Monday, April 30, 2018

Heartwarming Day

Sunday, April 29th, was the watershed day as far as Fiorella's grandmotherhood went. Texas son and his wife drove up from Bastrop to show off Baby's latest ambulatory achievement--she not only walks, but dances--but the best thing was that,  after staring at Fio for a long time as if to examine her soul, Baby finally decided Grammy was okay. She even let Fio feed her some baby treats and carry her over to her mother. This day will rest in Fiorella's heart forever.

Sunday, April 29, 2018


Older son accompanied Husband when he visited his dying father's bedside every evening.

Younger son accompanied Husband when he was attending an AA organization every week.

Daughter was at Fio's father's bedside when he died.

Our children have always stood by us, and we will always stand by them.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Ah, Nature!

Yes, that was Forella stumbling into the house after an hour outside in the ever-warming sun hauling rocks and dragging cut cedar branches out of the forest. She also spotted some dead oaks that would make good firewood and dragged some of their better limbs to the side of the driveway. Why all the physical labor, you ask. Well, first, for excercise and that sometimes Fio likes to be alone in silence. Second, because Fio gets a lift from accomplishing something tangible. Third, because she is frustrated with all the ceremony that goes on with getting a new computer up and running. The latest glitch, aside from the missing key code, is that she can't print anything because the computer lacks the needed printer driver--whatever that means.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Friday Morning Round-up

Aah, the glories of sleep, of a full night's uninterrupted sleep--except for the dog demanding to go out at about 2:30 a.m., of course. But this morning, Fiorella feels fit as a fiddle, her brain is clear, and her heart is happy.
Fio is in awe and disbelief of the pack of junkyard dogs that Trump has rounded up to counsel and represent him. Sad.
Slowly, Fiorella is getting adjusted to La Senora Isadora Computadora. Fio even worked a little on one of her manuscripts last night, but there may be problems to come. The Microsoft disc she got in the mail did not include the key code so Dora is only good for two more days.
Why is that people who are otherwise quite nice still support Trump? Is it the football game mentality or have they made some sort of till-death-do-we-part religious vow?
 Fiorella has long held the view that all people are born good, but some of us end up bad because of of bad circumstances. But now, keeping up with the latest news reports, she's beginning to disagree with herself. Maybe there really is a bad seed roaming around out there.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Bounce Back

Things are looking up this morning. Fio slept well, probably because she has drastically adjusted her diet to combat the GERD that can wake her up in the middle of the night and keep her up for hours. Also, she is busily engaged in setting up the aforementioned computer era murder mystery/romance she and a friend are planning to write.
Another thing that is putting a smile on Fio's face and a spring in her step is that today is the day she calls friend Suzy in England and catches up on all the news across the pond. And today is also the day that she'll get the Microsoft sytem installed in her computer. And maybe today will also be the day she gets the family ranch land problem taken care of.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


EEEK! Fio didn't post today. With all thet HASN'T been going on, her brain is addled. To make a long story short, the Microsoft thing didn't show up yesterday and, after checking the mailbox, the tree limbs, the yard, and the front porch several times, Fio went into a dark, dark, place in her soul. She'd messed up ordering glasses on line, and now she'd somehow messed up ordering a system for her computer.

This morning, she woke up feeling down, but did her best to make use of her time by arranging and organizing all of her stray lists and notes, then drove into Austin for a doctor's appointment. Coming home again, she stopped at the mailbox at the head of the drive to pick up the mail, and there, a day late, was her Microsoft package. She was elated for about two hours, then realized she'd have another delay till she could get it transfered into her machine. And now it looks like the house alarm system isn't working right.either.

Why is it always an uphill climb?

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

One Thing After Another

Another snag. Libre Office won't let Fio "save" and some of her Carbonate files are in trouble. Also, as she previously reported to you in song, she can't find "find." So, following the advice of friend Patricia, Fiorella has bought a Microsoft replacement which should arrive today. She's hoping it will get installed today too because she'schampimg at the bit to get back to work on Sabrina's story (formerly Phillipa's story).

Send good vibes her way.

Monday, April 23, 2018


You don't want to be around me
Not when you hear the news
I'm as down as I can get
And you've been there, I bet,
I've got the new computer blues

The blues, the blues--the new computer blues-
You don't want be me in my sad shoes
'Cause I've got the new computer blues

(Music to follow later)


Sunday, April 22, 2018

Hanging Fire

Fiorella has way too many unresolved problemas right now and is banging her head against the wall in anger and frustration. First, there's the ongoing dispute with Chase about the $300+ the bank set her up to take the fall on regarding a home equity loan. Then there's the out-of-state family acreage that Fiorella handles the paperwork for and which she's trying to get freed of an old mineral lease. Then there are the eyeglasses which she ordered on-line about three weeks ago that haven't shown up yet--and when she called Cap I to get the exact date she'd ordered them, its system went down. Then there's the new computer, which has Libre Office on it instead of Microsoft Word, which means Fio is once again delayed in working on her WIP. Then there are the hoses that leaked like sieves when Fiorella tried to wash her car.. And the cyst that has formed on the heel of her foot that she's going to have to have the podiatrist take care of. And that she wrote down the wrong day in su calendario for Son and family's planned visit so she and Husband had the house all dressed up yesterday with nowhere to go.

