Having been asked that question oh, about two dozen times lately, I know I have neglected my audience. So, faithful readers, you may be wondering what we have been doing. Or not. A quick look at my index reveals a slacker’s lack of output. I analyze several factors.
In those dark days after diagnosis, writing became a salve for me, a place to pour out all the jumble that was inside my head. Writing is a great way to organize your thoughts and make them tangible. “Oh, THAT’S what I was thinking.”
The month of August has been so normal, so like our usual life. Mike is busy and, as everyone who sees him says, “He looks so good.” (To his wife, he always looks good but he DID sneak into the barber. “I told him to keep it as long as possible, “ he wailed. No more solo trips!)
The month of August has also been full of adventures, some mundane and some colossal, that have filled our time. Although I’m not living by the clock as I would be if I were at school, the time flies as I do this, run there, clean (yes, friends) those. It does take a concerted effort to sit down and write.
New technology. At home, we have the desk top computer and the wireless hook-up. This second gizmo was a challenge but we have a techno person named Joclyn (and she has some friends at Purdue, a conclave of computer people) who has tweaked, called, tweaked again, called again, and finally got rid of the gremlins, at least for now. Her phone calls, by the way, are awesome to observe, a study in effective assertive consumerism. You would NOT want to mess with The Joss.
I had been using a nice little piece of technology, a notebook that Kokomo Center loaned to each teacher. Although it has its limitations, its portability makes is very useful. NO ONE at school even hinted that I should give it back while I’m on leave. However, I became aware that some people are having to share and, really, it’s best for each teacher to have his own so I began to research a replacement.
I had seen those little net books, compact, light, smaller screen and keyboard, at the store. I had done a little research plus had a lengthy conversation with my Best Buys techno-friend and former student, Brannon. (when ARE we going to have coffee, Buddy?) These mini books are great for writing and can connect to internet; I did not really want to invest in a laptop right now and my computer needs do not involve graphics, games, and other goodies, so this seemed like a good purchase.
The final piece of the endorsement puzzle came from my friend Sherry. Sherry and I began our teaching careers together. She bowed out last year. She is one of the most organized people I know. She is now busy with many projects and a grandbaby, and she loves her net book. OK, enough for me. Back to BestBuys where I plunked down a little cash.
Now this net book is all that I have said above. In cafes, I have seen women pulling these out of smaller purses and setting them up to write. However, my adjustment is slow. This is my first computer with a touch-pad mouse. And it’s very touchy. It is not uncommon for me to look up to the screen and see that I am in a new area of the document. It’s taking many rounds of Solitaire to get the hang of it. The keyboard is ‘cute,’ as all observers say. It’s also smaller so it’s not uncommon to go for “A” and hit CAPS LOCK instead.
Also, and perhaps this betrays how long it’s been since I purchased a new machine, the net book came loaded with WORKS, not OFFICE. Way back in the early ‘90’s, I used WORKS and I liked it. When I began selling my newspaper columns, I needed to switch to OFFICE and WORD. I believe it had something to do with a more universal acceptance. I didn’t really understand it except it made the difference between getting paid and not getting paid. I chose the check.
So before I left the store, I purchased WORKS Student Addition. As the net book has no CD drive, the Geeks had to install it. Home I went and fired up the net book. Well, what is THIS? THIS does not look like WORD. It says WORD. Where are all the familiars? Ah, a newer version. Something else to learn. And Zach returned my notebook to the school.
There have been a few other issues but now I’m almost acclimated so the technology excuse has become lame. Output is a matter of discipline.
I know that there are lots of readers of our blog who check it and then take us to the Father’s throne. I am committed to giving you relevant information as we continue on this adventure.
Right now RIGHT NOW (not a mistake) we are spending Labor Day Weekend at the lake. We are having autumn more-like weather, pleasant days and cool nights. This is ok with us: windows open and lots of blankets on the bed.
Mike is practicing the music he will be playing at the concert on October 11. My task is to firm up travel plans for the next month.
Your prayers have been answered in many ways. We have had a terrific summer. God’s mercies are everlasting.