that's sure what it sounds like out there. And according to [livejournal.com profile] darlong, that's what it felt like, too. Tons of damage everywhere. She and our friend Skye had to wear bandanas over their noses and mouths while doing chores because the dust and dirt was being blown around relentlessly. Deb has damage to the mill. In Kitchenere/Waterloo (biggish urban area 25 miles east of us) easily ten traffic lights were blown off their lines. Either dangling into the intersections or just dropped onto the ground. Trees down everywhere. Surprisingly, we didn't lose power, but I had the bathtub filled just to be safe. Crazy, crazy weather.

I had 2 1/2 hours sleep last night, so I've too loopy to do much of anything today except page through the internet and stare into space. I'd have been a danger to myself and others if I were out in all of that strong wind, so I stayed in. And did not sleep. *headdesk* I'm sure a lot of you know how you reach that tipping point where your body just will not shut down. Yeah, I waved at that as I zoomed by at around, oh, 7AM.

Anyway, this is not a posty post because - loopy. But it is pic spam of our tent boys. I took these a few days ago. I don't know - are three pics equal to a spam?

A few of the boys )
I cannot believe that my brain is as wired as it is right now. Even our very nocturnal cats are all, "Will you go settle somewhere? We're trying to sleep here."

Things:
1. it's the coldest night we've had so far. The air temp without the wind chill is 1F/damncoldC. Yet it's supposed to 50F/10C the day after tomorrow.

2. We had a major wind storm Sat. night thru Sunday. Woke up to no power, which out here also means no water. I had every intention of filling the bathtub on Saturday before I went to bed. This I failed to do. Once everyone was up, we headed into town and the local McDonald's for free wifi for Dar, coffee and bad food for me. I had to take my morning pills, so that's what had to be done. Ran a few errands because we were out anyway. The electricity was out for 8+ hours, so it got just a tad chilly in the house.

3. When the power came back on, it surged. It took out the power plug for my TV satellite receiver, which I eventually figured out after a process of elimination and a lot of swearing. Fortunately we had a spare, so I got my TV back.

4. Not so lucky with the dishwasher, however. The surge fried the solenoid that opens up the seal that lets the water into it. This I did not discover until running the same load of dishes twice trying to get them clean and succeeding only in baking all that dried food onto everything. (This would not be the case if people would just rinse off their dishes before putting them in the dishwasher or leaving them there for me to put in. But apparently rinsing off your dishes is an onerous task - Herculean, even - so it usually doesn't happen.) Anyway, it should maybe hopefully be fixed by mid week. So it's hand washing for me until then. I don't mind that much. I've been washing dishes daily for 58 years now, so it seems to be my lot, eh.

5. I knew that my camera battery was dying, but it is now officially dead. It was fully charged after the last time I used it. I got three pictures out of it today. Time to buy a new battery, I'd say.

6. My latest review for The River went viral. I have no idea why, but it's been viewed over 2,800 times the last time I checked. I in no way think it has to do with my writing; the hits are coming from Google searches, so there's something about the combo of the show and episode title that led people to it.

7. It also brought me my very first bitchy commenter :) I gave the episode a C; she liked it a great deal more than I did. So I got the "it must be so nice for you sitting back and critiquing other people's creativity. I'm sure everyone at the show is waiting on the edge of their chairs for you to tell them how to make the show better." I didn't want to harsh her buzz by saying how flattered I was that she thought anyone connected with the show would read my review. I just sent a simple reply that I'm glad that she enjoyed the episode; from what I'd been reading, public reaction was mixed, and ultimately I was rooting for the show because I do like it. No response yet. Heh.

8. [livejournal.com profile] darlong, in a protective mission to find out just who was dissing me, tracked her down on Facebook. Dar triumphantly told me that the commenter was a fan of Sarah Palin, so "what else could you expect, right?" That's my babycakes :)

9. The problem with living in such close quarters is that you can't really get up and do anything once insomnia hits. I could do laundry but the washer/dryer is right next to the bedrooms. I'd make tapioca pudding from scratch, but it's about now when Dar wanders out to sleep on the sofa (it's a chiari thing), and the kitchen/living room is just one big room.

