Saturday, November 24, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

What a gorgeous day Thanksgiving turned out to be.  It was beautiful and crisp, 
sun shining and my youngest son, Jeremy, recovered from his liquid
celebration with his buddies the night before, decided he would drive.  That was
fine by me so I could take photographs as we whizzed along Interstate 80...that
is, we made good time as far as Fairfield when thing's slowed to a snail's pace.
The trip to West Sacramento, which normally takes two hours, was a tedious three
hour drive.  I kept thinking, though, at least we weren't driving on Indian roads,
dodging cows, camel carts, entire families on motorcycles, and monstrous 
potholes!  Ah, but I do miss India!

I picked Jeremy up at his San Francisco apartment building, near Japan Town,
about 11:30.  There were very few people out and about.   

Interstate 280 on my drive in from Daly City - not much traffic

Jeremy's apartment building - very quiet!

A few souls were playing tennis in the courts across the street and
dog walkers were reminded to pick up after their pets

San Francisco Victorian houses

A bit of traffic back up here

Heading over the Oakland Bay bridge - construction of the new
span is coming along

At the Carquinez Bridge toll booth

Ummm, a visit to the Napa Valley is in store soon!  Wine, wine, wine!

A little colorful foliage remains for me to enjoy!

I saw none in India so I was delighted!

So pretty...

Such nice scenery

A wonderful show for me

Isn't this tree a beautiful shape?


At last, we arrived at Laura and Alex's home ( my middle
son ) and, after 5 months away, my granddogs remember me!

Alex, 30 ( rear ) and Jeremy ( 28 ) in front

A wonderful red wine blend...I didn't even get the winery name...
we didn't wait for dinner to open it!

Alex, at the grill

Bucky loves the smell of the turkey on the grill!

Laura inherited my fine china and my mother's sterling silver

Checking out my detective friend's new Kimber semi-sutomatic pistol ( unloaded ).
He's promised to take me to a firing range to show me how to shoot.  I'm
not sure I want to do that.

Loaded or not, Bucky doesn't like it - guess he wouldn't make a
good police dog.

My baby - Jeremy, all 6'4" of him

My kind of Thanksgiving....I hardly had to do any work!

Always a lady, my granddog, Taffy

Beautiful Dawn Lockhart - my oldest son, Shawn, has
excellent taste

Did I hear food in my dog dish?

Alex's backyard at sunset

My first born, Shawn, 41, with his lovely lady, Dawn

Dawn, with her chihuahua, Chiquita

Look how sweet I am, Grandma...who ever got the idea that pit bulls are mean?

Borrowing Jeremy's 49er's cap & sipping wine to keep warm

Bucky &;Taffy are exiled to the rug when folks are having a 
meal at the table...don't they look pathetic?

Bucky took over Chiquita's carrier which gave us quite a laugh!

My two youngest - they are actually both 6'4" - they
played high school football - Alex played in college and
Jeremy was a decathlete in college

Poor Laura, a paramedic, worked a twelve hour shift on Thanksgiving day but the
feast had her touches, that's for sure.  I can't believe I didn't get any pictures of the
food.  That is so unlike me.  I guess I was just too focused on the eating.  Believe me,
all the food was divine.  I wanted my friends in India to get an idea of what Thanksgiving
was like & I left that out.  Oh, well, stay tuned for Christmas.

I hope everyone had a very special Thanksgiving with family and friends.  That's what
the day is all about, after all.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

For  most of this year past,
I’ve lived so far away,
But India is now remote,
I’m home for turkey day.

I am truly grateful,
For what India gave to me,
The gifts of love and friendship,
That will last eternally.

I’ve had such rich adventures,
For a lady past her prime,
And I trust that they’re not over,
Just on hold for a short time.

Now, I’ll celebrate with family,
And try not to gain a pound,
But it will be quite hard,
When Thanksgiving foods abound!

I give thanks to my Creator,
And ask His blessings far and near,
To every corner of this earth,
For those I love and hold most dear.

I offer special heartfelt thanks,
For next year will be so fine,
I’ll celebrate Thanksgiving,
With a first grandchild of mine!!

Carmen Henesy

Copyright © 2012 Carmen Henesy.
All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Amsterdam Airport Schipol - 11-18-2012

I arrived back in San Francisco after a very long journey which started at 5AM on
Thursday, November 15, in Jaipur ( actually still November 14 in San Francisco ).
At 6AM, my dear friend and constant rescuer, Ajay Shekhawat, of the Umaid Mahal
Hotel, arrived at my door with a large Bhati ( another wonderful friend ) taxi to see
me to the airport.  My landlady of five months, arrived with breakfast and my final
cup of chai so I was already in tears.  At the airport, bidding farewell to Ajay, the
deluge began again.  The armed security guard who checked my passport and
boarding passed asked why I was so sad.  "It's always this way when I say goodbyes
and I'm will miss India!", I told him.  "Then you'll be back," he smiled.  I sure hope

I spent a LONG day in Mumbai, arriving at the international airport at 7:30PM to 
check my bags for my 1:30AM flight.  I was told to return at 10PM.  I was back at
9PM and had to wait two hours for my wheelchair, requested a month earlier
when I'd made my reservation.  Awful.  I did complain to the Mumbai Customer 
Service supervisor ( a very nice Indian ) who waived all baggage charges for me,
sent me to the Delta First Class lounge where I ate and had a few cocktails, and
sat in Premium Economy to Amsterdam.  

Once there, I had a three hour layover which I didn't mind.  Amsterdam Airport
Schipol is one of my favorite places to connect.  It is about 5 miles from the city
of Amsterdam and is Europe's 4th busiest airport and the world's 14th busiest
by total passenger traffic.  It is built as one large single terminal with three 
large departure halls.  What I like about it is their incredible shopping complex -
duty free stores and bars and restaurants of every kind.  In my pre-retirement .  
days, I went crazy with purchases.  Now, on a pension, I had to content myself with
window shopping.  Everything was already beautifully decorated for Christmas.

I wasn't laughing too much, having just completed 9 + hours
of flying, with another 11+ hours in the air ahead of me!

Nice and bright to offset the gray skies outside!

As you can see, it isn't yet 8AM

But, in spite of the early hour, more alcohol was being served
than coffee!

Very festive decorations everywhere.

I wonder when these decorations went up?

I loved the delicatessan area and, of course, Dutch cheeses were for sale!

Yummy but too expensive and way too many calories, now
that I've lost 30 pounds!

Famous and delicious Edam cheese

Very tempting!

Ummm, proscuitto, sausages, and all that cheese - what a
sandwich I could make!

Okay, I confess, my ultimate weakness - MARZIPAN.  i
did buy some - but only a tiny package - & it was gone within an hour!

This might be good but I prefer to drink my Jack Daniels.

Of course, there were many Dutch gift specialties.

Always, one of my favorite shops - I tried several perfumes!

From reasonably priced Swatch watches to every name in the world

You could get ALL your holiday shopping done right here!

One of the most popular shops - every spirit imaginable!

Too tempting here and I was so broke!

All set up and waiting for Santa

Chocolates from every country - Santa, make mine dark chocolate -
better yet, marzipan covered with dark chocolate!