Thursday, August 25, 2011

"You got be with your friends, even when life sucks"

"You got be with your friends, even when life sucks"  a quote from Nancy Bushspice.   She told me that tonight at a joint birthday party for me and another friend, Barbara, who was celebrating her 70th Birthday.

I didn't want to go tonight, I knew something was probably up, they told me it was just a party for Barb.   I was trying to stay away.  I left work for a hair cut, which thanks to Sheila at Expressions, turned into a cut, color and had my eyebrows done.  The brighter hair lifted my spirits a bit, but I still didn't want to go tonight.  I figured I go home, have Parke take me out to dinner and then come home and sulk. 

I got lots of reasons to sulk,. I am on a partial layoff from work, ends are harder to meet, savings is starting to deplete, can't find a new job because I don't have a college education and I am not bilingual.  I got family issues, health issues, money issues and just some plain old issues.  Why celebrate?

On the other hand, God loves me,  I have a job, ends do seem to eventually meet, I still have savings, a man who loves me,  a mother who bought me cupcakes, grandchildren with a birthday message, and I have good friends.  Lots of really good friends.  Who love me even when I sulk.  Yeah, I guess I have some good reasons to celebrate.

So besides being my birthday, which by the way happens every year around this time, it's.....another day in Catasauqua.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I feel the Earth move under my feet....

I feel the sky tumbling down. I feel my heart start to trembling, whenever you're around. 

If only it was the glimpse my true love that was causing the earth to move, but it was an earthquake; and where was I?  -- at the eye doctor.  I had just walked up to the receptionist window at the eye doctor's office when the glass started to shake, at first I thought I bumped it with my elbow, but it continued to shake and the counter was moving.  I was looking at the files and they started to move and I was getting vertigo.  Soon everyone in the doctor's office was jumping up and saying what was that, what's happening.  The nurse walked up to the window and she thought perhaps an explosion somewhere.  I didn't know, it was kind of surreal.  I called my office.  Annette at my office had not felt it -  she was walking down the hall, the boss called her and said his desk was moving, she thought he was having a heart attack or stroke and she wasn't sure what to do.  Then she answered the phone, I ask her, did the building shake? She said she didn't feel it but the boss had, and then our Bethlehem Office called and the girl there had felt it to.  I called home, Parke thought the cat bumped his chair and my mother thought she had ghosts under the bed.   Parke called me back and confirmed it was an earthquake. 

I always thought I was emergency ready, but I certainly was not this time.  I stood still, watching the huge glass window shake, did not head for a doorway, did not duck for cover. 

The best story was from my bff, Cathy, who thought a giant squirrel was shaking her air conditioner, or that there was a ghost in her hutch (what is with blaming the poor ghosts) or someone was climbing up the side of her house, King Kong perhaps? 

With 9/11 so close I can understand why Washington, D.C. evacuated so many places.  I learned from CNN a lot of things yesterday.  That the east coast sits on one large plate, unlike California where the plate is cracked in many places.  That is why the earthquake was felt over such a large area.  And that houses and buildings on the east coast are not built to withstand earthquakes.  

I think it's funny that I never wanted to move to California because of the earthquakes and we get one in Catasauqua, who knew it would ever happen here.  Someone said to me it's the end of times, I say it's just...another day in Catasauqua.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Was that a Conga Line in North Catasauqua?

Yes, indeed there was a conga line in North Catasauqua Friday Night at the North Catasauqua Playground.  The North Catty Rec Committee presented "Paradise in the Park" complete with The Steel Drum Band.  The music was Hot, Hot, Hot, but the night was cool after a thunderstorm drenched the area just an hour before.

I had heard this band perform before at Coca Cola Park prior to an Iron Pigs game, but the sound system there didn't do it justice.  They sounded great tonight and I had a great time.  I got their after 7:00 pm, I wasn't going to go but I was antsy around the house.  When I got there I was delightfully surprised at the  crowd it was larger than I expected and the Tiki torches lit around the area.  I sat by a friend of mine and her husband for a little bit.  Soon after I got there I was served some Caribbean Jerk Chicken, WOW is was spicy but delicious.  I called my friend Shirley who lives nearby and she came up and joined me.  What a great night.  They played for an hour and one-half with a wide range of music.  Not just island music, but some gospel and popular songs thrown in. And yes!  it was inevitable that a conga line formed during Hot, Hot, Hot!     What a great time, friends, food, and music-- it certainly was Paradise in the Park and that's...another day in Catasauqua.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

From a Fallen Police officer to the Hershey Conference

 I was reading the paper this morning about the fallen police officer, Robert Lasso, the Freemansburg Police Officer, who was murdered while doing his duty.  The article was touching and brought a few tears to my eyes. But an article right below, in a section called "In the Burbs"  said it best -"The respect police officers receive in death is out of all proportion to the respect they receive in life."  

