9-21-2016 Pecan Cookie Day!

Well, we had a bit of rain. This morning Willow checked the spring and cistern- yup a couple of inches. That’s an improvement. Not enough to turn the pump on again, but when I passed the fire station today, the fire risk dial was on moderate, not high, so that’s better. We are SO looking forward to being able to bathe, and flush, and do laundry, and not have to go out for water!
The color is coming up in the trees. I am not expecting much this year because of the drought. The garden is yellow and dry. It’s more frustrating when we think about other areas where there’s flooding. Is it ever spread out evenly? Tuesday I had an acupuncture appointment and was so grotty I tried washing my hair using the basin I use to sponge bathe. Didn’t work so well. Back to washing the brush daily and brushing 100 strokes, which I know will keep your hair clean. (I’ve done it- went six months without a shampoo and looked great, but when I stopped washing the brush daily, I had to go back to shampooing.)  I’m just not sure that it can catch up once your hair is dirty.

Last Saturday I went to the Eastern Mass Pagan Pride Day in Haverhill. They don’t have enough volunteers and aren’t doing so well organizationally. We had a hard time confirming that we were selling (should have checked the pay-pal earlier).
Willow had agreed to babysit for Avi, so Kat and I went alone. This will be Kat’s last PPD, she seems to now be allergic to incense as well as sage- had breathing problems twice.
I was careful not to do anything that could be seen as exertion. Jeanne, bless her, met us there and helped set up the tent and tables and goods, then came back at four and helped us break down. Heaven knows what shape I’d have been in if she hadn’t helped! I only walked as far as the rest room, so I didn’t even get a chance to push CTCW, or talk to friends- except for the ones who came over to us. (Ray H brought his kids over to meet me. I don’t think they were impressed.) There was a gentleman selling local honey in the castle I saw on the trip to the necessary, and Kat went in and bought a bottle for me, so I got a chance to get something. It’s got a bit more dandelion in than most I’ve tried before and tastes like it will help heal.
We didn’t do our usual stop on the way home for a meal, because I was trying to get home before dark. This was my first time driving since July. And on the way the dashboard went dead. No speedometer, nothing. I figured I’d go whatever the other cars were doing, but on the way out, when it still didn’t work, I wondered “When did Willow last fill the tank?” Hmmm. OK, easy fix, just get gas at the first station. I was a bit nervous because the GPS took us right onto the highway and I didn’t find one until Milford. It took thirteen gallons of fifteen, so I’d have made it home, but still, I prefer having that gage.
Kat had suggested hitting the reset button (which reset’s the trip meter), but I’d been thinking of banging on the dashboard, so I couldn’t really fault her suggestion. I figured it was probably a blown fuse. The next day when Willow took it out she DID try “percussive maintenance”, and it came back on. So the diagnosis is loose wire- oh joy. That means it can happen any time.

Unsurprisingly, by the time I got home my back was stiff as a board and I took a couple days to recover. I would really like the Bell’s Palsy to go away now, but I guess my body is doing two things at once, so it’s taking longer than it did for Kat. The acupuncturist says my tongue looks better. I would very much like my face to look better- I think it makes me look cross all the time. Karen Holland dropped by- she had it once and thinks chiropractic adjustments helped her recover more quickly. Two of the few people I spoke to at PPD have had Lyme or Bell’s or had a treatment they recommended. I wore both contacts for the first time in a while, and the right one hurt- I wonder if it’s because I hadn’t worn it (these are still the “orthopedic” lenses designed to push the eyes back into shape), or if there’s something like a small crack in it?
The girls did errands on Sunday- went to the dump and picked up prescriptions at Walmart. Monday they went out with the Laundry, and did the grocery shopping and the Library. Steve came up to visit on Sunday. I made “glop” (tuna, cheese and rice casserole). I am still not able to open my mouth wide, nor chew much, so I prefer soft foods. Luckily, Steve doesn’t get much “family style” food, so it’s fine with him.  He had an adventure this week- he got sideswiped in traffic. One hopes his insurance will fix the dent in the side of his car- the other guy just drove off, and he can’t identify him. That sounds scary!  queen-of-wands-twistedHe brought me a couple of tarot decks he’d duplicated  by mistake: Tarot Del Dulce Crepusculo, sort of an artsy one, and Twisted Tales Tarot, where each card references some old horror movies and comics. It ws fun trying to spot the reference- Chucky was in the three of cups, and the queen of wands was the medusa from Clash of the Titans. I don’t think I could read with either of them.