10. Oh, look. Game of Thrones is on! OK, that should occupy me for a while.

Hope y'all have a great day ahead of my, my friends.
Yeah, still awake. (Drugs don't fail me now.) But I solved the dilemma of what to read next Finished LOTR about 30 mins ago - straight through the appendices, I might add. I had to give up on the family trees because the print is too small. Want to read something else substantial, somewhat historical but with a nice mix of humor, whimsy, drama, and most of all, great story -telling. i went shopping through my one poor bookshelf (now mostly holding non-fiction and reference works) and there - shoved behind some language books - it wiggled it's gold and purple cover to attract my attention.

T.H. White's The Once and Future King! Of course! Arthur shall rise when he's needed. OK, that's so supposed to be needed by Britain, but I was born in New Britain, so there's absolutely both a tie-in and a loophole. I love you, ARthur. Let's show these newbies to Arthurian legend what it's really all about.

The bunny listening to the wireless has nothing pertinent except to add some whimsy. And maybe get me to smile as I all asleep.
I didn't really choose to wake up, because I'd only been asleep for 2 1/2 hours, but apparently my brain (maybe my nervous system?) had its own agenda, and sleep was not on the list. I read. I went online and read some more. Finally around 5AM I started to fall back asleep. At 5:28AM Rocky woke me up by trying to scratch a hatchway through my bedroom door. Go away, Rocky. Almost fell asleep again when the cat fight brought me up and out of bed in a rush.

You see, we have this orange cat that roams around the area; he's not a stray, because he looks fed and groomed, but he's definitely an outdoor cat. He comes up onto our deck either late at night or early in the morning and taunts our three cats. They freak. I mean yowling and screaming and then Holmes gets aggressive and Rocky reacts and Pixel hisses and all three have huge tails and ruffled fur and it's a mess. This morning Dar was already up and trying to intervene - without getting herself slashed - but by the time it was over Rocky had one of his fangs torn out (or broken out) of his mouth. Blood and unhappiness. He's been laying low most of the day on my bed; I've been giving him attention and wet food since he's having trouble eating the dry stuff. Poor Rockula.

Then it was time to run some errands. I gather all of my stuff - water bottle, grocery bags, list, purse, iPod - throw it in the car, start to back up onto the road and then pull right back in because I have a flat tire. Who gets a flat tire in their own driveway? That would be me. I was all set to change the flat (heaven knows I've done it before), but I was saved by Deb's daughter's boyfriend. It turns out that my tires are so out of alignment that the tire - which is only a year old - was punctured by its own steel belt. There was some minor drama about finding the lug key, but that was resolved, and I toddled into town on the little donut spare tire that seemed barely big enough to keep that side of my car from scraping the ground.

Along the way I passed two different dead raccoons on our road (poor creatures), and one of them had a very active crowd of turkey vultures working on it. I had to nudge my way past them, because they were not giving up their roadway buffet. I made it to the garage, but I had to wait, of course, because I didn't have an appointment. Happily, I had thought to bring a book. A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous 14th Century by Barbara Tuchman. It's a reread, but it's been years since I've read it, so it's all pretty new to me. The upside of having memory problems :) I was there over two hours, but at least I left with a new tire and appointment next week to get the tires aligned. (In the meantime, I'm hoping not to drive that often.)

Then on to the farm store to pick up some stuff for the alpaca's barn. By this time I'm literally reeling from fatigue. I have to pick up soft wood pellets (35 lbs.) and Stable Boy (50 lbs.); they're each used on the floor of the barn to absorb liquid and help tamp down the smell. For some reason known only to the manufacturer, the bags for the soft wood pellets are made of what for all intents and purposes can be described as tissue paper. The bags split very easily, and it's the usual routine to lift and replace several bags because as you start to put it in the cart the contents start to spill out. So got that done. I have a shopping carriage, and I drape the heavy stuff across the little seat where people put their kids. Or their purses. The Stable Boy is on a high shelf, but that actually works to my advantage because I don't have to lift it. Dusty as hell, though. Oh, and I picked up a large bag of rabbit pellets; the alpacas love them. Head to the cashier - who is new - and do the dance of trying to find the damn UPC codes. Another new helper, trying to be, well, helpful, comes over, lift the 50 lb. bag so the cashier can get the code, and then drops it into the bottom of the carriage. *head desk* Then he races off to help someone in the rear of the store, because he is helpful. The cashier asks if I want to wait for him to help me load the stuff into my car, but I just want to get home. I did manage to wrangle it out of the carriage and into the trunk without hurting my back or dropping it on the ground and splitting it open. Yay!

