Life Returns to Normal Almost December 26th to 30th Yesterday at the festivities, I could hear Ron getting raspy voiced. It was no surprise when he woke with a full blown cold the day after. I did my pampering and fulfilling all requests routine as well as nagged him to drink plenty of liquids like water, not diluted wine and drugged him with Sudafed. We both read most of the time, he taking time out for naps, which I highly advocated, since it kept him quiet while I got mine in. I had a suspicion that the cold was symptomatic of his unrest. Now that he has this new identity of being ‘retired’, he does not know what to do with his time. I can spend hours writing or reading, but he reads, then goes for a walk, then reads some more and we both nap. With my various writing projects, I am feeling productive and satisfied. When someone asks us how long we will be here, his response is that, “We have signed a six month lease, but can get out of it with a month’s notice”, as if they are offering us something better. When he first made this comment, I came back with, “And go where?” I have not received a response yet. He has no one to have camaraderie with. We had thought we were going to have three different friends come to visit and he was soaring with anticipation surrounding those events, making plans to be Mr. Host and Tour Conductor, but when they were postponed he was left with a need to make plans on his own again. I have some interviews coming up for teaching jobs, so if I find one, he will have to find something part-time also, just to get the work visa.Some of my theories surrounding Ron’s psychosomatic illness were laid to rest the next day when I got sick; sicker than he was at his worst. I had a miserable sinus infection. Normally, I take Claritin-D twice a day and I use Becinase nose spray. The nose spray was available over the counter in England and I bought an extra bottle, but the Claritin was not and I started to lower my dosage to make them last longer. It did not seem that I needed it as often with the cold weather and I was not getting the usual symptoms. When I was down to my last fifteen pills, I really put the brakes on them. When I had not had one for five days and this resulted overnight. It gave Ron purpose though, he reversed the roles, and he pampered me. Since I was totally lacking energy and could not go fifteen seconds without a tissue, I napped and read. I read The Red Tent, by Anita Diamant. This was on the New York Times Bestseller list with good reason. It is an incredible story. Death at a Discount by Valerie Wolzien, one of my favorite female mystery writers, and Death At High Tide by Beth Sherman. The last one was fun since is takes place on the Jersey shore about seven miles from my hometown. So, this is why these days are a blend. I have been out of it most of the time. Ron knows I am sick when I am not at the computer at least once in a day. I could not sit upright for more than ten minutes without getting dizzy.Ron has wanted to see a movie for the last couple of days, but I just could not make it out. I suggested he rent a DVD and we could play it on my laptop. I had done this before and know that it is possible. He rented the DVD, I mustered the energy to prepare myself to watch the movie, and the movie would not play. I received some strange message about my computer displaying too many colors and other things that I had no clue what it was talking about. When I took the DVD out and looked at it again, it had DVD – PAL. I knew the videos here are a different format than our VHS and are called PAL format, but I had no idea that the DVDs were also. I was disappointed for Ron and felt that I had let him down by leading him to believe that he had an out for his movie fixes.Through all of these other things, I have been watching faithfully everything on the news about the Euros emergence on midnight of the 1st of January. You would think we were involved the way I glue myself to the television, but it will have impact on our travel, for the good, I hope. It is just so exciting to realize that over 300 million people will be giving up their national identity currency and sharing one currency. The sad events in the news are certainly the destruction of Sydney, Australia with the out of control fires. Having lived in the western States, we can certainly identify with wildfires and the destruction of homes, lives, and animal life. The fire in Lima, Peru that destroyed four blocks of buildings because of a firecracker explosion was devastating personally since we had been there and really loved the area. Adding a more tragic note, though, three hundred people were killed in the basement of a department store that caught fire and were not able to escape. I am thankful that we made our trip to Argentina a couple of years ago. The country is wracked with problems and the people who are fed up with their government are destroying the city of Buenas Aires. They are getting their fourth president in four weeks, tomorrow. Their economy is like ours was during the 1929 rush on the banks. Then there is India and Pakistan, each with nuclear weapons at each other without resolve. All of this makes me grateful for what I have, but makes my soul cry for the losses of others. We can only prayer for better in the New Year, but how many years have we said those same prayers?