Not to dwell…

The baby quail are delightful to watch. They get my mind off the unpleasant.

So. Apple contacted me at 7 a.m. yesterday. Just like they said they would. However the news was not good. At least the customer service was excellent with the tech keeping his word on when he’d call. He followed up with me several times throughout the process.

If you missed my post yesterday you can read it HERE to learn what happened.

“It looks like they have recovered all available files that could be recovered. They also stated that they will have no other ways to recover the data if it is still 
missing,” he said.

I looked through my computer to see what files they were able to recover. I noticed three and four copies of the files already there. So now I have a mess to clean up.

I felt a mourning loss for my work. I don’t look forward to my next newsletter that I have to start without the use of the two published newsletters to use as templates.

My son told me something I’ve never heard before. Ernest Hemingway lost 10 years of his work. It was all in one briefcase that he left on a train in France.

I’m not the only one to lose a manuscript. And it happened before computers and the cloud. Who knew?

“Did you know that D.H. Lawrence never edited his drafts?” My son told me. “He threw it out if he didn’t like it and started over.”

He told me to look at my NaNoWriMo missing manuscript as an opportunity, not a loss.

Thinking about that, he may be right. I get too married to my first rough draft. I make little edits here and there on later drafts, but I never get to the meat of throwing out scenes or restructuring my plot. I’ve submitted manuscripts to agents and publishers and have gotten interest. I’ve been given suggestions and have been asked for rewrites. But, after I resubmitted, I’d hear that I didn’t go far enough.

Do you find the silver lining in your mishaps? When life gives you lemons, do you make lemonade? Can you give an example?

Is it ok not to go?

swimming pool in Palm Springs
The 50-meter pool in Palm Springs that was one mile from our old house.

I have a reservation to swim in an hour. I don’t feel like going. I swam two days ago and I felt wonderful during and after my swim.

But today I’m weighing the idea that I don’t HAVE to go. If I decide to stay home and read a book in my back yard, I’m not any less of a person. But I’m torn. I feel guilty for not going. I know I should go. I remember I wrote about something similar years ago in a post “I don’t have to, I get to.” It was about appreciating what we have and that we are able to do things.

Every morning I walk, then I either play ping pong or pickleball a few times a week as well as swim. At my age is it okay to slow down and say no thanks, not today? Or should I say “I get to swim today” and just go?

What are your thoughts? What would you do?

Busy busy busy

Palm Springs swimming pool with clouds
Where I used to lap swim. My new pool has only three lanes.


Thursday I was stressing about whether I should go to coffee with the women’s coffee club or stay home and work on the newsletter. After all, I had lap swimming in a few hours. This is what I was thinking when I wrote about “saying no” earlier in the week. You can read that post HERE.

I decided to go to coffee after all. I needed to run some errands and the coffee shop we were meeting at was close to the Post Office, hardware and grocery stores.

I met a new person who made me laugh. She’s lived in our neighborhood for seven years, but I’ve never seen her before. She had never gone to coffee club. She didn’t know there was a book club, either.

This woman said she was going to Ireland with her running group to run trails along the coast of Ireland. I asked when.

“In two hours,” she said. “I have one hour until my Uber driver picks me up.”

I laughed out loud and said I was worried about going to coffee AND lap swimming in one day! I’m glad I didn’t wimp out. Now it’s time to squeeze in some work on the newsletter before my swim. FYI, next this new friend told me about her trip climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.

Would you have coffee with your neighbors before you left for a trip to Ireland? How about swimming and coffee? Why do you think some people only like to have one event scheduled per day and others can do many?

What, me worry?

saguaro in the Sonoran Desert
Saguaro in front of a neighbor’s yard.

It’s snake season. And I’m not happy about it.

I am terribly frightened of snakes. I saw one the other morning at our park while on our walk.

A neighbor texted to tell me that another neighbor found a rattlesnake in her garage. Her husband trapped it in a garbage can and released it five miles away. I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t feel comfortable driving with a rattlesnake in my car — garbage can or not.

Then last week while we were walking, a neighbor warned us about a huge rattlesnake a few blocks away from where we were headed.

“I’m done!” I said and turned my back and walked back to the house.

Every time I step outside, I take a careful look around. No more walking while looking at my phone. My eyes are peeled. In fact, I’m not spending much time outside anymore.

I googled rattlesnake bites in AZ. This is what I found:

Joe Hymes at the Phoenix Herpetological Sanctuary in north Scottsdale said that with temperatures warming up, this is the time of year that they receive the most calls about snakes.

He told AZ Family, “Most of the time, they are just soaking up the sun, but if you give them space, they will leave you alone.”

