Friday, August 03, 2007

medicare birthday, 65

today i am an official geezer, medicare and all. last year's picture will have to do. i look much the same. the usual birthday at chez bums starts with a birthday card, then maybe a hike in some forest or along the shore, or maybe a day at home working in the garden. we end with a finer bottle of wine than we usually have and a meal at home. we don't do presents. well, whimsy is good.

imagine my surprise two days ago when robin spilled the beans that something, unnamed, was due in the mail for my birthday. she was concerned that it would not arrive by today. she asked if i really wanted to know what surprise she had arranged. i said no. surprise me. yesterday i picked up the mail. there was a package. i recognized the distinctive handwriting of a dear old friend even before i saw the name, and i knew what must be inside, because the package came from far australia .... down under. we were friends and lovers back in hippie days in the 70's in humboldt county, california, and have remained friends all these years. she moved to australia sometime in the 80's, and visited robin and me in california with her husband in the early 90's. time does roll on. i suppose this is a thing of the 00's.

mmmmmmmmmm ginger-lemon-lime marmalade !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i first got this at trader joe's and then at a local store in santa cruz called shopper's corner. when we moved north robin found an online distributor who would have a case delivered to our door. i have been eating this on toast in the morning almost every day for maybe ten years. two months ago when she tried to order more the distributor informed us that they are no longer importing it from buderim, australia. moving on, we found other ginger spreads, but none that were quite so tasty. so my wonderful robin, who even found a jar of crushed ginger to add to orange marmalade to replace my favorite morning spread, and it is pretty good, e-mailed my friend and conspired with her to give me a lovely present.

so i have a reprieve. three jars of reprieve. gift wrapped.

the image on the card is most assuredly not my friend. the text in the card says "so much for aging gracefully." she adds "was it really ever an option?"

here's another present. datil peppers. our internet pal florida cracker sent us seeds two years ago. i got them started too late last year for them to bear fruit. this year i was on it. i am proud to have the first datil peppers west of the mississippi. okay, i don't know that for sure.

the best present of all though is waking each morning and having tea and toast with my honey.


UPDATE.... 7 AM .........

robin's homemade bread with our respective spreads. raspberry jam for her. imported marmalade for me.

the update is actually today, august third. the main post was written yesterday evening. i had to change all the "tomorrows" to "todays" after i had written it, because of course it was intended for consumption today, as is the toast.


  1. 2007-08-03T16:08:21-05:00

    A very happy birthday to you.


    Happy birthday, roger. What a neat surprise, the best kind. The card is funny and I have another year and 2 months before I also join that group. I think it'll be different mainly for being on Medicare for the first time. I am not thrilled about that as it's an unknown


    thanks to you all. my best wishes to each on your own birth anniversary.

    kathy a--the last is the best.

    coffee messiah--glad to share them.

    bev--ain't it the way. only change is unchanging. i buy underwear once a year and it's always a crapshoot as the ones i liked last year are no longer available.

    sky--T J's stopped carrying it. maybe they could get it. we'll inquire.

    wren--the whimsy is great.

    AlwaysQuestion--thanks. your handle reminds me of "question the dominant paradigm!

    rcwbiologist--i seem to remember that double rainbow also has pumpkin ice cream.

    def59485--great quote. in my younger days i identified more with dean moriarty. robin, who serves as the memory here, reminds me that your wife has some sort of medical thing. we do hope all is ok.

    KathyR--it's not bad. kinda like old fart.

    Phil--baked yesterday. we awoke to drippy fog today.


    Rain--happy pre-birthday. i'll send postcards from the far side of 65.

  2. 2007-08-03T17:20:39-05:00

    Happy Birthday! I think you are aging about as gracefully as a person could be.
    I miss Shopper's Corner, and The Buttery, and, oh, don't get me started. I miss Santa Cruz, although it would never truly be home the way the PNW is. But between the farmer's market and Shopper's there really wasn't any need to shop anywhere else.