On the way home, I notice that the buffet is over and there is nothing but a bloody splotch in the road now, and the buzzards are all flying around overhead. Damn, they're efficient.

Got home, dropped everything off at the barn. Tried to put the trunk back in order but gave up. Got something to eat, headed into my room and thought I'd get some sleep. But. The phone rang off the hook. (I wonder if there are people reading this who don't actually get the reference there?) Dar was there to answer it (and she's having her own day, by the way), but I never did get any sleep. And now it's going on 10PM, and I'm wide awake again.

And that was my day. How was yours?
Apparently my body reacts badly to Coppertone sunscreen. I absorb it, and when I sweat, it's orange. And then the stains set when washed in well water like we have on the farm. Underwear, pants, shirts - all orange streaked. Maybe I can start a new fad.

Have to get up early tomorrow to volunteer at the The Ride for Heart in Waterloo (Ontario). (It's actually a ride or walk fund raiser, but I know it as the original name.) Dar started this particular fundraiser many years ago when her son, Eliot, was born with severe heart problems, and there was no medical facility locally that could deal with it. She and the organization have raised a hell of a lot of money over the years, and no kids - or adults - have to worry about lack of cardiac care around here anymore.

I'm completely fatigued. I just haven't been sleeping well for the past several nights. Pain, dry mouth, weird sleeping positions that torque my neck and joints (how do I manage to twist myself into a pretzel when I sleep, really?), bad dreams, and the ever popular quick trot to the bathroom around 3AM. (I wonder if they'll ever do bladder transplants?) And tonight I have a freakin' fly in my room that will have to be tracked down and killed before I can go to bed. Which I should be doing very soon.

Aaand I just got the little bastuhd! OK, now to sleep. Hope you're all having a pleasant weekend!
I spent several hours in the car this afternoon driving to and from Toronto to pick up Maddie and Dar from their trip to Cape Breton. I was happy to do it; I missed them, and their trip was just . . . surreal. (Not my story to tell yet.) The day was very warm and very sunny. I slathered on the SPF 60 sunscreen and off I went.

Fast-forward to this evening. I managed to get about an hour's sleep before the flare hit. I felt suddenly as if I had a badly sprained ankle. Then both feet, ankles, and lower legs started throbbing; I couldn't take the pressure of the sheet and blanket on them, so I sat up on the side of the bed. My feet and ankles were inflamed and swollen. OK then. I took some meds to try to calm the ache and tried to go back to sleep. That's when the itching started. First on my legs, and then it spread up my torso and into my arms. I figured I'd rather read than scratch, so I turned on the laptop and started browsing. That went well until my vision suddenly blurred so badly that I could no longer read. Very well, if my body is going to be that way, then I'll just try to get to sleep again. And I almost made it! I was just drifting off when I was awakened by a loud conversation going on a few feet from the bed. Of course there was no one there - hello, aural hallucinations! Haven't heard from you in a while. Pull up a chair and let's chat. No? It's no fun when I'm actually awake? Screw you then. Besides, by this time my nervous system was sending out little jolts of electricity along my arms and neck. At that point, for some reason, a flax cracker with peanut butter seemed to be the answer, so off into the kitchen I went. Fended off Holmes, who wanted me to turn the faucet on so he could drink from it. Chomped on the cracker. And here I am. The itching is dying down. The sprain isn't as achy as it was. I'm still getting the occasional electrical ping. I think I'm going to try to sleep again.

Ah, Lupus. Every flare is a new adventure. You just don't know what it's going to bring. I like the sun, you know? I sometimes crave to be able to stand in the sunlight and let it wash over me, feel it on my face and arms. Instead I wrap myself up in long sleeves and garden gloves and hats and scarves. And even then . . .
I slept for eight hours. I got up, had some breakfast so I could take all of my meds, then I went back to sleep for a while. Got up and showered. Went back and dozed until a little after noon. It was great.

