Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Hey everyone

Darn, I really didn't mean to stay away for this long. Well, after dozens of calls to my phone and DSL providers, and three technician visits, I am now back online. I'm leaving out of that short summary a month's worth of frustrations. For example, on the second tech support visit, I tell him I have no dial tone. He laughs as if to say, lady, you saw how much work I just did, how I figured out the problem is with your modem, and now you want me to do even more work? Hmm, I think, being the nice person I am, maybe he's right, the problem's with my DSL modem, not my phone line. (Even though, from the very beginning, I felt the problem was with the wiring. A wire was going to the wrong place, which of course would mean it was my phone company's fault.) Do you have a phone I can check for dial tone? he asks. No, I say, sheepishly. I only use my cell phone. He shakes his head, laughing some more, as if to say, She has no phone! She's worried about her dial tone - and she has no phone! Before I can get offended he says he'll look into it and get back to me, meaning (I realize later) he'll do nothing whatsoever about it and leave me wondering if I'm going crazy. Later, I would also realize, hang on! If the problem's with my modem, and not my Mac or land line, then logging onto the internet on my laptop through dial up should be no problem. But after some experimenting, I confirmed that there was indeed no dial tone, just like I'd told no. two dufus AT&T tech guy. A fact confirmed by no. three tech guy. The wire was in fact wired to the wrong place! (Ha! In your face no. two!!!) How and why wired to the wrong place, can only guess. Quelle nightmare, quelle month, but is over.

I don't mean that having no internet for a month made life into an ordeal. But it did help feed my tendency to wrestle with my dark side. Sometimes I'd be working on something and I'd think, oh, why bother when I can't even post the darned thing? Or, because I was a little bored and couldn't turn to my usual amusements or distractions, I'd ruminate about how those closest to me have annoyed or offended me. (Oh, I so don't enjoy doing that! So why do I still do it?) And so September, a happy month which ended with my winning lots of money in Vegas (from football bets), turned into glum October during which I got a traffic ticket, had cross words with a close friend, and suffered heart palpitations forcing me to give up caffeine perhaps forever, though I hope not. I know, I could have spent some of my time at some wifi spot with my laptop, but I'd determined when I got it that I'd never weigh it down with internet since it's my artwork and writing computer.

Anyway, anyway...huhh...back to normal. And good things from past month: I have begun running and strength training every day again as better means of dealing with stress and strengthening heart so it never palpitates again, I now speak more to strangers (not that I never did before but now am so very glad for any chance to converse), um...got a few things off chest with close friend I had words with, I still have all my Vegas winnings which will use for birthday trip to...Paris? The south of France? Lisbon, Prague or Naples? I want to go somewhere, anywhere, where I can spend at least two weeks outside of my usual environment as means of dealing with and looking forward to the yearly trauma most western women must endure, that reminderer that one, at least in this culture...well, you know how it goes...ugh...

One thing I wanted to post about earlier this month was my trip to Vegas for a Journey concert with my mother. She's crazy about Journey which makes me very happy because she needs more fun in her life. Here she is having lots of fun...
Here's a copy of the Trevi fountain...
Inside the Venetian...I know, every tourist gets this shot. But wow!...One of the pools at The Bellaggio. I want one of these in my backyard one day...We didn't eat here. I just thought it was funny. Trop chic, ce restaurant! The Eiffel and the Palais Garnier together at last...Inside the Parisian...Gambling, (indoor)outdoor cafes, ten dollar crepes, I love Vegas! However campy and unnatural it is, everyone must see it at least once.

One last story: even though I felt pretty lucky in Vegas, on the slots I kept winning small amounts or breaking even. There was one machine in particular which, as my mother puts it, kept calling to me, even though playing it meant betting more than my usual. Well, on my fifth go, wouldn't you know it, jackpot! ($110) except...because I'd grown so used to betting the median to least amount, to playing it safe in other words, I didn't qualify to actually win the jackpot. I was so upset (I had a feeling about that machine!! So why did I still hold back?) I didn't want to play anymore after that.

So my mother told me about a man she used to work with who went to Vegas and played a machine with a jackpot of over a hundred grand. Of course he won the jackpot. But since he only bet the least amount his winnings only came to about a thousand dollars. "Oh! he was cryyiiing!" she said, laughing, "But no one felt bad for him! The cheapskate. That's what you get for betting the least amount. If you're not willing to risk everything every time, then don't even play."

Good advice, mom.

The artwork at the top of the post, by the way, is one of my latest. More later, or you can check out my recently updated illustration portfolio.


  1. Welcome back! I definitely recommend Paris or the South of France!

  2. Welcome back, Cheryl! I've missed you! So glad that your internet connection is fixed and that you've used the offline time to create, balance health and well-being, and enjoy life. Oh, and congratulations on your win! How exciting! I can't wait to hear where your travel plans take you. I like your new artwork and thanks for sharing your photos. It's so good to have you back! Much love and joy, dear one. xx
    PS ... Thank you so much for leaving such wise and meaningful thoughts on my blog. You truly are a star!

  3. Welcome back! Sounds like you went through withdrawal from an addiction to the Internet. I would have! Glad some positive things also took place.
    Heart palpitations from anxiety? Hope that clears up.
    I really love that first piece of work – takes me back to my childhood.

