Random 5 for June 19, 2022 – Deck, peace, voting, neighbors, cognitive regression

Is this my deck and pool?

Chugging away – The deck is finally done. Yesterday, the day after it was complete and the contractor was completely gone, the weather turned iffy. It was cold and windy, so we did the bare minimum. Plants and cushions are out but finishing touches are not. Pictures to come but not today.

Living the life – After eight weeks of contractors, there is peace and quiet. There are no cigarette butts on the patio or piles of wood killing the grass. It was so chaotic. Hard to walk around without moving stuff. My contractor, while he did a great deck, is not neat. He says he focuses on getting the work done rather than waste time cleaning up every day. Whatever.

So, you think your vote doesn’t count – Just this week, we got a final count on a local election vote taken last November. The winner won by five votes. FIVE VOTES! For the mail-in vote you must sign and date the envelope. Some folks (about 200+) forgot to date them. I know how that happens. You prepare your ballot and sign it but decide to date it when you drop it off or mail it. Then oops! You forget to do that. The decision on counting those votes went up to the Supreme Court who said (unanimously) “yes, you have to count those!” My fix would be to eliminate the date entry. The envelope is coded so if you were using a ballot from another election, it would discard that. What other purpose does it serve? The receive date is what counts, not what you write on the envelope. Again, five votes!

Neighbors – In the course of my life I’ve had very few neighbors that I would consider great. Most were good neighbors, minding their business and keeping their property clean but I had three who were super neighbors. You know, the kind that sneak a strawberry pie on your patio before you get home from work. I have one now. I get so much useful information from her (no strawberry pie though). Last week she shared her “yard guy” with me. OMG! He’s reasonable; works fast; and is drop dead gorgeous. How could I be so lucky?

Sadly – We’ve seen some friends lately and they have aged. I’m not talking about gray hair and wrinkles. I’m talking about synapses not snapping. Chatter that doesn’t make sense. It’s so sad. Hopefully, I’ll pass on before I get to that point. I wonder if you know you’re talking nonsense?

So how was your week?

70 thoughts on “Random 5 for June 19, 2022 – Deck, peace, voting, neighbors, cognitive regression

  1. I’ve been lucky to have some great neighbors too Kate – they more than make up for the current crop of neighbors. With the exception of my neighbors on either side who have each lived there a decade give or take a year, no one knows my name, let alone a thing about me and the feeling is reciprocal. My boss informed me in 2017 that he was diagnosed with mild cognitive decline. It became obvious to me soon after him divulging this fact and he has progressively gone downhill since then. I can no longer make a suggestion, ask a question, without it being taken as a challenge, or I am told not to give him a lecture. While I am sympathetic to the issue, it is difficult navigating through our relationship on a daily basis. He is 75 and originally told me he planned to retire this year … it does not appear that way right now.

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      • It is getting more and more difficult every day Kate. I’ve worked for him since 2000, but we worked in the same office since 1993. We left the law firm and went out on our own in 2003.
        I have always told him I’d retire with him. He said he wanted 50 years of practicing law before he retired to be like his father. His father was still practicing at age 83 (probate attorney) but was diabetic, had an issue with kidney disease and died suddenly. My boss had to shut down his practice. So, this September my boss will be an attorney for 50 years. He has not mentioned retirement anymore and just extended the lease thru next March. If he retires next year, I will be 67 and that will be 50 years for me working … my first job was at age 17. I am looking forward to retirement and to enjoy having more time to myself.

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  2. Congratulation! I’m so happy for you that your deck is finally done – and cleaned up after. I look forward to the photos.

    My yard guy is 93. He is not eye candy but he’s a sweet old man. I can’t fire him. i figure at 93 he either desperately needs the money or he needs something to do that lets him feel like he’s accomplishing something. Either way, he scares the hell out of me and I’m constantly trying to check on him without being obvious.

    I had both parents with dementia/alzheimer’s. There is a stage at the beginning where they are kind of aware that they aren’t making sense. Then that stage is gone and you kind of miss it. I hope to be run over by a bus before I develop dementia.

