Sunday, October 31, 2021


Blogaversary -- my 15th on October 24th  -- Where have all the years gone?

I want to tell all of you how much I've come to appreciate getting to know you, along the way.   As I've aged, I've mentioned in recent years how my once large family and wide number of friends here and across the country have been, surprisingly to me, dying in significantly increasing numbers.   How very inconsiderate of them -- a thought with which most of them if still able would laughingly agree!

Never in my wildest imagination did I ever anticipate I would be deprived  of the presence of so many in my life as has occurred with contemporaries and especially those younger than me.  Somehow, though I knew differently on some level, I expected in my old age that most people in my life for whom I cared would be around at least as long as I was, especially my husband, or probably even longer.

After my husband died, I finally was able to begin participating more in some local interest groups to possibly form new friends filling the gap left by the death of the many friends I had acquired in moves about our country through the years.   I was surprised to discover new social relationships did not evolve as readily as they had in my earlier years.  Given the shortened remaining time in our lives can challenge building relationships.  That said, I recall one older long gone friend once told me, there are no friends like old friends.  

This proved to be true for socialization with any participants beyond the monthly meeting times of groups I joined, such as Night Writers, which ended several years ago.  Then, as the years passed, most aging members, even much younger ones, began moving away, or had to devote more time to their loved one's needs, with a few developing serious medical issues, others dying.

In another example, some book club members I learned were caregivers of a spouse or another, and this outing was their only respite time, a situation with which I could identify.  Others hardly had enough time and energy to sustain involvement with local family members, old long time friends, or those new ones they were developing in their nearby retirement community, so they regretted inability to predictably incorporate new people from outside their world into their lives.  Couples circulated almost exclusively with other couples.  All of this is understandable.  I discovered other bloggers reports of encountering similar situations where they lived, thwarting their efforts to form a new local social network.

When I stopped my part time work at age 79, after a couple years some unexpected complications aging can bring began gradually slowing my activities, surprisingly to me at what I thought was my young age.  Had I anticipated this I would have retired sooner, but life is unpredictable.  Of course, like all of you, the pandemic has impacted my life, altering my situation somewhat more and my further socialization efforts as I continue living in place in my home.

Blogging, when I began,  I had perceived from others was believed to offer a multitude of untapped benefits to many including opening the world to older people via the Internet, as well as providing an opportunity to participate in a community, especially for those who live alone or might not have family close by. This was a concept with which I agreed, though not necessarily thinking of blogging being that important to me at the time.  

Little did I anticipate or realize that blogging would, in the years ahead for me, become much more significant in my social life.  So, I genuinely and sincerely offer an inadequate "thank you", to every one of you for writing your entertaining, often informative, occasionally humorous blogs, taking the time to comment on my own conglomeration of thoughts, and offering the blogger community virtual friendship we all enjoy.

On to the current world in which I live .....

I had my annual medical examination with my doctor concluding I was still alive -- just as I thought.   I received this year's protective flu injection.  The end of this coming week I'll be the recipient of the Pfizer Booster jab in my other arm.  Then, I'll be all shot up for however long all that lasts!  ha

If you saw news reports or read about the "Bomb Cyclone and 'Atmospheric River'" lambasting California last week, that rain and storm was elsewhere, not where I live, just below SoCal's foothills.  I did observe we received only a very limited, meager, dripping-off-my-house's-roof amount of rain.

Now, we actually have summer again for a few days with temperatures pushing into the eighties, to be followed soon by cooling into the seventies.  There's even a hint (10% chance) of moisture for several days which will do little or nothing to lessen drought in our area, if the rain really arrives.

Never fear, I believe fall is still trying to come on the scene!  A favorite song of mine seems appropriate here as I think of fall, my favorite season -- the spectacular colors of changing leaves from Aspens golden yellows to Maples rich rusts and deep reds, plus color variations from other trees and shrubs most observable at higher elevations than my own and more profoundly in other parts of our country where I once lived.  

