Well, as promised, today I will tell you the answers to the questions posed in my Ask Me Anything post last week. I always enjoy these, because I like to learn little things about people, and most of the time, feel awkward asking the questions. So I like to be prompted, and it seems some of you feel the same.
Dee wanted to know:
In a perfect situation (meaning you could afford it, you would have a job if you wanted one, family issues wouldn't be an issue, there was no pandemic crap to deal with, etc. ...), where would you live?
Good question. To be honest, I really like where we are now in Philadelphia. It's close to mountains, oceans, lakes, and forests. There's all kinds of stuff to do if /when we want to, nearby and lots of it is free. But I also think I would like living in New England or Canada. Of course, I also always think it would be nice to live in Ireland, but I'm not certain I have what it takes to be a successful expat. And I adore Puerto Rico, but the climate would kill me if I lived there all of the time. Best to just visit, because I can deal with tropical weather when I'm on vacation ... 😀
Do you have a favorite ice cream/frozen dessert? (Because summer refuses to leave us.)
First of all, it needs to be said that I have seldom met a dessert I didn't like. But two particular faves have their origins at different ends of the state of Pennsylvania. Growing up in WV, there was a dairy in Pittsburgh (Isaly's) that made a wonderful concoction called a Klondike bar - they are pretty much everywhere today, but back then they were only in that region of the country, and they were just a big block of vanilla ice cream coated with chocolate. And I am guessing back then that they contained even more fat and other ingredients that made them wonderful than the mass market ones you get in the grocery store today. And when we moved to Philadelphia, I was introduced to Rita's Water Ice gelato - a cup of frozen custard layered with your choice of water ice, and something that has never been successfully duplicated anywhere else I've traveled where they claim to have the same thing.
And now if someone would bring me one of each I would be grateful.
Valerie had a question to really think about:
OK, here goes ... if you could meet a historical figure, who would it be and why?
To some extent, this changes regularly, even sometimes during any given day. A lot of time, it's the people you would expect, and sometimes I find someone really obtuse that I decide to obsess over. But I would love to ask Johann Gutenberg what he really thought about his printing press, and what he would imagine it would become/do/make possible/mean to people. Because I think his answers would be completely different than what I would expect him to say.
Deb's question hit me hard:
I was inspired to do all the things I do because I had a great-grandmother who quilted, knitted, wove, and made a yellow tomato relish that my dad talked about his whole life. Who inspired your creative self?
This hit me because when I tried to find an answer, there kinda sorta wasn't a single, personal one. Neither of my parents were "creative" in the ways we are talking about. All of my grandparents had died by the time I was born, so I have no idea what they might have contributed. Oh, my mother learned needlepoint and became a counted cross-stich expert in her later years, when a cousin of hers taught her so she would have an activity she enjoyed since she was confined to a wheelchair. But I was already married and out of the house then. I think I was inspired by no one and everyone. No one in my immediate circle of family and close friends did much of anything like the things we talked about. My parents had friends who grew a large garden every summer and canned things; one of my mother's friends was a knitter and used to make lovely blankets for her grandchildren. I think I saw/read (in novels) random people/characters who did these things that sounded interesting to me, and so when I could, I would try to do them or learn them. I do have to say that my mom did show me how to do counted cross-stitch, so that is the only thing I do now with any real-life personal connection.
Kym asked me something that I immediately knew what my answer would be:
OK, Bridget ... what's your superpower?
Adaptability. I find that I can adapt somewhat easily to nearly any situation I have ever experienced. That is not to say that I am always happy about it, or not nervous/seething/whatever inside, but I adapt pretty easily on the outside. I think this is because I had a somewhat tenuous childhood, where we moved A LOT, occasionally got farmed out to relatives, and were not that financially stable. I had no choice but to go with the flow, so to speak. It also provided me with Part B of my superpower, which is the ability to talk to anyone, anywhere, about anything. My parents were extreme extroverts, and expected us to interact with others, regardless of personal preference. As a result, I may not feel all that comfortable everywhere, but I can carry on a decent conversation. The downside of this is that I am often stuck spending time with people who glom onto me because they have no one else to talk to; I have always been a particular favorite of older men who tell me their stories from World War II, and I can be in a room of a million people, and if a nun is at the other end of the room, you can be certain she will find me. Superpowers are not always what they are cracked up to be ...
Kim wanted to find out:
If you could teach everyone in the world one skill, what would it be?
GAH. Only one??? I'm gonna say, how to read and write and though you think those are two skills, I see them as two parts of a whole. I believe that knowing how to read and write gives everyone all of the possibilities in the world.
OK, there you go - at least for this round! Hopefully you found my answers acceptable, and if you did not, well, such is life. Today on my way to work, I passed a woman wearing a sweatshirt that said, "Be Yourself. They'll Adjust."
That pretty much says it all.
Enjoy the first weekend of fall - or if you are in the southern hemisphere, happy spring!