My week started off on a great note -- a walk downtown to the second day of the First Annual Central American Independence Festival (celebrating the independence of Central America from Mexico) in Plainfield (NJ). The day was gorgeous, the food was tasty, and the atmosphere of the crowd made me smile.
Then, with a return to work after my staycation, things went downhill. Monday morning I had that tickle in the back of my throat warning me a cold was coming. My allergies decided to kick in full force along with the Killer Cold. A lot of things had to get done at work -- things left for me while I was on vacation, a new trainee to train, and bizarre happenings. I went in before the dawn most mornings this week returning home twelve hours later. Blech. I ended up awake during the nights because of congestion. Woe is me!
That's why I was a bit quiet this week. I was a coughing, sniffling zombie. Last night and today I'm super-medicating -- Dayquil, Nightquil,cough drops, tissues, and an extended nap! After all, I have to be on my toes (or at least alert) for the two-hour season premiere of The Amazing Race!
On the home front, Vincent is doing well. He's playing a bit more and really enjoys sitting in the window. Wait until the leaves are off the tree and he can see the squirrels chase each other on the branches. He's going to love that. He's definitely a love-bug kind of cat. If he had his way, he'd be somehow attached to me at all times. I told him they haven't declared a "take your cat to work" day yet.
Due to an over abundance of work and an under abundance of good health this week, I really didn't do much other than work and sleep (with the exception of the festival last Sunday). However, something happened on the train that I know you guys will appreciate --
Thursday as I headed home from work I noticed there were many more women than usual getting on the train. My ride home goes to Newark, New York City. Usually I can tell what the crowds are heading towards the city in the evening -- Devils game people with their make-up, Giants, Jets, Yankees, Mets, Rangers ... you name it fans ... with their jerseys on, rock concert attendees. It's usually easy to figure out the crowds.
But every stop, more women. The ages ranged from late twenties to sixties. Women all over the train. A plethora of women. And, they were all going to Newark. Huh? What's up with that? Thankfully, it wasn't just me noticing the influx. The conductor finally asked the women seated across the aisle from me, "What's going on in Newark tonight?"
It was the So You Think You Can Dance tour. The male conductor was clueless. But I joined in on talk about the show with some of the influx. I could actually imagine some of them might be readers of the blog. But I didn't mention it. We talked about Evan and his brother, as well as this week's audition show.
Onto this week's photographs I've taken ... clicking on an image will open it larger in its own window.
Sunday in Plainfield, New Jersey. This was a lot of fun and I believe it had to be a huge success as far as events in the city. Great food, a live band, a mechanical bull, bouncy castles for the kids, beer for the adults, and goods of all kinds. This city has an ever-growing population of Hispanics from more countries than I can name. While at times I find the language a barrier to getting to know some of the folks, most I speak to or greet on the sidewalks are friendly and pleasant people.
I swear I see more cowboy boots in town than I did when I lived in Southern California. Cowboy boots, cowboy hats, and those humongous shiny belt buckles. Plainfield, NJ. Who woulda thunk it? These boots were on sale at the festival. I made the background black and white to bring out the color in the boots.
What a great day for the kids! I was surprised that more folks outside of the Latino culture didn't attend in droves. Black and Latino folks make up most of the population here. As a white middle-aged woman, I'm probably low on the demographics chart. Hey, I went and had a good time. You didn't have to be a Latino to enjoy the food and the day.
This mechanical bull was much more safe than ones I've seen in bars. It was mounted on and surrounded by a huge bouncy castle. I'm sure they adjusted its speed and bucking to mild for the kids. They all had a good time on it.
It doesn't matter that the bull threw him on his head.
This was early in the day before the crowds arrived. This company doesn't exist anymore, nor has it been around since I've been in the area. But, apparently once it was "as seen on TV."
Mmm ... roasted corn. I bought some of that and pollo on a stick. Er, chicken on a stick.
Thankfully my cold hadn't kicked in and I could still taste food on Sunday. The rest of the week it was all cardboard to me.
Why don't we date our buildings these days? Are we thinking planned obsolescence? Do we think they won't last into the next century? This is a building on East Front Street in Plainfield.
Where have all the gargoyles gone? I like ornate doohickeys on buildings. When did they stop doing that? I want them back! Another East Front Street building in Plainfield.
They painted the curbs yellow, but this intersection at Roosevelt and East Front in Plainfield has absolutely NO markings for the crosswalk. Thankfully there is a traffic light there. I cannot fathom why painting the curbs was important but the crosswalks are ignored.
Nature's beauty in a weed. Achoo.
I've seen more honeybees this week than I have all summer. I had to look up the plant. Spotted knapweed, it's all over the place and it's an "invasive" plant which is taking over the terrain. For me, this was my shot of the week. That bee is probably less than a half-inch long and he came out looking fine and detailed. That is, if I do say so myself.
I can never sleep in public places. I just can't. But so many do it on the train. It's their own fault they end up in blogs like this. NJ Transit train, Raritan Valley Line.
This is the Plainfield Train Station just as the sun was rising.
A flower struggles to escape its fence on East Second Street in Plainfield.
As I approached the train station one morning.
As a pedestrian, I'm really getting irked at all the adult men riding bicycles on the sidewalks in Plainfield. Not women, not even children (the kids on sidewalks are more understandable) ... I'm talking the men who use bikes as their means of transport. They are supposed to follow the same rules of the road (and be ON the road) as cars. They don't belong on the sidewalk. Well, unless they're parked, of course.
A white with a touch of grey cat in black and white. Yeah, we had a photo session.
Well, I did.
I can't imagine what this cat has gone through which left him a stray on the streets of New York City. His nightmares are behind him and he seems to be very contented and comfortable here.