Tag Archives: weather

It’s Changing

For quite some time I have wanted to live on one of the islands. In particular, Puerto Rico. It is something about the islands that fascinate me, draws me to them, fills me with wonderment and joy every time I visit them. The clean air. The blue waters. Wonderful people. Great weather. I just love the islands. Maybe, in another life, I lived on one of the islands. I don’t know. I really don’t know if I truly believe in transforming from another life. Maybe yes, maybe no. It just feels that way.

However, I have changed my mind about living on an island, even The Outer Banks. What changed my mind? Hurricane Dorian have made me change my mind. Last year, Puerto Rico was hit hard, and they are still trying to recover. They had a bad infrastructure before the storm hit them. Now the island government (they are a possession of the United States, therefore we are their federal government) can’t fight over whether to spend the money to repair the infrastructure or not. It will have to be done. Hurricane Dorian only gave them a glancing blow. They were lucky this time.

Hurricane Dorian literally destroyed Bahamas. That beautiful island is gone. Nothing standing. Parts washed away. People dead or still missing. It will take many years to rebuild the island and that is if they are not hit with another big storm. Then there is another problem for the island.

Bahamas depend on tourist money (cruise ships mostly) which account for most of the money. Next, talking about its economy, is banking. Everything for them to survive is blown and washed away. It will be years before tourists return or are able to arrive and spend money. I don’t know what they will do about the world-wide banking system they had. As I see it, the beautiful island, for now, is no more. When I was last there, it was wonderful, I didn’t want to leave. All I see on the television is total destruction.

I changed my mind about living on one of the islands because of that. With the weather changing and getting worst, it will happen again and again. Some people do not believe the weather is changing but I do. I vividly remember what the weather was like when I was a child and I have watched and felt the changes. The weather is much different now and is becoming harsher. You can’t fight Mother Nature nor change her, not even by dropping a bomb on her (may make her get mad and become worst plus spread radiation into the winds).

At least, on the mainland, I have a chance to get out of the storm’s way and only lose possessions and not my life. On an island, where can I go? Yes, I change my mind now because I didn’t think about bad storms before. I even watched bad storms hitting this mainland and people staying because they don’t want to leave their possessions. Possessions can be replaced, lives cannot. Other lives are in danger trying to save those that refuse to leave and need help to keep from dying.

The islands near the USA are not the only places that have big changes. There are typhoons that are getting larger than ever before and European winters colder than before. So, where can I go? I’ll stay here because I know the area and I can’t hide from Mother Nature especially if I am on an island. Plus, I would be stupid knowing what I now Know and knowing there is a climate change.

 

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I Am Irritated

I am irritated. I get mad. I get very defensive, causing my wife’s angst. Why? Idiots behind the wheel. I know I am not the only one that hate traffic jams, slow movement especially when I must be somewhere at a certain time. I usually give myself more time than I really need but sometimes it is not enough. I just deal with it and I don’t fret over it because I know I’ll eventually get there, later rather than sooner. However, there are people that don’t think the way I do. I can’t fault them for that, nor do I expect them to think like me.

What am I talking about? I can give you a picture because I can’t forget it nor let my guard down. Picture this. I am sitting in a traffic slowdown and there are three lanes of traffic. Counting left to right I am in lane one. To my left there is a small vehicle breakdown lane and a concrete barrier. I get this urge to look into my left sideview mirror and see a vehicle speeding down the breakdown strip to get ahead of other vehicles. I feel the urge to open my driver’s door, but I never do. Maybe I should one day.

Another is when there is heavy rain, fog or snow but many people never turn on their headlights. The vehicle code, for most states, require headlights when there is any type of inclement weather. Not only can the person see better, I can see them without being surprised when I suddenly see them. They are usually weaving in and out of traffic as well as being over the speed limit.

That brings me to speed limits. No, I am not the person that only drive the exact speed the law require. I (keep this between us) am usually ten to fifteen miles per hour over the speed limit, if it is safe to do so. At this speed, many things can happen. I look in my rearview mirror and see only the grillwork of another vehicle. I find a space in the other lane and move over. The idiot speeds pass and starts weaving from one lane of traffic to the other, moving ahead one vehicle at a time. I get to the traffic signal and the idiot is there. He didn’t get far.

Then there is the one thing that really get to me. I’ll be driving along on a two or three lane road when, without a warning or turn signal a vehicle jumps in front of me and I must apply my brakes to avoid a collision. Again, vehicle code (I believe driver’s tests also) require the use of the turn signal when changing lanes or turning. That is not hard to remember, and the use of the turn signal is easy.

