It has been a stretch of interesting days. I’m not certain how my life always seems to amble along like a comedy, but it does most of the time. It could be that I am just silly 🙂
I ran up against a wall this week that I’ve not encountered ever I don’t think, since I began surfing the ‘net decades ago. I ran out of data allotment. Now, since I use my connection for work, this is a pressing issue, never mind the lack of YouTube, the inability to stream music from AmPrime, or restricting my movie selection. Suddenly, I was in a world of ‘no connection found’. That’s because I turned my router off when I got the nifty notice from Verizon stating I’d consumed my monthly allocation. EEEEEEEEEEK! Thankfully that occurred on a weekend when I wasn’t working, and my month rolled over soon. The park is supposed to provide free wi-fi, but since I’ve been here the log in page is basically a grumpy note indicating someone needs to pay their bill. The office states someone was downloading too many pirated files, but looking around the park I find that very difficult to believe. I don’t think most people here even HAVE computers, much less are out and about pirating Mr Probz latest offering, illegal software, or even porn. But who knows what lurks behind hurricane shuttered park models. Perhaps that purple golf cart with the flower power stickers truly carries a bootlegger of Bollywood tunes in disguise.
Being cut off from the internet was not easy. Yes, I could have paid the data toll booth worker another 15.00 for an extra GB. Seemed a bit much when work wasn’t involved. And so I spent the last week limping along only with work connection and a few E-mails to friends. Now that I am out of internet jail, I realize what an overwhelming amount of E-mail comes my way on a daily basis. Yikes. Add in texts and photos from family and friends. Think of the blogs one reads, the news delivered to the inbox, and it all adds up. Now, I’ve worked in IT for a very long time, and I still have no idea how data is actually measured. I don’t know if E-mail counts only if you read it, or once it is delivered. I did discover that when tunneled in via the VPN to the office,only the handshake and departure actually count for ‘data usage’, and the rest of it is a private pipe between my office and my laptop. So it isn’t work that is eating up my data. It’s my fun, my inquisitiveness, my love of music and my unending desire to read that is piling up the bits and bytes.
I hauled out my CD collection from one of the moving bins and started playing my CD’s. Certainly not cutting edge releases, but they were smile and groove inducing and all over the place when it comes to genre. Mounting the bluetooth base for my wireless speakers was easy-peasy with Command Strips. I love those things! Soon I had Tracy Chapman booming her way through the “Let It Rain” CD. Nice groove for unpacking. I re-discovered “Cocktails for Two”, “Jazz for a Summer Night”, and some self-published CD works from MP3.com, back when that was a big platform for unknown new artists to promote their works. These people aren’t to be found on YouTube these days. I was pretty new-agey before New Age was a mainstream musical term and so finding these old treasures is quite the delight. I still miss streaming the new stuff, but for now I’m hanging out with old aural friends and jamming. I even danced some, and the RV police were not dispatched 😉 It is quite heady to sit in the open darkness, watching the Big Dipper above your head, sipping an adult beverage and re-listen to the Cranberries, the Scorpions or electronic dance-trance from the 90’s with Barred Owls as a backdrop.
I’ve completed two books long in the snatch-and-grab reading queue, as well as starting and finishing two new fun novels (One here, by a WP blogger “Nine Black Lives”, quite good), and my first Johnny Shaw read “Plaster City”. Both gritty and interesting mystery tales, at opposite ends of the socio-economic spectrum.
One of the long-time-in-reading books was a difficult one for me, titled “Widow” and written in the 70’s. It is a true story, and I was only able to read it in bits before becoming emotionally overwhelmed, putting it down, only to pick it up again later. It is a good book, and I found a very spot-on passage addressing the emotional place that I find myself in currently. Lynn Caine writes: “I did not need a man for my own self-esteem any longer. And in a very strange way, this made me much less lonely. I no longer worried whether a man – or a woman – liked me. My concern was with how I liked them, how they affected me, what kind of people they were. I no longer sought approval. I discovered that I was happy enough alone, governing my own life. And I’ve modified that purposely. I am not “happy”. But I am “happy enough”. I am often lonely. I know what I am missing, but I can cope with life now. I find more pleasure in solitude. I am becoming a more serious woman…I seek delight, but my delights are different now.”
