New Awnings

The new awnings are up and they sure do cut down on the amount of sunshine that pours in through that bay window. The plumber was here all day yesterday and finished his work on installing a new toilet in the utility room and fixing the faucet in the bathroom. It is one of those that you select from hot to cold with the middle being about right. Had a female mallard duck on my roof this morning. Heard this pecking on the skylight over my head, looked up and she was looking at me. The male was standing there beside her.I couldn’t find my camera or I would have taken a picture of them.

New Awnings

Iwo Jima

By Abraham Lincoln

I felt immortal back then. I was mired in black volcanic sand on the beach at
Iwo Jima. Scrambling up that slope was as impossible when I had to do it as
it has always been.

The black lava beach was a nightmare and I remember looking at the volcanic
mountain named, “Suribachi”, on my left and the caves where Japanese machine
gunners sprayed bullets—we were panting and gasping for air to breathe.

As soon as I got on top and looked down into the volcano’s steaming crater, I
grabbed my shirt pocket and pulled out a pack of cigarettes—Camel—the Camel’s
slogan: “I’d walk a mile for a Camel” but it seemed like walking two or three
miles would be easier than climbing to the top of the steaming Suribachi
volcano.

I was young and felt I could do almost anything but I was already troubled
with breathing. I didn’t have Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) then
by had bronchitis and a touch of asthma.

Not related was my “flat feet” that kept me from standing or marching in
parades. I had a slip of paper that excused me from any of those activities.

Now, some 60 plus years later, I still have COPD and my breathing is an
ongoing struggle—I use inhalers to open airways so I can take a bigger breath
and I have oxygen bottles and oxygen concentrators that enables me to keep a
steady supply of oxygen going into my lungs. Without the medical treatments and
medications I use every day I would have had a stroke a long time ago. I am
fortunate to live now when there is some help available—a few years ago and I
would have succumbed to the disease and been a name on a stone monument.

At eighty years of age, I only have memories of how I used my life and what I
did to myself and what politics did to me. The tobacco lobby in Washington made
sure the Army had cigarettes in our C-rations and they all knew that smoking caused
cancer and heart disease but they gave every soldier a package whether he smoked
or not.

Iwo Jima

Sleep Apnea Test

By Abraham Lincoln

When I was wired for my sleep apnea sleep test. I had 24 wires stuck on my body–under my nose, under my chin, on my temples, behind both ears, on my head in my hair–in front and in back; on my chest, plus two wires on each leg taped on my shins. And, I had two belts around my middle.

Each wire end was stuck on my body with a strip of 747 tape (It is the same tape used to fasten the wings on 747 jet airplanes). It sticks good and pulled hairs off my legs and I don’t have hair on my legs. It also pulls chunks of meat off my shins leaving angry raw places–can I say, “Ouch?”

When I get to visit my lung doctor, who I really liked, to discuss my sleep apnea test, I will tell him that he should take the sleep apnea test before he recommends it to patients. I want to ask him if he has ever tried to sleep in one of those overused strip motels without air conditioning (And complaining about the heat gets an old window fan set on the floor turned on high).

My bed to be was camouflaged as an over sized mattress, askew on a bed frame, with fitted sheets tight enough to curl the mattress up on both ends and slathered with a twin size coverlet Grandma Moses crocheted.

I wore my socks in and out of bed, and my Wal-Mart leather house slippers remained stuck on the carpet by the bed until I left this morning. I was afraid to look under the bed remembering things I have seen at Motel 69. The bathroom was sparkling clean with linen towels, toilet paper and paper towels you pulled out piece by piece from a chrome holder screwed on the wall. The bathroom had the neatest wall switch I ever heard. You flip the switch when you enter and flip it when you leave but all that does is turn the light off. A fan still runs until you forget to hear it.

I was scheduled to arrive at 8:30 PM. I got there at 8:20 PM. I got help in learning how to turn on the Polaroid LCD television featuring the best Time Warner offered —it takes two flippers to operate it property. I figured out how to make the recliner lay back and when Larry King came on I went to sleep and was awakened at 10:30 PM by my technician who said she would be back in about ten minutes to put the wires on my body.

That’s exactly like taking a nap at home after lunch. Naps screw up my sleep time at night. I do it but try to look wide awake when my boss tip toes in the room and yells, “Fire!”

I did notice my Timex watch was dead on five minutes after eleven o’clock when I was wired up and told to get in bed. If I could have worked a deal with the devil I would have opted for a sleeping pill but that crony deserted me like everyone else did when the door slammed shut and the little camera came on and glared down at my body concealed in new pajamas and a voice said, “Have a good night’s sleep.”

I didn’t.

Sleep Apnea Test