Sunday, November 21, 2021

Retired and a Pandemic? No, I Don't Know What Day It Is.


I'm excited to report that I took a trip!  A short trip.  36 miles, to be exact.  But for two nights I slept in a bed not my own in Daytona Beach Shores, with a magnificent view of the beach.

Buddy also slept away from me for the first time since I adopted him. He spent the couple of days I was at the beach at Fancy Pets in Lake Mary, where he goes for daycare once every week or two.  Other than giving me a cold shoulder for about half an hour, was fine when I picked him up.  Even more important, two weeks later, when I took him for daycare, he didn't hesitate at all.  He was excited to see his human and canine friends again.

Since it was a good experience for both of us, we're going again in a couple weeks.  And, going again in January, depending on the Covid situation.

Meanwhile, I'm enjoying being at home.  Cooking, taking Buddy for walks and enjoying a peaceful, quiet life.

I'm planning to start doing more posts.  Many with short memories of my life/travels.  Like this one:

I had a layover in Atlanta on my way home one weekend in the early 2000's.  My flight was delayed, I was exhausted and was just vegging in a deserted concourse in the wee hours of the morning.  A cleaning woman was humming "Amazing Grace" as she emptied the trash bin near me.  I started humming harmony.  Her humming got a bit louder and so did mine.  Then we both started singing.  Quietly, at first, then full out. By the time we finished we were both grinning like little kids.  We hugged and she went back to work and I went back to my Kindle.

Saturday, October 17, 2020

 One of the benefits of having Buddy is that he makes me walk.  He only weighs 14 pounds but he is very powerful.  He has the ability and willingness to whine for HOURS.  And since his favorite thing is walks, he whined a lot.  Until he got me trained.  Once we were up to four walks a day, the whining stopped, unless I was a bit late heading for the leash.  I don't know where Buddy keeps his watch but he is very committed to staying on a schedule.

This morning we had an early morning pee walk.  That technically should not be necessary, since he has access to a lovely fenced yard, but he prefers a different view.  Later we were having a destination walk - we drive someplace and walk.

This morning, Buddy was very excited to be in the car.  On our way to the dog park he was so excited, he whined and barked continuously.  Ignored pets, favorite treats...just whined.  No drooling, no anxiety, just excitement.

I couldn't stand it anymore so instead of going to the dog park we went to the much closer Lake Mary Event Center.  It was closed so we had the place to ourselves.  I was surprised to find furniture set up on the terrace and everything open.  What a lovely surprise.  We'll happily go there for future walks.  Unfortunately, I didn't get a photo of the sand hill cranes.

What is a Travel Blog With No Travel?

 I started this blog to keep in touch with the people I love "at home" when I joined the Peace Corps.  Then "at home" became Samoa, Malawi and Myanmar.  Then it morphed into just a journal for me.  A way to remember my travels, mostly.

Since March 22, 2020, I've been home. At first, staying safe at home, being very cautious.  Then, needed a new roof after a storm.  That led to interior/exterior paint, new windows, new carpet, new appliances and some other minor remodeling.  Most of the stuff I'd planned to do after the world cruise.  The windows were very much needed and a bonus that I paid for with some of the refund I got from the WC.

As others started going back to life as usual, I kept my old, fat self home, safe.  Then I went to the dentist to get a chipped tooth taken care of.  I chipped it in Brazil so it was past due.  But that dental visit led to a series of visits to the dentist, periodontist and endodontist.  All but one tooth issue will be resolved this week when I get three permanent crowns installed.  

As infections rates started to rise again and with no pandemic plan/cure in sight, I decided to get a dog.  Buddy, formerly known as Pesos, was found abandoned in Orlando.  The people who found him named him Pesos.  They contacted Pet Rescue by Judy in Sanford FL who took him in.  They got him medical care (including neuter and microchip) and put him with a foster family.  

On September 9, 2020, I met Buddy for ten minutes, paid for him and took him home.  The vet thinks he's a two year old Chug (Chihuahua/Pug mix).  Our first couple of weeks together were complicated a bit since I had cellulitis and a surface blood clot so walking was difficult.  

In the month since then, Buddy and I have been getting to be friends.  I'm going to be posting more again, but given the pandemic, the topic will most likely be my adventures with Buddy in Central Florida.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

World Cruise Update!

Thought the WC was done? Nope.

A huge issue when we got off the ship in Fremantle AUS was luggage. Since we were supposed to depart/arrive from Ft. Lauderdale a lot of people brought a lot of luggage. Imagine a four month cruise with casual, formal, tropics and Antarctica. Some bring their own bedding/food/glassware/liquor/wine, etc. I don't understand why you travel if you need to bring your own plants (yes, one lady down the hall had more houseplants in her cabin than I do in my house), bedding and food but that's just me.

So people freaked out. How do you get your 20 trunks/boxes home? I just dragged my 3 suitcases to the airport with me. Others left their luggage on the ship, which would head back to Ft. Lauderdale. But because of Covid-19, the Amsterdam has been stuck in Asia trying to disembark the crew, which they have, all but essential crew to operate the ship.

News finally came today unofficially that all luggage has been put on a cargo ship and that ship is scheduled to dock in Ft. Lauderdale on August 27. Which means, luggage should be available for passengers to pick up in mid-September.

The agreement Holland America made with passengers was that you could leave unlimited luggage on board at no fee. But only if you were a Florida resident and personally picked up the luggage in Fort Lauderdale. Given how 2020 has gone so far, I expect the luggage to arrive about the same time as a hurricane and the octogenarians picking up their stuff.

A lot of the passengers who cruise the majority of the year have "cruise clothes". I, just a regular person, just have clothes and would have been screwed without my luggage for six months.

All this talk about luggage reminded me of one of my favorite comedians, George Carlin. Here he is doing a bit about "stuff".