While I don’t seek approval, it is very nice to find someone who aptly describes how I feel. The difference in being single prior to marriage is that you have no idea what you are missing. When you have loved and been loved in a marriage, you do know. It makes the missing more bittersweet as well, because you understand that to find that again is highly unlikely. You can lower the bar I suppose, for the sake of companionship. I, however selfish it may be, find that there is too much involved in the way of compromise, acquiescence; too much giving to be done, in order to lower the bar at this stage of my life. I will either find someone who delights in me and all of my horrific flaws alongside my dreamy thoughts and attempted ideals, or I will simply continue seeking delights out in the world itself, alone and unencumbered. Now if I can only aptly convey this to my mother, all will be well 🙂
But I know no one reads my blog for the sappy gooey stuff that sometimes oozes from my fingertips unbidden. You come for the gaffes in the day of a life. And I have some doozies for ya 🙂
Lesson learned: Always, always, close a pocketknife when you put it away. Otherwise you will experience a day like mine, the day following when I should have put the knife away. I come rushing in from the lunch drive home to jump back into work and attempt to quickly make something to eat before my next conference call. In my rushing, bumbling way, I sweep said knife off of the counter and straight down in a bull’s eye for my fourth toe, where shockingly, it sticks straight up like the movies. I pull it out, figure the damage isn’t too bad, and rush my sandwich and beet juice cocktail over to my ‘office’ (the passenger seat of the RV). While adjusting my headset I look down to see blood oozing all over the carpet and quickly jump up to grab alcohol and a bandaid. And in my full-on graceful leg-over-console sprinting move, I manage to kick the beet juice cocktail alllll over the console, down the sloping sides, splashing the other leather captain’s chair and arc it beautifully into the well-maintained and unstained light blue carpet. Momentarily I am paralyzed in horror, and forget my foot is bleeding. Torn between the foot and the carpet, I lurch to the bathroom, quickly bandage my foot and grab the white vinegar on my way back. Oh, did I mention I’m on a business call during all of this? Half a roll of paper towels and 1/4 of the vinegar later, I am pleased to state there is no stain anywhere to be found as evidence of my lack of grace and foolhardiness, except here in writing. Perhaps I should backspace…
To maintain my standing in the Number One slot for RVTV entertainment, I continue to wrangle with my awning, much to the delight of Hollerin’ Man and 1st White Knight in Golf Cart. I added another element of adventure by having the kids put up my screen room yesterday while they were here for a barbecue. Due to the pending departure of HM and his wife, as well as the White Knight, I feel the intricacies of Awning Management might remain outside of my complete grasp and lend itself to damaging the RV, and I don’t fancy attempting it in high heels as I head out the door to work in the mornings. A screen room seems a cheap and easy alternative. Hah! While I bounced the baby on my hip and did both the hot dog grilling and the five year old’s supervision, my kids erected the screen room, on a completely windless evening. So windless that I toted a fan outside to stir the air and keep the mosquito flocks to a dull roar. I knew I’d need to stake it, but after kid wrangling, cooking and cleaning up, plus an emergency work log in lasting until after midnight, it seemed entirely prudent to wait until the following morning. The morning dawned hot and still lacking wind, so I had time to make my coffee, run the water heater, and attend to other morning business – or so I thought. RV bathrooms are rather claustrophobic, and one thing you do not wish to experience while in one is the sudden rocking of the RV and loud screeching noises. The do not level ratchets up depending on what you’re doing in there. Dashing down the hall of a multi-windowed RV while in a stage of semi-undress is less than private, particularly when two other people are approaching the RV simultaneously. I hit the steps (clothed) in time to start dashing through locks, cranks and knobs just prior to HM and White Knight arriving, at which time the cam lock seized. It is difficult to finagle a cam lock while holding on to the strap that keeps the RV awning from rolling up with you pressed inside of it like a human pancake. Finally HM was able to release the cam lock and I was given permission to let go of the strap, remembering to firmly anchor the metal eye-poking stick to the strap because it rolls way above my head right quickly and you aren’t allowed to let it snap too fast. Whew, another SCA (SheketCrisisAverted).
After thanking the gentlemen profusely, I returned to my previous business. It was not to be. There was knocking at the door. I’d not gotten around to staking the screen room yet as I mentioned, and it was asking to come inside. It’s like opening the door on a balloon. Up the shorts, out to the storage bins and a hammering was begun. This apparently also required a male overseer, as Hollering Man came over to supervise, chide my choice of stakes, and offer his steel hammer. The screen room was righted and guywired, and I was sweating my ass off by 10:30. I am pleased to report though, that despite gusts that rock the RV, my screen room is still firmly attached to the ground at this time.
I grew up here, and I don’t like the heat. Solar powered I am not. This capture was around 11:00 AM this morning. Currently we’re at 90 with a ‘feels like’ of 107 per the weather site, yet my thermometer reads 97 here. In April. The gusts are up to 15-20 mph at times. In the shade it really isn’t bad, particularly with the wind. But these temps make me languorous, an unmoving lump on the sofa between two fans, and it surely dampens any inclination to go rummage around in a cement room with a metal door that holds more of my stuff.
I know I promised wildlife photos, most are still waiting for editing on another computer, so it will be a while before I have those up. But here are a few, including some from the ‘inside’ of La Coquille – my ‘office’ and the tiny lantern I made with a tea light holder and some itty bitty teensy weensy LEDs that I fell in love with.
A newly hatched monarch was braving the winds today as I just happened to have my good camera out. Right time, right place 🙂
My wildflowers are blooming, happy in the their pots. I have one, lone, brave tomato, and the zinnias are about to explode into bloom. I am in anxious anticipation for their arrival.
Be well, be happy, and always laugh at yourself…because somewhere, someone else is laughing at you too!