15 April, 2015

It's Getting There

Finally. Some of you might think the format resembles how this blog used to be, and you'd be right.

I got my fill of trying to work with WordPress. Yes, it's a powerful program, with all (and more) of the bells and whistles and stuff, that you could possibly hope for in a blog-writing environment. It just got to be too much for me. I wanted to write. I didn't want to have to re-learn how to be part of the IT crew again.

WordPress was taking all my time (well, all the time that I wasn't spending in the pool) and that simply was not fun. So, I dumped WordPress and InMotionHosting and went back to Google and Blogger, with a bit of behind-the-scenes stuff with Yahoo, or as I affectionately call them, 'Yayhoo.'

InMotion, I'll have to say, had the best tech support I've ever seen. In fact, too much of a good thing. It was really overwhelming, but in a good sort of way.

I had kept the old blog at Google's Blogger, because I was still having some import and formatting issues (read nightmares) with WordPress. It's a good thing too, because I want back to Blogger and revamped the blog. You'll notice some font changes and whatnot. The URL is almost what I want. That would be http://winjama.net. Right now, it's http://info.winjama.net. As soon as I figure out some things, it'll go to winjama.net.

I mentioned Yayhoo. The blog is maintained  or housed at Google and Blogger. The domain, winjama.net, that I own, is housed at Yahoo Small Business. It took me a day and a half to figure out the interface between Blogger and Yayhoo. Lot's of techno-babble to get there. I knew going in that Yayhoo's tech support sucked big time, from my previous time having tried having them host the blog when I first decided to leave Blogger. I didn't expect any changes this time around. And I wasn't surprised.

I spent about two-hours on the phone with Yayhoo's tech support. Language problems cropped up throughout the session, as Yayhoo's tech support is in India (or maybe Pakistan or somewhere). That was very frustrating. I finally gave up on them after 1) having my cell-phone battery discharge, and then after I recharged it, 2) my pre-purchased time expired.

I took that as an omen and tackled it on my own, figuring that if it blew up, not much was lost. Anyway, I managed to get stuff entered in the proper sequence, more or less, and it functions. All transparent to you the reader, but trust me, there's some magic going on between Blogger and Yayhoo to enable you to read the blog.

It's a start - er, a re-start, I guess. I hope you like it. Now, I can concentrate on writing and doing fun stuff. I'll still work at tweaking the layout and such but on my own time, when I feel like it.


02 April, 2015

And the Time is Winding Down

Whew! Well, nothing like some folks getting ready to head on their long journey back north to the land of snow and ice, and fast food and fast living, and big box stores, and stuff. What I mean is, life here kind of proceeds at a steady pace, especially for those of us fortunate enough to be able to stay here full-time.

I think there’s a big, very subtle difference between people who live here year-round, who may go back up north now and then to visit the grand-kids or whatever, and those who actually live up north and, essentially vacation down here for three, four, or six months.

It always lurks in the back of their minds that they’ve got to return north, probably to actually work. To the place where they have to think and worry about, property taxes (far and away more than similar taxes down here), co-pays for health care, other insurance costs, fighting traffic on highways and city streets, real rush-hours, and on and on. In short, all the reasons everyone wants to come down here.

Anyway, we spent the past four months hanging out with Denis and Vivien. Doing the pool thing most afternoons, going out to eat at our favorite joints, gossiping about other folks (nobody really does that here, I’m just sayin’), talking about how everything breaks or falls apart here, and not just because the Chinese make a lot of cheap crap, which they do, but because the environment here is intrinsically hard on everything.
Vivien Denis and Molly 02-Apr-15 6-55-27 AM
Vivien, Denis, and Molly - Ready to Go
And life gets into a daily pattern that is very comfortable, kinda like that old pair of Levi’s you wore up north that were soft and beginning to become holy (not in the Biblical sense). It lulls you into a feeling of complacency and well being. A feeling that this is how life should be lived. But then as the time advances, your chain get jerked, just slightly, as your neighbors realize they’ve been thinking about work again. And that creeps into the conversation, along with bits and pieces of tales of some of the things I mentioned above.
Vivien and Molly On Board 02-Apr-15 6-56-57 AM
Vivien and Molly On Board
As the time becomes shorter, you sense their concentration is becoming more focused on the return, and things they have to do to prepare to make that journey. There’s work to be done on the house, that can’t easily slip for another day because their days are becoming more compressed, and the list of to-dos is not getting much shorter.

