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Archive for the ‘Whatever’ Category

Twisty, Twisty Ankle

This is how I planned the Saturday. There were two good garage sales. One I could walk to and encompassed the immediate neighborhood. The second I’d drive to with my Mom. She’s been wanting to go to garage sales, but getting in and out of the car constantly is not an option. The second place was at an apartment complex. She just needed to get out once and I’ll wheel her around in the wheelchair. After that, we’d go to the library.

This is how my Saturday went. Me on the couch with my foot up.

See, on Friday, I’d gone out the front door to get the mail. The sidewalk makes a sharp bend to the driveway. Along the driveway the ground is a good inch or two lower. My left foot hit the edge of the driveway and slipped. I twisted. I turned. I fell. Bam. Ouch. Major ouch. I must have lain on the cement for a good two-three minutes holding my ankle and being mad at myself. Why hadn’t I watched out where I was going? I can’t even remember what we got for mail, but it wasn’t worth all this. It wasn’t worth not paying attention.

I hobbled in. Mama wants to know what we got for mail. I twisted my ankle, I said. And It hurts. Mama still goes on about the mail. I have to shout what happened and then she goes into supermom mode except without the actual tending to me part because she can’t move far fast. She does try and made dinner and I’m there, laying on the couch, listening to her and she sounds just about to faint and drop on the spot so I know that I can’t be laying around with my foot for long. And I don’t. Next day I teeter-totter about doing the meal things and that’s okay. The foot’s swollen and bruised, but not so much the latter, because I’m using Mama’s wonder medicine, something with annika, a plant I think. It really gets the bruising down.

And there’s my Saturday. And pretty much my whole week. I’ll be paying a lot more attention when I got out that door.

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Comic Book Day 2017

I had big plans for May 6. Comic Book Day. By great luck there was also a community garage sale that morning. I bought nothing. The only books I would have bought were a bit grimy. They didn’t have anything else on my shopping list because, yes, I have a shopping list for when I go. I need a secure, plastic box for notebooks and I’m always searching for artificial flowers because they’re easier to maintain then real ones. Also, I can’t accidentally kill them.

But it was the thrill of the comic books that got me up that morning. In the preceding days I’d gone on-line to check out the comic book stores, to check on changes. One is gone. To tell the truth I’d never once found it and I tried, driving up and down a stretch of road several times searching for the address. Nothing. Just when I get an idea of where it might be, it’s gone out of business.

I thought that this year I would check out two new places. I like to get a feel for the store. No comic book shop is like another. Some aren’t even comic book stores, they just sell them among their DVDs, vinyl, CD’s and books. Then other places are comic book heavens with walls and racks and boxes of comic books. There are super hero posters and cardboard figures and toys and all the wonderful comic book and super hero related ‘stuff’. I’d discovered one of the latter last year and this year found another one. I nearly ran over Loki as I entered the parking lot, but not because I was going fast, he walked in the way and he was standing smack in the middle of the driveway.

It was hard to decide which free comic book to get. You can get only three. I don’t like the place where you can’t look at the book, but point and they’ll give it to you. I ended up with a listing of upcoming stories that way. I like to look at them and even then I left with a horror story where a little girl is killing people. Don’t like those kind. The ones I liked best was the Star Trek Next Generation one set in the Mirror universe. Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a good one, and I had to get Sponge Bob. I managed to get Bongo (with the Simpsons) too.  Plus I got a free hot dog and Cheeze Doodles. The latter are not to good to eat when your reading comic books.

On my way out of the parking lot, I nearly ran over Loki again. Good thing he wasn’t real. Next year I hope I remember to give everyone a heads up via the blog so they can head out and get their own free comic books.

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Solar Eclipse

On the 21st of August, we, here in South Carolina, will experience a total solar eclipse. Cool. The city thinks so too and they’re expecting a million people to converge on Columbia. On the 21st of April they did what they called a dry run for the event. I had a little trouble wrapping my mind around that. Where are they getting the million people was one thought that went through my head. It turned out they meant a dry run to see where the sun will be at what time and scouting for the best viewing spots. Turns out the sun will be covered the longest someplace south of the city. Where I live it’ll be covered for two minutes and ten seconds, that’s twenty-seven seconds less. I can live with that.

My Mom asked what if it’s at night. I said that it wouldn’t be a solar eclipse then. I don’t think she was paying attention to what she was saying.

The newspaper already listed several viewing places. I’d told someone I’ll them out making eclipse viewing instruments. They’re not glasses and you don’t look at the sun. Instead you make a hole in some cardboard and look down at the circle of light going through the hole. It may sound weird, but it works. I’ve tried it before.

Back in the 80’s or early 90’s, there was a solar eclipse in Houston. I was at work when it happened and sat out on the step with my contraption and watched the circle of light. Sure enough, as soon as the moon began to slide over the sun you could see it.  More and more sun was covered and it got darker and the birds stopped peeping. It was weird. And cool.

