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November 6, 2000
a year ago
two years ago
three years ago

Working At Home

John was up at 6:30 and soon after he left for work I got up. I toasted one of the scones left over from yesterday morning and ate it along with some of the canned peaches that I'd had opened. One of my prizes from Costco was a surprise prize in a three-pack of Classico Tomato and Basil. The prize was a round, flat pancake of rubber, one of those jar openers, like the one my Mom and Dad had forever. I hadn't been able to find one in any of the grocery stores that we frequented, and hadn't really been motivated to try and find it on-line. Instead, it just fell out of the group packaging for the three-pack! Wow.

I used the rubber grip to open my jar of peaches and I was very happy.

Yes, I'm very easily pleased, which is a fun and good thing. And the cold peaches were just yummy with the toasted scone. Fezzik sat and watched me very, very closely and actually got some of my scone, so I toasted another one and ate that as well and gave a bit to Fezzik. He was coughing this morning. The coughs were deep lung coughs that frightened me a little bit because if he caught a cold on top of everything else it could get really ugly quickly, but I thought it would be good for him to sleep inside during the day, while I was here.

So he did. One funny thing was finding that his water cooler, outside, was frozen solid, so I kept his water dish in the house well filled. It's good for him to drink plenty of liquids to fight off the cold, I think.

I found that work was really, really easy without all the interruptions that I get at work. I got more done today, I think, than I normally accomplish in some weeks. A status report, a set of minutes, a design document, and two coding template mockups just rolled on out, with a break for chili cheese dogs (yes, Fezzik got half of one of my chili dogs), chocolate milk, and apple juice. Lots of liquids helped me feel pretty good, especially since I ran the gas fireplace for the only heat I really needed. The fireplace pretty much just heats the kitchen and living room area and that's all I really needed, but the house heating system is the one that has the humidifier built into its workings. So I did need the extra liquids.

The bar stool I was using as a chair made sure that I got up and stretched every once in a while, which was good, and that helped me remember to get some liquids. I was very happy with the resulting setup after I put a dictionary under the monitor. The counter is deeper than my desk at work, even, and the stool actually has some pretty good back support.

Fezzik napped, wandered out for short periods of time and banged to be let in when he wanted in and, all together, moved a bit more easily today than I've seen for a while. He had some problems, still, on the kitchen floor right after sleeping on the floor for a few hours, but I'm getting more of a sense of a pattern. When he's still for a long time he is just really stiff all over, when he's been outside and wandering around, even in this cold, or maybe especially in this cold weather, he actually moves a lot more easily. The real cold is still taking a lot more out of him. The day time temps today were in the low 30's and the night time lows are going to be in the teens. He sleeps a lot when he gets back inside.

By 3:30 I'd finished most of what I'd wanted to do, and I could think of more things, but with a napping Fezzik, I felt like napping myself. So I took an hour long nap when Fezzik decided he wanted out for a while. He did just fine outside and I napped happily in my very cold bedroom with my very warm blankets and pillows. When it was 4:30, I got up and finished a good number of the things I'd gotten to think about when I was getting ready to sleep, and I worked through to 6:30, when John called. Getting in a 8-6:30 day with an hour break for a nap and not spending a cent more on food or drinks was pretty keen.

I felt like soup and bread and so I thawed a bag of the split pea soup I'd made a month or so ago and frozen. There was half a loaf of ciabatta in the freezer, which was mildly freezer burned, so I pulled it out of the freezer, sprayed it with water, wrapped it in foil, stuck it in the toaster oven at 350 and prayed a little. It came out tender in the center and crisp on the edges and the freezer burned stuff just pulled right off, and it was perfect to have with soup. I poured a little olive oil and basalmic vinegar as well for the bread and it was really, really good. The soup had mellowed and smoothed out with the time in the freezer and it was still smoky with the ham hock, and with some addition of water it was that perfect, creamy consistency that only slow cooked split pea soup can have.

After our dinner, I took a bunch of the food mix and warmed it up a little in my soup bowl, added a small sprinkle of garlic and then mixed it with the dry food. Fezzik dove right in and even ate his vitamins and glucosamin tablets without any protest and then walked right on out the door without any problems. When he banged on the door to be let back in half an hour later it was without any trace of a wobble, so I think that today really was good for him. There's no more coughing and he seems to be very content. A good thing. He's moving a lot more easily, and maybe it's due to the cold or even his new food. It would be kinda cool.

In two weeks we're leaving for Portland for Orycon. I really hadn't thought Fezzik would make it that far after how bad he was in September, but it's starting to look as if he will with only the minor problems he's been having the last few weeks. His lymph nodes are definitely not getting any worse this week. John and I talked things over and we'll try and see if we can board him with the All-Pets vets, in case he has any problems they'll be able to take care of him and they love him a lot. I don't think it'd be fair to the Goodells to leave him with them when he is as fragile and sometimes unable as he is. They'll feed him his pills and he should do okay, I think. Still, it's interesting being able to plan that far when it all seems day to day right now.

I spent a lot of the evening, while John was watching Monday Night Football catching up on the journal. Sorry for the sprints, but it's astonishingly easy to write journal stuff while I have a computer handy by the TV, since I don't really have to pay much attention to the TV while writing. After I was caught up, John popped a bag of popcorn and the three of us sat and ate it. Fezzik lay nearby and caught what he could, and stared intently at anything he couldn't until it was flicked in his direction. Eventually, he got up and picked up all the pieces that were out of his reach when he was lying down and then sat and watched us gravely while we tossed him more pieces. It was really fun watching him as he was content, intent and focussed about what he was doing but not frantic in any way. Just patient and single-minded.

It was really keen to just watch him like that. He's still got his brain and personality and desires. It's odd having that as a very good thing and knowing that that could cause a good deal of pain if his body fails him completely and his mind and personality are still there, as patient and as steady as ever. Not that that is sure or even totally probable.

Mei called us a couple times tonight about her company name and it was interesting listening to John talk with her about it as much from deducing what it was she was saying on the other end as anything. I think it'll work out, she's trying very hard to figure it all out and do the things that will make her business name unique and fit her clients as well. Is interesting listening to all the ways it could play out. It'll be interesting to see if she really likes what she ends up with or if all the logic that five people can generate isn't anything like asking customers.

Sleep wasn't until late as the Monday Night Football game was very close near the end. Fezzik did go out soon before we went to sleep and came back pretty quickly, and then at 2 a.m. I woke up to his panting at the doorway, so I let him outside. A little worried about leaving him outside with the temperature in the teens, when I heard him on the stairs, I asked John to see what he was doing. He was just going down the stairs to meander about the lawn and bark at something he saw, and then he made it, just fine, up the stairs and lay on his bed and wouldn't budge when John went out to ask him if he wanted to come in. Both John and I slept really badly after that, John eventually went into the livingroom to sleep there as his tossing and turning kept me even more awake. Fezzik, in the meantime, didn't come in at all and didn't bang on the door to be let in. He seemed like he wanted the frigid cold.

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