July 2020

Wednesday 1: I donated blood last night, but instead of the usual 1 unit of whole blood, I went for the “Power Red”, which is 2 units of red cells. I recall using a similar separation device back in Canberra to donate plasma. 

While working today, doing lots of heavy lifting, I found myself several times running short of breath.

Thursday 2: Today it was the same, so I sent a message to my doctor. He clarified that yes, it would feel a bit like exercising on Mount Everest, because what I had donated were the cells that carry oxygen. I figure I’ll stick to the usual 1 unit of whole blood in future. I also did some calculations, and came to the conclusion that I have been donating blood for a about 45 years now! Fortunately, I have decided to take some well earned paid time off, covering the whole weekend plus my usual Monday off, before the company closes at the end of this month, and there is no guarantee that my remaining PTO will be paid out when they do.

Meanwhile, Buddy spotted the squirrel again.

And we’re back to shitty traffic again. This is on the approach to downtown Seattle.

Friday 3: I had reason to look back on the website for the Honiara Project, way back in 2004, and came across the panorama pictures that I had taken from the ridge where the American War Memorial is. It looks even better now that I have the technology to stitch them together. Click on it for the full size.

Saturday 4: Yep, can’t have Fourth of July without fireworks. Yes, it’s noisy.

Just as well I’m off work for now, as my oxygen delivery deficiency is still having its affect. Lift something and I’m short of breath. Stand up too fast and my head is spinning. At least both only last a short time. Definitely won’t make a donation like that again!

Sunday 5: Julie came across this on Facebook. It was too good not to repeat it. The Fremont Troll is a major tourist attraction in Seattle.

Tuesday 7: Julie and I went to the well to top up on fresh water. The site is backs onto the Natural Area surrounding Swamp Creek, which of course is overrun by blackberry bushes. However, I did notice the perfectly natural interaction between the bush and the bee.

Wednesday 8: I was at the end of a session of Door Dashing and found myself in Lowell, which overlooks the Snohomish River. Oops, there’s a train going past.

Ah, that’s better.

And then realised that I had not yet taken any pictures of the new car, which we bought after the Dodge developed an issue with the transmission that was going to cost $6,000 to fix.

It’s a 2017 Toyota Corolla, 50th Anniversary edition, with more bells and whistles than I can count, including a cruise control that monitors the distance to the vehicle ahead and adjusts automatically. Funny, I am now seeing a whole lot of vehicles in a similar colour, which BTW is Dark Cherry.

Thursday 9: We have started to look at the possibility that we may have to move from our “yes, I can smell the mould” apartment. We can’t smell it, but others can. So, we’re going to have to get the desk out of the spare room. OK, let’s put it up on OfferUp. Sure, here’s what it looks like. Oops.

Ah, I can use this one, from when we moved in. That’s better!

Meanwhile, Julie has started working as a clerk for the Census. During this week, she worked 13:30 to 21:00, next week, it’s 06:00 to 13:30 for some days. Oh yeah, going to fun digging her out of bed at 04:00! She said I may need to become “very strict” on her bed time. And then I need to somehow work my start and finish times around hers if possible, so that I can be her transport. At least the office is just down near Everett Mall, so it’s not far.

Saturday 11: Yep, there’s one in the same colour, in the parking area at work. OK, very close at least.

Sunday 12: We were pulling out some old albums from the large cabinet in the living room. Guess who just had to get in there and claim it.

Monday 13: We were awake at 04:00, to give us time to get organised without having to be pushed for time. With Monday being my one day off in the week, I wandered around in a daze for most of the day!

Tuesday 14: We were again awake at 04:00, but this time at least, I had a purpose. Dropped Julie at work at 06:00 and went straight to work myself, where I attacked my day in stages.

  • Go inside and check out how much stuff I need to load.
  • Start staging it in the building next door.
  • At about 07:00, check in with Dispatch and get my van key.
  • Put the van in the building next door and get it loaded.
  • Once it’s all loaded, at about 07:30 or so, go back to Dispatch, pick up the tray of van bags and get out to the parking lot to hand out the bags.
  • At about 08:30, hand the tray to the last driver out, to give to Dispatch, and go hit the road.
  • And I have a head start on the day!

Julie finished first, so as we had previously arranged, she made her way to the nearest restaurant, which just happens to be an Applebees, and waited. Good plan!

Wednesday 15: On the way home today, I revisited the lookout overlooking Puget Sound, and captured the Whidbey Island ferries crossing over.

Wednesday 15: I also took another panorama picture. You can click on it for the highly detailed version, where the ferries have moved on.

Thursday 16: At one of the stations in South Seattle today, I was asked if I could transport this thing to a nearby station.

Yeah, I’ve heard about this one already and know that I’m likely to get stuck with it at the other end. He lifts the yellow thing onto the base with great difficulty (it’s heavy) and takes a picture, saying that he will send it to his boss. Politely explains that it’s heavy and it’s more than one person can lift, and that there is just one of me. Makes sure he takes everything else, to keep them happy, and leaves!

Saturday 18: After a VERY full day today (I logged nearly 11 hours for what should be about 6 hours), my right knee is REALLY swollen. This is my view, looking downwards.

Friday 24: Our squirrel has a name: Sam. It works equally well regardless of gender. Today we both shared a “moment” with Sam and Buddy.

Tuesday 28: This was a sequence of: “Hmm, bit of a traffic jam there, glad I’m going the other way”, followed by “Ouch!”, followed by “Wow!”, followed by “How?”.

Wednesday 29: A while ago, I saw a reference in the AAA magazine to the “Hat and Boots” monument in Georgetown. Apparently, it is an iconic monument that defines the character of the suburb, and it’s in a playground which is on a street that I use all the time. So today, I took a few minutes out of my day, parked the van and went in search of a picture.