I hit a wall yesterday. Dar came home Friday afternoon, and I did some running around that evening to help her prep for our alpaca collective's weekend seminar: Alpacas for Dummies. (No, really.) On Saturday, I was on KP duty, helping to prepare, serve, and clean up after snacks and lunch. I was not the best person to be wielding a sharp chopping knife by that afternoon, but I managed not to bleed on myself or the food, so it was all good.

True to form, by the time night rolled around, I was wired again and thinking that it was going to be another restless, sleepless night . . . but no. Hurrah! I know it was the fact that Dar was here, and I didn't have to worry about being up in time for chores, or being on alert for something happening with the alpacas. I could just sleep. And - with the help of the appropriate pharmaceuticals - I did just that. I must give credit where credit is due :)

We've been having the most bizarre weather for the past two days. Yesterday we had snow showers, freezing rain, hail, almost white-out conditions at times. It fell in visible bands. At one point I was looking out a window on one side of the hall; Suelaine, who was facing the opposite direction, asked what I was looking at. "It's really snowing again." "No, it's not," she replied. And it wasn't on her side of the building. Just after she said that, the snow line passed and it was a mini blizzard all around us.

The night before (Friday), I was driving home from Waterloo to Palmerston - about 30 miles. Waterloo was windy but clear. The closer I got to home, the deeper and darker the cloud cover and the more frequent the bands of rain. There was a sliver of horizon visible to the setting sun. I turned the corner to the long road leading toward our place when suddenly the sun set at just right level to set the sky on fire. I've never seen anything like it. Each cloud was limned in deep red while a brighter, glowing red filled in everywhere else. That was on my left side. On my right side, there was a sunset rainbow against the dark clouds. Again, I've never seen anything like that. It was stunning, set off against the dark gray clouds. So fire on my left, rainbow on my right. I literally almost ran off the road into a ditch because I kept looking back and forth instead of straight ahead. I was hoping to make it home and grab my camera before the show ended, but I didn't make it in time. I was beating myself up for not having my camera with me, believe me.

Today we're back in the sunshine. I never made it outside. I'm sure they could have used my help at the last day of the seminar today, but I couldn't do it. I needed the sleep, and my body decided to take today to shake loose with some craziness. My blood pressure was dropping frequently, and I was dizzy and weak-legged. Fair enough. Cram it all into today and be done with it, sez I.

And then, to top off this wonderful day, Dar made the most delicious ham. It was very exciting, really. Apricot glazed on a bed of onions. My mouth is watering again. AND . . . it looked like a hog's head.


Ham_0999

And now it's time for Treme. I already wonder how I never managed to have Treme in my world before this. It is that magnificent, that addictive.

Gotta run.
I'm sorry, guys. I'm sparse on replies and comments. Dar should be home for a bit tomorrow, and I can maybe start to pull it together to actually acknowledge all you fine folk on my flist.

Hot here today (80F/25C); we can't deal. Alpacas mostly hung out in the barn to get out of the sun. It's happening a little too early for them, I think. Although it's wonderful to stumble out to the kitchen as the sun is rising, look out the window and see a lovely herd of moms and kids all cushed outside, chewing their cuds and enjoying the breaking of the day.

Sleep time for me. (Not really, but let's play along, OK?) I probably won't dream, but I wanted to drop this in for [livejournal.com profile] clarionj, who is interested in dream imagery. I have recurrent dreams where I am looking out a window. Outside that window is usually something horrific - ghouls devouring bodies in my yard, a neighbor's window reflecting the blast of a nuclear explosion, a shimmering circle of ghostly children each carrying a single candle surrounding my house in a clearing in the woods. It doesn't take Freud to figure out that looking through a window is a danger sign for me. There's a story behind that, but it's late.

Pleasant dreams, all :)
Not much has changed. Still not sleeping well, although I'm getting about two hours in before I wake up. It's an improvement.

