Friday, July 14, 2017


As everyone (should) know(s), it is good to have good friends.

SWMBO received a package in the mail recently from our good friends Timmer and The Beaner to aid in her convalescence.

Inside was a live lucky bamboo plant.

But there was also something for me because I had missed her so much when she was having surgery and then healing in the rehabilitation hospital.

It was a (not live) panda!

I hadn't thought of a name until just now but with those dark eyes resembling a mask I think I'll call him "Bandit".

At any rate, my friends, thank you again.

Now let's get on to the Friday Funnies.

This week's theme is Signs of the Times.

And finally (or fahhhnnllyy . . .

Whew!  I don't know about you, Gentle Readers, but I'm just a wee bit more than worn out after all that hilarity.

So you can relax now and begin planning your exciting, fun-filled weekend.

Make it a good one.

And always remember to keep laughing!

Here, kitty-kitty . . .

Thursday, July 13, 2017


No extra charge for power lines.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

K-F International

Contrary to what some of you may believe, the K-F in the title of this post does not stand for Kentucky Fried.

So for those of you looking for a cuisine oriented blog post, you'll have to look elsewhere today.

No the K F in this post stands for Kaiser-Frazer, which was a U.S. automobile manufacturing company that produced cars in the 1940's and 50's.

They looked like this.

You can read the history of the company here.

A group of aficionados of the cars formed a group called the Kaiser Frazer Owners Club International in 1959.

And this week their 59th National Convention is being held in our area.

A number of cars from across the nation are on display for the convo.

Including the Darrin, which was a fiberglass sports car that beat the Chevrolet Corvette to market by one month.

Car lovers will have a great time in Central Arizona this week.

Sunday, July 9, 2017


Well it's not quite Monday here in Arizona but we're less than 3 hours away from it so . . .

Saturday, July 8, 2017


The monsoon has officially arrived in Arizona!

Oh, I know, it's not a real big thing for most of you to see rain falling from the sky.

But when you live in the land of scorched earth and "but it's a dry heat" and temperatures above 100 for days in a row . . . that first rain of the summer monsoon is a very big deal.

I can remember our first evening in Phoenix back in early July of 1972.

We were in a small convenience store when everyone ran outside to enjoy a monsoon rain shower.

We thought they were crazy until we heard that it had been over 100 days since the last rain.

Now, many years later, we're the ones who dance in the rain.  

(Figuratively speaking.)

And we can open the house and let the blessed cool breeze blow through.


Friday, July 7, 2017


So it's Friday, glorious Friday once again.

SWMBO has been up for awhile and now into the living room recliner, all by herself with only the walker to assist her.

She's walking much better today than yesterday.

Maybe home care is better for her than even a very good rehabilitation hospital.

Meanwhile I, the caretaker and step-and-fetch-it, am exhausted.

But that too shall pass and after all, it's time for some humor here.

BTW, a big thank you to the BRD, who's been such a peach throughout this ordeal.

And the folks at the rehab hospital, who were/are a true delight.

O.K. boys and girls and Gentle Readers, that's it for this week.

Now here is my prescription: be up for anything that comes along as you enjoy the weekend thoroughly and always remember to keep laughing.

Here, kitty-kitty . . .

Thursday, July 6, 2017


Just one day shy of three weeks since SWMBO fell on our rear patio and broke her femur, I am happy to report that today she came home.

As she reclined on her old familiar bed this afternoon I took her photograph to verify the event.

Well, as I have often said, she's a bit shy about having her picture taken, especially if she doesn't have her "face" (make-up) properly applied.

(I remember once reading a quote from television anchor lady Connie Chung that her husband, Maury Povich, was the only person who had ever seen her without her false eyelashes on.)

After a long wait and much paperwork she finally was released to the outer world this afternoon after a heartfelt goodbye from her case manager Doreen and one of her nurses Anita.

With the aid of a walker, a wheelchair, me and her eldest daughter, the BRD, she made it into our home and the loving greetings of her cats.

Speaking of the BRD she did a truly wonderful thing when she arrived at the hospital today.

She surprised a nurse with a "bouquet" for the staff, made up entirely of candy, and a lovely thank you card for treating SWMBO with such care.

She said flowers are nice but a sugar high is even better!

Thank you from all of us to the doctors, nurses, therapists, orderlies, cleaning staff, cooks and everyone at Mountain Valley Regional Rehabilitation Hospital in Prescott Valley, Arizona.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017


Judy's day didn't start off well.

Sometime in the darkness hours early Monday morning she woke to a pain at the rear of her right knee joint.

It grew progressively worse until she finally got some pain medication and some ice on it.

But then this morning the pain persisted from the back of the calf, up through the knee joint and into the back of the thigh.

When she tried her physical therapy this morning she was unable to take even one step and, in addition, she'd been given a muscle relaxant that had her groggy.

When I visited her the second time this morning she was back in bed, feeling depressed, and dozing off.

But I just spoke to her on the telephone and she said the head PT guy had worked on her leg for a good five minutes and given her a lot of advice about how to avoid the contractions, what to do when they start, when to ask for pain medication and how to loosen up the muscles.

And then she walked 32 STEPS!

She also learned this afternoon that she will have her staples removed from her surgery today.

So what started out as a rotten day has turned into a much better one.

And on the Goodwin Fire the latest I heard was that it is 91 percent contained and should be totally contained by tomorrow night at the latest.

So today is a Glorious Fourth of July!

Incidentally the traditional fireworks displays have been canceled in Prescott and Chino Valley but will go off as scheduled in Prescott Valley, where I live!

Saturday, July 1, 2017


Lyndon Baines Johnson was the 36th president of the United States of America.

His history, like that of most politicians, is replete with ups and downs, both in his electoral record and his appeal.

Some loved him.  Some hated him.

