Thursday, March 29, 2012

H today...

Yet another picture on the way to the lake in Kunming.

It is pouring down rain today. 

I get up every day around 4:30 am.  I am wide awake by then.  I go to bed around 10:00 pm but today I will stay up past 11:00 pm.  I want to see if I can sleep later in the morning.

I cannot see my Archives on my Kindle page.  I think it is because I had to register each Kindle yesterday, and the email address I put for my Kindle was wrong one.  I keep getting the message that I must wait 24 hours before I can correct the email.  Instead I will be calling Kindle Support later this morning to see if we can correct this and also get collections back on each of the three Kindle that are under my account.  Nothing wrong, though, with my Kindle Fire.

I need to get a hair cut today or tomorrow.

Not much else happening here.


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

U today...

This picture was on the way to the lake we visited.  This is where they make the lions and tigers that appear outside of banks in China.

I took this picture from a moving car. 

It is near dinner time as I write this one.

I may go to Confession tomorrow. I have not been to Confession for many years. 

Today is the first day in long time I have not been busy. I did go get two new printer cartridges today.  Went to the library today to pick up two new books, one of which I ordered about 11:00 am today, and it was in by then.

I need to stop watching so much TV and read instead.

I missed watching TV in China so now I am overloading on it.

I am watching Ice Sculptures in Alaska now on Green TV. 

No rant today, but one may come tomorrow.


Monday, March 26, 2012

Monday, Monday, so good to me...

This picture is a big garden in Kunming China.

I saw two Oregon Meadowlarks in our back yard the past few days.  I had to be sure, so I looked in Birds of Oregon and sure enough, they are the Oregon State Bird.  Each of them were poking around the leaves in the back yard to find bugs there.  I tried to take a picture of one them, but all you see in the picture is his back which blends into the leaves and grass.  Not a good picture at all.

How was your weekend?  My weekend I stayed home to read and catch up on TV shows here.

I am getting through Raylan, the book by Elmore Leonard on the character in Justified, the TV show.

I sure hope the snow is now gone until next winter.  Three days after Spring began we had over 6 inches of snow on the ground in the morning.  Way too late for snow to show up here,.  This is all due to global warming and not global cooling as the right wingers say.

As you know I am a flaming liberal.  The only R I ever voted for was Mark Hatfield.  I have not voted for another R since that time.  There is no such thing as a moderate republican anymore. 

I still go to Mass every Sunday since returning here.  I don't believe what the readers and the priest say about the gospels, as to me they are just good stories without an ounce of truth in them.

The last week in March now, with schools here on Spring Break now. 

Have a great week upcoming.


Thursday, March 22, 2012

A True Winter Wonderland today

We awoke this morning to more than six inches of snow on the ground and the roads.  Most of it sublimed today so the snow is still around but not in such quantities.

This picture is a lake near my apartment in Kunming China. It has quite a few gold fish in it. 

I did finish The Orphan Master's Son.  It is a wonderful novel, and I really enjoyed reading it.

I am now reading Raylan, a novel by Elmore Leonard. It has the character from Justified as the main story.  Raylan is a U.S. Marshall who gets into as much trouble in this book as he gets on the TV show.

I hope to finish this book in a day or two as it is not a long book.

I made myself some freshly made O.J. this afternoon.  I cut in half four oranges to make the freshly squeezed.

We shall see what happens tomorrow morning.  I sure hope there is no more snow.

Spring was three days ago, and we are still getting snow. 

Do you recall we had snow in April in the 1960's?  I sure don't remember it.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sunday here...and it is snowing...

This is a sign near my apartment in Kunming.  Enlarge to see the English translation.

I just looked outside and it is snowing here. Not sticking now, but it is coming down hard today, March 18.

I am almost finished with The Orphan Master's Son, one great novel on North Korea.

I took a break and it was the sun was out.  It rained a few minutes ago.

I got a call from Bend, telling me about a dog there, an Irish Setter.  The price was too high for me.  I will continue looking for an Irish Setter around here.

Time to continue reading my book.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

H today

This picture shows some Chinese men playing mah jong on table in the street, near my apartment in Kunming.

 I want to learn to play mah jong.  I have instructions already but I could not find the game in China.  I will see if I can get the game here.

There is mah jong game at the Kindle store.  I may get it for my Kindle Fire.

I ordered a pair of running shoes from Amazon a few days ago.  I normally wear size 12 but these New Balance shoes are a little tight.

I know if I get a pair of Nike shoes, I need to get size 13. 

It looks like I should have ordered size 12 and 1/2 instead of size 12.

I am reading The Orphan Master's Son, a novel of North Korea.

I ordered too many books from our local library.  I usually don't order so many books, but this time I got five more books yesterday at my library.

Today I will call Bend about getting a dog there.  He has Irish Setter dogs, the kind of dog I want to get.