No crias. Yay! Although Delilah has me a little worried. She's not due until mid May, so if she goes now the cria will be a premie. This will be her second baby; the first delivery was a horrific ordeal for everyone involved: it took the vet (big guy), Dar, [livejournal.com profile] sparky77, and me to get that cria out of her. As I said - horrific. I'm scared to death to face that again on my own. Hell, I'm scared to death to face that again, period.

Anyway. The weather is lovely; it's in the 50s (about 10-12C) with a breeze. Sometimes a strong wind. The alpacas are loving it.

Dar should be home on Friday, I guess. We haven't heard about her booking a flight in tomorrow (Thursday), so I'm guessing it's Friday by default. She has to take part in a series of seminars that the alpaca collective is giving this weekend; then she'll turn around and go back to Nova Scotia.

She had a bad case of food poisoning this week. Knocked her out for about three days. A tainted milk shake was the culprit.

Deb is helping a friend of hers plant his fields, so she's gone most of the day and late into the night; I'm the lone alpaca herder these days. Knock on wood - so far everyone is just kind of lazing about enjoying the good weather.

I finally saw Treme, and I'm hooked after one episode. I've never been to New Orleans, I've never wanted to be a tourist in New Orleans, but this show makes me want to be a part of that community in that devastated part of town.

I have Lostie thoughts, but they'll have to wait until I'm actually functioning with the brain and everything.

Also, I have no idea what's going on, but I have developed a burning pain in the back of my right thigh. It's a nerve, I know that, but I don't think it's sciatica because it's not radiating. Damn annoying, I'll tell you that much.

If I don't hear something positive from Immigration soon . . . I just don't know.

Look at the bunny. Smile.

ETA: According to my Visa card holder (HSBC), at my current rate of payment, I'll pay my card off in 23 years. Joke's on them - I'll be dead before then :)

Look at bunny. Laugh.
Yup. Three-and-a-half hours sleep last night. I'm so tired that I'm shaking. And can I fall asleep? Actually, we'll see :) I just finished looking over a piece that Dar wrote for Series.nu, which is a TV forum like TWoP back in the good ol' days. Dar has a weekly column and will be doing recaps for True Blood when it comes back on. (Big surprise, eh.) I think that we should hit the forums and make them our own. Saloon time! Actually, since it's a new site, the forums are kind of empty - we really could have our way. Nicely, of course.

In cria news, the baby (still unnamed) is doing well. She's up to a little over 20 lbs. as of this morning. I tried to feed her on my own early this afternoon and had, as the kids say, EPIC FAIL. She wasn't having any of that bottle, uh-uh, no way, get that freakin' thing out of my face. Foiled by a 20-lb cria. I'm so ashamed.

So now I take my ashamed self to bed. Where'd I put that hammer?
It was a mid-length whiny post, better off deleted.

Sleep shall cure my ills.

Night all.
I did get some sleep, but it amounted to 3 hours broken up in small naps. I did pretty well today, considering that. Now of course I'm worried that I won't get to sleep tonight :)

I have to wake up early to borrow the Jeep tomorrow, because Dar and I have an appointment to see a new farm. Or rather an old farm - like 150 years old. It's for rent, and on paper it sounds really good. It's on the outskirts of Guelph (pronounced Gwelf), which is a very lovely good-sized town that has a granola rep (completely earned *g*), and it's also a university town. Lesbians! Feminists! Jews!

The farm has a large bank barn set up with stalls as well as two very large paddocks. Four bedrooms, three fireplaces, renovated and updated (although how much we don't know). It's about 35 minutes from where we're living now. It sounds very workable, and we're excited to see it. I'll be taking my camera, so expect some pics.

Cold and windy and gray around here. The hoses froze and the water buckets all had a good layer of ice on them. Fortunately everything warms up during the day, so we top off all of the water buckets in the afternoon since we can't do it in the AM. I hear that the temps are going to rise in a few days, so we just have to hang in for a little while longer. At least we're not getting that nor'easter that you guys in New England will be getting. Yikes! My brother in CT is getting snow! Way too early for that.

Anyway, time to hit the sack. But first . . . de-cat the bed.
I've been up for 23 hours. I don't know what else I can do to fall asleep. Yeah, this should be an interesting day.