There was that memorable overwhelmingly colorful fall driving trip my husband and I made up the eastern Atlantic coast through states including New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, into Niagara Falls and Canada.   This was my husband's birthday month as well as my own and others in my family.   

I'm also reminded of Eva Cassidy whose vocal talents were just becoming recognized when she died much too early in her young life.

Autumn Leaves (official video) 

 Eva Cassidy & the London Symphony Orchestra

Then there were fall memories after our family was started, taking our children to a pumpkin patch at what was predominately a nut farm the rest of the year, near what was then called the San Diego Zoo Wild Animal Park, to make their selections for later carving.  One pumpkin's flesh I made into a family favored pumpkin pie.  

Many years later after I became a widow, fall trips to Michigan included visits to a cider farm reminding me of when as a young girl in Ohio we had an apple press from which we made our own cider a couple years. 

Another year in Michigan, when my grandson was younger we had come full circle with a trip to a pumpkin farm that included more cider and a challenging walk through a corn stalk maze.  

And then there's Halloween's ghosts and goblins along with the distributing and gathering of all those goodies!

Perhaps fall has special memories for you, too, and blogging has made your life more enjoyable. 

Thanks again to one an all bloggers and especially those I've come to know here! 

Sunday, October 24, 2021


Wracking my brain for some humorous topic to write about, I came up with diddly squat,  zero, naught, nada, zilch.   Unless you think it's funny that sometime during the past year I concluded, for some unknown curious reason, that I was a year older than I actually am!  

I credit my daughter for adding this unexpected year to my life when she phoned on my birthday, asked what year I was born and did the math.  I just lose track of the years which seem to have decreasing significance to me as I get older.  So, go ahead and laugh at my expense.  What do I care?  I'm a year younger than I've been thinking!

Old Folks -- FOUR FRESHMEN.    Vocal by Don Barbour

This seems a good time to consider the reports of a new study should we all continue to live through the coming decades -- Human Mortality at Extreme Age, recently released by The Royal Society Publishing you can read HERE.

"The first human could live to 130 within this century" as Victor Tangermann at Futurism's Neoscope reports in his summary of the study's conclusion HERE.

"The researchers also found that past a certain point, the risk of dying as a supercentenarian plateaus, and remains constant at a 50/50 chance of dying within a given year.  The implication, seemingly, is that sufficiently advanced medicine could provide many people with Methuselah-esque lifespans."

"Beyond age 110 one can think of living another year as being almost like flipping a coin," Anthony Davison, lead researcher and professor of statistics at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL), told Agence France-Presse."

This blog has no centenarians, those 100 years of age, or even in their 90's reading, writing here, including me, to the best of my knowledge currently.  (Some do have living parents in their 90's and Millie, a 96 year old long time blogger is on my blogroll),  Some of us are getting closer with the present years having a way of rapidly flying by, so I find some of these statistics and projections to be of greater interest to me now than when I was much younger.

Pew research reported in 2016:
"In 1990 there were 2.9 centenarians for every 10.000 adults ages 65 and older around the world.  That share grew to 7.4 by 2015 and is projected to rise to 23.6 by 2050.  That's only 28+ years from now!  Some of us may still be around then.  

The research continues, "Since 1990, the population of those ages 80 and older -- the oldest segments of the 65-plus population -- has grown more rapidly than that of the younger segments, those ages 65-79.   This faster growth is driven by improved life expectancies among those 65 and older."  

Reuters reports U.S. life expectancy in men has dropped 2 years in 2020 since the pandemic which isn't over yet.   The rest of the world effects are discussed, also.  The figures above may still reflect an expected generally accurate upward trend but further analysis is warranted.  

Pew research continues:  "...the U.S. leads the world in terms of the sheer number of centenarians, followed by Japan, China, India and Italy."

Perhaps the Global Conference 2021 on the future of aging as described by the Milken Institute provides some insights on what we can anticipate which you can check HERE.