Yesterday I read this Facebook post from Catty's own Police Chief, Doug Kish, where he wrote, "Attended the funeral service of fallen brother Officer Robert Lasso today.  It was great to see the community support for this father, husband and friend.  May he forever rest in peace at the right hand of the Father.  Just can't shake this "pit of my stomach" feeling."    Yesterday I realized, that yes, this could even happen in Catty and that we probably do not respect police officers enough. 

So maybe the next time you see Catty's finest maybe we need to smile or tell them what a good job they are doing. 

In the beginning of August I attended a Joyce Meyer Conference in Hershey, and one of the things she said was to thank people for a job well done.  Tell them you appreciate them.  Do we do that enough to anyone?  Or have we become a society that expects everything from everyone without a please and a thank you.  I personally am bad at saying please to Parke when I ask for him to hand me something and he reminds me of that fact, but I am better at thank yous.

I love Joyce Meyer, she is an inspiration to me and reminder to me on how a good Christian should act.  My favorite thing is her one liners.  Not jokes, but inspirations.  Here are a few from the Hershey Conference this year.

"Miracles come in cans........not in can'ts.

"Teamwork makes the dreamwork"

"When fear knocks at your door, have faith and answer it and no one will be there."

"We don't need wishbones, we need backbones"

"With God you never fail, you just keep taking the test over...and over.. and over"  and last but not least..

'Focus on giving smiles away and you will always discover that your own smiles will always be in great supply!"

So smile today, at a policeman, or someone just doing their job, a stranger or a friend and discover....another day in Catasauqua

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Albino Lady

Not to long ago my sister-in-law, Bonnie and her daughter, my niece Sherry had stopped by.  They told me that they read my blog and mentioned that I should do an article on the Albino Lady.  Now I had long forgotten the legend of the Albino Lady, which I probably heard from Bonnie in the first place. I was reminded of this conversation from a Facebook page on You Know your from Catasauqua or North Catasauqua if you remember.  I was told if you walked through the old train tunnel  she would chase you.   Later it was mentioned that she was on Canal Road, which I confirmed with my friend Cathy. 

After I got done talking with Cathy, Parke says to me, we had a similiar urban legend which kind of combines with another urban legend "The Hook" , except the foul play was done by an Albino family that lived in Richland.   So where are all these albinos in the legends and where do these legends come from?

In the early 1800s, the White Lady and her daughter were supposed to have lived on the land where the Durand Eastman Park -- part of Irondequoit and Rochester  -- now stands. One day, the daughter disappeared. Convinced that the girl had been raped and murdered by a local farmer, the mother searched the marshy lands day after day, trying to discover where her child's body was buried. She took with her two German shepherd dogs to aid in her search, but she never found a trace of her daughter. Finally, in her grief, the mother threw herself off a cliff into lake Ontario and died.   After death, the mother's spirit returned to continue the search for her child. People say that on foggy nights, the White Lady rises from the small Durand Lake which faces Lake Ontario.

Another story from Topeka, Kansas has her as being a real lady who being an Albino came out at night and walked the country roads near her house.  Once spotted by some teenagers looking for a secluded spot, she became the goal of  nights out.  After been sought after by many a drunk teenager she was taken away by her family, but legend grew and still it is said that her ghost roams the northern parts of Topeka.

Further legend from the Rochester Cemetary  in Topeka -  The legend goes that there was this lady who lived nearby this cemetary. She was shunned from society (mainly by kids who loved to poke-fun at her.) She never came out during the day because the sun touching her sensitive skin could cause serious pain; so she mainly walked and roamed during the night. It was like this until she died.

Sometime in between 1980-1990 this took place. A teenage couple decides to park in the cemetery .  They went on until they heard a laugh, cackle..etc. The girl looks up and sees this white Albino lady peering in through the window of the car. The boy tries to start the car...but fails to do so. I doubt the following is true....but supposedly the Lady took this to her advantage, ripping the roof of the car off....followed by the head of the girl...which she them proceeds to give this new treasure to her ghostly pooch. (reports have gone from a collie to a a pitbull.) The car starts...and the boy drives off with the headless body of his once significant other.

Closer to home is Ghost Mountain (Buckwampum, Bucks County) According to the Lenni-Lenape legends, Buckwampum Hill  (known by locals as Ghost Mountain) was the site of the final showdown between the Indians and the mammoths of old. More recent urban legends have placed albino cannibals on Ghost Mountain.  One is even supposed to live in a glass house on the hill, and will give chase if you get too close to his house.