Once in a while, emails and FaceBook intrude from up north, people begin looking forward to your return, so you might be able to take a shift or two for them, or can they assign a new task to you, or what do you want to do about this problem (that you didn’t even know existed, but by their question, you realize it’s going to hit you right between the eyes as soon as you step off the plane).
Denis Riding Shotgun 02-Apr-15 6-57-27 AM
Denis Riding Shotgun
So, Snowbirds (if you didn’t realize it before, you are one) not only get hit with concerns and worry that they themselves generate here in anticipation of their pending departure, but friends, relatives, and work relationships also start intruding down here, well before your return. The stress begins to build.

And we, who stay here year-round become aware of the change in the cadence of the daily life. Not so much for us, as it pretty much stays the same, but for our friends who are destined to make the long treks back north.

It begins so subtly. Sometimes, you’re not even aware of it, till one day, it clicks in your brain, Oh, that’s why they mentioned thus and so. They’re beginning to think about heading back north.Here they are, about as stressed as you wanna be. Leaving the idillic life behind for the Great North.
And They're Off 02-Apr-15 6-58-11 AM
And, They're Off!
They’re off on their journey back north, till next November. Fair winds, folks. We’ll be here, waiting, keeping the pool warm and the Belikins cold.

COMMENTS - Posted here as part of the message because I can't figure out how to transfer comments from InMotion back to Blogger.

Very well said. Hit the nail on the head.
First blog post that made me cry


Hi Vivien,
I’m glad you liked the post. I didn’t mean to make you cry, but I’m glad it got an emotional response all the same.
It just ain’t the same with you guys gone.

Little Bit of New Stuff

For those of you who are visual types, I mean very visual... That is, really, really visual, I present the following:

Up in the upper left hand column, you’ll notice something called ‘Winjama’s Window On the World.’
[Well, not right now you won't. Because of the switch back to Blogger, the gallery had to be redone using different software, but, I'm working on it and it should be up and running soon... Right now!]
Window On the World - Glass Shop
Our Window On the World

If you hover your cursor over the text in the column, you’ll notice some sub-menus that appear, drop-down menus listing the years from 2007 through 2015. If you click on any of the years, you’ll be shown in short order, a gallery of most of the photos we’ve taken for each of those years.

Altogether, there’s over eight-thousand photos. Feel free to look at as many as you want. It’s more or less a chronological listing of our journey to date here in Belize.

I’ve decided to break each year’s batch of photos into monthly items for that particular year. It was a lot of work, but I think it was worth it.

There you have it. I hope you enjoy the shots. Few if any are anywhere near professional quality. I never said I was a pro. Prolific yes, just not a pro.

COMMENTS - Posted here as part of the message because I can't figure out how to transfer comments from InMotion back to Blogger.

Hi Julian,

Faceplants are the worst, aren’t they? I done that three times, each time while walking my dogs along the seawall in town. It’s always tripping over tiny pebbles or sticks or something. You know it’s happening, and you seem to be falling in slow motion, but just don’t seem able to get a hand or arm up in time to prevent it. Thankfully, Haven’t done that in a couple of years (knock on wood).

Thanks for the speed info. That’s good to know. I’m working, as we speak with the authors of the Spamshield software that appears to be slowing the system from my side down drastically. Spamshield isn’t the cause, but the result. Anyway, testing is going on to see what’s happening. Things should get squared away soon I hope.