Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Of Minions, Pompadours, and a Forced Blogging Hiatus

"Wench! Hey you! Can you hear me?"

My ears perked up. Although I don't usually answer to "wench", I was in a new area in the library, the wifi area, and I was unfamiliar with the greeting protocol there.

"Your f*!#*&% minions are all in my 'shrooms! What do you think you're doing? Get them out of my 'shrooms before the gremlins are alerted!" he angrily rasped.

I hadn't any minions or gremlins or 'shrooms, so I exhaled, relieved he wasn't addressing me. I sneaked a peek at the agitated, grizzled man near me as he continued to talk animatedly into a blue tooth device, possibly about the computer game he was playing.

A woman in a blue Corona tank top stretched so tightly over a generous belly that its threads must have been holding on to each other only by their good intentions settled heavily into a table beside me. She pulled a laptop out of her shoulder bag and hacked into the crook of her elbow as she set a lighter on the table next to her. She wiggled and jerked at the hem of her shorts, wedged precariously high and sailing the high seas of cellulite.

I continued my blog reading and tried to type out a comment to my friend Pearl's funny blog, but was distracted when the 'shroom man cackled. "Oh, my little lovely...you don't know who you're up against! Enter into my dominion, try to enchant me, and I'll strip you of both your lives!" (And Pearl, now you know why I typed the opposite of what I mean on my comment on your blog- I'd entered into the wrong dominion.)

The Corona woman hacked again into her arm, this time so heavily it took her a few minutes to catch her wind. I watched carefully to make sure she was going to recover and she nodded her head my way. "I swear,  one of these days something I need is going to come up and out when I cough!" She turned back to her screen, wheezing.

A middle aged man with a pompadour and a tatted message on his forearm too lewd to print here sat at the table catty corner from me and turned on a tablet. Eyes glued to the screen, his face slowly creased into a smile as I caught a glimpse on his screen of what can only be described as a weird sort of porn. He looked up and winked at me.

With that, I packed up my stuff and headed to the office of the technology director of the library. He wasn't in, but I mentally noted some questions I want to ask him.

And that my friends, brings me to why I will be able to blog only sporadically, if at all, for a couple of weeks. We are experiencing internet problems at home (again), although we are paying enough money for it every month that we could probably fund a couple of third world countries back into solvency. Without mentioning the carrier coughcough*sprint*coughcough, they say it has to do with our rural area and we are imprisoned into a contract with them. Our son-in-law, IT man extraordinaire, and our daughter are coming to visit in a couple of weeks, and I am relying on his expertise to help us out of this. 

In the meantime, I'm using my slow and clumsy phone, and when I'm brave enough, the wifi area in the library for internet access. Please forgive me if I don't comment as often as I usually do on your terrific blogs. Even if I don't get back to posting on my own blog for a while, I will be reading, and when I can, commenting on yours.  

84 comments:

  1. LOL!

    For a moment, it was like riding the bus. :-) Had to listen to a man the other day go on about how the reason he was moving to Buffalo was because he was going to be a quarterback and he knew "how the system works". Needless to say, he was a weatherbeaten, mid-30s, early-40s-looking hobo-type.

    I wished him luck.

    Pearl

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    1. Pearl: Oh, I thought of your bus several times! And perhaps wishing them the best is all I can do with this group of folks. And hey- how does the system work???

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  2. I'll be waiting patiently for more of your terrific stories. I hope your son-in-law can figure out your Internet problem. Take care.

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    1. Stephen: Thank you- I'm absolutely practicing more patience than I thought I ever had.

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  3. Oh ick, what an unpleasant library experience. I had a long career as a librarian at a university library, so we didn't have quite those problems. I use our public library occasionally and see some negative behaviour there. That is good your IT expert will be visiting you soon.

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    1. Terra: Oh, I hope he can fix it. It won't be soon enough-

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  4. I'm so sorry, but your description of the library is excellent. I feel as if I'm there with you and now I need a shower.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. Janie: Oh, I wish you had been there with me, to help me deal with some of this stuff!

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  5. "could probably fund a couple of third world countries back into solvency" - Shelly this made me laugh. I love the way you word things lol. I hope your internet issues get solved soon so that we don't have to go without your wonderful posts for too long :)

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    1. Optimistic Existentialist: The internet just shouldn't be so subjective and utterly confusing. And thank you!