I guess I’m easily agitated but, really, I am not. I only get agitated with the idiots out there driving like they are on a racetrack and traffic laws do not apply to them. They act as though everyone must get out of their way and others are invading their domain. Yes, I am irritated, mad and drive defensively. I must drive defensively because I want to save my vehicle and life.

Weather And The Elderly

Seldom a morning goes by, as I arise from my bed, that I wonder what the weather will bring today and what is the temperature at the moment. Sure, I know what the weather was yesterday, but what will it be today, is the forecast correct? The temperature in the house can deceive a person, give a false sense of weather awareness, which will make a person wonder if they will overdress or underdress. To the elderly, it can be a bad cold event or not.

The one thing that really make me feel cold is watching a person walk by wearing shorts, flip-flops, a bald head without a hat and a jacket on a breezy, chilly day. Maybe the person does not feel cold but why does the person wear a jacket if they don’t? I have seen this much too often, and every time I wonder why. Occasionally, I have seen this when there are snow flurries and a stiff breeze. Flu shot or not will not protect anyone from catching something under a nasty weather condition when disregard for properly dressing is in play. No, not catch, the ailment was invited by the way the person dressed, prepared for bad weather.

Elderly people need to be very careful because today immune systems, for some unknown reason, are very fragile which translate into a possible death sentence. I am a firm believer in the body healing itself. I will take a medication only when I have no other recourse, but I do not take over the counter medication unless I absolutely must do so to rid my body of something. However, that is a rare occasion. My immune system ward off many things and the things I do develop are very minor.

If you want to see young people cold or wet and cold but dressed for fun in a nightclub on a nice summer night, look outside a nightclub on a cold windy night. There will be many women barely dressed {men also), turning colors before your eyes yet saying it’s not cold. By putting on a fashion show at the expense of your health is not worth it. It may not be felt today but years down the road will reveal the harm caused during adolescence. Not only from how they were dressed but other ways the body was treated.

How an elderly person looks show what type of life they led and what the elements can do to the human body. Some of the body configurations of these people are not pretty. The dictionary of elderly ailments is all there in a room filled with a dozen or two of elderly people. Even those that spent large amounts of money to snip this, tuck that, shape this, tone that is in the same boat as the rest of us, sometimes worst.

It’s not good for a person when they are the same age as you are but look, act and speak ten years or older than you are. I have had a rough life and my body have been abused because of the work I did, and I really wasn’t careful how things affected my body. I feel it now but there isn’t anything that can be done now except to just live with it. I can not go back in time and redo the things that have been done to my body. However, I have corresponded with a few guys that were working beside me back in the day and just about all of them have the same ailments. They are also trying to care for their bodies, unlike today’s young people. They look into the mirror and most can tell their age.

Bottom line, take care of your body. Dress correctly for the weather that is and that’s coming. Don’t over do it because its’s the only body issued to you. Elderly people take a very long time to repair the body so be careful, make this New Year fruitful.

 

Relocating

 

 

I finally have relocated to Virginia Beach, about two hours from Richmond, a few yards from the beach. I returned to Imperial Plaza for the ROMEO (Retired Old Men Eating Out) monthly outing and we all had a really good time with good food. Laughing, joking and having a good time with my buddies made the day for me. It was a really good break from unpacking. My wife had a nail appointment at her usual nail salon after which she and her sister went out to eat. Who say seniors can’t have fun?

The thing about moving is finding things you forgot you have and taking more time than you have looking at pictures/items long forgotten but, my, my how memories return. There are several hard parts with one is finding your way around the new surroundings. Going through the streets watching the driving habits that are different from where you come from. There is also the joy of finding shortcuts that are not featured on GPS, avoiding the volume of traffic during the rush hours. In a few weeks I should be able to go where ever I desire without a thought, GPS or map. I remember being stationed in Europe; I would purposely drive around the larger cities, hopelessly lost, but not afraid. By the time my gasoline is getting low I would somewhat know the city. I would not know it like a local but I would know it. That is what I am trying to do, in time, here.

There is the myriad of empty boxes with a few more to go. Where to put it all is beyond me and I am wondering how we accrued all the things we are finding. The thrift stores will acquire quite a bit before we are finished with it all. I finally can move through this place without sliding side ways from one side of a room to the other. However, this bring on wonderful memories of my many military moves. Oh, well, the things I am really looking for must be in one of the boxes I haven’t emptied yet, I hope.

