It’s Been A Year

It’s Been A Year

2018 has been quite a year in the RB49 Universe.  We survived just fine, but not without some bumps and bruises.  Well, whose life doesn’t have some bumps?

On January 2, we got a new Grand-Niece, when my nephew became a Dad.  She’s a cutie, and I’m going to her first birthday party tomorrow.

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Also in January, I received a promotion and a raise in salary at my job as a Buyer at an aerospace company.  Later in the year, I received another raise in salary.  But along with that promotion came lots of new responsibilities connected to the re-organization of our department, and I have to admit I have felt overwhelmed at times.  When I left for the year on December 21, I had over 800 emails in my inbox that I simply did not have time to get to.  And when I logged in today, I found that, even though my contacts are aware that the company is closed, they are still sending me email and expecting responses!  So I know that when I return I will have a full docket.  Sigh…it’s a burden being indispensable! Oh, and I almost forgot.  On January 2 I celebrated my tenth anniversary at my company, which is big for me, since it’s the longest I’ve ever stayed at any one job.

In the “bumps and bruises” department, for the first time since I have been married (2003), I spent so much time in various dentist’s chairs, I maxed out both dental insurance policies!  I lost a bridge that had been in my mouth since age 11, when one of the two anchor teeth turned out to be rotten, and I lost a molar for the same reason.  So in 2019, one of my first items of business will be to get an implant where the bridge was. Well, when you get to be age 69, stuff tends to start falling apart.  I come from a family with bad teeth, so it’s not unexpected.

In April, we did a whirlwind Hillsdale College National Leadership Seminar in Colorado Springs, where we met up with our Ricochet friends and attended some very interesting lectures.

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In May, another of our Ricochet friends happened to be in Seattle for a conference, so we went downtown and had a nice dinner.  In June, yet another of our Ricochet friends came to town, and a bunch of us did some sightseeing, and a tour of the Boeing factory, and had another nice dinner, a bit closer to home.

On a sadder note, also in May, my brother-in-law succumbed to liver disease, and my sister was left a widow.  We are closer now that we were before, and I have come to understand better, how much she has always done for our family.  I surely appreciate her more.

Throughout the year, Hubby and I took our normal amount of day trips, to the Diablo Lake Overlook in the North Cascades, and to LaConner in Skagit County.  In July/August, we went on the Hillsdale College Cruise to Hawaii and back, and my readers will have enjoyed my essays on the subject.  Well, it’s December, so here’s a little reminder.

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At the end of August, Hubby had a total knee replacement operation, and he was out of work for the entire month of September.  I got a lot of exercise, going up and down the stairs bringing him stuff in our bedroom.  He has bounced back, and recovered nicely, and has resumed playing easy squash at his athletic club.

In November, we went to Victoria, BC for an accordion function with Hubby’s band, and had a nice time reacquainting ourselves with the town.  So here we are now, in the last week of the year 2018, and all in all it’s been pretty good.  We are both healthy, safe, and gainfully employed.  2019 will be a bit unsettled, as my company was sold in the fall, and the sale will close in the third quarter.  We have no idea what our fate will be, but we expect some big changes, and some job cuts.  Normally, the company who bought my company, has a reputation for “slash-and-burn” tactics when it buys another company, but this time may be different as we are about equal in size.  Who knows, I may be required to retire next year, even though I sure don’t want to.

Just two days ago, I again got in my car, and drove to Seattle to participate in the University Unitarian Church full-length Messiah Sing/Play-along.  My stand partner was there again, and we had a great time playing the awe-inspiring music of Handel, and listening to the big choir sing the inspiring words, all taken from the Bible.  It just makes my heart sing, and brings a smile every time.

One thing I do know is that this blog will continue in the New Year.  I heartily wish all my followers and readers a Happy New Year, and very best wishes for a healthy, prosperous 2019.

 

I found my retirement “calling” on the Hillsdale cruise to Hawaii

I found my retirement “calling” on the Hillsdale cruise to Hawaii

I am 69 years old and still working full-time as a buyer for an aerospace company. Aside from vowing never to draw Social Security or be subject to Medicare (as a reason for keeping working), I couldn’t think of what I would do with myself if I retired. I play violin, but there’s not much opportunity to play chamber music in my town. I wouldn’t want to just sit around and read all day, which is my favorite pastime when not working.

Funny, but my retirement calling was staring me in the face, and I wasn’t seeing it. My husband and I are big supporters of Hillsdale, and we are members of the President’s Club of donors. It’s also convenient that his employer matches both our contributions and my employer matches mine (so my contribution is tripled). While sitting in one of the excellent lectures on the cruise, it hit me. If and when I retire, I intend to become a Hillsdale Associate, someone who recruits students and donors for the college and generally talks up the place. After reading Dr. Paul Rahe’s post on the Main Feed over at Ricochet.com, perhaps I’d enlist a letter-writing campaign to the Wall Street Journal to get them to add Hillsdale to their yearly college rankings.