Sleep on, my lovelies. Sleep on.

But in great news, Dar may have found a great place for us to move to. You know, in six weeks. Wish us luck.
How can I sleep if I can't unclench my jaw? A question for the ages. Or at least for the aged. I can't afford to get a mouth guard. (Which sounds like some big lug standing over me all night threatening my teeth if they clench.) Maybe I shall trot outside and get a stick to clench on. That ought to freak out the cats. And Dar.
Well since sleep doesn't seem to be an option, I thought I'd take this time to thank everyone who so kindly commented on our recent losses with our fleecy ones. We're still a bit dazed by it, but things are coming back to what passes as normal for us. We're a little gun shy now. It's very windy here today, and I noticed that one of the barn doors had come loose from it's catch and was violently banging open and shut. Some of the alpacas were stuck in the barn and some were stuck outside and everyone was acting freaked out and trying to get in or out. I flashed on one of the crias trying to make it into the barn and having that heavy door slamming into her head or one of her legs - so I flew out there to fix it. This has done absolutely nothing to lessen my anxiety about them at all :)

In better news, I've been gone most of the past two days dealing with specialists appointments. Yesterday I saw my rheumatologist Dr. Pope, and today I met with my nephrologist, Dr. Vitou. I got good reports back from the both of them. Some things are better with the autoimmune diseases and some things are worse, so that balances out. I was able to take a couple of self portraits when I had a mad malar rash going; I presented them to Dr. Pope, and she was suitably impressed that it was a lupus rash. She hadn't been entirely convinced that I had lupus, but this was pretty good proof on top of the blood work and the other symptoms. It turns out that the peripheral neuropathy that I have is more the fault of the Sjogren's Syndrome than lupus. OK, good to know. There's still nothing that I can do about, but at least I like being able to know what's causing it. There's nothing I can do about the fatigue, either, unfortunately. Of all my symptoms it's the one that's getting worse. More rest, less stress, she said. And then she laughed at the look that I gave her. Cuz life calls the shots.

Dr. Vitou was happy to tell me that my kidneys have stabilized. They're not any better, but they haven't worsened. Yay! In fact she's not making any more follow-up appointments for me. If I run into trouble farther down the road, she'd be happy if I got a referral to go back to her, but otherwise it was hasta la vista. That's kind of sad, really, because I really, really like her as a person. I was telling [livejournal.com profile] cajoje that I wish I could get to know her just to hang out with. Well, I suppose I could start downing handfuls of Advil and go into massive kidney failure, but I think there might be less dramatic ways. Anyway, stalking aside, my instructions are to get my kidneys tested once a year or if I get pretty sick from anything else. I can do that.

OK, I've taken a couple pills that should have put me out by now. I am, as they say, tense. At times like this I think of myself as Jaws in that scene where they guys are trying to bring the shark down by shooting lines attached to barrels into his skin. "He's got three barrels in him. He can't stay down with three barrels!" But we great whites are crafty and strong. You're going to need more barrels! Which is my cue to see what else I can do to knock myself off out and get some sleep.
I was awakened at 1:15AM by a loud, LOUD buzzing in my right ear. Sigh. I went to check on Finn. He's not doing that well; it looks like his breathing is more labored. I'd given him a bowl of water before I went to bed, then filled it again. It was empty when I went out there. I gave him some of his formula, but when I was done he was panting. Alpacas don't pant. So I didn't force him to take any more. I just want to be able to cure him or let him go. I hate to see him in distress.

I need to distract myself since worrying and now the buzzing aren't letting me sleep. A simple meme by way of both [livejournal.com profile] dfwall02453 and [livejournal.com profile] windrider67:

meme )
Valentine's Day. Venereal Disease. It was a running joke when I was a kid. I think that's why they now call them STDs. So Happy Valentine's Day that was to you all. I'm still not used to celebrating it, but it's kind of a chocolate swap around these parts, with some little additional things. Chocolate, she is always good, yes.

