They are working on the main NYC post office – it is an elegant building.

In the know:

The lines can be long at the main windows in the front of the building. In the back, there is a small nondescript door which leads to one very efficient post office agent. He is adept at managing the small amount of traffic which comes through that door. dievca has waited 5 minutes most to post items to Europe, etc. A hidden gem of calmness in chaotic NYC.

Photos: dievca, NYC Main Post Office 8th Avenue 02/2019

Sending Kisses to You for Valentine’s Day

There’s this place in me where your fingerprints still rest,
your kisses still linger,
and your whispers softly echo.
It’s the place where a part of you will forever be a part of me.

~Gretchen Kemp

Perhaps you have seen this before … dievca hadn’t.

An intriguing start to a Monday.
dievca imagines that her coffee will just taste better.

Good Morning!

“The morning was full of sunlight and hope.” ~Kate Chopin

Photo: dievca 02/2019 NYC

Good Morning!


“Red sky at night, sailor’s delight. Red sky in morning, sailor’s warning.”

Normally, weather moves from west to east. In the mid-latitudes, the prevailing winds are westerlies. This means storm systems generally move in from the West.

The colors we see in the sky are due to the rays of sunlight being split into colors of the spectrum as they pass through the atmosphere and ricochet off the gases, water vapor and particles. The amounts of water vapor and dust particles in the atmosphere are good indicators of weather conditions. They also determine which colors we will see in the sky.

During sunrise and sunset the sun is low in the sky, and it transmits light through the thickest part of the atmosphere. A red sky suggests an atmosphere loaded with dust and moisture particles. The shorter wavelengths, such as blue, are scattered and broken up. We see the red wavelengths. the longest in the color spectrum, are able to continue through the atmosphere.

Red sky at night, sailor’s delight.

A red sky at night means that the setting sun is sending its light through a high concentration of dust particles. This usually indicates high pressure and stable air coming in from the west and good weather will follow.

Red sky in morning, sailor’s warning.

A red sunrise can mean that a high pressure system (good weather) has already passed, thus indicating that a storm system (low pressure) may be moving to the east. A morning sky that is a deep, fiery red can indicate that there is high water content in the atmosphere. So, rain could be on its way.

dievca had the pleasure of a beautiful sunset, yesterday.
Made her evening.

Photos: dievca 02/2019 NYC

Depending upon an 8+ lbs rodent for advice….Happy Groundhog Day! (repost)

There is one day a year when Americans turn to a small mammal to predict the weather, Groundhog Day. It’s the day we celebrate the American tradition of finding out if there will be six more weeks of winter

Thousands will converge on the small Pennsylvania town of Punxsutawney to see if Punxsutawney Phil will emerge from his temporary burrow and see his shadow. If that happens, winter weather will continue across the United States. But if Phil doesn’t see his shadow, spring temperatures are on the way.

Groundhog Day is derived from ancient Christian and Roman customs in Germany, where Europeans celebrated Candlemas, a holiday marking the Virgin Mary’s presentation of Jesus at the Temple in Jerusalem 40 days after his birth. Candlemas is observed on Feb. 2nd. If there were clear skis on that usually meant an extended winter. German immigrants brought the rituals to the U.S.

Punxsutawney Phil was named an official immortal oracle in 1887 by a group of groundhog hunters from Punxsutawney. Rivals such as Staten Island Chuck and Gen. Beauregard Lee have tried to undermine his fame, but Phil has maintained his cultural significance.

For those who refuse to believe in the fantasy of Phil’s immortality are right. Groundhogs in captivity typically live no longer than 10 years. And the U.S. National Climatic Data Center has found that Phil is only correct about 40% of the time.

Ah, well, it inspired a great movie!

Phil Connors: (to the groundhog) “Don’t drive angry! Don’t drive angry!”


Phil Connors: When Chekhov saw the long winter, he saw a winter bleak and dark and bereft of hope. Yet we know that winter is just another step in the cycle of life. But standing here among the people of Punxsutawney and basking in the warmth of their hearths and hearts, I couldn’t imagine a better fate than a long and lustrous winter.

I Need Coffee – but not a Blonde Roast

dievca had a conversation about coffee with Cinn of Cinnamon and Sparkles and Cinn stated that she likes a good “Blonde Roast”. dievca had no idea what that meant, so she went searching.

When Starbucks® promotes the term Blonde Roast, they define it in their advertising as not related to color so much as “light bodied and flavorful – our easiest-drinking coffee” and “a true light roast”, yet when the beans are compared to a standard roast chart, they match more to a Medium Roast level.

A true definition of Blonde is when the beans are roasted to a very light level at which a phenomenon called “First Crack” is achieved, but not beyond. Because of that a Blonde Roast will always be more acidic than darker roasts of the same coffee.

Heat breaks down the acidity of a coffee bean as it roasts longer and hotter. The high acidity of Blonde Roast is generally perceived as a lemony, citrusy or sour taste. Darker roasts experience more of the “Maillard reaction”, which primarily refers to the caramelization of sugar and reactions with the beans’ amino acids that produce buttery, caramel tones, while the citrusy notes are being reduced.

A Blonde Roast would be at the beginning of this chart before a light roast (around 415 F):

Where does that leave a Blonde Roast acid-wise?

Using the pH Scale for reference, here are a few acid/base numbers from liquids we recognize:

9.0 : Tap water adjusted for high alkalinity to avoid leaching of lead and other metals from the pipes
8.0 : Seawater
7.0 : A common “neutral” reference point for distilled water, etc.
6.3 : Naturally occurring water as found in mountain streams and many springs (not hot springs)
5.9 : A common reading for ripe-bean brewed Dark Roast coffee (see picture 3 above)
5.4 : A common reading for ripe-bean brewed Medium Roast coffee (see picture 2 above)
4.7 – 4.9 : A common reading for brewed coffee from commercial coffee brands
4.4 – 4.6 : A common reading for ripe-bean brewed Blonde Roasts (see picture 1 above)
4.4 : Tomato juice
3.0 : Vinegar (ranges from 2.0 to 3.5 depending on type and concentration)
1.0 : Battery Acid

Hmmm — that might be why dievca prefers a Dark Roast, less acidic and carmelization of the sugars…

Whew! this was a lot for a Monday – Thank Goodness dievca has her:

Thank you to the website “I Need Coffee”, click the link for a more in-depth discussion about roasts.