Stuff happens

The good: I just figured out how to use WordPress on the Dell laptop Nancy used — and I dislike bigly.

The bad: The computer I used (large tower, 2 monitors, wireless mouse and keyboard) went to the Great Trash Heap. I brought a refurbished Dell home but it doesn’t recognize the mouse or keyboard, and only 1 monitor appears.
I’ll call in the morning, but I may have to go back in with all the parts to get help.
Other than that it was a nice day.

Keeping busy

I have several projects on a daily basis, none particularly interesting.
The animals and I have to eat and this also requires purchases and clean up. Boring.
Each day I try to fill one bushel-size box with stuff destined for a land fill. Much of this would burn, but that isn’t done in this area. Mornings have been windy and cold, a good time to stay busy inside. Dust. Boring.

I do a bit of landscaping every day, and some rebuild of fence where a couple of posts rotted off after 30 years in the ground. I’m also cleaning up an area under some trees where I had an outside workbench. It became a place for stuff that should have been discarded.
This area is under a row of Austrian Pine – obtained from the plant sale I volunteered with before they decided to go with “native only” material. I have just 5 and they are not happy. From the web I learned they “ look like they’ve had some “winter-burn”, caused by dry soils in winter and/or sudden and drastic temperature changes.
” Sure enough, that fits the Naneum Fan characteristics.
They are only 15 feet tall, but right beside them are two (native) Ponderosa Pines about 30 feet tall. They have two issues. I planted them thinking I would relocate them, so they are just 2 feet apart. Still, growing like weeds, they are next to the utility lines and too close to the buildings for my fire sense.
A neighbor (2.5 miles) has a personnel business of tree removal, trimming, and chipping. For him to work, I need to clean out the mess I’ve made over the last 30 years. Also, the trees along the driveway need trimmed, and I have a dozen brush piles that need removed.
The only good thing about all this will be the feeling when the project is finished.
Then there are horses. I’m working with Rodeo City Equine Rescue to foster the 3 Tennessee Walking Horses. These we bought in 2010 when Nancy was set on getting back on a horse and riding with friends. The horse she had been using was old, so she found new ones. Then the medical folks said “Bad Idea”!
We are in the beginning of this process. The horses haven’t been handled or trailered for 10 years. About every other day I get them in a small enclosure, halter them, and do a bit of ground training.
I planned on doing some of this today – but horses find wind objectionable. Things that shouldn’t – move and noise comes from all directions. Below is a chart of our wind today:
The purple numbers indicate the high wind gust for the previous hour.
I don’t like those sorts of winds either. So I decided to do errands in EBRG. I need gas in a can for the lawn mower, so needed to take a truck. At some time (when?) I had the radiator cap off and while the 50 yard trips on the place didn’t bother the engine, the 20 minute drive to town did. Just as I made the turn into the first store, the engine quite, steam came from under the hood, and the electrical power (steering & brakes) quit.
I, sort of, made it into the parking lot and out of the way. Then I found that my new iPhone was not well charged. I learned how to operate the phone on “Low Power Mode.” Triple A (AAA of Washington) was great in acknowledging where I was, and that I had a phone that might go away while we talked. However, the towing service had two truck issues today, so a driver was in Yakima getting a replacement.
About 80 minutes later, Kim of AAA called to make sure I was getting the service I needed. I explained, and she (in western WA) was able to check and tell me the driver was “on Canyon Road south of I-90 and heading north”. That told me the unit was less than 5 minutes away.
Because of Panic20/21 I had to ride home in my truck, facing backward, and perched up on the flatbed transport vehicle. The photo below shows the idea – but my truck was aimed the other way.
My truck is a 40 year old Chevy, so this may be the end of it – 10 years overdue.
I did use the 90 minute interval to walk to the grocery store just 2 blocks away. I ate an early supper while I waited, so did not have to fix anything but pour a glass of wine, after the animals were fed.

A boring week, except for the last few hours.
Hope things were better for you.

