Wednesday, April 19, 2017

April 19: Jetting Across the Country...

I write this from a hotel room in Boston. Spring hasn't arrived here yet. There are no leaves on trees. And, of course, it is raining.

I am here with Kylie, who managed to score a full ride scholarship at MIT. Kylie looks awfully young to move cross country to this cold New England town. Yet, she is excited and loves the brick buildings and the old architecture.

I sold out another set of values and used "Uber" for the first time. Kylie and I walked past the traditional taxis to the little place that they let the Internet pickups occur. The driver was nice. Yet, I am uncomfortable with the unregulated aspect of this new "share" economy venture.

While driving to the motel, we went past Fenway Park. The lights were blazing. If you love baseball, seeing a game in Fenway Park must be on your bucket list. Oh, I would love to see a game there. I wish the Twins were in town.

The motel is in a nice little neighborhood. The place isn't all that ostentatious, yet there are small restaurants on every block. Quite a variety of food. Kylie and I chose a Sushi place and had a nice meal while watching five Japanese Sushi chefs make their wares. Going small must be back in vogue, as there are more solo, artisan restaurants than there are chains---at least in this neighborhood. The exception being Dunkin Donuts---they are everywhere. We got a couple donuts for dessert.

We had a great pizza in Dulles airport on the way here. Kylie called it the "best pizza" she has ever had. Kudos to Dulles International for providing great chow to travelers. Even if the airport is named after the Imperialistic Dulles brothers who overturned popularly elected regimes in Iran and Guatemala----an error that we have still to recover from.

Tomorrow a visit to MIT and perhaps a walk across the bridge that divides MIT and Harvard.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

April 9: Staying Home

Steps: 12,505

Sometimes you just want to stay home. Which is what I did. I've been trying to find a housekeeper. I also splurged and have found a Handyman (spouse of the Housekeeper) to help me with tasks around here that I just don't have time to deal with. Like going to the dump.

I work so much, I hate spending my days off cleaning and all those other necessary, but time consuming tasks. When you live in a Mud Hut, on a Dirt Road, things get a bit dusty.

So my Handyman started Weed Whacking for me today. Tomorrow he will take a load of some of the junk we've accumulated here for the past ten years, to the dump.

And I've gone through 3 cords of wood this winter. As George sang: "It's been a long, cold, lonely winter". It has been. I've only gone through 1 1/2 cords on average in the previous nine winters that I've lived here. Tomorrow I will have a couple more cords of oak delivered.

It was a day of Puttering. Cleaning up the yard. Taking Angel for a walk.

A new goal: A three mile walk with Angel most mornings.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

April 8: The Past Two Months...

Steps: 15,478

Book: "Wolfer" by Carter Niemeyer.

Well those two months went fast. So what happened? I got inundated with work and I just couldn't justify taking time to pluck out words here when I couldn't get my work done. Hopefully, I will have a bit more time to get back to the journal as I changed my work arrangement. I now will spend two days in the field, followed by a day of charting, then two days in the field again. So far this is working; my Supervisors like it that I am getting my charting done on time. And I seem to have more time for other pursuits. Time management, I guess.

The photo above is from Sedona, Arizona with me standing in front of the Grandfather Tree. A wise tree, I'm told. A Healer Guru told me and my traveling partner about it. We checked it out. The Healer Guru is the normal kind of Trustfunder, expensive, Semi-Charlatan--selling healing techniques designed to pretty much heal all of life's maladies (at $1,500 a piece to have the honor to sit in a room and listen to the guy talk about Chakras and Synchronicity). Except the poor guy was in pain from a bad back. I guess he couldn't heal himself.

My Guru (Jesus) was a homeless, impoverished radical. I don't know why Enlightenment costs so much in the US. Maybe because all these New Age Gurus are Charlatans?

So what's happened to me in the last two months?

On February 13 to February 20, I took a vacation to Sedona, Arizona.
On February 27, I had to bury my favorite dog. (more on that later)
On March 7, I turned 56.
On March 14, Kylie was accepted into MIT. (Full scholarship: room, board, tuition, books---$64,000 deal)
Amongst other stuff. (Very personal).

I also accepted a writing assignment for the CNR I am excited about.

I have been miserably unhappy just working 7 days a week. I haven't had time to walk. No time to train. Barely anytime to read.

I also think having Trump as a President has affected me. I am worried about all our measly gains under Obama---especially Obamacare--- being extinguished. I also worry that the Hamster Headed Narcissist will do something dumb. Like bomb the Russians and Assad.

Anyway, I am back. Hello. Let's get started.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

February 7 and 8:


Feb 7: 6,171
Feb 8: 5,968

I am stuck in a pattern where I have too much work to do. Too much travel to do. Too much rain. And never enough time just to take a walk. The dogs are neglected. I am neglected. I don't like this.

