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Old 11-04-2014, 05:30 AM   #15501
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Got up early to catch the train to New York City to go flute shopping. I've been playing the same flute for 25 years. Every time I get it adjusted I am sans flute-my old student flute is just awful. Was prepared to buy if I found the perfect flute. Spent all afternoon at the flute center and tried over 15 flutes. Decided to buy after all.

I bought my first good flute not long after entering medical practice. How fitting that I should upgrade the year I retire.

Lots of walking on very crowded sidewalks with jaywalkers, horns honking, and sirens. The noise made me tense. Glad to get back to my quiet house.


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Old 11-04-2014, 05:48 AM   #15502
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I went to bed at 8 PM last night and woke up at 6 AM. There is nothing like a nice long restful sleep, knowing I do not have to be anywhere on anyone else's schedule or demand. I love FIRE!

Today's plan is to dig up the front raised garden to thin out the variegated ground cover that has gone wild and add some more dirt where it has settled below the edges. I will plant tulip, daffodil and Asiatic lily bulbs ordered online plus some naturalized daffodils from my ground garden. I used to have all sorts of tulips in the front garden, but the critters eventually ate most of them. I look forward to a beautiful array of flowers in the spring.

If I have enough energy left after that, I'll trim some low hanging branches from backyard trees. It's getting tougher to duck down below them while I'm mowing the lawn and chopping up fallen leaves.
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Old 11-04-2014, 08:38 AM   #15503
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Originally Posted by EastWest Gal View Post
Got up early to catch the train to New York City to go flute shopping. I've been playing the same flute for 25 years. Every time I get it adjusted I am sans flute-my old student flute is just awful. Was prepared to buy if I found the perfect flute. Spent all afternoon at the flute center and tried over 15 flutes. Decided to buy after all.

I bought my first good flute not long after entering medical practice. How fitting that I should upgrade the year I retire.

Lots of walking on very crowded sidewalks with jaywalkers, horns honking, and sirens. The noise made me tense. Glad to get back to my quiet house.
That sounds like a really fun excursion, though the cacophony of NYC would make me tense too. It's great that you enjoy playing the flute. I tried to learn it some years ago but gave up because of the pressures of my medical career. I have a friend who plays a large instrument professionally and gets annoyed when people repeatedly remark that it would be a lot easier to carry a flute!
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Old 11-04-2014, 04:30 PM   #15504
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Spent a couple of hours today on the phone with the hospital billing department. What a mess. Also spent an hour on the phone with health insurance companies asking questions about policies (getting ready for 2015). It's hard to believe those phone reps have more than a couple of hours training. Just like last year, very specific questions, lots of contradictions and evasiveness in the responses, different calls lead to conflicting answers.

I think I'll have some wine with dinner.
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Old 11-04-2014, 05:42 PM   #15505
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Spent a couple of hours today on the phone with the hospital billing department. What a mess. Also spent an hour on the phone with health insurance companies asking questions about policies (getting ready for 2015). It's hard to believe those phone reps have more than a couple of hours training. Just like last year, very specific questions, lots of contradictions and evasiveness in the responses, different calls lead to conflicting answers.

I think I'll have some wine with dinner.
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Old 11-04-2014, 05:51 PM   #15506
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Took the dog for a walk on the beach - standard time is nice - it's light out when I go (after dropping the kids at the school bus)... Last week it was dark. Unfortunately, the tide was high so my walk was much shorter than normal since I would have had to swim to get down by La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club. (For San Diegans - at La Jolla shores - where the kayaks put in - was completely underwater up to the west edge of the hotel rooms at the beach and tennis club - I've never seen the water that far up the beach.)

So later, I made sure the dog (and I) got more of a walk in and we went to the polls.

I also did a bunch of Italian class homework.

Now I'm monitoring the kids piano practice and nagging them about homework.
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Old 11-04-2014, 05:57 PM   #15507
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I voted.
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Old 11-04-2014, 09:46 PM   #15508
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I bought a Lenovo Android 8" tablet for my wife. And of course, I had to spend time playing with using it, so that I could show my wife what to do. The doggone thing came with no user's manual, other than a simple diagram showing the location of the power button and the earphone jack. But the price is so low, and what the thing could do was quite amazing, so I could see how they could not even afford to have a real manual.

Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS, front and back cameras, quad core ARM CPU, etc..., it's all in there. My wife will be using it mostly to watch movies from the Web, but I think surfing the Web with it is better than on a bitty smartphone, and it gives more mobility than a laptop. And the thing can run and charge its battery off the same little wall plug as the iPhone! Son of a gun!

Oh, the camera function even has HDR capabilily! Not as good as a "real camera" I am sure, but anyone can see now why makers of stand-alone GPS, point-and-shoot cameras, and video cameras are going the way of the dodo birds. It's sad, and I am glad I am not in those businesses.
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Old 11-05-2014, 05:55 AM   #15509
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I woke up at 5:30 AM...in the dark. And again was thankful that I did not have to rush around getting ready to go to w*rk. Even after 7.5 years of FIRE, that feeling of gratitude has not worn off.

I got half my bulbs planted yesterday before my hands and wrists wore out. I still have problems with lingering tendinitis from too many years on the keyboard in my j*b.

My 1992 Honda Accord (164,569 miles) is now sitting by the side of the road with a "For Sale $600" sign on it. Mr B just upgraded from a 2002 Impala with 160,000+ miles to a used 2012 Impala, so we no longer need the faithful old Honda as a backup car.

