I started off a sunny but windy and cold day with The Adventures of Robin Hood, then Brunch With the Beatles. George Harrison was in the spotlight today; he passed on around this time in 2001. Among his songs played on the show were "Don't Bother Me" (his first song written on his own), "Taxman," and the instrumental "Cry For a Shadow" with John.
I called Mom as I made Ginger-Spiced French Toast for breakfast. Mom sounded tired, but in a somewhat better mood than she was last week. She finally heard from Keefe, who received two $50 gift cards to restaurants from her for his 21st birthday so he could treat himself to a nice meal and drink. She was going to spend the afternoon at the grocery store, rounding up what she needed for Thanksgiving Day. Dad, Anny, and Skylar went to visit Dad's mom Ann in northern New Jersey. Grandma Ann lives in a nice house in a beautiful wooded area, but she's getting on in years, and Dad and his younger sister Mary who lives in Manhattan both keep an eye on her.
I walked to work shortly after. Jodie was picking me up afterwards to take us to an early Thanksgiving dinner at Mark and Vanessa's house. The wind was at my back for most of the way, and it was really a rather nice, brisk walk that I quite enjoyed. The scenery here was very pretty, with the blue sky and cyclone of orange leaves blowing every which way.
Work was on-and-off busy all day, mostly not as bad as I figured it would be. I assumed the lines would be across the store, especially given that the Eagles are off this week. The chilly wind may have kept quite a few people at home, or they may be waiting for tomorrow before the rain and wind is supposed to arrive. There was still plenty of food in the back room leftover from yesterday, too. We had plenty of help, and my relief was right on time. I was able to hurry in the bathroom, change into a regular shirt and sweater, and hurry outside.
Jodie was there when I got out. We went right to Westmont, where my cousins Mark and Vanessa live. This time, we were joined by Vanessa's college-age daughter Brittany and her boyfriend Patrick, a good-looking young man with a trim beard and a gentle manner. Dinner was delicious! Vanessa made a turkey breast that was as moist as any dark meat, macaroni and cheese with tomato slices on top (I ate the tomato slices), mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, green beans, and a very spicy sausage stuffing. There were store-bought pumpkin and apple pies for dessert. I had a little of everything but the apple pie (the pumpkin was enough) and the mashed potatoes (I'm not a fan of white potatoes). I also had creamy mint sugar sticks that Vanessa and Mark brought home from the Atlantic City boardwalk last summer. I love those. I don't see them that often around here.
We laughed and chatted, talking about jobs and shirts and family dinners of the past (Vanessa comes from a family with 14 kids!). Mark and Vanessa are going to Wisconsin to join most of Vanessa's family for dinner, which is why they're having one for themselves now. Brittany is staying behind to work at her job at the Starbucks in Cherry Hill; she'll apparently have dinner with Patrick's family in Pennsylvania.
Mark had football on all night while we ate. The Cowboys were mauling the Giants when Jodie and I arrived. By the time we were having dessert, the Giants had tied the game, 21-21. The Cowboys managed to pull off a last-minute field goal that just won them the game, 24-21. Mark was already annoyed over the Packers' earlier tie with their rivals the Minnesota Vikings, 26-26.
When I got home, it seemed awfully cold in my apartment. I thought it was because the door to the back room had open (the draft in the back room blows it open when the wind's really bad), but the thermometer in the room said 54! The heater, which has been making noise for days, must have finally died. Actually, it's acted up for at least two or three years now. I'd tell Miss Ellie, and then Andrew, and they'd send someone to fix it...and then it would make noise again after a few weeks. I did manage to take a hot shower, so at least the hot water heater works. I'm freezing now, even in my robe, the shawl Mom gave me for Christmas a few years ago, slippers, a heavy pajama shirt, and thick knit pants! I'll have to call Andrew first thing tomorrow and see what he can do.