Yesterday, I got sent to the COVID drive through. It was actually no big deal. Although I was unable to spit (I have dry mouth from all the Blood Pressure medicine I take), they stuck those big q-tips up my nose which was, despite rumors to the contrary notwithstanding, mostly made me want to sneeze. Today they called to tell me the test was negative. Which I figured it would be — except for about one hour yesterday evening when I was convinced i was going to die. Lucky me, I pulled through. Phew.

Today we concluded I have a really bad toothache and probably a sinus infection. Being as all this is getting done via zoom, it’s more conjecture than diagnosis, though I did physically see the dentist. The problem is the fever. Every day, it pops up around four in the afternoon. I take some Excedrin and it first knocks me out, then I wake up and don’t feel like my head is going to explode. It feels like a sinus infection. It hurts in all the right places and with the pain in my jaw to add to it, I feel like I’ve gone 10 rounds with Mohammed Ali and I did not win the belt.  The worrying part is why I have a fever. Oral infections have a nasty way of invading other parts of your body, especially your heart and frankly, my heart has had more than enough issues.

Meanwhile, today is our 30th anniversary (and they said it wouldn’t last … Hah!) and not only to I feel crappy, but even if I felt better, there’s nowhere to go and nothing to do — and no money to do it with which is just the icing on this decade’s cake. Garry made me a sweet little video about our marriage where he claimed to be to blame for absolutely everything that has gone wrong — and I know for 100% sure he doesn’t mean a word of it. But it’s sweet of him to take one day out of the year and make a 30-year apology for being such a stubborn SOB.

Owen is picking up Italian sub sandwiches and we picked up (among other things) a cheesecake, which is the only cake we like. I wanted the one with the strawberries on top, but is was three dollars more which was a lot of money for some strawberries. Besides, the boys like it plain anyway.

This is not the first unhealthy anniversary I’ve had. My second one was spent in the hospital having my spine repaired. I’ve also spent three birthdays in hospital. But one year, I got Gibbs on my birthday and that made up for a lot.

So it goes. The weather went from unbearably sultry hot, to chilly. Suddenly, we are dressed in sweatpants and sweatshirts and I’m deep in socks. it did this weather flip in less than four hours in a single evening. It still hasn’t rained, so despite the cold snap, we have no bright foliage. The dark green of summer is just fading out Hunks of green leaves are falling from trees. If we don’t get rain — serious rain — soon, many trees won’t survive the winter. Ellen said for the first time ever, in their woods trees just snapped in half. Other times, the ground had been soaked and they couldn’t hold their ground. This time, the wind came up and they broke in half. Not a good sign. Lucky we haven’t had any fires. New England is very treed — more than 70% trees — and a bad fire could wipe us all out.

I’m going t go find my warmer sweat pants. I consider it a badge of honor to not turn the heat on until the end of October, but this may turn out to be a cold one.

I’m taking the next few days off to try and let my fever break, my headache go away, and that pain in my jaw fade to a less jarring feeling of having recently been punched, I’m having trouble focusing. All this Tylenol and aspirin and the gunk I have to spread on the dry socket of my tooth aren’t making me feel at my best.

Meanwhile, just a note that I am not going to continue paying WordPress for the privilege of “doing my writing their way” whether I like it or not. I don’t know if I’m going to change platforms or finally, after 8 years, let it go. It has been a great eight years and I’ve enjoyed the writing, photography, and most of all your friendships very much. I am paid up through early February of 2021, but after that? I will be happy to send my email address to anyone who wants it so we can actually keep in touch, but I’m not enjoying blogging WordPress anymore.

For those of you who are content with the status quo, I’m content with your contentment. It does not work for me. I have noticed, that most of you who are comfortable with it don’t write the kind of complicated text amd graphics I use. If I were using predominantly text, it wouldn’t be a problem for me either — unless I was trying to do it all on a cell phone. I am in admiration of those who can write on such a tiny surface!

I do not know what piece of the market WordPress is aiming to get, but I don’t think they are going to get the young enthusiasts when they make the kind of writing young enthusiasts enjoy so hard to manage. Anyway, I have five months to make a decision, so I won’t be just vanishing. One way or the other, we’ll be in touch.

Author: Marilyn Armstrong

Opinionated writer with hopes for a better future for all plus a big helping of cynicism.


  1. Happy Anniversary. I like the cheesecake plain too, but I would accept strawberries.
    I actually saw my doctor Monday. I had the COVID test and it was negative also. I felt bad at the time, but no fever.
    My general feeling is that I would like to continue on with the blog, whether here or elsewhere. When I retire (end of next year the latest) I would have more time to devote. We are hoping to help pull the airline through, but the longer the restrictions are in place, the tougher it will be. If the airline goes under, I will just retire at that point.