I’ve seen a lunar eclipse too, also in Houston. There was a quasi pool party I attended and we sat there, everyone in the complex and gazed upward as the Earth’s shadow covered the moon. Someone took a picture. Using the flash. I still wonder how that turned out.

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Serendipitous Moment

I had a serendipitous moment when I went to take photos in downtown Columbia, in the Washington Street area. This used to be the black commercial area that began sometime in the 1920’s with restaurants, a hotel, and a theater and more. At the moment there are only two structures left and one will be torn down for an apartment building. I wanted to take a picture of it before they tore it down.

As I inspected the second building, a former bank, I bumped into an elderly man. Wouldn’t you know, he used to eat here, when there was a restaurant. He said it was the best food ever. Then he pointed out where other buildings used to be like the two funeral homes that stood across the street from each other. A movie theater used to be nearby where there’s a parking lot now. And the building that’s to be torn down used to be a hardware store.

Wow. How lucky I was to be standing right there when he came by. How lucky I was that we started talking. That’s one thing I like about taking pictures. It invites people to come and talk to you and tell you what they remember.

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Easter Thoughts

I spent a small Easter with my mother. My sister has work and my nephew has work and the rest of our family is in Europe. Mama doesn’t do well in company much nowadays and since I’m an introvert, small is good.

I bought some chocolate for Mama. I didn’t get much and told Mama I didn’t get any before hand. Candy is too expensive. I wait for the after specials, when candy is half price. Mama likes Cadbury. The price of the large chocolate egg packs  have gone up, like, about a dollar since last year.

Thinking about Easter, I remember back when I was a kid. We’d drive north from Heidelberg to my grandparents house. We’d be bundled up because it was usually cold. Once there was snow on the ground. If it was a late Easter, it’d be warm, spring dress weather. Mama always made us new Easter dresses for the occasion. When we were both much younger, they were matching outfits. Later not anymore.

My uncle liked to put out eggs, candy and real, in the backyard. If it was too cold or if it rained, he hid them inside. One Easter he told me to look behind the couch. There I found a toy, plastic train. He’d bought it for me long ago and misplaced it for years. Even though I was a little old for it, I found use for the train.

Come Easter Sunday, we’d walk downtown to the church, St. Clement, the bells ringing throughout the village. I can’t remember what we had to eat. Whatever it was it had to be good and throughout the day we’d be eating candy.

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My sister is going camping at Palo Duro Canyon in the Texas panhandle. She’s always wanted to go and met some people who were also interested. One of them organized a time and rented one of the rustic (no ensuite) cabins. The closer they get to the departure time the more anxious my sister is getting. No one’s talking about the trip. No one’s saying what she needs to bring. When are they meeting? Should she bring food? Should she bring up the topic? She’s not the one planning it so that person might not like questions.

She’s decided to bring some food, stash it away in the truck (they’ll be using her vehicle) and if its needed she can pull it out. Like she always carries a can of Dinty Stew and a package of biscuit mix with her. Another friend has loaned her a single burner and a lantern and other things for the trip. Turns out I have most of the camping stuff.

But she’s still anxious even if she’d decided that all she wants is just get there and come back in one piece. When we get together for trips again we can plan them like we want. Both of us are list makers and I plan routes to maximize viewing of places of interest. I probably over do but half the fun for me is the planning. I suppose it’s the same for my sister.

I had a friend who wanted to go on trips with me. She saw me as the world traveler. I hate to admit it, but my first thought was: no way. She likes cities. I like countryside. She likes churches and museums and to spend days, hours, studying them. We both like gardens, but her more than I. And I like walking, hiking, nature. I don’t think we’d make good traveling companions.

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I am not a telephone person, but it’s an instrument one just can’t avoid. So it was with trepidation that I called up my insurance company, and got caught up in the web of hell. Option 1. Option 2. None matched what I really wanted to know – get an address, a physical address. It wasn’t on the website, that was my first port of call in avoiding the telephone. I didn’t want billing. I didn’t want information for a provider. I wasn’t a provider. Will pushing zero help? No. Second by second I got tangled deeper in the web.

Still, it wasn’t as bad as when I worked at the school. Being the librarian I was in charge of the bell system mainly because the computer was in a back closet in the library. Taking up valuable space I might add. Whenever it was down I had to call the company – Sprint, Embarq, Century Link, the name changed almost yearly.

Residence or business. Telephone or internet. My finger pushed whatever button seemed best. What number was I calling about? None, really. What type of phone. What type of internet. Nothing matched what I wanted. Wherever I went, it’d be wrong.

I stabbed at the zero button. Pick up, pick up, I’d pray. Someone human, please pick up. Ten minutes later, if I haven’t been disconnected or put on hold, I’ll be speaking to a person who hasn’t a clue about the bell or the TekNet system. They’ll redirect me and I’ll be back in the phone web and banging my head against the wall while students or teachers want attention.

So glad I’m not doing that anymore.

And yes, I did get my address and it wasn’t so bad afterall.

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