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Sunday, 18 September 2022


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Hope you recover soon. I must be the last guy that hasn't got Covid, a benefit of being a virtual hermit/recluce.

I had my well crash in 2004. It completely failed in the submerged pipe and sucked Florida sugar sand into my whole house. It's not one of those things that you can live without, nor something that some backyard mechanic can knock out for you. I had a completely new well and pump plus water softener put in and fingers are crossed.

So many potential fails left to make me lose sleep, septic, roof, air conditioner.

In the immortal words of Rosanne Rosannadana (Gilda Radner), "Its always something!"

Glad you’re feeling better, Mike. Some of the symptoms will hang around for a while. In my case, the cough.

Also I ought to say that in my case I was testing positive for nearly 10 days: if the day symptoms start is day 0, then I tested positive (we had a couple of boxes of lateral flow tests left over from spring) on days 1, 6 & 9, and then negative on days 11 & 12. Although the UK government has said that it’s only necessary to quarantine for 5 days, my experience has been that I was clearly infectious for several days after that. I found a research paper that found the same things - maybe 30% of people were infectious beyond 5 days.

Glad you're on the mend, Mike, and that you're being patient. COVID seems to be a pernicious affliction, and while some bodies cope with it better than others, the road back to previous health levels is apparently a long one.

I don't know much about the housing market, but surely things like the age of well pumps (and, more generally, proper upkeep) matter in the valuation? i.e., that expense is not 100% lost?

Re Leica and collecting: I have only ever made two non-trivial (for me) Leica purchases, both of them "beaters" bought second hand. I sold the old M body ten years later for more than I paid for it (accounting for inflation), and I would likely make a decent profit on the lens as well if I sold it today. Best rental deal ever!

Are there peaches and lemons in photo gear? I think there must be. I suspect I've encountered both kinds of lenses, at least.

When I was a boy, we would have brought buckets of water from QKA Lake up to the house. There's no way that we would have sent Mother down to the lake to do the laundry.

Having COVID myself recently I can completely relate to the tiredness. But, I did end up working on a personal project for 3 interrupted days between my time in bed and it was some of the best "flow" work I've ever done. It highlighted the awful distractions of daily life that was eroading my productivity.

I hope you get well soon!

Cheers, Pak

And... forgive me father, but it's been three weeks since my last shower.

Getting the bathroom renovated. Three weeks in. At least two more weeks to go.

So now my wife and I are experts at "showering" with 11 baby wipes. Yes. Your are dead right Mike. Far too much information.

Pro Tip - don't move the drains around if you can avoid it. It's a BIG deal to hack up a concrete slab and then get it certified termite proof. Who knew? Everybody, apparently. Final bill on the bathroom will be $34,900. And it's a tiny bathroom.

But, what price for a happy wife? Not to mention Italian Terrazzo.

My wife and I both got Covid last month (before the new booster was available). We were both double vaccinated and double boosted, so I assume we got the new variant.

My doc told me that the fatigue can last for two or three months.

...I could kick myself—I probably have the Omicron variant, and I didn't get the latest booster that covered that. I meant to...I just didn't get around to it...

Don't kick yourself too hard, Mike. Your post at TOP announcing that you had COVID-19 was September 8. Bivalent boosters were not widely available until just about then or, at most, a day or two earlier. Given the incubation period, you likely couldn't have prevented infection anyway.

[I guess I have my facts wrong. All I know is that I could have gotten two boosters but have gotten only one. I'll have to talk to my doctor. --Mike]

As a favour to the next occupier of your house I would find a definitive way of locating the water pump and leaving the details somewhere easily found At the back door ?

Mike, I'm 78 years old. I'm very careful of my health. I'm suffering from various cancers. I keep on top of them. When Covid struck I immediately got masks and still wear them when going out to stores or anyplace public. Even today. People may think we are saf(er). But, people are still dying. 400 (+/-) in Oregon in the past month. I don't like being sick. I keep up to date with shots and haven't been sick since the pandemic began. I may get the looks from others but I'm still well and shooting.
Gotta keep on keepin' on,

I'm sorry to hear about your slower than would be hoped for recovery from Covid. Please do take it easy, don't push yourself, don't think about building up your exercise day by day. Just do what you feel able to do. I say this because my wife contracted Covid in March 2020 and has suffered Long Covid ever since. Previously healthy, she hasn't been able to walk for more than half an hour maximum since. If she overdoes it, she suffers from PEM (post-exertional malaise) the next day. We think her condition is attributable to a dormant underlying health condition. It's hugely impacted our lives and sadly the NHS here in the UK has been of virtually no help at all.

Exactly! No blaming yourself for not getting an Omicron booster that was not yet available in time to prevent your illness. (Plus, we don't yet know if the new Omicron booster, if it had been available, would have prevented virus transmission to you, or just reduced the risk of serious illness. Data from human testing of the Omicron booster [actually bivalent vaccine with both original and Omicron variant mRNA] won't be available until about January, 2023.)

Ahh the joys of suddenly burying a house payment in the back yard.
Our well is in good shape but a decade ago we learned our septic system did not meet code and five grand was the price of getting things right.
That will inspire some sailor talk for sure.
Oh well, having a sketchy septic system is like harboring a psychotic uncle in the basement.
Happier if poorer now.

In March of 2020, I got very sick with all the symptoms of COVID.

The county only had a few tests and wanted to save them for someone going through worse, so I never got confirmation that I had or didn't have COVID. I had a cough, chest pains, couldn't think, and couldn't move off the couch without dizziness, etc...

Afterwards, I had a cough for two months and fatigue until late summer. I regularly slept until mid-morning and was tired to exhaustion again by mid-afternoon. I didn't really feel right until after getting my first dose of vaccine, which caused a high fever, brain fog, and fatigue.

During the middle of my extended symptoms, I had a tele-health appointment with my doctor. He said, "Well, if you had it, you survived."

It didn't feel like it.

Came back to this post to thank you for the "stage 1 sleep" tip, Mike! It's something that will help me whether I'm trying to fall asleep or stay awake. It already has, in fact.

Evidence in Oz shows 3rd booster (of any type, not Omicron specific - not yet widely available here) has had significant impact in reducing the severity of Omicron infections but anecdotally is not so great at preventing infection (mandatory reporting is no longer required, so accurate statistics on the infection rate don't seem to be available). At greater than 98% whole of population over age of 16 years double vaccinated and over 71% triple vaccinated, the death rate from Covid has dropped from just under 4% of all cases in mid 2020 (max rate) to under .015% of reported cases (which mostly required hospital care or significant medical intervention - therefore implying a significantly lower percentage of all cases). And 90% of deaths now occurring are with non-vaccinated cases, the balance being those with pre-existing conditions, especially those who are immuno-compromised. My statistics are from Oz Department of Health - health.gov.au. Moreover, there is significant anecdotal evidence that Omicrom infections do not increase future immunity but actually increase the prospects of later re-infection. Conclusion - get the 3rd booster, asap!

"That's when you think you're awake but your thoughts are beginning to wander off in bizarre directions that aren't logical. "

Oh yes, and having a conversation with someone who IS awake, with the brain gamely trying to make sense out of nonsense, driven by vanity to shore up its stature. It's both embarrassing and interesting.
What is going on. Where does this need to be seen to make sense come from?

When I think about it, we spend a lifetime honing our skills at making sense, like it's a life raft.

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