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  6. Hi Shelly, so sorry to hear about your internet problems. You sure made a visit to the local library come alive for us all in such a vivid and entertaining way. You make me laugh so much, Shelly, and your "high seas of cellulite" description did it again. I could not help but remember a time when I used to use the Fort Payne, AL, public library computers to check on my ebay auctions. I remember a clean cut and young couple coming in to use the library computers. After they had showed their IDs to the librarian she advised them in a loud voice, "I don't want to see any dirty pictures on your screen!" I imagine that must be a problem sometimes but I felt she greatly embarrassed them. Recently I took it upon myself to "install" a Comcast Ixfinity modem, it appeared soooo easy by the instructions. I was proud of the money I would save by doing it myself. In attempting this, I knocked out our cable TV service and at one point we could either watch TV or get online but NOT at the same time. A hundred and fifty dollars service call and we were back in business. :-( I still had to pack up the old modem and make a trip to a local UPS store to return it. Sorry for rambling on and on but this is a sore spot with us. I understand your frustration, Shelly, and hope you get it resolved soon. Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful writing talent with us all!

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    1. Cindy: I could feel my frustration bubbling over as I read your story. It just shouldn't be this difficult! And oh, what that poor couple must have felt at what the librarian said...ack!!!

      It's so good to see you back in the blogging world again!

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  7. Oh Shelly I have been where you are and ventured into the library free WiFi and yes your description of what goes on is very accurate. I had a wink and packed up once myself and it is a little creepy to say the least. Good luck with your internet woes I am sure it will be fixed by the Techy:)
    I am sure Pearl laughed at your comment she is like that with her amazing sense of humour and so huge it is scary too:) Hope to see you soon. B

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    1. Buttons: I am so hoping he can fix us right as rain! And yes, Pearl is hilarious!

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  8. Oh my....yes, just the other day I had to go to the main library to check and see if they had two books on the Texas Ranchers and a tales of South Texas....they're expensive to buy and I wanted to see if either one is worth the money from Amazon. Y'know? Anyway, at the library in downtown here...whoa!! A real reality check!! For me....'cause the patrons using the libraries computers are NOT anywhere close to reality. Seriously, kinda scary if you want my opinion.

    And as for internet access and cable/phone/what have you, nothing's cheap, and the customer service sucks!!

    Hope you get 'em resolved soon.
    In the meantime enjoy some time away and have a super holiday weekend coming soon.

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    1. PS...I had to stop by Pearl's Place and had a huge giggle about her heat wave. Sorry, but you and I both know just what it's like without A/C.

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    2. HOOTIN ANNI: I know that downtown library in your town, and it takes a special bravery to venture into the computer area. I hope you found the books worth it- those two sound like the things I like reading!

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    3. And I feel bad for those folks up north with the heat wave that is our everyday weather. I am thankful every day I am alive for air conditioning...

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  9. I hope your internet access is fixed soon--the library almost doesn't sound safe! But it sure provides some fun writing material;).

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    1. Maria: It is interesting people watching, that's for sure!

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  10. If we all pooled our internet budgets we could fund oh, my, how many third-world countries? I've been relegated to the public access experience on occasion. Probably haven't encountered characters so interesting as yours.

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    1. vanilla: What a bottomless pit it is, throwing our money at the internet carriers like we all must do to keep connected!

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  11. Oh Shelly, I feel your pain. Living in the country, I pay almost the equivalent of my house note every month to Verizon for Internet and cell phone service (which is excellent by the way). I am such a people watcher I fear I would never write a word sitting in the public library, I'd be too busy gawking. Hang in there girl!

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    1. Cathy: It is so tempting just to watch people and not get the stuff done on the computer I'm there for...it's a whole 'nother universe in that area!

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  12. Can you hear me now??? (LOL)

    Oh my, dear Shelly, you are a superb people watcher and your descriptions of the strange characters you encountered at the library were hilarious. I also loved your impression of Kevin Nealon as Mr. Subliminal. Losing you even for a couple of weeks will be a painful blow to many people in the blogging community, myself included. I know you will make every effort to get a few words through to us during that time but I will certainly understand if you can't. I hope you can get your internet hassles worked out sooner rather than later. In the meantime, please take good care of yourself, my friend, and know that I am thinking about you.

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    1. Shady: Ha! You always bring a smile. I am going to try my best to work it where I don't have to miss too many posts, if any at all. This is such a frustrating situation, but I'm hoping my son in law can sort it out quickly~

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  13. Sorry about the internet problem. Today we had it for some time and thank God we got it back. Sometimes just a flash flood does it here.
    Hope that all is well with you and your loved ones. Take care of yourself.

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    1. Munir: Thank you, my friend. We are well, and I hope the same of your beautiful family. Stay out of the heat~

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  14. Are you sure that you weren't in Walmart?

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    1. Felt Family: Hmmm- that's worth delving into my memory a little more about!

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    2. That was funny, sounded like Wal-mart to me too!! haha!

