2018 Life Logs, Day 43—Happy Darwin Day

2018 Life Logs, Day 43—Happy Darwin Day
Date: Monday, February 12, 2018
Weather: Sunny with Temp Dipping Overnight; High 51, Low 22 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

I’m listening to Heather’s weekly Living Lab science program while writing this log and she opened her show by saying, “Happy Darwin Day!” Well, that got my attention. Who knew today was Darwin’s birthday. He would have been 209. I think only Heather knew that! Sometime in the 1980’s I read Irving Stone’s biographical novel of Darwin called The Origin and that started a life-long love affair. I was fascinated and decided that I just had to go to the Galapagos. In fact, that is the way Mark got me to sail around the world with me. It was my ticket to the Galapagos. I read The Voyage of the Beagle, Peter Nicol’s Evolution’s Captain, Darwin’s Finches, and I bought every natural history guide on the Galapagos I could find. Then, we actually sailed there and Heather and Jed joined us. I’ll never forget having lunch in the shady area behind Tortuga Beach with Heather and Jed while reading Darwin’s Finches. And while doing so, those finches sat on our blanket with us hoping for bits of our lunch. It was a dream come true for me. So, yes. Happy Birthday, Charles Darwin. And thank you for helping all of us look at the natural world through your eyes. And thank you, Heather, for reminding us of this day.

Warm Monday, cold Tuesday, warm again on Wednesday. So goes the weather, but the forecast states that tomorrow will be the coldest day in the next ten, so the moderate weather should return after tomorrow. I caught up with Sam of Windbird today and found that Windbird is stuck in the Turks and Caicos, with the only possible window in this month for getting out being this Friday and Saturday. Sam took advantage of the down time, to do a flying stint to Chili and is doing training in Atlanta on Wednesday and Thursday. But if the window really opens on Friday, he and Dawn hope to head to the Dominican Republic. I’m still hoping to catch up with them at some point, so I will keep following their progress and make a determination at the last minute when to fly down to either the DR or to Puerto Rico. It could be in a couple of weeks or nearer the end of March. All depends on the weather. Stay tuned.

I made my weekly veggie soup today. It is so easy to make and so nice to have as a fall back for lunch or dinner. I just chop a cup and a half each of onions, carrots, celery, and zucchini, sauté those ingredients adding thyme, salt, and pepper, then add my homemade chicken mineral broth, crushed tomatoes, and kidney beans. After that simmers for about 20 minutes, I add three packed cups of Swiss chard. Lots of veggies and so delicious.

And how about those Olympics? I am right now enjoying the end of the women’s snowboarding with USA Chloe Kim taking the Gold. A great addition to Red Gerard taking the men’s snowboarding Gold. And both at the ripe old age of 17! Go, Olympians. And you’ve got to love those Toyota “Start Your Impossible’ commercials. They get a Gold from me.

And by the way, my computer is still syncing with the Google Cloud. I don’t think this is good news.

2018 Life Logs, Day 42—Last Soccer Sunday

2018 Life Logs, Day 42—Last Soccer Sunday
Date: Sunday, February 11, 2018
Weather: Warm with Lots of Rain; High 51, Low 44 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Today was another day filled with watching the Olympics and the last of soccer Sundays for this year. Jonah’s game ended in a 1-1 tie with Jonah making the goal for his team. Sam’s gamed also ended in a 1-1 tie with Sam making the goal for his team and his best buddy Sebastian making the goal for the opposing team. We will now have a break from soccer for a few weeks. After soccer, the Goldstones gathered here for dinner. Heather was the last to arrive as she had an afternoon book club. By the time she got her, she had to wade through inches of water in the parking area. We got a lot of rain this afternoon and the weather is spring warm, not winter cold. We watched more Olympics together and then had dinner. It was so nice to begin the new week together.

I’m afraid I don’t have good news on the computer front. My computer is still syncing with Google Drive. Either I have a very, very slow internet connection or something has gone astray. I go to the gym for a class first thing in the morning and will then come home to figure out what to do next. Stay tuned on that one.