The weekend approaches.  So much rain....


Monday, March 12, 2012

Cold day to start the week...

This picture shows a store near my apartment.  The balloons are for the Chinese New Year. 

I walked along this street taking pictures of stores. Many stores closed during the 10 days of the Chinese New Year.

I am almost through Micro, the last book by the late Michael Crichton.

I watched the movie Fast Food Nation, a fictionalized account of a story in this non-fiction book.  I did not care for the movie, so I got the book again from our local regional library.  I will read it again.

I downloaded a new library book to my Kindle Fire today. I have not looked at my Fire for about a week, the battery was drained completely,.

I am going to Mass every Sunday (sometimes on Saturday evening).  I have not changed my thinking on what is written.  I told you already I don't believe in the virgin Mary at all.  The four gospels are good fiction with not an ounce of truth in any part of it.

Nolan and me will meet with the local Catholic priest here in about two months. to show him the three poems the late Raymond Geraths wrote during the 1970's and 1980's.  These are the three poems we put on the Kindle page.  Creation, an Epic Poem; Redemption, an Epic Poem, and Sanctification, an Epic Poem.  Here is a sample  from one of the poems:

To divide creation into stages
We find that there are three.
It carries down through all the ages:
The thought, the dream, the realty.

After Hell’s fire,
After Heaven’s void.
After God’s desire,
Not to be annoyed.

By, on empty space,
Where joy and laughter reigned.
To solve the case,
A summit veiling they deigned.

Love and wisdom spoke,
From the height of knowledge.
No room for a joke,
In this eternal college.

If you have a Kindle you can download each of these poems to your Kindle.  The first two poems are listed at 99 cents.  Sanctification is listed at $2.99 as it is very long poem.

What I show you here is the first part of Creation, an Epic Poem


Saturday, March 10, 2012

Weekend is here...

This picture shows the apartments in Kunming and in all major cities in China.

There are very few single family homes in China. Most people own and live in apartments like these.  They are what we would call condos here but called apartments in China.

The apartment I lived in was on the fifth floor with no elevator.  So I walked up five stories and down five stories every time left the apartment.

We had seven floors in our apartment building, the top limit with no elevator. 

Power in Kunming goes off occasionally.  One apartment building near me had both an elevator and a generator so when the power went out all around us, this apartment had power and the elevator worked.  This building had 12 floors, so it had an elevator.

Raining here today.  I plan to spend this weekend reading Micro.  I read for about 2 hours last night. 

Game Change is on HBO this weekend.  I read the book three years ago.  The movie concentrates on the convention that chose the crazy Palin. 

I watched a program on C-Span 2 that had the authors, the producers of the show and one of McCain's aids on it. 

No garage sales around here as it is still winter here. 

Daylight Time starts this weekend.  Remember to Spring Forward later tonight or tomorrow morning.

If I get tired reading today I plan to watch the first season of Dowton Abbey on my Kindle Fire.

After Micro I will read The Orphan Master's Son, a novel of North Korea.

Nice to have weekends here where we don't work.  In China, with no weekends like we have in the U.S. 

Have a great weekend.


Friday, March 9, 2012

End of the week...

This picture shows me with a girl.  I don't know her name. We were shopping for a new car and when she saw me she wanted a picture with me.  She put my arm around her before we took the picture.

I saw her one more time, at a restaurant a few days later. She waved to me from afar but we never talked again.

I made a mistake on the temperature for the fudge. I told you earlier I thought was suppose to get it to 324 degrees.  But reading the marshmallow creame jar I see I transposed the numbers, as it is suppose to get 234 degrees.  I made my second batch of fudge last night, getting it to the correct temperature.  It is harder this time, but not as hard as I want it to be.  I think I may be caused by me melting the chocolate instead of chopping it up.

I followed directions to a T this time, following directions from the jar exactly except melting the chocolate instead of chopping it up. 

I will not make a 3rd batch of fudge. I will wait until next Christmas time to make fudge again.

I lost over 40 pounds in China and I want to keep it off this time.

What are your plans for the coming weekend?  In China everyone works on Saturday and Sunday so weekends were nothing special there. 

I will check out garage sales for this weekend to see if any are near here.


Thursday, March 8, 2012

H today

Carrefour, the grocery store in Kunming (and Shanghai) have flat escalators in order to take your shopping cart up and down three floors of the store.

This one goes up and the other side goes down.

I took a long walk this morning to take my cowboys boots to the shoe store to get new cleats on it.  I then walked to Starbucks at Safeway to get some coffee.  This afternoon, it is much warmer so I rode my bike to get my boots and go the library.

I decided to order the book How To Train Your Dog Like Pro from Amazon as it has a DVD with it.  I got it from the library but I want my own copy of it.

