Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Philippines: What’s next?

June 29, 2022

My landscaper is from the Philippines. His name is Nolie. I am very pleased with his diligent yard work. He recently vacationed in the Philippines for 3 weeks with his wife and 10-year-old son. They were thrilled to be back there.

Nolie told me that he voted in the recent Filipino presidential election and is overjoyed that Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. won by a landslide, replacing Duterte as President. Although Marcos is the son of a ruthless dictator (Ferdinand Marcos, Sr.), Nolie likes him, because Marcos and Nolie both were born in the same province (Ilocos Norte).

Marcos, Sr. was overthrown by a popular revolt in 1984 after 20 years in power. He and his wife fled to Hawaii, where he died in 1989 at age 72.

Imelda Marcos returned to the Philippines to bury her husband there. She was tried and convicted of corruption during her husband’s regime and was sentenced to 40 years in prison. However, she has not served any time behind bars. Obviously, the Marcos family still has enormous charisma and power in the Philippines.

We shall see if Marcos, Jr. will step down when his term in office is over. Presidents are allowed only a single 6-year term and cannot be reelected. Will there be a true democracy, or will there be a dictatorship again?

President Biden called Marcos, Jr. to congratulate him on his victory. Biden realizes how strategically important the Philippines is to us.

We shall see what the future holds.

This is Manila, capital of the Philippines:

This is Filipino folk art:

This is Filipino folk dance:

This is Pancit, a popular Filipino noodle dish, which I like very much:

There are 4 million Filipino Americans in the USA, and 367,000 of them live in Hawaii. They constitute 25% of Hawaii’s population.

The Filipinos I know are all very pleasant, friendly, and kind people. My doctor at Straub Clinic is Filipino and board certified.

I have never been to the Philippines, but I think it’s an interesting culture with an interesting history.

P.S. The 2021 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to a Filipino journalist, Maria Ressa, who championed freedom of expression in the Philippines. She was the first Filipino to be awarded that prize.

Giant Clam dies at age 40

June 27, 2022
Giant Clam at the Waikiki Aquarium

Last week, the 40-year-old Giant Clam (Tridacna gigas) at the Waikiki Aquarium in Hawaii died of natural causes after releasing a cloud of eggs. It was the oldest and most famous clam in captivity worldwide, which is why its demise was newsworthy. It had been a star attraction at the aquarium.

This clam was spawned in captivity and purchased from a clam farm in Palau 30 years ago. After moving to the Waikiki Aquarium, it grew to a massive 200 lbs. It dined on algae and plankton and was given no supplemental food.

You might say that this clam’s diet and sedentary lifestyle were absolutely boring. But, hey, that diet and lifestyle kept it alive for 40 years. Much longer than a horse might live. The life expectancy of a horse is 25-30 years. On the other hand, horses seem to have more fun than clams do, in my opinion.

My 12-year-old grandson wants to be a marine biologist and ecologist when he grows up. Science fascinates him.

There is so much to learn about the ocean and its inhabitants.

Lisa had the Covid

June 24, 2022
Lisa and Maria

I didn’t know that Lisa had the Covid while she was staying with us for 10 days (May 27-June 6) until Maria told me so last week. I was shocked. When Lisa was here, she developed a bad cough and a migraine towards the end of her vacation, but, I didn’t think it was the Covid. In fact, she took our home test, and it was negative.

Then, Lisa took the test again at the hospital where she works in Nevada, and it was positive. She called to ask how I was feeling. When I told her I was okay, she said she had the “Covid.” But I thought she said she had a “Cold.” Man, I really should have my hearing checked!

Anyway, I never bothered to test myself and neither did David. For all we know, we might have had the Covid. We both were asymptomatic and still are. Our vaccines are effective.

Even though you have been vaccinated, you really should wear your mask. Lisa was fully vaxed including 2 boosters, but she got sick, nevertheless. It’s because she didn’t wear her mask when she was in crowded social situations. And just think: She flew in a crowded plane back to Nevada, unaware she had the Covid!

On July 10, we will be attending a musical at a local high school. I am going to wear a mask, but David said that he won’t wear his. Very foolish of him.

Oh, well, you will die of something sooner or later. Covid? Cancer? Pick your poison!

Homeless in Hawaii

June 22, 2022

There is so much suffering in Hawaii. Many people, especially the elderly, are homeless. The local newspaper recently featured 2 women, who are in their 80s, living homeless in Waikiki, which is a mecca for tourists. Neither woman has ID, because it was stolen by other homeless people. Without an ID and not being vaccinated, they have limited access to shelters. Where can they use the bathroom, and where can they get food and water?

It’s a jungle out there. A dog eat dog world. Just awful! The social workers can do only so much. It’s overwhelming.

Doesn’t this make your own problems seem so petty and miniscule?

My arthritis makes me feel depressed sometimes, but at least I have a nice house to live in. I also have ID, medical and dental insurance, and enough money to buy food and pay my bills.

What have I got to complain about? Well, only arthritis!

I am so spoiled. I have everything I could possibly want in life…except perfect health.

If I had perfect health, I would be in Heaven!

Photos of my yard

June 20, 2022

I took these photos while walking around my yard. Some of these plants belong to my neighbor and hang over my fence.

Neighbor’s banana tree:

Neighbor’s sour sop:

Neighbor’s jackfruit:

My giant monstera:

Neighbor’s deck:

Neighbor with her dog:

Another neighbor with her dog:

Twilight – View from my carport:

Just pictures of my spot in Paradise.

What will David break next?

June 17, 2022

I am married to a big and tall man. So big and tall that he tends to be clumsy. And that attribute often gets him in trouble.

