The Aluminum Asylum

The Aluminum Asylum
Our home on wheels

Monday, March 12, 2007

Monday….the day after….

Our first dinner party last night was a success. The shrimp feast definitely is something we will do again. We had the garlic (Dennise’s version of) shrimp dejohne, fried and boiled shrimp, the colonel’s coleslaw (why waste the time when his is way better?) French fries, corn on the cob, French bread and of course, any beverage your little heart desired. We had cheese and crackers plus some chips for appetizers and sat around and shot the breeze for about 45 minutes before Paulie and I got to cooking. We had everything prepared ahead of time, and the two deep fryers preheated and ready to go. It did get a bit hot in the kitchen with both fryers, and the oven baking the shrimp, but it wasn’t too bad. When we get back in the fall we will have a ceiling fan installed in the kitchen. It really helps keep the heat down. Everyone (except me and the chef) had seconds and even thirds. So I guess everyone liked our cuisine. After some quick clean up, chef Paulie and I joined our guests on the patio and talked. Soon, Marion and Aloha who sold us the house stopped by to chat. Slowly as the hour grew late, everyone went home. It was a great first party. I’m glad everything went so well.

Of course, after helping clean house, food prep, cooking and serving yesterday, my day today was spent in the damm bed. Every bone in my body was screaming. There was a terrible rain storm that hit the valley, and some places east of here and South Padre Island had 8.5” of rain. Poor spring breakers…they must have gotten washed out to sea…its Texas universities week this week. Poor Texans!

As the days continue to march towards spring, more of our neighbors, Winter Texans as we are called, are heading home. Most of the Iowa folks have been putting off going home, along with the Minnesota and Wisconsin folks. Why go home to snow when the weather is absolutely perfect here? The Canadians are also leaving in dribs and drabs…they have a longer trip and most of them make lots of side trips so it takes them 4 to 6 weeks to get home. Paul and I will probably leave the first week of April. We figure we will take our time…may a week or so. The weather back in central Illinois has been getting better.

Zack has moved into his new room at Cougar Village apartments. For those unaware, Zack resigned his RA position. Apparently he had a misunderstanding about the time he was to give a presentation to the RA staff. He said he double checked with his boss to confirm the time and his boss goofed. (Being a former boss myself, bosses generally do not admit mistakes. It must have been the underling’s misinterpretation of the facts or instructions, right?) So rather than risk one more screw up after this major one, he decided to resign rather than make another small booboo (like missing a deadline on paperwork or some such minute thing) and get fired. He would not get a referral or be able to use his almost two years as an RA on his resume if he got fired. So to cut his losses (a typical Zack reaction) he resigned. Of course, leaving with only two months left irked the crap outta me (who can’t make it two months?) and his father. But, it is his decision and he was determined NOT to lose what he feels is a very good referral and part of his leadership skills on his resume, he took the road he felt most comfortable with. Now, the downside to his is he (I should say Paul and I) need to come up with $700 to pay for the balance of the board. The school will NOT allow him to live off campus; he was required to stay in University housing. Crap. To his credit, he went out and got not one job, but two jobs. He is a bouncer at a country western bar (good $) and he is also working at a putt putt miniature golf place inside Union Station in St. Louis. Kind of a far drive, but he is learning management skills as he will open the place and the owner is willing to work around his school schedule. He will be attending summer classes and already has an apartment lined up. This will be the place Greg will share with him for their senior year. It will cost about $400 per kid for rent and utilities…wait until they can’t access Cougarnet for free….that will be another amount they will have to come up with for high speed internet and of course, food. I will admit that both Greg and Zack can cook and have done plenty of experimentation in my kitchen. They both better learn not to be slobs and clean up after themselves according to my recollection. Plus they like steak…hmmm, wonder how many times they will be eating steak as poor college students. Hey nothing like real life to prepare one to grow up right? When I was 18 and living on my own, NOT going to school I had many a dinner of peanut butter and crackers. Paul remembers eating tomato soup made with water and oyster crackers and Kraft mac and cheese for 14 cents a box from an Aldi type store. Makes one appreciate things more I guess.

This week is doctor week for grandpa. Blood work as his new beautiful senorita doc thinks he may be borderline something. Then he goes to the urologist for a check and an appointment for this next PSA test/shot.

We are planning grandpa’s 90th birthday party for March 24th. We posted a RSVP so we know how much cake to buy. We will have a very popular valley singer here for entertainment. We will only buy the cake, everyone is bringing their own beverages and chairs. I hope we get lots of people…grandpa says that he has never had a birthday party. Right. He’s probably had so many, he can’t remember them all…he’s like the odometer on an old car…once it reaches 100,000 miles it turns back to zero! Like the guy on the cruise ship said…grandpa’s first job was busboy at the Last Supper. Tooooo funny.

Well, I am going to join Paulie out on the patio…the rain has cooled things down and its really beautiful outside.



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