Over the past several weeks I've had the good fortune to see several really good movies. We watched The Inside Man on DVD and, at the theater, saw The Devil Wears Prada and also The Illusionist. I thought The Devil Wears Prada was an insightful (at least that's what the reviews said) parody of the fashion world. If that's the way the industry runs, I'm glad I'm not a part of it. I likened the movie to other parodies, like the one on dog shows and My Big Fat Greek Wedding, which I found to be entertaining, funny and mostly true.

The other two movies, The Inside Man and The Illusionist, I thought, were really good. I loved the way they hooked me in, kept me wondering how they were going to pull it off and then reveled in their doing it. Definitely two movies to see. I'm only sorry I didn't get to see The Inside Man on the big screen. I think something gets lost when watching a movie on a TV screen. Anyway, I would recommend The Illusionist for several categories for an Oscar.

Julie and I have been trying to get tickets to see the Red Sox at Fenway. Ever since I moved up here people have been asking me if I've gone to see a Sox game yet. After the world series victory, Red Sox tickets have been virtually impossible to get. And, just like when the housing market was hot, people would bid on tickets and pay astronomical prices, just to say they'd been to a game.

Now that the Sox are in a big fade, people are dumping tickets. I've been on this week and am getting close to scoring a pair of tickets. People are willing to sell the tickets for face value or less now that the Sox are out of the post season. Maybe I'll now get a chance to see a game at Fenway. I answered one guys ad on Craigslist for 2 box seat tickets, $90 face value each, for $140. I'll find out before the end of today if it's a go. Apparently he's also dealing with someone else who wants them.

I'd like to see Fenway. If we get the tickets for Saturday night's game, we'll get there earlier in the afternoon to walk around and absorb the atmosphere, have a beer and some food at the local bars and then head on into the park. I'm pretty sure we'll bring coats with us. It's been getting down into the high 50's at night and so there's a need to dress warmly.

It was something this past week. On Labor Day weekend, traditionally the last weekend of the summer, and a big beach weekend, I was wearing long pants, a long sleeve T and a jacket. I'm thinking, in Baltimore it's close to 90 degrees and up here it's around 55.

A new small business opened up on the street level of my building. An alterations place. Mim is the owner, along with her husband, Ed. In preparation for the coming winter, which up here may be anytime soon, I had her repair the lining of my leather coat, of my full length rain coat and also (I'm almost ashamed to say) to let out the waist of two pairs of pants.

Due to Dr.'s orders, I've not been exercising and so have been continuing to expand at the waist line. I'm trying to keep my eating under control but.... I guess walking the dog twice a day and going dancing Friday nights is just not enough.

I did start taking Salsa lessons this past Tuesday. Julie and I went over to Union Station in Newton. On Tuesday evenings the upstairs bar of the bar/restaurant offers Salsa. Julie had gotten well into intermediate levels when she stopped,which was before she met me. Since we're going to be headed to Sarasota, FL for vacation, and will be going to salsa dance places while there, I thought I'd better get familiar with the dance.

I've never been to Sarasota before and have only been to Florida once before in my life, in 1973. My grandmother used to have a house in south Miami and so one summer I drove down there. I remember crossing the border from GA into FL and saying, okay, almost there. Then I read the sign that said Miami - 350 miles. I also remember getting sunburned pretty badly. And, it was hot, hot, hot. But, I did have a good time going to the beach, sightseeing and heading down to Key West for a day. So this time, with a lot of sun block, loose weave clothing and (a little) more maturity, I hope to fare better. It should be fun.

Sarasota is on the gulf side and, over the years, has been spared having hurricanes blow through. I'm hoping it gets spared while I'm there. The town is now undergoing somewhat of a boom,and there are lots of jobs down there. I read an article in their local paper that talked about how there's a lot of work but a lack of affordable housing. Businesses are locating there because there's a large retirement community in residence; unfortunately, the businesses can't find workers because the workers can't afford to live there. I read one story about how a business owner has bought several houses and is renting them out to workers in an effort to recruit and retain them. It's a dilemma and my guess is things aren't going to get better any time soon.

At any rate, I hope to have a 2 week vacation that can't be beat. We're going down in a few weeks. When I return I'll be nice and tanned. Of course, since we'll be returning to the oncoming winter, the tan'll fade soon enough. Hopefully the memories will last a lifetime.


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