Monday, February 6, 2017

February 6: Super 8

Mount Shasta over the bed in my room at the Super 8.
Steps: 6,814

Activity: None

Most Monday nights you can find me at a Super 8 motel room in Corning. Usually room 104. I started staying here because I have an early morning meeting every Tuesday and I found that I got overly tired when I got up early to drive the hour and fifteen minute it takes to get to Corning. Too much time in the car. It's how I take care of myself.

When you have Meniere's Disease, and you want to avoid a vertigo attack, you have to pay attention to what I call the Three S's: Sleep, Stress, Salt. Get sleep. Reduce stress. Reduce Salt. It seems to be working because I have gone a year now with just one vertigo attack: May 28, 2016 was my last one--and it was very mild. The last one before that was on January 28, 2016. Prior to that one, I would have them nearly weekly---and I strongly considered going on disability.

Today was a day where I felt like I could have a vertigo attack. I felt overly tired all day long----and it has been a long, long time since I last felt that way. So I took it easy, caught up on my charting, didn't see any clients, and drove to Corning to the motel in order to take a nap.

Now Corning isn't Napa Valley. There is an olive tasting room here (actually a couple of them)---and the town boasts an olive oil factory. I am ashamed to say that I've never tried any of the local olives. I need to remedy that. I will write a review. Olives generally are not a part of a low salt diet---but just like a diabetic has to live a little and not be totally pietistic, the same goes for a low salt diet.

I have lots to do over the next work week. Next week I will be on vacation.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

February 5: Super Bowl and the Coyote Deity

Coyote as deity.

Steps: 9,508

Activity: Hike with dogs; clean up of yard.

The rain stopped just long enough for the dogs and I to steal a walk. Afterwards, some yard work and clean up---before I settled in to watch the Super Bowl. I wasn't going to because Tom Brady and the head coach of the Patriots are Trump supporters. But in the end, the TV won out and I had a better than expected time watching the game. The commercials were fun. Lady GaGa, despite my hatred of dance music and canned lip sync music, was entertaining. And even a little bit clandestinely political as she sang "America the Beautiful" followed by Woody Guthrie's "This Land Is Your Land". Protestors have been singing Woody Guthrie's classic at all the marches and rallies. LG gave those folks a nod.

And so a weekend closes where I didn't leave the property. It is hard to get in the car on my days off, spending so much time in the car during the week. This will be an intense week before I take some vacation time and travel to Sedona to meet L. It is supposed to rain until Friday. Rain the whole week with the worst of it coming in the next two days.

And from Dan Flores' Coyote America he asserts that the oldest deity in the world which actually has in tact stories connected to said Deity is the Coyote. Some of the American Coyote stories that so infuse Native American myth are 10,000 years old. The Coyote was a deity for them. Flores asserts that the Native Americans lifted the coyote to deity status due to its ability to survive a rapidly warming world after the close of the Ice Age. As the Natives killed off the mega fauna of the time (along with climate change) Flores states that they looked to, and admired, the coyote's ability to survive.

So roll over Jehovah, Yahweh, Shiva, Krishna, and all the other deities. The oldest god is Coyote  with an oral tradition attached to the clever canine that extends back to the end of the last Ice Age.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

February 1 to 4: Rain and More Rain.


February 1: 10,025
February 2:  6,700
February 3:  7,939
February 4:  3,342

Activity: Almost none.

Book: Coyote America

We are in February, in the midst of yet another rain storm, and all I do is work. The poor dogs haven't had a walk in days. On top of all of that, I managed to burn my arm pretty badly on the wood stove and I have "Dry Socket" from a tooth that was pulled.

Donald Trump is in a frenzy to try and undue almost everything decent that has been accomplished over the last 8 years.

And so today, Saturday, I haven't done a darned thing but look at old You Tube videos of Charles Bowden. Bowden was an amazing story teller who covered both nature and the horrible situation on the border of Mexico. He passed away a couple years ago and we lost an original voice of reason.

The only good news to report is that the squirrel in the photo finally found the squirrel feeder I set up for him. This squirrel has been raiding my bird feeder for years. He/She loves sunflower seeds. So I set up a feeder for him/her outside the fence so that he/she doesn't have to run the gauntlet of dogs anymore. I hope he grows fat and happy. Now I can watch a bird feeder from my desk and also the squirrel feeder.

At the bird feeder there has been a pair of Western Orioles. I've never seen them at the feeder before so it is nice to add a new bird to my "life list". The feeders are picking up; the lesser Goldfinches are back from wherever they ran off to when I ran out of thistle a month ago. Various other birds are back too: towhees, titmouse, nuthatches, and the ever present house finches.