"" Writer's Wanderings: September 2019

Monday, September 23, 2019

The Best Blind Band In The Land

This weekend we headed a couple hours south to watch our grandson perform with his high school marching band both at a football game and at the band show that is hosted by his high school, Jonathan Alder. This year one of the bands participating in the band show on Saturday night billed themselves as "The Best Blind Band In The Land." I was naturally curious. Then I was completely amazed.

It's a small band from the Ohio School For The Blind in Columbus, Ohio. Not only does this amazing group of students overcome their visual impairment to learn the music and play the instruments, they do it all while learning some amazing formations as well. Several of the band members must have some visual sense but the majority were guided by aides walking behind them. Everyone marched in time to the music and no one missed a beat that was obvious.

The highlight came when it was announced that they would do Script Ohio (an Ohio State Marching Band signature) but in Braille. I found myself clapping and smiling and admiring the pluck of these kids and their aides. The aides helped several kids to form the Braille dots on the field and when the two who were the "i" marched into place, the music reached the familiar crescendo for the two to do the bow to "dot the i". The crowd went wild. The kids might not have been able to see everyone but they couldn't help but hear the roar and the foot stomping in the stands in a show of appreciation.

The Ohio School for the Blind has been in existence since 1837. A look at their website shows a lot of innovative methods of education that not only help the kids to learn but also give them an opportunity to experience much of what they would in a general population high school. Click on the link and be amazed. And pass the word to anyone who might need to find this great opportunity for their child.

Monday, September 16, 2019

Happy Trails!

The nice thing about living near a national park is the availability of nice walking trails. We are fortunate to live near the Cuyahoga Valley National Park which, by the way, has no fee for entry. We have a beautiful tow path to walk along the canal and river that runs through it. And now we have a trail even closer to home.

Our community along with several other organizations have put in a trail from near our recreational area down to the tow path a little less than two miles away. The path is paved so it can be used by bike riders as well. And it is beautiful! It begins at the corner of Selig and Brecksville Roads in Independence and goes east.

This past Saturday was the official opening and dedication. We joined a lot of neighbors in celebrating in the morning but instead of waiting for the official ceremony, we took off down the path ahead of the crowds. I'm glad we did. It was a perfect morning and the walk was picturesque. The only problem was that there is a 8-9% grade for a good portion and the walk back was a little more than we bargained for. Today I have noticed muscles that I didn't know I had that are sore.

Along the way the path follows and crosses over Hemlock Creek and there are several historic sites. The old haydite mine being one. Haydite was mined in the valley until 2018. Haydite is used to make cement lighter for use in bridges.

Along the way are several benches (resting places for those of us puffing uphill) and one or two picnic tables. I'm looking forward sometime to a walk and a lunch. It's the perfect place. Thank you to everyone who helped make this possible.

Friday, September 06, 2019

Friday Funny--God's Laughter

This week has been a bottom-in-the-chair-fingers-on-the-keyboard kind of week. While it has been said that you should write the first draft of your novel straight through to the end without looking back and editing, I find that the editor in me keeps wanting to fix what I've just written. I go back and find the -ing words and make them stronger action verbs, eliminate the unnecessary -ly words, and see if there isn't a better way to say something without a "was" or "were" in the sentence. It all takes time and slows the process but it's a tough habit to break.

While I was praying one day this week during devotion time, I found myself editing my words. I wanted to make them just right. Habits tend to invade other areas of life. When I realized what I was doing, I stopped. For just an instant, I thought I heard a chuckle. God must have enjoyed my discovery. After all He is Father, and as children of His, I'm sure we contribute much to his laughter.

Thursday, September 05, 2019

Attention Kindle Readers! Chance to Save!

The opportunity to do another countdown sale has arrived.

I can't decide which book to choose however.

If you had the opportunity to purchase a Kindle edition of one these books, which one would it be?

I'll do the countdown next week.

Fort Lonesome

In A Pickle

Pickle Dilly

Ruby, A Novel

Remember there is always the option of purchasing a Kindle edition as a gift for another. It's easily done through email. There's a link on the side of the book's page on Amazon that shows you how.

You can also request a book through your local library. If they don't have it, they will usually purchase it and then you can download it from them on loan.

All sorts of ways to read your favorites.

Tuesday, September 03, 2019

Doing The Laundry Without The Laundromat

When we are on an extended trip, we always plan to do laundry somewhere along the way. There have been some really neat encounters we've had in laundromats around the world. We've met students in Heidelberg and had instruction in French accompanied with lots of hand signals in Paris. Iceland was another interesting occasion where we had to receive instructions over the phone from the owner of the washer and dryer at a small campground. There was nothing on the washer and dryer that looked even vaguely familiar for us to even guess about what to do.

All of that said, I found some suggestions online that sound feasible if you can't find a laundromat or don't feel comfortable. One of the suggestions is to use a gallon sized Ziploc bag. Your put a small amount of detergent or even shampoo if you have no detergent into the bag with water and your article of clothing. Zip it closed and agitate. Do the same to rinse several times and hang up the item to dry. When I hand wash items, I usually roll them in a towel after I've wrung them out. That gets out just a little more water and speeds the drying time.

There are several products you can buy that are a bit larger and accomplish the same thing but are a bit pricey in my opinion.

Another option to washing your clothes without going to the laundromat is to wear them into the shower. Now I will admit to doing this with a bathing suit to rinse the chlorine from it but I never considered wearing clothes in and washing them that way. Hmmm. Given the option, I'll go to the laundromat. In a foreign country it's challenging and fun and you meet the nicest people.

Monday, September 02, 2019

Scams, Scams and More Scams: Travelers Beware

Just about the time you think you've heard it all there appears to be all sorts of new travel scams. Imagine if all these creative scammers put their heads together for something good. We could solve all sorts of world problems. Well, until they come over to the good side, there are some more things we as travelers need to be wary of.

I don't click on advertising links that come into my mailbox. Too often scammers manage to make a website that looks just like my favorite online stores and if you click and try to order, they will have your credit card information. Now I see the same applies to travel agent sites. Some are bogus. Stick to the ones you know are reliable and make sure you go directly to their site and check the URL to be sure it doesn't look flaky--like having an extra letter or number or symbol in it.

Another one I hadn't heard of is connected to some hotels. Now I know enough not to give out personal information like credit card numbers when someone calls me at home. I never considered what might happen if someone called from the front desk of the hotel where I was staying and asked for verification of my credit card. Apparently there are scammers who will call your room appearing to be the front desk and ask you to verify your credit card number. If you get the call, tell them you will be down to the front desk to straighten it out. If the call is legit, the front desk will thank you and wait for you to appear.

There are several other new scams you may want to take a look at to protect yourself as you travel. They are listed in an article on Smarter Travel. It's mostly a matter of staying on your toes as you travel. If it sounds too good to be true, it may be. Stay alert out there!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...