It’s about a month since my hospital stay, so I went out and collected the three months of bank statements and tried the IRS. Sadly, the days of walk-in help are gone. A sign on the door said you need an appointment and gave a number. A very nice security guard brought me out a chair so I could wait for them on hold. (Apparently you can’t bring a phone into the IRS, you could take pictures with it.) 15-20 minutes later I talked to another very nice man who, while he could get me an appointment to get a transcript tomorrow, couldn’t get me an appointment since I don’t have a transcript, not having filed. The social worker at the hospital told me that they had ways to file for last year without catching up, but this guy had never heard of it. And apparently he can’t give me an appointment unless I can tell him which of the specific things he has listed I want to do. Please go back to the website. I’d tried the website (which didn’t, I pointed out, tell me that I’d need an appointment. Sure it does, he says, it’s comes up when you put in your zip code so they can tell you where to go. Right, since I knew where our local office was, I didn’t use that.) already, and it’s really hard to navigate. After I’d given up on IRS.gov I had tried there “how to contact us by phone. That took me to voicemail which insisted that I select from among options none of which were what I needed. This is because my situation is unusual, but damn, there should be some option for eventually getting to a human being. That’s when I decided to drive the 45 minutes each way. (God bless that man who brought out the chair!) He also, when I sent the chair back in, told me that I needed to get a “failure to file” form, so I wrote that down.
When I got back home I went back to the IRS.gov and followed instructions and requested the form. It didn’t work, and told me that I’d have to go to my local office and have them help me. That’s when I gave up for the day.
I don’t remember any science fiction stories that suggested a future in which “please push 1 for x” would restrict our options to get what we needed from the government. If you don’t fall into one of the pre-determined categories, tough luck on you! This happens with almost every poll I take where they don’t have a “pagan” option- so I’m usually down as “no religious preference” which is NOT true. This is not good.

unicorn-poop   This week we saw a very funny ad- about a reasonable product. (see it here frankly, it makes me wonder how to make rainbow soft serve). But I’ve heard about the benefits of squatting before, and Willow thought it might be worth a try, so we sent for one. We’ll let you know how everything comes out.

We’re still getting one or more political polls every night. Most seem to be poorly disguised propaganda, but some seem to actually be checking the pulse of the nation. There was a very pleasant fellow on one, and after we’d talked about my not having a TV since 2008, I asked him if he’d seen any coverage of the Native American pipeline protest. Yes, he said, he thought he’d seen one or two stories since Labor Day. So, yes, I guess there probably is a media blackout. The protest is huge! There are several Thousands of protesters camping up there, from everywhere- even South America. I can’t imagine why this isn’t on every night. It’s not like they are covering the oil spills from other pipelines, or the other sacred Native American lands that are being stolen. Once again, one can’t depend upon social media to be unbiased either.
I am worried about our eating. I don’t think we had three real meals last week. Kat often has cup of noodle, and I will have a bowl of soup, and Willow will just skip eating (I’m not sure what John has). Tonight we did have a nice supper- Willow made Chicken Parmesan (why do they call it that? It’s mostly mozzarella?), I look forward to being able to cook again… and being able to taste properly.

I have continued to read the Phryne Fisher books- I think I’m on eight out of twenty, although I’ve read a couple out of order because that’s how the library produced them. The library has a glitch on it’s website, and the last few weeks books that have been shipped from a member library to Wadleigh are shown as having arrived, so I’ve been disappointed. Having just read Ruddy Gore, (which takes place in a theater producing the G&S play, but also includes the Chinese silk trade and Spiritualism) I listened to, then watched Ruddigore on youtube. I really find that when lesser (than D’Oyly Carte) companies do the operettas, I have a very hard time following what the chorus is singing. This is a pity as the lyrics are marvelously witty, and I fear I do not know them all. (yet). Ruddigore has always been one of my favorites, and I really enjoyed the references in the book.
Having run out of Fisher books, I turned to books on my “to read” pile- first The Hallowed Isle, an Arthurian novel, which I misplaced halfway through, and Bach’s Illusions, Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah. This is making me turn my eye inward and look at why I may have attracted this mess into my life- not the sort of thing most people want to consider, as it smacks of blaming the victim. Perhaps a better way of looking at it is “What can I learn from this?”

That’s about it for this week. Next week I’m going to try to start doing the New Normal again. It would be VERY nice if I could speak better by then. I’m still blowing air and making fluttering sounds on fs and ps and bs. Oh well. That may be vanity.
Until next week!

You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it come true. You may have to work for it, however.  Richard Bach