Seriously? What’s Next?

Things were going on as swimmingly well as possible, even as this global pandemic still has us sheltering-in-place.

Zion National Park

Until….yet another challenge presents– in what seems as another mountain to climb– to get to the other side of a semblance of normal (whatever that is anymore.)

And yet, mine is minuscule compared to many stories with devastating outcomes.

That said, still…in the middle of the night, when pain was shooting through my left eyeball, I found myself whispering that if I didn’t have any bad luck I’d have none at all.

To recap the last month: first there was the root canal less than a month ago. Peachy keen fun that was. Then there was a tooth extraction and bone graft a week later in preparation for a dental implant. None of this planned of course! The silver lining in all of that was four days of being face down in mashed potatoes. I honestly thought that was rather lovely as eating bowls of mashed potatoes is not normal fare for me.

I even sailed through the post oral surgery stuff quite nicely, without the need of taking strong painkillers.

I’m so badass!

Until this weekend.

It began with strange headaches…quite unusual for me…progressing to pressure and tingling. Then Saturday morning I wake up with a rash on my forehead.

“Lord have mercy this hurts,” I tell my husband in passing just before leaving the house on our early morning walk with The Poodle.

“What hurts?” he asks.

“I’ve got this stupid rash that showed up overnight.”

He takes a look and his response is immediate.

“That looks like Shingles.”

I thought my head was going to explode….and not just from a bout of shooting pain. Shit! Why now?! Why at all?! And, why on my face of all places!

For the love of God what’s next?!” I yelled, as I chugged down a glass of water and Tylenol.

“Well…It is the year of the cicada.”

In fairness, he was immediately consoling and understandably worried too. You’ve got to get that looked at before it gets closer to your eye.

My thought in that exact moment?

I need to make a trip to the store for Bob Evans garlic mashed potatoes.

So kind reader….This morning I had my first ever virtual doctor’s appointment. It was surprisingly pleasant though admittedly, for this 62-year old, surreal.

“Yes…it looks like shingles is what you’ve got alright.” confirmed the lovely young doctor. I tell her I had received a shingles vaccination six years ago but, after a quick Google search, I learned that particular type vaccine was only good for about five years. The new vaccine, Shingrix, I learned, works wondrously better but it is not always easy to find. The doc this morning confirmed this.

Hopefully, as soon as this bitch of a development clears up I will be able to get the new vaccine.

Lest you think I might be ready to throw myself off a tall mountain, fear not! Yesterday, for the first time since March 14th I was thrilled beyond belief to able to purchase this much coveted item. I am, over the moon with gratitude.

Who knew toilet paper could elicit so much joy and excitement?

Bliss-out peeps any way you can!

A Very Black Hole Indeed

There’s a lot of construction going on in our neighborhood. Four new houses are popping up and a couple of more lots are being cleared. This means noise (to include a barking Poodle), lots of construction debris, nails in the road and port-a-potties on the street. I was walking The Poodle just the other morning when a worker came out of one of the port-a-potties, leaving the door open in the process. It’s not like I’ve never seen the inside of one mind you. In fact, I’ve been in lots of them over the last twenty-eight plus years with all the marathons, distance races, and the like that I’ve participated in. But it got me to thinking about a toilet I saw recently while on my cross-country adventure with sis and company.

I know what you’re thinking.

This gal has to be mighty bored out-of-her tree if she’s writing about toilets.

Perhaps the strain of recent months has made her not right in the head, you think. Have no fear. I’m OK. Things aren’t perfect by any means and yes, 2014 is going down on record as one of the WORST years ever. And besides, the whole world seems to be going nuts! So, I’m thinking a little levity is in order.

Back to the toilet.

While on our travels we had stopped at a restaurant. I think it was in New Mexico, but my mind is fuzzy on this particular detail. Understand that it was a whirly-whiz of two weeks and included such fun as searching for a gator in Louisiana, bowling for the first time in thirty years with Alexandre-the-Greatest, a romp in the White Sands of New Mexico, and Blizzard overload at a Dairy Queen in Arizona. Anyhow when I opened the women’s bathroom’s toilet stall I saw something that I cannot recall ever seeing.

A black toilet.

Darth Vader Toilet

Darth Vader Toilet

Not just the seat or lid…but the WHOLE commode.

Admittedly, It took me quite aback.

Hmm.  I recall I stood peering tentatively into the toilet bowl with nose scrunched, feeling a lot more dubious than usual about the cleanliness of a restaurant toilet. OK.  It’s just my opinion (and you know what that means!) but I cannot say I liked the look of it at all.  In fact, I thought it thoroughly ugly. The toilet had a Darth Vader quality about it…as if The Dark One’s breathy, chilling, voice would rise up out of the commode as soon as I sat upon it.  It didn’t help that the bathroom was quite dark as well, with dark Terra-cotta tiles, dim lighting, and dark cement floors. I know it’s silly but I wasn’t comfortable. My psyche was thrown off just a bit with the Darth Vader image that was now stuck in my head. I’d almost rather use one of those squat type toilets prevalent in Italy, Japan, and other places around the world.  Yes, I’ve had my fair share of experience with that type of toilet, and while it’s true that it requires a certain skill and stamina (mastery of yoga’s Chair Pose comes to mind), it’s more sanitary and I wouldn’t have that heavy breathing sound in my head. Needless to say I didn’t hang around the Loo for long.

Still, this inquiring mind took over. Was this black toilet an anomaly in the bathroom world? So, when the opportunity presented I naturally turned to Google.

Well, who knew that black toilets are considered… um…glamorous?! Lots of folks love the bold, unconventional, stylish look of black toilets and other bathroom fixtures. Clearly folks, I’m behind the times!

Still, practical matters weigh in, so I hold fast to my original opinion of black toilets–worth not even two cents, I realize. Firstly, how can you tell if the toilet is really CLEAN? Not easy. In fact, lots of people commented that this is the number one downside of black toilet ownership. Ya think?!  One commenter who raved about her black toilet weighed-in, posting that “having a black toilet is more forgiving if you forget cleaning.” Eew….disgusting!

Secondly, and more importantly, it’s mighty hard to detect changes in your poop with a black toilet. OK…I know….ICK and EEW !. But, this is serious business. There are folks that need to monitor this aspect of their bodily function for medical reasons.  And don’t get me started on the subject of black toilet paper!  I need not say more.

Black Toilet paper is popular too.

Black Toilet paper is popular too.


So….It’s hotter than Hades outside but I think I’ll get my head out of the subject of toilets and take The Poodle out for a walk. Infinitely better for one’s head.