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Thursday, December 15, 2005

A foggy day in Merced town (and a foggier night)

Bee Gees singing "First of May". I have a miscellaneous compilation; mostly 70's and all quiet. Just switched over to the Byrds. I love the 12 string guitar on their music. I can sort of listen without listening if that makes any sense. I know their music so well it's just there. Crosby, Stills, etc. snuck in now. Nobody sounds like Neil Young except Neil Young. Wrong - It's Neil Young on his newer album Prairie Winds. At least I was close. Gawdessness turned me on to that one. I didn't know he had anything new out. Byrds will follow this album if I'm still awake.

Zero visibility here. I can't see the house across the street. It set in early and became worse quickly.

The California central valley is blessed with tule fog (pronounced too-lee) which is low lying and deadly. My husband (Ray) used to work as a security guard for a retirement community 25 miles north in Turlock. He doesn't drive so I used to put in 100 miles a day, mostly at night and early morning. I'd take him in two hours early sometimes to beat the fog coming back. He's retired on disability now. I certainly didn't want him to be ill but I couldn't have done one more year of that driving. It gets so bad on Hwy 99 (Mollie, you'll probably remember even as far north as Chico) that the Highway Patrol would have "pace cars" leading traffic. They'd swing back and forth across the lanes keeping the cars behind them. Occasionally, some fool would come flying around them and the CHP would just let them go. I'm sure they radioed on down the road though.

Oh - tule, now that I have some international readers, is a reed that grows in the low lying areas. Our local Native Americans made dwellings from it and I'm sure used it for other things as well.

My friend left for New Hampshire/Vermont today via Greyhound. I don't envy him the trip. He did leave his computer here, it does run Windows XP, and it was running fine as of yesterday. I'll get someone (one of the boys probably) to hook it up and figure out what it takes to run it with mine. I'm about as terrible with hardware as I am fixing blog rolls. I figure if I can type, that's enough for now. I've just about decided, unless there's something I don't know, that I'll send him payment in January and the girls will have their own computer. He doesn't want much for it and I've checked the classifieds and his asking price is in line with what I see there. He tried to sell it for over a month before he finally gave up here.

I fed him meat loaf, scalloped potatoes, green beans, cauliflower with cheese sauce, and biscuits with white gravy. Figured he wouldn't get another hot meal for a few days so he might as well get a good start. Plain old country cooking (except for the Betty Crocker potatoes). His bus left at midnight in the fog, probably headed north thru the worst of it. I'd imagine they'd take I-80 up and over Donner Pass and then cut north.

I think our local PFLAG group will be helping set up a center in Modesto (40 miles north) to serve 4 or 5 central valley counties. They will focus primarily on GLBT teens. They're planning counseling, a hot line for at risk kids, social events, working with the high schools for gay-straight alliances, and generally trying to promote understanding. We have almost nothing here for these kids and not a whole lot for adults. I know they will face opposition because PFLAG has run into some of it here although no violence so far. I've checked out some similar programs nationally and my mission, which I can do from here, is put them in touch with each other. It's a start.

We're also thinking about chartering a bus for "Until There's a Cure" day in July 2006. Watch the Giants play and have a great time. We have to do it in the next couple of weeks - those tickets go fast.

Elcie isn't feeling great. She came home crabby, stayed that way pretty much, and went to bed at 7:00 almost in tears with spelling words uncompleted. 24 words to put in alphabetical order and then write 3 times each. I gave her a break and went back to last year's system. She numbers the words in order to prove she wasn't cheating and I put them on a spread sheet and hit "sort". We got that far before she started crying. I'm not going to have her weeping her way through homework. Anyhow, she woke up around 11, picked up the spread sheet, wrote the words and piled back into bed. I wonder if she'll even remember it in the morning. I made the mistake of lying down when she did and now I'm awake. I hate it when I do that but I couldn't keep my eyes open one more minute.

The girls' mom was here and got R & R settled for the night. I woke back up around ten in time to say goodbye to my friend. Tasha and her boyfriend took him to the station and then drove the van home for the night. They'll bring it back early morning. Greyhound is a little closer to where they have moved than it is to here and I didn't want them in the fog any longer than necessary. The van can sit at one place just as well as it can at another. She called to let me know he was on the bus and called again to let me know they made it home .

Rochelle and Rebecca have run into some bullies and extortionists. I'll try to find out more tomorrow. It happened off school property (whatever it was). First, I have to make sure the girls have their facts straight, not always the easiest thing to do. I don't want to go flinging accusations around wildly just yet.

Other than that, not a bad day.

Still haven't put up decorations. Maybe Friday if I want the girls to do it. That's been the hangup; trying to find time after school and we've let them participate since they were old enough to hang an ornament.

Ridiculous time to be up. Neil Young now singing "After the Gold Rush". Rochelle loves that song. She picks up on the line about mother nature and also the spaceship.

Good a thought to close on as any. Rochelle, Mother Nature, and silver spaceships. Told you we're weird.


Andrea said...

You are not weird, you are totally normal. So much like my family it is amazing.

As for bullys - sort that out fast, I really hope nothing starts. It is scary for everyone involved.

ipodmomma said...

when Spencer was 6, 7, 8 years old, he loved Neil Young... got that from Peter. for a while I wondered if he was going to turn into a musician... but no. he does have eclectic tastes...

too bad about the bullies... will keep the girls in my prayers... and your friend too, for safe travel.

oh man, I will never forget that fog! a few times I drove home so slowly, just keeping my eyes on that middle line.. but I'd rather drive in fog than snow, any day...

that dinner sounded so good!!! maybe I'm just peckish... :))) making spaghetti tonight. and hopefully dressing that tree... :))) yeah, I think I am hungry!!!

Mother Damnable said...


What are those nasty teachers doing setting homework this time of year?

What a good girl you are for doing it anyway. Good for you!

I'm sending mustard up their arses 'til they be nice.

(Apologies for the profanity)

Well! Rochelle and Rebecca, please accept a shield from England, with a rebound factor of warp factor 9,
Be careful, never use it in anger ;>)

Ann, my deario, your dinner sounds divine, I hope your friend arrived safely?

Uncle Roger said...

Hadn't seen a post for a long time (for you) and was getting a little worried. Glad to see all is well.

Personally, I don't care for Neil Young -- He's a little too whiny for me. Also, if you need networking gear to hook the computers up, let me know -- I have some odds and ends laying around.

Angel said...

Awww I hope Elcie is feeling better.

George Breed said...

Yep, I'm up at all hours too. Since I became a geezer a couple of years ago (a name a fellow called me and I accept with pride), I sleep when I fall down, then get up and go again. I like it.

Thank you for your blog. I like the purple (lavender?) color and the text size for easy read.

Blessings on you and your family.

Lindsay Lobe said...

A busy fog filled day. Your blog looks good too !! with such a lot of references -its great Laura was able to help out -----so much easier at the top rather than at the bottom.
I am sure you will sort out the new computer ....your doing well !!

Best wishes

madcapmum said...

That fog sounds horrific. We deal with it from time to time, but not so that anyone would dream of setting up a special highway brigade!

Snowplows are our "highway brigade" right now.

Mother Nature's had enough and she's setting off in a silver spaceship for some better planet? Funny Rochelle!