Sunday, October 03, 2010

Bits and Pieces, Sunday, October 3, 2010

Bits and Pieces, Sunday, October 3, 2010

It is well after midnight and here I sit at my computer in Daly City, California, thinking
longingly of this date, for the past two years, when I was snuggling in my bed at the
Hotel Napoleon in Rome, Italy.  I will have to get off an email shortly to Roberto Cioce,
the general manager so he doesn't forget me.  He and his staff made my stays there
truly memorable and the most delightful hotel visits of my life.

My birthday flowers from Roberto Cioce of the Hotel Napoleon, Rome, Oct 3, 2008

My 40th birthday, I was in Paris, France.  That wasn't the best trip of my life but I won't
go into those details here.  Suffice it to say, I would have been much better off if I had
made that trip alone instead of with the traveling companion I had.  It was a most
unpleasant week as we visited Paris, then made our way down the Atlantic coast,
across southern France, and back up through the western part of France to Paris again.

For my 55th birthday, I was on a Mediterranean cruise with my beloved friend, Brenda
Garison, and saw Venice for the first time..  We dined with the charming Captain
Ronson the night before I turned 55 and he invited us to the bridge to sail down
the Grand Canal into Venice the following morning. What a special birthday gift that
was!  A few days later, we were on the magical Greek island of Santorini where I
rode this poor donkey up the steep cliff for a wonderul meal and views of a sparkling
blue sea below us.

Climbing up the hillside in Santorini, Greece

My friend, Sherry Arndt and I did a cruise from Ensenada, Mexico to Honolulu, Hawaii
in mid September 2007 so I was able to celebrate a very special aloha birthday with
Warren Fukushima, my friend of almost forty-six years. 

At the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Honolulu with Warren Fukushima

Last year, four friends ( two from California, one from Texas and one from Florida ) went
with me to celebrate my birthday in Rome and to do a six day Mediterranean cruise with
an overnight stop at the end in Malaga, Spain and four nights in Barcelona before flying
home.  Since that time, I've pretty much stayed close to Daly City. 

Cheers from the Piazza Navonna in Rome

So, no travels for me this year - but I did get a trip to New Orleans for my 45th nursing
school reunion which will take place October 15 - 17.  I'll stay for five days which will
give me a little time to visit with classmates who live in the area and to eat some
wonderful Creole cuisine.  That's one terrific birthday present.  Also, this morning,
my youngest son, Jeremy, and his lovely, Katie, took me to Verizon and gave me
a new Droid 2 for my birthday.  I have been playing with it all day and, maybe, just
maybe, by the time my next birthday rolls around, I may have mastered all the exciting
and fun things this new phone can do. 

I want to thank Ann of Retired and Crazy, a lovely woman, across the "pond" in England
for giving me this Versatile Blogger Award.  Ann's husband, Davy, died earlier this year
after a long illness but she continued to write and endeared all of us to her with her wit,
stoicism and stamina against the "system" while continuing to care for the man she loved
in the last days of his life.

I'm to tell you eight things about me that are not generally known which may be a bit hard
since I did this for another post earlier this year.  I looked for it but, thus far, haven't located
it so, forgive me, if there is repitition.

1 - My brother was born in Salzburg, Austria.  We lived there from the time I was three,
      until I was six-years-old.  My dad was an Army Infantry Lt. after the war.

2 -  I was named after Carmen Miranda.  My mother loved that Portuguese-born
       Brazilian singer, dancer, and Hollywood film star popular in the 1940s and 1950s.    

3 -  In my high school's powder puff football game, my senior year, I played left tackle.  I
       was tall and skinny and my nickname was "lanky."

4 -  I don't like sea urchin.  I've tried eating it several times but it still doesn't appeal to me.

5 - I just discovered the t.v. series, "Dexter" and I am an addict.  We don't get Showtime
     but I stayed up two nights in a row for twelve hours watching the first two seasons
     "live"  on Netflix, then ordered the next two seasons on disk.  I am almost tempted
      to get Showtime so I can watch season 5!  If you live near me and get Showtime,
      can I come over to your house and watch it with you?

6 - I love raw oysters.  I can finish off several dozen by myself, with a sauce of catsup,
      lemon juice and horseradish.  I am so hoping that the oysters weren't damaged
      by the leaking BP oil so that I can enjoy them during my visit to New Orleans.

7. - I am not a good swimmer.  As much as I like cruising, I prefer swimming in a pool
      to ocean swimming, because I don't swim well against waves, current, etc.  Also,
      I don't  like creepy, crawly things around my legs and body.

8 -  I have never had a moving violation for speeding, running a red light or anything
      of that kind.

My next challenge is to pass this award on to 8 other worthy bloggers. I do realize
that, very often, people do not wish to participate in this type of activity so please
speak up.  After much thought I have selected the following:

It may take me a day or two to get all the comments tallied and to have the drawing for
my blogaversary giveaway.  I want to thank everyone for participating!  I will contact you
with the winner's name as I will need a mailing address.


  1. Anonymous7:44 AM

    Hau'oli La Hanau my friend I hope your birthday is a good one. Thanks for sharing the information. I celebrated your birthday on my blog :)

  2. Happy birthday, Carmen! Thank you for sharing with us some of your travels and I wish you the best for the next one in New Orleans. Cheers!

  3. Happy Birthday my friend, your pictures are lovely and you have had such wonderful birthdays (well mostly) Have a great day.....:-) Hugs

  4. Happy Birthday, Carmen! When I first came upon your blog, I did wonder that--about whether you were named after the singer/actress. Now I know. :-)
    Su-sieee! Mac
    This and That. Here and There. Now, Sometimes Then.

  5. best wishes for much joy and a happy birthday

  6. What a memory-full life!

    Your header is fantastic.

    Lucy Corrander

  7. Happy Birthday Carmen. You've been blessed to have spent so many of my birthdays in such memorable places. I'm impressed by your people seem to make life long friendships with everyone you meet. I bet you make a fun companion on a trip. Loved reading your eight fun facts.

  8. What a nice review of past birthdays. You always look so happy!

  9. happy birthday Carmen, you look so beautiful and happy with the bouquet

  10. Happy Birthday, Carmen!! So, if your birthday is October 3, you share it with one of the nicest people I know, my brother Clint Davies, who has been my friend since he was born.

    Alberta, Canada

  11. Congratulations on the wonderful memorial day.
    The heart's-ease is happiness of the eternity.

    Thank you.

  12. I like all your travel photos, and many many more happy birthdays to come, Carmen!

    Congrats on the award also!

  13. I think that you look like Carmen Miranda, how wise of your mother to select that name. And I was interested that you are addicted to Dexter. A friend of mind is also addicted and is going to loan me the box set to watch. Thanks for taking part in this fun Carmen. Oh! and happy birthday!!

  14. Thanks for taking part in this bit of fun Carmen and happy birthday. I love the fact that you mum called you Carmen after Carmen Miranda because I think that you look like her. Sassy lady! And my friend is also addicted to Dexter and is going to lend me the boxed set. We have a show in the afternoon called "60 minute makeover" which I'm addicted to. I must be getting old!!