So I have an albino woman, albino family and now albino cannibals.  Why? Well with all things misunderstood comes stories.

Albinism is a cogenital disorder characterized by the complete or partial absence of pigment in the skin, hair and eyes due to absence or defect of an enzyme involved in the production of melanin.  Lack of skin pigmentation makes the person more susceptible to sunburn and skin cancers, thus the roaming at night.

If the Albino Lady of Catasauqua ever existed, I do not know, but it makes for a good story.  And if ever on a dark stormy night, on your way back from an Iron Pigs game,  your car breaks down on Canal Road;  should hear a tap tap tapping or perhaps a scratching don't look's another day in Catasauqua.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Horseshoe

When I was growing up in Catasauqua, there was a familiar ping of metal you could hear down on Front Street.  My Grandmother always referred to that area as the "the Horseshoe".  If wasn't until recently that I understood why.  

The Bryden Horse Shoe Company was opened in 1882 by Oliver Williams. Mr. Williams had moved to Catasauqua at the urging of his long time friend David Thomas and became the President of the Catasauqua Manufacturing Company.  Mr. Williams wanted to find ways to use the iron products so he bought the rights for the Bryden process, which made horseshoes entirely by heavy hammer.  The first Bryden Plant  was located at Strawberry and Railroad Streets.   Williams equipped the plant with two forge hammers and employed approximately thirty men. They produced a daily sum of 2-1/2 to 3 tons of horseshoes.  By 1888 expansion was necessary and land was purchased on the west side of Front Street.  The Bryden Horse Shoe plant was one of the largest horseshoe plant in the world producing 40 to 50 tons of horseshoes daily!   The Bryden Neverslip was one of the most used types of winter shoes for horses that pulled city streetcars.

Subsequently the Bryden Company faced the inevitable decline in the horseshoe market as cars replaced horse-drawn vehicles. The Bryden, fortunately, attracted the attention of a progressive competitor, the Phoenix Horse Shoe Company, Poughkeepsie, New York

In 1928 the newly organized Phoenix Manufacturing Company acquired the Bryden Neverslip Company, named to reflect the manufacture of winter horse shoes. Phoenix later acquired other horseshoe facilities, but, except for the Catasauqua plant, liquidated or moved the operations. The new owners found the Catasauqua plant suitable for modernization and in 1939 discontinued the rolling mill and converted to the production of commercial forgings and flanges, thus becoming Phoenix's forging division. Demand for the products remained strong. By 1953 the Catasauqua plant housed 21 board hammers, ranging in size from 1200 pounds to 4000 pounds, plus a complete die room and production machine shop. The Phoenix Forge Company still operates at 800 Front Street, from what I can tell from their website.  

It was those board hammers that I heard as a kid, the bing, the bang and the occasional boom.  Boy that area was noisy I use to wonder how people could live down by the Phoenix, but like all noises, I guess, you get use to them.   And that's .......another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

A day at Musikfest

Well, it is that time of year again....Musikfest in Bethlehem.  Parke and I haven't gone for the last few years, but since I have all this "vacation" time on my hands we figured today would be a nice day to go.  The weather could not have been better.  We parked on Broad Street, by my Bethlehem office and walked downtown.  Since Main Street is not closed off during the day it was a little strange since if you wanted to eat at one of the stands you had to kinda stand in the street to order.  

We Volksplatz, Lyrikplatz, visited Handwerkplatz, went through Festplatz and ended up in Plaza Tropical.  I thought I was hearing some really good Bob Marley so we headed over to the tent and saw George Wesley (and his dreadlocks which almost hit the ground)  and his band playing a mix of raggae and rock and roll.  His Caribbean sound had me feeling like I was really on vacation.  We sat for about an hour and really enjoyed the show, man can he play the guitar.   I was contemplating how much white hair I was seeing, but some of those ladies & gentlemen were really enjoying the show, but I have come to the conclusion that once you have age spots you really shouldn't be raising your hands and doing any rock and roll hands.   Of course you had your usual drunks that danced through the whole thing.   But hey, it wouldn't be Musikfest with out them. (I personally was eyeing the frozen Margaritas and since there was a rock wall to my left and reggae music in the front I could of pretend I was on a cruise)

As for some other attractions, I am now the proud owner of 6 tubes of Sensodyne toothpaste, after going through the Sensodyne trailer.  They have dental hygienists inside who sit and give you good tooth advice and a back pack with more toothpaste.   I also won a Geico can koozie, which makes up for all those Iron Pig koozies that are never tossed to me at the Iron Pigs games.  Plus I had my picture take with the the Geico gecko, which I was hoping to post on this blog, but it says that it takes 24 to 72 hours until it's online. 