From the Naneum Fan,

A mix of things

A planning note at the end.

Tonight is going to be heavy on images. The first is frivolous.

I ordered a small cable to connect an iPhone to a tower computer. I need a USB-A to Apple’s Lightening connector. The deal I found was from Best Buy, and the item is in a small box that hangs on a pin in a store display. There is a plastic hanger glued to the back of the white box.
The white box came in a brown box; the volume of the white one is 6.2 cubic inches. The other is 334.7 cubic inches, or 54 times larger.
The two-dollar bill is for scale. It was not in the brown box. Nothing other than the small white package and air was therein. And, yes, it rattled in there. It took 5 days to come from 35 miles east of LA.

Now a prettier item.
Because of Panic2020/21 I need an official Certificate of Marriage for the Social Security Administration. The previous post showed a false one from our Book of Memories. Below is a modern certificate.

I am certain we never had any such thing. Note the last line –As appears in my office this 14th day of April, 2021

Actually, also appearing in the office that day was friend Dot. Dot is Nancy’s longest known friend. She and hubby Bill provided a party for us the evening before our wedding. I called and she knew where, who, and how to get the necessary Marriage Certificate. Good friends are a blessing. Thank you, Dot.

Next is a certificate saying a cluster of trees will be planted in memory of Nancy. This friend, Paul Baumann, came to us via the University of Cincinnati. The story, provided by Paul, is below the document.

With respect to the University of Cincinnati, I had one of the first graduate assistantships at the University’s Academic Computer Center and when I left UC in 1966, Nancy received the assistantship that I had held. The Center had an IBM 1620 and Calcomp Plotter. The 1620 was a second generation computer that was programmed to use a very early version of Fortran; thus, Nancy was exposed to the digital world during a period when most colleges and universities had not yet acquired their first computer. This exposure made her an early user of this technology in the field of geography, especially in the areas of computer mapping, GIS, and remote sensing.

When I worked in the Center, it was necessary at times to use an IBM 1410s employed by the University Administrative Office and an IBM 7094 maintained by the Med School. More than likely Nancy, during her tenure in the Center, worked also on these machines. To provide some historical perspective the 7094 was IBM’s largest computer at the time and it was based on vacuum tube technology. Cincinnati was one of the few schools to have three computers mainly due to its strong engineering program.

After leaving Cincinnati I kept track of Nancy’s career but it was nearly twenty years later, around 1985, that we came together again. This time we were both participating in the joint meeting of the American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing and the American Congress of Surveying and Mapping. The meeting was held in Anchorage, Alaska. One evening Nancy and you and Barb and I drove down south of the city and had a very nice dinner together. Nancy and I shared some of our experiences at Cincinnati. It was about this time that Duane Nellis who is now the president of Ohio University asked me to chair the NCGE’s Remote Sensing Task Force. Shorty thereafter I got Nancy to join the Task Force.
Over the next twenty years Nancy and I put on major computer based workshops at the NCGE’s annual meetings. These workshops were sponsored by the Task Force and were two to three hours in length. On many occasions we offered two such workshops at a meeting. They dealt with GIS and remote sensing. These workshops were physically and mentally taxing. One of the first workshops that we gave was at the annual meeting in Orlando, Florida. The workshop was held in a large room with 20 PCs situated on nice tables. There was a master PC with PowerPoint. The day Nancy and I arrived we had a late dinner and after dinner we went to check out the room. Our first workshop was at 8:00AM the next day. As we tried to boot-up the machines in order to load software and data sets we discovered that none of the machines worked. The machines were not plugged into any electrical outlets. Then we found out that the room had only one electrical outlet and there were no extension cords available. At midnight we were able to get one extension cord provided by the hotel. We connected this cord to the master PC and redesigned the entire workshop using PowerPoint. Over the years we had other such experiences in offering the workshops. Our last workshop was in Portland, Oregon. She told me at the meeting that due to health issues she could no longer participate in the workshops. I elected not to offer any other workshops after that meeting.

