Sunday, May 1, 2016

Frontal Passages and Late Bloomers

Yesterday was cloudy and windy, positively dreary.  Last night the last of the major clouds passed through and we saw this.  In the middle of the photo is the trailing edge of the front, leaving us clear skies.  It also brought us a much cooler air mass, for which we are very grateful.


This is one of the late bloomers in the park.  We never knew it bloomed until last year when we returned to regroup after Kanab.  It's really gorgeous.  The blooms last one day, so you must be there when they open.


This is a large prickly pear.  He blooms a lot.  This has been a good year for the cactus.


The residents of the plague ship continue to improve.  Neither of us are 100%, but we're functional.  Today we walked a mile and a half, did laundry and after lunch we'll be going to Target.  So far I have not caught Jim's cold, so I am happy about that. 
At present we're debating the route to Oregon.  We like 395, but the more direct path is through the waste land that is Nevada.  Soon we must quit waffling and pick something.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Fluoroquinolones

One of the things that has recently complicated my life has been a prescription for Levofloxacin.  Levofloxacin is a member of the Fluoroquinolones family of drugs.  They're excellent at killing bacteria, but they carry very serious and dangerous side effects.  Two of the worst side effects are damage to the aorta and Achilles tendon rupture.  There has been a black box warning for the Achilles since 2008.  There's a long list of other bad things, but those are the two most significant.  The risk of damage increases with the age of the patient.  If you are over 60, your risk is increased.
Doctors like to prescribe these drugs because they work quickly on the bacteria (such as pneumonia) and then the patient feels better.  However, they're over prescribed.  My doctor did not say one word to me about the risks of this drug.  I was already aware from reading doctor blogs and discussing it with a couple of other docs I see, so I decided to take the risk because I was so sick.  It was a bad decision.  Four days after starting a low dose of Levofloxacin, the backs of my legs were giving me agony if I stood still for more than 60 seconds.  Walking is OK, standing is not.  I took 6 of the 7 pills and quit early, deciding I'd rather risk a super bug than hurt my legs anymore.  There is a lot of literature about these drugs on the internet, on reputable sites.

Here is one source, and there is another below, linked in the title.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Jim Has a Cold and Stupid Technology

Here is a lovely blooming cactus for your consideration.  This was taken yesterday morning, before the troubles. 


The sunset was kind of interesting.  There wasn't really any color, but it was quite striking.  We're having a lot of clouds marching through with the high winds. 


As the day progressed yesterday, it became evident that Jim has caught a cold.  He hasn't been sick since 2013, so I guess he's due.  For some reason, we can never remember to buy a thermometer, I have no idea why that is.  So today, I took myself to Target for Tylenol and Nyquil and to get a stinking thermometer.  Did you know that some of them cost $60?  For a thermometer!  Anyway, I got this one.  What I did not realize is that it only works with a smart phone.  One must download an app to use this device.  The app is free, but it wants access to your contact list, all of your files, and your location.  This just irritates the living snot out of me.  Why does an app feel like it should be able to rummage around through all of your personal data?  So, this is going back.  Later I may nip down to Walgreens and see if they have something that doesn't require an app.  This is just stupid technology.


I'm continuing to improve.  I still have a cough that makes people stare at me in the grocery store, but it is better.  The doctor says that it'll be 4 to 6 weeks before this is completely over.  One of the things I am doing this summer is getting a pneumonia vaccine shot.  I do not ever want to have this again.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Jim's on the Bike and a Few Cactus

Greetings Earthlings!  How are things with you?  We're gradually improving.  I have to tell you that this is the sickest I have ever been in my entire life.  This morning I walked about a mile and it was enough.  Jim rode his bike for the first time since the incident.  It was a short ride, since we're having gale force winds here, but he was on the bike.  Unlike when he's walking, the repaired tendon feels fine when he's on the bike. That's a very good thing.


Due to being so dang sick, I missed the cactus upon our return.  It's unfortunate, this year's bloom was just spectacular.  Here are a few that I saw recently.


There are several saguaro cactus blooming in the park. 


Yuccas blooming in the park.  They're pretty magnificent.


It's amazingly hot and windy here.  A couple of days ago, someone left their awning out and a gust of wind tore in right off the RV.  I think we are here for at least two more weeks.  Jim's PT wants to see him again.  I will probably need to have my lung function checked one more time.  Then, maybe we can go to where it is less hot.