I keep looking for good reasons for carrying around a rectangular gizmo that feels like a manhole cover, while pecking with the edges of my fingers.
The other day I found a reason. I was walking in my town near the train station and spotted a woman my age in some modest distress. It was a warm day, and she had just gotten off the train and could not find her dentist's office.
Maple Street? I have lived here over 40 years, and I walk and drive and ride my bike all over town, but sometimes the names of back streets elude me.
Get out of the sun, I suggested. I can find it.
I hauled the thing out of my fanny pack, and lunged at the microscopic keys with my thick fingers. Many mistakes later, I discovered that Maple Street was one block long, one block away. I drive on it all the time.
The lady was fine, just lost. She thanked me and began walking at a brisk pace to keep her appointment. I had just amortized some chunk of the price and the frustration of learning all the codes and tricks and mysteries of this fad.
Next time I can truly justify my obsession, I will pass it on.
(Written on an old-fashioned traditional laptop, just like my grandmother and grandfather used.)
"The day after my 80th birthday, which overflowed with good wishes, surprises and Covid-safe celebrations, I awoke feeling fulfilled and thinking that whatever happens going forward, I’m OK with it. My life has been rewarding, my bucket list is empty, my family is thriving, and if everything ends tomorrow, so be it.
"Not that I expect to do anything to hasten my demise. I will continue to exercise regularly, eat healthfully and strive to minimize stress. But I’m also now taking stock of the many common hallmarks of aging and deciding what I need to reconsider."
--Jane E. Brody, my pal in the NYT newsroom, oh, a few years back, in the Personal Health column, Sept. 13, 2021.
"People have said to me, ‘You’re fully vaccinated. Why are you being so careful?’” said Dr. Robert M. Wachter, professor and chair of the department of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. “I’m still in the camp of I don’t want to get Covid. I don’t want to get a breakthrough infection.”
---Tara Parker-Pope, The New York Times, Aug. 16, 2021.