20 Year Reflections: Viruses & Miracles

Man playing guitar alone at home
A fun POEM — I am NOT the author — from 20 years ago about another worldwide virus that all of us survived!

I just found it typed up in a box of papers I had saved and thought it a great time to share. Obviously, I thought it clever and I thought the event was worth memorializing (as did, obviously, someone else). We need to take moments of levity during tragic times.  It is a survival mechanism that’s been around for as long as we’ve been self-aware.  EVERYONE survived this virus, the one referenced in the poem, but the fears were very real. Do you remember?  Can you name it?

I will tell you a little secret, I DID buy heavy-duty plastic and duct-taped my windows and sliding glass door, as so many others did. We survived that one, and most of us will survive this one, bettering our chances if we use Wise Mind, listen to the scientists, and patiently follow the guidelines given to us.

You’ve never heard any fireman say, “Everyone, run as quickly as you can into the flames!”  No, they tell you to “walk calmly, single fire towards the exits.” This is a great example of listening to the professionals, following directions, and patiently using Wise Mind to get through those panicked times and into a safe location.

Right now your safe location is your home. Your masks are vital, but they are not a replacement for staying home. Your gloves may make you weak and vulnerable by giving you a false sense of protection. Be aware, think it through, weigh your feelings and your thoughts before making decisions… this is Wise Mind it should be part of your survival plan.

POEM TIME!!!

THE NIGHT BEFORE Y2K

‘Twas the night before Y2K, and all through the nation,
We awaited the bug, the millennium sensation.
The chips were replaced in computers with care,
In hopes that old “Bugsy” wouldn’t stop there.

While some folks would think they were snug in their beds,
Others had visions of dread in their heads.
And Ma with her PC and I with my Mac,
Had just logged on the net, and kicked back with a snack.

His image downloaded in no time at all.
He whistled and shouted, “Let all systems fall!
Go Intel, go Gateway, now HP, Big Blue,
Everything Compaq and Pentium too.
All processors big, all processors small,
Crash away, crash away, crash away all.”

All the controls the planes need for their flights,
All microwaves, trains, and all traffic lights.
As I drew in my breath and was turning around,
Out from the modem he came with a bound.

He was covered in fur, and slung on his back
Was a sack full of viruses, set for attack.
His eyes – how they twinkled, his dimples – how merry,
His midnight approach though soon became scary.

He had a broad little face and a round little belly,
And a sack full of viruses that quivered like jelly.
He was chubby and plump, perpetually grinnin’
I laughed when I saw him, though my hard-drive stopped spinnin’.

A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
Soon gave me to know, a new feeling of dread.
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work.
He changed all the clocks then turned with a jerk.

With a twitch of his nose, and a quick little wink
All things electronic soon went on the blink.
He zoomed from my system to the next folks online.
He caused such a disruption – could this be a sign?

Then I heard him exclaim with a loud hearty cry,
“Happy Y2K to all, and kiss your PC good-bye!”

                                                                                                                           — Poet Unknown

I hope you had a little fun with that and that somehow, this little poem written 20 years ago for a virus the world was convinced would end life as we knew it — because all computers’ inner clocks were never programmed for dates beyond the 1900s —  helps you to remember the world is not ending.

And, in fact, the world is more alive than ever! Our atmosphere, the waters, it is all healing. Wild animals are making their presence known to us, reminding us that this is their world too. Some are even making a comeback from the brink of extinction. And we, you and I and all of those we have ever known, have woken up from a deep sleep of the mundane, our apathy, our arrogance, and our misdirected energy and now that we are awake we are now re-examining ourselves, revaluing the importance of everything, and reconnecting with our families, our communities, and our gods*.

Do you see them? Do you see the miracles happening all around us? Do you see people connecting with song whether from their windows on the streets of Italy or on the World Wide Web (we haven’t called it that for a very long time, but now it feels that way) singers and musicians from different countries to perform songs of faith together from their own shuttered up living quarters?  Do you see neighbors meeting neighbors they’ve never spoken to before? I do.  I see all of them and it is wonderful!

God turns everything for good. You’ve just got to be willing to be quiet, open your ears and listen for him, you’ve got to open your eyes and be willing to see them. And then, when you do, open your heart and 2seek Him. You won’t regret it.

(*Trying to be inclusive there.)
2And here is a poem by yours truly entitled, “God’s Child.”