Snakes generally hide in cool, damp places.

Hymes explained, “Anywhere [snakes] will not feel overly exposed. They’ll hide under things — bushes, flower pots, raised sheds in the backyard, behind A/C units, behind pool pumps where moisture might condense. Those are all prime rattlesnake hiding spots.”

https://www.iheart.com/content/2021-04-05-its-snake-season-in-arizona-heres-what-to-do-if-you-see-a-venomous-snake/

You know what? Reading that did not make me feel a bit better.

A childhood friend of mine lives in San Diego and was bitten while talking a walk on his lunch hour last week. He said the snake bit him in the calf from behind. He never saw it. He was hospitalized for four days and had one of the worst reactions to a rattlesnake bite the hospital had ever seen.

In Palm Springs, we had rattlesnakes but we saw them on the hiking trails in the surrounding hills, not downtown where we lived.

Do you think my worry about snakes is warranted? Do you have anything you’re afraid of? What the most dangerous thing in your area?

Don’t try this at home!

Healthy saguaro in the Sonoran Desert
A saguaro across the street in the nature’s preserve. It’s well over 100 years old.

Saturday was errand day. My husband and I drove to Tempe — 45 minutes away — to pick up a bookshelf for my son’s birthday present at IKEA. It’s out of stock in California, but he found it here. Our plan was to pick it up and ship it — after the one that I shipped last week was damaged en route. I’ll keep my fingers crossed on this one.

After IKEA, we spotted Dick’s Sporting Goods across the parking lot. We stopped in for a few plates of weights. At Dick’s, the clerk mentioned that their cameras had picked up the murder suspect’s vehicle during their getaway.

“Murder suspect?” I asked.

“Yes, didn’t you hear? We had a shooting in the IKEA parking lot a few days ago.”

No I hadn’t heard, and I couldn’t wait to get out of there. I googled it and it was a drug deal in the middle of the day gone bad. Yes, in the IKEA parking lot. The shooters were 17 and 18 years old!

Not the story I cared to hear about on a sunny Saturday standing right where it happened.

During the time we left the house, to the time we left Dick’s and headed to our final stop at Costco, my phone rang every two minutes. It was nonstop and I was going nuts. I was already stressed by the crazy drivers on the freeway and learning about teen murderers. I didn’t need my phone blowing up with “Spam Risk” and random lending companies.

I was exasperated and asked my husband “Why do you think my phone won’t stop ringing? What’s going on?” I finally realized I could turn the darn thing off.

“Uh, I was um looking online this morning and I saw some sites about interest rates,” he confessed. “It asked me to fill out a little information and they’d tell me where the interest rates are now. I just wanted to know.”

“And you entered my phone number???!!!”

“No, I put in mine,” he said.

“Funny! It’s my phone ringing.”

It’s now days later and my phone still rings, although it’s not constant. I asked some of the companies to take us off the list — that we aren’t interested. That doesn’t stop them.

My son said the same thing happened to him. He was looking to buy a car and there were some sites that offered to find the best deals. He made the fatal mistake of entering his name and phone number. His phone immediately blew up with car dealers from throughout California.

Don’t try this at home! Unless you enjoy your phone ringing every two minutes. If you want information on cars, interest rates or whatever, take the time to contact the businesses yourself.

Have you ever filled out an online form and gotten a million phone calls? What was it for? How did you get them to stop? What would you do if your spouse entered your info on a random website?

My ears are ringing

Summerland beach
This is where I was when the ringing in my ear began on summer vacation.

Actually it’s only my right ear. Sunday it started ringing so loudly I couldn’t function. I went back to bed and hid under the covers.

Monday morning I called the ENT and asked for an appointment or a prescription. This happened to me during our last day of summer vacation in August. As soon as we got home from our 10-hour drive, I called the doctor. The ENT got me in right away.

Here’s a health tip:

If you experience tinnitus which is ringing or buzzing in the ear, go to the doctor ASAP. I was diagnosed with sudden hearing loss of an unknown cause. The doctor told me that if I had waited more than one or two weeks — the loss of hearing would have been permanent.

The treatment is a heavy cycle of prednisone. It worked last time and the doctor called in a RX for me Monday. I’m literally crawling out of my skin right now, but a few days of discomfort seem worth keeping my hearing. The ringing has stopped. But I couldn’t sleep last night and I found myself listening to podcasts and playing today’s Wordle after midnight.

A friend’s daughter who is in her late 20s developed terrible tinnitus after her second COVID shot. That was last summer and it hasn’t gone away.

Have you experienced ringing in the ears and what did you do about it? Have you had to take prednisone before? How did you do?