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Just got back from visiting the parents. Both are doing well, although my mom is still recovering from her broken hip.

Gotta say I love being retired. Had a few bad moments of "What have I DONE?" the day after my last day, but none since then. I'm not bored, and still feel like there aren't enough hours in the day for my hobbies and whatever. I highly recommend it.

Last day of work

This is my last day at the Lab where I've worked for over 28 years. The luncheon they gave me Wednesday was wonderful - I think everyone who was at the Lab that day came, and six people who had retired or left previously came. Two people gave me flowers. Our director rearranged his schedule to be there. Yesterday they had a small party at the office in addition and gave me a gift. My supervisor made a beautiful speech. Plus two certificates for my service, a certificate and card sent by the people in DC, and a special Department commemorative coin that's apparently hard to get. I'm so touched and flattered and feeling I don't deserve it that I'm sitting here crying. Suddenly it's hard to remember all the complaints and frustration that led me to make the decision to retire. Not that I regret it at all, it's time to go: my job is no longer what I want to do and will mostly not be needed in the future, and I want to have the time and energy for the other parts of my life. But right now it's very bittersweet.

Retirement countdown

Can't believe I have only one more week as a working woman. Five short days. I'm in a last minute rush to get things all wrapped up and my coworkers trained to replace me. People are giving me sad looks and guilt-inducing remarks about how things are going to fall apart without me and how lucky I am to be able to retire. (They'll be fine. No one is irreplaceable.) And my party is Wednesday.

How I'm keeping busy for the next couple of months: Catching up on doctor's appointments. As you get older, you acquire an increasingly long and obnoxious list of checkups and tests you're supposed to get regularly. I count 6, plus I need new glasses. Arg, and I need to go to the dentist. At the end of October I'm visiting my mother for a couple of days. And before I know it it'll be Christmas.

Wow, the airlines are charging extra for reserving a 'choice seat' now. What's next, pay toilets?

9-11 memories

On that day almost ten years ago one of my co-workers, J, who's betaed my writing from time to time, had a brother who got off the train for work at the WTC station every morning and a grandmother who lived in the immediate area. Here's her story of that tragic and unforgettable day:

Searching for loved ones, dust, and tears

Hurricane update

Thanks for the good wishes, guys! :)

So far there's nothing much to report, which is good. The wind is not nearly as bad as I expected, so I opened my windows during the night because it was so hot and stuffy inside. Right now the wind is coming from the East, and after the eye passes, which should be in the next hour or two, it should start coming from the West. Some of my windows face North and the others open onto a sort of courtyard between my building and the one behind it, so they're protected from direct wind. Power here hasn't been disrupted so far. It's been raining on and off all night but not terribly heavily.

I was stupid curious enough to step outside my building for a few minutes just now. The wind is gusty but not really strong at street level. All the stores are closed but there were a few people walking by, including a guy walking his dog who waved at me. The biggest danger was slipping on the wet floor as I came back in.

Spoke to both my parents last night and all they experienced was a windy, rainy day and a brief power outage. :)

ETA: Sure enough, the wind died down and then picked up speed coming from the other direction. I'm ridiculously excited that the eye of the storm passed over me or very close.

Hurricane Irene

The center of the hurricane is projected to pass over Long Island just to the west of where I live, very early tomorrow morning. Because of the size of the storm and the amount of rain we've already had this month, a lot of flooding and trees blown down are expected. People in near-sea-level areas have been ordered to evacuate today, and all of mass transit - subways, buses, commuter trains, Amtrak, the airports - are stopping service this afternoon. New York City is basically shutting down for the duration.

My parents in North Carolina are getting the worst of it right now - I'm concerned but they're fairly well inland and should be okay as long as they don't get hit by tornadoes, which are all too common there even without a hurricane. Arg. Hope they don't lose power, at least not for long.

Writer's Block: Scary movie

What is the scariest horror flick you’ve seen?

The Haunting - not the crappy remake, the 1963 original. It's not gory at all, and you don't actually see anything that's particulary scary on the surface, but the tension is so well built that it's quite intense.
Inspired by germankitty

I am Blue/White
I am Blue/White
Take The Magic Dual Colour Test - Beta today!
Created with Rum and Monkey's Personality Test Generator.</p>
I'm both orderly and rational. I value control, information, and order. I love structure and hierarchy, and will actively use whatever power or knowledge I have to maintain it. At best, I am lawful and insightful; at worst, I am bureaucratic and tyrannical.

Writer's Block: Live action hero

Which is your favorite or least favorite comic book-turned-movie?

Favorite: First X-men, the Spiderman series, first Superman, Thor, and Men in Black are all my favorites.

Least favorite: Again so many to choose from. Catwoman really stunk, so did Supergirl - I guess we all hate movies that 'ruin' our favorite characters. But probably the first Michael Keaton Batman, since it was such a popular movie but I hated it for (IMO) the miscasting, the rubber suit, and not being exactly like the silver age comics I grew up with. :(

Looking at this post - why are there no GOOD movies about a female superhero?

Overheard at work

Someone showed my supervisor the Wikipedia article on the lab where we work. He wanted to know who had authorized it. :D