It has a lot of rust on it. I used spray in foam and duct tape on the rear quarter panels to hold them together. I had a coat of silver paint put on it at very low cost last year to cover some weather worn paint areas.

It ain't pretty but it runs.

I wrote up a sign describing the usual vehicle features, and added a little humor...

"Looks like hell but mechanically sound"
and
"Very dependable winter rat"

I am still amazed that car still runs so well after 22 years. It has had new brakes and tires done in the past 2 years, so asking $600 is actually a heck of a deal for someone who just needs local transportation at a very low cost. I'll bet it's gone in less than a week.
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Old 11-05-2014, 06:46 AM   #15510
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T..... I have a friend who plays a large instrument professionally and gets annoyed when people repeatedly remark that it would be a lot easier to carry a flute!
I used to live with a bunch of musicians, many moons ago.

It was interesting to note that of the the various bands that hung around the the houses, the piano players, clarinetists, flute and sax players etc. all drove big Cadillacs, Oldsmobiiles, the drummers and bassists as in base fiddle, drove Pintos and other small cars, trying to stuff the drum sets and basses into those small things.
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Old 11-06-2014, 04:02 PM   #15511
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Two committee meetings starting at 8am - oh how I don't miss rush hour traffic

Grabbed a quick lunch when I got home, then sat down to catch up on e-mail, bills, etc. Long phone conversation as follow-up to one of the meetings. Shorter phone call with city utility department still trying to fix a billing issue from the summer when someone else tried to "start" the utilities at our house in their name (the names of the streets are similar, but not THAT similar!).

Went out to get the mail and found a box at the front door addressed to me but from an outfit I'd never heard of in NM. Opened it and discovered a fresh emu egg. Interesting, but who ordered it and was it really meant for me? Called them up and turns out DS had ordered it for my birthday back in September, but emu egg season doesn't start until late October. Here's what it looks like Fresh Emu Egg for Eating: Ostrich Farm | Ostrich Egg | Rhea Meat | Emu Oil Products. Now I get to look up emu egg recipes. But very creative on DS's part, I'll have to give him that.

We'll be having an early dinner (lemon pepper catfish and swiss chard) and then heading (back) downtown for the taping of this week's Wait Wait Don't Tell Me. Very lucky to get tickets - it sold out in hours. We went the last time it taped in Austin and nearly peed our pants. Looking forward to some good laughs tonight!
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Old 11-06-2014, 04:10 PM   #15512
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As a sneak preview of sorts of our upcoming Baja trip, I walked into town to get ingredients for tortilla soup. Won't seem right not having a couple of cold Pacifico's as well, but we made a "no alcohol" pact until we arrive in Cabo. We will make up for it then. We always do.

This soup is gonna be SPICY.
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Old 11-06-2014, 05:49 PM   #15513
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Picked up another building permit for additional work being done on the house. Took DD to get the donut tire that was put on her car taken off and her other tire put back on. It needed a new stem, I think they called it. Went to a stone place and brought home 3 quartz samples for the new kitchen counter top. Made a decision on which one to get. Talked to the contractor about problems they found when they tore off the old siding. We are going to sleep on it, but we are probably going to get a new roof also. It is amazing what you find, when you are having remodeling done on your house.
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Old 11-06-2014, 07:06 PM   #15514
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Started remodeling the lighting over our bar. DW got new pendants/ track lighting almost 4 years ago. I'm just now getting around to ripping out old can lights, rewiring, and installing the new lighting.
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Old 11-06-2014, 08:59 PM   #15515
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Been learning this song...

http://youtu.be/eoSn2Y-b6wI

Have the guitar part down, but the vocals are out of my range...


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Old 11-06-2014, 10:20 PM   #15516
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Was up at 6:20 am to get picked up by a neighbor/friend at 7 am to do our weekly golfing group. Breakfast, travel, golf, 19th hole, travel home. Got home about 3pm. Good day, weather was ok, good company and I played ok (same ball all day) and won one of the closest to the pin holes (only one to get on the green on a long 170+ yard uphill par 3).

And yes, I missed the putt but it was a long one (40') and uphill.

Working on insulating our garage tomorrow, going to look at a condo for DD and then off to a men's college hockey game tomorrow night.
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Old 11-07-2014, 05:04 PM   #15517
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Last night, I went to see Lake Street Dive. They were incredible, as I knew they would be.

But the real surprise was their opening act, which was a guy named Jesse Harper, who I'd never heard of. He earned a CD purchase from me. And a call for an encore from the audience - imagine!

Between the two, a great show to attend.
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Old 11-07-2014, 09:42 PM   #15518
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Went to a memorial service/celebration of a dear friend. Died at 63 from pancreatic cancer, 3 months after the diagnosis.

She was miserable in her job the last few years. I tried to help her figure out if she could retire "early". She thought she had to work till 65 to get medicare. I told her between Cobra and ACA she would be fine, but she didn't really understand.

It's heartbreaking to me that my friend had to spend her last few years in a stressful and nonrewarding job.

This is the second memorial service of a friend and fellow mom in her early 60's that I've attended in the past 3 years. I hate cancer.

Life is short, all you folks suffering from OMY syndrome.
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Old 11-07-2014, 10:57 PM   #15519
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I am sorry for your loss, GardenFun.
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Old 11-07-2014, 10:59 PM   #15520
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A long-time friend of my wife died a few years ago of cancer at 60. They had been friends for 30 years. She should be FI, but thought she should work a few more years when her 401k shrunk during the 2008 crash. It's sad.

A friend in college, who was also my best man at the wedding, died of liver cancer in his 50s. As we lost contact, I did not know about it until much later through his brother.
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