    Very, Merry, Happy Birthday!!! No, we really mean it this time! LOL MandT & Bodhi Dog


    birthday time! I hope it made you feel happy and loved.

    the ginger spread looks delightful.
    my beloved is a big fan of ginger too.

    i (also) got sentimental when i read "shoppers corner" (sigh) the creaky wood floors, and how nice everyone was.
    i always shopped at community foods, then way of live, then shoppers on the way out of town, when we lived in whitehouse canyon.



    way of LIFE, that is,


    No way you're 65; a very Happy Birthday to you, Roger! And many more years of wonderfulness for you guys.
    Your love of that marmalade is like mine for maple butter. I hide it...


    Molly--we'll visit sc to see friends and family, and marvel at how much worse the traffic has gotten even since we moved away in 2004.

    mandt--thanks to you and arf to bodhi.

    annie--hey, that was our shopping round too. many shoppers at the local coop here in pt look as tho they just beamed up from communityy foods.

    isabelita--flaunt your love for maple butter

    Yankee Transferred

    Happy birthday, Roger. It is also the birthday of my perfect sister, to whom I posted a tribute today. She's 57. I think the thing I love best of all is that your favorite thing is being with Robin. Blessings on both of your heads.

  3. 2007-08-03T20:19:49-05:00

    Happy Birthday ya old geezer! I never knew 65 could look so young and fun - you are leading the way for many of us!


    I really like your blogs, I found it by accident a while ago when I was looking up the book Dharma Bums, which is my absolute favorite book,to the point where Im getting the name tatooed on me, but I like all your blogs and hope you don't stop posting! Peace & Light


    Happy Bday! Mmm, that marmalade sounds good. Next year tell Robin to make it for you LOL. :)


    Yankee Transferred--my best wishes to your sister.

    tdharma--good thing there are those ahead leading me.

    Neil--welcome to chez bums. i like your self portrait.

    Rurality--i may try that. or make it myself. ;)

    Musings from Myopia

    Happy Birthday, Roger! I say geezerhood is a good thing, though I'm a few years behind...and hoping I'm fortunate enough to catch up. Geezerhood is, in my way of thinking, achieved when one "achieves adequate age and eccentricity." I suspect you actually got there years ago, like I did. Enjoy the imported delicacies!


    And now as it has slipped past midnight and I just got home from work, I get to wish you a belated Happy Birthday!

    May I somewhere acquire half your wit and talents in the next 14 years!



    Musings from Myopia--i have been eccentric for a while. still working on maturity.

    alan--as i'm only a half-wit i wish you at least twice my measure.


    Happy Birthday! Aargh, and blow me down! 65! May the wind always fill your sails, and treasure fill your hold.


    I meant that I hide my maple butter, but I am also discreet about eating it, so as not attract the attention of predators...


    Happy happy birthday, Roger. Late. It sounds as though Robin continues to love you in all the right ways. Lucky you, with your datil peppers! I think I have seeds waiting for me in Florida- can't wait to get them growing.


    I see that Robin treated you even more gingerly on your birthday than usual.


    uh oh, note to self ... get Vicki's seeds in the mail!

    happy birthday roger you ol' pirate!
    i was totally stoked to hear it was your birthday, but then to see a plump, perfect datil pepper growing in the pacific northwest ... i'm getting misty here.

    way to go gardener! do let us know what you think of the flavor and heat.

    that's a way cool caring lady you have there buddy.

  4. 2007-08-05T15:15:20-05:00

    SBGypsy--thanks matey.

    isabelita--don't let them get your maple butter.

    vicki--good luck. my plants grew from year old seeds.

    bonnie--and sweetly and tartly all at once.

    FC--she is great. how big do datils get?


    that datil looks ready. we mostly use them green although they will ripen to a nice orangeyyellow sometimes with purple haze :) around the top.
    i don't think size matters, they are variable ... anywhere from an inch to two inches when mature.
    use it anyway you want, but it only takes one or two to flavor a soup or chicken and rice dish like pilau. like most peppers, the heat is in the seeds so if you like the flavor, but not the heat, seed it before you cook.
    a word of warning ... if you seed it, wear gloves ... and whatever you do, DO NOT SEED IT BAREHANDED AND THEN GO TO THE BATHROOM OR RUB YOUR EYES.

    a real simple use for them is to stuff a bottle full of them and pour in vinegar. let it sit for a month or so and then dribble it on whatever you wish.


    Happy birthday! That homemade bread looks wonderful.


    Roger, are you going to have any datil seeds to share after this harvest? I'm sure I have something swappable.