Random 5 for May 22, 2022 – Shortages, oil embargo, neighbors, death, relatives

A cat after my own heart!

What? – Baby formula has hit the headlines but that’s not the only shortage. My local Starbucks has been out of mocha for four days! What’s with that? I must travel to another store to get my morning kick. Usually if they run out of something, it’s for a day or so. They get supply delivered a couple of times a week. Blight on cocoa bean trees? Russia hoarding the supply? Truckers rebelling against something? Another conspiracy story? If this goes on too long, I’ll have to hit the streets in protest!

Old memories – Speaking of shortages (or maybe not), the gas prices are painful. I lived through the oil embargo of 1973 when you had trouble finding gas at any price which was astronomical at the time. I had an hour commute to work each day, so it was stressful. There was no working at home back then. (The internet had not been invented. You want to get paid you had to show up.) I may not like paying the high price but I’m grateful that gas is available.

Different strokes – I don’t have much of a yard at my new house. Part backs up to a wooded area and the rest backs up to neighbors. One neighbor cleared an area in the wooded area and put a hammock in there. Why? I have no idea. I can see it from my home, and it looks like a tarp in the woods. By the end of the summer, it will look like a rag in the woods. He can’t see it from his home so I don’t know he put in my view. He’s not going to use it because it’s buggy. He’s also the neighbor that does crazy pruning – making mushrooms out of shrubs and hacking pompoms into trees. I’m more of a naturalist. If you put the right plant in the right place, you don’t need to savagely prune.

The dominoes start to fall – I have two older (much older) brothers and one of them passed away overnight. He is the first one to go. It’s sobering to think that we are the “old ones” in the family. RIP Joe.

Speaking of relatives – My grandniece moved into a brand-new home this weekend. I rarely see her but keep up through Facebook (yes, it does serve a purpose). I remember my excitement with my first all new house. It was magic. She also inherited the cat gene having four just like me and her mom! Bravo Jessica!

So how was your week?

78 thoughts on “Random 5 for May 22, 2022 – Shortages, oil embargo, neighbors, death, relatives

  1. Sorry for your loss Kate. I remember my mom, after my grandmother’s funeral, said “now I am the eldest in the family, now that she’s gone and it makes me feel so old.” I don’t know what possesses your neighbor to prune erratically and then hang a hammock in the wooded area – a few trips to the hammock and bug bites galore, will cure that new hobby. You’re right – he’ll be mad he put it up and just leave it out there.

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  2. I’m so sorry for your loss, Kate. Even with age as a predictable factor, it’s never easy. And this becomes an even greater disappointment that you’re having mocha shortages. We need our daily comforts!

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  3. I’m truly sorry for your loss, Kate. We can “do the math” but we are never really prepared. And I think you need your mocha more than ever. It’s a daily comfort.

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  4. I’m so sorry about your brother, Kate. What a sad time.
    I hear you on the supply shortages. I can’t even get what I want for the gardener to drink the day before his colonoscopy. Out of white grape juice and pre-made orange jello. I might have to make the jello from “scratch” haha.

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  5. So sad to hear about your brother. My warmest wishes to you, Kate.

    Brace yourself for more shortages. They can’t get supplies like fertilizer or feed for animals, so it’s all going to have a trickle effect. I recommend food storage, and perhaps buy some Starbucks products from the store and keep them stashed away. I mean, we don’t want you going into withdrawal symptoms and writing crazy blogs now, do we? 😉

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  6. Sorry to hear of your brother’s passing. Even if you weren’t close, it is still a loss. Has your neighbor used the hammock? It is odd that he didn’t hang it closer to his house. I would be very unhappy if I didn’t have access to chocolate every day.

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  7. Sorry for the loss of your brother. Hope Starbucks doesn’t completely run out of mocha for you! What next? I remember when we had to look for available gas. At least it is available now even with higher prices. Strange about that hammock???

    My week ended will with some much needed rain,

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  8. So sorry for your loss, Kate!

    I hope my siblings don’t die before I do…I am the oldest so hopefully I go first (as it should be).

    Not at all at the same level, but I found out a day ago that one of the groomsmen from my first wedding suddenly died. He was my age. It really shocked and saddened me even though I haven’t spoken to him in at least a decade. A nice guy. Hit kinda close to home.

    Deb

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  9. I’m a coffee person, so I understand your loss and send you my sincere sympathy. I’m also sorry about the loss of your brother. I’m an only and always thought it would be a great comfort to have a sibling, but as we age along with the comfort comes the loss. It’s always interesting how people put things in their yards that they can’t see but others are subjected to. I could write a post about that. 🙂

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    • I could too. Two houses ago, the next door neighbor put their kids trampoline 15′ from my deck. It was at least 30′ from their house. They had a huge yard and could have put it anywhere but I got to watch kids bounce. They also did not cut down two dead trees. Both fell in my driveway while they were on vacation. I had to clean it up myself. I put it in the street in front of their house. Their driveway was too far to haul or I would have blocked their driveway with it. Doofuses!

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  10. I am so sorry for the loss of your brother. It’s been nearly 10 years since my family of choice started dying and around that same time since my actual relatives, the older generation is completely gone now. Getting older is not the fun I anticipated. It seems likely that of my generation, while I am the youngest I may be the first to pass. I always did like being first at things. I don’t know about my two cousins, that side of the family has walked away from us, i guess.