I got my hair cut today. I went to one of those $20 flat fee places where you just walk in off the street. Since I'd already washed my hair this morning, I didn't get the shampoo and that knocked it back to $16. Really, all she had to do was cut that mullet off and get my hair as close to one length as possible, and she did that. She also murderlized my bangs, but they'll grow. In the meantime, though, I have very scary eyebrows threatening the world. They're mostly grey, so they're very light and almost invisible, except for the hairs that have to be tweezed that are growing dark and randomly around my brows. The impression is that there are little tufts of something kind of poofed above my eyes and they're dueling with these dark blades scattered here and there. Tweezing is a challenge: arthritic hands, tremors, and very, very bad vision. Also thanks to the miracle of aging (and it is a miracle, really) the skin is loose and that adds a difficulty level. You know, I wonder if they make tweezers for people with arthritis? I'll have to check that out.

Today was a much better day than yesterday, thankfully. I was running on very little sleep; in fact very little sleep for the past few days. Besides making me weepy and edgy - never a delightful combo - it also led to a short stint of complete disorientation - - while I was driving. Have you ever suddenly, immediately been soaked in panic? Well, that's what it was like. One second I was driving down Line 86 talking to Dar, and the next instant I had no idea where I was, what vehicle this was, how I was able to drive it, where I was going. PANIC. All I could do was take a deep breath and keep my hands on the wheel, and it passed after a just few seconds. I hate being that tired. Truly.

I was watching Top Chef earlier tonight. (I think it airs earlier in the week in the States.) I enjoy the show - Go, Carla! - but it's pretty much a mystery to me. It's the culinary equivalent of watching National Geographic exploring strange new cultures. I understand cooking somewhat, but I have no feel or appreciation for the science of it. What to substitute for what. What the individual ingredients add to the process and not just to the taste. I have a lousy palate; I can't identify that many different flavors or spices. It's never bothered me because I'm hardly a gourmand. I'll occasionally get a craving for something, but mostly I just eat to ease hunger and for the necessary dietary nutrients. I've never understood waiting in long lines to get into a restaurant and certainly never understood spending a lot of money for a plate of food. Obviously many do. I find it fascinating to listen to the food judges critiquing the dishes that the cheftestants have cooked for them. I'm trying to learn an appreciation for this art form as I have for others that were strange to me. Maybe I'll get to take cooking lessons someday.

Anyway . . . long day. My unruly eyebrows and I must find some rest.
1. Misadventures from yesterday: 2.45 hour round trip to drop off Mark in yesterday;s storm. Much sitting in traffic both to and fro. The point was to borrow the car so I could make my first group therapy session. Depression! Anxiety!!! Come, we will help you cope. Except I got stuck in the driveway (thank Maude for 4WD); got out, made it to the end of the street and turned around because nothing had been plowed, it was snowing like a bitch and I? Am snow blind. Couldn't seen where the road ended and the very big ditches began. Came home, wrestled with snow blower for over an hour. High winds, heavy snow = snow blower not really blowing. Sucking but not blowing. And when it did blow, the wind made sure that it blew back on me. Not good for asthmatics to keep getting face covered by very cold, very wet snow. With ice crystals. Finally finished that, went back inside to get changed to pick up Mark. The rapid change in temperature set off some bronchial spasms, so I had to take some ventilin and wait for my lungs to calm down. Wait, wait, wait. I was able to leave at 5 just in time to get stuck in another massive frakking traffic jam. Crawled along to the next exit, figuring it had to be better on the city streets. Figured wrong. Wrongwrongwrongwrong. Oh so wrong. Slipping, sliding, doing some fancy wheel work to avoid cars trying to tag me. Took me 90 minutes for what should have been 45-50. Had to stop to get feed for the critters, but at least the highways had cleared some. Snow, snow, snow all the way home. I was glad that Mark was driving now, because I had serious problems seeing through all of that. We got home going on 8PM.

2. Woke up at 1:01AM, and never really fully fell asleep again. Plus my arm and my back and pretty much all of my joints were not good after the snow blowing episode. I had to physically lift and push the snow blower any number of times, and I'm just not as strong and/or agile as I used to be.

3. Got reprieved from taking the car again today. Mark went in late and first drove Dar around town on some errands. Took a Tylenol 3 (codeine, babies), and at least the joint pain subsided. Never did get fully to sleep that time, either.

