Have you taken swim lessons?

I managed to find an outdoor pool that is open. I have been working on my lap swimming after a long time away from the pool. Unfortunately, the pool is a public pool and one has to make reservations in order to use it at a certain time, and there is a limit to the number of people allowed in the area at one time.

I went one afternoon to find a family of four in the pool area. Two children in the pool and one parent on either side of the pool, supervising. I settled in a safe distance from all of them. I figured that if I was patient, I may be able to get my laps in.

Suddenly, one of the children announced that she was hungry. Yay! My opportunity! I hopped in and did my laps while the children were eating.

As I got out, the children’s mother asked me if I had taken swimming lessons. I said yes, of course. She told the children that she knew that would be my answer. I looked at her, puzzled. She said that she’s been trying to convince the children that there was a good reason to take lessons, and they were impressed by the evenness of my stroke and that I could go back and forth so easily. I was being used as an example.

As I was putting my swim stuff away, the woman said, “Oh! I should have known that you knew what you were doing. Anyone who has a case for her goggles must be serious about swimming.” I guess so. I use the case to keep my goggles from getting scratches. They are much easier to see through without scratches.

She also commented on my swim watch and earplugs. Well, if I am doing laps, they help. I didn’t use my swimcap this time, though. I guess I am looking for that green chlorinated look?

I am just happy to be back in the pool. I use hand sanitizer after using the rails to get out of the pool. Everyone uses those to get out.

Killing the Meetup Group

As some of the longer term readers know, I had a meetup group to encourage myself to get out of the house and meet people. We’d meet for coffee once a month and have happy hours occasionally and attempt to do touristy things every few weeks.

Only a few people showed up regularly, and I didn’t get to know very many in the group, but I would not say that the group was dying. When the shelter in place started, there was no point in meeting, because we had nowhere to go and it’s hard to drink coffee and wear a mask. No one seemed to want to meet by Zoom, so that was the end of that, it seemed.

I let it go for a while, since I had paid through June. Not one person answered messages. So, when the bill came last week for renewal, I sent a message to everyone in the group telling them that I would close the group and reopen it when things got to the point where we can meet in person again.

Only one person responded, and he had already moved away from the area months before we were sheltering in place.

When we are ready to meet again, I’ll reassess. Right now, it doesn’t make sense to pay for something I am not using.

What I forgot to pack

I went away for a weekend with the family. I live with them, so it’s not a big deal with the shelter in place orders. The place where we are has a pool, with strict rules of use. I go in and do my laps and get out. No dawdling. Wash down everything that was used.

Normally, I would sit down and read a book poolside. This trip, nope. Other than the rules not really allowing it without wearing a mask, I forgot my book!

I forgot my book! How could I do that? I do have my Kindle, but I don’t really want it out by the pool. I also have my textbook for my class, which is technically what I am supposed to be reading. It is rented though, so that doesn’t go out near water, either.

I am headed home to get back to work for a training for a couple of days. I’ll come back up after repacking. Hopefully this time I’ll remember the paper book. I am sure I’ll forget something else, though.

Sleeping difficulties

I have always been an awful sleeper. I need time to relax before sleep. Then, once I’m asleep, I only sleep for two or three hours and then I wake up because my bladder says so. Occasionally, I’m able to get back to sleep right away, but usually I’m awake for an hour or two before I doze off.

4 full sized pillows, back rest wedge , two decorative pillows, and a form fitting neck pillow now cover my bed, in an effort to make me more comfortable at night. Plus, I have my book seat which makes sure that my book or Kindle is comfy and at my fingertips in case I have insomnia, which is likely.

This usually works reasonably well, until I start fighting with the pillows. It seems that they manage to offend me in my sleep and I find them all over the room in the morning. One time, I woke up mid argument with them. Who says I don’t usually remember my dreams?

I do not take sleep meds because my bladder is usually what’s waking me up at night. I really don’t want to sleep through that. I’ll just continue arguing with my pillows and waking up to pee during the night. I’ll keep the Kindle handy.

Picking Up Stuff from School

When we suspected that school might be closing back in mid March, my daughter and I took most of our stuff out of the cubbies at school.  We left a few paintings behind, thinking that we’d be back in a few days.   We also had paintings on display in the student building.

Once we went to Zoom, we asked the instructor a few times about when we’d be able to get in and retrieve our belongings.  “The dean will contact you.”

During the final Zoom meeting, we were told that we’d be contacted during the first week of June to get the paintings that were on display in the student building.  What about the stuff that is in the cubbies?   No response.

Last night, June 26, we were FINALLY contacted about getting the paintings that had been on display.  No word about the stuff in the cubbies.   I scheduled my time and asked about getting ALL of our stuff.   “Yes.  But you have to sort it out yourself because I don’t have any idea what’s yours.”

Well, at least I have a day and time that I should be getting everything.  Finally.   Fingers crossed. 

I Am Not Buying Blueberries Anymore

Our refrigerator hates blueberries. It seems that no matter where we put the berries, they fall out when we take something else out. The container hits the floor and the berries roll away.

It doesn’t seem to matter who is opening the fridge or where we put the blueberries, they jump out and fall on the floor.

One day, coming back from a grocery store trip, a bag tipped over in the car. I waited until I got home and looked at what fell. Blueberries. Out of the container and all. I managed to pick them all up with minimal swearing. The family laughed because it always seems to be blueberries.

One recent event involved me taking stuff from the refrigerator and putting it in the freezer, which is a pull out drawer on the bottom. I pulled out the package of chicken thighs from the right side of the refrigerator to toss it into the open freezer drawer. Somehow it jostled the container of blueberries that were on the left side of the fridge and the container opened and sent blueberries into the freezer. They rested on the track for the drawer, so I couldn’t even ignore that they went in. I couldn’t pretend that I intended to make frozen blueberries.