We did not eat anything, my stomach was having volcanic eruptions yesterday and this morning so I didn't want to try any fried pickles or fried koolaid.  Actually I feel that it is quite expensive to eat, but had I been feeling better I might have had something.  There were many appetizing stands. 

We did not go over to Steel Stacks, perhaps another time.   But it was a great day at Musikfest.  We there a little over 2 hours, got lots of exercise and had a lot of fun. 

Now I am back home, my feet hurt a little but that's.....another day in Catasauqua

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Rested, restored and restarted

So I am back from a real vacation, but I am still catching up at home.  I need to finish folding the wash and I skipped cutting the grass this week since it was a rainy weekend.  Speaking of that we drove to Hershey in a light rain, it was nice Thursday and Friday while we were there and then ended up driving home in pouring rain.  Oh well, at least it was nice while we were there.

I really enjoy going to see Joyce Meyer in Hershey, this was our 4th year and she is coming back next year in the beginning of August.  So I am sure we will be going back.  My next blog will be some Joyce one liners of inspiration that I would like to share with you.  Besides seeing Joyce, we hit the Hershey Outlet, Chocolate World and each year we eat at the Hershey Pantry.  This year on Friday we ventured to Green Dragon in Ephrata, it is a huge 30 acre site, which is a Farmer's Market and Flea Market.  We unfortunately only saw a small part of it, one of the women with us fell ill to the heat, so we left soon after we had gotten their.  There are 7 large market buildings, but we could only find 1, I finally saw another as we were leaving.  It is a huge mish mash of all kinds of things and it was kind of hard to know which way to go.

Still I got to see a lot of Amish and Mennonites while we were their and on our travels around.  My favoite was the horse and buggy going to the gas station.  He was getting gas for a lawn mower, which means he was probably a Mennonite and not Amish.

Did you ever notice how much things change while you are away, even for a short time.  Mine were the weeds that grew while I was gone,  I swore that I pulled them before I left.  Oh well, what can I say that's....another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Wow - Vacation

So here I am at the comfort suites in Hershey - or actually right outside of Hershey.  Looking forward to seeing Joyce Meyer in a couple hours. 

So far we ate at the Hershey Pantry - delicious, shopped the Hershey Outlets and stopped at Chocolate World to buy some Candy (oh and I had a chocolate milk, yum),

So we had a little down time and I was looking for the gym but I found the business room instead so I thought I dash out this quick blog.  Too bad I can't download some of my pictures from today, oh well, later.

Well I better go before they come looking for me, blog at you later and that's....not quite......another day in Catasauqua.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A little of this and that.....

Hey everybody, sorry, I've been slogging (that's slacking off my blogging) and I really don't why.  Have had a few issues arise here and there, but the good news is I AM GOING ON VACATION for 3 days to Hershey, PA to see Joyce Meyer.   Leaving tomorrow morning.

Joyce Meyer is a Christian author and speaker.  Her TV  and radio programs air in 39 languages in 200 countries, and she has written over 90 books on Christianity.  I really like her and I have many of her teaching CD's, so I am looking forward to going.  We have gone the last few years and always have had a good time.  Besides attending Joyce's talks we usually shop, eat and visit HERSHEY'S CHOCOLATE WORLD, which is good for whatever  else might ail you!  Darn it to buttons if I don't need a little of the gospel and chocolate to make my life straight again.  It also helps to go with good friends.  I also look forward to seeing one of my Facebook/Inspirational Kitchen Sisters.

Well, I read in the Catty Press that Recycling will be starting in North Catasauqua August 6, citizens of North Catty will be getting something in the mail to explain the voluntary recycling center, meaning, you don't have to recycle, but Mother Nature would love it if you did.

In my series of what I am doing on my summer "vacation"  last Thursday was my assigned day off and we went to an Iron Pigs game at 11:05 AM.  Morning games are different, mainly because it is attending mostly by Day Camps.  It's weird to not see beer sold at the game.  I saw ages of all kinds going to camp, beside the young children I saw Sacred Heart Assisted Living there, and the colors, each camp has their t-shirts and the stadium was all a glow in yellows, reds, oranges, blues and greens.  It was a great day at the Iron Pigs, even if they lost. 

Well, that pretty much updates you on what's been happening and when I get back this weekend I will let you know how it all went.  Have a great day and that's....another day in Catasauqua