4. Futzed around online. Composed that "25 Random things about me" meme on FaceBook - whereupon it promptly blew up and disappeard when I went to post it. Fuck. You. Face. Book.

5. When it came time to kick the cats out of my room, I'd found that Lexy had scrunched herself into a small box I was saving to send some Christmas presents to my brother. (Yeah, we still have stuff to mail.) Anyway, I had to pick the box up and shake it upside down over my bed to get her out of it. She really, really, really, really loves it in that box.

6. Chloe has discovered how to turn on the autovac unit in the kitchen. I heard a loud whirring noise; when I went to investigate, there's Chloe sticking her paw in the vent and pulling it out; sticking it in, pulling it out with the greatest look of kitteh joy on her face. She loves that vacuum suction.

7. Have to take the car tomorrow to take Dar's brother, Con, to a walk-in clinic tomorrow. Please. Let it stop snowing, OK?

8. LOST rules!
Janie Poo and her snaggle tooth )

She's become my constant companion, which is very sweet most of the time and a tad annoying at others. I love her like all get-out, though.

So I slept for about 80 minutes, and that appears to be all for this evening.
Why aren't I asleep? I took codeine, I took Tylenol, I took a half a sleeping pill, and then 70 minutes later I took the other half. Why, oh why? Oh, wait, I know. It's the goddam gall blatter attacks, I bet. I could be wrong, but I'm guessing I'm not. Frak. Me.

I haven't done more than cat nap for, well, this will be the third night. Not good. I borrowed the Jeep today so I could drive Dar to her dentist appointment this afternoon. This involves an almost two hour round trip both morning and evening plus whatever errands I have to run in between. Dar's appointment ran late (poor thing is having the necrotic bone in her jaw drilled out), and by the time we were heading it home it was after 7 PM. I'd already picked Mark up from work by this time and was going zombified in the back seat. I was shaking from fatigue, and then I started to disorient. Always fun. I got a moment of real panic when I absolutely did not know where I was anymore, but fortunately it was only a moment. I had to crawl up the steps at home and ended up just sitting there for a few minutes to gather myself. Verrrrrra weird night. That's how tired I was. And how tired I still am.

The LBGT community is pretty pissed off today because HBO failed to include the invocation by the Rt. Rev. Gene Robinson yesterday as the prelude to the We Are One concert. It was to be the primary official act of the Inauguration celebration, and it certainly was a sop to us queer types as an apology for giving Ol' HomoHater Rick Warren the invocation to the actual inauguration. So it appears to be a miscommunication between HBO and Team Obama with TO stepping up to take ultimate responsibility. HBO has said that it will from now on be included in all future showings of the concert, and I believe that they'll be rebroadcasting it tomorrow. It's supposed to be a powerful prayer - low on Jesus talk and high on social justice. Please try to check it out.

I'm going to let my hair grow out. I was thinking that I really, really want to get it cut, but then it looks good for about three weeks before it starts to get all nasty looking again. I'm going to let it go for a few more months and then get it cut all one length. At least it will grow out somewhat evenly, and if push comes to shove I can cut it my own damn self. Now the big question is: bangs or no bangs. I'm thinking no, but i'll see how it grows.

I'm making plans to go away for a bit. After Dar's brother leaves, so that should be about two months, I guess. I'm feeling housebound and trapped, especially since my car has been dead for a few months now. The stupid winter weather isn't helping; it's not like I can go take a walk somewhere or hang out in the back field. We really can't afford much, and I'm not looking for extravagance or luxury. I was thinking of throwing myself on [livejournal.com profile] sffan or [livejournal.com profile] dumbphilomel. I also have a book that lists convents and monastaries and other sites of religious retreats. I did that once: took a few days off and spent them in a convent in Biddeford, Maine. It was lovely, right on the ocean. And God knows that the price is right for those kinds of stays. Yeah, maybe I'll check that out. I'd love it if Dar could come with me, but I don't know that the both of us can leave at the same time anymore.

Sleeeeep. Man, it's 2AM. This sucks. I'm going to give it another shot.

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