Summer of Anticipation

More than any other season summers seem to have themes. At least this is true in my life. 2017 was The Glide Path to Retirement. 1979 was The Time of Red Wine and Steamer Clams. 2005 was The Return to US Bank.

This summer, 2018, has been the Summer of Anticipation. In May an echocardiogram showed severe aortic stenosis. A condition which if left untreated has a death rate of over 80% within five years.  Fortunately, it is a treatable condition. As this appears I’m in the hospital for a TAVR – transcatheter aortic valve replacement.  From May until now I’ve been going through diagnostic testing to assure I’m fit for the procedure and waiting for the next step.

Today is the final step and my Summer of Anticipation draws to a close.

Four Day Earworm is Cruel not Cool

This earworm, marimbas (I think) and female harmony singing “cool, cool samba” (again, I think), had drifted in and out of my brain recently. Such a fragment is resisting searches. Quickly it became evident “cool samba” is not the real lyric. There is a small bit of certainty – it is from the 80s, probably early to mid-80s.

Gar! What is it?

Update: Found it, Cruel Summer from Bananarama. My earworm did not include the bass line with the marimbas.

Breaking Broken Update: My Own Recognizance

Released on my own recognizance.

On September 17 I broke my right leg in multiple places. Breaking a leg is major trauma. For weeks, well months, I didn’t walk. However, healing progress happens. The physical therapist feels I’m making enough progress to continue on my own. We’ll have a assessment appointment in May or June. Which means:

Treatment is complete. All the rest of the healing is up to time and me exercising.

Valentines Day for a Vegetarian

My wonderful wife has been a vegetarian for over 40 years. Like so many I planned a special Valentine’s Day meal.

We went to a BBQ place. She ordered one of their signature platters and loved it.

How so? The place was Homegrown Smoker, a vegan BBQ joint. BBQ purists are rolling their eyes at this oxymoron. The rest of us are just enjoying the fantastic food there. The fu-fish (nori breaded tofu) is better tasting than the fried fish you’ll find in some places. The gritz stix, deep fried cheesy grits, are a solid delight on their own. Homegrown Smoker has a variety of protein sources. Anyone with a bit of open mind can find one to taste.

First Loaf

Many people obsess on their 401(k) and IRA balances when preparing for retirement. They would do well to obsess on activities. This was central to my planning. The finances were on auto-pilot. The what to do and when to do it took a lot more thought. It’s more personal than financial planning. We each have a fairly unique set of interests.

One of the activities I’ve planned is more cooking. Lots more cooking. This loaf, Irish Soda Bread, is a start. I’ve not baked bread in years, may be even decades.

First loaf of Irish Soda Bread, December 27, 2017.
First loaf of Irish Soda Bread, December 27, 2017.