that’s my song, once again

I’ve mentioned before that I will miss the sound of the train coming through our bedroom window in the evenings. It’s one of the things that I will miss the most in our new home. Like many, I have loved trains since I was a lad.

I’ve shared this before, but in the spirit of nostalgia, here, once again, is “That’s My Song” sung by the Smothers Brothers.

scaling back

packingIt’s amazing how much we’ve scaled back since we began this whole process in February. It began when we had to pack up and move furniture into the garage for staging. There was a lot of stuff that we realized we didn’t need that went to Salvation Army, Goodwill, and our local Hope Services. We made multiple runs to those places. Then there were two visits to the electronics recycling facility. The staging movers took Terry’s couch and love seat for a charity they work with. We had a scheduled pick-up from Salvation Army for multiple large items. And we had items to put out for Hope on each of their regular visits through the neighborhood every six weeks or so. We had an especially large set of items on their most recent visit.

Perhaps we cut back a tad too much. But in general scaling back is a good thing. It leaves room for the new in our new space.

real estate, north and south

The past few months have been an adventure on a number of levels. One of those levels is the differences in how real estate is done in the Bay Area vs. the Inland Empire.

  • In the Bay Area staging is big. As we know from our own experience. In the Inland Empire it is pretty much laughed at.
  • Up here we, as seller, paid for termite, house, and roof inspection. Down there the seller paid for the termite inspectionpacking only. We had to pay for our own house inspection.
  • Up here it is common to include the washer-dryer and refrigerator with the house, as we did. Down there it isn’t. We are getting a fridge with the house, but we’ll need to buy a new washer and dryer.
  • Up here our house was sold as-is. Down there, our realtor requested the seller fix the defects noted by the inspector.
  • The deposit up here is expected to be about 3%. The deposit we made down there was a token amount, less than 1%
  • Up here our listing realtor communicated with the buyer’s realtor by email and phone. Down there our realtor hand carried our offer to the listing realtor. (Though this is probably as much matter of local geography as it is of regional differences.)

In a nation we often think of as having become homogenous, regional differences do, in fact, exist.

all those “lasts”

As we prepare to move south I am thinking about all our “lasts” here in Gilroy, the Garlic Capital.

  • We saw Debbie, our long-time hair stylist, for the last time a week ago Saturday.
  • We had our last lunch at Ginger Café, our local South Asian restaurant, a week ago today.
  • I  no doubt had my last personal Guinevere’s Garden and iced tea at Round Table Pizza last week.packing
  • I suspect the take-out taco plate I got at Taco Mania on Friday was my last visit there.
  • I baked bread on Friday. Probably the last loaf to be baked in our remodeled kitchen.
  • Tasha had her last visit to her groomer Stephanie on Friday, whom she has been seeing pretty much ever since we brought her home in 2005. Stephanie was sad that Tasha was leaving town.
  • Our date night at the Milias restaurant on Saturday was our last visit there. And what an excellent meal and great date night it was!
  • We planned our last visit to Victoria’s Mexican Restaurant for next Tuesday, a week from tomorrow, not realizing that is Cinco de Mayo. However, our movers moved our move date to Tuesday. Since Donald “Elvis” Prieto only works lunches Tuesday and Wednesday, and since we  are in Hemet Tuesday and Wednesday of this week, Terry may have to get take-out that Tuesday in order to say good-bye to Don.
  • I hope to make one last visit to Rocca’s Market the end of this week.

We’ll have lots of new and fun things to discover in Hemet and Four Seasons, but it’s appropriate also to look back.

Sacred Music Friday: Jesus Christ is Risen Today

It is still Easter until Pentecost, which is not until 24 May. So enjoy this great rendition of “Jesus Christ is Risen Today” by the First Plymouth Congregational Church, Lincoln, Nebraska, sung by the Plymouth Choir and congregation.

we never would have thought

If you had asked me as recently as last December, I would have told you that returning to the town I grew up in was nowhere at all on my radar. Terry and I were going in a different direction. We had different plans.

MSJAnd if you had asked me, I never would have thought that Terry and I would be moving into a 55+ gated community. Why in the world would we want to do that?

In fact we’re doing both. The community has a lot of great things going on, and there is a lot of activity in the fitness center. We’re close to the tech hubs in Southern Riverside and Northern San Diego counties where we expect to find jobs.

It’s not what we had planned, but it’s going to work well.

just when we’re getting ready to leave

Why is it that nice, new things show up in your environs just when you’re getting ready to leave?

signgoneAfter Terry and I made the decision to move south, the vestry at St. John the Divine agreed to purchase a pipe organ to install in the church. The organ was something I missed when I left Good Shepherd Gilroy, and I would have loved to have been able to worship at St. John’s with organ music. Alas, it is not to be.

After all these years Gilroy now has its own Indian restaurant, and it’s not bad at all. We no longer need to drive to Morgan Hill.

Now that we are leaving.

And so it goes.

how we communicate

With all of my years in high tech before my layoff an important skill I learned was to understand how each individual best communicates. This was even more important during the last several years when I was working primarily and then exclusively remotely. Some people communicate fine by email. With others it’s best to set up a phone call.

So it is as we have engaged in the process of heading south.

signgoneJeff, our listing realtor up here, communicates very well by email. He does a great job of providing clear instructions in an email. For more urgent matters he’s great with instant messaging. And sometimes he knows that it’s best to get on the phone, as when we were making the final decision on which offer to accept.

Dorothy, our realtor in Hemet, puts up with email, but I rarely see an email from her longer than one or two lines. She is great on the phone, but first and foremost, she is an in-person kind of person.

My sister-in-law Bobbie, who has done a tremendous job of helping us out in this transition, is great on the phone. She doesn’t have an email account that she actively monitors, but a recent development is that she will text. I think that has to do with the fact that texting is probably the only effective way for her to communicate with her son and granddaughter. But it works well with me as well.

I glad that I am flexible. I can use any of those methods and am comfortable doing so. It makes life easier.

when our technology fails us

I’m always highly dependent on my email, especially so of late, as Terry and I sell one house and buy another. I was therefore annoyed last week when I started getting intermittent error messages for my primary email account. Then, on Friday morning, Outlook told me that it could not connect either to send or to receive. All this as I was trying to be accessible to move things ahead on both houses.

modemandrouterI got on the phone with my email hosting provider and we determined that everything was fine with my account and that the server was up. So I spoke with support at my cable company, which provides our Internet access. The agent was adamant that they neither would nor could block access in that way. I also noted that I couldn’t get email from that account on my iPhone via WiFi, but when I turned off WiFi it came through fine on the cellular network.

If it wasn’t my hosting provider, and it wasn’t my cable provider, it had to be my router.

I connected my desktop computer directly to the cable modem, bypassing the router. The email came through just fine.


When you have eliminated all which is impossible, then whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.
—Sherlock Holmes

I did a complete power cycle on both the cable modem and the router and now all seems to be well. But I still have no clue as to why my router would suddenly, inexplicably start blocking access to my email server. Really, it’s kind of creepy. Creepy in a 2001: A Space Odyssey, HAL 9000 sort of way.

I’m glad it’s working now.

Sacred Music Friday: Christ is Alive, another version

While looking for “Christ is Alive” set to Truro, which l shared last week, I found this piece of the same name performed by the Graduate Choir NZ. It’s rather nice. I like it.