Back in the 1980s, we were in a lamp store, when David knocked over and broke several lamps. The store owner was very upset, as these lamps were antiques. He scolded David and told him he wanted to be compensated. David agreed to pay him with our home insurance.

Then back in the 1990s, we were browsing in a Mikasa fine china store, when David knocked over some crystal wine glasses. There were shards of glass all over the floor. This time, I was the one who yelled at him. The store manager came over and told me to keep quiet. “Don’t worry,” she said, “I’ll sweep this up.” She didn’t charge us, and, after apologizing, we left.

Fast forward to last Monday. David was at home, bending over to gather a pile of newspapers to throw in the recycle bin. He stood up, and his butt knocked over the dining table. The pedestal broke. The table was unusable.

What will David break NEXT?

Anyway, we went online and bought this new table from Home World in Pearl Ridge. It can seat 4 and, with one extension, it can seat 6.

What we like about this new table are the rounded corners and the center leaf extension that collapses like a butterfly into the table. No need to store the leaf in the closet. Halleluia!

We put felt squares on the feet of the table and chairs to avoid scraping the floor.

We also bought 2 tablecloths (2 sizes) from Amazon. We already have 6 placemats.

We’re all set.

Garden art to cheer you

June 15, 2022

Despite all of our troubles with politicians, inflation, violence, and life in general, don’t despair. Good times are just around the corner! Don’t let the bad news ruin your life.

There still is so much beauty in the world. All you have to do is look and see.

Here are beautiful oil paintings of gardens that are simply incredible. I think these paintings are even more beautiful than those famous garden paintings by the great French artist, Claude Monet (1840-1926), who founded the Impressionist style of painting.

“The Secret Garden” by Beata Sasik:

“Country Home” by Brenda Peake:

“Garden Flowers” by Janet Zeh:

“English Country Garden” by Daniel Sherrin:

“Expressions from the Garden” by John Lautermilch:

What do you think? I love these colorful paintings. I tend to prefer strong colors over pastels.

Beautiful art brightens the world!

So, be of good cheer, people. No matter what, the Earth will keep turning.

As Orphan Annie sang in that Hollywood movie: “The sun will come up tomorrow!”

Third time a charm?

June 13, 2022

This is David with a cordless stick vacuum cleaner. (May 2021)


We bought our first cordless stick vacuum cleaner from Amazon in April 2021. It cost $120 and lasted 6 months.

We bought another one (different brand). It cost $70 and lasted 8 months.

So, here we are, buying a third stick (different brand). It cost $100. Let’s see how long this one lasts.

The problem is that it isn’t meant for heavy duty cleaning. It’s meant for light cleaning. We have to clean the filter more often, that’s all. If we do that, then we can extend the life of this stick vacuum.

We already have an upright vacuum for carpet.

We use the stick for the vinyl tiles and planks and the porch. We also use it under the beds and on the baseboards. So convenient and easy to use.

It is more compact than a plug-in canister vacuum, which cannot be used on the carpet under the beds, as the brush lacks wheels.

I hope this new stick lasts a long time.

Hope springs eternal, doesn’t it?

Go with the flow

June 10, 2022

I retired as a legal assistant when I turned 55. Since then, I have traveled, published my memoirs, babysat my grandkids, played my violin, and maintained my blog. I also was a radio commentator for more than a year.

I am so glad that I no longer have to earn a living. David and I have enough funds to live on. It’s great to be retired!

Presently, I don’t have a frenetic lifestyle. At age 76, I have slowed down considerably mainly due to arthritis. My inflammation is just awful. It affects my knees, hips, back, shoulders, and colon. There isn’t much I can do about it. I just grin and bear it.

Fortunately, David and Maria are always ready to help me. More than ever, I am so grateful that I have a husband and children. What would I do without them? They are incredibly thoughtful, considerate, and supportive people. I love my family.

I am so happy that I have a nice house to live in, a nice husband to live with, and a nice family to be proud of. Who could ask for anything more?

I have had far more joys than sorrows!

I often sit here, reflecting on my life:

Beautiful view of the ocean. (Oil by Marina Levy):

Beautiful view of a colorful garden. (Oil by Flo Miyahira):

Both paintings evoke feelings of peace and serenity. They are simply lovely! It is so relaxing to spend time appreciating beautiful art. Balm for the soul.

I must be doing something right, because somehow my lifestyle has kept me alive for 76 years.

I just go with the flow.

Fun TV ads

June 8, 2022

I like to watch the TV ads for State Farm. They are very amusing. They make you want to buy their car and home insurance.

There is an ad showing NBA star Trae Young (5’10” tall) in a grocery store trying to reach for a product on a shelf above him. Along comes WNBA star Jonquel Jones (6’6″ tall), who has no trouble getting the box for him. Then, she, too, tries to reach for a product above her. Along comes NBA star Boban Marjanovic (7’3″ tall), who gets it for her. Hilarious!!!

The motto of State Farm: “Like a good neighbor, State Farm is here to help you.”

Trae Young:

Jonquel Jones:

Boban Marjanovic:

State Farm has hired other famous athletes such as Chris Paul, Aaron Rodgers, and Patrick Mahomes. They all are excellent actors.

Guess what? Those State Farm TV ads finally convinced us to buy State Farm insurance! We are now bundling our car insurance with our home insurance. State Farm has given us a significant discount.

Of course, we are aware of other car insurance ads. GEICO has cute gecko ads. We had GEICO for years. But, State Farm won us over, so we cancelled GEICO.

TV ads often grab your attention, and if they are well made, they can prompt you to buy their product.