PhD

I never did a PhD. I did start taking classes once towards that lofty goal. Classes were in the morning before work. After a semester or so, with full time work, young kid and family, it became really hard to keep going. So PhD for me remained a Pretty Hard Decision, to pursue or to give up I was not sure then and not now also.

Yesterday I was on the phone with my friend, a university tenured professor and PhD to the boot. During our conversation he briefly mentioned that one of his friend got PhD after retirement. Somewhere in a corner of my heart, I felt a little bit of envy, may be a little jealousy too. I must have seen a ray of hope also and wanted to know more.

My fried explained that after retirement his friend got (Blood) Pressure, Heart attack and Diabetes, in short PHD.

Now it is not a pretty hard decision for me to stay away from that phd.

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A spur of the moment trip to Big Sur

Yesterday I became temporarily homeless for the day.  Contractor had told me a few days back that the floor guys would come and apply the final stain coating to the floor yesterday.  I need to go out of the house for the day.  Based on my experience from the initial two coats that were applied a few weeks back when we had to leave the house for three days, I thought if they apply the coat by early morning, I should be able to be back by the evening.  What I forgot to account for was that the same guys were supposed to stain the fireplace mantel also and that added hours to the schedule.  based on my earlier assumption I had no made any arrangements to stay anywhere.  First I had to make arrangement for my dog Skooby for an overnight stay at the kennel. By the time I made the arrangements and dropped Skooby off, it was 12 noon and 91 F, sizzling.  I had no plans, no place to go and decided to hit the beach and drove towards Monterrey.  As I was filling gas for the long drive, I realized that I had not been to Big Sur for a long time, specially after the coastal highway was closed during 2017 – 2018 for nearly fourteen months due to land slide.  So in a spur of the moment, I decided to drive to Big Sur, about ninety miles south of my house.  Boy, was I glad that I made that decision.  Coastal weather was fantastic, sunny but cool 64 F, not much traffic and the beautiful, scenic drive.

carmelmonastery

Carmel from Monastery Beach

BIXBY

Bixby Creek Bridge – most photographed land mark on the west coast

By around 4:30 PM, the temperature had dropped to about 58 F as fog was rolling in from the ocean. I decided to head back home but before I could call it a night it would be 3:00 AM in the morning after a late night movie, Avengers : End Game, and a late night or early morning dinner at Denny’s. The bed never felt so good.


All photos by author on June 5, 2019

A little humor

My aching waist is complaining

Desire to spend a life time with you

Is being confined within the four walls

Upkeep of which is slowly throttling my will

The aching heart is no match

For the constant reminder

Of the pain from areas I did not know exist

A clean floor reflects my sweaty face

As I ensure that it does not drop

And ruin a beautiful day

I don’t know what I am talking about

As the sunny day outside

Mocks my darkened face

A little humor maybe

To uplift my sagging spirit

As I contemplate the sun will set

Before I call it a day

 

 

 

 

Duct tape saved the day

Many of us may have a story about duct tape coming to the rescue in a sticky situation.  To that I am adding my recent one.

On Monday, May 20, we boarded the plane ready to return home after a week long vacation.  The day started early. As the shuttle from the hotel to the airport that we were supposed to take were full, we were forced to take an earlier shuttle.  That meant that we had to get up real early and had a long wait at the airport.  We boarded on time and settled down for a four hour flight.  I dozed off and on but soon realized that the plane was still stuck on the runway and departure time had already come and gone.  Curious to know what was the cause of the delay, I started to look around for an answer.  Soon I saw the pilot walking near where I was sitting and open an over head bin diagonally across where my seat was.  It was a small bin with a small black suitcase.  my mind raced through several theories.  I overheard the pilot saying to one of the crew member that he can’t take a risk.  Soon a ground crew with a yellow vest arrived on the scene and opened the bin.  He took out a screw driver and tried to fix something.  He gave up after some try, went to the back of the plane ( my seat was on the last row before the toilets) and started talking on the phone.  Obviously there was some argument and I heard him saying that he can’t fix it as someone had replaced a screw with a non-standard screw.  Sabotage?  Soon another crew member took the black carry on out of the bin and moved to the front of the plane and out the door.  Another ground crew  member arrived soon and things started falling in place.  The door of the overhead bin had come loose and the pilot did not want to fly as he was apprehensive that the bin door may open during flight and be a safety hazard.  The first ground crew could not fix the door as someone before had replaced the original screw with a larger screw and now the standard screw won’t fit. The second ground crew had a roll of duct tape ( red color for good measure) that both of them applied liberally to ensure that the overhead bin door stay shut during the flight.

You can see the end result on the featured image.  No harm done.  A small screw delayed our departure by forty five minutes but the flight itself after that was uneventful.    I shudder to think of the delay that could have been if we were forced to change plane.  Duct tape did save the day.

Windy City

I am visiting Chicago for a week with my wife and then drive to Iowa City to attend a wedding. Landed in O’Hare Airport late Saturday night and stayed overnight at the airport hotel instead of driving to the city late at night. Rented a car on Sunday morning from the airport and drove to Chicago Botanical Garden. It was a cold, gray day with forecast of rain. It was also Mother’s Day and place was full of visitors. The Botanical Garden is simply fabulous. Colors galore. Will share (or try to share) photos with my next post. My cell phone simply started acting up from the evening and going into a perpetual restart mode. Somehow or other I am keeping it working and hope it survives the trip.

From the Botanical Garden drove noth to North Dune State Preserve by the shore of Lake Michigan. बाद decision. Wind was howling and our bay area attire for cols simply could not stand up to the wind. It was chilly to say the least. Forgot our idea of exploring the shores of Lake Michigan and drove back to our hotel for the night. Evening was damp, windy and it started drizzling. We abandoned the idea od driving to Devon Avenue in search of a good Indian dinner and settled for a local Italian steak house. Best decision of the day.

Friday Freebies: It’s a Birthday

Well the birthday is not actually today but it is being celebrated today at the university where the university library is named in his honor.  His birthday is tomorrow, March 2.  But hey, it’s Friday, party time and I am sure he would not mind.  He most probably would have loved it today, being surrounded by young folks, many of whom must have Continue reading “Friday Freebies: It’s a Birthday”