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November 19, 2009

I'm Learning
Thursday. Well, sports fans, another rather nice day, this day: the sun out, the air cold and crisp, the attitude with a little attitude, the papers read, the breakfast eaten (I was hungry, I was), the day ahead. No word out of B&H on the camera I ordered, but the lack of information keeps you on your toes, keeps you checking your email for a shipping notice. They say a week from tomorrow, but then they said two weeks a month ago and so, well, at least I've not been experiencing buyer's remorse (yet), for ordering something I don't really need, probably shouldn't be able to afford and, well, you can add the rest of the nouns and adjectives. We've all been there. There are worse places to be.

There is a big difference in the way I've been feeling, these last couple of weeks/months. Maybe the effects of the inhaler for the lungs, maybe whatever this Flonase stuff might be up to in my nose every morning, maybe because it's colder and, who knows?, clearer outside. The air cleaner? The phase of the moon more favorable? The sun lower in the sky? Whatever it is I can see the mood shifting, the thought of, I don't know, driving somewhere and looking around less, um, unlikely. Things are shifting on their foundations. Where to live? Here? There? Up in the air? We shall see. Maybe there really are more chapters coming.

Later. Another longer than has been my norm walk, first a bus downtown, then a wander around Old Oakland looking for an outside bench-seat-table in the sun. The City Center is in deep shade in the mornings and sitting in deep shade on a cold morning is not my idea of retirement. You could judge the air temperature and comfort level by the way I was walking: earlier, on the sunny side of the street for warmth; later, on the shady side of the street to keep from overheating. Cold at night under covers, shirt sleeve weather in the afternoons. What is it again that keeps us here? At the end of the rainbow?

Don't make your nice readers throw up.

Too syrupy even for me, I'm afraid. Anyway, a walk around Old Oakland, a walk through the Chinese Cultural Center and nearby parts of Chinatown, a walk through Frank Ogawa Plaza in front of City Hall, a walk back home taking my time, passing a sake emporium and looking for pictures. A good morning, a good walk without tiring myself the way I did yesterday. I worked quite hard to build up an appetite for chocolate muffins and a cup of coffee as I passed the Café Madrid, but failed.

I say my appetite isn't as it once was and believe me, when I can't get it together for chocolate muffins (much touted here), you know I really am in new territory. That salad yesterday gave me heartburn and I was thinking, as I was walking, coffee wouldn't do me any good either. No reason to obsess over the acid stomach, it's not the same kind of acidity that led me to the operating table, but I wonder what they'd find if they took an x-ray. What kind of progress my surgeon made, what kind of mistakes he may have made, where it might be going in another ten years from the look of it. X-rays are dangerous, right? No need to have one. Not now, anyway, in Oakland.

We seem to be running a lot of pictures lately.

I'm learning.

The photograph was taken by Lake Merritt with a Nikon D3 mounted with a 105mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR lens at f 3.2 at 1/2500th second, ISO 200.