John now: The Portland (2011) meeting, being fairly close did not involve a long airline flight. She had been warned by her cardiologist about blood clots and other dangers because of a replaced Mitral valve. The next NCGE meeting was to be held at Texas State University, San Marcos.

A note from, Sharon, a more recent friend – one of the music group – wrote of the emergence of new life around their home. I had the same thought that day and took a photo of one of the piles of dirt and rock scrapped from near the front of the house. These were piled up as the new front to the house was begun a year ago. The red arrow points to a single Daffodil. I rescued many of the bulbs, but missed some.

I have set May 29th, a Saturday for a time to deal with Nancy’s clothing and other items. A friend will come from Moscow, ID so I’m thinking she can get here about Noon. We can work for a few hours, and have dinner (here or in EBRG). If need be we can do more Sunday morning, followed by lunch.
I am flexible on this, so if anyone has ideas let me know.
1-509-925-3304 or

That’s it for this week – from the Naneum Fan

Certificate of Marriage

I’ve not a lot to write about this week, but here are a couple of items.

I was told I need to have a Certificate of Marriage to accomplish changes with the Social Security System. I don’t think we ever had an official certificate. There is a page so titled in the white leather-bound Memories of Our Wedding book, shown here:
The ceremony was in a Baptist Church with both Catholic and Baptist officials. The writing is all the same (and very nice). My mother, the one witness, signed her own name. It seems odd, but it is what it is. I’ve no idea who did the rest of it.
Apparently, the SS folks now want an official document. This may be a Panic20/21 thing. Prior face-to-face visits – I’ve been told – did not require one. Anyway, Nancy’s longest-time friend, Dot S., went to the DeKalb County courthouse and came away with the required official paper; now in the mail. She knew where, what, and who – I hadn’t a clue. Thanks, Dot.

NEXT ITEM – – – – – – – –
Early this coming week I will deliver a letter to 3 of our local health people – all with the Hospital. The 3rd person on the list has been our eye-care specialist for about 20 years. He is also President of the Board of Commissioners of the hospital. {& I haven’t sent him an e-mail about Nancy, yet!}
– – – – – here is the letter – – – – –
Julie Petersen, CEO
Dr. Kevin Martin, CMO
Dr. Bob Davis, B of C

I currently have two issues with the health/medical system.

The first has to do with visit-triggered auto-surveys such as the one attached to this letter. [Only JP gets this.]
Note the visit date of discharge: 3/12/21
This is a 2nd copy of the survey; the original was returned.
I suspect there will be another survey because Nancy was discharged a second time from KVH on March 27th. She was transported to Memorial in Yakima. There she died.

A copy of her obituary is attached.

The other issue: Both Nancy and I have long had the “Donor – red heart” symbol on our driver’s license. When Nancy died early Tuesday morning (about 6:30) the fact of her death was entered into the donation registration list administered by LifeCenter Northwest.
Within hours, that prompted a phone call to me, at home.
I was questioned – probing disquisition – for about an hour about my wife’s medical history, social activities, sexual habits, and more than I can now remember. It is an understatement to say this was disturbing. I suggest you obtain a copy of the questions and ask yourself if you would like to be answering these within a few hours of a death of a spouse or family member.

There has to be a better way. I have suggestions, but you don’t need me to figure this out.

When I die there is no one to respond to the questions that I answered regarding Nancy. Therefore, I removed my name from the organ donor list.


– – – – – – – – END OF LETTER – – – – – –

Lastly, for today . . .
By the end of May I hope to have many of the official actions, that follow a death, taken care of. I’m advised there will be more for a year or so. I am alternating among those things, normal house and yard duties, and getting rid of enough “stuff” that Nancy’s clothes, related items, and possessions can be examined for dispersal (term?).
I will invited a few friends to help with this. Perhaps on the last weekend of May. Six weeks ought to give me time to clear the rubble.

