Monday, April 29, 2019

A much better day...

Upon leaving the store after the incident in the prior post, I remembered that I needed to go to the post office to pick up some stamps.  On the way in, a male customer exiting greeted me with "I've got the door, Ma'am."  "Thank you, sir."   Aaahhh...that feels much better!  Of course, after the incident a few days ago (previous post), it wouldn't take much to be a huge improvement!

Once we learned from the Physical Therapist that my wearing sandals with reasonable heels won't irritate my back issues, I looked on line for some more sandals, definitely slides.  And the following caught my eye:

With a fairly big front strap, it seems like they'll offer a bit of extra security. The perforations can help with cooling, the buckle should provide some width adjustment, and the wedge is about the same height as my existing sandals.   Best of all, my wife told me to buy them.   "Go for the tan ones first.  Then if they fit well, you can order a pair in both black and white.  You couldn't ask for better sandals.  They'll coordinate with every outfit you own.   And show off that pedicure."

My comment: "I really hope they're comfortable."   "Me too...your closet will be so much more organized once the only shoes it contains are 1 pair of flats, 3 pairs of these sandals, and the 3 pairs of sandals you already wear."

I'm glad she likes them...and I've ordered the tan ones.  When they arrive we'll see how well they fit...hopefully good!



Friday, April 26, 2019

“Pray it ain’t so.”

At my initial Physical Therapy appointment recently,  I was recognized as female, despite my voluminous paperwork, which was clearly marked “M”.   Must have been the black capris, turtleneck blouse, flats, purse, nccklace, long hair and light pink nails. 

So at my most recent appointment (just before Easter) I decided to try to determine whether wearing my slide sandals this spring would hurt PT progress.   My wife and I first wondered about that a few days ago, now that sandal weather is on the doorstep.   So for the next visit, we decided I should wear the outfit shown below, complete with my white sandals.  No better way to get an answer than by wearing them to my next appointment.

From the moment I walked in the door, and for the rest of my appointment, I was referred to as female…starting with “follow me please, Miss (insert now-female given name here.)”   Followed by Ms. (with last name) several times, then my female therapist asked a question of another therapist and referred to me as  “she.” 

As for the question about my sandals, the therapist told me: “sandals don’t provide much support.  But you can change to something with more support if they begin to hurt, and you should be fine.  Just don’t wear your 3” or 4”  heels for a few months.”  Wow…wonderful!  I was savoring every minute of affirmation as the girl I enjoy being.

But I hadn't the slightest inkling as to what was about to occur after I left the Physical Therapy office…

One of the exercises the therapist showed me, to start doing daily at home, involves the use of an item to be picked up at a nearby pharmacy.  So I stopped in at one my wife and I both occasionally use.  The female clerk/greeter addressed me appropriately, and gave me the aisle number for what I needed.   In retrospect, I recall noticing the male clerk standing beside her was "checking me out" quite intently, and I briefly wondered about that, but dismissed it.   I hadn’t seen either of them before.  Maybe both were new employees? 

They both were working their cash registers when I approached with my purchase in hand, and got in line.  Very busy at that point in time.  The lady being waited on by the male clerk smiled at both the lady in front of me, and yours truly, apologizing for taking so long.  The lady directly in front of me in line, then got the female clerk once she became available.  That left me waiting for the male clerk, probably about mid-40something.  He didn’t seem at all friendly to her, and when it was my turn, curtly gave me the price of the item. 

I still don’t know why I pulled cash out of my purse rather than my credit card, which turned out to be a good decision.  (Women's intuition?)  While he was getting a bag for my purchase and starting to make change, he leaned over the counter and whispered quietly (so as not to be heard by others nearby), but in a bit of a huffy tone: “Are you a man or a woman?” 

If I had been sitting, I’d have fallen out of my chair. 

The only other time I’ve been asked that question was several years ago, by an elderly resident at the nursing home.  And since staff knew my gender, I answered truthfully.  This time around, having just come from a very affirming PT session,  something like that exchange couldn’t have been further from my mind.

In a split-second decision, I decided to not answer his question directly.  He didn’t know who I was, since I had used cash.  So I replied with a question of my own:  “So, which do YOU think?”   “Definitely a man.  Why are you wearing women's clothes? ”  (Perhaps I WAS a bit under-dressed: no makeup - but fortunately minimal beard shadow as it was soon after my morning shave, no bracelet, no earrings, no wedding ring, no perfume.)   Side-stepping his question again, I responded: “Well, you had a 50% chance of guessing correctly, and today's your lucky day.  If I were a natal woman, you'd be in serious trouble right now with management, for humiliating a customer in public.” 

