Posts Tagged ‘murphys law’

Over the past few days the night sky has been dominated by a large full moon. In between storms here on the west coast of the United States, this gorgeous orb has been clearly visible as the stars begin to come out and dark overtakes the day. As much as I appreciate the glorious views, a full moon brings with it tidal changes, mood disruptions, and a myriad of other gravitational anomalies that are a bit offputting. People are known to sleep walk more during a full moon, exhibit more aggressive behavior, suffer from depressive episodes, and many other behavior changes. I know I always feel a bit overwhelmed when the moon is in full glory, and this weekend was certainly no exception.

To add to the mix, yesterday was the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year. Often this effects your ability to sleep, and has people contemplating the year behind them and pondering what lies in store for them in the new year. Then, if the stew wasn’t already bubbling over, it is a retrograde. This means the planets are lined up in such a way as to cause you to slow down and reflect on your life. Good grief, Charlie Brown. That’s a lot to chew on for one bite of the apple. I’m just sayin.

With this kind of massive energy directed our way, appliances often stop working, computers or electronic devices get hiccups, things with working parts malfunction, as do people caught in the middle of it all. Basically, it’s a hot mess. My refrigerator went last week, and the new one happily is in and running as we speak. Yesterday, I got up and was reminded by my calendar to get moving in order to make an early hair appointment. This was to be my first time with this hairdresser, and I was hopeful she would turn out to be a successful change from the one I am currently seeing. I like the woman who is doing my hair at the moment, but she is an hours drive from me, in an area where it snows. With gas over $5/gallon, and no four wheel drive anymore, I would much prefer to go closer to home. I don’t know how it is for men, but for ladies, finding a good hairdresser is like discovering an original Monet hidden under your recent garage sale purchase of a framed picture of a bowl of fruit.

It has been really cold (for California) this week, so I bundled up and ran out to get my car warmed up. Inserting the key in the slot, the dashboard lit up like I’d just hit the penny slot machine in Reno. Oh-oh. After considerable coaxing, the engine turned over and started. However, an icon of an engine remained on the display. Drat the luck. At least I was going close to home.

Arriving at the salon, after introducing myself, I explained the situation with my car saying I might have to call a tow truck should I not be able to start it again. She said I could wait in the lobby as long as I needed. Yay. Luck being on my side (not always the case if you’ve read my blogs for any length of time) she did a great job, and…….she was considerably less expensive. Stop it, I know! I approached my car with caution, depressing the open button on my remote. Thankfully, the lights went on indicating there was some juice left. I hopped in and drove quickly back to the house. Going out later to try it again, it wouldn’t start. Everyone I know in the immediate area is out of town for the holiday week. My kids were at work, and the only neighbor I’m familiar enough to ask for a lift was visiting her kids. Ach. These are the times when I realize I am on my own and pretty much responsible for my own behind. My knight in shining armor is no longer here to rescue me from the castle tower, and I’d better figure out what to do about the situation. Had Dale been here, he would have looked under the hood or known who to call. I contacted my son-in-law at work. He said to go to the auto parts store and have them check the battery. Good idea in theory, but if the car won’t start, definitely this plan has some execution issues. Sooooo, I called my insurance company emergency road service and requested a tow. I have only used this feature one other time since having this insurance, but I am paying for it so decided it was the best option. Rocking some girl power at that point, I called the auto repair shop Dale used and told them my car was stopping by for a check up.

The automated system at the ERS began sending a series of texts, the first saying the tow driver would be arriving within the hour. This was followed by repeated texts saying he was on track over the next 60 minutes. After the hour came and went, I called the number provided to contact the tow company directly to ask when someone might arrive. According to the owner, the driver was eating his lunch. Really? Now, I don’t begrudge the poor man his lunch, and I was toasty and warm inside my house, but I guarantee had I been left sitting on a curb in forty degree weather somewhere, I might definitely have been a little out of sorts. Finally, two hours and counting, the massive truck pulled up out front. It looked more like it should be carrying a tank than my little mid size sedan. The man knocking on the door was oversized to match his vehicle. He looked a bit like the Incredible Hulk. Seriously, one of his arms was the size of my torso. Wow. At any rate, he asked for the keys to maneuver the car and get it loaded. Okie. I watched as my car was pulled onto the aircraft carrier sized ramp and secured. My heart felt sad. All my pre-Christmas plans for the day would have to be put on hold. Murphy strikes again. Had to be on a holiday week didn’t it Murphy? Couldn’t wait until the new year? He pulled out onto the street, made a u-turn and left. Hello? I hadn’t given him any form of payment and hoped he knew where the car was to be dropped off. In a bit I called the auto shop and sure enough my car had arrived. A bonus. For all I knew it could have been headed down 101 towards Mexico. I need to get better at this. About twenty minutes later the tow truck driver called. He apologized for just leaving, he thought I’d already paid. A well oiled machine that group. Should have told him I was enjoying a BLT and I’d get back to him. Sigh. After paying out a substantial load for the service, I came in and signed up with Triple A. Been meaning to anyhow, and need to get more efficient at managing myself. Good and good. Next I signed up with Uber so I could pick up the car once it was fixed. Looking sharp over here.

