My Life

What I Want

And How I Think and Feel

By Donald J. Warren


  1. Willow My Home
  2. My Life What I Want to Do
  3. History: Willow Winds
  4. The Neighborhood: A Great Place
  5. Politics: Changes I Would Like


I live in Willow New York Part of the Town of Woodstock Surrounded by the Catskill Mountains It's part of the Catskill New YorK State Park with peaks thirty two to forty two hundred feet high in a flat valley some seven hundred fifty feet above sea level. We are protected by the mountains and we're over 100 miles from the ocean. We have lots of hedges, trees and bushes and real green grass that get plenty of rain -- so we don't have to worry about forest fires, mudslides, toronados, or hurricans. We have a lot of tall trees around the property which is fenced in with hedges. The views are really beautiful. It gets very cold here in winter especially after Christmas, and warm in summer but cools off at night or when there is a storm. Usually 10 to 15 degrees cooler than Kingston, NY. By the end of February -- some skyers wear shorts! We had a stream which cut through our back yard when it rained and which seeped into the basement and flooded it before the highway department diverted it. Another stream bounds our property across the road - it runs all year. Out back is a stone fire place and grill. Beyond is a summer house for sitting and eating. Across the dry stream is a regulation size tennis court. And beside it is a winterized cabin with a porch. There are sheds for lawn mowers and tools and a carriage house with a storage attic and a two car garage. There is a Post Office within 200 feet. Four different roads come together at the corner. There are quite a few good neighbors on each road. We are 3 miles from the Lake Hill fire station, and 7 miles from Woodstock and their rescue squad. And it's between 17 and 20 miles from Willow to Kingston, two hospitals and the south bound thruway entrance, 92 miles going south to New York City. It is 23 miles to Saugerties and the north bound thruway, which leads to Albany some 35 miles further north. Outside of the Post Office there is little social life here. The Adirondack - Pine Hill Trailways Buses come through here each way some three or four times a day, to Kingston and beyond, on State Route 212, about 1000 feet down the road from our house. It's a milk run - they stop anywhere to pick up or drop off people. Through Lake Hill, Shady, Bearsville, Woodstock, and West Hurley. The other way, Mt. Tremper to Route 28 south to Boiceville, 5 miles, Mt. Tremper, Route 28, north thru Mt. Pleasant to Phonicia, 15 miles. My daughter and I have a good home here, thanks to my dear departed wife Ruthe and her family. It costs me a lot of money just to keep it -- some $8,000 a year in school and general taxes and a lot more for oil, propane, and electric heating, and cutting grass and hedges, maintenance and painting as needed. I use electric heat as much as possible. It has not gone up nearly as much as oil or propane. Made with 51% coal, 20% nuclear and maybe some hydro power.

My Life - What I Want to Do

Now that my wife is gone, I like meeting people, making friends and being with my daugher. I'm not good at remembering faces or names unless I can write them down and get a photo. Most important is getting their phone number! And maybe their E-mail address. I really enjoy living with my two Cock-a-Pooh dogs. They need to be let out, fed, petted, brushed and taken to the vet and the dog groomer! They sleep on the bed or very near by give me a kiss and warn of strangers. There are a number of good restaurants in the area. And I particularly like being with women whom I can entertain as often as I wish and spend money on them like mad! I like to play chess - come try me! Please call first: 845-679-2989. I will take you out to dinner if you can beat me. My girl friend is 5' 1½" tall, green eyes, brown hair and only weights a mere 112 pounds. Says she loves me! Fits my dreams perfectly! I love being in love and fantasize about being loved. Puts me to sleep when nothing else works. But crazy things can happen - like never before! I mailed my tax forms without even signing them! And forgot to mail the School Taxes due 10/16/08! I got caught unexpectly out of town - out of state, when people who come to work here were left in the lurch. I really have to get organized! And I forgot a dinner date on a friends birthday! I'm pretty bad! But I like doing things - like I have some new hobbies creating web pages and writing! I have a good knowledge of HTML markup and can create just about any static web page. I am also able to create forms and feedback scripts which execute on the server and can turn feedback into E-mails. I am starting to work on MySQL database applications-- such as an online store or membership application. Eventially, I will begin to use JavaScript to create dynamic AJAX web pages. I write poetry about my dogs and an autobiography. I think - I know - I want to publish. If I can't find an agent or a publisher at least I can put my material on the Internet! I haven't had any success trying to sell web pages for free (to gain word-of-mouth advertising.) I don't need the money-- Just for the fun of it! I read poems Monday evenings, at the Colony Restaurant's Poetry Night. First - several times in September, 2008 Then October 6th, 13th, 20th, and 27th. and possibly last in November, 2008. I will find other places to go and read my poems. Maybe I will find out how to get on the lecture circuit and get a business going that way. I plan to start going to the golf driving range in Kingston and getting more exercise so I can get my weight down and stop taking blood pressure medicine. I am thinking of throwing parties at my house and invite all of the neighbors to come and bring their pets to visit my dogs, play cards, listen to music and poetry. They can park across the road on our lot. I would serve cheese, crackers, wine, champaign, and some other food. I don't care if it costs a bit much. I don't have too many years left to enjoy it. I know my daughter would really like that too! Maybe I should convert the swimming pool to a flat bottom gallery where people can sit and play cards, etc. I might have private bridge games. I couldn't charge anything -- could ask for contributions to cover the cost of food, but no liquor of course. Would have to change the steps going down to the lower level. I would have to put in a pair of studs going up to the rafters and cut off the header going across above the steps so people would not hit their heads.