Another difficult part of relocating is getting used to new routines as well as meeting new people (it takes me awhile to remember a name). For some odd reason I find myself waking earlier than usual but on an odd day or two I do sleep late (blame it on the salt air, so refreshing). It is good during this time of year, however, when it gets dark earlier and sunrise later, I doubt I will be in to it as much. Then, being on the coast, with the water a hundred yards away, may be a problem if or when a hurricane arrive and the water floods the area. We’ll deal with that when the time come to deal with it. Until then, we’ll enjoy what is here.

Well, summer is here and it’s fun time. Many people prefer cold weather, winter snow, I don’t. I spent too many years in the military surrounded in cold weather and snow. Now that I am not required to do it, I will not. Have fun, stay safe and I’ll see you the later.

Think Of Others

I know that I have and others have matured and lived with the sense of being courteous and respectful to others as well as having a sense of cleanliness. Exactly what I mean, pacifically, as an example, are the elevators here. When I first moved here I could not bring my two dogs. As it was, one would have been too big anyway. The other would have been of the right size but I was a little too early coming to Imperial Plaza. My dogs would have been fine on the elevators but there are some people here that have problems.

Dog urine (sometimes it covers almost the entire floor area), dog feces (sometimes in the stairways) and other things, sometimes is left on the floors of the elevators and other places. Some people do not take the animals outside enough times or in a timely basis to ensure the animal does not do it’s business before it get outside. Then (it could be the same people), when the weather is bad, the people nor the animal want to go out into the weather. Therefore, the stairwells, parking garage and a few inches past the garage entrance get used.

It would not be a problem if the responsible adult would clean behind their animal but that is seldom done. I am hesitant to walk across the lawns, where I know some people walk their dogs, because a few times I have almost stepped in something. But, the elevators are another matter because we all have to use them, it’s difficult to not step in something, it stinks and I don’t want to clean-up behind a dog that I do not own.

There is still the problem of throwing cigarette butts on the ground. We have a beautiful, trash free area and then there are some people that do not care or believe others will pick it up for them. I smoke cigars and I put my butt where it is suppose to be placed although the all tobacco cigar will deteriorate in the weather. I do not do throw it anywhere because it takes time for the weather to remove the cigar and it looks bad before then. Why can’t others do the same?

Lastly, the dumpsters are still a problem. Not only is furniture (when people move out) left around the dumpster but there are cardboard boxes (not broken down) and garbage bags (not thrown into the dumpster) and just a total disregard to cleanliness. It just seem as if things are left anywhere with the thought that someone will move it and put it where it belong. Am I being overly critical?

I have no answers for any of these situations and, believe me, there is a lot more. I realize these people are elderly and many can not do a lot of things but there seem to be no consideration for anyone else. If the person can not do the proper thing for the animal (good or BAD weather) then why have the animal? The reason can not be because they love the animal or because they have had it for “x” number of years and it is a part of the family. If the animal can not be cared for properly because of your age or condition, then it should not be expected that others will do it for you. It should be remembered that the animal suffers also and can and will get the same diseases you and I will get.

I am frustrated and angry that this have come about. As I have said, I have no solution but maybe someone else have one, short of banning animals and smoking. If so, let me know and maybe I can carry it forward.

By the way, I am staying out of politics this week and will let the chips fall where they may. A lot have happened and a lot will. It’s not over yet. Have a good weekend!

My Chain Is Being Rattled

Imperial Plaza is a wonderful place but it seem to always start a controversy of some kind, all of the time. I don’t know why the place want to step in it because of one or two complaints, sooth the ruffled feathers and go on with life. Take care of the one small situation and go on with life without antagonizing the larger group. But no, the powers that be want to try to satisfy the one or two and rile the multitude. There are more important things to do than cause an uprising.

What am I talking about…at last month’s town hall meeting the director said smoking areas and regulations were to be changed. Nothing was said at this month’s town hall meeting but the grapevine is humming loudly and I have been approached by people wanting to know what I thought about it. I could not satisfactorily answer them because I don’t exactly know what is planned. But, I will give some of my thoughts here in this blog.

I am a smoker, I smoke cigars along with two others (that I am aware of), the rest smoke cigarettes. Us cigar smokers normally smoke in areas away from most people. I normally sit on a bench, out in the open, minding my own business. Occasionally someone will pass and comment but I say nothing. I’m outside on a bench, under a tree. What is the problem? Who am I hurting?

