FOWC with Fandango: Duplicate

I always warn people: those pod people are coming for you. Even, apparently, in Switzerland!

Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss

The Finished Garden

“Looks like the new neighbours are moving in.”

My other half was inquisitive, so he was positioned at the window with the binoculars.

“Give me the binoculars, I want to see what they have. They look a bit strange, like something from that E.T. film, sort of stick people. One is the chief I think, he is giving the instructions. There is some sort of thing hovering in the air. No, wait a minute. That must be the furniture van. Now and again an armchair falls into the window of the empty apartment. Funny it looks exactly like our De Sede armchair, you know the exclusive leather chairs we have.”

“Are you sure? And look our dining room table, genuine teak, has appeared. But wait that painting, looks genuine. It is our Picasso.”

“Looks more genuine that ours. Do you think Mafia?”

“No, they seem to be harmless and Mafia…

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Smorgasbord Posts from the Archives – #Potluck -Hugging the Dogs: Sharing My World 2015- Week 2 by Marilyn Armstrong

My, how time does pass!! Dogs that have gone, back when I though I might someday ride a horse again! Thank you, Sally, for your kindness and patience.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

This is the final post from the archives of the eclectic blog of writer Marilyn Armstrongand I have selected this one from a series of posts in 2015 – Sharing my World.. being that I am a dog person (until I am adopted by cats from time to time) and I enjoy ice cream… and writing..I thought this was a great way to find out a little more about Marilyn.

Hugging the Dogs: Sharing My World 2015- Week 2 by Marilyn Armstrong

BishopAre you a hugger or a non-hugger?

I came late to hugging. My family is not touchy-feely. They aren’t unfriendly, just more verbal than physical.

I hug, but only people to whom I feel especially close. And with whom I am very comfortable. Come to think of it, that category doesn’t include many people. But it does include the people who are the most important to…

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Climate Change Is Here… And It’s Coming Soon To A Town Near You!

It’s not just in your backyard. It’s the planet and it’s OUR planet. How long do we wait? When is it too late?

Lovewillbringustogether's Weblog

A graph in my local weekend paper has made it very clear that the climate in my part of this planet has changed significantly, and not for the better. This has so far had considerable effect on our economy, employment and people’s lifestyles. It’s effects are long lasting and the trend is clear. There is nothing to indicate that it is going to get any better any time soon, and in fact there is a huge mass of evidence to suggest it will get worse for some time yet.

Here’s the graph, issued by that Den of Deceit, the Western Australian Water Corporation.


The graph shows the dramatic decline in the annual amount of rainwater flowing into our water catchment areas that feed our dams which used to be our main water supply to a city of almost 2 million people.

Reliable records were kept from 1911 (Perth was founded…

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We’ve lived in this house for just under 20 years.

When we moved in, we put up all new vinyl siding, tore off the old roof and put up a new one. We installed fencing around the property. We got rid of the beaten up sliding doors that went from the dining room to deck with French doors, replaced the front door (the first time). In total, it was about $30,000 worth of work. Then there were appliances like washer, drying, refrigerator, stove. And of course, the water heater popped. Eight years later (that’s about the longest a water heater lasts), it popped again and we replaced it again. We had to replace the water heater again this year, too.

The newly refinished deck — which is also why there are no birds. It was time to take in the feeders until the fall. I miss my birds!

As for the water pump in the well (it’s almost 500 feet underground), the lightning loves it. It’s the combination of iron and water — a magnet for electric. We replaced the output for the septic system and all the pipes that ran to it because the people who had lived here rolled over them with a truck and crushed them.

French doors in the dining room
New front door!

We added a sump and a pump and French drains so the basement would stop flooding. We had to rebuild the well because it was old and it needed it. We replaced most of the pipes in the house and redid the electricity twice (two new circuit boards, if you please).

This year, we replaced the bathroom which urgently needed it and all the plumbing from the upper floor to the basement (time turns copper piping into rust). We replaced the front door (again) and added a chair lift.

