Welcome to the Misadventures of Widowhood blog!

In January of 2012 my soul mate of 42 years passed away after nearly 12 years of living with severe disabilities due to a stroke. I survived the first year after Don’s death doing what most widows do---trying to make sense of my world turned upside down. The pain and heartache of loss, my dark humor, my sweetest memories and, yes, even my pity parties are well documented in this blog.

Now that I’m a "seasoned widow" the focus of my writing has changed. I’m still a widow looking through that lens but I’m also a woman searching for contentment, friends and a voice in my restless world. Some people say I have a quirky sense of humor that shows up from time to time in this blog. Others say I make some keen observations about life and growing older. I say I just write about whatever passes through my days---the good, bad and the ugly. Comments welcome and encouraged. Let's get a dialogue going! Jean

Friday, September 5, 2014

Zumba Classes and my Trip to Computer Hell

I’m typing and words are appearing on the screen so I must still be alive. I wasn’t sure about that when I laid down for a nap after my first Zumba Gold class. Hint: if you ever take one don’t plan to do anything afterward that includes close personal contact because Zumba will make you sweat like a wild boar. I knew I was in trouble when I pulled into the parking lot and saw a woman who I knew, from the boom box she carried, would be the instructor. She was pencil thin and was dressed like Workout Barbie in aqua petal pushers, a matching tank top and shoes and she had a ponytail tied with a girlie-girl bow. This was a class at the senior hall and she was no spring chicken but could that woman dance!

We started with Salsa and Merengue music then switched to some Bollywood with moves that reminded me of the belly dance class I took back in the Dark Ages only done in double time. Then we went on a Latin American tour starting with Jamaican Reggae. And at one point I felt like the Brazilian samba singer, Carmen Miranda, with a bowl of fruit on my head. We also did some cha-cha, ball-and-chain and other steps I learned way back when I was still learning long division and was taking tap and jazz classes at the Arthur Murray Dance Studio. Ohmygod, we even did some hip hop and did we ever get our Beyonce` on with butt pops and pelvic thrusts. I have never been the most graceful cow in the pasture but Zumba made me feel like I have six feet and a learning disability. As exercise classes go it was really fun! It was fast paced with no breaks in between the music tracks---Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Gloria Estefan and others I’m not up on enough to know their names. When I checked my pedometer I’d registered over 5,000 steps in that one hour long class! I was exhausted but I liked it well enough that I want to find some Zumba shoes. That would probably help with that six-footed heifer look I took on during the class. Walking shoes with arch-locks don’t let you pivot, slide and get your Latin rhythm going.

The other news I have is I’m still in computer hell; you know that place where one problem leads to another and another. It all started on the 22nd of last month when my desktop was nearing its first birthday and it got an “update” from Microsoft that wiped out all my photos, documents, settings, contacts, etc. and turned it back to factory fresh complete with tutorials and welcome screens. (I’m using my backup laptop.)  My local computer repair guy said he’d never seen anything like that before and he was able to restore most of it because I have Carbonite back up. But he couldn’t get my incoming email in Outlook fixed, and said I’d have to contact my server. The server said my settings were all correct and I’d have to contact an online support. That online support turned out to be a place that remotely takes control of your computer to fix the issue.

Well, they fixed the email but in the process they disabled my keyboard. I calling them back and spent THREE hours with them online as they tried to uninstall and install new drivers and whatever else they were doing remotely. Finally, they gave up and sent me a check for $80.00 to replace my wave, ergonomic keyboard. I bought the new keyboard and after one try I couldn’t get it going so I took the whole ball of wax back to the local computer shop who couldn’t make it work either. Bottom line: they are wiping my computer clean, reinstalling windows and my Office Suit, then will add back my photos and files. What a mess! Never again will I let someone remotely control my computer. The computer guy said I was the third person in recent days to come in with a similar back story involving a remote control support site and they hadn’t seen that in several years. Another interesting thing he said is that most of viruses that people get on their computers, now, are coming from printing out coupons. I don’t do that but if you do, be careful! Go to the official sites for the stores and not to those coupon collection sites.

Next week I get to be a college girl again when two of my Olli classes start. I’ll also have time to take another Balance/Tai Chi Class and Zumba class and, I hope, I can get my desktop tweaked back to the way it was before it took me to computer hell. ©


  1. oh that class sounds like fun! i'll have to see if there is one near me! i would love that. sorry about the computer though. i have a mac. i'd never go back again. no more problems.

    hugs, bee

    1. I've been using computers and windows for two decades now and I've never had this much trouble! People do love their Macs. Never met a Mac user who didn't sing their praises.

      Zumba really was fun and the hour went fast. I liked that you could get such a good workout in such a short time.

  2. If you want to have a nice long life--I'd suggest you quit the Zumba classes. We are only allowed so many beats before our heart quits, ya know! LOL I had that computer stuff going on back in July. Better to wipe it clean and then re-installed what you want and find all the stuff you want put back on.

    1. I've always had a good, strong heart so I'm not worried. LOL I figure if all those other old people can do it, so can I.

      I have lost a lot of time from eBay selling with this computer issue and I'm feeling that pressure. I don't list without two working computers in the house. I would die from the stress if something like my current computer problems started while I had listings up and I only had the one computer. I'm going to have to scramble to get stuff up to help pay for all this unexpected crap!

  3. Love that graphic.

    I have some great descriptions... "six-footed heifer." I have to steal that one sometime.

    5,000 steps! That is fantastic. I need a pedometer. I know I have one around here somewhere. Maybe it would get me off my butt.

    1. They say you're suppose to shoot for getting 10,000 steps in in a day. I have yet to make that but the "Awkward Widow" talked about her pedometer recently and she's been able to do it.

      On the graphic, I'll never sweat again without looking at it like fat crying. LOL

  4. La la la la la! Happy happy MAC user! Even though we are very safe, I need to find my back up drive and start doing that again! Kidlet just spilled breast milk all over her keyboard .... no more computer for her!

    OMG! 5,000 steps in an HOUR! YIKES! That pedometer is a great toy for me. It really did surprise me that I actually move around that much!

    1. I've been using Dell and windows for 20 (?) years and have had few problems. But this is the mother-lode, isn't it.

      I've been seriously researching Apple Air iPads and will probably get one by the end of the month when the back-to-school kids all clear out of the one and only store in town. Then I'll have back up to my back up. I got an in depth tour of my niece's Apple over the weekend and I'm impressed at the freedom they give you to watch movies anywhere. Then I've got to get back on eBay sales to pay for all this tech junk we can't seem to live without.