BBC Future of Ageing focuses on some technologies that could transform ageing HERE.

I'm really curious about what the years ahead of us will be like?

I do wonder how this pandemic may further impact some of these figures and projections?

I ponder about possible adverse effects on our aged population if, in the U.S., we lose our constitutional democratic republic to the establishment of an autocracy masquerading as a democracy in our nation?

I consider sometimes, just how long I really want to live?  The bottom line for me is that keeping my mind is critical to my having the quality of life I desire.  My physical condition matters, too, as I wonder just how satisfied I would be continuing to live, should I experience a serious lessening of functioning abilities?

Have you given any thought to aging issues, formulated any views on these matters, or even changed your perspective as you may have experienced health changes and are becoming older?

P.S. Rain is on the way,  maybe up to an inch, which won't eliminate our drought, but moisture is coming to SoCal!    Hooray!

Sunday, October 17, 2021


Fall keeps flirting with Summer as our temperatures alternate between being in the 90s and then dropping 10 to 20 degrees for a day or so.  When will our SoCal seasonal weather stabilize here in the foothills?

^ ^ ^ Life events are erratic for me, too.  On a positive note, I've finally been consistently sleeping each night, so my efforts to realign my metabolic mechanism without resorting to medication or other aids is becoming effective to date.  I'm getting deep sleep, even remembering some dreams, despite at least one interrupting tour each night to survey the bathroom.  

^ ^ ^ On a less positive note, the mechanism on my car's moon roof has become inoperative with diagnostics unduly expensive, plus with the potential of uncertain part(s) needing repair also is not cost effective -- if a motor is needed, they aren't even made any more. 

I don't want a different car presently as this one, intended to last the rest of my life, has plenty of good mileage left and the rest of the car is in very good condition.   Plus, the timing is poor for purchasing another vehicle right now.   Consequently, I have had the slightly opened vent position sealed as-is on my vehicle to prevent any rain's infiltration as we, hopefully, but doubtfully given our drought, enter our rainy season.  Am I being too optimistic?  

^ ^ ^ What really irritates me is another issue -- when credit is due customers, all too often the amount is not automatically given.  After two months of receiving no credit for the week I was without internet service, partly due to my provider's comedy of errors which I described previously HERE, I had to contact the company to request they provide me the credit which was long overdue.   They offered no apology for not having already given me this credit.  I should be able to impose a late charge.   

^ ^ ^ An annual medical appointment I anticipated keeping was rescheduled but not until next year in January.   I guess the doctor figures I won't die between now and then, at least that's how I'll look at it.

^ ^ ^ The final recent aggravation occurred when I contacted a special designated L. A. County phone number that scheduled an appointment at a drive-thru site as I requested to receive my Pfizer booster injection to prevent the Covid infection.  Later, I decided to phone that site directly just to be sure that, in fact, the site was giving drive-thru booster shots.  They were not, only walk-ins.  I can get a walk-in injection at any number of much closer sites.

A pharmacy may have a drive-thru business for prescriptions and other purchases but that does not automatically mean they provide injections as I needed.  I would have expected our County special services number personnel to have realized this, but apparently not, so I'm glad I double-checked.  I'll wait a while longer to see if a drive-thru site(s) is eventually scheduled in my area since I don't feel rushed to get that booster injection.  

I mask when out encountering others, which is infrequently, anyway.  I did forget to put my mask on when JAZZ musicians conversed with me at a distance outside my car where I sat for their patio concert as I've previously described.  We had all been vaccinated.  

^ ^ ^ Oops! The assaults are not over .....  a letter just received today, as I write this, informs me an insurance policy we've had for years through my husband's employer is now terminated.  The Insurance Company could not be rehabilitated so all Cancer Reimbursement Plan Policy/Certificates that company has underwritten are cancelled.  