That’s it, from the Naneum Fan

Looking back

Photos below from July 12, 1969

We were in Cincy from summer of 1965 until June of 1967. June 11 began “the long hot summer” in the City, including Avondale, just west of the University’s Scioto Hall tower where Nancy lived. I only remember a few things from the graduation time.
I remember the riots, watching from the balcony of her apartment. I remember seeing Jeeps with Nation Guard folks tucked under trees along the Campus walks.
The ceremony was held outside in the football stadium. Dignitaries were on a raised platform in the field. Mid-ceremony a large Collie came onto the field, wandered out to the platform, and anointed it with his pee, providing a highlight to an otherwise less than memorial event.
I also remember taking the photo of Nancy in the gown she wore. I did then, and still do think it is the best of the many photos taken of her.

The other two images were taken two years later. After years, scanning, and digital adjustments for the web, quality is not great. Shame.

Nancy’s father died when she was in 9th grade. Her mother’s second husband died when Nancy was on a 9 week tour of Europe; at the end of her time as a student at Georgia State University. Nancy flew home and missed the last few days of that trip. Just a short time after the funeral, she traveled north to graduate school in Cincinnati. Her mother did not handle the situation. Nancy went home to her mother and a teaching job at GSU. I went to The University of Iowa. Thus, our wedding was delayed by 2 years.

The car – Fordie, a 1935 Ford, was a company car that her dad drove for 2 years, then bought when the company replaced it. Nancy learned about cars and motor sounds with her dad and an elderly mechanic. It was her mobility when she got her driver’s license, and became our honeymoon transportation. Years later Fordie was sold to a lady who also had a childhood connection to ’35 Fords. She also had the money to have it restored to new-like status, and protect it, something we did not have the resources to do.

One of the many photos from the wedding. We had a joint ceremony of Baptist and Catholic, held in the church of Nancy and her mother. The catholic church was a few blocks away. We sat with the priest and minister and wrote the wedding vows. An audio recording was made; I think we listened to it once. I don’t remember a lot of the day, but do remember a child of the caterer tripping while carrying a large bowl of melon balls in the asphalt parking lot.
We stayed that night in a motel at Stone Mountain, then went back to her mother’s place to help her settle in to being alone again. Next we went to my folks place in Clarion, PA for two weeks before heading west to Iowa City. We stayed on there for 2 years after my degree, as an assistant in a research office, Nancy as a student. We moved farther west and settled in Troy, Idaho in 1974.

Next weekend I hope to have a few insights about “what happens after.”

{News of the hour: I-90 is closed in both directions because of snow and related accidents. Here: sunny, cool, windy}

April 3rd The 5th Day

Stunned at the void

First, I’ll suggest if you are new to these pages you can get the background by scrolling down until you get to the beginning of March, then read forward.
I provided Brookside Funeral with a text and photo (2019, April) of Nancy holding her violin. I have tried to show important things in her life that many may not know. Most will know that her career was that of a geographer at the college/university level. There is more of that aspect on the CWU Geography page.

Friend Elise has provided a ‘pdf’ of the obituary that you can see by following this link:
Nancy’s Obituary

The Funeral home – Brookside, Ellensburg – folks, Kelly and Charity have been great. On that page – Brookside – they have added the banner across the top, and the “remembrance” things under her photo. Please do not do those things. We planted lots of trees, some now 50 feet tall, and our Tulips and Daffodils are soon to bloom.
I have not yet gone there to see the guestbook nor the condolences. It is too soon for me.
While there has been much to do this week, the hardest was taking the obituary to the facilities where the Fiddlers and Friends played and asking if they could place the page on a bulletin board therein.

There is no service planned. Later in the year I expect there to be a couple of gatherings with sort of a theme list; maybe neighbors one time, musicians another, just friends another. I suspect these to be more spontaneous, rather than planned or elaborate.

Nancy’s ashes will be brought back to the Naneum Fan, her home for 32 of her 77 years.

There are several things about what happens when a person dies that I want to share with family and friends. That will have to wait, until next Saturday or the following one. They are just “things” and do not belong here.