I see one area for cigarette smokers by one of the buildings that is next to someone’s window (this used to be an administrative office). That should change and I understand that but why mess with everyone else? Let me say it another way. Federal, state and local law say I can’t smoke inside. I can’t fight that. Us smokers have been moved outside, into the weather. Okay, at first there was a little fight and grumbling but over the years, people have settled into the groove left for us.

But, we have rights also. As long as it’s legal and as long as it’s sold by a legal operation, then it is not only legal but my right to participate in the activity if I so choose. I do not demand that someone chewing gum I don’t want to smell go out in the cold or rain or heat, etc. and chew their gum. Why should I? Am I being told that my rights are stripped from me because I smoke? Are the gum chewer’s rights stripped because they chew gum?

I can hardly wait to see what the new rule will be because I want to see where this smoking area will be or will I have to be off the property in order to smoke. That was never said before I signed a contract and it is not in my contract. I have five friends who are lawyers and I wonder what they have to say. I must ask them about my chances of winning if I brought litigation. I’ll just wait and see.

I remember, when I first moved to Imperial Plaza, pets were not allowed. Now they are and, although I was professionally a dog handler/trainer, I do not like having pets here. I have three reasons for saying this and it applies to about seventy five percent of the dog and cat owners. First, the dogs do not get enough exercise (jumping, running, playing, stretching those muscles, etc.). Second, some people don’t pickup after their animals, especially if the weather is bad outside. Third, quite a few people can hardly walk and they try to walk the animal out into the grass without falling, etc. Then, add to the slowness, the lack of exercise because the animal is on a leash and can only move as fast as the person at the other end of the leash.

I’ve stepped in dog feces and have seen it along the sides of building, in the stairwell and smelled it in the hallways and laundry rooms. Yet, concentration is on smokers. Maybe I have to move again. I’ve heard rumors of that also but never considered it until now. I like this place and I don’t mind paying for the convenience and comfort this place bring. However, a war is brewing and, unfortunately, I may be either right in front of it or in the middle. All I ever wanted was to live in peace but that seem to be a false hope. Oh well, if I must I must.

Comings and Goings

I want to welcome Ron back to Activities. It is so good to have him back especially to lead ROMEO on it’s monthly excursions to different restaurants. Yes, ROMEO is back to its original form (the pen is mightier than the sword) . Now Activities can get back to his norm and on it’s luxurious way. Again, welcome back Ron.

As I have said before, it is so nice to be retired and to be able to go to places without worry of having to do this or that to your house. My wife and I went to our favorite casino places, Maryland live, Horseshoe and MGM casinos. We spent three days and two nights away without a care in the world. Who says you can’t do things when you are retired? That is what retirement is for, to do what you want to do when you want to do it. The only reason that we came back so soon was because we had another engagement Saturday evening, where I ran into a guy I used to work with more than twenty years ago. Again, good food, music and lots of fun.

Last Tuesday, as it is every Tuesday, the White Squirrel have it’s live music along with good food and fun. The Thunderbirds, who plays every other Tuesday, were really great in the music playing and selection. The White Squirrel have a new menu and the food was really good. I am glad to see the upgrade in the food because, for a while, the food was going downhill. I talked with James, the assistant manager of the dining facilities, who is back and he seem to be doing well. He is still crazy and it was really great to see him running around acting crazy with everyone.

Now that warm weather will soon be here, it is time to get my bicycle, and other things, ready for good weather so that I can go outside and get some pleasant exercise done. Being cooped up all winter have really gotten me out of shape, as if I was in good shape to start with. LOL Being in the age group that I am in, doesn’t take much to get me out of shape. Keeping myself active and not sitting around doing nothing should keep me healthy and vibrant ( I hope). Of course going to the casinos, like we do, and all the other things, doesn’t leave much room to cram in the exercising. I really don’t like going down into the gym and going through the exercise routines that a trainer would give. Good shows on TV does not help the situation any either (smile). I will keep trudging along and doing the best I can to stay in shape so that my wife and I can continue to go to the casinos.

Really, there’s not much to put in to today’s blog. I am just looking forward to the warm weather and the upcoming activities from the Activity Department here at the Imperial Plaza. The Activity Department have the cherry blossom/boat ride coming up as well as other exciting outings. I don’t know how many I will be able to go on because I know that some will clash with my schedule. But, of course, I cannot miss ROMEO. So I say to all, get out there and be active. Maybe I’ll see you somewhere along the way.