Monday, January 11, 2010

An Award from Welchcakes Limoncello

Welchcakes Limoncello has a beautiful blog called Sicily Scene.  It is full of interesting tidbits - gorgeous photographs, recipes, articles she writes for Italy Magazine, cultural descriptions, anecdotes.  I always enjoy her descriptions of fabulous dinners she has attended and the accompanying photographs leave me writhing with desire - especially if I've had a day of high protein cereal for breakfast and lettuce for lunch!

I just received a lovely award from far away Sicily and, as a condition of the award, I must tell you seven things that you do not know about me.  Since I recently did something similar for steviewren, I had to ponder a bit.

Here  is  the award.

Now for seven more things you don't know about me:

1.  Once, when I was a student nurse in New Orleans, I swung on the velvet swing - and I lived in fear for months afterward, that I would be called into the director's office and told to find another 
profession!  We used to frequent a bar called "The Velvet Swing."  A damsel, in little scanty outfit - sort of a bikini, would swing, to music, for about ten minutes every hour.  I told the performer ( ? ) I wanted to try it,  never dreaming she would say yes.  When she did, I changed my mind but my buddies insisted.So, bikini and all, I had my few minutes of fame! 

2  My passport was stolen in London about five years ago.  I had just arrived that afternoon,
with three friends for a long weekend.  We had just finished afternoon tea and were about to
head to our rooms for a little nap.  Still seated at our table in the Hilton, I put my purse down on the floor for about a minute, while I put my coat on.  When I reached down to put on my coat, my purse was gone.  None of us had seen anyone.  We immediately set up a hue and cry and people went running everywhere, searching the perimeter of the luck.  I was especially heartbroken because I had sent back this passport for additional pages and this was 
full ( 85 pages ) with stamps from all over the world.  I had to go to the U. S. Embassy ( lucky 
that I had a scanned front page of my passport in each suitcase ) for a replacement.  I was told
that, even if it were found, the U. S. State Department would not return my passport to me.  I know that I will never visit some of those countries again.

3.  When I was in the 8th grade, I was in the Alabama state spelling contest ( I went to St. Patrick's School in Phenix City, Alabama - just across the Chattahoochee River from Columbus, Georgia from grades 3 through 8 ).  I came in 25th out of 50, I believe, but I don't remember what word got the best of me.

4.  I once married a friend, a fellow judo club member, to try to keep him from going to Viet
Nam!  He was second generation Japanese from Maui, Hawaii, stationed at Fort Benning.  I was only 17, under age, and it was ( 1962 ) against the law in Georgia for a Caucasian to mary a Native American, an Asian or an African American.  My mother, who was a nurse for a doctor's office, was a notary public so I forged her signature on the license, used her keys to the office and notarized the application, then Tom and I went to Phenix City, Alabama and got married!  Less than a month later, off he went to Viet Nam and off I went to nursing school, really nervous since you could not be married and be in nursing school back then.  About a year later,
on his way to a new assignment, he stopped by New Orleans and took me out to dinner.   Three years later, when I finished nursing school, I tried to have the marriage annulled but the judge said, because so much time had elapsed, I had to file for a divoce.

Years later, Tom contacted one of our other judo club friends in Hawaii to ask if he ever saw me.  Warren said I frequently visited him in Hawaii and vice versa and gave Tom my phone number.  It seems he had been working as a CPA in San Francisco for about 15 of my beginning years in San Francisco!  During one trip a few years ago, he came by and met my
boys and we all had a great laugh!

5.  Unfortunately, since my back surgery about 25 years ago, I've gained 100 pounds.

6.  On January 4, 2008, en route to work, about three blocks from my office, in a huge wind 
storm, a huge city tree fell on my van, totaling it.  I was inside.  Fortunately, I was not totaled.  I
did have to miss work that day.

7.  About 25 years ago, when I was a nurse in the operating room at St. Mary's Hospital in
San Francisco, I slipped on hydraulic fluid that leaked from a defective operating room table.
I ended up bilaterally rupturing discs from L4 to S1 in my lumbar spine.  Even though Dr. Arthur White operated on me three months later ( he's the one who did surgery on famed Forty Niner
quarterback, Joe Montana ), it was a year and a half later before I returned to work.  My fusion would not fuse ( they had taken a piece of my right iliac crest.  It was a pretty difficult time for me.  I had a son, aged 3, and one a  year old - and my husband left.  If it hadn't been for Shawn, who was 13, at the time, I don't think I would have made it!

OK, now I have to pass the award on to 7 bloggers so I hope these folks might take the award from my site and give us seven facts about you that we might not know.

1.  lakeviewer at sixtyfivewhatnow
This is a wonderful blog of a retired educator, now living in Oregon.  Though Rosaria doesn't
post awards on her site, perhaps she will share a litte info about herself.  I feel I know a little bit
about her already and I love sharing this West Coast with her.

2.  beth at be yourself...everyone else is taken
Beth's writings and her glorious photography are always a joy.  

