Archive for the ‘The Things that Come with Age’ Category

Maybe I’m Truly Not Smart Enough for my Smart Phone … .

Well, I now know why people like these Smart phones and other clever models. Mine is now broken, it’s wrapped ready to be returned to the manufacturer and, even though the parcel hasn’t yet left my house, I’m missing it already. I tried to repair it. Honestly, I did. I spoke in my best Spanish to BQ, the manufacturers who are located in Madrid and I have to say that, by the time I got off the phone, I was rather proud of myself.

Okay, the phone is still broken but I managed that call. At the moment, my phone is more like a sex toy. It vibrates …. and vibrates …. and vibrates. I always charge all of my phones each night but now, with my Smartphone, I have to take out the battery at night, as the vibration is keeping me awake.

So, it vibrates, the icons change from big to small every two seconds, the pages change when they wish (one second I’m looking at my e-mails, even though I didn’t request that page and,, the next second, I’m looking at ‘settings’ and I didn’t request that one either. So, as it’s Easter, the parcel won’t be collected until next Monday (it’s not part of the Easter holidays here in Spain and then I’ll have to simply wait, while alternating two SIM cards between one phone.

Oh, the joy of life in the technical world …. .


Am I Not Clever Enough for my Smart Phone?

I’ve had one mobile phone or other for over twenty years and I’ve never had a problem in using one …. until now.

 Okay, so I’ve moved across from the bog standard mobile to a, shall I say, very smart phone indeed and, after three months, it’s still getting the better of me.

 It’s an Aquaris (this is not a spelling mistake) 3.5 and, though I bought it here in Spain, everything about it is in English. 

So the problem doesn’t lie there. 

I’ve joined WhatsApp and Viber and her lies the problem. 

I have a few students of English here in Spain and some of them are coming up in my WhatsApp application, appearing only as telephone numbers.  So I thought that I would go along the lines of giving these telephone numbers real names.

And it hasn’t been easy. 

The names of three of my students are Sara, Ana and Silvia.  Somehow, I have four ‘Sara’s listed, one of which is really Ana and then a real Ana.  Silvia is now listed as Sharon and then there’s Carlos and José who are listed as each other.  Try as I might, they’re not budging.  This dilemma made a very interesting class with one of my ‘mobile savvy (and more in the loop than I am)’ students, who has told me how to make Sara only one woman, stop Ana sharing her identity with Sara, make Silvia a student rather than my daughter and, well, make Carlos and José who they really are …. .

Thanks but …. er… well …. I’m still trying and, with sheet of paper in  hand to accompany my ‘more clever than I’ mobile phone, I’m managing to connect to the right people via my Aquaris 3.5 mobile.

Taking Care of Personal Machines

Personal Machine

The last century has seen great changes in ‘life as we know it’.  Having gone from living hand to mouth and through the industrial revolution, the people of the Western World are now far away from that hierarchy of needs and well into choice and comfort.  In our busy, and very technical, lives, we now need to think seriously about how we are treating our own personal machine (now to be referred to as PM) and making sure that it is indeed fit for purpose.  Here is a bottled breakdown of points for consideration:- 

Computer – situated in the head (the uppermost part of the PM).  This important part of the PM needs to be oiled regularly.  While some may be using brain training equipment, advanced education courses or maybe learning how to become a responsible adult, one must not forget that this computer, known as the brain, must also receive good nourishment (a good intake) and plenty of down time. Housed in the very same head, are the sensory systems of vision and sound, both helping the owner of each PM to navigate through the world as it currently operates. 

The Mechanical System – the rest of the PM.  Charged by the brain which is situated in the head, the rest of the PM carries out the duties needed to function well and achieve a good ‘best before’ date.  Its components include four limbs, extended and flexible sections which help the PM achieve its needs.  Lack of use of these limbs can cause failure to successfully perform tasks and eventually lead to a breakdown of the individual PM. 

The Cost of Running a Personal Machine.  Prices can vary, according to quality of intake and the responsibilities expected of the individual PM.  Like putting diesel into a petrol engine, getting it wrong can lead to problems.  The PM may start to suffer from sluggishness, corrosion, a full breakdown, or maybe even need to be written off’.  Whilst it is a good idea to insure your own PM, such cover will not lead to replacement, should writing off be the only option. 

Risk Assessments.  Some advanced PMs (e.g. those that made use of advanced education courses and can be classed as trouble-shooters) can be approached, as to what the individual PM needs to take into account when trying to reach maximum performance and that hopeful ‘best before’ date. 