I am sleeping throughout the night now.  I do not drink coffee in the afternoon at all anymore.  I do however, get up around 5:30 each morning.

I am reading Micro now.  You can sure tell it a Michael Crichton book, as he lectures at time about the science of the projects in the book.

Tomorrow morning is fudge-making day again.  I need to get some more butter at the store tonight.


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Hump Day today...

If you want fresh fish, you cannot get it fresher than this, live fish in a grocery store in Kunming China.  The same thing happened in Shanghai also. 

Some tanks have so many fish in there that I would never buy one.

I went on a long walk yesterday, the day of Dad's birthday. He turned 90 yesterday.  Today (March 7) is my younger brother's birthday.  Four days ago, on March 3, was my youngest brother's birthday.  Two of my sons have birthdays near the end of this month.  My ex-wife has a birthday on March 11.  An ex-girlfriend has a birthday on March 12.  My late mother's birthday was March 19.  March is a big birthday month for me.

It snowed here yesterday morning, but by the early afternoon it had all melted.  I went on my walk around 2:00 pm and got back home at 3:30. 

I am going to Mass again since returning from China.  I got a 1962 Missal from Amazon.  This has the old prayers both in English and Latin in it.  This Missal is pre-Vatican II. 

Not to worry though, I still have many questions about the teaching of the Catholic Church.  I certainly do not believe in the virginity of Mary. This is just the Church's effort to force down women in the Church. 

I do not believe anything written in the New Testament.  The four gospels, written by people we do not know, are just good stories and have no basis in fact. 

I am still looking for an Irish Setter puppy or dog.  I found a puppy but the breeder wants $1,000 for the puppy.  She is in Oregon City.  Another breeder in Bend wants $650 for a hunting Irish Setter or a companion Irish Setter.  I saw a young girl walking three young Irish Setters across the river here a few days ago.  I will try to find her again in the next day or two.

I am reading a book in my Kindle Fire about getting a puppy and training the puppy.  I wonder it I can handle getting a puppy instead of a full-grown dog. 

I also have a book here from my local library, Train Your Dog Like a Pro, with a companion DVD. 

I must go easy reserving books from my local library. It is a regional library and gets books so fast. 

I have finished only two books since returning from China, both library books:  Rin Tin Tin: The Life and Legend and The House of Silk.  Both are great books. I am now reading Micro, the last book by the late Michael Crichton. 

It is very cold outside this morning.  28 degrees but the sun is shining. 

I picked up what I need to make fudge again. This time I will get the temperature to 354 degrees to see if the fudge sets up right this time.

I got a new Shakespeare book yesterday.  It is The Oxford Shakespeare: Complete Works. I really like to read Shakespeare plays.  I joined a Yahoo group that is on Shakespeare. Right now we finished Macbeth.  I copy each posting to Word and then, when the play is done, I put it on my Kindle 3.  Next is Julius Caesar

I have a new book on my Kindle 3 called Shakespeare After All, a good book of essays on the plays.

Now that I am back in Oregon, I do plan on going to Ashland later this year to see both Shakespeare plays and plays by modern authors.  It indeed will seem strange going there by myself.  In the past I always went with someone but this time I will go by myself.

I got some Morning Joe from Starbucks Coffee.  I like my coffee black and strong.  It is so very good. It is so much cheaper here than in China. Starbucks in China costs me about $4.00 a cup for a cup of black coffee.  A pound of coffee there cost me almost $14.00.  I have some decaf coffee here if I want to drink coffee in the afternoon.

I know, such a long post today.


Monday, March 5, 2012

Monday now...

This picture shows how China grocery stores display meat, with no coverings on it, just sitting out there raw.  I never buy meat in this way.  You see flies around the meat. 

The next few days I will show other parts of grocery stores in China.

I was not feeling well last night.  So I went to bed early and got up at 4:30 this morning. 

I am listening to podcasts today as I work.  Only a Game and Hang Up and Listen, two sports podcasts. 

It is raining hard here today.  It was not raining this morning.  Watching the news last night (a very rare event for me) I see we may get snow early tomorrow morning. 

I am still working on The House of Silk.  It is a good Sherlock Holmes book, by a new author, written in the 19th century language.

I watched Fast Food Nation, a movie I taped yesterday, that bears no relationship to the book.  I am getting the book again from our local library to read it again.

There is a new book coming out tomorrow on white bread.  I have an long excerpt of the book in my Kindle 3.

More tomorrow on the grocery stores in China.


Sunday, March 4, 2012

Sunday now...

I made fudge yesterday, but it did not get hard.  The recipe on the marshmellow creame jar said heat it to 324 degreed F.  My candy thermometer said heat it to 240 degrees.  I heated to 260 degrees.  That was not hot enough, apparently. 

The recipe said it boil it for 4 minutes or until it got to 324 degrees. I boiled it for over seven minutes but it did not get hot enough.