Undeterred and unrepentant, this guy kept "beating the dead horse":  “So you’re a tranny then.”  “No – transgender.”  He said: “Same difference, either way you’re a tranny, and I thank God I’m not a tranny like you.”  “I’m glad you aren’t, too.  You’re far too impertinent.  But remember, 'it is what it is.'”  “No, it isn’t.  You need to start dressing and acting like a man.”  I cut him off at that point, because the tone seemed to indicate he was preparing to recite the merits of Deuteronomy 22:5.   “That’s your opinion, sir, and you’re entitled to it.   Furthermore, I don’t know about "your God", but my God loves and respects everyone equally.  Yes, even people like you.  And I thank my God that most people don't think the way you do.”  I got a very disgusted grimace/angry stare as he handed me the package, and my change, with nary a word of “thanks for being a customer.”

Apparently I "got his goat."  So I decided to agitate him some more, this time with a big smile:  “Now, let’s reboot this discussion.  You and your family have a blessed Easter and a wonderful weekend.  I know I will, with my family around me.”  From him, nothing but that disgusted grimace  and glare (again…)   

Could he finally have realized: “nothing to see here…time to move on?”   Naaahhhh…

As I started toward the door, I had to walk past the female clerk.  As soon as I began moving, he rushed over to her and started whispering in her ear.  Not overly quietly.  Why would I suspect it might be regarding me?  All I had to hear was “tranny” as I passed, and it became obvious.  

The female clerk looked directly at me as I passed by, smiled sweetly regardless of the still-babbling idiot by her side, thanked me for shopping with them, and added “Have a wonderful Easter, Ma’am.”  “You too, dear!”  By that point, the opinionated, obnoxious guy looked like he was choking on his own saliva.  (Rather humorous to see, I might add.)  No problem, he deserved it.

Before you ask, no, I don’t plan on making an issue of this incident, as it’s a store my wife and I both patronize on occasion.   I won’t “rock the boat” within about 50 miles of home on this side of the bay, for obvious reasons.  But I’m happy that instinct told me to pay cash.   IMHO I don’t think he’ll be around long…he’s definitely not customer-oriented and was not friendly with the natal woman in front of me, either.  I forgot to look back to see if others were in line to witness his "performance."  

If I were his boss, there would be no Academy Award for him.  He’d be out of a job – for cause - the moment I caught wind of his “job-lack-of-performance.”  Had this happened anywhere across the bay, I WOULD have asked for the manager.  And if he WERE the manager, then I’d have asked for contact info for his boss.

An hour afterward, I was still shaking my head in disbelief.  Unfortunately this type of thing is likely to become more frequent in the lives of each of us.  Is he an evangelical, ultra-conservative, far-right-wing hater as well?  Very likely.  (The “powers that be” in DC keep stirring this type of behavior, with name-calling,  chipping away at basic human civility, LGBTQ protections, and adding restrictions to our lives.   Their "base" loves it.)

“Pray it ain’t so…”   And remember to VOTE in 2020.

End of rant...


PS:  In retrospect, if I had answered "Woman" to his initial question,  I wonder what he would have done?  Ask for my driver's license to look for that telltale "F" or "M"?  Rush around the counter, to grab my "pussy" and verify what's between my legs (like from that old movie, the "Crocodile Dundee" test?  As Mick Dundee said, "Just making sure" after being introduced to a very masculine-looking-and-sounding woman.)   Call the police to try to turn me in for impersonating a woman?   None would be desirable outcomes, for either of us.  Police presence is embarrassing for everyone, the subsequent lawsuits are messy, and take forever to resolve.  And the only ones who win are lawyers.  Fortunately, that didn't happen...

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Holiday Greeting

To each of my readers who today are celebrating Easter, may you have a fabulous holiday!

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Another interesting day...

It was another interesting day.  I dropped the antique car off at my mechanic’s in another town, for some air conditioning work (the seals were failing on the compressor.)  He knows my gender, and simply omits any gender-specific references.  

My wife picked me up, and we ran some errands in that town.   

At one stop I was addressed as “Ma’am.” At the second, no gender specific greeting was used.  Then we stopped at our favorite sit-down restaurant for lunch…  The male customer going in ahead of us held the door for us saying: “go ahead, ladies.”  We both replied “thank you, sir!”  They were seated, and then the host greeted us: “Good afternoon, ladies.  Will a booth by the window work for you?”  It worked, and he seated us.  For the entire meal, we were two ladies having lunch…a very pleasant thing.  Female customers who went by smiled, and I returned the smile.  (My wife’s back was to them…)

When it was time for the check, the server placed it between us…as he should have.  (And my wife paid the bill…)

Here is a picture of my outfit for the day:

Another day of affirmation!