I tried one more time. I bought a box at the grocery store. I got home and opened the car door. The groceries had shifted a little on the drive home. One bag fell out. One item fell out of that one bag. Blueberries. The box opened all over the street. Only the blueberries. Nothing else.

I am still screaming “I am not buying blueberries anymore!”

Dora the Explorer movie

After a week of homework was completed, I needed a little break from thinking. I decided to watch a movie that didn’t require a ton of thought. I chose the Dora the Explorer movie.

I found it very entertaining, but mostly because I had watched so many episodes with my children when they were small. It was definitely a parody and poked fun at the children’s show.

This was an example of how the journey was more fun than the ending. We pretty much knew how it was going to end before we even turned the movie on.

If you watched the original show and enjoyed it, you’ll definitely enjoy this movie.

Good deal on cheap wine

I passed through the wine aisle on a recent shopping trip. I happened to look across the aisle from where I usually get my wine and I saw that it was $4.99 a bottle. Good deal!

I looked closer and found that if I got four or more, I would get 10% off. This brought the wine to $4.50 a bottle. Woohoo!

One of the bottles had a tag on it, telling me that if I got twelve bottles, I could get a rebate of up to $24. Even better!

I got twelve bottles, held on to the receipt and the tag and tried hard to remember to send it in before the due date.

Today, I pulled out the info to mail it in. The type was so tiny, I couldn’t read it. I tossed it on the photo copier and enlarged it. I needed it large enough to read the mailing address. Got that, so I addressed the envelope. Then I started reading the instructions. Send original receipt with purchase price circled. Check! Fill out form on back of tag. Check! Address the envelope. Check! Send original UPC from each bottle’s label. Ummm. Ok. There’s a project.

In the instructions, it says to soak each bottle to remove the UPC carefully. Each bottle must be soaked in hot tap water for 10-15 minutes, and full bottles can’t be soaked. So, am I supposed to drink 12 bottles of wine by the due date on the rebate?

When I started investigating the removal of the UPC, I found that the label comes off rather easily. I quickly managed to get 6 labels off before I became bored. I counted the rest of the bottles and found that I had 11. I know there were 12 on the receipt.

I did a search for #12 and finally located it in the kitchen. I pulled its UPC off and stuck it in the envelope. I will finish up the last five tomorrow and pop it into the mailbox.

There were a lot of hoops to jump through on this one, but I think I have done everything they’ve asked of me. If any of you get a gift of a bottle of wine from me, ignore the missing UPC on the label. It was an expensive bottle. Trust me.

How Do You Get Stuck in a Water Bottle?

When I first started at my current job, years ago, we had a water dispenser that took 5 gallon bottles of water. We used to have to lug the bottles down the hallway, wipe down the bottles, take the plastic lid off, and lift and tip and drop the bottle onto the dispenser, hoping that we would not get ourselves, the wall, the floor, or anyone else wet. Most of the time, we ended up with wet shoes or shirts. This got a little easier when we switched to 3 gallon bottles, but the process was pretty much the same.

Fast forward several years. We got new dispensers that were supposedly spill proof. The new bottles were different. They were still a reasonable 3 gallon size, but now they had little tabs on the bottles that we pulled off and just dropped the bottle onto the dispenser. Much easier and no one washed themselves accidentally.

I had to figure this out. The next time it was time to change the water bottle, I pulled the bottle off the dispenser and looked into the dispenser. There was a pin, about the size of a finger, inside the dispenser. It must do something. I put the new bottle on. Oh, ok. The pin goes into the cap and stops the water from coming out. But what keeps the water inside the bottle when it’s upside down like that?

I took the empty water bottle and began investigating. There seemed to be a little dent in the middle of the cap. The pin must go there. There was a little piece of plastic inside the dent. I wondered how it kept the water in, so, of course, I put my finger in the dent to see how tight the seal was. It was not tight at all. It gave way immediately.

I was not expecting that little pressure, so I pushed harder than I should have. When the plastic piece gave way, my finger took up the space where it had been.

My finger was just the tiniest bit bigger than the plastic piece, so it didn’t come out easily. I lifted my hand to see if I could get my finger out but it was in there. Thankfully the water bottle was empty, so it was light. I wasn’t panicking, but thoughts went through my head. Would this be considered worker’s comp? Can I get up to the emergency room upstairs without drawing too much attention to myself? How am I going to explain this one at the emergency room?

I eventually got my finger unstuck just before my coworker came around the corner. She looked at where I was, the look on my face and the water bottle with the little piece of plastic in it. She asked me if I had been stuck. I admitted that I had been. She just shook her head and declared that only I could get myself in a situation like that and she walked away.

I am sure that I’m not the only one, but I’m usually the first one to admit that I do stuff like that.

Off the Wait List!

I got into the class I wanted/needed for the Summer 2020 session. It only took a little over a week to get there. There is a little under a week until class starts.

Because I am actually registered for the class, I decided to get prepared for class and start the reading. Well, it was a thought. The bookstore is closed to the public. You can only have books mailed to you or download the digital version. I decided to go for the digital version, thinking it would be faster. Nope.

I went in to register my books, and it says that I have no books available. Well, I purchased them and got a receipt. I emailed them and got no response yet. I gave up and phoned them. I was given instructions on how to do it, but it tells me I have no books. “Let me log in as you and I’ll show you.” So I gave my info. “Well, it’s not supposed to say that. I’ll have to have tech support look into it. It’s nothing you did wrong.” Well, that’s good news. I just hope they get it working soon so I can get ahead.

This is becoming more of an adventure than I thought.