August 30, 2009


Posted in Uncategorized at 12:53 pm by cliopatra


Originally uploaded by cherylrw

“Will you walk into my parlour?” said the Spider to the Fly,
‘Tis the prettiest little parlour that ever you did spy;
The way into my parlour is up a winding stair,
And I’ve a many curious things to shew when you are there.”
Oh no, no,” said the little Fly, “to ask me is in vain,
For who goes up your winding stair can ne’er come down again.”

— The Spider and the Fly, Mary Howitt

We have an enclosed lanai, and earlier this summer a spider much like this one created a very impressive web on the outside northwest corner, stayed for a couple of weeks, and then disappeared. Irish tore down the web while mowing.

A few weeks later another of the same kind of spider created another web at the other end of the lanai. She got very large, and then disappeared. She’s been gone for a week or so.

Earlier this week this spider created a new web at the northwest corner of the lanai. She weaves and weaves, and then she sits and waits, which is what she was doing when I came out to take her picture.

The web is probably 4 feet wide and 6 feet long. She is perhaps 4 inches in diameter. I considered putting something up next to her so you could see the comparison, but it was hard enough getting up close enough with the macro lens to get her detailing.

She is stunning, isn’t she?


July 24, 2006


Posted in Florida, Marriage at 4:07 am by cliopatra

Good grief, it’s been a long time.  Sorry about that.  I’ve been trying out other blogging venues and ended up staying on Xanga, although I haven’t been blogging there either.  I’ve been much too busy.

In case you were wondering what’s been going on”

  • My boyfriend is no longer my boyfriend.
  • He is, however, my husband. 
  • As of 7/14/06
  • 10 days of wedded bliss as of today
  • It was a civil ceremony, just us.  Perfect.
  • Work is still good.
  • I get promoted August 1.
  • In the meantime I am training two people to replace me.
  • I’ve been training them for a month now.
  • I thought the first two weeks of training them was going to kill me.
  • Luckily, it didn’t.
  • I got a movie review published in a newsletter for an organization I belong to.
  • It was nice to see my name in print.
  • That was last month and I haven’t found time to write anything since.
  • Not time, motivation.
  • We’ve been working our way through Buffy the Vampire Slayer on DVD.
  • We’re halfway through season six.
  • I’ll miss it when it’s over.

That’s it for now.  I need to get ready for work.  Bye!

April 9, 2006

It’s official

Posted in Beach, Florida at 7:12 am by cliopatra

I have my first sunburn since moving to Florida.

Normally when I go to the beach it’s for a walk, so I wear shorts or capris and a T-shirt and walk along the water’s edge. Yesterday I went with a coworker and her two kids, and we wore bathing suit and went swimming and everything.

We were there a little less than two hours. I reapplied sunscreen once, but I’m not sure it’s such great sunscreen. Next time I’m going to go with the old standby and see how I fare.

It’s not too bad of a burn, it’s just oddly splotchy. We both used that sunscreen that you spray on, but she is one of those people that actually tans. Grrrrrr…

It was a nice time. The sun was out, but the wind was up so it didn’t really get hot. We went swimming once with the kids, then came out to sit and people watch. While we were out I noticed six dolphins just past the Naples pier having a grand old time.

They were out there awhile, and eventually started moving in closer to the beach. I decided to go swimming and see how close they would get, but the closest one got was about 100 yards from me. That was still pretty cool, because they were leaping completely out of the water.

Last night Irish and I went to the beach so I could see the high tide. It was so peaceful there. I love the sound of the ocean at night, lapping against the shore.

After the beach yesterday I went to this farmers market Irish had told me about. We had stopped at once outside Ft. Myers last weekend where the prices caused me to run scream from the building. They were also completely out of the only thing I would have even considered buying from there: Key limes.

So this little farmers market was cute. It included a wine shop and a fresh meat counter. The prices were very good. They also had sliced up pieces of fruit in baskets in front of the displays so you could sample what you were buying. Very nice.

I bought strawberries, kiwi, plums, an avocado (for salad last night – and it was amazing) and a bottle of key lime juice, since they didn’t have actual key limes in stock. Oh, also a Coca Cola Blak, since I was intrigued and it was the first place I’ve seen it being sold. That stuff is disgusting.

Last night we had pork chops, salad with avocado, potato pancakes and key lime pie for dessert. The pie was sooooooo good. My secret? If the recipe calls for 1/2 c of lime juice, put in at least 3/4 c.

We’re off to the inlaws today so that Irish can prune back some trees and I can swim in their lovely heated pool. I hope your weekend is going well.

February 26, 2006

Update, Finally

Posted in Uncategorized at 10:07 am by cliopatra

Not that anyone’s waiting or anything… lol

The work week went well.  I finally got over the hump of learning the basics of their procedures up there, and I feel much more confident.  They used to give me a huge stack of paperwork for processing (part of my training) and I’d have questions on over half of it.  Now I have questions on 2 or 3 things.