Thanks for all the good thoughts.

The saddest news.

Nancy’s life ended Tuesday.

We were preparing for a move to the Rehab in Ellensburg during mid-day.
I was called about 6:30 am. with the news of her death because of pulmonary aspiration (blood in her lungs).
This was unexpected because her episode of bleeding late Friday had been suppressed by 3 am Saturday.
Her body did not cooperate.

This has been a sad and busy day.
I will write more later in the week.


March 28th Health post

Plan still unsettled . . .

Yesterday and earlier reports follow after this.

I have now had several phone conversations with nurses and hospital “care” workers. I have the feeling the initial view there was that they were getting an older woman with ‘just‘ a nosebleed.
Nancy’s year of inactivity, and then the fluid build-up, has left her immobile to a severe degree. Her damaged heart is not going to provide for much exertion or sustained activity.
A physical therapist came (about 11:15 am) and got her out of bed and for a walk in the hall. His assessment – conveyed to me later by another person – was that Nancy should be sent to a rehabilitation facility. This, I had already urged (explained) to two of the nurses for her room.
Insofar as she is quite rational (mostly), the “care” person (sorry, don’t know job title) questioned me about home versus a facility – because Nancy seems capable of making decisions for herself.

I need time to work with the Home Health folks here in EBRG to get in-home help, not just nurse and PT visits. But she needs to be in better physical shape, even for that. If she can’t get to that (low) level of physical shape, there is a good change she will need a long term care facility.

There are many moving parts to this situation, so very unsettled.
_ _ _ _
The hospital’s phone system got chaotic this afternoon. She was to call me after 3:00, but didn’t. When I called the system did not connect with her room. I called back. That connection sounded like someone was keying in a number. I switched handsets; that helped. But, she wanted to call me back, so I hit the off button. She didn’t call, so I tried again. Busy signal. Now at 9:00 pm I don’t know any more than I did at 1:30.
What’s the phrase: There is always tomorrow.

Hope your day went better than ours did.

March 27th – – Health post

Not part of the plan . . .

I tucked Nancy in bed and turned the lights down about 9:30 last night.
Then I came to the computer to write an update. A few minutes later she buzzed the phone intercom. Her nose was bleeding and she was using tissue after tissue to sop it up. I tried a more appropriate technique – pressure for 5 minutes, for a couple or four tries. As soon as the pressure was released the blood would flow again.

So, I put pressure on with one hand and between the two of us managed to clean her up, get warm clothing on, and get in the car. At that point I needed two hands and insisted she not release pressure for the next 20 minutes – our drive time to the ER. Repeated urgings during the drive worked and we were soon being attended to.

Pressure and nasal packing slowed, but did not stop the flow. The solution was a small “balloon” insert, then inflated.

The doctor and I talked through the next steps. I did not think it safe for me to bring Nancy home. Getting some in home care – beyond hour visits by nurses and physical therapists – was going to be a Monday to-do thing. Second option was to admit her to the hospital where we were. But, going through the ER to the regular wing without weekend Nose & Throat + Cardioloigst seemed to be a stretch. The best option seemed to be a transfer to the Yakima Hospital. Those providers have to agree, and did with the team lead being the Nose & Throat specialist.
Yakima County has had a larger Covid experience than here. They, therefore, want a recent negative test; another bit of a delay. She arrived there at about 10:30.
The hospital – newly named Virginia Mason Memorial Hospital in Yakima – has a very restrictive visitors code. I won’t be visiting, but there is a phone in her room. I know that because the nurse for today called to ask a few questions of me, and answer mine.
I will call there tonight and sometime on Sunday, and post what I learn late on Sunday evening.
Having been active since 6:30 am Friday to ~1:30 pm Saturday, I think it is time for a nap.


March update #3

A very busy week

Nancy is very ill but the episode last week was brought under control and stabilized. The unanswerable question is how long this can last.
Lots of folks are working to improve the current situation. There is not a cure, so we go day by day.

