What have I done?

zdbrgThere are always those moments after you do something big and bold when you ask yourself, “Oh God.  What have I done?”

I was out at my new property Saturday after mowing all day.  I built a small campfire before spending the night in my RV.   I sat in a folding lawn chair as I listened to the din of a million crickets and looked up at the stars.  I stared at the fire and thought to myself, “What have I done?”

I’ve bitten off the biggest chunk a person can bite off.  Or one of the biggest, I think, next to marriage.  I bought land in the country and started building a house all by myself.  I’m throwing away 50 years of lifebuilding to start a whole new life.  All by myself.  There’s something about sitting in total darkness in an empty field with nothing but a small fire to keep you company to make you feel alone.

Loneliness is not something new to me.  I’ve spent at least 30 of my 50 years in dire loneliness.  Most of it at crippling levels. Before that I was a child so being lonely is pretty much all I’ve ever known.  Never had a close friend.  Never had a girlfriend.  Just me.  Only me.  Ok.  I’ve had two cats and some fish over the years.  I don’t think that counts.

Of course, moving out to the country won’t make me more or less lonely.  I was lonely in the city, I’ll be lonely in the country.  No point worrying about that being different.

My concern may be that doing something as major as this all by yourself is an exercise in craziness.  It’s not like I have any options though.  My life goal has been to live in the country.  I almost died of heart disease a few years ago without reaching that goal.  I had best get my ass in gear if I expect it to ever happen.

I don’t really feel like what I am doing is wrong.  Perhaps it is just the fact that it is so radical.  Change is always a scary thing.  People move all the time.  20 years in the same house is certainly long enough, right?  I’m not doing anything that people haven’t been doing since the dawn of time.

Maybe the scariest part is quitting my job.  I have to quit if I’m going to have time to build a house.  There’s no way a person can work full time and still have any to spare in order to build a house.  I have to concentrate on it with all my attention in order to get at least the framing and exterior complete by the summer meltdown.

Financially, I don’t need to work full time anymore.  My savings afford me a life of basic leisure which I may just take advantage of.  I do have that strange feeling that, even though I hate working with a purple passion, work defines you.  It’s a stupid notion that may either be a standard due to the way life works or maybe some kind of government mind control caused by fluoride in the water.  I know it is stupid but there it is.  Some people retire and shortly thereafter, die of boredom.  Boredom has never been an issue for me.  I can always find something awesome to do.

I still have at least 10 years of work-life in me since most people don’t actually retire until they are like 63.  Still, that doesn’t sound right to me either.  The thought of working for 13 more years is more like a death sentence.

I think that maybe after 1-2 years of building and resting, I may want to re-enter the job market.  Part time.  20 hours a week would be more than adequate for some extra spending money without monopolizing my remaining life.  I’m sure there will be plenty of opportunities for an amazing guy who can do anything.  Something fun and non-stressful.

I might try working for myself as a Country Computer Doctor.  I’ll make house calls.  Get me an old doctor bag and a stethoscope. (You really can use that on a computer to listen for strange sounds from the hard drive or fans.)

I would enjoy being an electricians helper.  An electrician usually works alone but an electrician’s helper will always have an electrician to keep him company.  I like that.

My first job was in an office supply store.  I still have dreams about it.  I could go back to that.  Work in the computer repair area or the print shop.  They have part time positions.

I might like to work in a small computer repair shop.  Always thought that would be neat.

Maybe the local golf course needs a groundskeeper.

The possibilities are endless.  I shouldn’t worry about that.  Later.  It will take me plenty of time to get my house and land in order.  I might do something different every year.

I might finally have the time to meet someone.  It would be wonderful to have someone to visit me at my new place.  Someone to hot tub with on a cold night.  Someone to cook with, watch movies and go traveling.  Who knows.  Perhaps the primary reason I’ve chosen a solitary life is to be able to afford an early retirement in a self-built house out in the country.  Now that that is actually happening, maybe I can look into what I’ve missed out on.

Wouldn’t that be wonderful?  I’m hoping that people who live in small towns are more friendly than those in the big city.  Maybe I won’t be invisible anymore.  Maybe someone will be able to see me and say, “Wow. Check out that single guy over there!”

Let’s not over do it.  Invisibility is a powerful thing.  I sure hope the spell will be broken.  The witch who cursed me when I was a child didn’t say if there was a way to break it.  We’ll see.

So.  I feel better now.   It was good to get it all out again.  Much of this may be a repeat but the mind is repetitive.  It’s good to dump it out once in a while to keep it from overflowing.

 

Advertisements

Quick Restaurant Review – Jimmy John’s Gourmet Subs – Not impressed.