This means I will have to make it again, this time to get the temperature to 324 degrees. 

Today I will go to the Shaw breakfast.

I am reading The House of Silk, but rather slowly.  I have to read Mircro by the late Michael Crichton.

I ordered a 1962 Missal for the Catholic Mass, for the old Latin Mass.  I got it from eBay.  It will be fun taking to Mass next Sunday.  With Prime membership it comes in two days.  So next Tuesday I get it.

I ordered two conserative Catholic books for my Dad for his birthday. He turns 90 on Tuesday.  That is what he gets from me for Christmas, his birthday and Father's Day.

Next week we go back on Daylight time. 

In China, as big as the United States, there is by one time zone for the entire country.  Kunming is the middle of the country.  In the winter there, it got dark by 4:00 pm every day.

The picture here is from the lake in Kunming.  People live on these boats.  I do believe they make their living from the lake. 

Not much else happening today. I went to Mass last night,. 


Saturday, March 3, 2012

Fudge today, not yesterday...

This lake is very big, but I showed you back waters of this lake in Kunming China.

This guy is poling along his boat.  Again, I think he has been fishing, but I was told there one cannot fish in this lake.

Saturday today.  Santiam Marketplace is taking place at the local middle school. I may not go there as it just vendors there. 

Tomorrow is the Shaw Breakfast.  I will probably go this breakfast to get some great sausage gravy and biscuits.  It is one of the best breakfasts around, but just before I left for China two friends invited me to taste their sausage gravy and biscuits.  Hers was much better than the Shaw breakfast. 

I have a big file of recipes I collected over the years.  I may punch 3 holes in each page and put them in a notebook. 

I was so busy yesterday I could not find the time to make my fudge. So this morning I did make it.  How long does it take to set up?  After two hours in my room it was still quite soft.  I moved to the kitchen table to cool down there.

I saw a dog walker across the river here yesterday. She was walking three  young Irish Setter dogs.  I should have stopped her to ask her where the dogs are near here. I may go across the river again later today to see if I can find her.

I am listening to Sonic Tap on TV on a station that plays The 60's Revolution  Great songs from my time a long time ago.

Great to have access to this blog, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube again. All were blocked by the Chinese firewall there. 

Many of the songs I hear on this TV station I already have on my Real Player. 

I made three CDs in China with songs for students there.  I wanted each of them to hear the imaginary of the songs. 

I found the Richard Harris version of MacArthur Park on YouTube.  It is one of my favorite songs.  Jimmy Webb wrote it, and it about a romance breakup with his girlfriend.  "They left the cake out in the rain..." is about him going quietly to her wedding and seeing the reception rained on half way through.

Sure fun to write again after being gone for over six months.


Friday, March 2, 2012

Fudge today...

Good morning:

This picture is from Black Dragon park, in Kunming China.  I went there about a month before I left China.  It is a gorgeous park, with many blooming flowers and trees even in late January.

Today I am making fudge.  I had most of the stuff with me in China but I could not get evaporated milk in China. So today I make a Christmas treat for me.

Yet another bifurcated night.  Ever since returning I get up between 2:30 and 3:00 am every night. I am wide awake at that time. I go back to bed after about 2 hours and sleep again.  I refuse to take a nap during the day as that will only affect it more.

Every time I turn the wireless on my Kindle it downloads books from my archives that I don't want on my Kindle. It happened again today. 

I get a free ebook every month on my Kindle Fire. So I got the first book of The Hunger Games.  I think I am entitled to another free ebook on my Fire so I will get the second book in the series.

It is great to watch TV again. I did not watch much TV in China.  I did watch the first season of Nikita and The King's Speech on DVD in China.  I brought back with me over 50 DVDs from China.  But I have not watched any of those yet. 

It is also great to hear English spoken again.  If I were a believer in the power of Her, I would say the foreign languages are what we get from the Tower of Babel.  But since I don't believe that or much else, I don't subscribe to that line of thought. 

The battery in my watch died during the night.  I will have to replace it today, very soon. 

Leave a note here if you agree or disagree with me.


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Winter wonderland outside now...

Hello again:

I got up at 3:00 am this morning. 

We have about an inch of snow outside now. I will take my camera outside later this morning to take some pictures of the snow here.

This picture is from the lake. Apparently people live in boats there.  I think they fish the lake, although I don't believe one cannot fish in that lake.

I am now reading a new Sherlock Holmes novel, called The House of Silk.  I have Micro here to read later. It is the last book by Michael Crichton.

I can watch movies and older TV shows on my Kindle Fire.  I have not watched any yet.  My Fire comes with one month free of Amazon Prime.  I am signing up for Prime once the month ends.

I do not know why I still get up so early in the morning.  I guess I am still on China time, so it better end pretty soon.