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March, 2000: 1 24


(1999-2002: Pre-Retirement Years)

3/1/00-Wed.-In the last few weeks, we've become more focused on what is wanted/needed, if health and our investments hold up, for beginning retirement. Among other things, this will probably involve leaving Austin for a better area, perhaps the Pacific Northwest, within a few months to a year or so after I resign my state job (now anticipated in 3/2002).

This evening, Pepper and I went for a walk. We saw five deer in the Barnes & Noble shopping center area.

With the DJIA up only $9 out of about $10,100 (.09%), my Quality Value Thirty Portfolio was up over $2000 (2%) today.

Fran is late returning tonight, involved in the dress rehearsal of Austin Lyric Opera's "Aida" performance.

3/24/00-Fri.-It seems I have been more ill than healthy much of the time since October, 1999. Today is no exception. Yesterday and last night, both Frances and I were victims of food poisoning, with effects that were not pretty! I threw-up twice and had a variety of other obnoxious symptoms. I still am feeling exhausted, sore, and very weak. Fran's not doing much better.

However, I actually have good wellness news! About ten to twenty days ago, I finally got over the worst of the series of asthma exacerbations that started in December. Somewhere in there too I recovered most of the use of my left shoulder, which had been problematic since 10/99. (It is still mildly painful at times.)

A new difficulty had also developed. About a month ago I began having significant laryngitis. The hoarseness, soreness, and extra phlegm associated with it in my lower throat just would not go away. I was afraid I might have a cancer lesion on the larynx or a vocal cord. But in the last ten days or so I've had a couple medical appointments, the last one just this past Monday, during which the doctor put a fiber-optic instrument through my nose (not nearly as bad as I had feared) and into the pharynx region and carefully checked things out there. He said I definitely do not have any lesions or cysts. Rather, the problem was an inflamed pharynx, probably due to irritation from the more aggressive of the asthma medications I'd been prescribed, which, not coincidentally, I began using about a month ago. After I stopped treatment with that inhaler, the problem began to clear up.

Ironically, just before the food poisoning, I was telling Ernie, at a get-together for Chinese food (the likely culprit) with he, Ron, and Fran this past week, that I was feeling the best I had in months!

All the sickness has taken its toll, though, on my productivity at work. I am rather far behind once again. To top it off, next week I must report for jury duty!

And Frances and I were disappointed and depressed today to discover a new termite infestation in our house. Bother!

This evening I am once again listening to my favorite late Friday evening radio program, "Film Score Focus."

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