In my everyday life now, I always talk up Hillsdale. My work coat closet has a Hillsdale flag on it for all to see. On the cruise, we provided Hillsdale literature to our cabin attendant! I can’t think of a better way to spend my retirement years than promoting Hillsdale College.

Vacation Travelogue-Hillsdale Cruise to Hawaii-Days Two and Three

Vacation Travelogue-Hillsdale Cruise to Hawaii-Days Two and Three

Sea days were lecture days on the Hillsdale Cruise, and the first two helped get us into the standard daily routine of morning lectures, lunch, afternoon lecture, and free time.  Monday the 16th of July introduced us to the lecture hall, known aboard ship as the Galaxy Lounge.  Here we all are that first morning of lectures.

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The first talk of the morning was by Victor Davis Hanson, Distinguished Fellow, Hillsdale College (and distinguished classical historian).  His subject was “The Current State of the US Military”, and as usual he held us all spellbound.  Today’s military has been subjected to differing rules, regulations, and budgets depending upon who is president, and the discussion was spirited.

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Next, we were treated to a talk by the President of Hillsdale College, Dr. Larry Arnn.  Everyone on the cruise was very familiar with Dr. Arnn, and we enjoyed his speech.  Dr. Arnn has always been one of my role models as a Good Person.

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His was the last lecture of the day, so after listening to Dr. Arnn, we adjourned for lunch, and a free afternoon exploring the many wonders of the Crystal Symphony.  Not far from the Galaxy Lounge is the ship’s Casino.  On sea days, you could hear the merry jingling of machines and the hum of conversation from the casino whenever you passed near.

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Sometimes we would have lunch in the Silk Restaurant, an Asian-flavored venue.  I loved the decor there, including a wall of art most unusual, and pretty furniture.  They also had some vertical gardens that lent a natural touch to the space.

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Living Wall

After lunch, it was time for a tour around the Promenade Deck.  At the bow of this ship is a “fitness garden” of outdoor equipment for people to take a turn on as they stroll the deck, as well as lifeboats and other safety paraphernalia.  The sea and sky were beautiful this day, too.

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Tuesday’s morning lectures were by George Neumayr, Contributing Editor of the American Spectator, and Nick Lloyd, Professor of Military History at King’s College, London.

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This is Mr. Neumayr.  We met him at dinner on Sunday and we enjoyed his talk.

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Mr. Lloyd gave three lectures on his specialty, World War I, which were very informative.

Tuesday’s afternoon lecturer was Roger Kimball, Editor and Publisher of The New Criterion.  His new book is very colorfully-titled, and available for purchase later, signed by the author.  Many of the tour’s lecturers had books for us to buy, which we did!

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Tuesday afternoon I did my tour around the Promenade Deck and took pictures, as usual.  It looked like the weather was going to get stormier, so I took every opportunity to get outside.  My readers will know that I have a fascination for the water and the sky from the ship, and I took many photos of the ever-changing sea.

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This is the end of Day 3, Sunset on Tuesday.

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Extra! Extra! Read all about it! (Dem) Pollster Pat Caddell Agrees with Rush Limbaugh!!

I am currently on a cruise ship, the Crystal Symphony, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, heading east toward Mexico, in the company of a large contingent of Hillsdale College supporters and employees.  On our sea days, we have been presented with a group of the best speakers known to conservatives.  Self-identified Democrat Pat Caddell has treated us to some inside secrets of the polling universe, and we have been often startled by how conservative he actually sounds. In fact, I have been pleasantly surprised at how many times he has seemed to agree with my Hero, Rush Limbaugh, about events taking place in the US recently.

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Nearly the first idea he expressed, that “the sovereignty of the US has been hijacked by the Political Class against the American People”.  Funny, but Rush has been saying this for years.  Mr. Caddell cited results showing that 70% of Americans have expressed the opinion that the country is “in decline”, and that today’s children will not be as prosperous as their parents are.  He says that the political class has all the power, and uses it to make their own rules-there are essentially separate codes of conduct for the political class, and the rest of the people (to whom they are supposed to be answerable).

Here is Caddell’s Law:  The Wisdom of the American People in the aggregate cannot be denied.  Pat notes that the elites are allied with the mainstream Press in telling the People what they should think.  Again, another place where he agrees with Rush Limbaugh, who has been discussing this for nearly as long as he has been in the public eye.  And he agrees with Rush that today’s Democrats and bureaucrats are attempting to nullify the results of the 2016 presidential election that brought Donald Trump to power.  He even used the same word to describe what is taking place!  Both men, one a staunch conservative, the other a Democrat, have described the same actions of those who believe that Trump’s election was illegitimate, and that he is mentally unstable and unfit for the high office to which he was elected.

