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» Saturday, October 19, 2019Rained Out and Flying In
We had a broken-up weekend this week. James' dermatologist isn't in the office on Thursdays or Fridays, so he had to go for his quarterly inspection (since the two basal-cell skin cancer procedures he had in the spring) on Wednesday. So he was off Wednesday and worked Thursday.
His appointment wasn't until afternoon, so I did half the laundry in the morning and also cleaned up some in the dining room; we had two food gifts from Christmas in baskets that were still sitting on top of Tucker's box, so I put the items in the pantry closet and will recycle the baskets. We saw the doctor (all clear, but she is glad James is going to the wound clinic next week), then came home by Publix to do the majority of the shopping. We were cheered by the chatty bagger who helped us out with our groceries and returned the electric cart for us, and recommended Patak's to her for meat. (We were having sausage for dinner, so will need to go back there at some point. Besides, I want more mortadella.)
So James went off to work on Thursday and I was fairly busy with going to Hobby Lobby for a sewing item I needed (also found a cute toy for Toys for Tots) and then picking up some groceries at Lidl. I had filled up one trash bag for Friday morning pickup and had collected the rest of the house trash; was spoiling to find something else to get rid of. I found it on top of the refrigerator after preparing some snack bags of nuts for James when he goes to work (we keep the food scale up there). I discovered a bunch of bottles we don't use anymore there, on their sides, and tossed them all out. All I kept was the one carton holder because they don't make those things anymore (we actually have four now, up in that useless cupboard that's over the fridge; I can only get them out using the "grabby thing"). We rarely buy anything liquid in a carton, but should we want orange juice or eggnog we have them up there. Now all that's up there is a filtered pitcher, the scale, a gravy separator, the big spool of string, and, on a lazy Susan, the unopened jars of finishing sauces. I put the wooden pumpkin that used to be on my desk at work in the fall up there as a decoration.
The trash bag still wasn't full, so I went into the garage and tossed out empty containers, old items we aren't going to use anymore, bags, etc. until it was stuffed to the gills. I was lucky and found some empty cassette cases. I have Christmas cassettes with broken cases, so this will help!
Friday we were back to the usual schedule; this weekend we had to go to Costco, as James needed mandarin orange cups for his morning drink and "plastic cheese" (the Kraft kind) for sandwiches; we also got toilet paper. Discovered Costco is just as crowded on Friday at eleven as it is on Saturday morning! We got back just in time to head out to West Cobb Diner for lunch with Alice and Ken. Following that, we visited the Barnes & Noble at Dallas Highway (a book I wanted was on sale, so James bought it for me for my birthday; I found two more nice things from the clearance table for Toys for Tots, too), and then stopped at Kroger for the BOGO pork chops and sale sugar-free cookies. On the way home we had a real treat: ice cream at Baskin-Robbins. Hadn't had one of those for months!
Normally we would have been in bed early last night to get up at 6:30 so we could make it to Ellijay and the Georgia Apple Festival by nine when they opened. Instead some stinky tropical storm formed in the Gulf of Mexico a few days back, spreading a band of rain so far that even 324 miles from the Pensacola landfall we were still going to get rain and so was Ellijay. Never mind that James isn't supposed to take the power chair out in the rain, the close parking for the Apple Festival is in a big grassy field that turns into a big grassy swamp when it's wet. We have been there in previous years where it rained the day before and vehicles still got stuck in the mud. But rain and the chair made this insurmountable: even if James covered up the controller with a plastic bag we still remember the last time we went there the day after it rained; we had to keep getting help from strong people because his power chair got bogged down four or five times in soft grass and mud. (So even if we were able to go tomorrow getting around would be problematic.) We haven't missed an apple festival in years, only once because we were on vacation, and we were hoping Smack Yo Mama barbecue and Meadowcroft Farms would be there, because we missed them at Yellow Daisy. (Just looked at the vendor list; we apparently did miss the former, but the latter isn't on the list. Maybe Smack Yo Mama will be at the Jonquil Festival next weekend.) And I was so looking forward to the apples we would buy afterward—we always crunch on a nice big sour one on the way home! (Of course James says we can just go up there some day next week or the week after and stop at Panorama Orchards as always for fresh apples and jam and pot pie noodles.)
So it looked like it was going to be a gray, bleak, and boring day, except Dish (of all people) offered us a diversion. A few days ago we got an e-mail saying they were sending us one of their newfangled voice remotes free. We got it on Friday and I set it up and of course started to play with it, just naming series for the Google Assistant to find. One of the best things I found was that the last six episodes of this season of Elementary, the last few episodes of the very final season, the ones that I missed because of Dish's stupid dust-up with CBS, were just about to air on WGN, so I was able to set them up to record. I also found out that one of our favorite series, Flying Wild Alaska, was still available on Discovery on Demand (except for one episode; don't know why), so we've been watching it all afternoon.
This, of course, as always with us and electronics, was not without its hiccups. We successfully found and started episode 1. Ten minutes in, the video faltered, dropped out, and the Dish Hopper said it no longer had internet access. Well, it didn't—the router had gone off. When it came back up, it had so little signal that it wouldn't reconnect. So I rebooted the router, it came back up, dropped out, then came back up again. When I measured the speed on Speakeasy, it said we had a great signal, but SpeedOfMe said we didn't. Odd because they usually agree. Then I had to reconnect the Hopper with the router. The Hopper didn't even see any wifi signals! I had to reboot it, then set up the wifi again, and finally we could sit and watch. I'd forgotten how cute Ariel Tweto was. Always loved in the first episode how she admitted she didn't like the cold and was "the world's worst Eskimo." I also remember how I loved the Native American music they played in the background and that we heard on the radio station. Some of it is traditional music, and some of it is rock or pop sung in the local language.
James made pork chops for dinner, and we continued watching Flying Wild Alaska until it was time for the ten o'clock news.This batch of episodes included my favorite, where Jim goes off to deliver supplies to a hunting camp. He usually checks in with the base when he gets there and before he leaves, so they know he's okay and where to look if they don't hear from him. This time he starts chatting with the hunters and forgets. When he gets in, Ferno [his wife] strides out there and asks "Is your radio out?" He lamely tries to explain that he got busy and forgot, and then had to figure out how to take off again because of the way the water covered the landing strip, etc, but Ferno stares him down and says, "No call, no hugs, no dinner," and walks back inside. I love it! Guys don't understand. They're just bullshitting with the other guys, but we think they're dead in a ditch somewhere if they don't show up on time!