But, Fio being Fio, she will take up her sword again on Monday and fight the good fight. What else can she do?

Saturday, April 21, 2018


It's not that I am lazy
But inaction drives me crazy
Especially if I'm the one
Who can't get anything done

Friday, April 20, 2018

Sigh of Relief

Fiorella, reporting in. I like my new laptop, even though I haven't figured it all out yet. The keys are are more seperate than in my old one, and they are slightly scallaped on top, which means my fingers are less apt to slide onto the ones next door. Also, the surface is smooth, which means my wrists and outer palms won't get chafed as much. Also, the bottom buttons for procedures like copying and posting are clearly dileneated, which means I don't have to use acrylic paint to mark them off of a long, double and triple duty bar.

There are some downsides. The machine is a little heavier. I don't have a problem carrying it, but because it is a little thicker and I do not have a big hand, I have use two hands to pull the newbie up off the floor. Also, the power cord plugs in at a different place, which sorta throws me, and I now must us a three-step process to open the computer up and close it down. (And I thought computers were supposed to simplify our lives.)

But all in all, things are working out. In fact, I'm feeling so good about having a computer on my lap again that I'm planning to swing into action on the book again this afternoon. Wanna join me?

Thursday, April 19, 2018


At last, at last, I'm in!
Let the fun begin!
My new computer threw a fit
And wouldn't let me enter it
She held me at bay
Most of the day
But now at last I'm in
So let the fun begin!

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Correction--the name of the Rabbi was David Small.

Adios, Mi Dulce Dora

Hold my hand and say soothing things to me because this is the last blog I will write on Dora, mi Computadora. She has an incurable problem with her mother--er, motherboard--so tomorrow she goes in to Click Computer Repair to have her brain scraped out and stuffed into a shiny new laptop, much as will probably happen to all of us in this era of face replacements and cloning.

I've been told that Isadora (my tentative name for my new confidante) will have Windows 10 rather than Dora's Windows 8.1, which sort of scares me. I had a horrible time adjusting from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1, which was forced on me by the ever-dominant Microsoft, and I doubt if the changeover will be any easier this time. Your Fio is a free spirit, and she doesn't like to find herself entangled by ever more complicated and exacting rules algorithms.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Five Comments

I am what I am, but what it is I am always comes as a surprise to me.
If you can't be positive, be funny.
I can read and I can write
Look at me--I'm erudite!
Sometimes I think all that men are good for is breeding and heavy lifting.
I hope that somehow my 5'1/2" grandmother knows that her daughter grew to 5'2", her granddaughter uplifted the clan to 5'4", and her great-granddaughter has topped us all at 5'7".

P.S,: The rabbi's name was David SMALL. (I had him mixed up with Father Brown.)

Monday, April 16, 2018

Poor Excuse

Fiorella forgot to write for today. To be more exact, she thought what she'd written yesterday was for today. To be even more exact, Fio is an electronic mess. Well, to be absolutely honest, everything she has tried to do today has bounced back at her and she's ready to SCREAM. The tipping point was when she backed her baby car out of the garage to wash it and the garden hoses leaked--both of them. Then Husband, rushing in to the rescue, lost his footing on the wet flagstones and went down spurting blood. Fio no sooner had him up and swathed in paper towels and bandages than the guys who were scheduled to pick up his riding mower showed up, which mean that Fio had to drive her car back into the garage and postpone Baby Car's bath until she had a working hose and a clear driveway.

When someone makes a movie out of Fiorella's life, it will be a slapstick comedy

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Facing Reality

Fiorella didn't realize how much time she was spending with su computadora until now, when she has to  make special arrangements to engage with her. The loss of her constant companion has left a big hole in Fio's life, but, on the other hand, she's grudgingly turned her attention to things that have needed doing for a while--like going through her piles of notes that seemed vitally important to her when she wrote them. Then, of course, less grudgingly, she has more time to tend to the rocks and the cedars. And--surprise, surprise--she's been reading her first two books, wincing occasionally at what could have been better said, but, overall, quite pleased with herself.

But Fio still wants her laptop back. The simulacrum should be ready this coming week.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Dawns the Light, and It Is Dark

Probably what Fiorella dislikes most about Trump's administration is her loss of innocence. She never before realized there were such vile, hateful, mean, deceitful, corrupt people in the world.