The wonderful photograph was taken by Brantley Neal and acquired through Unsplash. It’s a great source for free photos under the Creative Commons Zero license, so check it out!
© MemeesMusings/B.L. Memee, 2020. All rights reserved.

April Fool’s Day Came Late This Year

danger-april-fools

So last week for Thankful Thursday I told you about my recent adventures in Automysteryland. If you missed it, please go read the post entitled Stranded-Not Stranded.

Well, I got my car back on Saturday and drove it the 7 miles home and then did not drive it again until Monday when I needed to drive the freeway an hour to get to Seattle and meet for my doctor’s appt. I made it maybe 15 minutes down the road when suddenly I noticed the check engine light was on. I had been without my car for nearly 2 weeks while numerous mechanics and mechanical shops investigated the cause of my mysterious problem. I did not have any problems on Monday, just the warning light was on. Nonetheless, I wasn’t going to take any chances. On my way home from the doctor, I went directly back to the dealership who had seemingly fixed the problem.

They checked the error codes and it said catalytic converter. He knew that was not really the issue because they had (as did all the previous mechanics) checked that. So, he said he thought it was an O2 emission sensor on the passenger side of the car. He said it would not impact driveability. I need only be certain to get it fixed before my tabs come due in January.

The next day I had another doctor’s appointment about 40 minutes from where I live. I got in my car and was ready to go. The check engine light was not on as he had “erased” the code. I was driving down the 2-lane road that is the only ingress/egress from my city, chugging along at 40 MPH when without warning my car started jerking violently forward and backward, forward and backward. The dealership was only about 4 miles away so I was determined to try and get there. Once there, I knew, I’d be able to get a loaner car so I kept on about another mile and a half when suddenly everyone was redirected back from whence they came. The road was closed in both directions due to an automobile accident. I was told that I would have to go in the other direction and take another, specific route to get to the dealership which was now only 2 and a half miles from the closure. I turned around and headed back in the direction of my home, but the problem mysteriously vanished. So, I kept going and took that alternate route. An hour and ten minutes later I arrived safely at the dealership. Turned it in and got the loaner for the holiday weekend. When I left I forgot about the road closure and turned toward home and, wouldn’t you know it, the road was opened. Perhaps, had I just waited there at the side of the road I would have gotten to the dealership faster and saved myself stress, time, and gas.

Anyway, apparently, the joke was on me. As now we are back to square one with the mystery that has been eluding mechanics with decades of experience for weeks now.

So 2 of my 3 reasons for a Thankful Thursday last week have been erased. I am still grateful that none of the plethoras of mechanics took advantage of me. The other reasons are gone. I am therefore grateful this Thursday for my loaner car. For without it, I would be spending Thanksgiving stranded at home, alone.

Happy Thanksgiving my minions! I hope you have a wonderful day and find at least one thing to feel truly thankful for on this day.

☀ Memee

Stranded-Not Stranded

Stranded-Not Stranded | Memee's Musings

Twelve days ago I was driving along when all of a sudden my car started slowing down on its own, it slowed, and slooowed, and sloooooooowed.  It felt like there was a chain attached to the undercarriage at the back of my car and that that chain was hooked up at the other end to a giant freighter ship.  I had accidentally left my house that day without my cell phone and just needed to get to my friends so I could feel safe instead of finding myself stranded.  I got off the arterial and slowly made my way closer to closer on roads less traveled and I did not stop, I rolled through the stop signs and eventually made it to the block the restaurant was on.  As I pulled into the parking space my car died altogether.

I went inside and got to work calling a tow truck.  Oh, did I forget to mention, it was a Sunday so all auto shops were, of course, closed.  My car was dropped off at one of the very best automotive shops in my county and I waited for word of what was the problem and how much it would cost to fix it.

The next day they telephone me to get more information.  And I told them everything I could think of to describe what was happening.  In my mind I was thinking, fuel injection system, or transmission, or timing belt… all expensive fixes.

They drove the car and nothing.  It was fine, no issues.  Tuesday, they drove the car, nothing, no issues.  Wednesday they drove the car, nothing, no issues.  They drove it in town.  They drove it on the highway.  They drove it up very steep hills.  They put over 70 miles on the car and it ran perfectly for them every single time.

