Saturday, April 27, 2019

Early to Rise

No way did I expect to be up and out by 9:20 this Saturday morning ─ my scheduled indoor activity day.
But it happened.
Not because I wanted it to, but because it had to happen.
In a custody dispute ─ seeking full custody to remove his 12-year-0ld daughter from a horrendous situation involving her stepfather, with mom calling her a liar, Trainer asked that Thursday’s workout be moved to Friday.
“Sure, I’m flexible” said I.
Then, on Friday, as I was suiting up for the rescheduled workout, I get a message Trainer is now stuck in court, filing paperwork, can I reschedule to 9:30 this morning, Saturday.
Having had the sole responsibility of raising twin daughters, after divorcing their father, Trainer’s plight took me back to all the times my work life was turned upside down one or the other twin was ill or Twin 1 was misbehaving at school (parent/teacher conference), Twin 2 was getting bullied or beat up at school (parent/principal sit-down) or there was a school event one or the other wanted me to attend, plus a myriad of other things necessitating my coming in late to work, leave early, take a vacation day, and how difficult it was for employers to understand. 
It was difficult for the twins to understand as well.
I didn't get much help and support from them. In fact, they seemed to resent my not being there for them 24/7, saying once they wished I was like the neighbor lady who was home all-day making cookies. I said I could do that as well but, with me not working, we’d go hungry and end up homeless. I also pointed out how ill-prepared for real life the neighbor lady’s children were because she so controlled their every action, whereas they (my girls) were allowed to do this that and the other.
That was my life as a single parent to girls coming into their own, not understanding their words and actions were sometimes making an already tough job even tougher and often threatened loss of that which enabled me to feed, clothe them, keep a roof over our heads. (Their father was not in the picture during those hard years. I was still in hiding from him.)
My own history making me sympathetic to Trainer’s position, knowing this is just the tip of the iceberg in what he’s about to experience in raising a daughter ─ soon to be a teenager, my reply of course was “No problem. Good luck” BUT 9:30? 
I’m generally an early riser, but I don’t get ready to deal with outside until around 10:30/11:00.
On the other hand, this morning was good practice for when I start participating in 5Ks again, as most races necessitate being on-site by 6:30, which means up, dressed, fed and on the road sometimes by 4:00 in the morning.
At any rate, Trainer is having to shuffle more than just me around. His evening after-work client was on her way out when I walked in this morning and, inasmuch as the courts are putting him through hoops to get his daughter, my schedule of Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, 11:45, is in jeopardy. Until all is said and done, days may be shifted around, hours may change and he says training might be as late as 7:00 pm.
I don’t mind.
And while we’re on the subject of the trials and tribulations of child rearing ... I was quite impressed with myself when, on Thursday, Twin 1 messaged there’s an outbreak of measles on Skid Row — where she and her group of volunteers go on weekends to provide services for the homeless. 
She was fairly certain she’d been vaccinated as a child but wanted to hear me say for sure “Yes, you’ve been vaccinated”.
I did her one better.
It took mere seconds to pull her Immunization Record from 1967, take a snapshot indicating she and her twin had been immunized at 10 months old, and message the photo to her.
I was terribly impressed with my ability to ferret out the documentation so quickly, expecting to hear back “WOW mom! This is impressive. You not only kept our original immunization record, but knew where it was and retrieved so quickly”. Instead I got “Thanks”.
Maybe it’s not such a remarkable feat after all. Maybe all mothers are like me in that I don’t know what I did with the eyeglasses I had in my hands a few seconds ago, but know where 51-year-old baby documents are located.
Twin 1 and Twin 2 went out and got booster shots the next day.
I’m thinking maybe I should do the same before someone, or their unvaccinated grandchild or great grandchild, brings measles into this complex.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Days Weeks Months Later

After 13 months, an estimated 2,972 hours, I’m just days away from completing that needlepoint project.

I’ve already purchased the poly fill, backing and trim to turn it into a decorative pillow, so there’ll be no delay and I can immediately start in on my next project ─ a gift for Twin 2 because she said, “I want something” ─ meaning she wants one of my counted cross-stitch projects in her home.
I certainly wasn’t going to part with anything I’ve already made ─ she can have them when I’m dead, so I compromised with a pattern I think she’d like.