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Seen as female (again.)

Haven't been posting much lately....due to  a back issue causing me to have to go to physical therapy.  Not sure what I did to cause it.  So, like my 52-year-old antique car, I guess I’m a 70 year old museum piece with a lot of miles on me, and things are starting to wear out!

Another interesting happening at Mom's nursing home:  they periodically bring in musicians to perform for the residents, and she recently attended one of the recitals.  That day's musician has seen me before, but we have only exchanged pleasantries.   I arrived a bit late (wearing capris and flats, of course).  
As I walked in after the start of the recital, the performer noticed me, and announced to Mom that “You have company, Miss (insert Mom's first name here) - your daughter is here.”  Nobody corrected her, including the residents. (Bet that has a few of them confused - because many are new residents.)  But that’s always good…to be seen as female.  This could be habit-forming!

Since my last note, I prepped the antique for a car show, and two weekends ago, spent a day there.  With over a hundred cars, it was fun.  Met lots of nice people.  Beautiful weather…70’s and sunny enough to need sunscreen.  No new problems developed, and that’s a good thing.    Capri pants and flats were perfect, and I didn’t have any issues.  But I confused more than a few people as to my gender....

Just a bit of ferroequinology this time:  The following is former Reading RR #2102, painted to resemble Delaware & Hudson #302,  operating a passenger excursion back in the fall of 1973 on the Pittsburg and Shawmut Railroad, at one time a "Class 1 railroad" which was dissolved in the mid 2000's and is now an integral part of the Genesee & Wyoming RR system in Pennsylvania.   This particular picture was taken at the coaling/water stop in Brookville, 

The following pic is from the same excursion...note the coal cars in the background...

You can find more info about this trip (and another pic) in an earlier post dated 2.7.2014, and titled "Feel the Thunder..."

Enjoy the upcoming Easter Holiday...


Monday, April 15, 2019

For my USA readers:

Happy Tax Day!   Hope you get a nice big refund!  Some of us didn't.  :-(


Thursday, April 11, 2019

Another day....

The winter here alternated between cold and warm, but there hasn’t been much snow.  And now, “spring has sprung.”  That’s a good thing!   

But there hasn’t been any official “Mandy” time.  It’s been my usual “turtleneck blouses, stirrup pants, panties, knee high nylons, flats, purse and long hair, with long nails.Until today.  Today I had a doctor appointment for a back issue, and I chose to wear capri pants instead of stirrups, with pantyhose in place of knee highs.  I’ve seen lots of women dressed that way, and I finally (it’s been a long winter) wanted to be able to be “just one of the girls” for the day.

So I wore the following:

Most of the folks who knew me at my Primary’s office have moved on, so I think I confused some of the aides there.   But everyone simply omitted gender specific forms of address, and “life goes on.”

I was referred to an imaging facility for an x-ray, and THAT was an experience! (Nowhere on the papers did it specify my gender, and my given name is definitely female.)  From the time I arrived to  the time I walked out, I was addressed as female. 

When the aide took me for the x-ray, she escorted me to the dressing room, and told me to remove my blouse, capris, and bra, but leave my panties and pantyhose on.  So I did…well except for removing the bra, I wasn’t wearing one!  She helped tie the open-back gown so I wasn’t showing much besides the back of my panties, and then helped position me on the machine.  

When we were done, I heard “have a nice day, Ma’am.”  I returned the favor!

I love being treated as female…


Monday, April 1, 2019

Arizona 2001

Things are quiet here as far as travel goes.  That forces me to go back in time, to previous travel, and the first stop below is a ghost town called Two Guns, Arizona.  This and the following pictures were taken during a trip west in 2001.

This town has had its ups and downs over the years.  Wikipedia gives the following details:

As white settlers began to populate the area in the mid-19th century, Two Guns was recognized as an ideal place to cross Canyon Diablo, first by wagon, then later by vehicle.

It was the site of a mass murder of Apaches by their Navajo enemies in 1878.
During the winter of 1879-80, Billy the Kid and his outlaw gang hid in the ruins of a stone house and corral on the west rim of Canyon Diablo, across from Two Guns.