Willow Winds

Willow Winds Enterprise was my wife's business name. She operated an antique business at Winchell's Corners, Shokan. She called our home in Willow, "Willow Winds" There are a lot of white birch trees on our lot across the road, and catalpa and other trees and you can hear the winds blowing through the trees. We have an old farm house dating to about 1875 which Ruthe's father bought in four transactions in 1937. Had to buy them through third parties - because the local Dutch wouldn't sell to Jews. It use to have a wrap around porch - he took off half of it and added a room to shoot billards, called it the "mens room." Opened up the living room into the hallway-stairway, added a dry bar under the stairway - to serve liquor and put in pine covered walls and beamed ceilings replaced propane floor heaters with an oil boiler and added a big stone fireplace, ripped off the back entrance and built a 12 by 20 foot kitchen and a 12 by 12 foot screened-in stone patio, and added a two car garage to the carriage house. When I came there there were five dog runs out the back of the carriage house. I eliminated the dog runs, shored up the building, added insulation and wood interior. The dirt floor basement used to flood four feet deep without a sump pump. In the basement he built a concrete enclosure to protect a large freezer chest for his beef, and added a concrete base for a butcher table so he could cut up a side of beef into two inch thick steaks and take them outside to a stone fire place and grill and share them, entertaining large numbers of his extended family. After I retired we kept the apartment in New York City for five years till they evicted us because it was no longer our primary residence-- it was a rent stablized apartment-- We had moved to our summer and weekend home in Willow, NY. We added a 15' by 31' green room to contain our New York furniture. It was a good thing we were evicted since we were rarely there more than once or twice a month. I ran underground water lines to the cabin so it conld be winterized. When Ruthe got sick and could not get enough exercise We built an enclosed swimming pool so she could do water exercises. The pool house, 50' by 25' wide, 18' high - the pool was 12' by 30'. These helped keep her alive the better part of the last 10 years.

The Neighborhood

We have a great neighborhood here in Willow. The James Cox Art Gallery and Auction House is just around the corner on Route 212. And Arthur Vogal's Willow Auto Garage is there too. He restores ventage cars! The Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary is located here. They operate a charity for abused and neglected farm animals. The owners are themselves Vegan Vegetarians. And every year Edward Fesseden at the four corners has a great apple cider pressing party for all the neighbors. About the twenty-eighth of September! You just bring your own jugs! His cider mill and press date to 1875 and is driven by a two-cycle gasolene engine. He had another similar engine driving an ice cream maker. His started with 12 to 15 bushels of apples - had a half dozen left. There was plenty of regular picknicking food available. The party lasted from 2 PM to at least 9 PM! I brought home two gallons of apple cider. His family dates back to the 1860s. His wife made a family tree in tiles out back. Other neighbors participate in our volunteer fire department rescue squad.


I just can't believe that 47% of Americans want Republicans to control our democracy! They want to give more power and money to their rich and powerful friends! Which would surly destroy our democracy! No individual should be allowed to control more than 1000 times as great resources as the average person! Corporations are a fictitious "person" and should not have any greater power to vote or give money to political parties than a real person. They should also be required to recogize labor unions. Where corporations are 50% or more owned by other corporations they should loose the right to vote or give money to political parties. There are a lot of changes I would like to make. I don't expect to accomplish any of them in my lifetime. First, I believe there are two many levels of government. When our country was put together transportation was by horseback. People did not want to travel more than four or five hours to get somewhere. As a result states were divided into counties and townships, cities and villages. Now we have multiple levels of law makers, administrators, judges, and police. We need to get rid of this overburden of control and cost. Only the state should be able to pass laws and they should apply everywhere. Eliminate all local government. State and Federal law makers should be elected by proportional representation to stop the control of the two party system which is slow to respond. Finally, if children are used in performances as in the theater, on stage, television, or commercials the producers should be required by law to provide videos of their performances at cost to the parents for their personal use and any labor or other contracts which prevent this should be outlawed.

The End