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    3. Jamie: If I'd had a grocery basket, it probably would have been one and the same!

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  15. And the thing is, if you just ignore the other patrons you'll miss so much good material!!

    We have frequent random outages of our internet - usually short, but sometimes a whole day. I can't believe how dependent I am on that little invisible signal :)

    Hope yours gets fixed quickly!

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    1. jenny_o: I've been missing this whole other universe and never even had an idea it existed. The internet is now so intricately wound up in us, and so very frustrating when it doesn't do what it's supposed to!

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  16. Dearest Shelly;
    The title of this post didn't give me any idea what the story of your post will going to lead us and not the first word, either (I had to check), haha. Oh, I can never imagine that kind of character being in the library p;) Anyways, not like your case; my husband is kind of a people watcher (cynically at times) at the restraint etc. and whisper me about what he finds around us. Sometimes makes me blushed...whew.
    It is great you have "son-in-law, IT man"☆☆☆ Internet trouble is always nerve wrecking!!! Well, for the last, I am the one who feels that your posting is not sporadically(*^_^*)

    Sending you lots of love and hugs from Japan to my dearest American friend, xoxo Miyako*

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    1. orchid Miyako: Oh, my dear friend, I'm so appreciative you always have the fortitude to plow through my posts, filled with idioms and other irregular expressions though they are!

      People are just the most fascinating creatures, aren't we? And I'm learning new patience with all out internet problems. Typing on the phone is so frustrating.

      Hope you all are cooling off, my friend!
      xo

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  17. Oh, dear! Blogging on your phone would be terribly hard. I hope you get everything figured out. My daughter and I were just talking about when we first got internet. I think it was in the mid 90's. It was dial up and full of advertisements and sooooooooooooo slow.

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    1. Sharon: I think of those times and that helps my patience now (a little)~

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  18. I would be having a chat with the librarian, Sprint customer service, and God, not necessarily in that order!

    So sorry for this happening to you.

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    1. Jeanette: Oh, I've had lengthy talks with the latter two, and when the technology librarian comes back, I will be talking with him. I'm on the library board, so this was an eye opening experience.

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  19. Where are you? I need to get to that library!

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  20. We have so many internet interruptions here in Sicily too, especially when it rains. I could not blog on the phone, I prefer to use the computer.

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    1. Francesca: Sicily and Texas must be very alike in their internet services. What a pain! Thank you for visiting, and I'm off to visit yours~

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  21. If I had to sit by those people if I went to the library I don't think I'd want to blog either. Especially with someone coughing up a lung... Didn't realize you could access porn in the library, but with wifi, I guess you can... Sorry. Drop in when you can.

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  22. I've used up my data cap for this month and have to use my phone which I don't like doing!

    Nas

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    1. Nas: My phone is so untrustworthy- I'm learning much patience through this.

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  23. I have a local writer friend who spends much of his time at our library. He told me about a patron clipping his toenails recently at the same table as my friend. We may live 2000 miles apart, Shelly, but we must frequent the same library!

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    1. Amy: A time warp maybe? You need to come over for coffee then!

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  24. You have just recreated the library where I used to work, nights! Add in some teen gangsters and you've got it just right. I'm currently in a blogging slump so you won't be missing much in my corner of blogland:) I hope your service is restored soon!

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    1. Jenny: I don't see how you did it! Libraries used to seem such a safe place when I was growing up, and now it seems like a magnet for all in life that's unsavory. I miss your posts!

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  25. That's frustrating about cough*cough*sprint*cough*cough. Hope you get it resolved soon, and in any case, so enjoyed your post today as I usually do!

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    1. Lydia: I will never be ungrateful about working internet again. And thank you!

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  26. Wow! Scary creatures in that library! I'd be scared to go back! Hope your regular computer problems get fixed soon.

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    1. Sherry: Thank you! I hope it is soon~

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  27. Pearl is so right about those characters -- whom you bring alive so expertly -- being like creatures from the bus! (I love Pearl's bus posts since I took a commuter bus to and from work my last five years on the job and got to know quite a collection of characters, too!)

    I'm so sorry that you're having Internet connection problems, Shelly. That's so frustrating, isn't it? Especially in a rural area where there are few alternatives. I hope your IT genius son-in-law can help get you back online soon! Even though I've been away from blogging for several weeks due to some family emergencies, I love both your blog posts and your comments and will miss your presence with both!

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    1. Dr. Kathy: Thank you! And these interesting folks surely provide lively fodder for the mind, don't they?

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  28. Wow, I need to visit that library for inspiration on fictional characters. Some of those people are wonderful faces (and bodies) to attach to whatever characters we're creating in our minds. Gotta love that hacking, tightly-clad lady!