    On a lighter note, you have some of the most interesting neighbors. You and Ally both. I think you need to post pictures of this hammock etc. It doesn’t sound like it’s on his land, at any rate, so he has no right to privacy. And get that pea shooter. It sounds like you could sell tickets.

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    • It’s on “common land” with is a strip of wooded area about 20′ wide running between two groups of houses. It’s meant to be natural. It isn’t mowed, just trees and shrubby things that grow under trees. Now it has tree chips and a hammock.

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      • Then perhaps all of your neighbors should go in with you and become vigilante pea shooters. He is reminding me of my most hated neighbors in Shell Knob. They decided that they wanted private access to the lake and so cut down a bunch of BLM trees. They were rich so they paid the fine and had private access to the lake.

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  11. I’m sorry for your loss Kate. I’m not close to Other Brother or my sister, and Bro is way over in NZ, but family is family.
    May your great niece and her cats be happy in their new home.
    As for the hammock guy, that’s weird!

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  12. Sorry about your brother, Kate. I am an only and my Mom and Dad and any relatives that I kept up with are all gone. It is a strange feeling.
    That is crazy about your mocha. We just got home from the food store and I am still shocked how much shelf space is still empty and things we use are not there. I thought when season was over things would go back to normal but I don’t know what normal is anymore. I hope the guy looking for a place closer to work finds one pretty quick.
    Congrats to Jessica! It’s wonderful she has four cats! I know she just has to be a wonderful cat mom. I bet the cats will love all the new places to check out!

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    • My mother had a gentleman suitor (isn’t that a quaint term). He died a few years after she did. Even though I hadn’t seen him after she died, when he died I felt like an orphan. It was weird. I don’t like the term “new normal” but perhaps this is it. Jessica is a wonderful cat mom! So is her hubby! Definitely cat people.

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  13. I’m sorry for your loss. I do recall this is the sibling with whom you were not that close. Still, it’s a sibling. My part-time job is 40 minutes away. It’s very flexible, and up to me if I want to skip a week or not. Based on what I sense isn’t much work waiting for me this week, I”m thinking of skipping because of the gas. I had no idea there was a mocha shortage too — the humanity! 🙂 – Marty

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  14. Sorry to hear about the loss of your brother. My brother was 18 years older than me, so we didn’t have a relationship per se, but he did provide many good memories Until he got married and left me in the dust..lol!
    As for the hammock, it sounds like a job for a good pair of shears and pleading the 5th.

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  15. During the oil shortage in 1973, we had a gas-guzzling Pontiac. We quickly sold it to an American studying there (in the Philippines). A few weeks later, he came back and complained that it used too much gas. Why did he think it was so cheap?

    My condolences on the loss of your brother. I don’t have any older siblings, just one older cousin.

    You never forget your first house. When I got pregnant and we started looking for a houses to rent, my dad built a house for us. It was really cute.

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  16. I’m sorry you lost Joe.

    My only sibling is two years older than I am, which doesn’t give much lead time. Bob has already died once. His heart stopped while he was exercising at the Y. EMT men were also there, and they used paddles on him and got him to the hospital. After being in a coma several days, he woke as if nothing had happened. I hope he has nine lives like cats are supposed to.

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  17. It is especially tough to lose a family member – for any reason. I extend my sympathies to you and your family. As for your neighbor’s hammock, I guess I’m not all that surprised. People have no sense of other people’s “space” anymore. My evil twin would buy supplies and go erect a large fence around it so that I don’t have to see it – one that he would somehow need to walk around in order to get to his hammock. Oh, and maybe torrential winds could cover for me as I sneak out with a knife and make a few cuts in the canvas before cutting one side of it down…

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  18. I’m sorry about your brother. It sounds like you weren’t close, but it still hits home a little. And hammock guy sounds like quite the character. Good luck with that! You’ll have a nice new deck on which to watch his antics.

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  19. Condolences, Kate. It’s tough to lose family members. How is your other brother (the one with the “feisty” wife) handling his bro’s passing?

    The guy with the hammock is not a keeper. We’ll hope he sells soon. 😆

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    • I’m not sure. They were two years apart. Although neither of us were close to him, my other brother grew up with him so it’s sobering. Hammock guy seems nice when you talk to him. He thinks he’s “creative.” As an example he had to cut down two pine trees which were dead. He cut them down himself leaving a 15 foot stump (yes, you read that right) which is in our line of sight. He said he wanted to do something creative. Totem pole?

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  20. My condolences about your brother’s passing. It’s not easy to see your family dwindle. I don’t understand how Star$ could be out of mocha. I do understand how painful gas prices are right now. It’s astounding to see the numbers at the pump.

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    • Being retired we are lucky. We lump all our errands together when we go out so we don’t use a lot of gas. When I replaced my car last summer, I considered a hybrid but the cost was a lot more. considering I do about 3500 miles a year, it didn’t seem worth it. Now I’m having second thoughts. Sometimes it’s less about the money and more about the convenience and not worrying about it all.

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  21. Sorry for the loss of one of your brothers…..it makes us think about our OWN mortality when someone we know well passes away. A hammock in a “community” woods – cheeky I’d say of him and anyone that prunes their shrubs to look like mushrooms has to be a little ga ga anyway! (not that I don’t prune – but I prune dead stuff out and cut things back in Fall so they grow bigger the next year…..no mushrooming!). Ouch on the Starbuck mocha shortage. Fortunately we have our caffeine fix every morning at home as the closest Starbucks to us has a line that winds around the building and no parking spaces available outside – we settle for the fast service from our Cuisinart!

    Hugs, Pam

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