This Week Chez Nous

Hello everyone! I hope you’ve been having a good week? The past couple of days haven’t been so great at our house, what with a pain in the arm as well as severe pain in the wallet and chaos in the office. Hopefully we’ll recover; my arm injected with the Covid booster (Moderna) on Monday, is already improved, but it was very sore yesterday. I felt light headed, listless, and had several long naps; hopefully the effects have worn off and I can resume normal life now.

I wasn’t hearing the latest news, but Bob was telling me that the Premier of Quebec just announced there will be a tax levied on residents who have declined to be immunized, since these folks are giving half the cases straining provincial hospitals now. “Desperate times call for desperate measures,” I guess?

I cooked dinner for the residents at the Villa on Sunday, inviting two couples to join us and the residents. (For those of you who know folks here, they were Wendel & Heather and their four sons — Heather brought dessert & corn — and Ben & Lucille.) Usually when families are invited for Sunday dinner at the Villa, they bring some part of the meal, which is very helpful for the cook!

Monday we up-heaved the office some when I took my PC to the computer doctor in Outlook before going for my booster shot. Remember the old expression, “slow as molasses in January”? I’d turn it on and wait and wait! So it needs an upgrade, and the repair man is also fixing a few programs that don’t work. It will be great to have my mail G-mail account accessible again, but I may probably cry when I get his bill. I’m still whimpering over yesterday’s shell-out.

Yesterday, while I was taking life easy at home, Bob went to the city. Among other things, he got a replacement for the key I lost last week. Beware, everyone. These high-tech keys may be small things, but a replacement costs plenty — in the neighbourhood of $700 CDN!

Worth their weight in gold?

When he got home from the city a package had come in the mail: a mounting bracket for his monitor. Now he can adjust the height. However, to install this, he had to empty and remove a shelving unit that sat along the back of his desk, which means the office is in chaos this morning. (One used shelving unit for sale. What offers?) Chaos can actually be good in the long run, seeing how things never used can so easily get stored away and become part of the decor until you have to move them for some reason.

Our “severe cold spell” is past and we’re into a “severe” mild spell now, though I doubt the weatherman would ever call it that. The temp went above freezing yesterday; it’s -4 now at 10 am; the ice has melted off our windows. Out cats are acting rather squirrelly and are eager to go outside. Stepping outside now, it feels like spring — but we’re not deceived 🙂

Small Delights

Good morning to you all. The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is the word FUMBLE. Well, I fumbled around for awhile this morning in the internet world, but have finally got RESULTS!

I have a web filter on my PC. At some point about three months back it decided it had some issues with G-MAIL. For the most part the issues were resolved without open conflict, but right about that time I changed the password on my main G-mail account. This threw the elves who are supposed to forward my main G-mail into confusion — a confusion I haven’t been able to sort out ever since. When I tried FIX ACCOUNT, I get a prompt saying “We cannot connect to your server.”

Thankfully I have a laptop that accepted the new password and got on with mail delivery, but not my PC. I got a “How to fix this” instruction from my web-filter company, but got nowhere. I still get mail in my second G-mail account — reserved for certain duties — but nothing in the main one. Why, oh why?? So I’ve been using my laptop almost exclusively for the past few months, since everything there works as it should.

Now I will admit how technically dim I am: Only this morning I messed around in Google and found out how to access my main G-mail account online. Delightful! (Yeah, I shoulda known this long ago. 😉 ) Anyway, I read the mail in my main G-mail IN-BOX right here on my PC. Tra-la-la!

I notice Word Press has changed some things again — but at least I’ve re-discovered how to do colourful text. 😉 I’ve been so neglectful of my blog this past while that I’ve decided that today I’m going to post a number of haiku, so I’ll start with this one — a senryu, really:

 techno-victory
she finally accesses
her message center

SMALL DEBTS

I owe — and I must pay! The Government of Canada has sent me two letters now (which would normally cost about $1.60 in stamps) to tell me that they’ve overpaid me $1.45 in OAP benefits and I must pay it back by cheque or postal money order or they will deduct the entire sum from my next month’s pension cheque. It comforts me to know that our government is consistently bureaucratic — if that’s the word for statistical fumbles.

Now a quick note about our weather: It’s COLD here! We’ve had a really nice spell this week. I think yesterday the temp was about -4 C first thing in the morning. Unseasonably mild for the middle of December. However, the air had a damp feel to it and the north wind was raw, so we knew change was coming. This morning it was -15. I think the temp is to be -25 on Christmas Day. Here’s another haiku on the matter:

snow angels
their childhood frozen
for a day

And Dec 25th is only — GASP! — ten days from today. In the city yesterday we picked up a nice gift for someone on our list In spite of all the determination to do better, resolutions we made in Christmases past, we still tend to leave gift buying for the last few weeks. 😦

Have a great day everyone!

Book:Seniors and High-Tech

One day my husband brought home a book he thought I’d enjoy — and it did give me many chuckles, especially as I remembered our own days of learning how to operate this new-fangled device. If you’re young and tech-savvy you can read it and sympathize with computer sales & support people who must patiently explain what a byte is, how to control a mouse, or how far you should back up when your computer gives the order.

