1.139 air plant, cleaning, tech stuff

Sunday, 4/19/2020

Yesterday I watered the air plants and today, one bloomed!

Back story: in 2015 Marian and I drove to Oregon for the SWBB games at Oregon and OSU. These basketball weekends always have a free day between games. For this open Saturday we decided to drive from Corvallis toward the coast, probably aiming for Newport. I can’t recall which of three possible routes we took; all involve narrow roads through forests, with occasional small towns.

Somewhere, Newport or one of the other small towns, we stumbled upon an arts and crafts fair, and among the vendors was a guy selling air plants. We bought one, a little ball of spiky curved leaves, and brought it home.

We set it on a windowsill, on a small green saucer that we had lying around. Every other time we watered the house-plants, we would dunk the air plant in a bowl of water to soak for 15 minutes; then put it back on its saucer for another two weeks. Over the years it has gotten slightly larger, so it now hangs over the edge of that saucer.

Once, probably in 2017, while I was watering the plant, I mis-handled it and one of its branches broke off. Rather than tossing it, I set the branch in its own little glass saucer next to the main plant.

Yesterday it was again time to water the air plants, and while dunking them, I noticed that the top leaves of the smaller one had turned a nice pink color. Oh dear, was it dying? It looked the same as always except for the color. This morning, only 24 hours later, the two-inch-tall plant has bloomed!

IMG_4977
iPhone pic. I shot several with the Nikon and, to my surprise, this was the best.

Sister in law Jean responded to my email celebrating the blossom, saying that there is a separation between the pollen and the stamen, so clearly it is not meant to be self-fertilizing. But it’s unlikely that the right insect will come by, so perhaps I should take a toothpick and move some pollen from the anther to the stamen, and then I might get some kind of fruit. I will do that!


On Thursday I turned in my menu for the week and I carefully and obviously marked a big X through the breakfast choices and wrote “NO BREAKFAST”. I thought that menu started today. In fact, I’m sure; last week’s menu finished on Saturday, I remember that.

Nevertheless this morning a server rang my doorbell at the usual time and handed me the full default breakfast including oatmeal and coffee. Whuuut? I was momentarily unsure about the starting date so I took it. But we gonna have a problem if they come tomorrow. Problem was, I had already made for myself and eaten a delicious breakfast involving green grapes, bread, and peanut butter. So I had to toss most of this one.


Then for two hours I got domestic again. Watered the plants, and fussed over them a little. Got out the spray cleaner and rags I was given, and Cleaned The Bathroom. All the mirrors and counters, the shower doors (both sides) and all the walls and floor of the shower, and the toilet, and wiped down all the stuff that sits on the counter. Done. If I only had my DIY vacuum… I looked on Amazon and there are decent looking cordless vacuums around $120. I sent off a cheerful email to Kim asking if she could ballpark the arrival time of the vacuum. If she can’t, or if it’s weeks, I may just buy my own.


Lenny, who wants to help the tech squad, emailed that she’d like to try TeamViewer, so after lunch we coordinated on that. Her hangup was the extra part of the T.V. install where you have to go into System Settings and authorize it for two permissions. That was a problem with Maggie yesterday, too. I talked her through that and then I could control her computer, and then ended that session and she was able to set up and control my computer.

Later Craig forwarded a tech call from Randy, a 4th floor resident I met while living down there. He “can’t get any mail” on his Macbook. Craig says he is hopeless with tech stuff; Craig couldn’t help him; he has probably lost his PacBell password; and “his wife has given up on him”, technically only, I hope. Anyway I should feel free to pass on this help call. Without actually talking to Randy I can guess that somehow his Macbook has forgotten the login for the POP/IMAP server at PacBell. I was helping someone work through those settings the other day, too. On the Mac it is partly in System Settings: Internet Accounts, and partly in the Mail app’s preferences, and… not something I would want to try to talk someone through on the phone. But he’s not going to be able to manage the TeamViewer install, either.

So I called Craig back and asked if it was legit to have somebody hand over their machine, in a bag, and I could disinfect it and probably fix the problem. Craig thinks that’s not allowed for us residents. However, the staff can do it. We have a new IT person, Vanessa, just come on board, and he will talk to her. So I’m off the hook for that Mac problem.


I mentioned I’d written to Kim (communications/marketing) about the vacuums. She asked Victoria (housekeeping) who wrote to me this afternoon that they have the vacuums and will be delivering them starting tomorrow! Yay!

 

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