In Caddell’s talk on the polling business today, he started by describing how the media’s polls are biased, and ignore responses that are counter to their anti-Trump narrative (thus presenting false results).  Bingo!  Another area of agreement with Rush! He pointed out the colleges, like Marist and Quinnipiac, that have started their own polling operations, and how their student poll-takers are subtly influencing the answers they receive from those they poll.  Remember now that most colleges in the US today are strongholds of progressivism, safe-spaces, snowflakes, and Trump-hatred.  And he also noted how often media and college polls over-sample Democrats. Bingo again!  Rush has been mentioning this for a long time, that this artificially lowers the ratings of Republicans, and understates the actual popular support for President Trump.

Caddell also notes how the media do minute-by-minute polls when the Republicans are doing poorly or in the midst of a (often media-fueled) scandal; but they go silent when the Conservative party is doing well.  Bingo!  Rush has mentioned often how the press kept the heat on President George W. Bush, and misrepresented the economy as doing worse than it actually was.  Our speaker went over the whole Benghazi scandals, and how the media and the Obama Administration perpetuated lie after lie after lie to deflect attention away from Hillary Clinton’s culpability for the deaths of four of our American diplomats.  Bingo!!  More agreement with Rush!

Mr. Caddell says that the media are telling us which “truth” we may know, and they suppress the Truth.  He thinks, and our audience agrees, that the press are making themselves the enemy of the American public.  He emphasized how the advent of 24-hour TV news coverage has expanded the power of the media, and enabled them to literally destroy a law-abiding American’s life and career.  Remember Joe the Plumber, whose life was turned upside-down when he was seen as not supporting the previous president?  He notes that in the 20th Century, the press deferred to presidents, and did not ask tough questions.  Now, they try to destroy the duly-elected president!

Rush has often discussed how the Press does not report what happened, but what they Want to happen, and Pat Caddell is in agreement with that.  Mr. Caddell also discussed how in times past White House correspondents for major media organizations were experienced veterans of years in the news business, while today’s “reporters” are raw college recruits, with little knowledge of the way the White House should be covered.  They mainly report on events that coincide with their preferred narrative, and ignore things that don’t. Bingo!  Another agreement with Rush.

Mr. Caddell also discussed how today’s news-readers sound exactly alike when reporting a particular news story, to the extent of even using all the same words and phrases.  Triple Bingo!  Rush Limbaugh has had his experienced production team producing montages of all the news readers expounding on the same subject, and you can plainly hear how everyone sounds exactly alike!  In fact, those montages are the best part of Rush’s demonstration of how today’s media operate.

So, Mr. Pat Caddell, when are you going to finally admit the obvious?  Isn’t it time for you to leave the “dark side”, and come out and admit that you are not really a Democrat, but a Republican?  If you do that, and join us, you will discover that we conservatives are real people, who work for a living and appreciate all work and workers.  We conservatives do NOT attempt to destroy the lives and livelihoods of those with whom we disagree, we reason with them and try to help them see the light.  We clean up after ourselves, and don’t leave the mountains of garbage behind at political rallies like the “progressives” do. And we welcome new people-the best conservatives are reformed “liberals”.  You have already seen, over the past week on the sea and in Hawaii, how friendly we are.  Join us!

 

Photo Challenge: Liquid

I practically live surrounded by water.  Last week I shared a picture of the lake just south of my house.  Puget Sound is just a few miles to the west, and Lake Washington is to the East and South.  Back in 2016, we went on a cruise to Alaska, and I posted numerous photos of the various waters we traversed.  My favorite part of a cruise has always been relaxing on my verandah, just watching and listening to the water go by.  There is no better form of relaxation.  And this summer, we will be going on a two-week cruise, round trip to Hawaii from San Francisco.  I promise to to a big post when we get back.

But I always keep coming back to this particular photo that I took on the Crystal Serenity in 2016.  This is the water in one of the two swimming pools on board.  It just says “relaxing” to me.

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The water resembles liquid silk.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/liquid/

 

Sunset…An End, and a Beginning

The evening of the first day of our cruise to Alaska aboard the Crystal Serenity was beautiful, and clear.  The ship left Vancouver BC just as the sun was setting.  We stood at the rail of the Promenade Deck and watched for long minutes, as the sun set over the channel.  We knew when we awoke the next morning, we’d be close to the waters off Alaska.  End of the day, beginning of an adventure.

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https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/rise-set/

Weekly Photo Challenge…Solitude

The ultimate solitude for me would be sitting here:

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The private veranda off our cruise-ship stateroom.  With a good book.  Listening to this:

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I find the sight and sound of the ship cutting through the water incredibly relaxing.  This is, in my opinion, the best part of a cruise.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/solitude/