The Big Day

     It was 56 years and today when I entered the world. Obviously, I don’t remember that exact day, but the fact that I was born on my Dad’s birthday has always been special to me. 

I have never been a person who celebrates birthdays with over-the-top parties. Historically, my birthday has always been a quiet event for family and a few friends. As my family has dwindled through the years due to geographic separation and emotional indifference, friends became more important. At least that was how I felt until those times and people began to deteriorate as well. The reciprocal buying of gifts always turned into a question of who spent more on their gift, them for my birthday, or me for theirs.

With Hal (person) I have enjoyed a quiet day with lunch at Golden Corral and then some errands to spend time together for the rest of the day and evening. Gifts were given but I am glad that Hal didn’t spend a ridiculous amount on me. Personally, I believe that my birthday is just as much about showing how much I care about those close to me as it is about them making a fuss over me.

56 years ago today, I came into the world. I am still here and doing just fine.

Chaos

I’m sure that I am not the only person in the world who feels a sense of chaos when thinking about the future. Have I planned well enough for retirement? Have I made any critical mistakes that will impact my future?

Chaos is always lurking around the corner. It is as close as we allow it to be, and its influence is proportional to how much attention we give it. Chaos feeds off our fears, it grows stronger as uncertainty grows.

Chaos is the by-product of modern life. With all of the distractions, we lose track of the small things and allow ourselves to be manipulated every day. When we try to take control back, we realize how much we gave up in the first place. This is chaos.

What I Wanted To Be As A Child Growing Up

Growing up,  I wanted to be a professional baseball player because I thought that I was really good at the game. I loved being outdoors and enjoying the warm weather and sunshine. I was a decent pitcher and an average hitter.

As I got older, I realized that other kids were growing stronger and faster than I was. I played through high school and never hit a home run. I was a contact hitter but that made me absolutely mediocre compared to guys that were able to crush the ball. That marked the end of my aspirations to be a professional baseball player.

I thought seriously about becoming a fireman because one of my best friend’s father was a fireman. The normal childhood dreams of riding around town in the big red fire truck were intoxicating. I know that this was a dream of many of the kids I grew up with in a small town. Ironically it was a fire at our house that stopped the desire to be a fireman after seeing all the damage and thinking that I wasn’t cut out to be dealing with that type of stuff on a regular basis.

Because I was born in the 1960s I thought about becoming an astronaut. Once again it was a generational thing that appealed to everyone my age. The intense math and science brought me back to reality and ended that dream.

I thought about becoming an actor for a time. I always enjoyed being the center of attention and I was never shy. My parents weren’t keen on the idea because they wanted me to live in the real world as much as possible. The other thing that killed the desire to act was I never thought of myself as attractive, and I still believe that all cameras are out to embarrass me at all times.

I wanted to be a teacher because I really loved to learn and to share with others. It was later in life when I decided that I wasn’t really cut out to be around children all of the time. I was raised by very progressive parents and was always considered mature for my age. I had a wonderful childhood, but it was not as carefree as some of my friends. I was always taught to think of others and the world around me rather than always just myself. Later in life, I found that teaching adults is something that I am rather goods at.

Now I work with data mining and analysis. I pull patterns and predict future behavior of information for the client. I measure changes and trends. I model data to demonstrate to the client where they should focus their efforts to improve their productivity and responsiveness. I do have the opportunity to train/teach others on my job, and it gives me tremendous pleasure to do so. This is not where I would have predicted that I would end up, but I find that very few people actually do end up in their dream job that they visualized when they were children.

Life is about adapting to change and making the best decisions that you can each and every day. Make the best of what life throws at you and remember that nothing is preordained.

A New Writing Tool

I was rummaging through my desk drawer when I came across a book that I had forgotten buying almost a year ago. I bought the book to help with my writing and then promptly forgot all about the book. I decided to pull the book out of the drawer and take another look at it. 

The book is titled “Choose Your Own Journal” and it is a guide to daily blogging/journaling. It is divided into sections such as “Spiritual Journey”, or “Achievement Journey”. The book allows the user to select any entry to comment on and then provides a guide to the next subject in that particular journey. Actually, this is a really interesting way to guide me through the list of topics.

I remembered why I bought the book in the first place, to help my writing. It is past time to start using this book again to guide me with topics to write about each day. The journey begins.

Dreamer’s World September 21, 2018 – The End Of A Long And Trying Week

I am glad that Friday is here at last. I was off work the previous two days, but it wasn’t for anything fun. I had an electrical problem with the Lime Green Fiesta that had to be repaired before things got worse. Whenever I was driving, I got the warning light that one of the doors was open. It was never open. The alarm went off steadily and caused the dome light to go on and stay on. The dome light caught the attention of a local police officer on Monday night because you are never supposed to drive after dark with your dome light on. Thankfully, I was just given the warning to get it fixed.

I took the day off on Wednesday and went to the Ford dealer where I purchased the Lime Green Fiesta because there is a service plan with discounts that come in handy. The dealer is about 25 miles away from where we live, so this meant a trip to sit there and wait for the repairs to get done. After several hours, the techs came and said that they could find nothing wrong (of course) and that I should monitor the situation and bring it back if necessary. I was not satisfied with this, but I started to drive away, and the sensor started acting up again.