This newest project should go a lot quicker as there are not as many moving parts.
I'm thinking maybe in time for Christmas, but it will have to be framed, rather than turned into a decorative pillow, because she has a dog that thinks everything coming into the house is his.
And while I’m on the subject of time periods. It’s taken 12 months for Corporate to find a new victim ... oops! I mean a new Community Manager, but finally they have someone in the position as of this past Monday.
This makes him our sixth Community Manager in my seven years of living here. To recap, the other five were either fired or quit.
The new guy is coming to us all the way from Texas so, after going through the hassle of relocating to California, I have a feeling he’ll tough out whatever Corporate throws at him and stick around for a while.
It may be the double-standard will come into play and, because he’s male not female, Corporate won’t ride his arse as much as they did others.
Time will tell.
Elsewhere on the complex, Nosey (the neighbor across the quad, downstairs corner unit that sits inside her unit, watches everything that goes on, gets up and rushes to her patio to eavesdrop on conversations if she hears talking going on outside) was taken to the hospital this past Sunday. She fell in her unit, broke her hip.
That’s very bad news for her, a widow with her only family being a sister, but not surprising. It’s what happens around here with those who sit all day, no exercise, never go out ─ not even to walk as far as the Community Room to attend events. I’ve watched inactivity lead neighbors to strokes and to dependency on a walker.
Doing nothing, going nowhere is an easy trap to fall into. I should know because, after the Wonder Woman 5K back in November, I all of a sudden came down with the inactivity bug and was quite content to sit on the couch day after day after day. BUT the more I sat, the worse I felt ─ weak, tired, back ached, knees hurt.
So happy am I to have become “sick and tired of being sick and tired”, nipped my inactivity in the bud and to now be pushing myself with a personal trainer.
Not sure if Nosey will be able to return and care for herself. I hope so. No one minds her being nosey. She’s nice, friendly, keeps an eye out and alerts us to anything we need to know ... and sometimes gets in our ears with that which we don’t need to know, but fun to hear. LOL.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

The Day After

Already over yesterday’s horrible date with the dentist, Dr. Mc Dreamy, I was able to get caught up on my exercise homework first thing this morning, then get out, run errands ─ car wash, gas, groceries.
The price of gas was a shock.

Still, instead of saving gas by heading to the market on the corner, I drove way out-of-the-area to the market, same chain, in a nicer area because our market is redlining us yet again.
They had this big todo, a short while ago, with sprucing up the outside, the inside, had a bunch of bigwigs hanging around, then announced a Grand Reopening.
It was pretty sweet for a while ─ the nicest of fresh fruit and vegies, etc., but last week I noticed they’d backslid into eggs with a sell by in two days, fruit/vegies that looked unappealing, saving money for the corporation by dumping that which is least desirable, soon to be unsaleable, on folks that have no choice but to accept because they have no transportation out of the area.
So off I went to the market where the new senior complex is going up, next door to the fire department.
Checking on the lot behind the market, I see work has begun.

The location is ideal, with the shopping center to the left, the walking trail behind, Fire Department to the right ─ a daily dose of this going back/forth in the area …..

Eye Candy

Construction is due to be completed by Fall of 2020. So, though I love my unit, like my neighbors, the price is right, have no plans to move, a lot can happen between now and then, so we’ll see.
Tomorrow is Q’s brunch in the beach area.
After he talked me into rethinking my rsvp thanks but no, I thought it over and decided it really would have been too much trouble to head out of town this weekend. THEN, senior moment, I quickly forgot to let him know I was a definite no.
Fortunately, thoughts of the event rolled back around and I was able to let him know I’d not be making it down that way with enough lead time, I think, not to shop groceries to prepare a special meal for me.
“Aww ok. Next time!” was his reply, so I think we’re good.
Tomorrow, Easter Sunday, is my no exercise day. I'll be laying low, watching television, working on crafts.

Friday, April 19, 2019

Good Friday It Was Not!

Arriving early for this morning’s dental procedure, the plan was to calm myself by meditating in the car before heading in. However, seeing a crowd at the end of the road, thinking it was a Farmer’s Market, I parked, walked over.

