Saturday, October 5, 2019

Birthday week

I turned 62 on the 30th.
It was a wonderful weekend with grands,
fudge brownie birthday cake
and my first real decision to wait for Social Security.

The grands left
and I to hustle to the food pantry.
We have been slammed lately, and I so cool goodies.

Then the hazard of three began to happen.

I got pulled over for going 62 in a 40 zone.
When the trooper got to my car I could not find my insurance.

That was number one.

Seven am the next morning,
 we were taking the puppy to get spade.
She got off the lead.
Running to traffic she turned when I screamed her name.
She ran back,
I leaded down to scoop her up
and.....as she went under my legs, I fell.

Number two.

We got home from 14 hours at  the hospital
and got an email
with the CCRs for our almost purchased land.
there were some pretty weird things in them.
If they were not fixed...
our week trip to find land would have been a waste.

Number three.

On the "good" side
The trooper took pity on me. I was the only one who stopped in  a line of seven cars.
Instead of a huge fine and taking my license.
He wrote me a pseudo ticket for 44 in a 40
which I have already paid.

The fall? I have a dislocated fracture of my elbow.
Very nasty mess.
Rebuild will be  on Tuesday.
Can you imagine if I had hit my head?
I am relearning how to write and type with my left hand.

The land?
Since we were the first people to buy to live in the development
(many spec home lots)
they took out what was crazy
and explained the rest- in writing.
We are happy again.

Here is hoping that the second week of my sixty second year goes better,
If not,
I will be applying for Social Security next weekend!

If you pray,
I could use all prayers for my surgeon on Tuesday!



Saturday, September 28, 2019

Downsizing begins

First thing to go through are our books.
After for teaching for 30 years and moving for 35 years, 
we have accumulated a huge collection of books.
Most have been read and reread. 
I cannot decide wether or not to keep them.
We both have Kindles.
Will that be our option for the next twenty years?

Weeding will begin in a week.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

I am learning- packing 3.0

Last week my bag was full of a down coat, clothes for a week, a rain coat and my hiking boots.
This week I am beginning my pack for Hawaii.
Here are the short cuts that have helped.


 How did I travel almost a million miles without these?
These are worth every penny!

 Old Navy sells off their flip flops at the end of the season. I bought six pair! If they return with me, great. If they don't, I have more and someone else will have some fun flip flops.
Same with my IKEA bags. Tiny to pack, carries everything!


Glad to finally find something that can help me sleep! I will never go with a neck pillow again.  Then lumbar pillow packs super flat and served me well in a yucky seat. I doubled it as a pillow in a questionable hotel.
Did you hear about the person who lost their phone in a river---for a year? 
Here was her case. I used it at the Jordan River. It makes the cut for Hawaii!










These two are becoming a staple. I only take a few sheets of each in snack baggies. Both have saved me after a long day on the road/flight.

Have you found anything new?

Yellowstone

Fall in Yellowstone.

We took a quick trip into Yellow stone. 
There were about 40 in this herd.
They decided to cross the road.

The first walk.


This is US.
Paint pots. 
Old Faithful in the dark.

Short but sweet. 
Yellowstone is about an hour from where we plan on building.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Neil

I wrote this four years ago. 
We still miss him
I will never forget.
Pentagon 9/11

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Sitting on a train in China

In 1991 my husband was sitting on a train in China.
His work took him there often.
He and his traveling companion were sitting in a car with two mid grade Chinese officers.
Before you think that is unusual, 
everyone in China is in the Army
until they are dismissed (usually around 60).
If you figure on one tenth of the population could travel in those years, and one tenth of the middle aged men were officers in the military. That makes about 60 million officers (Our entire military is 1.3mil)
Ok, you get the idea.

The conversation was fascinating enough for him to come home to me and relate it back. Let's start at the beginning.
China's symbol for itself is a box with a line through it
China is the center of the world.
China was still relatively poor at that point. They had limited their population and taken the best and brightest to their cities to educate them. Still, it was not unusual to see the majority of the population out in the fields harvesting rice or potatoes. 

There was a plan a foot to get to that center once again. 
They figured that they could not beat us militarily, but could economically. 

And so the discussion
How to beat the US economically.

They knew they could manipulate their own currency.
They also knew that they could make the US/Western companies, who wanted cheap labor and  pollute their land (instead of their own), give them everything they wanted to make a buck.
 They knew that they could depend on the grace of the US to educate many of their top people.They also had watched the droning of Japan with PacMan and Tetrus and knew they could do that other places. Placate the masses. 

Hummmm. And right there they began discussing China 2025. Did these two Americans think it would be possible to manipulate the US into believing China just wanted to grow and not take over?
Did they think this was possible?
Of course, our men told them, no way. 2025? That was SOOO far away. 

My husband left that all behind when he retired the first time.
But his traveling companion continued in the field
and worked in and around China for the next 20 years. 

Fast forward to 2016 election time. Our friend was sitting on our couch, stating that the US was no longer a leader in the world, but a follower. His think tank was full of proof. 
The Chinese had exploited their way through Africa and Western Asia- enslaving in many ways- by paying off oligarchs of every country. Human rights were being ignored by the "free world" because it was the cost of doing business. 
He was still in a bit of shock that the US had become so dependent on China to build some of the most sophisticated technology, but that was capitalism. Even more so  the Western world had signed a treaty that would give China ten more years to pollute even more so they could get their policy done. They had even purchased many corporate farms in the bread basket of our country.
He was explaining how that conversation-so many years ago- was now China policy. And China 2025 was a reality.
He was sad that our country would be much like England.- a power of the past. But we would be fine. China really doesn't want to be in charge of the low people. Just go with the flow.
Our friend had been "gloated to" and 2025 was a "go" since Hillary was a shoe in.
And then the election happened.

Saturday, September 7, 2019

What does it look like?

This morning I was wandering in my backyard.
Butterflies are plentiful right now
and the hibiscus are all blooming.

My sweep of the asparagus gave me a stem or two to enjoy.
Peppers are still producing. 

 The mint is enjoying the last rains
Even the caterpillars are trying to get in on the last of the carrot and dill tops.
The spinach and broccoli need to get into the ground
Soon!
And yet
I keep thinking,
What will it look like in 2040?

My daughter was discussing parking at the high school in six years. 

I blurted out that the e car would probably drop him off and then pick him up after to take him to his apprenticeship with the computer place he will be working at. She laughed. I remind her that she wears a computer on her arm and Alexa keeps her organized.

What will it look like when my grandchildren all "leave the nest"?
Two of the six grands plan on living in space full time.
One wants to be a ballerina (3 year olds...)
The oldest grand would like to be a geneticist.
Heck, I did not know what that was when I was 11!

2040? 
We are planning on robots/AI to be an intricate part of our household.  Who cares about privacy?
We will be on our way to our 90s and life will be pretty sweet.
 We will chat, Jetson style, with our "kids" daily. 
They will know our house will keep us safe- monitoring our bp, weight, and food consumption. Between our e car and no grocery shopping, we will have even more time to garden and woodwork. 
Our grands will visit us and wonder, even louder, why we bother. 
But the butterflies will be flying
and the mint will be blooming
and the asparagus will be just right for the grill.