Hi my name is HP and I am a consumer

I'm probably not that much different from ya'll. I login, check my email, surf some blogs, catch up on some celebrity gossip, check some more blogs. Then I check my email again, just to be sure I don't miss anything. You know, like a really good email from Orbitz or something.

If it's the weekend, I go on a walk or a bike ride. Most likely I collapse in a heap on the sofa and graze some catalogues, leaf through some magazines. Maybe read a chapter or two from a novel. Then if I'm really bored, I'll turn on the tube and graze through the fantastic five: TLC, Discovery, HGTV, FoodTV and E! If I get hooked on I Love the 90's or 80's or a fantasy fest of the Girls Next Door, forget about it. My day is done. I am glued until I fall asleep or have a snack and then fall asleep.

So, in reality, I can create. But mostly I consume. Yep, I am a consumer. No fantastic artwork, no magazine article, no outstanding first novel. I guess it's not that big a deal. Most people are 100 percent consumers. It ticks through my brain occasionally....most likely because I used to create. It was my job, I got paid to do it. But I did things, there is a record of things I did. There are even a few "monuments" to my creation.

Isn't it funny how things cycle through your brain? Maybe it's because Thursday is a "blue moon" or maybe because it's the beginning of Summer. Who knows? What do you think??


mountain bikes are cool too!

3 weeks ago DD and I go on a quick bike ride. It was clear and windless. It's probably a bit cold too, I actually wear pants over my cycling shorts. We need to be outside on a bike so badly that we go despite the cold. My knee has been "acting up" so I take it pretty easy. Everything is good until the way back. We hit just the tiniest bit of a slope, a bit of a head wind and I drop way back. I actually beg DD to let me draft for the rest of the ride.

No stamina or endurance. My knee feels strangely weak and a little bit wobbly. When I stand up to pedal I feel SHARP pain. Not a good combination on my 2007 Inaugural Outdoor Bike Ride.

(Insert Wayne's World "funny, way back, remember when sound...dodooloodo....dodooloodooo...here)

Cut back to May last year. My knee was sore, swollen and would not bend past 90 degrees. Stairs were a bitch. Sleeping on my back or stomach was uncomfortable.....you get the idea, it's not a pretty.

I marched off to my orthopaedic "surgeon". We Xrayed, we MRI'd. Diagnosis was that I had arthritis under my patella and that was the cause of the pain and swelling. The course of action was to rest, let pain be my guide and all it would all eventually "go away".

I rest. I baby it. I ice it. Then I train during late summer and fall. DD and I complete El Tour de Tucson. Then we get the real training bug and start intervals with the evil Coach Troy in January. Somewhere in Jan or Feb, I do something to my knee. It swells up like some horrible alien sucking the life from what was formerly my knee. I stop training.

Time for a 2 nd Opinion. Lets just start by saying that Dr. Wayne is the bomb. I have a diagnosis I trust. I am getting physical therapy. My knee seems to be improving a tiny bit every day. What's really up with my knee? When I bend it, my patella ends up on the Outside the joint. So in other words, my knee cap is not "tracking" right.

I need something easy to do, something pain free. But I crave the sweat and endorphins of a tough work out. I remember my sweet, beat up but friendly mountain bike. We go for the same ride that was unsuccessful 3 weeks ago and it is a huge success. 10 miles today! The only pain is that of unused muscles in my legs and a few twinges on my "sit bones".


Sometimes a little change of scenery, a change of equipment, and some targeted therapy is all that you need to get rollin' again.


secret getaway #369

Yay, I love surprises! DD took me for a little getaway weekend to Mercer County, PA. OK, I probably would not have gone had I known it was in Mercer....but it really was marvelous.

We had planned to go visit Mom of DD and Howdy and hang out for some family time. The night before, I was planning on crashing early in my own bed. Then up early and drive to Piksburke.
That's not exactly what happened.

On Friday, we went to Sharon, PA and checked into a fabulous B & B. It is a huge stone mansion right on the main drag. DD had reserved the Tropical Nights room. It was a lovely room with a huge hot tub in the room, a luxurious bath and fantastic view of the gardens and conservatory.

While enjoying our champagne reception, the host, Amy was kind enough to call and order our dinner. Two antipasta salads and pepperoni pizza from Aldo's, which we ate in our room with glasses of red wine. Very romantic. Very relaxing.

Wonderful night's sleep in a huge four poster bed with one thousand pillows....a huge breakfast of steak and eggs, omelettes and fresh fruit all topped off by a huge pot of coffee. I spent about an hour in the spa steaming and sauna-ing and then having an invigorating "monsoon" shower. Why it is always so pleasant and easy to get cleaned up in a spa? Probably because you don't have to take any "get ready" items of your own. Also because there is no possible way I can be distracted by needing to scrub the tub, throw in another load of laundry or clean the cat box while I perform my ablutions. I love having no distractions!

Now, if the mansion B & B, the pizza dinner and fabulous spa are not enough, just wait for the this.

Sharon is home to Duffin's Chocolate AND the World's Largest Shoe Store. As a matter of fact, the B & B is situated in between these two fabulous attractions. Heaven, absolute Heaven! DD and I practiced some retail therapy. We bought about 3 pounds of assorted hand made chocolate and a pound or two of "penny candy". Then we were off to Reyer's from some much anticipated shoe shopping. Somehow we got away with only buying 3 pairs of shoes....one pair for me and two for DD.

In a nutshell, I find Mercer County surprising exciting, scenic with some serious doses of history and antiques. If Sharon was without the shoe store and chocolate shop, I'd probably still go back. With them, additional visits are ensured!!

Maybe even the occasional sales trip to Sharon is warranted. It is in my sales territory!!