Thursday night Irish and I went and had dinner with his parents.  They are both nice.  His dad had a stroke a while back and has some trouble speaking, but he seems to be quite a ham and loves having me as a new audience.  I don’t mind.

Friday night we went to a charity event and had a great time.  The charity was for a scholarship fund and I think we raised about $500 just having a trivia contest.  Afterwards about 15 of us went to a Mexican restaurant in Ft. Myers for dinner and lots of laughter.  Nice people.

Yesterday was all about errands.  I went to the library and found out they have a writing group on Saturday mornings.  Then I went to scope out the location of the DMV to get my license switched over.  Then I went to Wal-Mart and bought a bunch of groceries. 

Almost forgot – we spent Saturday morning online planning a trip to Disney World in August!  Woot!

Last night we just had a quiet night in.  We ate tortellini.  We went for a walk around the neighborhood.  We stayed up late online (him studying base riffs and me reading blogs).

Tonight is maybe steaks and sunset at the beach (assuming the clouds go away.. it’s raining right now).

Time to start getting the laundry together.

February 15, 2006

Things I Love

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:13 pm by cliopatra

1.  My Boyfriend

He made me dinner on Valentine’s Day:  New York Strip grilled to perfection, baked potato, and Very Veggie salad with ranch dressing.  For dessert:  he found a double layer chocolate cake with chocolate pudding between the layers, white chocolate on the corners, and the word “Princess” on the top in powdered sugar.  That’s what he calls me, Princess.  It was perfect.

2.  My New Job

No one yells at me.  Everyone is so nice!  They place such a premium on teaching and learning.  Despite the fact that I don’t know everyone’s names, that when I come back from the bathroom I often get lost and end up in an empty cubicle, and I still don’t have my own desk, I feel like I’ve been there forever.  This company wants only the best people, and everyone there feels like they are in elite company.  No one questions your qualifications for being there.  If you are there, you’re obviously tops.  It’s nice to feel so welcomed.

3.  My New Home

The weather in Florida is amazing.  I love all of this sunshine.  Did I mention my office is less than a mile from the beach?  Oh, yeah.  The traffic here sucks, but with the sun shining on you most of the time, who cares?

I’m waiting to do a full-blown blog when I have more time.  Right now I’m just enjoying settling in, spending time with Irish, and learning my way around.

I’m a happy, happy girl.

February 2, 2006

My Last Day, Yet Not My Last Day

Posted in Moving at 2:21 pm by cliopatra

I’m supposed to be here tomorrow at the office, but my schedule says otherwise, so I ain’t comin’ in.

Today has been spent enjoying lunch at Bahama Breeze, transferring files to my home office server, and otherwise eradicating personal junk off my computer here.  My boss has virtually ignored me all week, which means he’ll want to dump on me tomorrow, but see paragraph 1.

I’m moving!  To Florida!  This weekend!

We should arrive at the apartment Monday morningish and unload the truck.  Maybe even return the truck.

Tuesday, my beloved will go back to work and I, unemployed sloth that I am, will spend the day working on my “I just moved here” sunburn by the pool.  Oh, yes.

Wednesday, I will stay indoors cursing the sun.  I may even apply at a temp agency in case I don’t get hired right away.

Thursday and Friday will be spent interviewing.

Next weekend I meet the inlaws.  Woot!

Let’s get this show on the road!

January 31, 2006


Posted in Work Sucks at 2:05 pm by cliopatra

I’m at work right now, and so flipping bored.

Two and a half weeks ago I gave my notice.

For the past two and a half years my boss on the East Coast has called me multiple times a day, pretty much driving me insane.  Suddenly, it’s like he has no use for me.

Before I gave my notice I got some projects ready for him, since I knew he would be panicked.  I also had a few files on my desk.

It’s been dead around here for a few weeks.  We’re in the interim lull, so it’s nice to be able to get caught up on things.  I really thought, though, that I would be extremely busy right now with a bazillion projects for him.

The past two weeks have been kinda blah.  Last Friday he called and told me that he needed my associate to really step up, so we made the decision here for me to pass on all of my stuff to him with instructions, and I would be in an advisory/training capacity this week.

I sit here with no files on my desk.  He is methodically working through everything I gave him.  He has very few questions.

During that same boss call on Friday, my boss told me that I would be very busy this week designing an ad for April/May.  He also was going to scan a bunch of papers from his desk for me to handle (meaning I would attach instructions and pass them on to my associate.

Yesterday, my boss didn’t get in until 1 p.m. his time.  He called me around 3 p.m. my time and told me a couple of things, not the least of which was “the program will run itself” which made me laugh, since the program has been run entirely by me for the past two and a half years and he has NO IDEA how much work it generates.  I am severely overworked and underpaid.

