Ahem. . .Anyone still out there?

I’ve been flirting with getting back to this log for some time, and I always put it off for another day. But here I am.

I suppose I’m here at least in part because of a certain renewed confidence in my ability to manage computers. I defeated Microsoft’s attempts to squash me today (at least so far), and I feel a little rhapsodic.

I bought a new computer. I’ve been putting it off for years because I didn’t want to deal with Vista and it really fried me to contemplate paying extra money to have someone “downgrade” my computer to an OS that worked. But then Windows 7 was released, got pretty good press, and I couldn’t stand it anymore. The machine wasn’t supposed to come until January, but Dell cut their assembly time in half (or else they got a shipment of parts early) and Fed-Ex cut their delivery time in half, and my new machine arrived midday on Christmas Eve, a gift from Santa.

Last night I was wishing I had stood it a little longer.  As is my wont, I leaped in with little regard to manuals, instructions, pre-planning, and so forth. So I spent a couple of hours backing up old files to CD for transfer, fingers crossed the whole time. I dealt with file protection issues and waded through them. Then I booted my new machine and went through the setup and stuff only to discover that I couldn’t just load my files from CD. I suspect it has something to do with the shift from a 32-bit OS to a 64-bit OS. So I started over, actually following the instructions from Windows 7 on moving files.

It was less arduous that I was afraid of.

Then I got surprise number 2. There’s no e-mail program on Windows 7. So, fingers crossed, I loaded an old version of Outlook and–voila!–my contacts and e-mail archive appeared exactly as they had before I ran them through Windows 7’s little file transfer utility.

But I had a few permissions problems. MS has done a good job of trying to hide from Joe User anything that might be of any use to anyone, but I ferreted out the files I needed, gave the system permission to let me screw with them, and my problems went away. At least for now. All in all a satisfying evening.

So here we are coming up on 2010, and I haven’t posted anything since mid-2008. There are lots of reasons for that, some of which may appear in subsequent posts. But there appear to be a few stalwarts still looking for me to speak, so as the New Year approaches, I’m going to resolve to try to do a little better this year.

Here’s the Cliff notes version of 2009:

In February (pretty much on my birthday) I was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. I got to spend several months poisoning my body with yew extract and a platinum compound. Then I got to spend several more months letting my body recover from the abuse. If the truth be told, it’s still recovering. As I read somewhere recently, chemotherapy is useful, but it’s highly toxic.

On the plus side, I just got a clean bill of health at my 6-month post-chemo checkup. If I can maintain that condition for only 2.5 more years, I’ll be considered officially cured. This oddball apparently comes right back or it doesn’t come back at all.

In June I published my first book. That was pretty exciting. I spent the late summer and fall doing a variety of readings at some fairly prestigious venues (did you know people actually pay other people to come and read to a third group of people?). The book has been well received, so I’m working on a second collection.

Those two things pretty well ate up 2009. I can’t say too much about the second half of 2008 except that I think my brother’s death hit me a little harder than I thought it did.

But at any rate, I’m going to try to write here a little more often. And I have to type another sentence or two because my “word count” on this just hit 666 and I don’t want to leave it there. . .

Happy New Year to all, and the best to you in 2010.

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6 Responses to “Ahem. . .Anyone still out there?”

  1. Armin Says:

    Yep, still out here, still blogging away. Welcome back!

  2. OmbudsBen Says:

    Sorry to hear of your health travails, Marianne, but congratulations on the book. Let’s hope the new decade (yup, I’m one of those who counts the odometer ticking over of the aughts to the 10s as a new decade) is a good one for all of us.

  3. akentuckycreation Says:

    Welcome back. We corresponded frequently when I was living with my daughter in Oregon during her difficult pregnancy. Happy to say that the “baby” was born healthy and is now “2”. So sorry to hear you have had your own health battles. I look forward to hearing from you on a regular basis. Internet friends are another way to stay connected and feel supported. I will keep you in my prayers that your ordeal is over for good.


  4. Marianne Says:

    Armin, Ben, Lee, good to hear from you all.

    Armin, when are you coming to the states? There are some wonderful hikes around here.

    Ben, good for you. The less time spent in the aughts (I know everyone is writing it “ought,” but I’m a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to language), the better. On to the tweens and the teens.

    Lee, so glad about the happy, healthy toddler. Congratulations! I’m still hooked on White Lily flour.


  5. Josh Bancroft Says:

    Yay, welcome back to the blog, Marianne! 🙂

    Glad to hear your health is making positive noises. Sorry you had to go through all that.

    I’m still subscribed to your feed, so I’m looking forward to reading what you write. Take care! 🙂

  6. Philip Ferris Says:

    Hi Marianne

    I had you on my Google hompage but, with no posts for some time, it was minimised. I just noticed you’re posting again – excellent!

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