3.  Icy BC at Reach Beyond Limits
This blog is filled with beautiful photographs, helpful information, and good hints. 

4.  Tes at Craftista
This is another delightful blog with photography that is so beautiful.  Tes also has information
on products and assorted information that I find very useful.

Calligraphy in the Landscape

5.  ruma2008 at Calligraphy in the Landscape
I don't see awards posted on his blog but  I am sure ruma has them.  If he won't share info on the blog itself, I hope he will give us seven interesting things about himself and I'll post them here.  Ruma is a Japanese photographer and his blog is a visual feast, with so many wonderful pictures of beautiful vistas, Japanese treasures, things that will delight your senses.

6.  fullet at Secret Forest
 Josep, I think, is probably a little shy but I have so enjoyed getting to know him.  He is a lovely 
young Catalan gentleman who works for a publishing house and  has introduced me to some wonderful new poets and authors.  His photographs of Spain are wonderful as well.

7.  Chris at Enchanted Oak 
This blog is incredible with its poetry, prose, inspiration, sharing.  Chris is very open about her
recovery and her steps toward sobriety.


  1. I'm too much shy indeed, Carmen! But I'll start working right now in the post, you don't get every day such an award, and I am also glad to be a friend of Pat from Sicily Scene. Thank you very much for thinking of me, and for sharing the way you do!

  2. Ouch after your back surgery story I am not going to complain about my little toe.
    What an interesting experiences you have had. You wedding story was funny and I love that you swung on the velvet swing.

  3. Oh Carmen, your life is a story, and I love learning every bit about you!

    Congrats on your award, and thanks for passing on to me!

  4. Boy the life you have led has not been dull.


  5. Hello Carmen, it's been awhile. I am still not posting, popping in to comment when I have a few minutes. WOW I always knew you were a woman of many talents, big heart .

    YOu sure have overcome allot in your life and I give you pat on the back for that. I love the FUN , dangereous side of you as well. TY for sharing, CONGRATS ON YOUR AWARD


  6. Margie: Thanks for sharing that beautiful blog. I'm surely part Italian. Love to hear your stories too.

  7. wow you've had a very interesting life! ive enjoyed reading this.

    and the award is very well deserved!

  8. Thanks for sharing all these, nice to know more about you.

    You married too early and even had your way to push with it. I can't believe you'd have so much guts to do such thing.

  9. Congratulations deserve it...wonderful blog...nice job....

    and what is the name of the Thai restaurant in the city? love s.f.

    more later,

  10. I love learning these tid bits about you, how is your back now, did it completely heal?
    Congratulations on your award, well deserved my friend......:-) Hugs

  11. thank you for this award....I'd like to thank my husband and my kids...
    hee hee....

    anyhow, I will do this soon as I am so behind in my awards...really behind and I now have like 21 things I have to tell about myself.

    but have amazing things about yourself you just told....and I feel terrible about all your back issues....

  12. Thank you for all the nice things you said about my blog, Carmen. Fascinating about that marriage and what a shame about the passport. Love the tale of the velvet swing.

  13. thank you for sharing..

  14. Anonymous11:00 PM

    interesting case you need to replace that passport, go here....


  15. Oh my god Carmen!!!! Why was it illegal to marry anybody who wasn't white in 1962!!??? That's so insane!!!!! I thought it was like that in the 1800's!!!!!

    And...omg got married when you were less than 17 years old!!?? woooooot!!!!!

    How long did you two stay married????

    Very interesting tidbits!!!! I would LOVE to meet you, after reading all of these!!!!!

  16. I very much enjoyed learning six new things about you. Since I knew about the hydraulic fluid accident, I guess you owe me one!

  17. I enjoyed learning more about you. I was especially sad about your passport being stolen and your back injury.

    Nuts in May

  18. Hi Carmen!

    I'm glad I had a chance to visit today to learn all these interesting and fascinating facts about you! You have had some rough spots in your life but you always seems to come up smiling and enjoying life, which is so admirable.

    Congrats on the upcoming wedding of one of your sons! Hopefully there will be a little bambino soon afterwards :-) Grandchildren give one a lot to look forward to.

    Congrats on your award! I look forward to reading Sicily Scene.

  19. You've led a very interesting life Carmen. Was your mother infuriated with you for running away to AL to get married?

    My back is still smarting from the description of your back injury. Ouch! I'm surprised you were able to go back to nursing.

  20. ps....I would have cried huge tears over the loss of that passport.

  21. I enjoyed reading your post.

  22. carmen..we got a little bit of rain..but it looks like the BIG STUFF is on the way...

    I'll be in touch with storm updates...
    stay cozy up there...


  23. fullet - we are all fond of you and that is one
    reason we would like to know you a little
    better! Hope you are having a feast for your

    Liss - I sure wish I had the figure I did when
    I sailed across the bar on that velvet

    Icy BC - I have certainly had a very full life -
    some things I definitely wish I had done
    differently, though!

    Renee - you're right, I haven't had a dull
    life. Perhaps, I would have been a little
    better off with more dullness!

