This Month with Andy, November 2011

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Thank you all for reading my journal.


30th Wedding Anniversary
Just Married Photo</a>
Andy Barb on the Grass</a>
I took Barbara's old wedding ring, which she hasn't worn for 5 years because it's now too small, to a jeweler.  The Jeweler expanded it one size. I told the jeweler not to phone me because Barb could be home and it might ruin the surprise. Of course, the idiot jeweler phoned me, but by good fortune, Barb was in the back yard. I gave Barb her ring on Thanksgiving because that holiday was when we were married. She was very happy and delighted and surprised. She missed being able to wear the ring. It fits perfectly.  

Barbara's Wedding Ring
Barbara Wedding Ring</a>
Thirty one years ago, I designed this ring so it has a diamond on the letter "A" representing my name and had a jeweler create it from scratch.  I then gave it Barbara.  

Gift from Barbara
Just Married Photo</a>
Barbara gave me a beautiful set of noise-canceling headphones.  She knows how extraneous noises bother me. I've never had a high-quality set of headphones. They even come with an adaptor so they can be used on airplanes.

Stock Market Roller Coaster
For these past two months, I'd been hoping the stock market would rally, but each time it starts to happen, problems in Europe erupt like a volcano, stifling any rally.  A rally would have made me very comfortable going away for a little trip with Barb.  Hopefully, the European Central Bank will come to its senses and guarantee they will purchase sovereign bonds. Then, we could have have a nice Santa Rally by Christmas.  This stuff is very real to me because it is my income. If we have a good December Santa Rally, I can take Barb away on a nice anniversary trip. I remain hopeful.  The alternative, really, is an economic collapse – a really bad one at that!  (Also, I've had some very good job interviews this month at different cancer research centers. The interest has been picking up.  The Right Wing Republican effort to wreck the economy so Obama can take the blame will fail.)

Echo Mountain in the Dark
Echo Mtn</a>
‎Robin Hartzell, Roberto Villela, and I hiked Echo Mountain long after sunset last night. I'm sure our pupils were dilated to their maximum as we only had our Jedi senses to guide us and make sure none of us dropped off any of the numerous precipices that would make us look like over-ripe squashed tomatoes. At the top, all we could see was the thick mist from the impending rain and a few city lights peeking through the mist. We were lightly sprinkled as the wind chilled our bones.

Junk Mail
When I sign up for different services, like Sears, for example, I sign up as Andy S. Serrano. If it's for Union oil, I sign up as Andy U. Serrano. This way, I am able to track who is selling my name. It's amazing how many companies go ahead and share it after swearing they don't.

Welcome Julie Back from Kilimanjaro Hike
Group Photo</a>
Nancy Daleo and her dog, Elf., Lisa Teasely, Julie Mallette, Marie Rowson, Kristine Lee, Yvonne Saalman, Louis Guin, Olga Zimnyakova, Mabintou Diouare, Chris, Helen Danielson, and me, Andy Serrano.
Andy Julie Robin</a>
Andy, Julie, and Robin
We warmed up on Grunt 1, climbed Goat, went down Bird Bath, up Paul's Peril, down Darwin's Dilemma, and finished on the Bee Rock Trail.  Julie told us she hiked with one other person at Kilimanjaro and had 11 young Kenyans who carried all the supplies up the mountain. They started at 80 degrees and at the top it was 20 degrees. The meat was left to dry on trees with flies. She didn't eat any of it. On the last day, the cab driver drove 3 miles on the wrong side of the highway. The police stopped them. When the cop got out, the cab driver fled with Julie.

Behind the Scene Look
Andys butt</a>
Photo of Andy from behind climbing up.

Burning Ice Queen
Burning Ice Queen</a>
It will take a miracle to save this statuette.
Biliana Popova</a>
Sculpture Mentor: Biliana Popova
In mid November, in Biliana Popova's workshop (she's my sculpting mentor), I carefully made this sculpture, but the humidity was so high, it never dried properly.  This is how The Burning Ice Queen looked on her first day of life.  After I took this photo, I repaired the cracks with vinegar and added hair.  If the sculpture survives through the kiln, I'll be very surprised. I may have to do this one over again.

I've been going to my new Pilates class at 24Hour Fitness, the new gym I joined, and I find I'm really enjoying it and getting results.  I had become very accustomed to the last instructor at the old gym. As usual, there are about 25 women in the class and at the most, one or two guys. Pilates really strengthens my core and flattens any muffin-tops hanging over the belt-line. About twenty years ago, I herniated two disks in my spine. The doctor recommended surgery, but I refused and began an abdominal muscle strengthening program of crunches, sit-ups, and much more.  Within a few months, the doctor was amazed to find I could touch the floor with my palms and my knees unbent.

A Late Afternoon Monday Hike
Wilson to Los Angeles</a>
Monday Afternoon View
I was pleasantly surprised at having such a good turnout for a late-afternoon, Monday, hike.  Mabintou, Marie, Kristine, Sue, Emmy and I had our faces kissed by the very cool air in Griffith Park.  Because there were mud puddles everywhere, we followed solid rock wherever we could, such as Bee Rock bypass, Goat, Mt. Hollywood, Telephone, Bell, Car Wash, and Cardiac.  The city lights twinkled like some kind of fairy land after the rain has cleaned off the smog.

Anniversary Day Dinner
Wilson to Los Angeles</a>
After our 30th anniversary dinner, we went to the top of Mt. Wilson and enjoyed this late evening view.  If we are fortunate and the market smiles on us, maybe we can take a trip during the Christmas holidays.  (Yes, I'd take my camera.)

New Jeans, New Belt, New Cat
Andy Jeans Melon</a>
I was keeping Barb company while she shopped. While waiting for her to try on some new clothes, I noticed the women's jeans looked like they might fit me. I tried them on and, I have to say, they fit me better than any men's jeans ever did. I even bought the matching belt. From now on, it's women's jeans for me.  I sometimes get teased for wearing girl-shorts, now, I'll be teased for wearing women's jeans. I don't care. I'm comfortable. I'm holding my third cat, Melon.

:iconivy-mauve: Zoe-sp featured me in her… journal because she likes my monthly stories.


Fright by ~Hypnoticell

Another world by hachiyuki Another world by *hachiyuki

In Memory by Forestina-Fotos In Memory by *UKTara

The Incredible Hulk by toniart57 The Incredible Hulk by ~toniart57

:thumb267764314: FeelFree by ~marjasart

Faye Mahans bad day Cencored by curlyhair Faye Mahans bad day Cencored by *curlyhair

WINTER SUNFIRE by 1arcticfox WINTER SUNFIRE by `1arcticfox

Mee-Yon-Ulzzang by Yu-uki Mee-Yon-Ulzzang by ~Yu-uki

:thumb269383926: EverythingWillFlow4 by ~marjasart

:thumb155235289:  Colored Skech by ~cmbridgers

:thumb270302205: Zivity :55: by *pinkeye

Colors of autumn79 by MASYON Colors of autumn79 by ~MASYON

cat by uturo128 cat by *uturo128

inferno by hachiyuki  inferno by *hachiyuki

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Forestina-Fotos's avatar
Thank you very much for the feature! :hug:
Blessings to you and your lovely wife! :)