Who am I kidding? There are always worries. But in this case, I mean I do not have cancer. Thank you for your kind words when I was worried about it. Thank you also for being exactly the kinds of friends I appreciate the most, and not freaking out about it. I am fine. I unexpectedly had house guests all weekend, including a sister-in-law who is an ER nurse, so I was occupied and cared for.
I still can’t bring myself to do a One Year Later post and talk about the big day for me, March 12th, when the pandemic became real for me. Also, I have one final project remaining and I simply don’t have time to mess around with my blog. But I had to come today, to let you all know, in case anyone was worrying.
A lot happened in a week too! For Practicing Anthropology I had to create a career portfolio and I used WordPress because I’m already familiar with the tools. It’s like a visual resume, but more fun. Here, take a look if you are interested: Crystal M. Trulove Career Portfolio – Conscious Engagement (crystaltrulove.com)
My next project is going to look at cemeteries and burial goods to learn about worldviews of residents of the Pacific Northwest Coast people from about 2000 BC to the time of contact with white people. It’s only a simple term paper, so it won’t be groundbreaking, just fun.
Then finally I will get a break to get outside and start doing needed spring work on my property.
My new brother Tanner (I call him “new” because prior to him taking a DNA test, we did not know each other existed) and his family were here all weekend. Two teenagers and three in-the-house dogs. It was a big change from my usually very quiet and predictable life with Racecar. Racecar, by the way, is a diva, and detests all non-human creatures. I kept her locked in the master bedroom all weekend. At one point, the littlest dog wandered into the bedroom and promptly got pounced by the cat! So I had to keep the dogs protected from my Diva.
Anyway, we were lucky and the sea lions were here, so we got to go down to the tiny Rainier Marina and watch them. My sister-in-law Laurie was joking about them being river squirrels for the dogs to chase. But only the smallest dog seemed interested in the river squirrels. Most of the time the dogs ignored them. We people did not ignore them.
I have been taking care of a few tasks around here. One of them is a renewed burst of inspiration to rid my property of these destructive moles. Holy moly they tear up the earth. I mean, they seriously tear it up so much. They can dig 18 feet of tunnels in an hour! All that dirt needs to go somewhere, so I have a vast landscape of mole mountains that kill the grass, put big rocks on the surface for my lawn mower blades to get chipped on, and just look terrible. Tanner and his son were interested in trying the next two methods on my list: trapping and flooding.
I’ve tried traps before, to no avail. I simply cannot get the spike kind to work. During a recent eye exam my optometrist recommended scissor-traps, and gave me step by step instructions on how to set them. And if you can’t take varmint advice from your optometrist, then I ask you- who CAN you get advice from? Tanner and I followed the instructions and set the two traps I had purchased. Then we hauled my long hose over to a different spot in the yard from the traps, and I turned them loose with it. By uncovering the mounds we could access the tunnel system. Then we put the hose in there and turned the water on full blast. The idea was to hold a shovel at the ready, and whack-a-mole when they escaped the flooded tunnel. It was very very cold out so I left them to it and went back in the house. After an hour they came back inside too. No moles.
But the traps worked! Well, one sprung and didn’t catch anything. But the other one caught a monster of a mole. Seriously, the biggest mole I have ever seen.
About 15 minutes after my brother’s family left to continue their Spring Break vacation, the construction guys showed up to work on my awning. Two years ago…three?…I had my roommate tear down the shed attached to the side of the house because it was full of termites. That left the back door of the house exposed to the weather. So far, I don’t think rain is coming in that door, but it’s a poor set up over all. The steps are plywood and touch the wood of the house, so eventually, it’s all gonna rot. My hired man is going to rebuild the steps after the awning is done.
Yesterday I spent the entire day helping Frank, a Cherokee elder with stuff. First of all I took him to the VA Hospital to get his second COVID-19 shot. Yay!! He’s 89 and in relatively good health, but in a high risk category despite that, so it’s a relief to get him fully vaccinated. I was able to get an appointment for my first shot too! VA is allowing people as young as 45 to get shots, and that includes me. So Friday is my day. I’m curious about how it will go. When I used to get mandatory flu shots in the military, I always got sick (even though YES every healthcare provider swears it’s impossible, but still, it happened). I got sick 100% of the time after a flu vaccination, and when I got out of the military I swore I would never get another flu shot in my life, and I haven’t. But… I guess technology may have improved and I am getting older, and I am ready to get the COVID-19 shot in any case.
Then Frank wanted me to help him bring his old flip phone back to life. At his last VA visit, while he was with the doctors, I was on the phone with Tracfon for about an hour. Finally they decided to send a new SIM card. It had arrived, and on this visit I was on the phone with them again, getting the phone set up. His vision is poor and reading anything – much less strings of numbers for phone ID and purchase of minutes – is practically impossible. But we got it up and running. I hope. Then he explained that his brother is now unable to get groceries for him and he’s been considering a delivery service from Fred Meyer. So again, all of this is next to impossible for his vision level, so I created a Fred Meyer account for him which required finding his email which he never uses because he can’t see it. There were over 17,000 unread messages. I told Frank to get on those unread messages, “Chop! Chop!” Then he walked around his house calling out: “Cranberry juice, 64 ounces.” and “Dishsoap – store brand.” Etcetera, till we had his order completed. I scheduled it for right away. I’ll call him today and see if it worked. It would be nice if he could independently get his goods this way in the future.
Last evening after I got home I actually managed to read two academic articles about burial goods on the southwest coast of British Columbia before I was too sleepy to go on. And now this morning, I need to read more articles. Talk atcha’ later.