Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Oh, Bother...

After what seems to be an eternity I have a connection for my keyboard - again.  You see I only have had a keyboard with a very black screen and no computer.  It's a long story.  Simply put I lost my old friend in a lightening strike on Memorial Day.

I bought a new(er) tower for a few days thanks to my son and a local computer store, that is until it's old owner came back to haunt my screen with boxes filled with "didn't save," and "lost files."  So the black tower was taken from me and returned from whence it came - for repairs, erasure and other corrective surgeries.

Today it returned strangely different, and yet somehow the same.

I'm relearning some things, and finding my way through the Alice like world that is like my old computer - but isn't as well.  I only have a Swiss cheese folder for my files these days.  The computer seems to be taking forever to find each rabbit hole that holds what files are there...I've lost so many since the accident.

Maybe a blank slate is better than nothing, but I certainly miss my old blather.  Hopefully, I will return to the real me soon, but until then I shall play with the words and pop in and out with my own elegant and colorful Cheshire Cat online.

Cheshire Cat: You may have noticed that I'm not all there myself.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

One Thing After Another...

First, we lost our computer to a lightening strike on May 31st, and now the new(er) computer we bought to replace it has had major problems!  I have not been online in so long.  I picked it up today after over four days in the shop for repairs.

Definitely an UGH! moment or two over this new computer!

After days of writing on a legal pad I will try to type it all in and am hoping to get something new up here in the next week or two so thanks for everyone's patience!

(Thought you might like a pic from my garden this year!)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Days with the Circus

This is a picture of my grandmother, Winona Fowler.  She's dressed for her day as a part of her father's 3 ringed circus, and yes, that is a whip in her hand.  She and her family traveled with a group of buckskin clad American Indians, all types animals, and many performers including aerialists.  From alligators to the big cats there really was a true menagerie of creeping crawling wildlife.

Over the years my grandmother told her many stories of her life as, "Baby Nona," which because I was so young were gone quickly along with so much of my childhood memories.  Thankfully I have some stories as do each of my cousins and we have begun to share those to put together.  Through the retelling of our stories and the pictures of her, her family and the circus that have surfaced since she died we are getting a wonderful picture of her early life.

My own memories of being touched by that long ago circus can be told through those velvety soft buckskin outfits that were in her upstairs closet when we were little.  A cousin and I would spend long hours imaging a circus life as we touched first and then wore those native American outfits in that attic closet.  We even got to wear them sometimes for Halloween which was a real treat as well as one of the most exciting thing for each of us.  When we wore the buckskins we could almost reach out though the time warp and touch a life we could only imagine.

We never realized the gifts she gave us as children at the time.  Those little tidbits of a her circus life were like fairy stories compared to our 1960s lives in suburbia.

Today I truly cherish the glimpses of those almost still life images from her very real past.  I wish there were enough stories to build a book with, but I have to admit that even though they are scant in number they hold a large part of my imaginary life as a child.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Summer - Fade In, Fade Out

We've had a few cold, non-humid days and after weeks of heat and rather extreme humidity.   You never know from day to day what' coming, unless you religiously follow the weather and even then it can surprise you.  It's funny how the weather is starting to mimic that of the places in the South that I've visited.

When I was growing up, the weather here in the summer was cooler, and most definitely less humid!  Don't misunderstand me, it had it's hot humid days and weeks sometimes of intense heat but they were few and we could revel in the high 70s and low 80 degree weather for much of the summer according to the Old Farmer's Almanac as well as my own memory. 

This spring and these first few days of June have certainly outdone most of those summers I remember in temperatures and humidity.  The amazing thing is that we've had both the cold, dry days, interspersed with those extremely hot and humid ones both within the same weeks.  

Many love the hot and sticky weather, but I find I operate better on those cooler days and tend to hide out in the air conditioning during the really hot and sticky days.  For me, the cooler temps offer a freedom from the sweat and chaffing that drives my days during these kind of summers.  That search for cooler temps has fostered my night owl habits, which continues to drive my existence even today.

So I patiently await the cooler temps.  I do love the flowers and gardens of summer, but not what makes them prosper.  I tend more to hover around the air conditioning during extremely humid days for comfort, and I pray for those first fall days. 

I know I'm strange but hey, it takes all types to make a world!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

A Celeration of Life, and Music

My mother-in-law was the last of my husband and my parents alive.  She died on May 30th at 90 years old.  Today we celebrated her life in the music of her grandchildren.  She was a piano teacher for 30 years, and played that and the harpsichord for years.  It was a real celebration of her and the legacy of music that has permeated the family for more years than I cam count.

She tried to teach me piano when I was in my late 30s, but it didn't take with me.  Though I can sing, the piano was way too confusing!  But on rainy afternoons when I visited we use to sit at the piano and while she played I would sing along with almost every song that had words. She knew I loved the old gospel songs, and the Big Band music from the 30s and 40s and her memorized repertoire of songs was huge!

I grew to really appreciate her gift over the years and though only the girls of the family had the gift for music, we all got to experience in the generation of the grandchildren the gifts of music that were passed on.  Today there is a concert level pianist, who teaches music as well; a violinist who is really phenomenal; and another granddaughter who teaches piano and has a voice like an angel.  Actually all 21 of her grandchildren love music, and many play piano or guitar simply for their own enjoyment, as do two of her daughters as well.

There are 15 great-grandchildren of varying ages who were exposed to her love of music, and two more on the way by the end of the summer.  We really all are anticipating her cherished gift of music will continue and sprout from these children's music loving homes in the coming years as well.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Thank You

Our computer got fried when lightening struck our cable, phone and internet provider's connector to our house.  We lost the computer, and were without phone service except for one lone cheap cell phone.  And it's funny...because I should be frustrated or very angry over what happened with my computer and all the gadgets that are connected or get "fed" off that hard drive, but I'm not.  I am angry about having to put out over $300 to get a new computer and back online as well as back to all that I do with my computer, but I'm certainly not at people that were involved.

Let me explain.  The young man at the computer store also went above and beyond to help me find a very good used computer. But this whole mess killed all the capabilities to Hot Sync my Palm and I had to call Tech Support this afternoon.  I was on the phone for over 2 hours, and it did cost me $40 to get it fixed because it was out of warranty but the gentleman I spoke with was so patient.  The call was of course handled offshore so we had to work at understanding each others English.  He actually gave more time and energy than he needed to to help my simple old Palm, and in the end he totally solved the problem.  His kindness and willingness to talk me through what I needed to do was really great.  

 I'm learning that nasty things continue to happen - and our family seems lately to be more prone than some to have almost everything go wrong, when it can...but in all the muck there are gifts like this kind of service that make it if not worthwhile at least very bearable.

I have a thought.  What makes all the messes of life worth living through is the people, the new friends who cross our paths to lift us up during those difficult times.

Thank you to David Anderson at Palm Support (No that isn't his real name I'm sure.).  He was a gift to me this day. A gift of laughter and expertise beyond anything I have every experienced before.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

New Computer...

Well, I will be a bit behind for a while because the day before yesterday our internet, phone and TV provider's link here at home got struck by lightening and my old computer got totally fried.  I had three posts that I was working on but hadn't downloaded yet and they're gone, as are more than half of my pictures because I hadn't yet saved them to my external harddrive yet.  My external harddrive survived with much of my stuff thank goodness!

The really good news is I have a new (used) computer that has five times the space that the old one and it's about five years newer than the old one too...but I am having to down load all by bookmarks from the hard copy, and all that is needed for me to operate as well.  So I will be spending the next few days re-entering what I have in hard copy and downloading what I can from disk that I have. 

I am thankful to be back and will be writing again really soon!