    1. I’m trying to figure out Medium. I’m still puzzled about what exactly the accept or don’t accept. I’d like to continue too, but I know we can’t do it here and we have to find something everyone feels comfortable with. And money counts because we are SO broke.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Happy 30th! I’m sorry you’re feeling yucky. The infections are never good. I hope the next 5 months equate to continued awesome posts and pics for all of us-and your goals are met most importantly. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, dear, feel better! Have you tried a neti pot for the sinuses? Worked wonders for me.
    As for WP, we will miss you, but I definitely understand. You might want to write for Medium. Easier to maneuver, free and they pay you. You have wonderful stories to share!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m beginning to feel better. The infection in my mouth is finally healing. And I think the doxycycline is helping the sinus thing. So maybe by next week i’ll feel human again. But I’m not going to start pushing as hard to blog as I was. I’m very unhappy with WordPress and if this is my only choice, I’d rather quit than continue.


      1. Look into Medium! We need your voice of reason out there. I’m more than unhappy with WP, too. Constant glitches, constant lost content.
        Feel better! Sending you healing vibes in this dry but beautiful fall.


  4. Hope you feel better soon. Happy anniversary to you both.
    I think I may be joining you (and god knows how many others) in the WP exodus. And sadly, I doubt they will care in the slightest.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No, they won’t care. They have made that very clear. I just wish I could find a platform that words for everyone and where we could regroup. Right now, I’m having trouble even thinking. I’ve been feeling so poorly, it’s hard to think.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. First, happy anniversary. Second, I hope your tooth and you feel better soon. And third, I feel your pain about WordPress and, like you, I’m considering finding another hosting site or just quitting. We shall see.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve taken a good look at Wix, but the price is a bit off-putting. Medium has an awful lot of rules for me and really, I’m tired. Eight years of WP and a lot of the joy has left and I’m not sure I can recover it. I can try.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I for one would be terribly sad and disappointed, but of course I’d have to accept your decision which in itself is very understandable.
    But for now, do get better, get rid of that horrible ‘head-and-all-ache’, enjoy the birds and the company of Garry and Gibbs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We have the healthiest birds in the valley. I put out water and food and unlike most of the birds, they aren’t dying of starvation or lack of water. But it’s bad. Very dry and the trees are half dead from lack of water.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I am sorry to know you are ill, Marilyn, and even sorrier that you can’t get the block editor to work for you. You certainly do have a lot more pictures and characters in your posts than I do. Get better quickly, everything in life is rosier when you are healthy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have a fairly complex way of writing. Which is reasonable since I’ve been a pro at this my whole life. I’ve got a style and I’m not going to change it because WP feels I should do what they want rather than what I want. This wasn’t supposed to be an unpaid job. It was supposed to be fun — and it isn’t fun anymore. Hell, even the places I worked professionally never interfered with my writing style as long as the results were what they wanted. These people have a lot of damned nerve.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. This is the worst infection I’ve ever had, but it is finally beginning to clear up. And then there’s trying to figure out what to do about WP. I know other people who left and went elsewhere, but no one followed them. They had to start over again and I am not sure I have the passion to start over.


      1. I took the blame for the bad stuff SERIOUSLY because usually I haven’t been there to support you or handle myself. I’m really TRYING this time but the dental stuff is maddening for me as it is PAINFUL for you.


  8. Good gracious! I hope they fix your tooth (which might have engendered an infection that is responsible for the fever) and that your ‘sinus’ infection is cured. I’m really saddened to read that you’ve had enough of WP and their ridiculous ‘rules’, because I shall miss deeply the photos. The writing is fabulous obviously, but the photos always brightened my day. I also shall enjoy this next five months. Take care Marilyn and keep us informed, because we’re watching (and listening)..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I must say, Garry’s being really NICE to me. I must look really miserable. Yesterday the dentist tried to assure Garry I didn’t even have an abcess. If I didn’t have an abscess, why did he pull the tooth? He needs to retire. Grow flowers or kittens. Really nice guy, but I feel mutilated. Garry’s nose for BS kicked in.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. ALL the blogging sites have free versions, but if you want the ads to go away — and you want your own standard email address, that’s extra. What’s nice about WIX is you can get the pieces you want without the pieces you don’t need. It’s like a diner menu. It takes a bit of asking questions to get the answers, though. If you get the Google package, you don’t need at least some of the WIX package, for example.

      In eight years of blogging — and using a LOT of pictures, I only NOW have just gone over three MB “top”. I could have done all this without the extra space. I wanted the lack of ads and the customizaton and my own address — but They took the customizaton away a couple of years ago leaving me with almost nothing for which i’d paid except the absence of adverts. I didn’t even object (I gave up) until this latest round of editorial issues. It’s an AWFUL mess and the calendar is hard to use. They’ve hidden basic functions under other basic functions without even headers to clarify which page does what. It’s ugly software. It isn’t cool or modern. Just BADLY designed. I’m not sure they know the difference.

      Liked by 2 people

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