Sometimes, I Just Need a Slap

For me, common sense often takes a back seat to what I think I need or want. Not a good thing, and it can be quite awhile before I get back on track.

For the last year or so, I’ve gone to bed between 8:30 and 9:30pm, and got to sleep before 10. Most nights I woke up between 2:30 and 3:30am, and might not get back to sleep. If I managed to get back to sleep, I still woke again between 4:30 and 5:00am with my brain advising strongly that there would be no more shut eye. My average amount of sleep per night in this mode was most always between 4 and 5 hours, with 3 or less on occasion.

Starting my day way before the sun comes up was enjoyable. The peace and quiet, no car or truck traffic coming through, just taking in the calm.

My coffee intake most days was 18oz. I would have a 10oz cup of dark roast (high caffeine) upon rising and an 8oz cup of “regular” coffee with my breakfast around 10:00am. Any more than that was a rare exception.

On a grocery run last week, I grabbed the wrong box of dark roast, getting decaf instead of the regular high test. I swore at myself for 20 minutes when I got home and realized my error. Rather than bring it back to the store, I decided to try a cup, liked it, and decided I’d have it the morning.

I changed my morning coffee routine. I now have the 8oz cup of “regular” coffee when I get up, and 10oz of the decaf dark roast with my breakfast later, so much less caffeine.

Guess what?  Bozo boy, for the last 3 nights, is averaging 7.5 hours sleep per night, with one wakeup of shorter duration.

I miss rising predawn, but think I’ll stay on this coffee intake plan.  With just these 3 days after that good night’s sleep, I feel more alert, slightly less forgetful, not as easily agitated, and I get more things done in my day (like this post, for example).

I Sorta Miss Ya, Ol’ Dude

There it sits. With it’s two beat-to-crap pillows, on a wet, winter morning in January of last year, waiting for the refuse company’s large truck to arrive and take it to its final resting ground. Our culture has regularly related humorous tales in many forms, on the relationship between men and their sofas, and us guys all see the truth in that.

I slept on that comfy bastard, nightly and most weekend afternoons, for at least 15 years. That didn’t do my back much good, creating painful wake ups in the latter years, but I couldn’t give it up. No, there was nothing wrong with our marriage – my wife and I were just very incompatible sleepers. I moved around a lot in my sleep, went to bed later and got up earlier than her. She snored loudly (as I was also known for on occasion) and a gave off enough heat to warm a cold room. It was like backing into a wood burning stove.

After dragging the sofa out of the garage and placing it at the end of the driveway, I tossed the two pillows on it and went back into the house. While getting breakfast ready, I looked out the window, and the two pillows and the line under the 3 cushions seemed to make a face. A pleased face, proud of its years of service. A content face, for no longer needing to support my bony ass every night. And a face anticipating a peaceful rest of its own, having lived a life with a thankful man.

The Shade Project

The guest bedroom in my condo had blinds on it’s only window that let in too much light, even when they were closed. This made for early wake ups. I went to Home Depot to look for a six foot long pull down shade that would block out as much light as possible and found shades rated as “Blackout Lighting”. Back home, I double checked my window measurements and the next day purchased the shade. It was cut to fit the window and I was given the brackets needed to install it.

After paying at the self checkout area, I left the brackets in their small bag at the register. I realized this when I got home, and drove to the local hardware store in town. I got the last set of brackets they had that looked like the ones from Home Depot. Once home, I discovered these brackets did not fit the ends of the shade, so I decided to go back to Home Depot.

I stopped at the self check out and asked a worker bee if they found the bag I forgot. He looked at me like I was from Mars, turned away without a word, and starting talking to someone else. I went back to the windows aisle and got another package of the brackets I was given on the first trip, paid for them, and headed home again.

These didn’t fit either. Back to Home Depot. I found the guy who originally gave them to me, and he instantly assured me I was mistaken, they would fit. My verbal response to this assurance convinced him to go back to the shades section with me where I proved I was right. The ones he gave me earlier were for smaller shades, not the larger ones. I grabbed the correct ones, paid for them, and went back home.

These brackets were the correct ones. The overall install, counting the excessive car rides, went from about 10:30 in the morning to 4:30 in the afternoon. This is the norm for me with these type of DIY activities. But the shade works as intended and does make the room a lot darker than the blinds did.

I posted this in the “Life” category because I couldn’t bring myself to create a “Life as a Hapless Idiot” category.

Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da

My wife and best friend, Elaine, passed early in January of this year.  A knock-down blow.  I’m dealing with that, but my goal is to reach the point where seeing her picture, or an event shared popping into my head, will bring me a smile instead of sadness.  Not there yet, no rush, that’s just the goal.  I’m working on it.

But enough said.  I share this personal information because this brings about some changes in my life going forward, and I plan to write about it all here.  I felt providing an explanation for these plans and events was a good start, and will not be addressing my loss any further.

With the good advice of relatives and friends, none of the big changes I have in mind are for the near future.  But I can start some preparation soon that will serve me well whether or not the path I see now comes to fruition or not.

I plan to sell my condo which I own outright, and get into a much smaller place.  I had originally planned to put the condo on the market in spring or early summer of 2019, but now have put that off for possibly a year.  It needs some work (some windows, some paint, some flooring), and I need more time to get that done and search for my new home.  If I can pull it off financially, I’d like to be living in my new place before the condo is sold.  The additional monthly cost for that scenario would be the condo fee, the electric bill to keep the inside temperature adequate, insurance, and whatever service fees for the heating and air conditioning system arise.  I know, this seems risky, but it would make things a lot easier.

My new place will most likely be a rental, the cost of which will be covered for years using funds from the condo sale.  If this new place is not exactly what I’m looking for it may not be my permanent choice.

That’s the plan I’m working on.  There will be bumps and stone walls to be encountered for sure, and the plan will be altered, but goals mentioned remain the same.  Wish me luck.