So, on Thursday I went to pick it up.  They did not charge me.  I drove it around the corner and came to a stop at a red light.  And the car started rocking hard, jerking forward and back.  I pressed my foot harder upon the break, pushing it up against the floor pad in fear that my car would leap out into the traffic of the busy arterial that I was waiting to cross.  I watched as the RPM gauge jumped up and down with the jerking motions of my car.   When the light changed I crept forward and then, without notice is jerked again and suddenly I was speeding fast through the intersection.  I thought, well, it seems fine now so I kept going without incident.  Without incident that is until I came to the next stoplight.  Again, it began jerking wildly as the RPM gauge hopped like a kid on a pogo stick and then, suddenly the car stalled altogether.  So I put it in park, and hoped it would restart, which it did so that I could try and go back to the mechanic.  I was only about a quarter of a mile away.  It should be fine.  The car started right back up and I began driving, but next, it stalled out while I was driving down the road.  It just gave up and died.  Well, it didn’t actually die.  I was able to restart it again.  But the fact that it died while my foot was on the accelerator certainly added more stress to my already quivering-with-fear arms.

I did make it back to the mechanic shop and telephoned a friend to come pick me.  Now that the car was behaving badly we immediately took it on a test drive so they could see, feel, hear what was happening.  They did not think it was the transmission because if it was, it would be consistent rather than intermittent.  It was beginning to get late in the day and they would be closed Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  It would not be until Monday when they could try and figure it out and make a real diagnosis.

And on day eight of not having my car, they test drove it again and, wouldn’t you know it, it ran perfectly.  No warning lights or error codes to be discovered.  They began to suspect that it was the Catalytic Converter (the part alone costs a thousand bucks).  However, they had no definitive way of knowing that was the issue and didn’t want to replace such an expensive part when it was just a guess.  They recommended I take it to another mechanic who had another tool for checking the Cat as their tools were not indicating an issue.

So on Tuesday, my son drove me to that city so I could move my car from that shop to one about a mile and a half up the road from the first mechanic.  My son followed me in his vehicle and, at first, I had no issues.  I made it maybe 4 blocks and then I hit the hazard lights as my car was slowing.  I turned off the arterial road we were on and made my way to lesser trafficked streets.  This meant I would be turning left and right at various points (using my arm as blinkers) but at least I wouldn’t have to worry quite as much about being hit by another vehicle.  Eventually, we made it there, but not after my car slowed to a stop and at important moments too, both were mid-turn in the intersections. The second turn was onto a major road I could not avoid.  At that turn, it came to a full stop though the engine did not die.  I aimed my steering wheel toward the sidewalk deciding I was probably going to have to tow it the remaining 3 blocks when suddenly the car lurched forward.  It was very scary!  Had I not reacted swiftly I would have leapt onto the sidewalk and hit a decorative tree, it was that close!  Of course, thinking swiftly meant turning away from the sidewalk and back into the traffic.  I was lucky though, the timing was perfect to keep me safe.  I jumped in front of a van instead of hitting the van had it been a second later. We managed to get it to the second mechanic shop.  Another excellent shop.  And the next day, Wednesday, he told me that it was not the Catalytic Converter.  He too was stumped by what was causing the issue.  His best advice was to take it to the dealership.  Which of course I wanted to avoid the high cost of dealing with them for my 14-year-old car.

I would never be able to drive the car to the dealership, the closest of which was a 20-minute drive on the freeway.  So I called a tow truck and had it delivered to them yesterday.  I was 10 days without transportation at this point and felt grateful that despite the enormous price I was likely facing ahead, at least I would be given a loaner vehicle.  I have appointments tomorrow, Friday, that I had already postponed a week.

Today I get the call.  They found the problem.  And it was a remarkably simple one.  It could have, would have been discovered by any of the mechanics who looked at it before had the check engine light come on.  The dealership, in fact, admitted they got lucky in discovering the mystery.  The coolant sensor literally crumbled when their mechanic touched it. Once replaced the car ran perfectly so I got off easy on cost.

This Thursday I am grateful that I once again have a running automobile.  I am grateful that none of the mechanics who looked at the car ripped me off.  And I am grateful that the fix was affordable.

Here’s the mysterious little guy who caused me so much stress:

Stranded-Not Stranded | Memee's Musings

The wonderful photograph at the top of the post was taken by Christopher Windus and acquired through Unsplash. It’s a great source for free photos under the Creative Commons Zero license, so check that site out!

Something Amazing…

Something Amazing | Memee's MusingsIt is Thankful Thursday once again, and I have something amazing to share with you (and my future self)!