  4. Well, there you are! I've missed you. First things first though, how much did you win girl that you can now afford to go to Paris? the south of France? for two weeks???? Good for you. The boyfriend and I were in Vegas the end of September and we contributed to their economy by not winning!

    Love your dealings with the phone guys. Glad to know they are the same down there as they are up here!

  5. Hi Maya, thanks! Hmmm, maybe both! For the time I want to go (late Dec.-Jan) the south might be a little more pleasant weather wise. But I can't not go to Paris. Oh well, think budget will determine where I go.

    Hi Carol Anne, thanks and your welcome! That's what artist friends are for! And I've missed you too. Yeah, something fun to focus on - travel plans!!! rather than when will I get internet again. I did get a lot of work and exercise done, at least. And I am back! Yeah, I am back!!!!

  6. SOunds like it was a tough month but a fun month, I highly recommend Paris, trip of a lifetime! Happy Halloween!

  7. Hi Beth, yes, serious withdrawl! Not fun. I did have access to the internet at the library so I could still do my emails but of course I couldn't upload anything from there. Yeah, the palpitations. It's not so bad now, a scary thump here and there. I'm going to the doctors on Monday to get an EKG just in case. Cross your fingers for me!!!

    Hi Lianne, I've missed you too! Oh, I won about $1,500. So that plus some savings and some money from a painting sale and I have enough for some backpack budget travel. Or a nice splurge of a trip depending on how long I want to be gone for. You went to Vegas too??? Isn't it great? I love Vegas. Course winning some money there might have colored my opinion somewhat.

    Hee, hee, phone guys...

  8. Welcome back! I really hope you don't have to cold turkey caffiene... I've never been to Vegas tho' it looks like a blast! Glad you and your Ma had a fabulous time!!

  9. ...fingers are crossed... :)

  10. Well--there you are. Wondered if you were okay. Missed seeing all your fabulous work. I'm glad you had fun with your mom and how wonderful that she had such a terrific time. I am a Mac person too. Went over and checked out your 15 minute sketches. Jeesh, 15 minutes??? I gushed over the Tofino piece, my sister lives on the island and I love Tofino! The nekkid ladies were pretty too. Glad your back, and thanks for visiting my blog!

  11. Hey there :)
    Vegas looks awesome, and great photographs!

  12. Welcome back! I've missed you...great pictures from Las Vegas, have always wanted to go. Helena xx

  13. I'm with everyone else . . . welcome back! I've missed your rambles and rants and lovely artwork. And if you go to Paris, please, please go to the Museum of the Middle Ages at Cluny to see the Lady and the Unicorn tapestries, please! Journey on . . . online!

  14. Hi Cheryl - I love the top panel of your illustration. The one with the girl in bed.

    It has a bit of a Chris Van Allsburg feel to it. The way you've simplified/stylized the shapes and the dreamy quality of it.

  15. welcome back - you are a very amusing writer even in the depths of internet destruct time! Well done on your winnings! You can always visit the UK too!

  16. Lovely photos from lovely places :-)

  17. Hi Shanster, thanks, I tried some caffeine yesterday (strong tea) and don't think it agreed with me. Oh well, longs I never have to give up chocolate. Vegas is a world away from Colorado, but I hope you see it one day, if you like that kind of thing that is.

    Thanks Beth!

    Hi Elizabeth, thanks, my mother's been wanting to see them for ages. She had tickets last year but then gave them - just gave them - to someone from England who'd come all the way over here to see them.

    Yeah, as an animation student I had to learn to draw the figure in a minute or less, 30 seconds even, though of course these weren't finished drawings.

    Thanks Random Roar!

    Thanks Helena, I missed you and your stories too! xx

    Hi Beth, I'm planning on a month now (I hope) so I should be able to fit the Middle Ages Museum in, I think, in between walking around so I can eat in as many places as possible :)

    HI Chris, thanks, yeah I do tend so simplify things. Guess that's my style. I love Chris van Allsburg, he's one of my favorite illustrators so thanks for comparing my work to his!!!

    Hi Phil, thanks and thank you! Yes, I have a friend who'll be in London next spring and she invited me to visit her there. Maybe I'll spend most of 2010 traveling. Don't know how expense wise, but I always seem to find a way. If I do, I just might make my way up to Manchester...

  18. Thanks Britt-Arnhild! :)

  19. I'm so behind on my blog reading :( I nearly missed this post. Thank you for posting those pictures!!! Wow, Vegas sure looks like a lot of fun. I'm glad you are back.

    P.S. Your artwork is so dreamy and great.

  20. Hi Dutch Donut Girl, me too, esp. now that I've committed to getting more writing done each day. Yeah, Vegas was lots of fun - too bad I was with my mother ;)


  21. I was convinced that I commented here alreadya couple of days ago, but...

    Anyhow, I of course said how happy I was to see you back and that I strongly recommended a visit to Paris; I know a guide who would like to accompany you! :-)

  22. Hi Peter, I've got my heart set on Paris, so I've been looking for an apartment there. I'm hoping for one in particular but I have to wait and see if the owner accepts my offer. Wherever we end up staying L. and I want to be there on New Years Eve! It would be dream come true. When I'm there I hope you will show me (or us) some of the wonderful places you've found!!!

  23. Hey Cheryl ...

    Thanks so much for your comment, it was very much appreciated!!

    jonas xo


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