Saturday, August 29, 2015

Fresh from the wars

As if having computer problems here in Jersey Village wasn't enough, we have had them at the SSB.  To refresh your memory of that place, it is at the end of the earth.  There is one family that lives past us, but they get to their place a different way - they don't pass our road at all.

We have to have satellite internet there.  Now, satellite internet is a small  step above dial up.  But it is better than none.  It went out last month.  I still believe since the dish is in reaching distance from the deck, my grands who were there (you know the WILD ones) managed to pull it even though G said he really didn't believe so.  I didn't call them last month.  This month (last week) I did call them

This is Hughes Net.  Lousy company and here's why:

They could determine that the dish was out of alignment.  The cost to have someone out to repair the positioning - $30.  This is the first company I have come across that would charge that much to repair their equipment.  I was flabbergasted.  To say the least.  So, since I had been thinking of upgrading, I asked if a technician had to come out to do that.  Why yes.  Well hey, saved a bit there.  But, alas this isn't the end of this story.

Of course the call center is in India.  They try to make it seem like it isn't.  These women must work hours to get rid of most of the accent (didn't work really), and use "English" names like Susan Smith.

I was working with one who simply couldn't find the service zip code.  I gave her the county and then the mailing one.  (We are so far from Mason that our mail comes - if we had a box -  comes from a different town in a different county),  To cut to the chase, after about 30 minutes we got to the billing address.  She put our home zip code down, and sent the installer to our house in Jersey Village.

This happened on a Sunday.  I called the Customer Service number back.  I was told they couldn't help me with this.  I had to talk to the dealer.  I was frankly pissed at this point, but called the dealer.  He told me HE couldn't help me.  Now I was beyond words.  I had to call CS back.  Again, and very snottily I  might add, they couldn't help me, call the dealer.  I was ballistic.  I  wouldn't have taken my blood pressure at that point because it would have broken the machine!

To get to what I hope is the end, the dealer who is in Conroe managed to get to the dealer that services Mason County (based in Waco??).  He was going to try to fit me in on Wednesday of last week.  I knew that wasn't going to happen.  We are just too far apart.  When asked when we would be back in Mason I told him the 16th to the 22nd.  Those were the exact dates he was on vacation - flying in fact to and from California.

We set the 4th as the installation date.  So we get to be on the road for another 11 hours to go back.  But if these guys had not gotten together to work for me, I would still be out of luck.

It is time to bring our Customer Services back to the States.  I don't think the people I spoke with realize just how BIG the country is, and especially Texas.  I have to also say that Hughes Net has no Customer Service.  I have to remain with them for a year (contract), but I will spent this year searching for another supplier of satellite internet.  I know I will never get cable internet out there.  Everything has to be satellite.  But I am going to be looking.

Today I called ATT because I am sick of the lousy internet I have with them.  I do have to say, I got service - after I had to call twice because the computer wouldn't give me a real person the first time.

By the way - have a good rest of the weekend!

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Trying something different

I am going to try something new here.  I am writing this in Word and will paste it into Blogger.  For some reason even when I try to avoid the built in mouse that is located in the center of  the laptop, all the text will disappear.

So much has been going on I doubt I can remember it all, but here are some highlights.

The day before Father’s Day, we were sitting at the SSB.  The grass was high and we had no working lawnmowers.  This is a problem because of the snake issue.  G was going on and on about how it seems the kids don’t care about the place and he cannot keep it up by himself.

So I intervened,   I sent both a text.  To cut to the chase, Brian (son) felt he was pushed out by Steve .  He thought  Steve was the preferred.  Got that straightened out.  Brian and family spent the next time we were there with us.  Our relationship with them has blossomed again.  Misunderstandings were straightened out.  He doesn't feel shunned and we don't feel shunned
Before Krissi’s people left for Junior Olympics and Disneyland, they were at a water polo tournament.  Three kittens were located – no mom found.  Both of my kids are rescue animals.  They waited until the next day  - went back and one had died.  So they picked up the two remaining living kittens.   Krissi and family were leaving for Junior Olympics and Disneyland in a little over a week.  She got a friend to care for the kittens.  They left on Friday, and Monday night she called in in tears.  Her friend had one of the kittens at the Emergency ER.  He was fine, and two hours later limp and almost dead.  Treatment would have run $1500 with no assurance he would survive. With calls to and from California and from me to the vet then to California - the decision was made to euthanize.

The next morning, I took the remaining one to our vet.  I wanted testing for feline leukemia.  While they said he was negative, it was not absolute because he could have still had some antibodies from mom.  There was concern about his clotting factor, and his distended stomach, but he was sent home with some glucose paste to use if he seemed to become too lethargic.  Keep him warm and remember he is so fragile was it.  He thrived for two weeks.  She called me this past Saturday once again in tears.  The second one crashed.  It was euthanized 
  Saturday.  His life ended like his brothers – in the same kind of time frame.  Sad times here.  They were really so cute.  But finding kittens that are two weeks old is a total uphill fight.  Since they were both males, with their deaths so the same, and the reading I have done – I really they had a congenital bleeding problem.  Probably it was hemophilia.  Kittens with hemophilia usually die at birth.
Katie’s team lost most of their games, but they simply are not as good as the California teams.  Water Polo is serious business there!  It is beginning here.

She didn’t make the Junior Varsity in volleyball at her high school (yea!), but she will be a varsity swimmer and water polo player this school year as a freshman.  That’s going to be interesting at least.


The 26th I turned 70.  Difficult birthday for me.  I now realize that contrary to my opinion,  my days are numbered on this earth.  Even after breast cancer, I thought I was invincible.  But guess not!  This birthday was really depressing.
Yesterday was our 47th anniversary.  Can’t say we are as we were 47 years ago.  But we have made it this far.
Using Word to do this has been different – but at least I haven’t had my text completely deleted (as many times).  Now the next thing will  to see if I can get it posted!!

