Hell of a Guy
I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have. - Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Back to Toronto…


Have you ever had weeks where you felt you accomplished nothing at all?  This past one was exactly that for me.  I did little and accomplished less than that.  It all started with the demise of my cell phone when I was here in the Land of the Maple Leaf last weekend.  I think from that point I created (for I am totally responsible for what happens to me in my life) a downward spiral.  “Down, down, down into a burning ring of fire.”

Last Monday evening just as I was about to turn off the light in my hotel room and hit the sack, all hell broke loose.  Part of the ceiling in bathroom of my hotel room gave way, and a torrent of water came crashing down on the bathroom floor.  I thought for a moment Niagara Falls had relocated itself.  Water was everywhere with even more dripping through the light fixture over the sink.  This happened about 10:30 and by 11:00 I was in another room – a two-room suite.  The part of the ordeal wasn’t shabby.

Tuesday morning I awoke and prepared to go to the airport for a 10AM flight back to Washington-Dulles.  It was 5:30.  I wanted to catch the 6:30 shuttle just to allow plenty of time to check-in and get through Customs.  Since this is my first visit here in a very long time I wanted to make sure I didn’t miss my flight home.  Well, I did not.  In fact I had about two hours to spare, even though the shuttle ran late.  The flight was on time and I got back to DC at the exact time the flight itinerary indicated.  This is not the norm with flight travel these days. 

When I got to my car, I plugged my car charger into the cell phone, but it did not allow the cell phone to work.  I stopped at a Sprint store on the way home to get my cell phone checked out.  The dude I spoke to put a new battery in it and it seemed to work just fine.  It was short lived.  After a few phone calls on twenty-nine mile drive to the Farm, it ran out of juice.  I, again, tried to charge it in the car…no luck, it was dead.  So, Wednesday morning on my way to Snow Shoe, WV and another conference (mainly to pick up The Nancy and bring her home) I made a twenty-plus mile detour and bought a new cell phone for a whopping $37.00.  Fat and happy, but a little disappointed my old phone contact list couldn’t be transferred to the new phone, I continued on my way.  Another cell issue ensued.  My charger (plug in type, not car) was fried as well, and would not charge the cell phone.  Of course I discovered this when I got to Snow Shoe, some four hours from the Sprint store.  But, it didn’t much matter one way or the other inasmuch as I could not get service at Snow Shoe, so the phone was rendered useless, too!  I got little done at Snow Shoe except consume copious quantities of beer and hob-nob with some people who are no longer my customers.  Nonetheless, I was there and I got to represent my company in a fashion.

The Nancy and I were to board a plane at noon on Friday to Toronto for a weekend conference.  We will be here until Tuesday and I need my cell phone to work.  There was no way I could get back to the Sprint store Tuesday morning before our flight to pick up another charger, so I went Monday evening after we returned from Snow Shoe.  New charger in hand, at a cost of $5 more than the new cell phone cost me. I was set for my trip.

The fried cell phone replacement and charger cost me three trips to the Sprint store, $79.00 out of my pocket, and at least eight hours of my time and four days of consternation and nearly lacking in positive results.  I was ticked, but I know I created all of this for myself. 

Isn’t it funny how we bring this stuff on and immediately want to take it out on everyone around us?  I was somewhat out of sorts and tried to take everyone down with me.  It’s all behind me now, and truly a wonder The Nancy didn’t whack me over the head with my burned out charger.  I bet she wanted to do it more than once. 

And that is all I have to say about that…

Monday, October 08, 2007

Panic in Toronto


I am breathing heavily; my heart is pounding at an unnatural rate.  I am sitting here in my Toronto hotel room having a huge panic attack, and this is new ground for me.  My damn cell phone is the cause of this uneasiness – it quit.  Kaput!

You know, for over fifty years I lived without celluar technology.  What hath God wrought?  I also made it without this damn laptop for longer than that.  I made it forty-three years without a fax machine, for crying out load.  These days I cannot live without these gadgets.  I am hopelessly under their control - mesmerized.  That’s pretty daggone sad, isn’t?  Talk about conspiracies!  We have all been programmed.  It must be Bush doing this.  I wasn’t dependent on any of these things before he became president.  Damn Republicans.  Hillary will fix this mess, right?

Maybe it’s Al Gore’s fault?  He invented the internet, you know!

All kidding aside, this really sucks.  I am truly panicking.  This is not fun, but the funny thing is I am due for a new cell phone, a Blackberry, because my company wants me to be more connected.  It’s an electronic umbilical cord.  Big Brother lives. 

And that is all I have to say about that…

Friday, October 05, 2007

The West Virginia Symphony


The title may conjure up a mental picture for some of you: perhaps some of you will see in that picture a bunch of people dressed in coveralls and flannel shirts with straw hats chewing on a stem of grass or big wad of tobacco.  Perhaps you can picture them sitting on milking stools playing instruments like banjos and harmonicas, comb kazoos, maybe even a washboard or a wash-tub base fiddle.  This scene of a crowd of hillbillies playing music from Deliverance and Hee Haw is pretty funny but oh so far from the truth.

The Nancy and I were given tickets to see The West Virginia Symphony in concert right here in Beautiful Downtown Berkeley Springs (aka Town of Bath), population 711.  A couple of times each year the Symphony, now in its 68th year, goes on a road show of sorts.  This year the Symphony chose little Berkeley Springs as the venue for its on-the-road concert.

This was a first for both of us.  I had never been to a concert of this type or this quality.  I was amazed by the whole thing, nearly left speechless by both the skill and talent exhibited by the orchestra, and most definitely by the quality of the music and the sound picture painted by the musicians’ instruments.  It was as if I was in a dream.

I have always found it quite easy to get lost in the story line of a book, as if I were actually and literally sucked into the story and the scenes.  I found this to be true of the Symphony, as well.  I was taken up by the beauty of the music and lost in a melodic trance – an out of body experience.  We listened as the orchestra took us on a voyage of Romantic Masterpieces by Wagner, Dvorak and Rachmaninoff, and were both saddened as the last notes were played, but nonetheless invigorated as we left the auditorium.  We cannot wait to do this again, but next on our list, I think, is an Opera.  We hillbillies ain’t nothing but uptown.

And that is all I have to say about that…   

Page 2 of 2 pages  < 1 2