SHARE YOUR WORLD – Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World

If you could choose any person from history to be your imaginary friend, who would it be and why?

Eleanor of Aquitaine. I know absolutely nothing about her personally, except she outlived almost everyone else in her time.

She got pissed at her husband, so she raised an army to dethrone him. AND she survived more than a decade imprisoned and came out ready to fight. Sounds like my kind of gal.

The 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s: Which decade do you love the most and why?

I loved the 60s. The music, the attitude, our enthusiasm for change. I liked US — the people. I even liked the movies. Not so much television, but I didn’t watch much TV. It was pre-cable and television was mostly rolling video and snow. With rabbit-ear antennas. Also, we were young and everything was fun.

The 70s were baby and child rearing years for me. Also, a lot of work. Full-time work, motherhood, and housework.

The 1980s were Israel and I sometimes wish I hadn’t left. Whatever is wrong with Israel, it might be worse here. Then, I should give that more thought. I’ve been gone a long time. I really have no idea what things are like there now. It might be a lot worse than I remember.

Working in California from Boston – Dawn of a new age in telecommuting

Let’s see. 1990. Back in the U.S., marrying Garry, Martha’s Vineyard. Lots of work. Lots and lots of work. Long hours of work and a lot of learning to do.

Definitely the 1960s. And Garry was there, too. In fact, all my current friends were around back in the 1960s and we were young.

When you die, what do you want to be remembered for?

Nobody is going to remember me. I doubt most of us will be remembered past our grandchildren and that is the way of normal human life. I’m not trying to create a monument of my life.

You know what makes you memorable? Being a really great leader, being a very bad leader. Being a mass murderer. Leading an army to disaster or triumph. The rest of us pretty much disappear and that’s okay.

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week? Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination. 

I barely remember the past couple of weeks. There has been SO much going on between Garry’s upcoming cochlear implant, getting hacked, rebuilding the computer, dealing with fraud investigations and forms … and other stuff. It’s just been really busy.

A lot of stuff got dealt with, though and I’m happy about that. Stuff got fixed which was broken. Some work got finished. I’m hoping that by the time Garry goes in for his surgery, most of the rest of our business will have been taken care of.

SHARING MY WORLD – Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World – June 4, 2018

A piece of clothing from your younger childhood you still remember?

I don’t actually remember anything from childhood. I didn’t have anything special in the way of clothing. It looks just like everyone else’s clothing. Shorts. Shirts. Sneakers.

1952 – Typical childhood clothing. Not memorable
1953 – More memorable clothing

My mother made most of my clothing, so it probably was nice, but it certainly didn’t form much in the way of memories. I remember clothing from when I was a young woman, though … well … at least a few things.

Regardless of your physical fitness, coördination or agility: If you could be an athlete what would do?   Remember this is SYW, dreaming is always allowed.

Trapeze artist. I want to be a flyer!

In a car would you rather drive or be a passenger?

A passenger, absolutely. I used to like driving alone. I never enjoyed having other people commenting on my driving.

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?

What happened last week? Was then when I got hacked? Or when we went to UMass Memorial? That’s when we got the new router, right?

Coming and going

I don’t remember anything. It has been wild and crazy and I don’t know what happened, except I must have come out of it okay, because … hey … here I am.

CEE’S SHARE YOUR WORLD – Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World

If you were to pack a basket for picnic lunch, what would be in your basket?

First of all, I’m not an enthusiastic outside eater, not matter how nice the weather is. At the beach, there is sand and everywhere else there are ants and flies. We used to cook on the back deck at the Vineyard. One day, a seagull swooped down and stole the steak directly from the grill. Hot coals and all. Now that is definitely chutzpah.

Photo: Garry Armstrong

Did I mention the wind? On a perfect day without a trace of wind, the moment you put down that paper table-cloth, there will be a wind and the rest of the meal will be trying to keep the paper plates, cloth, even your plastic forks and spoons in place.

Georges Seurat

I love old paintings of elegant picnics, but the picnics in my life have not been elegant. Mostly, they have involved swatting bugs, finding stones to put on everything to keep it on the table — if you have a table — and generally eating as fast as possible to get it over with. Maybe there were fewer insects in The Old Days? Or maybe … they just ate the bugs.

Please enjoy your picnic. Take pictures, too. I’ll love the photographs, I promise.

On a vacation what you would require in any place that you sleep?

Cleanliness. Working bathrooms. A non-sagging bed with a mattress that was replaced this decade.

And a convenient place to park so we don’t have to haul all our stuff up stairs and elevators while walking to a third story unit.

There are many motels that do not “get” the whole “handicapped” thing.

If you were to buy a new house/apartment what is the top three items on your wish list?

No stairs. A flat backyard. Easy to clean. Two garages — one for the car, the other for everything else. And lots of really BIG closets. Oh, did I mention an eat-in kitchen?

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?  

This was one hell of a week. I’m really glad that Garry will get his ear fixed and give him hearing for the first time in his life. I hated getting hacked and have spent the rest of the week replacing everything on my computer. So there was the good part — Garry will hear! And the not so good part — I have had to completely rebuild my computer.

Long term, Garry’s hearing is definitely the better part! By next week, I’ll have beaten back the last of the hacking, but once repaired, Garry will hear forever.

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Sharing My World: What A Week!