In 1880, long before Two Guns was established as a settlement, the construction of the Santa Fe Railway was progressing across northern Arizona. At the location where the rail line crossed Canyon Diablo, about 3 mi (4.8 km) north of Two Guns, construction was delayed while a trestle was built. A settlement populated by male work crews was established near the construction site and was named Canyon Diablo, after the nearby canyon. The settlement "quickly became a wild and lawless place as drifters, gamblers, and outlaws made their way to town". Four men employed by the Hashknife Ranch robbed the train at Canyon Diablo in 1889, then fled on horseback with $100,000 in currency, 2,500 new silver dollars, $40,000 in gold coins, as well as silver watches, jewelry, and diamonds. A posse led by sheriff Buckey O'Neill pursued the bandits, but recovered less than $100 when the men were captured. Years later, after release from prison, one of the thieves disclosed that the stolen goods, along with their rifles, had been buried in the canyon rim near Two Guns. The location remains popular with treasure hunters.

The National Old Trails Highway (called the "Santa Fe Highway" in Arizona) was built in 1907 in Arizona, and loosely followed the railway. The highway crossed the dry river bed of Canyon Diablo at the Two Guns location, and zig-zagged up and down each embankment. In 1915, Canyon Diablo Bridge opened at the Two Guns crossing, and was used until 1938 when a new bridge was built nearby.

The first settler at Two Guns was Ed Randolph.   In 1922, Earle and Louise Cundiff purchased 320 acres  of land from Randolph at this location for $1,000, and built a store, restaurant, and gasoline pumps.  Harry E. Miller leased a property from the Cundiffs in 1925 and began extensive construction. Calling himself "Chief Crazy Thunder", Miller wanted to capitalize on the beauty of Canyon Diablo and the flow of passing tourists.  Along the canyon rim Miller erected a zoo with cages made of brick, mortar and chicken wire. A restaurant and Indian gift shop were opened For a fee, visitors were led on a tour which began at a Hopi house Miller had built, where rolls of colored piki bread was made and sold. They then followed a paved path down the side of the canyon to a soft drink stand at the bottom. Flamboyant signs were placed along the highway, and Miller named his establishment "Fort Two Guns" as an homage to silent movie actor William S. "Two Guns" Hart, with whom Miller claimed to have previously worked.

The Cundiffs applied for a post office under the name "Two Guns" in 1924, but it was refused. The post office was renamed "Canyon Lodge".

In 1926, the highway designation was changed to U.S. Route 66. That same year, Cundiff and Miller had a disagreement about the details of their lease, and Miller shot the unarmed Cundiff to death. He was later acquitted of the killing.

The interior of Miller's store burned in 1929, and soon after, Louise Cundiff built her own tourist store. The following year, Miller left the state. Cundiff remarried, and in 1934 opened the Two Guns Texaco service station along a new alignment of Route 66. Behind it they relocated the zoo (which closed prior to 1950).
In 1938, a new bridge across Canyon Diablo was built, and Route 66 began following Interstate 40 at the Two Guns location.

A more modern service station was built at Two Guns in 1963, and in the late 1960s a motel, western tavern, reptile exhibit, and new zoo were added. Later, a Shell service station was built and a KOA campground opened.  The service station burned in 1971 and Two Guns began its decline. The ruins of many former structures remain, including the trading post, campground, old cottages, zoo, and burned-out service station.

Too bad we didn't know about all of the above during our trip.  There was a lot more to see than just looking in from the road...

Next was a stop at Meteor the turnoff to the well-known Meteor Crater in AZ.  Once again, Wikipedia to the rescue.

Meteor City is an abandoned tourist trap... It has an estimated elevation of 5,033 feet (1,534 m) above sea level.  Located next to Leupp Corner, it is so-named because of its proximity to Meteor Crater. Created as a tourist stop, it is the turn-off of Route 66to visit the crater. At one time the sign upon entering the town read, "Population: 1".

And lastly was a stop at the Meteor Crater itself...details from their website (yes, it's open and operating!)

The world's best preserved meteorite impact site on Earth.  Located just minutes from Interstate 40 and the old Route 66 in Northern Arizona near Winslow.  Meteor Crater is the spectacular result of a collision that rocked the American Southwest approximately 50,000 years ago with the energy of more than 20 million tons of TNT. Situated under the wide skies of the Arizona High Desert, Meteor Crater offers an interactive educational experience for the entire family in a beautiful, natural setting. The Meteor Crater Visitor Center is located on the rim of the Crater.

These destinations were memorable, ones I will never forget.  But I have more to relay - when I have the urge to write some more.