Saturday and Sunday were just Nancy and me at home, with a couple of phone calls to old friends. We were active – meals, pills, and potty, plus animal chores.
The hospital bed, partially working, was helping but . . .
The head and shoulders part was wood-beam supported, so that part could not be easily changed. See previous post for photo. We managed.

The non-working bed parts parts were switched out for new. Thus, in addition to the time Friday, Monday also included another 2 hour session (with more equipment). Nancy was home for this episode, moving to the recliner where she could watch the setup, and talk with Dylan as he worked.
Delivered at the same time was an Oxygen Concentrator.
This is about the size and weight of a larger Badger, 37 pounds, not meant to be portable. The company claims it is quiet, and sells a higher priced one that may be. This is not.
These things take most of the Nitrogen out of room air – leaving the Oxygen and minor gases. The concentrated Oxygen is sent to the patients nose via a long clear tube, called a cannula. The face piece can be either a small mask or the 2-pronged insert.
Nancy tried the mask Monday night. At about 4 AM – potty time – she decided “enough of that” and the rest of sleep time did not have supplemental Oxygen. The alternative will be tried Tuesday.

NEXT nurse & Physical Therapist
Medical care at home is covered via Medicare, here:
Home health care
Click outside the pop-up window to see the page.

I assume this is paid for via the insurance cost deducted from the Social Security payment, that began for us in 2009. I don’t know the cost then, but in 2021 it is $148.50 per month for each of us.

Nurse Dani took the lead for Nancy, arriving this morning, doing a health check, and explaining the Kittitas Valley “Home Health Care” program. Following her assessment and report – she expected 2 hours of office work to follow the home visit – then the Physical Therapist, Seth, was authorized to begin. He came in the afternoon.

A digression: Our mail route has three addresses within a few miles of each other with 1’s and 4’s and 0’s. The carrier must have trouble with numbers – we often find other’s mail in the big blue box. Seth called from a neighbor’s to say he was early, but in front of our house.
By looking out the window I assured him he was not at our house.

Both nurse and physical therapist returned. Somehow the blood drawn was not what the lab was expecting. Someone called here looking for Nurse Dani, who was long gone. I told the person to call the doctor or nurse at Cle Elum.
Seth got Nancy doing a few exercises. I guess he talks more authoritatively than do I. She does them a few times a day, and I got her moving and stretching her right arm (that with the recent break & cast).

When she left the hospital last Friday the discharge included an appointment in Cle Elum for 1 pm this Friday the 19th. The morning was busy with food, pills, and chores. For an unknown reason, just before leaving Nancy insisted she should wear the cast and sling. Not able to change her mind, that’s how we went. The first question Chelsea asked was “Why the cast and sling?” I told her it was a mental glitch, not physical.
After that we had a 40 minute discussion. Not much was new or resolved. The hospital doctor wanted it to happen, so it did.
Back home a message was on the recorder about Nancy’s 2nd dose of vaccine. {I got mine Thursday, am.) Again, the hospital wanted this to happen at home for her, but exactly when was hard to pin down. I returned the call and 20 minutes later Ellensburg Fire & Rescue Deputy Chief Rich Elliott appeared at our door. He stuck around about 15 minutes – there was no immediate reaction for Nancy. Six hours later, still nothing. Me? 36 hours and counting – nothing.

While I prepared supper, she watched much of a video of the Moody Blues live at the Royal Albert Hall. In a non-busy moment I may watch that. Then we came upon Joe Biden stumbling up the steps leading to Air Force One. We have missed most of the first two months of the new administration. Maybe that’s a good thing.

My old cheap flip phone quit synchronizing or connecting with my Bluetooth enabled Crosstrek. Nancy’s similar phone worked, so it is the phone, not the car. We needed another problem?

Nancy is now sleeping with Oxygen from the concentrator.

Check back next Saturday (I hope)
for news from the Naneum Fan

Best to all.
John & Nancy