One of the other things he said was that he had a 4-6 inch stack of paper on his desk he would scan to me.  He also mentioned something about the ad.  He said all of this would happen today.

I spent yesterday reading blogs and messing around online.  Today I cleaned out personal items from my desk and took a long lunch, read some more blogs and cleaned out my favorites from Internet Explorer and e-mailed them to myself at home.

He has not called, nor has he scanned me anything (believe me, I check every 15 minutes).  I’m not even sure he’s in the office over there.

I am not going to call over there and stir up trouble.

I just feel like my time is being wasted.  I mean, I *am* being paid, despite the fact I’m sitting here doing nothing.  Lord knows I deserve it for all the hard work and frustration and tears the past few years. 

I’m just so damn bored!

And it begs the question that if the program is supposedly losing money (told to my associate by the company head when I announced I was leaving) and the program can also “run itself” — how long was I going to have a job here anyway?

In other news, I have the most wonderful boyfriend/fiance on the planet.  He really just makes me feel like I hit the lottery.

January 27, 2006

Work is… Fun?

Posted in Work Sucks at 3:21 pm by cliopatra

Actually, work is boring at the moment.

I got so far ahead I’ve been pretty much twiddling my thumbs for the last two weeks. Only one more week to go!

My associate and I went out for lunch today, and while we were there my boss called. He wanted to make sure my data is going to be transferred before I leave.

He also thinks my associate is an idiot, and wants to make sure I train him as much as possible before I leave. In a week.

So I came back to the office and formulated my master plan. What is it? I’m so glad you asked.

For the next week, I will be doing absolutely nothing, aside from training him. That’s it. He will be performing all of my job functions under my watchful direction.

Step one was to move the printer/copier/fax to his computer so that he can scan and fax to his heart’s content. So far so good.

Step two is to look at what’s on my desk and type step by step instructions on how to make these things happen.

The rest we will deal with as we go.

Yes, my associate is pretty much an idiot. He’s being demoted to an administrative capacity (at full pay and benefits, natch) and he has no clue what to do as an administrator.

They won’t be hiring anyone to replace me, I can guarantee it. This place is going to go to hell in a fiery handbasket with one of those little bicycle bells on it. Quickly, too.

In the meantime, I will impart as much knowledge as I can (though I can see it bounce off him and hit the ground, but whatever). Then I am out of here.


January 25, 2006

Knowledge is Power

Posted in Roommate Blues at 7:29 am by cliopatra

I had round two with the roommate last night.  She decided that since I got to spill my guts to her the other night, last night she would return the favor.

We’ve been best friends since I was 15 and she was 16.  That’s nearly 19 long years, with a couple of breaks in between.

I want her to like the man I’m going to marry.  Why wouldn’t I?

She was engaged several years ago and I just adored the guy she was with.  The guy who is pursuing her now, I think this one is top notch.

I was so upset last night after she and I talked.  I just had this pounding headache, and I kept thinking how it’s only 10 more days until I’m gone and I will be so relieved.

I talked to my boyfriend about it, and he got me thinking back.  Which one of my boyfriends got her stamp of approval?

The short answer is:  none of them.

Seriously, not one.

I guess what that means is I’m looking for something that (a) I’m never going to get or (b) doesn’t exist anyway.

It made me feel better to know that it’s not him she doesn’t like.  It’s a generalized dislike of everyone I date.

January 24, 2006

And just like that…

Posted in Moving, Work Sucks at 3:01 pm by cliopatra

And just like that…

We’ve turned the corner.

A few pieces of good news today. 

1)  One of the other issues bothering me on Sunday has been somewhat resolved.  Not completely, but we’re moving in the right direction finally.

2)  The company controller for my current company called yesterday to offer me COBRA coverage and I turned it down, since the cost is extremely prohibitive.  He took it almost personally!  Then he called today and since I will be working 2/1 and 2/2 here, they are going to pay my insurance through the end of February.  Since I’m part of the Blue Cross Blue Shield network, it will even work in Florida!

3)  Q went home at lunch to meet the plumber to get an estimate on the repairs to the shower, which has been limping intermittently for the past couple of weeks.  Turns out it was a broken gasket on the cold water side, so he replaced it for a nominal fee and all is well.

4)  The weather here is warm and decidedly not windy.  I’m needing it to hold out another week and a half until we get on the road.  I’d rather not be loading a U-haul in freezing rain or snow.

5)  My boss is still being nice to me.  I’m fairly certain that the real boss has been snatched by aliens, something for which I will always be grateful.

6)  My brother (the youngest one) stopped by and commented on the blog, which reminds me I need to start getting some links together.

That being said, I have the sniffles and I need a nice cuppa hot tea and possibly a nap.  Q has class tonight, soi I will probably snuggle up on the couch in my pjs and watch a few things on the DVR.

Packing in earnest begins this weekend!


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