IMG_0510I’m a good fan of sandwiches.  Especially if they are made by someone else.  Today I decided to try Jimmy John’s Gourmet subs (#JimmyJohns) because I heard somebody recommend them once.   I’m not sure why I had never tried them before.  It just wasn’t convenient or something.

I went in and looked at the menu then placed my order.  There are only two choices of bread.  I ordered “French” which turned out to just be “White bread.”   The bread is almost breadless.  Its is really just crust with about 1 millimeter of bread on the inside.  Breadless bread.  Hmmm.  Not a good start.

I moved over to where they were assembling the sandwich but my view was blocked by metal covers that hinge up and down over the ingredients.  Hmmm.   How am I supposed to select my veggies?   Bam.  They handed me my sandwich.  Wait…. What??   You didn’t ask me what I wanted on it.   Ok.  I’m new here so I took my sandwich and sat down.

I unwrapped it and took a bite.  Hmmm.  It’s missing…..everything.

I went back to the counter and explained that it was my first time here and asked if they had pickles and Jalapenos and stuff.   They gave me some jalapenos but told me that they charge extra for pickles.   Hmmmmm.

I put the jalapenos on and ate the rest of my barren sandwich.  Filling but boring and not very healthy as it contained only Meat, lettuce and Tomatoes.  I would have liked mustard on it rather than mayo but was not given a choice.

As for the “Gourmet” part.  I need to look up the definition on Google.  Let’s see:

gour·met
ˌɡôrˈmā,ˌɡo͝orˈmā/
noun
  1. a connoisseur of good food; a person with a discerning palate.
    synonyms: gastronomeepicure, epicurean; More

    • of a kind or standard suitable for a gourmet.
      modifier noun: gourmet
      “a gourmet meal”

 

Nope.  Not that either.  Not sure if tacking the word, “Gourmet” on stuff makes it better.

Overall I fail to see how Jimmy John’s stays in business.  I guess it is regular sandwiches for regular people.

Personally, I shall not return.  If you just want a sandwich and don’t give a shit then this might be the place for you.  If you care at all, I would recommend Subway (#subway) where you get everything or even Jersey Mike’s (#jerseymikes) where you can get it Mike’s way with peppers and relish and have a blast of flavor.

Sorry Jimmy.  Not for me.

Subway Veggie Patty good alternative for Heart Disease Patients?

swvgptI’m a big fan of Subway sandwiches.  They are simple and easy and can be a good source of healthy nutrition for Heart Disease patients like me.

A few years ago I heard that Subway was trying a Veggie Patty meat alternative in California.  It looks like it finally made its way to the rest of us.

I’m always on the lookout for a good low Saturated Fat meal so I was initially intrigued.

The question is, “Is it safe for me?”  Let’s look at the specifications:

sbwntrtn

  • Although the Veggie Patty IS low in Saturated Fat at 1g, I was hoping for Zero.
  • The Total Fat is actually higher than all the other Fresh Fit sandwiches.  That’s not necessarily bad since that includes Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated which may be good for you.
  • It has 70 Calories from fat compared to 20-45 for the other ‘wiches.
  • Cholesterol content is Lower but not the zero you would expect.
  • Sodium is higher.  That’s bad for your blood pressure.  I guess they are trying to make it more palatable.
  • Protein content is actually higher.  I believe it contains beans.
  • It has MORE calories and carbs than the actual meat sandwiches.

Technically, the Veggie Patty’s score for Heart Disease Safety is, “Meh.”  It’s not really “better” for you than a turkey sandwich or a Veggie Delight which is my usual choice.  I think it is intended more for Liberals than an alternative for Heart Health but it’s not “Bad for you” like a Philly Cheesesteak with bacon.

So how does it taste?  Not being overwhelmed with it’s specifications I wasn’t really interested but I’m taking one for the team and giving it a try just for you.

Later…

Not bad!   I read a review the other day that said that it didn’t really have a “Taste” and they were pretty much right.  I get my sandwiches with Everything on them so I didn’t really Taste the patty as much as one might if they just got the patty on bread.  That’s fine.  It added a good texture to my usual Veggie Delite and the warmth was nice too since they heat it up in the oven.  It was also quite filling which the Veggie Delight is not.

I give it a thumbs-up!  I kind of liked it and would definitely have it again.  If a Veggie Delite doesn’t work for you and you absolutely HAVE to have something like meat then the Veggie Patty is a good choice in my book.  Make it so!

Better now

Sleep is often the best cure.  I went to bed last night at 7:30 and slept hard for 11 hours.  I finally felt somewhat refreshed.  It doesn’t help to have to push yourself so much that you lack sleep.  It keeps you from thinking clearly.  Soon I will leave my 8:30-5:30 job behind and time will do as I please.