    Internet problems stink. Hope your home gets back online soon. :-)

    Smooches...

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    1. Janette Dolores: Oh, thank you. I so hope it clears up soon- it's a real test of patience!
      xo

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  29. It seems you take your life in your own hands when you go to your local library! Ours is terribly boring in comparison! Best to stay safe and blog when you can!

    I'll miss your writing... just loved your descriptions in this piece :-)

    Write up blog posts in notes on your phone then get into a Starbucks (or risk your library!) and transfer them over?!

    xx Jazzy

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    1. Jazzygal: I never knew all this existed at our library! We don't have a Starbucks, but I am researching other wifi methods. Thank you!

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  30. Oh, Sweetie! I hate when I have computer or Internet issues!! You poor thing! I hope the kids can help you if you don't have the problems fixed by them. I've always thought that I'd have to use disinfectant spray on the keyboard if I went to the library computer. Or do you get to use your own laptop with wifi? How does your laptop know to connect with their wifi? See? I know nothing (can you hear Sargent Shultz?). I'm praying to the cyber fairies! :)

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    1. Rita: Ain't it the pits??? And in the wifi area, each person brings their own device to use, although there are library computers available. I am learning patience, for sure!

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  31. Shelly I am laughing and crying with you at the same time. I am having issues too, but I am not at the library yet. Hope you can get yours fixed. I am going to have to get a new one soon. :(

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    1. Sandie: And you, like I, probably remember when we did very well without the internet. Now, I can't hardly get along without it. Sigh~

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  32. Oh, my stars - riding the "high seas of cellutlite" ! :) And NOW you know why I NEVER wear shorts. Ever! :)

    Hope your IT problems are soon a thing of the past. Happy Sunday to you.

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    1. Marsha: Thank you! And her shorts were...well...just too short!

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  33. Dear Shelly, those pesky computer glitches! My server is AT&T and I've had so much trouble with them, although for the last couple of months all has gone well. Every couple of months I call because the company has once again charged me $5 or $10 more than usual. I'm thinking about going with Comcast, but really few, if any, servers have a good reputation. I hope all your problems work out, in the meantime, you can rejoice at having written the following, which just tickled my fancy--"sailing the high seas of cellulite." Peace.

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    1. Dee: I'll never understand all the ins and outs of the computer world. And thank you!

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  34. I hope you had a good holiday weekend Shelly!

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    1. Optimistic: It was wonderful! And I hope yours was the same~

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  35. If I didn't read blogs, I'd be so unaware of what's happening in everyday life. Like the Corona top - I wondered, "Is that some new designer top that everyone's wearing?" My curiosity led me to Google where I saw the bear bottle on the shirt. lol

    Your descriptions were great! I really got the "ugh" feeling that you must have had. :) I'm glad you survived it. As someone else commented, sorry your visit to the library was a bit nauseating, but it gave you a funny story to tell.

    Thank you for educating me on the potential perils of the public library. :)

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    1. Anita: I've been so naïve about the library. I only go in the book area, and this was a whole new world for me. Ugh is right! Thank you~

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  36. I think you were at my library!

    People are so unique. Sometimes a little TOO unique.

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    1. Christine: Some of those unique ones I never want to run into again!

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  37. Yowza!!!! Now that is one crazy library you have there. I'm thinking you should not go there alone after dark. I'm sorry about your computer problems. We have been on vacation and have had very little access to Internet, so I can feel your pain somewhat. It's really something how we've come to rely on it so much.
    (Very vivid descriptions of the locals hanging out at your library.)

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    1. Nonnie: You're right- we used to not have it and did very fine without it. It's taken over too much of our lives, I'm afraid...

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  38. Oh Shelly, I've been slow too blog but not because of internet problems, just busy, but there is nothing worse than a slow uncooperative internet - that would drive me crazier than the man in your library! Hope your up and running soon!!

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    1. Saimi: Oh, I have had to practice more patience than I knew I had! Thank you~

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  39. Finally here!!! Might have to save blog reading for the weekends, now that school started! Oh, gosh, doesn't sound like you'll get much quiet time to read in that library. Maybe a coffee shop with wifi? Probably a lot of distractions there too. When computer problems arise, I always think it is God telling me I need that time to be used for something else. Forced blog break. But I do read too much into things usually.

    And I'm not saying God is telling you to take a break, just trying to say, enjoy it.

    God bless you Shelly!

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    1. Jamie: Yes, I have been trying to find the positive things in it, although I will admit it has been so aggravating at times! Thank you, my friend!

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  40. I could have sworn I already commented on this. I know I read it!
    Computers and the Internet are amazing things. Right up until the time when they don't work!
    Throw cell phones into that list also.

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