Nothing is ever easy for me.
Well, that’s not completely true . . . but I think you know what I mean. Ever have something that should be as easy as closing a door turn into a huge operation? I just got off the phone with a nice young man somewhere well outside of the U.S. just because I wanted to learn Spanish.
I got RosettaStone for Christmas. In case you been trapped inside a time capsule since the Harding Administration I should explain that RosettaStone (The brand name is one word with a capitalized S. I am not happy about the ugly red spellcheck lines on my screen, but that is the product’s name) is a language teaching software package. You can find them about anywhere, but I have seen them in airports. I find that interesting. I mean, you’re all ready for your trip to the Philippines; you have your passport, your traveler’s checks, camera, film but WAIT, I forgot I don’t know the language! I AM SAVED . . . I can get RosettaStone for Tagalog in the airport and be conversational before I hit Manila. It must be me.
Anyway, in this century loading a program onto a laptop should be a snap, right? Right? Well, not so fast. I followed the instructions exactly. Yes, I followed the instructions. Just stop it. Really. Careful following of the instructions yielded an ugly, scary FAILURE sign. That failure sign lead to me calling technical support and talking to a very patient, very intelligent young man who was kind to me regardless of my computer illiteracy. He was also impossible to understand. Not his fault, but I couldn’t understand a word. His combination of language difficulties and 25 years around jet engines on my part made it tough for us to communicate. So there I was trying to get mysoftware that would teach me another language to work using instructions from somebody I couldn’t understand. It’s little ironies like this that add that tang to life.
Long story short, the young man was very professional and polite and took control of my computer to fix the issue. I managed to spend the last of the morning conjugating verbs and rolling my r’s.
That is part of my plan this summer. I have two goals: Learn Spanish and write more. I have always wanted to be conversational in another language. I have picked up a little through my travels in the military. I can get glared at in about 6 languages, but I am not conversational in any . . . I mean other than English.
I am looking forward to being able to write more. School is to blame. This semester was a root canal with a hangover on your way to IRS audit. Nothing was easy. I am not suggesting that a degree should be easy, I’m just saying that an entire semester shouldn’t be a foot cramp at 2 am.
At any rate, I will be writing more now that the semester is over. It will be me and the boys this summer. We have big plans. Lots of fun. Our first project was to plant their “farm”. They seasonally beg for a garden, but that never seems to happen. We really don’t have room for a garden. We have two acres of land, but the majority is wooded hillsides that don’t lend themselves to yards. A garden will take up a large part of the remaining flat area around our house. The solution is to plant our garden in large pots. We have eggplant, broccoli, tomatoes, cauliflower, squash and onions potted up.
The day we planted our crops it was in the low 70s and gorgeous. That night the temperature dropped to the high 30s because we live in Alaska. For us crop rotation means moving the crops inside at night then around the house as the sun moves. Oh well, the boys like their farm.
Our summer will include youth sports. Both boys will be playing soccer and football. Yes, football in summer. The youth season starts the first week in July, again, because we live in Alaska. It starts that early because by the middle of October, typically, Queen Elsa is standing on my front deck singing “Let it go . . .” and bragging about how the cold doesn’t bother her anyway. This will be Eli’s first year of organized sports. He is only four, but they have teams for his age so we signed him up. I’m not sure how it will work out. He is in that delicate age where he wants to wear his mom’s shoes and his brother’s football helmet. It’s that age where he is more capable of throwing a fit than a spiral. We’ll see.
We love to get outdoors during the summer. We didn’t camp much last summer because of my ankle surgeries. We’ll try to make up for it this summer. We didn’t want to leave the state this summer, but we have to travel later this month. My oldest son Parker is getting married. I typed that last line then looked at it for a long time. He is getting married. More on that later. Right now, let’s just say that it seems like last week that he was playing with Power Rangers and Pop Tarts were his favorite food. OK, he still does that, but it doesn’t seem possible that he could be getting married.
Well, Charlie is home from school and I have to start working on our camper. It’s also time to rotate the crops. Thanks for reading and we will be in touch again soon on This Side of the Diaper.