Friday, April 13, 2018

SHOTS, by William T. Buida

The shots rang out
And people ran to hide
The shots rang out
And people ducked and prayed
The shots rang out
And people fell and died

The news reported
On the terrible event
A man with guns
Killed sixty people in the crowd
More on the evening news at six
About this tragic event

And the people cried
Our prayers are with you in this hour
And the people cried
What can prevent such tragedy
What can we do
What is within our power

A voice was heard to ask
Why are guns so easy to get
A voice was heard to ask
Why so many automatic weapons
And other voices responded with
We should not discuss this yet

The NRA said
All guns are our right
So we can shoot
The thief at our front door
So we cabn shoot
Someone in a fight

And Congress met
With endless speeches and debates
Afraid to act
Afraid to offend the NRA
And so decided to leave
People's lives up to the fates

The tragic event passed
And nothing was done
The people in power
Did not change a law or rule
Did not take any action
Did not initiate any action
Did not limit any type of gun

And so life continued until

The shots rang out
And people ran to hide
The shots rang out
And people ducked and prayed
The shots rang out
And people fell and died
And the cycle began again

Thursday, April 12, 2018


What have you been doing today, Fio? 

Thank you for asking. I've been reading through my first book, and, to my surprise, IT'S GOOD. Not perfect--if I ever get the rights to it, I'll go through the story one more time and smooth out a few bumps I've noticed, but GOOD. The plot builds, the sensuousness holds, and I'm getting across what I want to say. WHOOPIE!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

An Inside View

Please excuse Fio while she hides in a corner, covers her face with her hands, and whimpers like a whipped puppy. This is one of those horrible times when Fio's memory digs up every dumb, stupid, embarrassing thing she has ever done in her life from childhood on and parades it through her brain, scene after scene.

With that sort of monkey on her back, you understand why Fio keeps calling for forward movement.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018


Fiorella is sad. Dora, her sweet computadora, is dying. Fio's planning to go shopping for Dora's twin tomorrow, but in the meantime, she has her long-time companion resting on the hard-surface of the mostrador de madera she seems to favor. Blessings.

Monday, April 9, 2018


Just a quickie to tell you that Fiorella has discovered que es la problema de la Dora, la Computadora--envious ambition. Fio noticed that Dora will misbehave herself only when she is jostled or on an uneven surface, but remain cool, calm, and collected when she is rested on a desk or un mostrador (a counter) which obviously means that Dora is tired of being carried from pillar to post as a laptop and wants to settle down to a more respectable life as a desktop.

We'll see what her psychologist at Click Computer Repair says.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Blast Furnace!

This has been an up and down week for Fiorella, and right now, she's raging. Her computadora is playing games again, pinging off, then correcting itself, then ping, ping, pinging again. Of course, that would have to happen just when Fiorella is trying to devote several hours a day to her book. And, of course, it would have to happen on a weekend. Come Monday, Dora will make another little trip to Dr. Click.

And also come Monday, Fiorella will be calling stupid Chase Bank again, which sent her a very dumb form letter because apparently it is so stupid that it is out of touch with anyone else in the banking industry. Fio does not have time for this nonsense. She has a book to finish off before she forgets what it's all about.

And sometime this coming week, Fio hopes her mail-order eyeglasses, which she has gone through it the seven gates of hell about, will arrive. Bless Son and his wife for guiding her through the process long distance. For the past four months, Fio has been driving with glasses that are no better than none at all. NEVER BUY GLASSES FROM EYEMART EXPRESS!

Of course, Fiorella is seething about the national news too. When will Trump be thrown out on his tail? When will all his cronies and hangers-on be thrown out? WHEN CAN WE HAVE A DECENT GOVERNMENT AGAIN?

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Past Tense

Fiorella rode her first bicycle standing up for two years because it was too big for her. Needless to say, the bike was second-hand--not many bicycles were being turned out in the post-war years, and she was lucky to have one at all. No gears, of course, which meant Fio developed leg muscles to die for.
Fio learned to ice skate before she learned to roller skate. Every week in winter, the family--Mom, Dad, Baby Brother, and Fiorella--would pack up and and visit the local rink. Mom and Dad had their own skates, but Fio was sraapped into rented skates. No idea what was done with Brother. Of course, when the family moved to Texas, the skates were put in storage and eventually donated to the Salvation Army.
Moving to Texas meant dropping out of Brownies and joining Bluebirds, the only show in town. It also meant having bat-and-ball recesses on the barren grounds of Fio's new elementary school instead of  the equipped playground she'd been used to, and she had no idea how to catch or bat a ball. Needless to say, Fio was the last person chosen for teams.
Moving to Texas also meant having to learn what seemed like a different language. Regional accents were much more pronounced back then, before universal television taught us how to sound like everyone else.
Fio's parents were almost totally cut off from their roots. Mother and her two sisters-in-law would write back and forth once a month to stay in touch, and that every Christmas and Easter, Dad would pay Ma Bell big buck$ for the family to connect with relatives in Ohio and Pennsylvania. Then there was the two-week automobile trip  to visit almost every summer. Did Fio ever tell you that she used to get car sick?