This policy was to cover some costs ordinary health insurance didn't.  Fortunately, we never needed this insurance.   Now, I hope I never will regret no longer having the coverage.   Apparently, we should remember that in life there are no guarantees all insurance policies will remain in effect, or that we won't need the coverage they offer at some future time for that matter.  (I'll contact my husband's employer from whom he retired to see if they will be offering a replacement policy at reasonable cost.)   

Well, I hope the coming week proves to be go a little more smoothly.  Keep smilin' and laughin' is my motto.

* * *

Aging has had me making adjustments in my home to be more compatible with how my physical activities have changed as I've become older.  Those of us choosing to live in place sometimes find it necessary to  modify our homes in numerous ways.  Some modifications can become necessary to make living not only safer but more comfortable.

Numerous web sites provide lists of recommendations and other suggestions to aid our determining what changes or additions we may need or want to make where we live.  One such site is Assisted  For example, one of the most appreciated changes for me has been replacing the commodes in my bathrooms to taller ones.  

One unresolved problem I've encountered is changing light bulbs in ceiling lights.  In the dining area adjacent to my kitchen is a pull-down light over my table which is perfect, allowing me to easily change burned-out light bulbs.  Why not have pull-down lights for those in the ceiling in other rooms?

There are numerous pull-down lights I found in my web search but most are much too fancy as is their price, and that of even the few more appropriately plain ones given they're all considered vintage.  There were no pull-down lights revealed that I find acceptably appropriate for bedrooms which is what I need.

I did find a rather plain, simple light, with a frosted glass square having curled corners similar to what I have, that softens or mutes the two bare light bulbs above.  This light fixture would be ideal if only it was pull-down.  I've inquired of one light distributor whether or not such a light pull-down adaptation could be made by the manufacturer.

I would think there might be a market for such a pull-down light to others besides me.  This pull-down light could be what older people living in place need in order to change light bulbs safely --  no standing shakily on the bed if you're tall enough as I anxiously watched my husband once do,  or climbing on ladders,  having to ask a friend, or hiring a handyman when bulbs burn out, especially important for those who live alone.  Granted we have longer-lasting light bulbs now but they, too, ultimately burn out and need to be replaced.

Could numerous others use pull-down ceiling lights?

Do you ever encounter challenges having to pursue getting credit to which you're entitled? 

What modifications have you found to be beneficial or some you need to make to be safe and comfortable where you live?   

Sunday, October 10, 2021


"Kalilily Time" by Elaine -- a writer/blogger/poet of interest who has been in the blogosphere since blogging's beginnings -- read the "Who" and "Why" by clicking on her blog above.   Like many of us life has resulted in her needing to take a hiatus from time to time and I've missed her when that has occurred, so let's welcome Elaine back!  

Elaine's poetry has appeared in numerous publications.   She also wrote some very interesting blog posts which she has resumed doing in the past few days.  An excerpt from one of her recent blog posts says: 

"...I've been trying to track down other bloggers around my age to see if we can develop into a virtual community of kindred spirits.   That's what I had back in the 2000s, and I miss the virtual camaraderie."

I think you may want to pay her a visit to welcome her back by clicking on her blog above at her web URL:

* * *
I've had a rude awakening, or in the vernacular of today, I'm woke.  I discovered I may actually be ageist when I wrote to my adult children a description of my experience when I recently attended an afternoon outdoor jazz concert.  I referred to some other people there with descriptive words well beyond saying they were old, which, of course, I am, too, so I'll omit any of that ageist language which might be seen as offensive.  

The concert afternoon stayed hot in the mid to low 90s as I sat in my car in the parking lot right next to the concert area patio of the Japanese restaurant, with all of my car windows down.  I turned the A/C on briefly only once since I didn't want to run down my battery during those hours and my gas was rather low.  

I digress ..... but I haven't filled my gas tank, expecting rates will go down from the $4.40+ per gallon.  Now I learn that's not likely to happen any time soon and the price could go up -- to $5 or more!  Clearly, I better fill up my car's gas tank soon.

No doubt you've heard we've had a big oil leak off our Pacific Coast originating in the Long Beach area, with the oil slick moving southward, possibly to San Diego, adversely affecting the environment -- ocean life creatures including sea lions and otters, dolphins, fish, birds covered in oil though only a few needing rescuing so far, wetlands damage, pollution of numerous beaches.

Early aid to mitigate some of the potential problems has helped the total damage be less to date than had been expected.  The cause is presently thought to be a ship's 's anchor dragging and ripping open the oil pipeline, possibly occurring as long ago as a year earlier, but the definite cause is yet to be determined.  I expect the oil companies might cite that as another excuse for our high gas prices.  When will offshore oil drilling everywhere permanently cease?

Back to the concert ..... I enjoyed the young Exit 9 trio (note: current YouTube musical group videos with this name are not this group) who played classic mellow jazz standards including a favorite of mine, "On Green Dolphin Street", plus a few pop songs through the decades, other newer tunes, also easy listening compositions some call smooth jazz.The Exit 9 trio consisted of a keyboard, guitar and drums.  A duo of guitars played one short segment.  I hope this group is invited to return each month as I told them.   The next week's performing group, ZZAJis a longtime favorite of mine about which I've written HERE before.

Here are two different versions of "On Green Dolphin Street",  one with noted Pianist Peter Nero with orchestra, the other with the Latin beat of talented musician Sergio Mendes.

Peter Nero -- The Unforgettable  -- Sheet Music & mp3 - Okmusix 

Sergio Mendes -- Moderno - Milestones Records 

Continuing the now-edited-to-remove-ageist-attitude-wordings report of my experience ..... I had a pretty good view of the Exit 9 jazz trio, could hear the music fine, but sometimes people on the patio moving to seek shade, as the sun crossed the sky, would block part of my view.  There was only a low wall and greenery between them and me, but, irritatingly to me, some seated at the back of the patio closest to my car parked headed-in next to them in the parking lot, paid no consideration at all to my presence behind them they had to have seen.  They were inconsiderate, unlike those sitting on the patio in front of them were for them, so they could see.  

I wrote disparaging descriptions later to my children of the old man, and an old woman there who chatted with him as the concert wore on.  My negative attitude toward them was obviously colored by the fact they kept interfering with my view.  I didn't want to toot my car's horn, but I sure felt like doing so several times.

In my message to my kids, I groused about the guy's appearance and ponytail, was rather snide about her appearance in a backless, very very short sundress that I'm more accustomed to seeing on a much younger woman.  Actually, she was very smart, definitely, including her big red hat, and wisely dressed for the extremely hot afternoon of well over 90 degree temperatures.  Comfort and safety from heat stroke is the name of the game.  They were both quite respectable representatives of their 60s generation.

People mostly sat some distance apart with less casual interaction than pre-pandemic days.  Nobody wore a mask, but I had one at the ready in my car, especially since the decrease in Covid infections had instead gone up in both the public and our schools -- attributed to the unvaccinated, of course!

There's usually a pretty friendly group at these free jazz concerts -- a few folks came together, but a number of both sexes came and left alone.  Strangers talked with one another between tunes and during breaks.  I do recall one individual years ago who was married, apparently lived on my street, though I had never known of him or his family.  Some in the musical group seemed to know him, or maybe he had just been showing up for their concerts before I started attending after my husband died.  

The man was a big talker everybody could hear with his comments between sets directed toward varying musicians, sometimes naming an instrument he said he played.  At one point, he spoke disparagingly of marriage with broad statements, then intimating he would welcome meeting someone he could rendezvous with in a nearby town.  

Later that afternoon after that statement he called me over, then started talking quite confidentially, but didn't make much sense.  He finally gave me a weak excuse for this talk in his one-sided conversation of having a toe problem that didn't sound like much of one to me but suggesting I might want to examine him.  I don't know what he had in mind since he wasn't removing his shoe and sock to show me, though I wouldn't have looked anyway.  Did he really want medial advice from me -- there, in front of others?