Definitely not a Farmer’s Market. Instead, it was a “Turn Back” abortion protest at the Planned Parenthood building.
I didn’t know people still did that sort of thing.
The posters they held up as they chanted and prayed were something out of nightmares, so one glance had me heading back to check in at the dental office. 
Speaking of nightmares, the procedure was not fun and, just when I made it through, thinking it was over, glad it was over, that I’d put it behind me, Mc Dreamy said, “I’ll turn you over to Jenny and see you in two weeks”.
“Jenny will put in a temporary”.
“WHAT?! WHY?!”
“The lab has to make the permanent”.
“The next part should be easy. No needle”.
I had no idea this was a two-stage process. 
In fact, I don’t remember ever having a cap done in the first place, and the putting in of a temporary (in my previous dentist's office), returning two weeks later for a permanent, is something I'm not likely to forget. I’ve had fillings where they slap in some metal and you’re outta there, but they are assuring me it was a cap not a filling, and at one time I must have experienced this before.
It must have been in another life, or I was so traumatized I'd pushed it out of my memory bank, but whatever. I'm just hoping nothing else goes wrong because I can’t go through this again.
By early afternoon, my jaw hurt. I was in tears, and I'm a person that never cries. 
By late afternoon, the pain had subsided and it was business as usual.
I skipped today’s Pain Cave activity homework. My poor body had suffered enough trauma for one day.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019


Walking into the Community Room yesterday Brrrr! is what I felt .... a freezing cold atmosphere in the room.
The event was the Easter Potluck and I arrived late, popped in briefly, coming directly from a session with the personal trainer, to take pics for the residents' facebook page.
No one was talking.
No one seemed to be having a good time and the room was nearly empty, with only a handful of residents in attendance.
I quickly assessed the situation and attributed the pall over the event to the presence of The Seer and Shadow.
They were sitting at a corner table, away from other residents, The Seer looking dark and ominous.
The personality traits she’s demonstrated since hooking up with Shadow (bitter, overly sensitive ─ imagining slights where none were intended, critical and resentful of others) make her no longer pleasant to talk to or be around, so I assume the pall over the room was everyone being on eggshells.
Fortunately, she rarely attends events these days. Preferring to spend all her time in a corner of the Game Room, on the computer while Shadow is at the pool table or in their respective units.
I’d said a cherry hey to the room as I entered.
Didn’t hear anyone reply.
So, as I walked around taking a few pics, I tried to engage first the Activity Director, then Church Lady.
Neither would look up and engage.
Activity Director seemed depressed. I’m not sure if it was the brrrr atmosphere bringing her down or the fact so few attended.
Probably both.
On my way out, heading for my unit, I noticed The Seer was sitting alone. Shadow had gone out for a smoke. So, I made a point to stop by her table, say hey.
Now she engaged!
She wouldn’t stop talking but, like I said, I don’t enjoy our conversations any longer so, as soon as I was able, I excused myself saying I had to go recover from my workout.
So that was yesterday.
This morning was that second-opinion appointment with the dentist ─ Dr. Mc Dreamy.
Arriving as 10:26 for my 10:30 appointment, there was no wait time. I was immediately called in.
Mc Dreamy attributed the off/on discomfort, to the left side of my jaw, not to the loose crown, but to a bite issue.
He used that drill thingie, called the bite corrected, no charge.
As for the crown replacement, no way around it, the work has to be done, a $1255 procedure.
But it is what it is.
I asked if dentistry had evolved to a kinder gentler method of numbing other than the needle.
There are options he said, none of which they use because they’ve not been proven effective.
They will, however, apply a numbing gel before using the needle.
The whole consultation took less than 10 minutes, but Mc Dreamy began talking about his wife’s visit out-of-state to attend to her terminally ill mom. For a half an hour, he spoke on the family drama ─ the poor woman with only weeks to live, and her children (sons, daughters) fighting for control of the estate.
His wife has the Power of Attorney, but on the financial side, not the medical.
It was done that way because whoever set it up did not want the individual with financial control to also have medical control, for obvious reasons, so no one is in charge of medical.
The youngest of the children (a son) wants his money now to fund a move to Florida, so he’s undermining what medical care the others have agreed to put in place to make mom comfortable for the time she has remaining. He wants mom off pain meds because he wants her lucid so he can control her and get her to agree to what it is he wants.
He doesn’t get that she won’t be lucid because of the pain she’ll have without the meds.
Plus, youngest son doesn’t believe mom’s dying of cancer. He thinks the telephone lines have made her ill.
He sounds delusional and dangerous.
It was a fascinating story Mc Dreamy was telling me, but most of the time I was looking at his face thinking how handsome he still is, watching his mouth move as he spoke, and daydreaming about his handsome self.
At any rate, back on Friday. If he hurts me, my opinion will probably change. I’ll begin thinking of him as a whole lot less handsome.