    Inky - it's nice to see you again. I've missed

    kamana - well, I guess my life has been
    interesting. I've lived quite a few places
    in the U. S., traveled the world, had some
    adventures, worked pretty hard, but got to
    play hard as well.

    sm - I am happy to get an award!

    Ayie - I can't believe I was so daring to get
    married at 17. It all backfired anyway. I
    was just lucky my school of nursing didn't
    find out or I wouldn't have been allowed
    to enter. What is funniest is that Tom and
    I were just "buddies" - we never really
    lived together as a married couple!

  24. My Farmhouse Kitchen - the Thai restuarant that
    I love so much is Manivanh Thai on 24th St
    in the Mission near Potrero Avenue, just off
    Highway 101. I've eaten there at least 500
    times in 15 years and that is no exxagera-
    tion. They are like my own family there. If
    you get up here, be sure and let me know -
    I'll join you for lunch or dinner!

    Margie and Edna - thanks for stopping by to
    hear my secrets!!

    Bernie - I've had chronic back problems over
    the years and, now, in addition, I have
    both cervical and lumbar spinal stenosis..
    part of getting old!

    beth - now that I'm 65, I don't mind telling
    ALL, I guess!

    Welchcakes Limoncello - I still can't believe
    I did some of the things I did!! Easy to
    praise your's fantastic.

    magiceye - I am sure you must be thinking,
    "What a wierd lady!"

    Anonymous - I replaced my passport right there
    in London - I needed it to get back home..
    and I've gotten another one since! I could
    never be without a passport!!

    C - isn't it ridiculous - but it was true.
    Illegal, in GA, for Caucasians and native
    Americans, African Americans or Asians to
    marry but not so in Alabama. I don't know
    when the laws changed. I stayed married
    to Tom from 1962 t0 1965 - because I didn't
    want the school to find out about the
    marriage. I would have been asked to leave!

  25. Snowbrush - you are so funny...I'll try to come
    up with something else!

    Maggie May - I don't think I'll ever get over
    that passport. I look at my newer ones and
    there are so few stamps by comparison!

    Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti - I am so excited
    Alex & Laura's wedding. She's asked me to
    write a poem for the reception which I've
    already started. They've been together
    for five years so I don't think they'll
    wait that long for a baby. They are
    planning on two!

    steviewren - it was a whole year before my
    mom found out about my marriage and it
    wasn't me that told her. Because Tom was
    in the Army, I automatically began getting
    a hundred dollar/month allotment check. I
    had to get a post office box in New Orleans
    because it couldn't go to my dorm mailbox
    as Mrs. Nakamura. When I went home to GA
    on summer vacation, I went to Columbus
    Bank and Trust to try and cash it. I had
    my military ID but I didn't have an
    account there. I told them my mother did,
    never dreaming they would phone her. They
    called and asked if Carmen Nakamura was
    her daughter. Her response, "I guess she
    is and tell her to stop by my office on the
    way home from the bank." She was livid.
    She also stopped my $10/month allowance!

    Grace - thanks for stopping by and reading my
    crazy post!

    My Farmhouse Kitchen - I'm still waiting for
    the bad weather to materialize. Guess it
    will get her when it gets here!

  26. OH my, I do not know how I missed this post! Am glad I chanced upon it. Congratulations on the award, Carmen, you deserve it! I am deeply honored to be given this award. You are so gracious dear friend!

    I am glad to know these things about you. You live a full life! Very interesting stories! When I reached item number seven, ooh, I want to read more! You're brave and adventurous. Item number one is a w-o-w! Good thing you tried it, so daring! Go girl! You are strong too. You've been to a lot. I hope your back has completely healed now.

    I hope to live a life as colorful as yours. I applaud you!

    Thank you for sharing these things with us. I will start working on the award.

  27. I thank for your having mentioned me.
    I am very honored.

    It is just what you say.
    It is given me a lot of praise called FOLLOWERS. I feel it very honored.

    And the comments of your encouragement is so, too. Many comments of many friends.

    From the Far East.
    Best regards.

  28. ruma2008 - now you are supposed to take the
    blogger award and put it on your site, then
    tell us seven things we did not know about
    you. As I wrote to you, it may be too much
    if you are very shy...but my friend, fullet,
    managed it, much to my delight, and he shy.
    If you wouldn't want to post it on your blog,
    then you can email it to me and I will post
    it here. But you are supposed to give the
    award then to seven others and also, have
    them tell seven things you don't know about

  29. I had to come looking for this post after the intriguing comment. How fun. Thank goodness the world has progressed a bit. I was not only married but had two half grown children when I entered nursing school.
    By the way, when we first arrived in the south, that law was still on the books in Charleston SC. It was unenforcable, but still on the books. I am proud to say that I was one of the voters who helped remove it. Nice to know a little more about you.

  30. Holy manoli, #4 is WILD! Everything about it! That there were laws against interracial marriage (unfathomable in our day and age), and that you couldn't have been a nursing student if you were married. Times have certainly changed!