I got over this incident fairly well thanks to the lessons I’ve learned in the past.  Remembering them is always the problem.  One of the primary lessons is to notice that your thoughts are in control.  Control your thoughts and you will be in control.  Sometimes you need to let it out though.  Repressing thoughts can only be done for so long before it builds up to explosive levels. Google Mindfulness.  It’s not an easy technique but it is very powerful.

If the problem is chronic like loneliness due to invisibility, thoughts are not the solution, only a band-aid.  However you have to use the tools you have on hand.

Fortunately I have things to look forward to like my new land purchase, retirement and house construction.  It helps a lot to have a purpose and goal.  I think my personal social life may best begin after I move to my small town destination.  People are friendlier in a small town and I feel confident that I will have time and motivation at that point to find someone to share some my life with.  Working full time really takes it out of you.  I don’t know how the regular people do it.

Big shout out to Phillip in the UK who wrote to me about being in the same boat.  Wish you were here, Phillip. (Or I was there.)  A boat full of people is not a lonely place. (Unless you count the last cruise I went on.  Bunch of ignorers.)  Hang in there.  Our time has to come eventually.  Right?  Surely.  A wise man one said, “Patience you must have.”  I certainly hope he was right.

Later today:

I’m feeling much better now.  Perhaps it was just being around people at work to help one not feel lonely.  I may be in trouble when I retire in this respect.  Fortunately there are other ways of being around others.  I will still get a part time job to help fill the lonely hours and there’s also volunteering at places.  I just have to make sure I don’t end up sitting at home alone with a gun in my mouth.  Nah. Never happen.  I’ll never own a gun.

 

One-Man Naked Volleyball Rules

During my stay at a nudist resort I took some time to play on the sand volleyball court. It was a slow weekend with few people around so I was alone. After practicing serving and volleying for a while I saw the scoreboards and decided to play a game. Here are the rules I came up with.

1. Get naked. Because that is the way volleyball was intended to be played.

2. Serve from one side. If the ball goes out of bounds then the other side gets the ball. If it stays inside then it is in play. This works best if the sand is rough so the ball doesn’t roll too easily.

3. Throw the ball up in the air backwards then volley it over to the other side.

4. If it passes out of bounds then that side gets the point. If it stays in then it is still in play.

5. Continue to volley until it goes out of bounds on one side or the other.

6. Keep score and play until one side reaches 15 points or you run out of energy.

I had a great time by myself and got a pretty good workout. Let me know if you ever want to play. Even though one-man naked volleyball is fun, playing with two or more naked people is much more enjoyable.

 

Star Ranch Weekend 2018

It has been a really long time since I’ve had a vacation day as well as having gone anywhere. We only get two weeks of vacation a year at my job and it goes quickly leaving you months of straight drudgery without relief. A new year has begun so it is reset and BONUS… Now we get three weeks. The best thing ever!
My poor RV has been sitting all alone in storage all winter. I usually go somewhere before it gets too hot but summer is coming fast. It’s the beginning of April now and the weather isn’t too hot yet so I squeezed in a day off on Monday, loaded up the RV and took off for the weekend to Star Ranch near Bastrop, Texas.

I went there last year and had a relaxing time. For those of you who just don’t get it, going naked is very relaxing. The other people there are much more friendly than the closed-minded clothing impaired people everywhere else. If you’re not a nudist, I cry for you.

It was about a two hour drive from San Antonio to Star Ranch but the time went by quickly. I’ve made this trip a number of times now and it has become a blur as I listen to my podcasts. The old 1982 Holiday Rambler motorhome purred along nicely. I just love old engines from back in the day before they got complicated. They are just simple engines and they work. It only gets 8 MPG but who cares. I don’t drive it every day.

I checked in and drive to a nice shady spot among the pine trees. After leveling out and hooking up I had a quick lunch composed of a fresh turkey sandwich and Cheetos. I lifted the 2nd half of the sandwich and the wind blew my paper plate containing a few Cheetos so that they spread all over the ground. Oh well. I shouldn’t be eating them anyway. Bad for you.

I grabbed my kindle paperwhite, a towel and my Yeti cup and walked over to the pool area where I found a lounge chair in a nice shady spot. I’ll get plenty tanned over the summer so no point in overdoing it right away. I enjoyed reading my book and watching two little boys who were the only ones brave enough to swim in the cold water. Kid’s don’t care. The two naked brothers kept us all entertained.

It was the day before Easter so they had an Easter egg hunt where you go out and write down the numbers on the eggs as you find them. The first one to find 25 eggs wins. I didn’t play. Maybe I should have. It would have been good for me to be more social.