But he holds an honored place in our household, regardless of some of the things he did that we didn't like.

In 1965, he signed a bill creating Medicare.

Former President Harry S Truman and his wife, Bess, were the first recipients of the program.

At a time when a Republican Washington is trying as hard as they can to ruin healthcare in this country, we (Judy and I) are benefiting from the wealth of Medicare.

Since Judy took a fall on June 16th she has been in a hospital, had surgery for a broken femur, transferred several days later to a rehabilitation hospital and had absolutely excellent care.

All of it, or most of it, paid for by Medicare.

We have a supplemental policy which we pay for and we pay every month for our Medicare coverage also.

But without that wonderful government program, we would probably be hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt.

So thank you, Medicare.

And thank you, Lyndon.

We may not be in debt but we are in your debt.

And, by the way, Judy is doing better each day and will come home Thursday.

Friday, June 30, 2017


Good Friday morning to you, Gentle Readers, and a toast to the firefighters battling the Goodwin Fire in our area.

It is 43% contained as of this morning and State Highway 69 has once again been reopened after being shut down for a few days.

So with that and July staring us in the face, let's get right to the Friday Funnies.

(You "furriners" are welcome to celebrate our big national holiday, too, by the way.)

And with that, fellow celebrants, we bring this edition to a close.

Now whether you celebrate July 4th or not I want you to get out there and have a dandy, bang-up weekend.

Eat well, drink well and always remember to keep laughing.

Now where's that cat, anyway?

Oh, yeah . . . here, kitty-kitty . . .

Thursday, June 29, 2017


To give you Gentle Readers an idea of how much progress SWMBO/Judy has made since her accident and surgery less than two weeks ago, she visited her home this morning.

Two people from the hospital brought her in a wheelchair van to see where she would be once she's discharged next week and how she can get around.

In spite of the wheelchair, she had to walk down the hall (with the assistance of a walker) and get onto her bed, then get up again, then to the bathroom, into the shower, sit down on the bench seat, get up, then walk a few steps more in the hall, sit in the living room armchair, get up and finally be allowed to get back into that wheelchair again.

It was, by far, more walking than she has done in many days of therapy.

She barely lifts the foot on her bad leg but she can move along and doesn't complain much of pain, though I know she feels it at times.

The occupational therapist and the van driver and wheelchair-pusher were both very complimentary toward her progress and said she was doing great.

The therapist said she expected she'd be walking without the walker within a month.

I can't begin to express how proud I am of her.

In the meantime, the BRD brought her handyman over and he has since hung a blind on the back patio to shield the morning sun a bit, installed a grab bar in the bathroom close to the shower and is now building a wheelchair ramp in the garage.

Not to mention standing on the first step from the top of an eight-foot stepladder to change our a.c. filter for us.

He is a wunderkind and, like your scribe, is also named Bruce!

Judy called after getting back to the hospital this morning to say that the therapist today had spoken to the case manager and a meeting that had been planned for tomorrow has been canceled because she has made so much progress and so many questions were answered this morning.

Though it's a bit on the toasty side, the sun is shining brightly on us today.

As for the Goodwin Fire, which has been burning about 10 to 15 miles to the south of us, it appears that it is slowly being contained.

It has now burned just under 25,000 acres and some buildings have been lost but there are no reports of any injuries to citizens or the approximately 1,000 brave men and women who are fighting the blaze.

With lighter winds today and various lines holding, we may have finally turned a corner.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017


This is forest fire season in the Southwestern United States and we here in Arizona have not been untouched by it.

This was the view from the heart of my town this afternoon.

It looks terrible but the fire is actually 15 to 20 miles south and burning away from us, in the main.

Here's a couple of more pictures taken from the end of my street, just a short distance from our new home.

It's even further north than the previous picture.

And pardon the power lines.

As I noted, it's quite a long ways away from us even though it looks like it's right on the doorstep.

Now a quick change of subject.

Judy is making fabulous progress at the Rehab Hospital.

I was able to witness some of that this morning as I watched her do exercises in the Therapy Gym and actually walk a few steps between the parallel bars.

Her departure date has been moved back one day to give her a bit more time to build up strength but I'm very proud of her.

Meanwhile at home, I'm learning to do laundry and trying to keep the cats happy.

Judy's favorite, Muggles (don't tell Blackwell), had a word for her this afternoon just before I left for the hospital.

"Where the hell are you and when are you coming home?"

Monday, June 26, 2017


We only moved about 9 miles, just across town, and downward a couple of hundred feet but we have a new bird visiting the old birdbath.

It's a mockingbird and he loves getting into the bath and cooling his feet while he takes a drink or two.

We still see some finches, maybe a warbler or two and, of course, those dopey doves and maybe even a pigeon.

When the weather gets hot, like it's been here for about a week, a fresh, cool birdbath is a very popular spot.

Sunday, June 25, 2017


Yes, it has been brought home to us in the past ten days that we are, indeed, growing older.

I still hesitate to say "growing old."

As my memories of youth get further in the distant past I still hate to relent.

But in recent days, with Judy in a hospital, in surgery and in a rehabilitation hospital, I have been forced to think whenever I move about to "be careful, be aware, don't injure yourself now of all times."

It's not a bad idea to become more conscious of our aging bodies and the dangers that lurk therein.

I'm making big steps over obstacles even as I think unconsciously "but I'm not that old."

Judy is making singular progress day by day.

I watched today as a young man helped her out of her wheelchair, into a walker, then a turn and into bed.

But only one man, one person.

A day or two ago it took two people.

I am so proud of her.

I think she will once again be a new person, perhaps more careful, more judicious but beautiful with a fresh appearance.

I think, fondly, of something my good friend Tom Cochrun wrote to me recently:  "You'll never again be as young as you are today."