2018 Life Logs, Day 41—Enjoying the Olympics

2018 Life Logs, Day 41—Enjoying the Olympics
Date: Saturday, February 10, 2018
Weather: AM Sunshine, Then Overcast; Warmer with High 52, Low 43 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

This will be short because it is 7:37 pm and the coverage of Olympic figure skating and men’s downhill skiing begins at 8 pm. I’m aware that I can watch specific coverage on NBCSN, but for tonight I will watch NBC’s edited coverage. So, I will wrap this up quickly and sit back to enjoy my evening of watching. The jury is still out on my computer issues. The syncing process I described in the log I wrote earlier today is still in progress. Google Drive currently reports that it is syncing 25,101 of 50,087 items for a total of 459 GB’s. Both the number of items synced items and the number of total items have steadily gone up all afternoon. The young man at the computer shop told me this is a good thing. I just don’t understand it, but I will hope that by morning the process is done and all is well.

2018 Life Logs, Day 40—Google Driving Me Crazy

2018 Life Logs, Day 40—Google Driving Me Crazy
Date: Friday, February 9, 2018
Weather: Mostly Cloudy; High 32, Low 31 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

More specifically, it is Google Drive that is driving me crazy. I am writing this log a day late because I had to take my computer to the shop and leave it overnight. It is now Saturday and I obviously have my computer back, but it is still trying to resolve its problem. The young man at the computer shop doesn’t think my computer has a virus. He believes that the problem arose because of something that happened with my Google Drive. I pay for this service as it constantly, I thought, does a sync with what is on my computer and the Google “cloud”. Justin encouraged me to use Google Drive as the cloud storage services store my files and photos in a central location, the “cloud”, which gives me some backup protection in case I lose something. But the automatic syncing function has been turned off on my computer. When? How? I don’t know. And then for some reason, the syncing function went bonkers on my computer on Tuesday and started sending random files and photos to the recycle bin. On Wednesday and Thursday, I spent my time trying to back up files and photos on a hard drive in case the problem was a virus, but even that was more difficult than normal. And when I would restore the files and photos that were being put in the recycle bin, Google Drive just put more and more in there. Yesterday morning, I thought I had everything under control, so I left the computer and went to the kitchen to do a bit of cooking. When I got back to my computer about two hours later, the recycle bin was once again full. I finally panicked and called the woman who helped me with a computer issue this fall, only to find that she is in Hawaii. So, reluctantly, I headed to Cape Coastal Computers. I say ‘reluctantly’ because in the fall of 2016 when I had a major email catastrophe, I took my computer there and was less than happy with the results. When I picked up my computer this afternoon, I was told to keep it on until Google has finished syncing. This was done yesterday and during the night and when the process was completed this morning, the young man restored everything that was in the recycle bin, uninstalled and reinstalled Google Drive, and started another sync. It is not halfway there yet, but at least I can use the computer while this is happening. When the sync is done, the young man thinks things will be fine. But if I still have the problem of files and photos being sent to the recycle bin, he said he was clueless as to what could be causing it. At that point, if he is clueless, I don’t know where that puts me! I don’t even want to think about it. But for now, I will continue checking my documents for items that have been deleted through this process. I started with my Travel Logs yesterday and found that there are definitely missing logs as far back as 2005. I do have these backed up, but it is painstaking process to find the missing ones and replace them. Fun, fun.

I hope you loved watching the opening of the Olympic Games 2018 last night on NBC as much as I did. I had read that the event executive producer Yang Jung-woong said the “Peace in Motion” ceremony was designed to unfold like a winter fairy tale. And it did so beautifully. The only negatives for me were the commercials and the fact that our vice-president and the sister of Kim Jong-un were sitting just a few feet from one another, yet neither recognized the other. But at least North and South Korea acknowledged each other and their athletes marched as united Koreans. Imagine . . .