I nicely explained to him his toe was quite out of my area of expertise since, I stressed to him, I was a Speech-Language Pathologist -- we weren't exactly trained in toe rehabilitation.  I walked away and we never talked again.   I shared that conversation, laughing it all away, with the vocalist with whom I had become friends.  He never showed up at the concerts again, at least when I was there.  I think he and his family eventually may have moved away to that town he mentioned.

* * *
I'm in disbelief -- we actually received about one-tenth of an inch of rain here in my SoCal foothills!  Furthermore, we may get a dribble or drop more later.  This will hardly matter much to alleviate our drought, but "every little bit helps", as the saying goes.  Mammoth Mountain even had snow -- a ski area, driving time approximately 5 hours from Los Angeles, 3 hours south of Reno, Nevada.  Our temperatures have dropped considerably and finally begin to feel like fall.

Are the seasons noticeably changing where you live?  Do you listen to your favorite music to influence your mood for weathering the vagaries of life, including pandemic confinement or isolation, to distract from or escape pain, or perhaps loneliness due to other reasons?

Sunday, October 03, 2021


Here's a tune with lyrics that readily describe the place songs, all music, can take in our lives.  This song was popular in a different era, in a different musical style than is currently prevalent and preferred by many people in later generations.  This version is sung by a prominent vocalist of the day, though many others including Mario Lanza, Tony Bennett, Perry Como, and in later years Mahalia Jackson, Willie Nelson, Stevie Wonder are named on the YouTube site as singing their interpretations with many available in videos there presently.

[If the video below does not appear when published in the wee morning hours, I apologize -- it will be because the powers that be have chosen to block it (as they did an earlier one of Perry Como as this post awaited publication).  Why, I don't know, as I thought sufficient credit to all had been provided -- especially since this blog does not exploit by accepting advertising or gain monetarily from content.]  

Read the song's lyrics beginning with these words from AZLyrics by clicking here on the link:    (Writers: V. Youmans, B. Rose, E. Eiscu.                             

 "Without a song the day would never end,   

 Without a song the road would never bend   

 When things go wrong, a man ain't got a friend

 Without a song."  

Frank Sinatra.

(read extensive commentary and credits on youtube site)


Have you been missing the Sunday musical extravaganza we use to enjoy from Australia's Peter Tibbles with his assistant, Norma?

We heard such a delightful variety of music of all genres from popular to classical, introducing many musicians, some new to each of us as were some of their chosen songs from vocals to orchestral concerts.  Then, there was Peter"s commentary, sharing interesting information with us we often hadn't known before.

Peter's musical selections are one of the features on Ronni Bennett's "Time Goes By" blog I enjoyed on Sundays, or other days if I visited later.  Sadly, TGB is no longer active, contrary to the last post written by the person Ronni expected after her death would continue TGB.   The blog, it appears, is not going to be revived, though no official statement to that effect has been released.  However, we can still enjoy Peter's music selections.

Who is Peter Tibbles?  If you don't know, read here by clicking on this link:

Previous TGB posts with all sorts of interesting topics and comments can be accessed by clicking on the various subjects shown on the right side bar on the home page:

A search on one of those links ultimately takes you to:                                                                                           "612 posts categorized "Elder Music".

Click on any one of those posts and you can enjoy the musical variety and commentary Peter provided weekly that so many of us appreciated.  We can continue to enjoy the music as there are so many melodies and tunes there with so much more, not all of which I was able to listen to or read about every Sunday --  perhaps you couldn't either.  Now is a golden opportunity to catch up on all you missed, or to listen once again to your favored music, performed by the well known, lesser known and any new artists to you.

Many have expressed disappointment new columns from Peter are no longer available which is why I'm writing this, to remind all we can still hear Peter's musical offerings.  We listen to music we especially enjoy repeatedly, so we can do so again and again with Peter's entertaining TGB musical columns simply by going to the TGB links above or following them on that blog's website.

What are your musical tastes?