Saturday, April 13, 2019


I skipped today’s exercise ─ that which the personal trainer suggested for when I’m not with him. Not because I didn’t have the time, but because I couldn’t spare the energy. 
Based on how drained I felt after last year’s egg coloring party, I knew I was going to need everything I had to deal with the distraction of children in the room.
And so it was that the kids outnumbered the adults three to one.
Of course, the first eight plopped down at the table where I’d set up.
I probably could have handled it except those eight were related to Greedy Grabby and her group of residents. Greedy Grabby joined them. She talks too much and too loud, so I said, “I need more room” and moved to another table where I was later joined by The Baker’s Husband and her great grandson and great granddaughter ─ both of whom I enjoy, so it all worked out as more children arrived, joined that first table, occupied two other tables. 
In fact, I was so comfortable chatting with my two ─ The Baker’s great grandson and great granddaughter, that we had ourselves a little party, ending with dancing the floss dance to the tune of Baby Shark.

Great grandson is bashful, so he declined dancing with us.
Even though it all worked out, I yet and still was tired by the time I made it back to my unit.
Maybe it was the dancing.
There were sodas, chips, popcorn for attendees. Then Apache showed up, feeling his oats, back to his normal self, saying he was no longer hiding from management that management was hiding from him. Something about he went to the Housing Department. Someone from the agency showed up, talked to Assistant Manager, then told Apache to call if he had any further problems.
I don't know how he does it -- always finds a way to get his way.
He’d also just won big at the casino and shared his winnings with the seniors by getting a resident to man the grill while he (Apache) provided the meats to be BBQed -- hot dogs, pork chops, chicken for the egg coloring party attendees, and others who dropped by just for the food.
Maybe that's his secret -- good Karma. He's extremely generous and kind with others, other than management. LOL.
Instead of my usual glamour glitz eggs, I went with a red white and blue scheme this year, threw in opposite cow prints and one black and silver glitz.

My star stamper didn’t work as well as I would have liked, so I had to free hand the stars. They’re not perfect but, as far as I’m concerned, Easter is done.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Keeping Up with the Seniors

Returning from today’s workout in the Pain Cave, I headed for the mailbox, detouring through the Community Room where I found the seniors gearing up for bingo.
That’s their favorite activity around here ─ that and potlucks.
Seeing my buddy Apache in the room, I asked, “You still here … you behaving yourself?”
If you will recall, he was told to cease and desist harassing management at the risk of being evicted.
He laughingly said he was “somewhat” behaving himself, but mostly just hiding because the maintenance guys had been following him, keeping an eye on who he talks to, in an effort to catch him stirring up trouble, and a bigwig from Corporate was on the property, had been for two days ─ which indicated to him that something was up, so he’d been hiding because he didn’t want to risk being seen.
So much intrigue.
The saga continues.
I’ll probably get an ear full on Saturday when I attend the egg coloring party.
Leaving the Community Room, continuing on to the mailbox, I passed the Maintenance Office, glanced over and saw something weird on the desk.

Do you see it?
I'll give you a hint ……………..

Yep, that's Chewbacca. Maybe it’s a disguise for when the guys are out spying on Apache. ROFLMAO!
Walking from the mailbox to my unit. I came across another interesting sight.

Two birds (love birds?) chillin and relaxing on the railing.
I began walking softly so as not to frighten them as I photographed and got up pretty close before they spotted me, then really close as they determined I might be a danger, turned and flew away.

Last thing I observed was when I turned at my walkway and saw, at end of the walkway, in the parking area, a resident’s car appeared to be leaning.
Curious, thinking it might be a flat tire, I walked closer and saw no, not a flat tire. The resident had parked with the left rear tire up against and on the curb.

Did he or she not feel something was amiss when they rolled up on the curb? How about when they exited the vehicle?
Oh well, senior drivers – the ones who cause the rest of us to have to take a driving test after a certain age.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Be on Time and Wait