As much of the room as I could fit into the picture!

The chimney still needs repointing and the west wall of the house has been beaten by storm-after-storm since the end of the winter. This summer has been both the wettest and hottest on record.

Remember climate changes? Guess what? It’s not “on the way.” It’s here.

Despite being just on the edge of out of money, we nonetheless managed to get through each thing that had to be done. We consolidated our biggest credit cards which had been used to pay for these fixes. I was counting on at least one year of breathing easier. I was pretty sure the chimney would survive until spring unless a tree falls on it … and THAT is one of the things insurance covers.

I did not count on having one wall of the house turn into mush and mold. It was the wind-driven rain, falling trees, and branches. The gutters are so bent from being whacked by falling branches they no longer do anything useful.

This year, we ran out of money. It took 20 years, but the house got older and we got older. And then there was getting rid of the invasion of the field mice and the ants. Living in the woods is a mixed bag.

What’s astonishing is how your home insurance never covers ANYTHING. Except when lightning hit the pole in front of the house (that was a really LOUD noise!) and knocked out two computers and a router. Insurance paid for that. Otherwise, they have collected some very big money from us for a long time and never paid anything to us.

I think they owe us because it isn’t wear-and-tear. It’s storm, wind, and crashing tree limbs. But, we don’t get to make that decision. It’s entirely up to them. When lightning hit the well, they said it wasn’t part of the house so we had to pay for it. How could it not be part of the house? But, that’s what they said. They agreed it was lightning, but not their problem. OUR problem. As usual.

Apparently, the only way your well is covered is if it happens to be inside your house and wells are NOT inside anyone’s house.

We are out of money. We had a nest egg. It got eaten. Houses always need work. No matter how much you do — and we’ve done more than I’ve bothered to list — there’s always more. The windows were good when we got here, but they are old now. We replaced the horrible old rugs with fake wood floors, but it wasn’t installed well and it needs to be redone using better materials and a much better installer.


Now, there are changes in the climate.  These will eventually affect everyone. Do you think insurance companies are going to cover climate change damage?

Would you like to put down a few bets on that one?

Insurance companies are not in business to cover you no matter what the advertisements say on television. They are in business to make money by NOT paying you while proving whatever happened, it’s your problem.

Basically, they cover three things: lightning that damages things IN your house (like having it burn down), falling trees, and fire. Everything else is “wear and tear.” With climate change beating up everyone’s house, there’s going to be a lot of damage — and it won’t be their job to fix it because they don’t fix. They collect.

House in summer

So maybe you understand when I say homelessness is not on my agenda, I’m too old and too sick. We are both too old and if we are unlucky enough to not get the Republicans out of office, it’s going to get worse. Remember:  Social Security and Medicare are insurance too — and if they decide to stop payments, we will all be in very deep shit.

Counting on Social Security and Medicare? Better check this out!

PLUGS, CABLES, AND WIRES – Marilyn Armstrong

FOWC with Fandango — Plug

Plugs and wires, wires and plugs. I remember when I was working at Intel and they were inventing wireless while telling us how we wouldn’t need those plugs and wires anymore.

They forgot about electricity.

We don’t need a wire to tell the printer to print (though the wired ones worked better), but everything that uses power has to be plugged in. If not the device, then its battery needs charging. One way or the other, power is the final part of the system.

There may be one fewer plug, but we are by no means wireless. Until we find a way of delivering electricity without a plug going into an outlet — which isn’t going to happen because the electric companies need to know how much to overcharge us — there will be wires, cables, plugs, and strips of outlets.

Many wires. Many cables. Many plugs. And never enough.

Do Trees Talk?

My mother always thought they talked. I guess she was right after all.


Tress talk via a network created by mycorrhizal fungi. These fungi also form massive branching networks of the fungal threads, called mycelium, that can extend thousands of acres, connecting entire forests.

Via – It’s Okay To Be Smart

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