Welcome to WeeklyWilson.com, where author/film critic Connie (Corcoran) Wilson avoids totally losing her marbles in semi-retirement by writing about film (see the Chicago Film Festival reviews and SXSW), politics and books----her own books and those of other people. You'll also find her diverging frequently to share humorous (or not-so-humorous) anecdotes and concerns. Try it! You'll like it!
Craig, Stacey, Connie, Wrigley the dog, Elise and Ava
My apologies to those of you who have checked my blog routinely and have found nothing new.
I learned I have cancer (via biopsy) on December 10th. Quite frankly, it has thrown me for a loop. I was advised to cancel my hostessing of close to 20 people at my house, but I went ahead, anyway, and surgery is imminent.
My sister-in-law thanked my husband for his efforts in hosting the Dec. 24th and Dec. 25th event, which went on until 3 a.m. one night and 2 a.m. the other.
News flash: I did all the planning, purchasing, and cooking. The health risks, for me, were considerable because of Covid. My surgeon suggested that I not do it. [Next time, maybe mention me, as well?]
I have seen quite a few of the movies out now and will return tomorrow with comments about: “West Side Story;” “Licorice Pizza;” “C’mon, C’mon;” and others.
Again, my apologies to faithful readers. Oh! And good wishes in the health category are always appreciated. Those were also in short supply.
Daughter Stacey and granddaughters Elise (l) and Ava (r).
Week One in Cancun is in the history books.
We visited several extremely fancy (and equally pricey) restaurants, including “Harry’s,” “Tabu,” “Rosa Negra” (the Black Rose), Captain’s Cove and the Veranda at the Royal Sands.
The daughter and the grandchildren encountered a pig on the beach, being walked by its owner. Naturally, photo opportunities arose.
Our room (C5108) became party central for games and we played euchre, poker, Balderdash, Code Words, and other games.
Uncle Mark (Wilson) arrived from St. Louis a few days in and left a few days early. All of the Covid-19 tests required came back negative and, of our party of 12, only Jessica, Chris Poffenbarger and the granddaughters had not received at least one shot. Masks are required at the facility, but not around the pool. The crowds appear to be about half what they normally would be, but the restaurants mentioned above are teeming with patrons, who are being bombarded by high decibel noise.
The son and daughter-in-law and granddaughters and daughter left today (for Austin and Nashville,
Stacey holds Moira, the pig.
respectively). The Poffenbargers left for St. Louis and Macomb, Illinois.
The weather was sunny every day, but especially windy and, for the first 5 days, I did not get in the pool (nor, in some cases, remove my cover-up) because it was not that hot. On one day (Tuesday) the women visited the spa. I had an aromatherapy massage and, for the first time, I was not pummeled into a week of pain. The daughter has shared that the foot reflexology massage was her favorite.
On Wednesday Scott rented a boat that carried ten of the group out to go snorkeling.
I’m not a big fan of snorkeling. I did not ever get it quite “right” when we visited Hawaii, and I haven’t gotten it right since. Getting in and out of the boat has always been a challenge and I really don’t like fish rubbing against my body, which actually happened in Hawaii when we took a bag of frozen peas and lured fish toward us at Hanama Bay. It’s not a good memory.
For those reasons and others, I did not accompany the group that went out on the boat (which, also, cost $180 an hour). Craig hit his head hard on something on the boat and has a big scab on the top of his head now. He and Mark also commented on the strong current in the ocean, where the snorkeling led them.
Beach at the Royal Sands.
The boat captain also noticed their distress in a strong ocean current). Stacey cut her foot on the sharp coral while swimming back to potentially render aid. The hole in the bottom of her foot concerned me for the rest of her time with us, as I got cellulitis through a sore foot a few years ago, and it was not a laughing matter.
But all have returned home to the U.S. safely, save us. One more week in Paradise.