A few days ago out of nowhere, and I mean absolutely nowhere, I received an email from a gal looking for help on transcribing audio recordings. The pay is not significant at all, but I’m not working so it’ll help with gas and toiletries, etc. And it will give me the incentive to be on my machine every day.

Did I say every day? Why yes I did! She is a captioner and this is just for one specific television show. And it airs every weekday. And because it is all recorded in studio on television quality sound systems the audio is crystal clear. So tonight we worked out our little contract and I start on Monday. The televangelist  speaks slowly (which of course is nice, especially with transcription work), but that’s because he’s got a slow Texas drawl (which I will adjust to).

Tatiana and family, Annette, and Carol: your prayers for me have paid off! This is obviously sent from Heaven above as no one recommended me and yet here she is. And to be sure I recognized the sign, gift, blessing: it’s a Christian-based program! So I’ll be listening to the gospel as I work! Is that not absolutely amazing!

Follow this link to view more of my posts about what I Give Thanks For…

©2016-2019 All rights reserved.

I have two blogs. This one is Lovely!

one lovely blog-award
One of my favorite people in all the blogging kingdom worldwide is Carlos.  I didn’t think he could do anything more to make me cherish him as a friend any deeper than I already do. But now look at what he has gone and done… he nominated me, ME as being the hostess of a lovely blog and I am really touched. I don’t get a lot of comments from people on my site and awards are a rarity so getting nominated is big, but being nominated by one of the people who I admire and respect and who inspires me as a human being, well… that’s so swell my heart is now bound even tighter to him!  Please visit Carlos and listen to his Thoughts of a Trainwrecked Pineapple. You won’t regret it, I promise!


The rules are as follows:

  1. Thank the person that nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  2. List the rules.
  3. Display the award on your post of the award.
  4. List seven facts about yourself.
  5. Nominate 15 bloggers for this award and comment on one of their posts to let them know you have nominated them.

 

Seven New Facts About Memee:

  1. I am the kind of person that when walking down a sidewalk or across a parking lot or street, will stop to pick up earthworms and return them to safety, in the dirt, beneath a bush where cars and people won’t crush them and birds won’t eat them.
  2. I am the kind of person who instead of screaming at the sight of spiders, runs and gets a drinking glass to take it outside.  (It wasn’t until about 6 years ago that I realized the spiders are in the house for a reason… they’ll die of exposure, they’re inside spiders as opposed to outside spiders!  My bad.  Still, they cannot stay so I continue the practice, just adding a scant prayer/hope they’ll find a warm place to shelter (a wood pile perhaps?)
  3. I am the kind of person who will scream at the sight of a tiny mouse scurrying across my path yet at the same time will own, hold and cuddle a pet mouse or rat. They’re very social and affectionate not to mention cute.  It’s just that their movements are so sudden and so erratic it is always startling!
  4. I am the kind of person who will inform your children that they are doing wrong when you are not there to correct them.  I believe as adults it is all of our responsibility to make the world a better, happier, safer place and that the only way to do that is to treat each other with respect, dignity and patience.  I am not disrespecting you by helping your children find their way. I am respecting that your children’s lives matter, their futures matter and helping them find their way is respecting your great love for these little humans.
  5. I am the kind of person that will bend over backwards to encourage you and build you up, and help you see in yourself everything wonderful that I see about you.
  6. I am the kind of person who loves others unconditionally, warts and all, because it is those warts, those flaws that make you the unique and beautiful perfection that you are.
  7. I am the kind of person who is very lonely in this world.

Not the ending you expected? Sorry about that, but this world needs attention. Each and every one of us needs to do more for others and less for ourselves. Our world is changing every moment of every day and I do not like the direction we’ve been heading in. Please make the decision to do better, be better. Everything we do as adults is watched by the younger people in and around us. If you think that because you don’t have children or younger siblings that you’re not a role model you are wrong! Very, very wrong. Every word that you speak, every action that you take, what you post online, what you do in public, how you behave towards others, and how you allow others to treat you, everything, EVERYTHING is being watched, studied and absorbed for future reference by whatever child is within range of you. Even if you do not know that they are there you are teaching them by example. So please choose to be a better example today and tomorrow than you have been every moment before this moment. You will be rewarded.  We all win.  It’s what they call a win-win-win-win-win situation all the way around!

(I will nominate in a follow up post and link it up.)