John Lennon, Plastic Ono Band
Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today
Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace, you
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world, you
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one

2018 Life Logs, Day 39—Loony

2018 Life Logs, Day 39—Loony
Date: Thursday, February 8, 2018
Weather: Mostly Sunny; High 41, Low 22 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

This morning I attended a Newcomers Meeting. The speaker was a Woods Hole Oceanographic scientist, Dr. Ralph Stephen, who spoke about this experience of setting up seismographs in the Antarctic in an attempt to track climate change. Dr, Stephen has spent his like tracking seismic activity, mostly on the ocean floor. But in 2014, he went with a team to the Antarctic in an attempt to measure the impact on Antarctic ice from violent storms in Alaska. Yes, you read that correctly. Storms off the Alaska coast sent waves all the way to the Antarctic that have an impact on the ice flows, and as storms intensify, the impact on Antarctic ice intensifies. It was a good presentation, but as always, I think the best part of these presentations are the questions from the Newcomers at the end. The questions are always so poignant. Great group of people.

When I got home, however, that is when things once again went ‘loony’. Yesterday I called my computer issues weird, but today, at the same time that I was dealing with the same weird issues, I saw some newcomers in the harbor. There was a pair of loons courting and I just had to go down on the dock to try and good a photo of them. I was not particularly successful at the ‘good’ part, but I did get a photo. It was much colder than I thought and my fingers were freezing, so I didn’t stay long. But I loved watching the pair of loons and listening to their haunting calls. So that was the part of my ‘loony’ afternoon. The other part was continuing to deal with my computer issues. I still don’t know what is going on. I either have a virus or I have managed to do some things on my computer that seem almost impossible. I will continue to try and track down the cause of the problem tomorrow and if I am not successful, I will call in a computer ‘doctor’.

Since Jed is out of town, I did take a mid-afternoon break to go pick-up Ollie from school and then go back in an hour to pick up Jonah after his Reader’s Theater after-school club. I worked with Ollie to get his bag of 100 identical items to take to school tomorrow. It is the 100th day of the school year!

2018 Life Logs, Day 38—Weird Day

2018 Life Logs, Day 38—Weird Day
Date: Wednesday, February 7, 2018
Weather: Overcast and Rainy; High 53, Low 24 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

This whole day was just a little weird. I’ll start with the weather. It was cold and rainy this morning when I went to the gym and it was still that way when I headed to Heather’s in the late afternoon. Heather had an all evening PTO meeting and Jed was headed to Boston to fly to North Carolina. So, I fixed dinner for the boys and put them to bed. Between dinner and bed, we turned the kitchen into an Olympic speed skating rink. I showed the boys how to use paper towels under their stocking feet to make the floor slippery and away we skated. And before dinner the boys entertained me with the remnants of dry ice Jed had brought home for them yesterday. They well know what happens when you add water to dry ice, but tonight’s experiment dealt with what happens when you add liquid detergent to that mix. They thought it would make a bubbly mixture, but they didn’t expect that the liquid dish detergent would solidify like a bar of soap. I always enjoy their inquisitive minds. By the time Heather got home, the boys were in bed. She went up to say her good nights and I snuck out the front door. I was shocked at how warm it was outside. The high temp for today was 53, but that didn’t happen until tonight. The high for tomorrow will be 32 degrees F, so by morning it will be freezing again. Just weird.

The next weird thing that happened today has to do with technology. I kept getting these strange messages from Facebook friends on my phone, but then I realized that they were really messages from mutual friends of Mark. Something is going on with his Facebook account and I have put out a call for help to Heather and Justin. But at the same time, I was having weird things happening on my computer. I was working with photos and accidentally deleted a photo. I went to the Recycle Bin to retrieve the photo and found that there were hundred of photos there that had been deleted today. I spent a lot of time dealing with that and thought I had it all straightened out. But when I got home from Heather’s tonight, I found my Recycle Bin once again full of hundreds of my photos. Thankfully I have back-ups of most everything, but I am going to need help in figuring out what is happening.

I will start tomorrow morning by attending a Newcomers monthly meeting and I’m pretty sure that won’t be weird. So I’ll have a little reprieve. The meeting will take all morning and then I will head home to work on the ‘technical difficulties’ that arose today. Back to weird. But none of the weird things that happened today touch a candle to what is happening in Washington. I keep hearing the same refrain playing inside my head. “May you live in the most interesting of times.” I just never wanted that refrain to refer to my government. I’d really like that to be normal, not ‘interesting’!