10 April 2023

What happened this week

  1. Bogga standing guard for me May 20, 2023

    Woke up early this morning and made some tea for myself. Bogga wanted to be with me so I brought him downstairs. He sat on the patio keeping a watchful vigil on every passing vehicle as I enjoyed reading the Economist over the said cup of tea.

    Jay Jay – the terrier – allegedly an hunter dog – opened one eye slightly to see where we were going and then went back to sleep!!

  2. Surprise guest at the Alpharetta Farmers’ market this morning May 20, 2023

    Ran into quite a few neighbors in the Farmers’ market and then surprisingly, into Nachiketa. We were there for our weekly shopping. He was there to pick up some bread from an East European stall.

    We did what you would expect a couple of Bengali quinquagenarians to do… we talked about body aches, medicines and doctors!!!

  3. Cool, breezy day for some brisk shopping at Farmers’ Market May 20, 2023

    The young kids were perfectly ok with the temperatures. They were in and out of the fountain water all the while.

  4. Today’s haul of fresh food… May 20, 2023
  5. “Michhri” !!! May 20, 2023

    That brought back some memories from the yesteryears!! Saw this in the Farmers’ Market. Not that I needed any sugar, but it so reminded of the “micchri”s (মিছরি) from early childhood, that I had to buy a packet. Came back and did two things immediately:

    (*) checked the English word for this. Apparently, it is “Rock Sugar” (that is what it said on the packet too). Had heard of Rock Salt, but never of Rock Sugar. Also, I did not realize that each one of them is a single crystal.

    (*) put one in my mouth and crushed it with the molars just like we used to do nearly fifty years back!!!

    Now, of course, I have to figure out how to put it to some proper use. Old Fashioned cocktail, perhaps?

  6. Out in the lake with the duo! May 20, 2023
  7. Awww!! Canine Co-operation!!! May 20, 2023
  8. These two are too funny! May 20, 2023

    They refused to budge from the door till Sharmila would come out of the restroom!

  9. Rewind-Pause: Last family picture from our Dallas house May 21, 2023

    This was on July 14, 2007 the evening before we left for Atlanta for good. I think we were all dressed up to go to the farewell party at Sunil-Ananya’s house.

  10. Third run – the diagnosis process is going on May 21, 2023

    If you are still following the journey of my health… here is an update.

    The dizziness reduced in intensity (but not frequency) everyday for the first three days and then attenuated to a small but frequent level. Since the symptoms would not go down further, I visited the doctor with all the data I had gathered – plus last 15 years worth of thorough annual check ups of all organs (the last one was three months back).

    The stand-in PCP (my PCP was traveling and he set me up with this doctor) looked at all the data and felt the body could not have gone thru dramatic changes in three months without leaving more symptoms.

    In any case, the entire battery of tests on blood was done. As well as heart. Not a single score came much different from my last annuals and all within range. EKG showed the usual enlarged heart I have always had. Just to make sure we cover all bases, I am getting a ECG done tomorrow. The chances of arrhythmia is negligible (there should have been more symptoms and more intense, per the doctor). But we will know soon.

    Here is another clue… when I have dizziness, it is not like I feel the world is spinning. I just feel unstable myself – like say when you might have had one glass too many.

    So, we are where we were. Or are we?

    Yesterday, while walking to the Farmers’ Market, I told Sharmila that I got that unstable feeling in the morning when I was sitting outside with Bogga. (actually, when I got up). But while telling her, I had to swallow some saliva. As I did that, I felt a little funky. It was not the taste – more like the after taste… what the nose was smelling probably (from swallowing my saliva). I told that to Sharmila and she said – must be your sinuses. I was thinking blood, but I realized maybe that is exactly the feeling you get when the sinuses drain out and you swallow.

    That gives rise to another null hypothesis. Could it be that we were missing the signal among the noise all along? Could it be just my sinuses were creating imbalance in my ears and giving me that feeling? It is true that I had had that feeling while swallowing for the last few days (not always though) and I had had some allergies (specially when I went out on the boat a week back) and I have been spending a lot of time outdoors. But I never had a runny nose – just a feeling of being down a little.

    Here’s is another data – the last time I had what we thought was BPPV? Also was May! Could it be just allergies during this time of the year?

    BTW, on that BPPV front, the doctor did the tests and ruled it out. Which means, in 2020 also most likely it was not BPPV. The doctor could not do the full tests since everything was tele-health (Covid).

    When we came back from the market, I took a Zyrtec. This is NOT a double blind test – so we cannot say for sure yet – but my dizziness did not come back yesterday. Might be placebo! Might be root cause!!

    This morning was good too (took another Zyrtec) and then went for a run. Waited till it was hot like the very first day. This time, instead of shade, ran in the sunshine. First half mile, no problem. Mile marker, no problem. Mile and a half? Yep, I could again feel the low dose of instability. That continued in spurts for the next half mile – when I called it quits.

    So, at this point of time, we have a possibility of arrhythmia or sinus related ear complications.

    We do not know any more.

    I will collect more data, get the ECG done and then see my doctor in a week when he is back. I will ask him for the full urine tests too.

    Meanwhile, if you see me staggering in Alpha Loop, it is NOT the alcohol running… 🙂

  11. Another milestone in riding Pegasus May 21, 2023

    Missed the long ride with Rakesh and Avi this morning due to scheduling conflicts. Made up a little in the evening. Long enough (a little over 100 miles) to make it past the 5,000 mile mark.

  12. Sofa… so good. May 21, 2023

    All three are knocked out.

  13. The makings of a smoked drink – Smoked Cherry Bourbon and Brandy May 21, 2023

    This has 1.5 oz Bourbon, 0.5 oz of Brandy, 0.5 oz Dry Vermouth, 1 tablespoon of Campari, 0.25 oz of lemon juice and 4 dashes of Cherry bitters. I used my freshly acquired rock sugar instead of simple syrup. Smoke some wood shavings of a cherry tree in the glass.

  14. Pen of a different ilk May 21, 2023

    Weekend catching up with pen friends. Do you see something different in the picture? Check out the pen. It is not a standard fountain pen. In fact, if you zoom in the picture, you will notice that it has no nibs. Or any ink barrel for that matter.

    These are pens made of glass. The whole thing is one piece of glass. You have to dip in the ink to write. There are some serrated grooves near the tip that hold the ink due to capillary action when you dip. And then it flows down as you write!

    I am still trying to master the art of right amount of dipping to keep the thickness of font as uniform as possible.

  15. 5K run amidst continued dizziness May 22, 2023

    The allergy/sinus theory did not work out – or at least Zyrtec did not fix it. Interestingly, most all my dizziness – or I should say sense of instability – comes when I am running or walking downhill. Not much when going uphill. Signal? Noise? Who knows?

    Meanwhile, ECG came all clear. Will see if the doctor wants me to check the arteries next.

    But before that, coming up next – full vision check day after.

    The root cause analysis continues. My head is still around something gone awry between by ears or eyes.

    Meanwhile, I am sneaking in the running miles, all the same!

  16. Oh Captain! My Captain!! May 25, 2023

    How many of you – especially my friends from school years in Durgapur St. Xavier’s or Carmel Convent – remember that poem? It was the subject of many an elocution contest those days!!

  17. Bamboo pens. Trying for the first time May 26, 2023

    Thank you Miriam for pointing me to bamboo pens. These may not be the same style that you grew up with in Afghanistan. I got this from China. I need to source some more of this with thinner tips. Great for calligraphy though! On the other hand, I was so excited, I extended your name to be that of a Nobel laureate!