Saturday, November 8, 2008

Bunnys and Bichons

I'm still sick with this dumb lung infection, not having a good time. I hate being idle like this but don't feel well enough to do anything. I'm bored. I mean really, you can only watch or listen to so much TV before that pales. Talking makes me cough, and coughing has made my sternum sore, so the phone is out. I have no books to read, none in at the library yet. I still haven't got the computer in the bedroom connected again after re-arranging the room, and I don't feel up to sitting at the living room computer, whine, snivel, bitch. Siiiiggghh.

So I decided, since the laptop hasn't been in working condition for a year, that maybe it was time to format it and start fresh. Why do I wait until I am sick to decide to do this? Yes, that is a rhetorical question.

I searched the living room, 3 times, for my Windows XP upgrade CD. No luck. Well, I AM sick after all. I had it back in the beginning of September using it to format a hard drive I had. I put it away, where I always do and it vanished. No, really, it did. So I searched all the usual and unusual places. No luck. Yesterday I sat down and thought about it and remembered that for some reason I copied all the files from my CD to my hard drive on the desktop in the living room. OHTHANKYOUDEARSWEETBABYJESUS for making me do that! I was able to burn a new Windows XP CD.

Bear in mind I am sick and shouldn't be attempting to do something like this when I am sick, but like I said, I AM BORED. And I like the idea of sitting on the bed and using the laptop to surf the net if I am up to it. I mean really, how many times can you stand to watch reruns of Holmes on Homes or CSI: Miami? Or re-watch the news on CTV Newsnet as it recycles every 20 minutes?

This laptop doesn't have a floppy drive but after I repaired Vicki's computer in August, she gave me an external USB floppy she had. I managed to get the laptop fdisked, then started to format it. 20 minutes into formatting - it's only a 40gig drive - I glance at the screen and see "trying to recover sector 17398". Uh oh. Hmmmmmm. My eyes go slitty and I make a super triple scrunchy face. That's not good! Then I walk out of the room. I'll come back in an hour and see if it formatted...or not. Meanwhile, I use the living room computer to look for the price of a new hard drive for a laptop.

The prices are outrageous! Who are they trying to kid, charging more for a 40gig drive than a 500gig drive! This laptop is old, that is, it was built 6 years ago and doesn't have the up-to-date technology available now in the new laptops. But, it still is worth spending a little money on, because the rest of it still works, despite being dropped on it's head out of the back of a moving vehicle several years ago...but that's another story. Anyway, I don't mind spending $50.00 for a hard drive but not upwards of $100.00.

Back at the laptop, the formatting is finally done and it reports over 2 gigabytes in bad sectors. Oh well. So, I hunt up my Windows ME CD and get started installing and operating system. Because my XP is an upgrade, you must first install a full version of an operating system then install the upgrade from within Windows. Yes, that is a pain in the butt. I have been at this for 2 hours and this is as far as I have gotten. However, I AM a certified computer technician and I do have the patience and knowledge to keep going. Besides, like I said before, I AM BORED.

An hour later, Millennium is installed and working. Next I start on XP. That too takes an hour, so, not counting my time searching for the aforementioned still-missing original XP CD, this has so far taken 4 hours. During this time I have spent on hour in the living room and 3 on my bed, resting, hoping the computer will work when all this is done.

I guess I dozed off, because suddenly I am startled awake by that annoying music Windows XP plays when it loads the Windows Desktop...playing as loud as it can possibly play on the internal speakers of the laptop. Well, I guess it's working then. First order of business, TURN OFF THOSE SPEAKERS SO WE DON'T HAVE TO HEAR THAT MUSIC! Next, download and install AVG Antivirus. Then Windows tells me it has downloaded updates and wants me to install them. Of course, I comply, security is important in computing.

Now it has been 6 hours, I am a bit...ok, a lot tired, but determined to see this through to the end. I eat a bowl of soup - gak, real tired of soup - and get back at it. I download some basic programs, free ones of course. First Picassa so I have a rudimentary photo editing and organizing program. Then Windows Live Mail, Photo Gallery, Writer, and Messenger. If you haven't tried Live Mail yet, you should give it a try. It is much better than that irritating Outlook Express. For a Word Processor, I hunt up Open Office, from Sun Microsystems. It's similar to Microsoft Office, but is free, and that's a bonus. And finally, download and install Flock as my browser so I don't have to use Internet Explorer which irritates me more than I can say.

And 8 hours have gone by. Oh sure, I took breaks while the laptop did it's work, but it has been a really long day, and a job that would have been better to wait to do, is finally done. At least as much as I am doing today. Time to take the dogs outside.

It's dark and wet, but the deluge has stopped for a while as I get ready to let the dogs go into the garden yard. Soon, they are all at the gate impatiently waiting. As I start to open the gate, my eye is drawn to movement in the yard. Uh oh. Cute Little Island Bush Bunny, just a short 15 feet away. But the gate is in motion, as are the dogs, and I can't stop the action. Bunny runs. Dogs dash. Bunny heads for the garden boat. Silly bunny. Leading the pack is Rosie...where did she come from, she is usually the last one out. Run bunny, run! Bunny is not too smart, mustn't be used to being chased, runs around behind the boat, 6 Bichons hot on it's cute little cotton tail. Bunny zigs. Dogs zag. As they round the curve by the boat, bunny goes into the home stretch and dashes through the fence, finally. Bunny wins by a whisker! Now dogs quarter the yard, sniffing wonderful bunny scents and searching out more bunnies. Rosie, Mason & Pippi walk the fence, sticking their noses through the wire to sniff the breeze and watch for more wild animals. Wow, too much excitement for this time of night.

I finally convince them to come back indoors, that the bunny is not coming back. I'm tired, but they are psyched and it takes a while for them to settle down. Time for my medicine and bed. Tomorrow is another day.

Nurse Pippi takes up her position outside the puppy gate to my room, just in case I need help in the night.

Just in case a wild bunny breaks in and attacks.

Well, she says it could happen.

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