What household chore do you absolutely enjoy doing? (can be indoor or outdoor)

I don’t really enjoy household chores. I get a certain satisfaction from getting stuff done, but enjoying it? Not really. I’m just glad when it’s finished. Probably the best I can do with this is feeling pleased that something which needed doing got done. I won’t have to worry about it at least, not until the next time it needs doing.

Back when I had a spine that bent, I used to enjoy gardening, but these days, it’s more work and less fun. I still love the flowers, though. Even though it hurts.

Create a sentence with the words “neon green” and train.”

The neon green train roared across the Providence-Worcester bridge in Uxbridge.

Everyone stared, rubbed their eyes, then — being New Englanders — said “Well, that was different” and moved on. You can’t surprise people in this region. We’ve seen it all.

Other than your cell phone what can you always be found with?

A camera. Actually, you may not find the cell phone (though it’s usually somewhere in my purse, but not turned on), but there are cameras everywhere.

A bench full of cameras

If I’m in the house, computers too. I have too many cameras and I love them all. Each one is unique and special in its own way.

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week? 

Garry finally got to talk to the doctor who is going to do his cochlear implant and now things are moving forward. I think sometime before summer ends, the surgery. It’s kind of a miracle because it will be the first time in his life that Garry will be able to truly hear.

Then the long process of tuning up and learning the sounds and waiting for his brain to make it sound “normal.” Apparently, at some point for no known reason, your brain will turn the mechanical sounds you get from the implant and make them sound normal, like they used to sound when you could hear.

Why does it happen? No one knows, though many people have made good guesses. The brain is an amazing tool.


Share Your World – May 14, 2018

Time is really whizzing along these weeks. Whoosh and another week is gone. Slow down, please. I can’t keep up with everything.

Complete this sentence: This sandwich could really use some …


What is your least favorite candy?

I don’t like most hard candy. It sticks to my teeth.

What sign are you? Do you believe in astrology?

I’m a Pisces. Don’t judge.

Do I believe in astrology? Yes and no. I have learned much from astrology, but I do not believe it really offers us a “path” to life. All it does it suggest options, likelihood, possibilities.

Much will happen whether we choose it or not and the rest will probably happen too, but maybe we have some way to “push” the process one way or the other. Not change it, exactly … just move it to a different rail … with the ultimate destination always the same.

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?  

Garry was a very good speaker at Charlie Austin’s Memorial Service. I was proud of him. He is usually a very good extemporaneous speaking anyway, but he was very much on target this time.

It was a special time and he was a special speaker.


Share Your World – May 7, 2018

If you were given $22 million tax-free dollars (any currency), what is the first thing you would do? 

Same as last time. Pay off the house. Possibly knock it down and build one more suitable to our needs.

Home, now

Help out my friends and family who need it. Take a really lovely vacation for which someone other than me makes ALL the arrangements.

Hire a cook and people to clean the house. Get my hair cut by someone who won’t scalp me. Get more Bomba socks!

In what do you find the simplest of joys?

Pretty much all my joys are simple. I’m not sure what a complicated joy would be.

I’m just happy when all the bills are paid and nothing is broken or breaking down.

What would be your ideal birthday present, and why?

I want that vacation, but I want someone else to take care of it. ALL of it. Reservations. Tickets.

Literally everything from leaving home to returning. I don’t want to worry about money or travel connections or whether or not they will let me have a bottle of shampoo on my flight.

Spring dog with window
Spring window, with dog

Usually, when all is said and done, this means staying home.

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week? 

This was not a very smiley week. I was grateful to finally have normal weather and some sunshine.

A flower or two would have been grand, but the leaves are coming out, so if we aren’t bright with color, at least we are green. Each time I look out the window, I see the leaves have gotten bigger. Spring is happening in a huge hurry, trying I think to make up for all that lost time!

Happy birthday, Owen!


Share Your World – April 30, 2018

Do you use paper money? If so is your money organized sequentially according to denomination?

Basically, no. I never have any paper money. It’s common for me to not have a single piece of folding money in my wallet. Maybe a few odd coins, but that’s it.

Everything costs so much, there’s no point in trying to keep enough cash for daily use. You take out $20. Remember when $20 was a week of money for everything including coffee and lunch?

You go to the grocery. Buy a newspaper and a jug of lemonade and you’ve got $3 and some change left. The amount of money I’d have to carry around would be ridiculous.

Now … the real question … are your credit cards in order? The answer is that the things I need all the time – driver’s licence, bank card, Medicare, Blue Cross, Social Security, and all those cute little cards that have the serial number of my various spare parts … those are in one small section of my wallet. Everything else is wherever it landed.

You are comfortable doing nothing? For long stretches of time?

Does nothing include using the computer?

If yes, then absolutely. If not, absolutely not.

What is your greatest strength?

I can think problems through and usually figure a way out. Next, if I can’t find a way out, I am pretty good at shrugging and saying “Oh well, something will happen … ” and usually, it does.

Third? I know when to apologize. If I’m wrong, I say so quickly and emphatically. There is nothing to be gained by letting bad vibes accumulate.

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?  

I loved getting the roses pruned. One more nice day would have really helped, though. I thought we’d get at least two days. Now we are awaiting another nice one. The princes of meteorology make promises, but I’m beginning to not trust them.