After a few hours I went back to my RV and grabbed my volleyball. For some reason there is no ball on the volleyball court so I made a note last time to bring my own. Nobody was in the area to play with me but I didn’t let that stop me. I started practicing my serves and some volleys. It has been probably 20 years since I’ve played. Fortunately it looks like I’ve not lost my touch. Since I was all by myself I invented a one-man volleyball game. The rules will be described in a separate posting on this blog. Eventually the North Side won the game 15 to 11. It was a good game and I really enjoyed running around naked in the sun and shade that fell across the court. The whole time I hoped someone would show up but I had a great time by myself.

I was really tired after that. I must have played for two hours. My right hand is bruised from serving so much. I guess I won’t be playing tomorrow. I brought a tennis racket. We’ll see if I can find someone to play tennis with.

I was tired, sweaty and sandy so I went back to the RV and took a shower in the nearby shower building. Why use the tiny one in the RV when you have a real one right there. It felt good to be clean again. I got a little sunburned. It will turn into a nice all-over tan. Remember to use sunscreen tomorrow.

After returning to the RV, I popped a pre-composed stuffed salmon and broccoli dish I got from the grocery store into the toaster oven. In 25 minutes it was ready. I had been wondering if they were any good and now seemed like a good opportunity to try one. It was OK. I probably won’t get anohter one though.

It was starting to get dark so I decided to watch Forrest Gump. A co-worker had been talking about it and it has been years since I’ve seen it. Damn. Don’t have that one in my library. I watched Drumline instead. I was in the band in high school so I always enjoy watching this movie.

I went outside to see what the night was like. I could hear music in the distance. Something must be going on at the clubhouse. Not for me. I looked up to see the stars and immediately saw a satellite drifting gently through the sky. Not many stars were visible because the full moon shown brightly through a soft filter of clouds and pine branches.
Tired. Good night!

DAY 2
I slept rather well but had to turn on the Air conditioner. It was cool enough but the humidity was getting worse as the night went on. Glad I brought my earplugs because the A/C is loud. I imagined how I could redesign it to be quieter and not blow so hard all the time. Stupid engineer!

I woke up with the sun enjoying the view of the pine trees out my window and no other sounds but the birds chirping. (Once I turned off the A/C.) This is nice.
It was overcast with the occasional whisp of blue sky through the passing cloudcover. I imagined all the things I might do today but maybe I’ll just do nothing. I’m a bit sore from the big volleyball game yesterday so I might just take it easy and let the day flow. That’s the good thing about camping alone. You don’t have to entertain a guest or beg them to do something fun. You do as you please. Or not.

I had an egg for breakfast and watched some of my old episodes of Makin Stuff. I made five eipsodes a few years ago when I wasn’t working and had spare time. They are pretty good. I enjoyed seein them and it kind of motivated me to mabe make a few more. I love editing video.

I took it pretty easy today. Watched some TV, sat around inside and outside. I took a few walks around the grounds. This place is pretty neat. There are old cabins all throughout the woods. Some still abandonded, some fixed up and some in the process of being repaired. You can live here if you like. There are large green fields of flowers that are beautiful to behold. It’s something you don’t see every day. I appreciated my naked walks through nature. Also something you don’t get to do every day. In a better world everyone would be naked and it would’t be an issue.
I saw very few people here today. Today is Easter Sunday which seems to mean something to the regular people who have families. That’s fine. It was kind of nice having the whole place virtually to myself.

Day 3
I slept even better last night. I left the windows wide open and the fan on me so it was nice and comfortable under a light blanket. By morning it got quite cold and I grabbed another blanket and turned off the fan.

It was overcast, rather cool and dreary. A good day for going home. I stowed my stuff and checked out. The driive was smooth. I made sure that since today is Monday, I timed the rush hours in San Antonio so as not to be sitting in traffic wasting gas. I stopped at Buckee’s for a lite lunch and drove the rest of the way home stopping for a little extra gas as I entered the city. It was sunny and starting to get rather hot. Cold and hot on the same day. Can’t it just be perfect all the time?
I decided to try something different on the way home. Since my route took me past the RV storage yard, I parked the RV first and loaded all my stuff into the car. I cleaned the RV before I left so this would save me some trouble later. Worked out great.

It was really getting hot now. The first thing I did after unloading was rip off all my clothes so I could evaporate. How do you clothed people stand it?

Overall, it was a nice, relaxing mini-vacation. Two nights was more than adequate. Even though I relaxed I never did shake the feeling of being alone. That’s a tough nut to crack. In a better world, it would not be so difficult to find a friend who gets it.