Sydney Airport on arrival at 9 a.m. Australian time, after leaving the U.S. at 10:45 p.m. on Sunday, January 12, 2013. Arrived Tuesday, the 15th at about 9 am.
Drove for 3 and 1/2 hours to Chicago, then flew from Chicago to San Francisco for departure (4+ hours). Began trek to Australia (13 and 1/2 hours) and was happy to find out that I was on an aisle seat and there was nobody in the middle between me and a nice girl from Canada (Edmunton). I could not sleep and watched “Trouble with the Curve,” part of “The Words,” and lots of re-runs of “The Big Bang Theory” before landing in Sydney and going through customs.
Traveled approximately 7,500 miles and read a lot of magazines before going through customs.
Australian customs crowd,
Holiday Inn near the Rocks in Sydney,
Checked into Holiday Inn at the Rocks (Old Sydney) right across from where our cruise ship is docked at 10 a.m. Aussie time. (It was something like 7 p.m. our time, as they are 16 hours ahead of us.
The cruise ship (The Celebrity Solstice) is visible from our Holiday Inn window.
Here is a picture of our cruise ship from our Holiday Inn window. We move to the Celebrity Solstice tomorrow and begin sailing for Melbourne and New Zealand after that.
Stacey and Craig at Gigi’s our first night, for dinner.
Tonight, we had dinner with Stacey at a nice restaurant (Gigi’s), pizza and lasagna: bill $74. Gelato for dessert. Afterwards, we would go listen to some of Stacey’s flatmates playing at a local bar.
James Morrison on lead vocals, Miles Frasier (in Deere hat) on lead guitar.
Here are The Morrisons, all graduates of Sydney University in music, with Stacey sitting in on one song. Lead guitar Miles Frasier has on his John Deere hat, courtesy of Yours Truly.
Miles, up close and personal, sporting Moline’s Deere hat. The group sang “Sweet Home, Chicago” for Stacey.
I sent John Deere shirts, hats and memorabilia ahead to thank all of Stacey’s friends, especially the Frasiers who took her in for the holidays.
Jimmy on mandolin, Stacey (Wilson) and James (Morrison), aka “Morry.”
Stacey sat in on one of the songs, by invitation, with James Morrison, Jimmy, Ian (on bass) and Miles.
Downtown near our hotel in Sydney, Australia
Some random shots taken of buildings in the area.
I think this might be City Hall, but all I know for sure is that we are on George Street, near the docks, which is a very trendy, nice area of town. All of Stacey’s friends in Australia were very kind and nice to us (which is more than I can say for the one person I know in Australia) and we had a great evening hanging out with the extremely talented young musicians.
It’s raining in Tennessee and the severe weather and storms hadn’t let up as of 5 p.m. CDT. Local papers in Nashville said it was the worst flooding since 1974.
According to the Channel 5 news in Nashville ([email protected] and the newspaper the Tennessean, there is a tornado watch for most of southwest Tennessee until 6 p.m. Six inches of rain fell Saturday night, and another 4 inches is expected by late Saturday. At 4:45 p.m., rain was still falling.
All high school proms were being canceled. There were 88 reports of road accidents and 30 people reported being stranded in their homes or cars. I40 in southwest Tennessee was shut down and I40 was shut down at the 59-mile marker on Saturday morning.
In the photo to the left, the black car belonged to a friend of my daughter’s and was parked in the Belmont University parking lot in Nashville. It was totaled.
In Memphis, the Interstate was closed. Franklin, where many rich and powerful stars reside (Nicole Kidman, Keith Urban, et. al.) was flooded. The Nashville Sounds baseball game was canceled.
This photo was taken by a friend from his window.
Tornado warnings had been issued for southeast Davidson County, eastern Williamson county, northern Rutherford, and western Wilson County. The Tennessee Department of Transportation canceled all roadwork on I440.
Another friend sent the picture below of her Nashville front yard under water. (Good thing the daughter lives on the third floor; many of her friends have 3 inches of water in their basements!)