Saturday, August 01, 2015

Still kicking

But still have the lousy internet.  That makes it difficult to do things.  One computer doesn't but up with it at all, and that is the one that is best set up for typing.  So that's one reason I haven't been here.  This computer will delete everything if I am not careful.

Plus - I consider myself a middle of the roader.  I have been reading some blogs that infuriate me, so I  have just not been rthe blogosphere  much.  Hypocritical and narrow minded people have gotten to me, so I have just stayed away..

I will try to get back.  I need a new mind set and get away from some of the bloggers about.  There are several blogs I really like, but I am finding myself on Facebook much more of the time.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

One month and one day!

Wow!  No, I am not dead nor maimed.  Things have been hectic.  Computer problems.  Travel.  Family.  All these things are eating my time like crazy.  I will try to get back soon.


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Checking in

Still here with the limited internet capability.  Hence - no pictures for all this time.

We are west of the Austin/Blanco/Wimberly areas.  We have had strong storms, but we are on such a high hill that if we even get close to flooding at the house, we all had best look for the ark.  Now we may not be able to leave the area if it were to get really bad because we have so many low water crossings between us and civilization.

My stress level is about 200%.  The storms have been strong, often with vicious lightening bolts.  I worry about losing power.  We are all electric here.  I worry about Clyde having to go out when it is pouring.  Or being taken out and NOT doing his business when we know he needs to - but he is a delicate little 75 pound thing that doesn't want to get his paws wet!

Monday Jersey Village/Houston got hammered.  JV has a history of flooding, and while we have yet to flood (knock on wood), I still worry.  It came up to the house on the street behind us the last time it flooded.  Our rental house has flooded, and I worried about our tenants.  I am not sure they still have our phone number here.  Krissi was telling me her car almost flooded being in front of her house - and it drains rapidly there, but not that night.

To top it all off, Katie and her dad were flying in to Houston as the storm was settled in there.  They had to end up landing in Austin, and after a couple of hours on the plane they were allowed off.  They ended up staying in a hotel for the remainder of the night.  Relief because Krissi was to have go to pick them up at the airport.  She couldn't get out from the reports I was getting via internet here.  I have just about used all my data on my phone!

Hopefully we will be going home tomorrow, but I am worried about that.  Right now Austin is getting hit with a severe storm - again.   The community (Cypress) just to our north at home got hammered with bad flooding this morning between 6 and 10.  


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

San Francisco/Bay Area travelog part 2

Beginning to climb just out of Denver  You can see the front of the train going up hill.

Being a South Texas girl, I am still fascinated by snow!!

Higher and higher into the Rockies

The beautiful canyons of the Colorado River
Donner Pass

From above Berkeley

Our chariot around SF - especially to the Golden Gate and Saucelito area

Didn't go in -   but the Palace of Fine Arts built on the site of a World's Fair.  These columns were part of one of the exhibits I believe and were re-purposed here. 

As if you don't know!!!
and again!  Katie told me she bicycled this when they were there, and it was a little scary!

And so brings part two to an end.  Somehow a really neat picture got deleted from this group and I will put it in with the next ones.  Either Blogger,  my computer or my album didn't want to add anymore for today.  So there will be a part three.

Monday, May 11, 2015

San Francisco travelog - part 1

We left Houston and flew to Denver.  Seems like a strange way to California, right?  Well it is, but the TRAIN we wanted to take - the California Zephyr - goes from Chicago to Emeryville - which is just south of Berkeley.  We were going to stay in Berkeley.

The flight was ok, but, as usual TSA was a bit of a pain.  The airlines clearly states that any medical equipment, prescribed by a physician, does not count against your carry on.  The first TSA agent told me I couldn't have my purse, small carry on bag AND my CPAP.  I tried to tell her what it was, but she was getting upset with me.  G, who like me doesn't want to admit he is hearing deficient, was talking in my other ear. So I gave up on my point and just "handed" him the CPAP.  There are things I always carry on:  meds, a change of underwear, toiletries, and perhaps a computer.That was all in a small carry on. 

Anyway I made it through the body scanner with it going off because of my titanium knees and  also the beads (????) on my blouse. But no pat down. Never had one in Houston! Ate l unch at the airport - good salad! Waited on the plane.

Now flying with old seasoned traveler, I ask if he wanted to play the handicapped card to pre-board.  I have a placard.  We  used it when Katie, Krissi, and I went to Riverside, California for water polo.  He said that since we were first class, he didn't see the need.  (since we fly less than once a year - we splurge!)  Well - the people began lining up in boarding group one.  There must have been 50 people.  Guess who was at the very END of the line!    t's pre- boarding for me from now on!

Got to Denver and slept poorly.  Time change (ahead an hour) and no clocks in the room had the correct time.  Our train was an early one the next morning.  But all was well.  Made the train in plenty of time - $22 poorer for the cab.

So I am going to jump two days ahead here to show you what was awaiting us in Berkeley:
The living room of the Berkeley bungalow we rented for the week.
Also the living rook



Dining arrea

Sitting area in dining

View from dining/den

Bedroom 1

Bedroom 1

View from bedroom one

also view from bedroom one

Hollywood style bath - toilet tucked away at left.  Pocket doors were a pain however

utility room off bath

second bedroon

second bedroom

second bedroom - the  house was set up in a circle - the living room is to the left

garden around the front porch

the landing for the second floor where one of the owners lives and the garden again!

roses as big as salad plates

climbing miniature roses acoss the front gate and fence

We really stayed in a spa like setting.  It was great.  When we went to SF we took BART.  But I am getting ahead of myself.  See you later with part 2!  So be forewarned.`