Saturday, August 20, 2016

Saying Goodbye

by Fred Owens
Saying Goodbye
A lot of things have happened and mostly good since I got this old flip phone four years ago.  I have Verizon service  -- always Verizon for me. No contract, $30 a month. I use it to make phone calls.
Sometimes I text. I often used the camera, but my pocket gets too dirty from garden work and the camera lens on the cell phone got scratched, so no more photos.
It's time to let the old flip phone go and move on. I went out to the Cosco store with my girl friend and shopped for an Apple iPhone SE. The salesman was a young fellow who talked a lot.
A lot of salesmen think they have to keep talking to make the sale. But they are wrong, they actually have to shut up long enough to hear the customer say yes .... but I digress.

What inspires me to finely make the switch to the smart phone is a new app called WeChat which is popular in China with over 700 million daily users. WeChat does messaging, video conferencing, bill paying, retail purchases and you can schedule dumpling deliveries too (dumplings being delivered in China).
A lot of Chinese people have never owned a laptop of conventional PC, they all just skipped right ahead into mobile phone usage and that is what they are used to.

I will get the smart phone, download WeChat and begin commerce and friendship with Chinese people. I already have one Chinese friend  -- she has agreed to show me the ropes.
The history of China is very interesting -- the great wall and all those old clay pots, stuff like that -- but I realize that the future of China is what really amazes me. I want to stay in touch with that energy. Our country has a strong and intensely competitive relationship with China. That is a good thing.
But I still have a few more weeks with my old flip phone -- boy, we got through it all together.
The emperor plants rice and Donald Trump unloads a truck. I am not being ironic. I was actually touched by videos of Donald Trump helping to unload a truck in Louisiana, to bring supplies to flood victims.
Good on you, Donald. If we all pitch in, we can get it done.
Trump's gesture reminded me of the annual custom in Japan. Every spring time the emperor of Japan plants rice seedlings in his family plot in the imperial garden. Many Japanese farmers believe that the emperor's participation is spiritually necessary for a good rice crop. And maybe they just like to see the old man doing a little work just like everybody else.
Likewise Trump is doing his bit to unload the truck. He was sneered at for only working less than one minute, but hey, he showed up, didn't he?
Did you help to unload the truck?  Did you help to plant the rice? We all have to pitch in.
Election forecast. Donald Trump is getting friendly advice and stern warnings from elder media statesman Roger Ailes. Ailes said shut up and make nice, and Donald is doing that. I think it has to do with age. Trump is 70 and feels seniority to younger people, but Ailes is 76, and Trump listens to this older man.
Be quiet, express regrets, do acts of kindness, go unload the truck -- right there Trump gets headlines and a bump in the poles.
Trump is way behind, but he is going to pull even by the time of the first debate scheduled for Sept. 26  -- that is my forecast.
No pity for Trump. No pity for Hillary Clinton.
I'm voting for Hillary and I expect she will win.

Fire and flood. Flood in Louisiana and fires in California. We have a 10,000 acre fire burning near Santa Barbara this Saturday morning. It was 3,000 acres yesterday, but it exploded over night and seems to be racing to the east -- away from habitation.
If you go to the park near our house and walk up to the top of the hill, you can get a view of the fire -- a towering, awesome column of smoke rising over the foot hills. Too far away to make anybody nervous. It's bad luck to be nervous, better to just go about your business.
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Fred Owens
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Fred Owens
cell: 360-739-0214

My gardening blog is  Fred Owens
My writing blog is Frog Hospital

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