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  3. “I’m talking about synapses not snapping.” I’ve had the same experience. A friend seems to remember the 1990s clearly, but cannot understand how to use her social media accounts; she forgets what they’re for. It’s weird and disturbing.

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  4. Oooh, eye candy landscaper…so jealous, Kate. Not only for finding someone who can manage a mower and rake but look good as well. Bravo. Looking forward to seeing final images of the deck project.

    Yeah, the non-firing synopsis problem is heartbreaking, especially with those who once before were sharp as tacks.

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  5. I have wondered the same question regarding as we age do we know we are showing signs of cognitive decline or are we the last to know? I have a friend with what I recently said was “early onset dementia,” and that I realized we are at an age nothing is early anymore. It just so shook me up. More happily, I’m so glad you have a very nice neighbor. Maybe you can drop a few hints about pies and see what comes of it. 🙂

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  6. Glad the deck is done. Nice pool. 🙂 Interesting about the votes. And how sad about your friends not making sense when talking. I wonder too if a person knows they are having a problem.

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    • I think they do at least at the beginning. The vote was interesting because it overturned who was previously thought to be the winner. Imagine winning an election 7 months after the fact!

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  7. It seems you had a good week with the deck complete – glad it wasn’t the one in the photo. Yes, votes DO count! I agree that getting it there is the important thing and that it should spell it out, step 1, step 2, etc. I want to be gone before I just mumble nonsense and not know it. Have a good week, Kate!

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  8. Congrats on the completion of the deck! It’s going to be a lovely summer. My head is so full of things to say, I am always way ahead and on to the next thing and feel befuddled and confused a lot. I think I still make sense but I am always looking for a word that is lost to me. My only consolation is that Jerry has the same thing going on too but not as much. I guess we will be forgetful together?!

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  9. Even though we have to wait for the “real” photo of your deck, I enjoyed the substitute.

    My late husband was an excellent cook AND he cleaned up as he went. I’m like your contractor. I concentrate on the cooking and end up with all the cleaning up after dinner. I’m not proud of it.

    Neighbors are fun. I have wonderful neighbors now, friendly, helpful, and understanding. No strawberry pies, though. Looking back on all the neighbors I’ve had is fun too. Even the grouchy ones make for fun memories. When I was a kid, our little group of kids thought the neighborhood belonged to us. We founded a club with membership badges and all which met up on the deck above the old man’s garage. We didn’t bother to ask him. Old Mrs. Torry wouldn’t let us run all over her, though. She wouldn’t let us pick all her cherries or throw things in her fish pond. Maybe she wasn’t as grouchy as I thought at the time.

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    • We had one of those clubs too. We picked mulberries. I love them to this day but they are hard to find. You need to find a tree because they are not stable enough for commercial trade. No one cared if we ate them as there were several mulberry trees. The birds used to poop purple on people’s bed sheets during mulberry season.

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  10. So nice the deck is finished and you have a really nice neighbor!
    Losing your marbles is a particular fear of mine having watched a couple grandmothers lose theirs. But my grandfathers, mom, or dad didn’t…so there’s hope. I’m glad it doesn’t bother him. That has to be awful when you know.

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    • My mom had a little bit of confusion the last few months of her life but it was from the congestive heart failure. Both brothers (one died at 94 and the other is 92) are sharp as a tack so I’m hopeful. My husband’s brother is lost in his head. Doesn’t recognize people. So sad. Gotta keep those marbles active!

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  11. Hooray! That picture cracks me up and should win some kind of WP award for photo irony. The “… rather than waste time cleaning up every day” comment sounds typical from this contractor, and yet another blow for any chance you’ll give him a recommendation. I am glad that you have him out of your hair finally. I look forward to the real pictures. 🙂

    In her final two years, I think there were at least moments that my mother knew she wasn’t making sense. So, yes, I do think at least some of the time people do realize it. – Marty

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    • I do too. My former MIL had some form of dementia. At first she was in denial but then we had to reassure her that we didn’t think she was crazy so she knew. I wasn’t around for the end but it’s never pretty.

