This darned app…

As soon as it was released, I downloaded the app from my favorite thought-leader. It sends a daily message meant to open your eyes and your mind. I read this one, and thought, “Yup, gotta take care of yourself first in order to take care of others.”

imageThen, when it showed up a couple of days later, I thought, “I guess I needed the reminder.”

When it appeared yet again, my thoughts ran straight to, “This darned app is broken. I wonder if I should delete it and download it again?”  Then, I froze. . .what if I just hadn’t “gotten” the message yet?

I remembered my trip to Long Island: I was worried about getting from LaGuardia airport onto the right bus, to get to the right train station, to get the right train out to the island to meet my sisters. As much as I told myself I could do it, by the time the plane landed, my stomach was in knots.

I found a Metropolitan Transit Authority info booth, told the young man where I wanted to go and he pulled out a map, drew circles and arrows all over it, and left me standing at a bus stop with a ticket in my hand. That was sooo easy, I thought. When my bus came, I clambered aboard, and as he’s yelling instructions to the passengers, I asked the driver if this bus would take me to Woodside, then on to Jamaica, so I could catch a train out to the east end of the island.

“No doll, that’s not how you get there.” The door closed behind me. My stomach sank. The bus was packed like a sardine can, I was wedged in , and we had just pulled away from the curb.
“But, that’s what the MTA guy told me.”
“Those guys don’t know nuthin. Don’t listen to them. Where ya goin on the island?”
“Ronkonkoma,” I answered.
“Here, doll, lemme tell ya whatcha gotta do.” And he started ‘splainin it to me.

imageA voice behind me says, “Excuse me, ma’am, I’m going to Ronkonkoma. You can follow me.”
I turn to see who said that, and it’s a young Tom Cruise in an American Airways uniform. A pilot on his way home. He lead me all the way there, chatted amiably, and kept an eye on me while he stepped away to smoke a cigarette and make some calls. He’d wait for me to catch up as we made the transfers, and finally, we arrived at Ronkonkoma station.

I know I won’t ever see John again, but I will think about him each time I see Tom Cruise onscreen. I sent a little prayer into the universe, and he showed up.

My needs were met, once again.

XO  Donna



I don’t say “Lawn Guyland”

It’s where I grew up, but I got to Texas as quickly as I could, and I say it just like y’all.

I’m going there early Saturday morning!  If you look on the (very judgemental) map below, I grew up on the south shore, in “Too far from the City, Too far from the Hamptons” Bayport.

imageI’m meeting my sisters at the train station, if I don’t get lost between LaGuardia  Airport (The City) and Ronkonkoma (Extrememly White People).
I’m a tad worried…it’s been more than 30 years since I’ve taken the train, but I keep reminding myself, “You used to take the train into the city to go to concerts all the time. Stoned. You got this!”

On Monday, we are taking the ferry south, across the bay, to The Pines, on Fire Island (Gays) for the week and staying in a little beach cottage for some R & R (relaxation and recreational bartending). Three of the four of us have tended bar professionally at some point in our lives, and we love to mix cocktails for each other.

The real reason for the getaway is that we are finally going to scatter our sister’s ashes. Hopefully we won’t get arrested, drop the urn into the ocean, or injure someone. And since our 88 year-old father, Daddy-O, will probably be there, we need to walk the tight-rope between the solemnity the occasion deserves, and our familial hiding-behind-humor coping mechanism.

Picture any movie with all four Marx brothers  in it, (yes, there are four – everybody forgets poor Zeppo) and that’s us. Should be a lot of fun.

My sisters have already mapped out the best German bakery for pastries and coffee cake, and where to get the best Eggplant Parmigiana. I will take notes, take pictures, and have stories to tell when I get back.

Now to pack. I wonder if the cottage will have a cocktail shaker?

XO Donna