So, hopefully I will be going to my daughter’s on Friday as planned in my own car. I have my fingers and toes crossed and have issued mental orders to keep Murphy off the property should he attempt to come in the front door.

On another subject entirely, night before last I fell in the middle of the night. Embarrassing that. I got up to make my usual nocturnal visit to the loo. Apparently, I wasn’t fully awake yet and lost my balance making the poor choice to grab for the half open closet door for support. The door slid open all the way depositing me on my behind in the back of the closet amongst my collection of winter boots. I managed to escape serious injury, ending up with only a bump on my elbow and a rather colorful bruise. The sad thing about it was before going to bed, I had pulled on a shirt my daughter gave me years ago. It is furry and has what looks like an indomitable snowman on the front, also furry. Seriously a fashion nightmare, but what it lacks in glamour, it makes up for in cuddly warmth. As it is just the cat and I, I really wasn’t concerned about whether I made the best dressed list before retiring. Once I assessed the damage and seemed okay, I found myself thankful for that and I hadn’t suffered something more dire and been found dressed like that. That would have been my legacy. Perhaps I will have to rethink my sleeping attire in the future.

Have a safe and festive Wednesday. Keep your wits about you, there is enough unsettled energy floating around for all of us.

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Have to say I am totally spent. In a long week, Monday was by far the longest day. For nine hours I sat in one hard chair or another in the ER with my dear friend who they suspect has cancer. With COVID filling in all the cracks for the last year and a half, everything is moving forward in slow motion, so what normally takes an hour in that section of the hospital might take two if you factor in the COVID restrictions. What a miserable disease cancer is. I watched Rick valiantly battle it and now here it is knocking on my front door again. Seems I know a lot of people dealing with this diagnosis or someone in their family having cancer of one type or another at the moment. Someone told me the other day this is the universe or our higher power, or whatever you believe, culling the herd. When we get too large in number we must be thinned out for others to survive. Couldn’t this be done by just putting us to sleep? Never can understand why we have to suffer. Guess in the scheme of things we’re not supposed to know, since no one has come back to fill us in on the secrets of the afterlife up to this juncture.

Anyhow, that subject is a deep well I don’t want to drop my bucket in at the moment. I hold close to my heart a statement made to me by a grief counselor right after Rick passed away. She said simply, “It doesn’t seem like it now, but a year from today life will be much different.” When you’re in pain it doesn’t seem as if it will ever ease up, but life has a way of moving forward and whisking you up in it’s wake whether you feel like going or not.

With nine hours spent in it’s bowels, I found the ER an interesting place to be. Aside from the obvious gravity of the visit hanging over us, there were times when I found it fascinating to watch what was going on around me. They allow one visitor in, now that our county has opened up, and I was the one plus one. At first we sat in a room together, which was nice. About five hours into our stay, they were debating whether or not to send Dale home, or to keep him overnight. As it is always preferable to have a patient exist outside of the hospital rather than in, they finally opted to send him home but with oxygen. Ten days in a hospital bed in older people can equal about ten years of muscle loss, not to mention the obvious germ fest going on inside a hospital ward they are susceptible to while lying there.

At one point the EMT’s brought in a highly agitated man. Two police officers accompanied him and if the red stain on the bandage wrapped around his head was any indication, he hadn’t come in willingly. Nurses and hospital staff were trying to calm the screaming man down but finally had to resort to tougher measures to get him under control. Like a drunken sailor he was throwing expletives about like towels in a clothes dryer. Not that I haven’t heard, or even used, the particular crowd favorites he was spewing, but have to say I’ve never heard them used in a hospital setting before and with so many of them strung together. A cloth bag was finally pulled over the man’s head because he had begun to spit at his perceived captors. Another quiet day at the office for the ER staff I’m sure. Seems people are building up excessive heads of steam all over the place. Flight attendants are being attacked, people on the street walking along minding their own business. Odd time in our history.