After haranguing me with a text message, three days ago, requesting I confirm today’s appointment at the dental office (I confirmed), an email that same day requesting same (I confirmed again), then a phone call (again I confirmed), followed by a reminder text message and email this morning, I arrived promptly at 12:41 today for my 12:45 appointment and waited until 1:10 to be called in for my annual x-ray.
Feeling impatient and more than a little pissed off the dental office had gone to such extremes to make sure I arrived on time only to have me wait, I came thisclose to getting up and walking out at 1:00 but powered through because I needed a cleaning and a tooth looked at.
I have zero pain tolerance, so it was bad news to be told a crown is separating from the tooth and needs to be replaced. But not as bad as what I heard going on in the chair on the other side of the partition.
I heard “tooth broken off at the gum line.”
The woman explained, “I was chomping on some chicken and felt something funny”.
Was she trying to eat the bone?
At any rate, there was so much noise interference, from other conversations, that I couldn’t hear everything the dentist was telling her, but I did hear her options are “bridge or implant”.
The dentist giving me my bad news, which is nothing in comparison, except I am not keen on having the tooth taken care of, because of my low pain threshold, wasn’t my regular guy. My regular guy, Dr. McDreamy, with his silver-haired handsome self, was only working half day today, because he had drop-off and pickup duty for his son as his wife went out of town to attend to her terminally ill mom.
And no, I didn’t ask for all that detailed information, but I didn’t mind getting it.
When I told this morning’s dentist that I have a low pain threshold and would rather live with a little ache, he said “If you chose to ignore the problem, it will cause a worse problem down the road” and that the fix “Won’t hurt. They’ll numb the area”.
“Yes, but the numbing shot hurts”, said I.
“Well yes. That’s the worst part”.
And that's the part I'm afraid of. Last time I had one of those shots, I hurt for days.
I’m such a coward when it comes to pain that I’m contemplating if it’s worth it, at my age, to have the procedure. Like, how long before the tooth gets worse versus how long do I have to live? Will I die/run out of life before the tooth gets worse so having the procedure done now is useless or what?
At any rate, I thanked this morning’s dentist for his input, but said I hope he’d not be offended that I’d be making an appointment with Dr. McDreamy for a second opinion.
Appointment made. I go back next Wednesday.
I’ll probably get thirty thousand reminders to be on time. But if they make me wait again, I'll take it as a sign to leave well-enough alone and walk out. I've done so before, actually twice, but at medical appointments because my time is just as valuable as theirs.
The woman with the tooth broken off at the gum didn’t bat an eyelash at her prognosis, I’m freaking out over a crown replacement.
Maybe she gets off on pain.

Friday, April 5, 2019


Science tells us that it takes 21 days to form a new habit, build a new behavior into your life.
This past Wednesday was the 21st day of switching my daily priority from sitting to being active ─ walking, indoor biking, working out in the Pain Cave with a personal trainer, so that benchmark achieved. Though I can’t say I’m loving this new routine, I am feeling less resentful, than I was when I began this new routine, that life won’t let me remain stroke free, healthy and energetic in old age without considerable effort on my part.
So now a habit? Perhaps.
I still manage to put in daily late afternoon hours into the cross-stitch project I began in May 2018.

Progress: December 2018 - January 2019

Progress: January - April

The characters all filled in now, not so many needle color changes, filling in the edges should go pretty fast ─ moving the original estimated completion date up from 2020 to July or August this year.
I already have a pattern for my next project.
With not much time for reading, I’m still working on finishing Cliff Sims’ Team of Vipers and already have Vicky Ward’s Kushners’ Inc. waiting in the wings as my next read.

Activity Director is planning an Easter Potluck for the seniors on Tuesday the 16th
I’m out because that is one of my Pain Cave session days. However, I think I can manage to get back in time to snap a few photos for the residents’ facebook page towards the end of the event. I also thought I’d not be able to attend the Egg Coloring event. Fortunately, however, it’s been scheduled for a Saturday this year, rather than during the week, because some residents want to include their grandkids and great grands.
I’m already mentally working on new designs I’d like to try on wooden eggs. My creations from previous years are on display in the bookcase and yes, all my eggs are in one basket, so to speak.

I see on the activity calendar that movie night has been cancelled.
That may be because my buddy Apache, who spearheads the event, is in trouble.
He can no longer keep me apprised of the goings on through Facebook or Messenger or Email because someone hacked him and has been posing as him trying to hack me. I don’t know if it’s a troll or one of his girlfriends feeling insecure, misreading my strictly a friendship with Apache, but whatever and whoever, as attempts were made, I blocked off all avenues and told Apache he’d have to catch me out and about when he could. 
Catch me he did, a few days ago, saying Corporate is trying to evict him for “harassment of management.
It’s not like any fool, including Apache himself, couldn’t see this coming as an eventual consequence of his years and years and years long feud with Corporate, various Community Managers, the Assistant Manager and Maintenance Guys, but Apache just couldn’t stop himself from trying to regulate what others should do. He has anger and control issues. Not to mention he enjoys conflict, says it’s the warrior spirit within him.
However, now that there’s been official notification that he has one more time to “harass” management, after which eviction proceedings will be initiated, he looks a little worried and is trying to maintain a low profile.
I don’t think he can maintain a low-profile for very long. It’s just not in his nature.
On the other hand, if he can back off for 21 days, it might become a habit. He can then find himself a new hobby and dig himself out of this hole.