My Senior Moments Have Gone High-Tech
© 2016 by Karen O’Conner,
published by Harvest House Publishers in Eugene Oregon

My Senior Moments Have Gone High-Tech by [Karen O'Connor]

Consists mainly of anecdotes about golden oldies who take up using a computer in their senior years, these amusing tidbits have been gathered from learners, teachers, and fixers. As well as humor, the writer offers hope for those who feel their offspring are tossing them into the sea of technology without a life jacket.

Like the woman who set her mouse on the floor, thinking it should work like her sewing machine foot pedal. Or the irate fellow who ordered tech support to come out and see why his printer wasn’t working. The company rep dutifully showed up, checking things out, and asked how long the printer had been unplugged.

This reminds me of my first attempt at using our computer. Bob had purchased one three weeks previously, so he and our daughter (who worked at a computer store) were babbling in this strange language. Which made me all the more determined not to touch the thing. However, we’d been on a Family Reunion trip to Boston and I wanted to write up a long letter to his mother plus several penpals. Rather than hand-write all those pages, I typed it into the computer.

Starting with “Dear Mom, We had this great trip to Massachusetts…” I went on for eight pages giving her all the details. Then I hit PRINT. Nothing happened. I hit it again. Nothing happened. After the third try I called our daughter at work. She asked, “Are you sure it’s plugged in?”

I checked. It wasn’t. I plugged it in. Out came the eight pages. Then another eight. I couldn’t stop the thing! I unplugged it again, then plugged it back in. Out came another eight. I’m thankful my two penpals didn’t seem to mind an eight-page letter that started with “Dear Mom,” accompanied by a handwritten note of explanation on top. And when hubby got home, he showed me how to cancel a PRINT order. 🙂

My husband is talking now of updating our cell phones. Gulp! I still mourn the obsolescence of my old cell phone. It worked so well; to answer a call, you just flipped open the lid.

Anyway, I think this book would be a great Christmas gift for the senior on your list.

A Slap of Diverse Weather

The Ragtag Daily Prompt for today is DIVERSITY

Which we have today. After a couple of weeks of mild Indian summer warmth with temps around 10-14 C (50-55 F, give or take) a diverse weather system arrived in the night and fine snow began sifting down on us. The temp today has hovered below 0C or 32F, so a lot of the precipitation has liquefied. But new snow started this afternoon and now we’ve a fluffy white blanket.

Quite diverse from the balmy day yesterday. I was refilling my shallow basin of water for the sparrows that I have in front of our living room window and they took great delight in splashing in it. I probably won’t need to set water out for the birds for a good long while. Mind you, we really welcome this snow. It’s been so dry here for so long.

Two days ago I listened to a webinar about Scrivener writing programme and found it very interesting. It’s one huge organizational writing “notebook” package plus, storing your manuscript broken into scenes, all your reference material, imports and exports files, compiles your work as an e-book, etc. I see it comes complete with various “how to” tutorials. My husband is definitely interested in giving it a whirl. Has anyone else out there tried it and did you like it?

Exploring Yesteryear

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is SHADOWY EXPLORATIONS.

Well, as a response I’m going to take you all back to the distant shadows of the past and explore life in the 50s and 60s. I’m also going to give the new BlockEd its first Make-a-list trial. Confession: I’ve taken some else’s list and added.

How many of these can you remember?

  1. Candy cigarettes
  2. Cafes with table-side juke boxes
  3. Home milk delivery in glass bottles
  4. Party lines on the telephone
  5. TV stations going off the air at midnight
  6. TV test patterns – circles and an Indian head
  7. Peashooters
  8. Howdy Doody
  9. Brownie cameras
  10. Pleated plaid skirts
  11. Metal ice trays with lever
  12. Blue flashbulb
  13. Cork popguns
  14. Studebakers
  15. Wash tub wringers
  16. “There are eight million stories in the Naked City.
    This has been one of them.”
  17. Almost all men wearing hats
  18. Officers Tweedie & Muldoon
  19. Pocket watches and men’s wallets on chains
  20. Jars of Striped Peanut butter & jam
  21. Roller skates
  22. When head-rests and seat-belts were unheard of
  23. Hood ornaments on cars
  24. The Big Bopper
  25. Li’l Abner
  26. George Burns and Gracie Allen
  27. Rin Tin Tin
  28. Ice boxes
  29. Bread Boxes
  30. Kelvinator fridges
  31. Calling between midnight and 8am to save money
  32. “Hey, Mr Wilson!”
  33. Garter Belts
  34. Chubby Checker’s new dance
  35. Massey Harris tractors
  36. Galvanized steel bath tubs, with the same bathwater for all

Hope you’ve enjoyed these explorations into the shadowy past.

The Moment Has Come!

My destiny is forever altared — Whoops! I mean altered. (My destiny was altar-ed 50 years ago, but I’ve already posted about that. 🙂 )

No, this is all about an e-mail I received this morning from Word Press informing me that the new Block editor is now the default on my blog. This is your notice that you’re about to be inundated with posts from me as I practice this new system. (Oh, where is that “Justify” now?)

New and Improved… Easy to Use
I see it everywhere!
For me these words are welcome as
a bees’ nest in my hair.
I used to turn dials ON or OFF;
now I fiddle and fiddle
to start and stop appliances —
and timers are a riddle.
To keep Word Press-ers “on the edge”
and blogging round the clock
with utmost versatility,
we fogies must now BLOCK!