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Another day in the life of....

April 9th, 2010 at 07:44 am

So yesterday was my final trip (for the time being) up to Yale for assorted medical research studies.

I was supposed to hit two of them. Since they were drawing blood at the first one, I had to be there at 8 am. We had to walk over to Yale-New Haven Hospital for the blood draw, but it was a gorgeous day. As per usual, the nurse had a little trouble drawing blood, so she ended up piercing me in the lower arm and it was still flowing very slowly (dehydrated) so she was "milking" my hand all the while. Afterwards, they fed me a full breakfast of pancakes, bacon, cereal, juice and coffee, something they don't do for everyone, but i guess she felt bad for me becus of the trouble with the blood draw. Cool!

I should get a check for $217 in the mail in a few weeks.

So on to my 2nd study. I had specifically asked the young woman where to park, and she mentioned the parking lot directly in front of the building as well as parking garages. Metered street parking I figured wouldn't work well since the study was probably going to be more than 2 hours and i don't think the meters go for more than that. (Honestly, I'm not really sure now, but you'd think the people doing these studies would be able to give accurate, specific info on parking in the city since it can be an issue. It's all students running these studies and since most of them don't need a car to get around, they don't seem to really know themselves.)

I had a little trouble finding the location, and with the one-way streets, had to circle around the city block 3 times before i found it. (This was the first MapQuest screw-up i had.) I found the very small parking lot in front of the building, but contrary to what she'd told me, the sign said permit parking only, all others will be towed. Then i found an adjacent parking lot for the same building, but this one had a gate down. I pulled in to push the button for a parking ticket and the sign said Out of Order. The gate was still down, so i had no choice but to back out onto the very busy road. Not good. I was so stressed after that, and generally stressed after the issues with my blood draw from the first study, that I decided to say the heck with it and just headed home, feeling drained. I called to tell her i wouldn't be there. I was giving up another $40, but oh well, there will be other studies.

Last night a friend and i went to an excellent physician lecture on Woman & Heart Disease. It was a really good talk and the doctor was quite approachable. We chatted a bit as he sat at my table. The yummy free dinner provided by Masonicares included grilled chicken, sauteed zucchini and yellow squash and a cold tortellini salad, plus fruit punch and cookies for dessert.

The last few days were so nice, weather-wise, that I was able to do a lot of yard work. I discovered there are maybe a half dozen "volunteer" cherry tree seedlings growing in a brushy, overgrown area on the north side of my house, nearby the 3 dwarf cherry trees I purchased and planted a number of years ago. I don't bother trying to eat the cherries, they're mostly pit, but the birds, especially the cat birds, relish them, and they planted new seedlings for me.

I would never have noticed them growing in this overgrown area except that they're now in bloom. The biggest seedling is about 6 feet high, but was becoming engulfed in wild grapevine and bittersweet, so I spent a lot of time de-tangling those vines from it, and then pulling out the vines themselves so they wouldn't simply grow back. There's still more to do.

There's also a large barberry, so in preparation for digging that thing out, I clipped back all the branches.

I then had enough plastic fencing and wood stakes to fence in two of the seedlings. I was surprised the deer hadn't already discovered them there, but now that I've cleared much of the overgrown stuff out, they stand out like beacons, i imagine, to hungry deer. I'm happy that at least 3 of the seedlings happened to have sprouted up in locations where I can just leave them to grow, not too close to other plants or in a bad spot, plus they'll all enjoy plenty of springtime water since a drainage outlet pipe is in the vicinity. They'll also help shield the view of my neighbor's house over time.

Got an assignment from a freelance client for the April corporate blog post, so i should try to do that this weekend.

I rolled out my remaining 6-foot-high fencing to see how much I could expand my veggie garden by, and it looks like I have enough to add another 30 square feet. I will, however, have to dig up a big burning bush that's in the wrong place, and I'll need to buy 4 more 7 foot high metal stakes to secure the fencing in the expanded section. This needs to be my next outdoor project becus planting time approaches.

On Sunday, we're going to an annual cactus and succulent show. The first 50 people there get a free plant, so we'll try to be early! I really like cacti and "succulents," ie jade plants and other fleshy-leaves arid-climate loving plants, and admission is free.

On Tuesday i have a borough meeting and hope the contingency i support will succeed in convincing borough leaders they don't need $250,000 of our borough tax dollars in reserve and to cut in half the coming year's tax bill. (This is in addition to town property taxes.) In other words, they have a whole lot of our tax dollars just sitting in a bank account "in case they need it." Don't tax me for no reason!! Grr.

On Wednesday i have another physician lecture and free dinner at an Ethan Allen Inn. I'm really enjoying these.

3 Responses to “Another day in the life of....”

  1. frugaltexan75 Says:

    Nice - getting so much free food and entertainment. Smile
    Sorry about the parking frustration.

  2. elisabeth Says:

    City parking can be a real bear!

  3. Jerry Says:

    I'm glad that you heard a speaker about women and heart disease. We just had a lecture on that topic and it is interesting how the clinical picture can lead to be so different between women and men for the same types of pathologies! I wouldn't stress about the missed test -- if they can't offer some insurance of decent directions, then I think they are lucky to have received a call from you to cancel.
    Jerry

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