October 15, 2008: New Parking at Eleven80

37 Days to Baby Day! (34 Weeks and Five Days Pregnant)

12 Work Days Left for Dominica; House closing scheduled in 6 days.

Everything is getting so close.  We are really starting to feel the pressure as we need to have everything done very, very soon.  Dominica brought home the boxes last night and the hallway is full of boxes that we need to assemble and fill with stuff.  We had no time to start the packing process last night so we are expecting to be able to start today.  Just a few boxes each day is the plan starting with the books.  Lots of books.

Dominica with 8 Month Belly

My brain got plenty of sleep but my body definitely feels the two days of swimming.  I do real laps and don’t play around in the pool so I have gotten a bit of exercise the last two days and I feel it.  We have been going to the New York Health and Racquet Club on Whitehall.  They are the only gym that we can find in the area that has a pool and a pool is what I need.  I can keep myself going to a pool day after day but using weight machines or whatever always falls apart eventually.  The pool is also much easier on your body – very unlikely to do any real damage from swimming.

Dominica discovered that HP’s 2133 mini laptop (a.k.a. NetBook) machines have dropped dramatically in price recently.  The HP2133 is extra cool because online all of the other NetBooks that I have seen, this one ships with SUSE Linux installed rather than some form of Fedora.

BluRay Players are finally becoming affordable.  The Samsung BD-P1500 is just a little over two hundred dollars now from Amazon.  Not too bad considering it was well over four hundred for most of the year for an older model.  They are getting into the range where it makes a lot of sense to get one.  If we weren’t in the process of closing on the house I would have ordered this today.  Dominica is very anxious to get a BluRay player and we have been thinking that we were going to hold off until we could just get a Sony PS3 instead but now the BluRay players are so inexpensive that getting one of those and an XBOX 360 is about the same price as the PS3 alone.

Today began another round of layoffs at the office.  I think that this is my fourth or fifth round of layoffs since starting here.  I am not concerned for myself, but I do know people who are affected again this round.  Constant layoffs are no fun.  Everyone always wonders if it will be their department next.  It happens so often that people just keep the idea of the layoffs in the back of their minds all of the time.  It is not good for moral or productivity.

Much like Eastman Kodak through the nineties.  I remember that the layoffs just came and came in waves.  It became a constant culture of layoffs with no end in sight.  It was just business as usual at Kodak after a while and that is what is happening here.  Layoff announcements don’t even invoke a response anymore as everyone forgets when they start and stop.

Oreo is feeling so much better each day.  The steroids are really doing the trick.  Of course, we don’t want to keep him on steroids all of the time as it is not healthy for him, but for the moment it is really helping him get over his horrible allergies.  It is so rough watching his life deteriorate down to nothing but scratching and scratching.  He spends all of his time doing it, and he is very unhappy.

For lunch today, three of us drove out to Pooja to get Indian buffet.  I was starving before going to lunch having skipped breakfast.  Then, of course, I ate too much at the buffet and felt like crap all afternoon.  Dumb, dumb, dumb.

I caught the express train home and Dominica managed to pick me up as I walked along Broad heading towards Eleven80.  Today was a very easy commuting day.

I was not very hungry after my big lunch and so decided to skip dinner this evening.  Dominica was so tired that she really did not want to have dinner either.  So she just had some oatmeal and vegetables.  We watched a little Fresh Prince of Bel Air and were off to bed by nine thirty!  Crazy, I know.

Tomorrow I am home with Oreo and tonight is my chance to really catch up on some sleep.  Tomorrow Dominica is working an extra hour to cover for someone at the office and so really needs her sleep tonight as working really wears her out.  Luckily it was on a Thursday that they needed her to work extra so that she didn’t have to drive Oreo to and from daycare like she normally has to do.  So in reality her day tomorrow is only marginally longer than normal.  It might actually be shorter.

We found out tonight that the Eleven80 Halloween Party has been scheduled for October 30th which is our very last night staying at Eleven80 before we move completely to Peekskill and give up the apartment.  So we might go now that we know that it is possible.  We had a really good time last year.  Oreo loves getting all dressed up for parties.

Speaking of changes at Eleven80.  We also found out that starting November 1st, there is no more valet parking at Eleven80.  Instead of using valets to park the cars under Military Park the building has worked out an agreement to allow residents to park at 1160 Raymond Blvd. in the garage directly next door to Eleven80 where they can get to and from their own cars anytime that they want.

It may not sound as nice as valet parking but I am positive that this will do wonders for the building.  Having nothing but valet service and having no space in which to operate it really does not work well.  It works better in Manhattan where you need your car only seldom but in Newark you need it far too often to always have to deal with having it taken away and brought around for you.  The new parking does cost 25% more than the old parking but personally I think that it is probably going to be well worth it.

The thing that is awful, in a way, is that the new parking scheme takes effect the instant that our lease is up.  We end at midnight, October 31st and that is when the new parking begins.  I am curious as to the logistics of moving all of those cars from Military Park’s garage which is valet access only to 1160 which requires the residents to drive from one to the other.  I wonder if anyone has thought about that yet.  That is going to be a mess!  I am SO glad that Dominica and I are not coming “home” to Eleven80 that night but driving straight to Peekskill after work.

It is just sad, though, because we were some of the most vocal opponents of the valet scheme.  It just didn’t work and caused problems no end.  The street has been a mess with cars double and triple parked, using side streets, being blocked in, getting left out all night, etc.  The valets were just starting to get into the groove, though, after two years and it has not been so bad for a while.  But the constant parking tickets and other hassles have only gotten worse.  Too bad that we will never get to park in the new garage.  That would have made living at Eleven80 much nicer.

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