Friday, April 6, 2018

Counting Blessings

Fiorella is triply blessed. Daughter is researching information for her about the car Fio has decided her latest hero drives, Austin son has been keeping Fio up-to-date on Grandbaby's walking and talking, and Minnesota son helps Fio over the phone with on-line stuff like cell phones and ordering eyeglasses. Come to think about it, Fiorella is surrounded with blessings--her neighbors who bring her rocks for her driveway, the nice man who mows her lawn and cuts down her dead trees, and the woman who cleans her house and teaches her Spanish. Then there are the people at Click Computer, Mazda, the local Chase Bank, and Capitol One. And don't forget Fio's longtime friends, most of whom are writers, and the new friends she's made on Facebook and through this blog.

God is good.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Work in Progress

Hip, hip, hooray!  Fio's on her way! She's carved out big blocks of time the last three days to go through her book as it is and see if it sticks together, and IT DOES! The story MOVES! What a relief! What an IMPETUS to move forward!


The aisles clogged with people returning to their seats as the lights signaled that the second act of the play was about to begin.

Determined to concentrate on the show rather than her escort this time around, Sabrina sat up straight and focused on the stage as the curtain opened on a desolate scene. The Major-General was weeping with remorse because he had lied to the pirates when he’d claimed to be an orphan, and his daughters were doing their best to console him by singing a lugubrious song about “drying the glis’ning tear.”

 Bram took her hand in a loose grip and began slowly, ever so slowly, moving his finger down the sensitive inside of her thumb, then up her first finger and journeying back down her thumb again.

Over and over.

Her lips went dry and her heart beat faster.

Frederic had entered the scene and everyone was singing their hearts out, but she couldn’t care less because her entire world was centered on Bram’s touch. The stage blurred into unreality. Her eyelids drooped as Bram’s finger moved up the side of her middle finger, traveled down the other side, then climbed up and down her ring finger and little finger slowly, slowly.

She shifted her legs against each other to relieve the gathering warmth and gave a furtive glance to either side. Could anyone see what was going on?

Did she care?

Turning her hand over, he began drawing a lazy figure-eight on her sensitized palm. Colors exploded beneath her eyelids. 

Don’t stop, don’t stop, don’t stop, don’t stop.

He didn’t.

Instead, he began exploring the back of her hand, then underside of her wrist and forearm, again moving back and forth slowly and gently, barely touching the skin. Sabrina closed her eyes to intensify the waves of heat flooding through her.

Oh Lord, the piano was far-away, an echo in the distance, and she was breathing in and out deep and slow, her eyes glazed, her body dissolving into a puddle of bliss.

Suddenly everyone around her was standing up and clapping.

She opened her eyes. The cast had assembled for its final curtain call.

Stumbling to her feet, she joined in the applause.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Written Against the Odds

Except for the Jesus portrait Fiorella did for her brother when he was a child, Fiorella does not do religious paintings. She considers them, even the famous masterpieces, to be fantasies that all too often people take for real and embed with supernatural powers, like the Russian icons, like "holy" water, like religious medals. For Fio, God is all around us, in every breath we take, and the veneration of material items is a mistaken form of worship. (No, Fio would never have bitten off the toe of a dead "saint" and take it back to Rome with her.)
Now that the weather has turned, Fiorella is turning her attention to her rocks again. She emptied the trunk of the car of the bigger rocks she'd filled it with a couple of months ago and filled her little red wagon full of smaller rocks she'll back the bigger ones up with, if any of that makes any sense. If it doesn't make sense, blames it on the scorpion sting and the mosquito bite Fio got while clearing out her rock pile.
WARNING: Dora, la computadora, has been acting up lately and Fio doesn't know what's going on. In case Dora doesn't heal herself, Fiorella might be out of touch for a day or two.

Monday, April 2, 2018


Fio doesn't remember if she's posted this short-short before, but whatever, enjoy!

Heaven was, well, heavenly.  Each day was just as wonderful as the day before.  The sunrise was always a blushing gold, the sunset a drama of orange and black.  The grass was always green and smelled of eternal spring.  George golfed with his spirit guide every day and always won.  His wife never whined and his children were always polite, obedient, and happy. 
            In fact, after a while perfection got somewhat boring.
            “I really didn’t realize heaven would be so much the same all the time,” George finally said to his spirit guide.     
            The being looked at him in surprise. “What made you think this is heaven?”

Sunday, April 1, 2018

April 1st

Dora, mi computadora, has been acting up all day, but Fiorella is determined to post her greeting even if she has to stay up all night to do so: