Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

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Home Again

I'm back from California after a relatively restful weekend in Oregon. I actually could have posted something yesterday because Lisa had me connect her father's laptop computer to their home network so we could try and download a driver that would let us properly manage the touchpad on the machine. (She wants to disable "tapping" on the touchpad, and the driver software on the machine doesn't even show tapping as an option.) But we spent so much time looking for the drivers (without success) that I decided not to take the time. I didn't really go to Oregon intending to spend a bunch of time sitting behind a computer.

Lisa and I spent most of our time together watching some of the train videos I bought in East Troy and playing Russian Rails, the Russian version of the Empire Builder train-game system. Lisa and I are very fond of these games, and we've gotten a lot of mileage out of our copy of Empire Builder, which the game's designer, Darwin Bromley, sold me personally at a San Diego Comic-Con many years ago. (That was possibly the best $20 I ever spent, as far as the amount of entertainment time I got out of it.) It's always a challenge playing one of the EB games for the first time as you have to get used to the new geography. Lisa and I can play a "classic" original EB game very quickly, because we both know the map very well; other variations take more time as we don't immediately know where the cities and resources are.

We also got out for a few walks when the rain stopped long enough to do so. During one of them, we heard a train blow for the crossing in Lyons, a couple of miles away. On a whim, we ran back to the house, hopped into Lisa's Vanagon, and headed over to have a look. That railroad line isn't good for more than 20 mph, so we were able to get ahead of the train, and Lisa knew a good spot down a side road where we could catch up to it. For a while we thought we had missed it, but presently the headlight came into view and presently a train of the Albany & Eastern Railroad passed us by behind a beatup-looking ex-Southern Pacific locomotive. We thought about chasing the train through to Lebanon, but it was late enough in the day that we didn't feel like making the time investment.

Flying back from PDX this evening on Alaska Airlines, I got upgraded, which was nice because the flight was completely full. The good news transit-wise was that there was an AirBART bus loading just as I came out of the terminal after claiming my luggage. The bad news was that the bus arrived at the Coliseum BART station just as a Fremont-bound train was pulling out, so I had the maximum wait time. At least I had no problem getting home, as I'd been able to drive to the station on Friday. OTOH, driving to the station on a weekday has its own risks. I think I found the only available space in the station parking lot that morning.

Monday morning, I have an appointment with my doctor for my regular diabetes checkup. For now, I'm seeing my doctor every three months. If the weight I took on the balance scale up in Oregon was correct, I've regained ten of the eighty pounds I initially shed after I was diagnosed, so I guess I need to get back on the program and start eating less and exercising more again. It has been difficult to do this while traveling, but that's only an excuse, and diabetes doesn't listen to excuses. I also need to remember to print out my blood pressure and blood sugar records for the doctor before I head out tomorrow morning. Overall the numbers are good, but I've had a couple of spikes along the way that worry me. I hope Dr. Matthews will be able to tell me how much I should worry about them.

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