A nurse came in to tell us she would have to move Dale into the hallway to provide a private area for the inebriated swear monger. We were done with the doctors, and waiting for the oxygen to arrive so didn’t really require an examination room. Because of the COVID restrictions, I couldn’t sit in the hallway. I was told I would have to wait in the lobby. K. Now, this was not my first rodeo. I have spent a good deal of time over the past decade sitting in ER waiting rooms. Before leaving the house, I tucked my phone charger, a book, a bottle of water, and a small snack in my purse. Girl scouts have nothing on me when it comes to being prepared.

It was Memorial Day, so the usual holidays specials moved in and out of the lobby while I sat there. A teen who sprained his wrist while playing baseball, an older man with a bad burn from a barbecue gone bad, etc. I squirmed about in the incredibly uncomfortable chair for a while until a text came in from Dale saying the oxygen rep on his way with the tanks was stuck in traffic for at least another hour and a half. Hearing that, I stood up and my back decided I needed to walk around the hospital a bit before it was willing to stop twitching about. Outside would have been preferable, as I’m not fond of hospitals on the best of days, but it was 100+ plus out there and I knew there was already a full boat of patients inside. Should I face plant in the parking lot, I most probably would lie there until I fuse with the asphalt.

The hospital corridors were all but deserted, not unexpected on a holiday. The cafeteria was closed to the public because of the virus, and there were no vending machines to be found. My stomach was telling me it was time for something more satisfying than Saltines and string cheese. I wandered toward the main entrance and exited into the lobby when lights began to flash and emergency sequences began coming in over the PA system. Oh-oh. For a moment I thought I’d set them off, which wouldn’t be unexpected in my life. The doors shut in front of me and behind me and I was stuck in the corridor, like the cream filling in an Oreo. For an old claustrophobic like me, this triggered an immediate flight or fight response which fortunately I got a hold of prior to resorting to crashing through the windows before they announced it was a drill and the doors reopened. Whew.

The beleaguered oxygen man finally showed up shortly after six. We had checked in at 8:15 in the morning so to say it was a long day would be somewhat of an understatement. By the time we got home and went through the home instructions on the equipment he brought to the house, I could feel the urge to start running and not look back. I held my feet in place and listened to what the man was saying. Truly it was hard to believe I was experiencing this whole scenario again. I had to pinch myself to make sure I was fully in reality. Oxygen is tricky. There is definitely a learning curve involved until you get it running smoothly. Rick had been on it for the last two months of his life.

According to my metaphysical friend we are once again in a mercury retrograde when everything that could go wrong will. Oh joy. On Tuesday following my day in the ER, I had a hair appointment early in the morning. I have gone back to my old hair dresser. It’s a longer drive, forty-five minutes, but she seems to be the only one in the area who understands how to color my hair. If I say I would like my hair blonde with warm undertones that is exactly what I mean. There is no red, merlot, or auburn in that statement anywhere. Thank you, thank you very much. Feeling like I’d been rode hard and put up wet, I dragged myself to the car and drove all the way up the hill to my appointment (ignoring beauty is never an option) only to be told by the receptionist at the salon my appointment was for the following day. Sigh. My first urge was to scale the counter and dust the floor with the little girl seated behind it with the toothy grin, but I controlled my primal urges and just said “Thank you. I’ll see you tomorrow.” Jeez Louise.

I stopped to pick up Dale’s prescriptions on the way home only to be told they had filled them at their store in the town I had just been in for my wrong day hair appointment so they had to be redirected down here. This would not happen until later in the day. Fine. On the way out of the pharmacy I stopped to look at a large display of patio umbrellas. There was one in the middle I specifically wanted to see so I pulled it out to get a better look at it. Removing that one umbrella apparently threw the entire display stand off balance. The whole large unit leaned precariously to one side and then crashed on the tile strewing the umbrellas all over the place like pick up stix. The gentleman standing next to me asked if he could help me pick them up. I told him, “Save yourself. You don’t want to get too close to me you might spontaneously ignite.” Clean up on Aisle 4. Never mind. Never mind it all. I am still smiling. See? I remind myself today I am a warrior and a survivor. I’ve come this far and I will continue along in my journey until I have no further to go.

I came home and decided to ease my pain by doing something cathartic. Sewing always takes my mind off of things. I needed to make a pillow for a new patio chair I’d purchased, so that was the plan. I cut out the fabric, threaded the machine, pushed down and the pedal and bupkis. Really? I tried again and the light went out. Exit stage left.

Sometimes you simply can’t fight the current. Your only option is to point your feet down stream and keep your eyes open for rocks.

Make it a rock free day. Almost Friday.

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