17 Years and Counting

If you’d have asked Gerry and me 2 years ago – which I don’t think anyone would have done – “What do you think you’ll be doing for your 17th wedding anniversary?” We wouldn’t have had an answer.

Two years ago Gerry was having his stem cells harvested, he was days away from his transplant, and I was days away from leaving for the south of France (nice wife, huh?)

This summer we celebrated the 2nd year anniversary of being told that Gerry had – most likely (although no one knew for sure) about 1-1/2 years.

And today he’s going strong. Lots of pain, smoldering disease, but he’s here and active!

So today we celebrated our anniversary by having a roasted chicken, asparagus, cous cous and a peach thing I baked with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Isn’t 17 the asparagus anniversary?

And we luxuriated in the gift of a boring evening.

When Life Gives You Crap Apples..?
And I also made some jelly! I have never – as an adult – canned food. My mom used to can – she made canned tomatoes & ketchup every fall, and she made jelly and jam whenever she felt like it.

But we have this crab apple tree that keeps dropping fruit – this year it’s bigger and rounder than I remember it being last year – so I thought I’d use it for one of my mom’s favorite jellies, crabapple.

I remember that she used to toss other fruit in, too, to sweeten it up. So I threw in some nectarines and another secret ingredient that I’m not going to mention in case it ruins the whole thing and I’m shamed publicly.

Feel free to guess.

Guess What? I have a COLD!
I can’t get rid of my current cold, I’ve had it for 10 days now. I finally broke down and visited the doc because we’re flying on Tuesday and he gave me antibiotics because I tend to rush toward bronchitis like the mail train.

Day 2 and cold’s still here – but I did feel well enough to ride my bike today, which tired me out but made me feel very wonderful.

…and speaking of bikes…
I’m afraid of missing my daily bike ride while in the UK for 3 weeks, so I’ve arranged to rent a folding bike from a place in London (I rode a folding bike in Paris and loved it!)

I looked and looked for a used bike I might buy on various UK used item lists, but could find NOTHING that was remotely affordable, or tall enough.

Also, if I did find a used bike to buy (and sell or give away before I left) I’d still have the problem of a bike rack. Not a problem with the folding bike!

So here’s my plan: We arrive at Heathrow around noon, put our heavy luggage in our rental car and move it short term parking. Then we’ll take the underground to the bike place and pick up the folding bike. Then we’ll return to Heathrow to pick up our rental car and head North.

Anyone have any better suggestion? I’m open to hearing them! Once we have the rental car, is there a really good place to park it that’s closer to the city so our trip in and out will be shorter? I could use your advice – So…

If you know of a decent used bike that would fit a 5’10” woman (me) which I could buy to use while I’m in the UK (AND if you also know of a bike rack for our car…)

If you know of a good bike rental place closer to Heathrow than the central London place I’ve found…


If you have a better idea of how to get our (heavy) luggage in our rental car and get us to central London to pick up the bike and then back on the road than what I’ve laid out above…

I would LOVE to hear your advice!

I will be a very sad woman if I can’t ride my bike every now and then while I’m on the road. What will I do without my little knight AND my bike rides?


The jelly “took” – it set up just fine, and I can reveal the secret ingredient: Rosewater!

Unfortunately I have this stupid head (and chest and throat) cold so I can’t really taste anything but that it’s sweet.

I stared at Max tasting it last night like Captain Barbossa watching Miss Swann eat an apple.

And our first tomato is turning red! They grow up so soon! And since I discovered that one should actually FERTILIZE tomatoes every now and again we have two more growing and several blooms which may become MORE little red fruit. Hooray!

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