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  12. You are poised on the cusp of a pleasant week with no construction mess. Congratulations!

    We watched one person lose his senses. He realized it at first and was angry at himself and the world. Mercifully, he slipped further and was more peaceful.

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  13. It would be a blessing indeed if you did not know you were talking nonsense. Not for the listener, of course…
    I hope I pass before I get to that stage. Unless I am already at that stage, in which case I am truly blessed 🤣.

    Deb

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  14. “They tell me that you’ll lose your mind when you grow older. What they don’t say is that you won’t miss it very much.”

    ~ Malcolm Cowley (1898-1989)

    Congrats on the deck and the new yard guy ~> the combo should make for a happy summer!

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  15. Hooray for the deck finish and new lawn maintenance eye candy. You’re living right, Lady. 🙂 I do so applaud your having a great neighbor. There are none of those here, but life does go on. The vote counting issues have gotten to be really important of late. 5 votes, wow, that’s what you call ‘really’ close. Aging is a real challenge and most of us try to do it gracefully, but medical issues do tend to get in the way. Sucks. I’m with you – move me along to the next stop, please.

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    • When we first moved to our last neighborhood, the neighbors were great. There were progressive dinner parties in the ‘hood and everyone was fun. Then people started moving. Mostly to downsize or for healthcare issues. My current neighborhood is currently going through a transition from the very old and frail to the just very old. My neighbor is about my age or a smidge younger. She’s a cat person what more can I say?

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  16. Hooray for the deck! Spouse ran into one of our older neighbors yesterday and said something similar about his conversation being mumbly and not really making sense. At least he has a much younger wife to look out for him?

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  17. I’m super excited for you that the deck is finally finished, and you still have some time to enjoy it! As for knowing if you are suffering cognitive lacking, my decision was to start acting crazy when I turned 60, ramping up the acting when I turned 65 and looking and sounding 90% crazy at 70 and 110% whacko when I hit 75. That way, whether I am or not, people will assume I am, and it will let me get away with saying and doing a lot of things my “sane” self would never allow me to do!

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    • That’s a great strategy. When I was youngish (early 40s) one friend’s mother had certified Alzheimer’s but still getting care at home. She had been a sweet lady with manners. She started to talk like a sailor and told you exactly what she thought. One day she told me I was sitting in her chair. I quickly got up and moved before I got a littany of curses. Eventually she needed to be in a nursing home. She had the aggressive form. She would yell and scream and hit people.

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  18. So glad the contractor is gone. Enough already! Our contractor would never leave a mess behind at the end of a workday…very much appreciate that. And we have a couple we used to have date nights with monthly, but haven’t since December. The wife seems to be having lots of cognitive difficulties, which they haven’t shared with us, but are fairly obvious whenever we correspond (They are also pet sitting clients.) Very sad to watch, and scary to think about it happening to us. Aging, as they say, is not for sissies.

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    • It’s been clear that something has going on for the past few years but lately it’s been especially troubling. It a reminder that might be me in another year or two or ten. We never know what the future will bring.

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        • Me too. My SIL’s parents were an interesting study. Her dad had a life altering physical disease that curtailed his life but his mind was sharp. Her mother’s mind was completely gone but her body was healthy. We would have debates on which one you’d rather have. Her dad would get despondent while her mother was usually happy.

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          • And in the end, we don’t get to choose what happens to us, and maybe that’s a good thing. Not sure I could choose between body and mind if I had to.

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  19. YAY on the deck being FF (finally finished)! If you love it then it was worth all the agony and waiting…..About chattering on about things that don’t make sense and whether we KNOW we’re doing it? I think the answer is no – eventually. I say eventually because once in a while I realize that I’m going on a bit too long about something I’m explaining or a question I’m answering (like this sentence for instance!). Enjoy that deck – “good things come to those who wait”…….especially that good looking yard guy……..

    Hugs, Pam

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