Thought I’d drop a line

Dear, I thought I’d drop a line
The weather’s cool
The folks are fine
I’m in bed each night at nine
PS I love you

Billie Holiday

Salut, Marc!

Trust you and Heidi made it home safely and that you’ve settled back into your routine. Thought of you today while I was at the pool. I was there alone. The temperature was only about 59 degrees – though laying in the sun with a pullover on it didn’t feel uncomfortable at all. I actually went for a swim afterwards. The pool is heated as I am sure you know. What made it a challenge was the north wind whenever my head was above water.

The agenda today was about as exciting as any day – which is to say, not very. I had a haircut at 10:30 am this morning. I go to a salon in one of the old malls along Gulf of Mexico Drive, same place I frequented last year. The stylist is a stout chap named Michael. He tolerates my trespass upon his professional territory. I know better than to tell stylists what I what them to do but I persist nonetheless. My reasoning is that nature has expropriated everything else so I intend to get whatever mileage remains of my hair! The project today was basically longer on the top, shorter on the sides. It’s an old fashioned cut, the sort of thing that was popular in the 1930s. I told Michael to forget the blowdryer and just tousle my hair with some goo. He chose what is called a paste. It worked. Earlier when I had been at CVS on my way to the hair cut appointment I had bought some paste of my own. When I had long hair last year I normally used Crew products. CVS is dynamic in the salon hair department. I found an exotic yellow and brown tub (the colour of an over-ripe banana) called “Sonny’s Original Surf Paste” which is described as a matte hair styling paste enriched with Hawaiian black lava, sea salt and sea kemp. It smells good enough to eat! And, yes, it is UV protecting! The retailers really know what they’re doing. It’s a good thing I require reading glasses otherwise I might have read the fine print on the back to see what it’s really composed of. Not that I care. At my age there are few remaining indulgences so if this absurdity qualifies as an innocent pleasure, let it roll!

As I write I am listening to Bill Evans (remastered naturally). I have already exhausted my interest in Christmas music – though I had a good laugh this morning hearing “Christmas in Kentucky” by The Roustabouts on a “Rare Vintage” album – no kidding! Anyway what makes a difference on this otherwise rambling tale of music is that I am listening to it though my hearing aid (I have only one, for my right ear). The other day when I was listening to something – in the usual way with my unobstructed ears – through my new Bose Micro SoundLink (which by the way I adore), I wandered into my bedroom to collect my hearing aid before going for a bicycle ride. To my astonishment as a left the room (with the hearing aid connected to my right ear) I discovered the music was being piped into the hearing aid. Upon returning to my computer (next to which I keep the SoundLink) I then became aware that the sound no longer went through the SoundLink speaker but only through my hearing aid! Imagine! I then examined the iPhone (from which my music was being directed to the SoundLink) and found that in the Settings, Accessibility, Hearing Aids (yes, Hearing Aids!), there appeared “Bill’s hearing aid – Connected“. In the interest of full disclosure I should add that when I bought the hearing aid early last summer I installed an App called “Signia myControl” which the audiologist must have helped me align with my iPhone but I had since forgotten about it. The truth is that I seldom wear the hearing aid; I find the sound too bright for the most part. I know I could adjust it but it’s a pain.

Shortly after noon today I went bicycling to fulfill my constitutional need for 15kms of easy exercise. One must expiate one’s guilt! While passing one of the resorts along the way I smelled barbecued meats. At breakfast this morning in an effort to loose some weight I had forgone my usual walnuts swimming in maple syrup. The result was that I was pining for a culinary reward! When I got back to the condo I told Denis I had to go to Publix to buy some sausages, hamburgers and filet mignon to prepare a mixed grill. He’s cooking them now (he’s the chef in the family). We’ve both made large salads to accompany this protein treat.

One last bit of news – I tried to get the car washed at the local gas station but the automatic device is down. Apparently a hose burst. The station is not up to the standard one might prefer on Longboat Key but given the dearth of activity here for half the year it is understandable.

Best wishes to you and Heidi for the New Year!


PS Below is a copy of the Frederick S. Coburn painting I told you about.