Whatever you might have heard, I have not run off to Ecuador with everybody's donations. (I don't even speak Ecuadorian.) What's happened instead has been sort of a perfect storm of blogular interference.
• As I've mentioned before, my computer has been essentially out of memory for a few months, so it's been difficult to get photos to post to the blog.
• But -- I've gotten a new computer! With Windows 7 (The old computer has XP.) and about eight times more memory! So there have been files to transfer, and programs to install! Which also takes time, even under the best of circumstances.
• But these are not particularly good circumstances. When I tried to upload a new batch of photos from the camera to the new computer, yesterday, it acted like there was something corrupted about the files and refused to upload them.
• My attempts to fix that problem resulted in accidentally installing at least one malware program, but I did upload the photos eventually.
• But after dropping everything to get rid of the malware, I discovered that I couldn't edit the photos I'd supposedly uploaded. I couldn't even locate them.
• This is because (it turns out) the photos weren't saved to the desktop, which is where I'd told the camera to save to, but instead, they were sent to a folder nine folder-layers deep, many of which folders have ridiculously non-intuitive names, and a few of which were even hidden (invisible) folders, so I wouldn't have been able to happen on them even if I'd searched the whole computer systematically. (C --> [my account] --> Users --> AppData --> Roaming --> OLYMPUS --> OLYMPUS Master --> store ["Store?!?" -Mr. S.] --> 20130914145749 --> the pictures.)
• And in the process of trying to unhide the hidden folders, I wound up with a desktop full of previously-hidden TMP files, which I then couldn't figure out what they were, how they'd gotten on my new computer in the first place, how to hide them again, or whether or not I wanted to.
• At which point I figured that, since every time I'd touched the computer yesterday, I'd just made something worse, it might be best to pretend that the day had never happened, and go back to the system restore point from before I'd tried to do all this stuff. Just erase the whole chalkboard and start over. But restore points don't work that way. Which is something I have to re-learn every time I'm tempted to use system restore, because I am not smrt. So, this didn't hide all the TMP files, remove the Olympus program, erase all traces of the malware, or do anything else I'd wanted it to do.
• Which is pretty much when I renounced all worldly possessions and became a Buddhist monk. Which is doubly weird, because I'm not even Buddhist.
• ALSO, I've been trying for a few weeks to get yearbook pictures of some of the plants, which is tiring on its own, and dependent on the cooperation of the weather.
• And there's the usual watering and stuff, which I don't keep up with incredibly well even under ideal circumstances.
• It's been intermittently cold at night, so I've been moving plants in and out a lot, which is exhausting,
• and also means that when I'm trying to water plants, I have to finish watering before it gets cold out, so I'm always doing it in a rush, plus
• it's the time of year when I have to be thinking about bringing them in permanently, soon, and where the hell are they all going to go?
• Also I've found more scale, on various plants, in various rooms as well as outside.
• And some unknown small but prolific caterpillar (one of the geometrid moths?) ate the Episcias in my office into dead lacy parodies of their former selves, so those of you who objected to me calling houseplant pest bingo two or three weeks ago, on the grounds that you can't count caterpillars as houseplant pests if the plant isn't actually in the house when it has the caterpillars -- well, I've done it for real now, then. (How this happened is a question I can't even begin to answer. The Episcias in question haven't been outside all summer, not even for a few minutes to take photos of.)
Rest assured that I have not forgotten that the blog exists, I'm really unlikely to do so, and nobody's in the hospital or anything. I just don't have time, and when I do have time, I'm usually not capable of anything besides staring at a blank wall, whimpering quietly. Sometimes I'm not even together enough to whimper, and whimpering would be a sign of progress.
The good news, if there is good news, is that I'm still taking pictures of plants doing things, so someday, someday, there will be a whole lot of horribly outdated posts about what the plants were doing over the last six weeks or so.
Sunday, September 15, 2013