Is It Spring Yet?

Haven’t been posting much.  Not much of note has been happening.

I did pass another hurdle on my quest for a new left knee.  Saw the cardiologist last week and he says that when I have a firm date for the knee surgery, I’m to let him know so he can manage the clopidogrel (Plavix), tell me when I need to stop it prior to surgery and when I should resume it after, etc., which amounts to cardiology clearance for the surgery.  I was able to get the authorization to see him through the VA renewed, which would include a heart cath or other such diagno$tic te$t$ that he might want to do between now and September, so that’s a big relief.

I go back to the orthopedist next week to actually try to set the date of surgery, get sent to the necessary “prehab” and all that stuff.  He’ll submit his treatment plan, which includes all that, to Triwest, which is the VA program for seeing non-VA doctors and having things done in non-VA facilities (i.e., in my home town instead of in a hospital 125 miles away!).  That’s the final hurdle.  If they give the go-ahead, then I’m home and dry, and I will get a new knee for my birthday.

At some point between now and April 15th, I need to get off my duff and file my income tax, which is a minor PITA, as PITAs go.  I’ve got all the required paperwork together.  It’s just a matter of making myself sit down and do it.  grumble. . .  grumble. . .   Probably take me less than an hour, if I’d just sit down and do it . . .

I’ve been really fortunate in that my knee only hurts when I’m actually standing on it; if I’m not standing on it, it doesn’t hurt.  However, since I have to stand on that knee to walk, my nonessential activities have been confined to very sedentary ones.  Mostly what I’ve been doing lately is reading. If you’ve noticed from the last post, I’ve been reading a lot of ebooks lately

I’ve been buying ebooks since 2010, and up until the last couple of years, I only bought them if I couldn’t get the book in any other format, or if the ebook was the cheapest format available.  When you are a voracious reader but have a very limited amount of discretionary funds (usually no more than $20-$25 a month, if that), it stands to reason you’re going to go for the cheapest version you can get of any particular book so as to optimize the books-per-buck ratio.

Depending on how old the book is, most ebooks on Amazon run around $9.99, but with the newer books, the ebook can be as expensive as the dead tree edition (DTE) in hardback ($26-$30).  If the book has been out for any length of time, you can usually find used copies, and the used paperbacks are typically the cheapest available copies of any given book (typically $5-$8 including shipping). Similarly, if the book has been out a while, and especially if it’s the first or second book in a series, the ebook price can be as low as $3 or $4.

Up until last year, what I would do was acquire the cheapest version of a book (typically a used paperback).   Those books I either didn’t care to finish, or read once and know I won’t reread, and which are inappropriate for my 14-year-old 1st cousin removed x2, I had been reselling through Amazon, which enabled me to recoup about half my investment. However, going into last year, I knew I was facing some major health issues and I deleted all my Amazon reseller listings (12-15) and donated all those books to our local Friends of the Library.  I will reopen my Amazon reseller account at some point,  probably later in the year, as I have already collected about 8-9 books that are not suitable for a 14-year-old.

However, in my never-ending quest for decent reading material, over the past 8+ years, I’ve acquired quite a number of ebooks. I tend to squirrel those away (out of sight, out of mind), as I’m kind of a purist, and the DTE of books are the ones that tend to get read first.  The ebooks take up the slack on the three or four months out of the year when I have to blow my entire book budget to acquire a new hardback for those books I know I will want to keep and reread over and over again (Foreigner series by C. J. Cherryh, Liaden Universe books by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, Sebastian St. Cyr books by C. S. Harris, etc.).  I just got the new C. S. Harris book.  A new Gail Carriger book, the final book in the Custard Protocol series (which I will get in ebook format), comes out in August, as does another Foreigner book (not sure when).

And speaking of my 1st cousin removed x2, SEL, (She’s my first cousin JP’s granddaughter), she and her parents K&GL were through here (coming and going) on their way from Colorado Springs, CO, to visit her uncle EP’s family.  EP designs and manages golf courses, and the company he works for sent him to the Austin vicinity to build and manage one there.  He’s relocated his family to the Dripping Springs area.  The L’s stayed with my mom on the way down, and on the way back, and it was good to get to see them.   Twice.  Her parents were both in the Air Force.  She retired (as a Lt. Colonel), but he’s now a full bird.

I’m still in reading mode and haven’t been doing much if any knitting.

I was watching one of Wee Sew’n’Sew’s podcasts, just to see what she was about, (she has such a lovely Scottish accent!) and she was talking about knitting the  Herb Garden Shawl which is a pattern I’m familiar with.  I had a lovely “6 degrees of Kevin Bacon” moment watching her talking about it and showing it off as a WIP.

The weather is starting to warm up.  It was 78F/25.5C on the thermostat the other day because it was 85F/29.5C outside.  It got back down into to the 50’s/30’s F(10/1 C) for a couple of days, but it’s heading back up again.  At some point here soon, I’ll be switching over to the AC, but the AC thermostat stays set on 80F/26.6C.  I may actually have to go into short sleeves . . .

Author: WOL

My burrow, "La Maison du Hibou Sous Terre" is located on the flatlands of West Texas where I live with my computer, my books, and a lot of yarn waiting to become something.

2 thoughts on “Is It Spring Yet?”

  1. When it’s about 24C in Ireland, all the radio stations, news websites etc. make constant warnings oh a “tropical” or “Mediterranean heatwave”, remind people to use sunblock, always drink plenty of water and stay in the shadow. It’s quite hilarious, especially for my BF who is Greek, so I guess the climate is more similar to where you live 😉 So please, beware of the heatwave and take good care of yourself!
    I also wish you all the best with the surgery and all the needed paperwork/ formalities/ whatever it takes to make it happen and not too far away from your home.


  2. I’m sure you’re ahead of me on this one, but I recently discovered that the tax forms have changed this year, as have several of the laws involving personal exemptions, and so on. I used to do my in an hour, but I’m setting aside an afternoon this time. I’m hoping it won’t be as complicated as it seems, once I get going. I don’t have to tell you about the essential nature of many “improvements” our fine government makes.

    I did a little more running the country to see wildflowers than I should have, but it’s been a fine year. South of San Antonio seems to have been the best area, and I have a little list of places to explore earlier next year. I was a little late this time around. On the other hand, Galveston’s Broadway cemetery seems just to be coming on , so we’ll see.

    That sounds like good news all around for your knee — and the rest of you, for that matter. I hope everything goes as smoothly as possible. My next project is getting two permanent crowns installed. I’ve been putting that off for no good reason, but I need to do it before the temporaries decide to present problems.


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