In today’s world, there are a lot of machines out there.  Some of these lesser models (i.e. not the PM) can be enjoyed, given away and, indeed, thrown away.  With these types of machine (also referred to as computers, gadgets and gizmos), which may become personal to you, you can look after them or fail to care as, let’s face it, you can always get another.  Unfortunately, at the moment, while the PM can make use of minor replacements, it cannot be replaced by a true ‘like for like’. 

There are plenty of books for idiots (this is not a criticism but the name of a book style!), middle of the road books and advanced teachings, all designed to help the reader become aware of how to care for PMs, information being available at  local trouble-shooters’ offices, libraries and also via that ever popular desktop computer, laptop and smaller versions of this same disposable machine.  In general, care will take the form of suitable intake, running your PM through rigorous exercises (many of these can be done without being connected to a power source), understanding risk and sometimes seeking advice from those ‘in the know’. 

It’s never too late to start, is it?

Are They the Right Age to be our Friends ….?

Last week, a friend here in Galicia came up with a very interesting point.  She said that she and her husband don’t have many friends, the same as what my husband and I have been saying for our eight years here. 

I boiled it down to the fact that Hubby and I are lucky in that we have pensions and our house was completed (but for personalising) before we arrived.  Most of the people we know are still doing up their homes, so their time is taken up by hard slog.

 This particular friend’s point was somewhat different. She felt that, as the majority of English people living here are young and with children, we seem to have forgotten that they are a different generation.

 And yes, I can see that now.  While Hubby and I would enjoy a visit from a young couple or an exchange of chit chat, they probably think we are too old for them and would therefore have little in common.

 What happened to ‘wisdom is wasted on the young’? 

Come talk to us!  You’ll be surprised by how you will benefit from what we can tell you.




Been there, done it and worn the tee-shirt’, so to speak ….. .



And Did You Manage to Find your Own Seven Year Old?

Did you wake this morning, wishing that you knew a seven year old who could change the time on all of your electronic goodies?  Let’s face it, they would be able to do it in only a fraction of the time we adults would take!


My watches?  That’s easy, as I’m still on straightforward winders!

My mobile phones?  Who cares what time they say?

The computer?  It does it itself ….. doesn’t it?

I this , i that?  Don’t need them!

Film recorders?  Nope. I don’t watch TV.


Well, that’s me sorted.


How about you ……?

It Just Happened …. .

I don’t know how it happened ….. it just did.  One minute (and that minute lasted five years) I was eight stone five pounds (117 llbs.) and the next minute I was eight thirteen (125 llbs.)! 

  1. Could it be that I was spending too much time writing or talking to my students of English?
  2. Had I stopped caring (oh, please don’t let it be this one!)?
  3. Was my hubby putting too much on my plate (I am of the ilk that you shouldn’t waste any food)?
  4. Is it my age and my hormones, and not I, are now in control of my figure (odds on favourite, I think)? 

Well, I’ve had my son, his girlfriend and their new baby here for twelve days, before heading to the south of Spain AND I’VE LOST 2 POUNDS !!!!!!!  In weight, that is! 

Not only will this be as a result of all of the running around I have been doing but I am now resorting to cherry tomatoes for breakfast.  Nothing else – just cherry tomatoes.  They taste so good.  Simply cut them in half and place them into your cereal bowl.  I use a little spoon to pick each half tomato up individually and wow, the flavour will take some beating.  Thankfully, I have a lot of tomato plants which self-seeded, as I wasn’t going to grow many tomato plants this year.  All but one plant is of the cherry variety, so how much weight loss could all those little jewels equate to?!


My Gorgeous Baby Jack

After almost three weeks in England and doing a one-on and one-off night shift routine with my daughter-in-law, I got into an acceptable pattern, so isn’t it strange that, when I got back to Spain, I was hit by exhaustion and passed through three days of general lassitude to pull round?  Having said that, it was an honour to be able to contribute to those nights and to see my ‘three pound born’ grandson reach six pounds and one ounce, before I set off for home.  Here are some photos of Jack, my fifth grandchild.  Mam still has to wake Jack every four hours to feed him but is now allowed (Jack willing!) six hours during the night.  Jack is still on his oxygen supply and still has the sleep apnea machine attached but should be off both of these within the next few weeks.









While I was there, I made a beautiful bread and butter pudding – so easy, so tasty.  I’ll be uploading the recipe and photos soon.