When the techs saw that the light was on as I had told them, the Lime Green Fiesta went back into the shop for another few hours. Eventually, I was told that the problem could not be identified without more detailed inspection and that I would have to leave the vehicle overnight.

This new development meant that Hal and I had to take the courtesy shuttle to the nearest Metro station, then catch the series of trains that would get us the closest to home, and then take the bus for another hour to get back home. After that adventurous trip, I was prepared to work Thursday as usual while waiting on word about the Lime Green Fiesta. Just before 1700, I got the call that they had finally found that there was a wire in the Lime Green Fiesta that had shorted out and was the cause of the door sensor alarm. The techs were able to repair the problem without much trouble (of course), and that I could pick up the Lime Green Fiesta on Thursday.

This news meant that I had to schedule another day off work to travel back to the dealer in the morning using the same long Metro commute. I was not going to accept the Lime Green Fiesta without a test drive to make sure that the problem was resolved. Thankfully, the issue did not happen again and apparently the problem has been fixed. Then I had to face the cost of the repair. No parts were charged, but because of the time and labor involved with removing the door panel and finally identifying the cause of the problem (testing each wire individually), I was out quite a bit of money.

At least the Lime Green Fiesta is running smoothly once again without the alarm constantly going off. For that I am grateful. Now I hope that there will be no more unexpected expenses for a long time, and I hope that I can relax and enjoy the weekend.

Dreamer’s World January 3, 2018 – Living Every Moment

00002IMG_00002_BURST20180103050914

     Being happy is something that everyone wants in their life. Sadly, this is impossible because life doesn’t work that way. We all go through highs and lows, and we have to remember that this is all a part of the journey. If everything were perfect all of the time, we would have nothing to indicate that we are happy at any given point in our life.

     As insomnia keeps me awake, I think about this. There is nothing pleasant about not being able to sleep, but it can lead to some useful time for thinking if I let it. I know that there are things that demand my attention as I try to sleep. Writing is one of those things, and I am allowing it to occupy my mind in the middle of the night as the rest of the world sensibly sleeps.

     I wish at times like this that I could not have insomnia, but that isn’t my choice. I have to deal with this in the best way that I can. At least I know that I will not be traveling to the client’s office later this morning because it is just too damn cold to stand around waiting on a bus just to get me to a train station where I have to stand around waiting for a train. The first thing I will do when I start work this morning is to notify the client that I am not coming in today but that I will be available via phone or email if they need to reach me.

     As a part of the things I will do while I am awake, I am writing this blog post in Google Docs for a change. I want to have some different experiences to stimulate my mind as I cannot sleep.

 

 

Dreamer’s World May 24 2017 – Making Progress

    The middle of the week is here at last. I just returned from my weekly meeting with the client and now I have the afternoon meetings and normal work to get through before quitting time this afternoon. I am glad to report that I feel much better today after a good night of sleep.

    Yesterday I went to the acupuncturist for the first time and I must admit that I feel tremendously better. She believes that she can help me with my occasional insomnia and lack of quality sleep and I am perfectly willing to give her the opportunity to help if she can. I believe that she inserted approximately 20 needles into me during the session and some of those were connected to an electric pulse that helped to relax some of the trouble spots. Acupuncture, like reflexology, works on points in the body that correspond to areas of concern. For every part of the body, there is a spot along the spine for the most part that corresponds to it. She helped me to get some real sleep last night. Since this was my first visit to her, she is going to chart out what she found and then we will meet again next week to see about a recommended course of treatments and negotiate a price that I can live with.

    After work this afternoon, I will be marinating some steaks to cook so we will have some good meals for the rest of this week. I enjoy cooking in the new kitchen because the appliances are up to date and there is more room to move around, especially with a hot oven in use. I don’t expect that we will do anything after work other than me cooking, but Hal will always have a say in the decision. Personally, I want to cook because it does save money in the long run and we can have what we want already made here. I spent most of my lunchtime preparing the marinate and getting the steaks in do they will be ready immediately after work. With the new oven, it won’t take long for them to be ready and we can still do something if Hal wants to.

    I am looking forward to the end of the workday. I want to get a routine established now that all of the chaos of the move is over with. I need some stability and order right now so I can get back to practicing my guitar and having time for myself. I am starting the oven now so it will be ready for the steaks as soon as work is finished. Hal is taking a nap now so I don’t know what that will mean for later on, but I will be ready regardless.

    The steaks are in the oven now. Hal is on the phone with his relatives since an Aunt of his died yesterday in Florida. He told me that the family has offered to pay for him to go to Jacksonville for the funeral this weekend and I suspect that he will go. In fact, he is on the phone with one of his relatives now so I won’t bother him until he is finished. That can be tricky because he can spend hours on the phone with them. My situation is less complicated and consists of “Are you dead yet?” “Better luck next time” types of conversations. I have a weird family that isn’t close at all, at least to me. I have managed to survive for this long without constant aggravation from them and I will continue to do so in the future.

    At least the steaks will be ready for either dinner tonight or for meals starting tomorrow. It feels good to get ahead of things for a change. I took a few minutes to change the appearance of my WordPress blog because I have not altered it in a long time. I hope that it is an improvement.