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Cool Weather in Freo

I just did a headstand, because I heard or read somewhere that you can’t stay pissed off while standing on your head. I think it worked, at least to some degree. I felt the need to derail the mounting frustration I felt as I failed repeatedly to get my scanner working with the new laptop. The scanner driver comes on a disk that has some clever “autorun” function, so I can’t just let Windows XP Install Wizard handle the job of finding the driver on the disc and putting it in the correct place. No…

Anyway, I don’t want to do another headstand on this hard tile floor, so I won’t recount the events that got me so frustrated in the first place. If I’m going to create new comics featuring my usual characters, it seems that the most direct route will involve getting comfortable drawing them with the Wacom tablet. I like to draw on paper because I like to look at my hand rather than at the screen when I draw, and I like the resistance and tactile feedback that a pen on paper provides and a plastic stylus on a plastic graphics tablet does not. Oh well, I guess I can adapt or remain stalled out on the comic.

The weather here in the Perth area has taken a turn for the Seattle. For most of our stay here, I hid from the summer sun in my air conditioned cave. Now, the air has a chill in it, the skies remain ever gray, and the pavement a grass never seem to dry before the clouds open up a new can of whoopass on the them.

I don’t post much to my LiveJournal, because the computer is not in a place where I can type comfortably. All of my long entries of late have been typed at the kitchen table, but I can only bring the computer down here to the table to use it when Logan is sleeping as he is now. Otherwise, any time he becomes aware of the existence of the machine, he seeks it out and demands that whoever he finds using it boot up Worms Armageddon. Logan very desperately needs a sturdy computer of his own. Or, more to the point, I desperately want him to have his own machine so that I can use mine in peace.

As I sit here, typing, hearing the click of the keys, feeling the cool of the floor tiles on the soles of my bare feet, my mind goes back to a time when I spent almost all of my time in the realm of the abstract, eating packages of Red Vines at my desk at Amazon as I worked straight thru what should have been the dinner hour. Sometimes I would spend 10 hours at the office planted in front of my terminal answering emails from angry customers, then I would come home, throw a frozen pizza in the oven, and plop down in front of my home computer to engage in ideological arguments with other people who also couldn’t seem to get out of their heads for half a second. Other nights, I would play Master of Orion II well into the wee hours, before catching a few hours sleep and then getting up and going back to the office to plug my head into abstract space there.

This morning, I followed Logan as he rode his plastic four-wheeler around the neighborhood. In a previous life, I would have been less than half-present with him. I would have diverted the minimal amount of my psychic energy to the task of seeing that he stayed out of the street, and the rest would have gone into the rehearsal or the re-hashing of some intellectual duel. Today, with those duels so far in the past, very little competed with Logan for my attention. He got most of it, and when I did let it roam elsewhere, it stayed within the realm of the physical. I noticed the comfortable cool of the wind and the whitecaps it kicked up out on the Indian Ocean that starts just two blocks from our home.

Now that summer is over, I have finally purchased the prescription diving mask that I’ve been meaning to buy for years but never did because I harbored the fantasy of actually getting my eyesight corrected with whatever whizbang technique they’re using these days. I’ve finally come to the realization that I’m not going to have it done, not any time soon. Some of the people I know who’ve had radial keratotomy or the Lasik procedure have said that it interfered with their ability to see at night. My night vision already gives me problems, and I can’t afford to be rendered useless as a driver when the sun goes down.

So, now I have a groovy new diving mask, a snorkel, fins, booties, and a rashie to keep the sun at bay, and the weather in the Perth area, for the first time in months, remains consistently unfriendly to divers and snorkelers. That’s okay. We’ve decided to fly up North to Exmouth where I can swim with whale sharks and manta rays at Ningaloo reef. We were going to drive up there, but road-trips with Logan remain a special challenge. He’s good for five or six hours at most in the car in a day, and when he’s reached his limit he makes sure that everyone feels his pain until we get him out of the car. When driving in the Northern stretches of WA, we could well find ourselves many hours from the nearest town when Logan goes into meltdown mode.

Having grown up in the US, moving South in search of warm weather seems like it should be a universal constant, but south of the equator, the reverse holds true. Here, we trek North in search of warmth and sunshine and head South in the summer months to find relief from the heat.

Ah, the equator. In a few weeks’ time, we’ll cross it once more and avoid the grip of yet another winter. Spring, Summer, Autumn, Jump, Spring, Summer, Autumn, Jump. If all goes according to plan, the next time we do sit out the winter months somewhere, we’ll be living in Spain, where, as I understand it, winter doesn’t wield the kind of clout that it does elsewhere.

Wherever we land, I want it to be someplace where I can keep chickens and have a garden. It drives me nuts; all the food that goes into our trash can. At our house in Port Ludlow, that food all went onto the compost pile. Now, it goes into plastic bags and then into a landfill. The flush toilet is starting to bug me too, even though all the toilets I’ve seen in Australia have two flush modes to save on water most of the time and then to really flush away the offending material when needed. Still, now that I know that composting toilets exist, I hate sending gallon after gallon off to the treatment plant. It’s just not necessary.

Lara has returned from the store, so it’s time for me to move from this machine to the stove-top to fix myself the hot chocolate that I’ve been craving all morning.

Later: The package read "Cadbury Drinking Choclate," It was okay, but more work than I wanted to devote to its preparation.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
uminthecoil
Apr. 14th, 2003 03:58 am (UTC)
the three minute headstand...:)
I hear ya...no tile floors....best to have a pillow handy...:)
I've never had any luck with scanners...well, except when I've used other peoples scanners...he he
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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