Thursday, January 21, 2010

pieces in motion

Hello everyone. Last week was fairly busy. The leace has been signed. You have to sign those things in many places. Something like five or six times. Until now, I had always thought that when people spoke of "initialling" a document, they put their first initial and then their whole last name. I didn't realise that you just had to put your first and last initial. You learn something new every day. The appointment with Peel Housing went well also. I'll have to report my income and have an inspection each year. Everything makes good sense given that the tax-payer's money is being spent on my behalf. The only thing I have any real objection to is having to call and let a rent worker know if anybody sleeps overnight at my apartment. That feels very intrusive as it seems to presume guilt. Apparently, this rule is in place because other people have abused their leaces in the past by having people live with them for extended time without reporting it. Some people have even rented out their subsidised apartments. The folks at the agency don't care why someone stays over but just want to make certain that I am the only one actually "living" at the apartment. I'm certainly allowed to have guests stay over as long as I let my worker know. The limit is two weeks at a time. Frankly, unless I were on the cusp of getting married again, I don't think anybody will be staying with me that long.

Mom drove both me and one of her friends who is actually correctly called "visually impaired" down to Vision Aids Canada. They certainly have a lot of stuff there and are willing to go out of their way to be helpful. Doubtless, over the years, I'll use them for other special items relating to blindness. I've obtained a talking microwave and talking meat thermometer. That ought to make cooking a good deal easier and safer over the long term. I just need to get a copy of the manual for my grill with all the correct temperatures for various food..

This week, the focus has been more about ODSP and making certain that this agency which provides my income has the information it needs. I just got a call from my case worker and that has now been taken care of. It's nice to have that all settled. I've applied for and got some extra funding to help cover the expenses of furnishing the apartment. I also found out what my new income level will be. Not as steep a drop as I thought might be the case. The moving process shouldn't completely bottom me out but it'll certainly lower my bank balance closer to the minimum than it has been for years. Given my projected fixed costs, I need to stay above $500 in order to be certain that the basics for a month are paid for without a problem. My rent and Rogers bill will both be paid automatically. That'll take a bit of getting used to. I always paid those bills via telephone banking during my marriage. However, provided there's no malfunction that slurps my acount dry, it ought to work out nicely. Keeping enough of a safety margin shouldn't be too problematic. In general, I've always tried to stay above $1000 in order to avoid banking fees and also to be ready for computer failure or some other disaster. If I'm right about how things work out, I'll carry a credit card balance for a month at the most and then have everything fairly nicely back in hand. I'm getting the first three months of TV and internet free which certainly helps marvelously. It shouldn't be too rough at all as long as nothing breaks down. That possibility is quite unlikely at present. Everything seems to be working quite well.

Once I'm all settled in, I'll try to get back to steady work on Enchantment's Twilight among other things. I still have yet to delve too deeply into the rpg books I purchased in hopes of finding fresh inspiration. There'll be plenty of podcasts, TV shows, the odd visit from friends hopefully both old and new, plus family visits and activities. etc. I ought to be able to largely stave off boredom and keep my spirits up. I'll feel at least a little more like I'm living what passes for a normal life for someone my age. Any way you slice it, things will be on a much better footing than they have been for quite some time.

It won't happen all at once. Learning to get to places within walking distance may well be a project spanning more than one year's effort particularly if I do the safe thing and avoid learning new routes during the winters. That's what I'll be focussing on first. I'd like to be able to get to and from as many places within reasonable walking distance as I can. At least then, I can competently be out among other people on my own terms. A lonely life spent mostly behind a keyboard isn't what I want and would waste a good part of my potential to help people. However, it's likely the sort of life I'm in for over the short term.

It seems to take an inordinant amount of time as an adult to make the kinds of friends who you hang out with regularly and would trust enough to travel places with. Life seems to fragment us from each other as we get older. Rather than banding together as hard reality sets in, people seem to close themselves off. Online chats become the norm rather than actually getting together for a meal or coffee. If you don't circumstancially find yourself in someone else's work or other orbit of life, there's simply no room for us outsiders. Back a while ago, a question came up on PlentyofFish asking whether anybody thought they might have been more suited to an earlier time in history. I remember thinking that perhaps I would have had less of a sense of isolation had I been born a decade or two earlier. The fabric of society was somewhat more together than it seems now. That may well simply be history's illusion working its magic. I've often thought that people who pined for more simpler times were deluding themselves. For instance, is there really more disrespect, sexual crime, violent crime, etc these days? Or, as seems equally as likely to me, have we always been living with roughly the same amount of that with less of it being widely known about in the past? Here's another question: Had I been born a decade later than I was, would the friendships I have online with people who I'll in all likelyhood never physically meet still seem as shallow and etherial as they do to me? When you hear some of the concerns from educators and parents, you imagine that younger people today find digital life even more meaningful and real to them than life in the actual world. I don't buy that completely. Like so many extreme positions, the truth likely falls somewhat short of that. Kids and teens still get together as well as text each other to death. I strongly suspect that kids and teens have a better sense of which way is up, what's real and what's not, than most of the older people who are left fretting about them in their digital dust. It's simply a different era now.

Yesterday, I helped dad set up a Gmail acount. He then helped mom get a second one going for her since it proved impossible to remember or otherwise obtain the password for one Dan helped her set up earlier. They both seem to like Gmail better than their Rogers acounts. Mom has now finished two of the games I got her for Christmas. She defeated Return to Ravenhearst some time ago and has now also vanquished Murder She Wrote. Currently, she's starting Mystery Case Files: Dire Grove. I got her the collectors edition with all the hints and other bells and whistles built right into the game. That one ought to be a nice challenge for her. She's really enjoying having her own computer. Dad is beginning to ponder what sort of desktop computer he wants. He'll want my help choosing one and getting it going some time after I've moved into my apartment. That shouldn't be a problem at all. He'll be going on a golfing trip over the weekend. So far, church on Sunday is the only planned thing in my weekend. The soup lunches they have at Meadowvale CRC are always fun to attend and quite delicious. There's also a possibility of dinner with Mark and Wendy but that hasn't been firmed up just yet.

The Internet has been devoid of much new and interesting over this past week. The CSUN conference is going to start soon so that ought to deliver up some interesting developments in access technology. Over the next week, I'll be starting to use my talking microwave. I've heard the manual as well as a podcast demonstration of it on the Blind Geek Zone which was very helpful indeed. I ought to have it mastered pretty quickly. Dad also wants me to set up the new router in here. I'll be taking the one we currently use to my apartment. It's better to make certain the new router's going to behave itself before I go. Other than that, I believe the focus is going to be turning toward furniture. There's a bed to shop for among some other things.

Now that all the paperwork seems to be done, it's starting to really sink in. Very soon now, life as I've come to know it is truly going to change. I keenly look forward to this new chapter so long overdue. I wouldn't wish the wait I've gone through for afordable housing on anybody, but at last, it's nearly over for me.


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