Sunday, March 20, 2011

Man, I feel old!

Okay, sure, my 47th birthday is just around the corner (yes, I've never been one to hide her age, bring it on!), but I sure never expected to see things I own, or that I remember clearly, in a museum.

But, I digress. I wrote about our trip to Stanford in my blog at Caringbridge (you can read it here ) and how we were all of a sudden left with a whole day to do... nothing because they cancelled Nicky's surgery. If it would have been a great sunny day, I would have taken Nicky to San Francisco or the beach but it was raining cats and dogs so I felt doing something indoors would be more appropriate.  I googled museum on my iPhone and the Computer History Museum popped up, just a few miles from the hotel, and it looked like it had a video-game section, so Nicky was sold. When we got there the clerk told us that they were having some 'glitches' today and the entrance would be free. Glitches? I noticed none of the monitors were working, monitors that usually have some mini-documentaries playing throughout the entire exhibit so I was a little bummed, but the glitches were fixed within the hour, so then we tracked back. What a cool place!!!

This gadget here caught my attention. It was a programmable calculator made in 1965 by a company called... drum roll please... OLIVETTI! Yes, Olivetti is the 'main' company in my hometown of Ivrea in Italy, my dad worked for Olivetti for 50 years! This calculator was the first of its kind because it had the ability to store programs and data on magnetic strip cards. It was the very first calculator that was also a computer of sorts, it sold 40,000 units! I need to ask my dad if he remembers it when I talk to him today.

You will never guess what this silly looking thing is. In 1969 Neiman-Marcus offered this 'kitchen computer' in their Christmas catalog! For $10,600 you got this computer, a cookbook, an apron, and a two-week programming course. It had a built-in cutting board and it came with a Honeywell 316 minicomputer. The interface consisted in binary switches and lights. None were sold, LMAO!

In the early to mid '90s I was a manager for a computer software and videogame store called Babbage's (only a few stores survived the merges) and I remember having all of these software packages on my shelves and explaining to people what 'Windows' was. Isn't that crazy?
The history of PAC-MAN. Nicky basically "parked" in this section of the museum, they had areas that explained the histories of some of the games and they had in display every videogame system ever made! They even had games you could actually PLAY, so Nicky loved it. While he soaked all of this up I roamed around the museum looking at what he considered 'boring' stuff such as the computers made for NASA, Mainframes, old calculators, old punchcard machines and tons of other amazing stuff. I was completely fascinated to look at these old looking things and calculators as big as a room. I actually spent quite a bit of time in the 'Internet' area. They had a slideshow of website's main pages as they appeared in the 90s. Sad part is, I remember all of them! Sigh.

In the gift-shop I spotted Computer Engineer Barbie. LMAO!

Later at Target I spotted "Kitty Care Vet" Barbie and "Pizza Chef" Barbie. Didn't realize they were making all there Barbies nowadays! I have boys so I am completely out of the Barbie loop I guess!
On our way back home, passing through Gilroy, I stopped at a little Farmer's Market to get some fruit and I asked Nicky if he wanted to try Garlilc Ice Cream. Uhhh... no. Even I passed. I will try anything but even I had to pass on this one!!

The last stop was at Casa De Fruta, we love this place. I took this pic here, don't they look delish?

Photography and Photoshopping is really helping me right now so I am doing more and more to help me get out of my funk. I know that if it wasn't photography it could easily be food, or alcohol or drugs, so I try everything I can to stray from the obvious ways people react to severe depression by doing something I love, even if that means the laundry gets backed up or whatever it is does not get done. Nicky's EB is taking it's toll on him and me more and more as it has been for the past 14 years, Greg's recovery is slow and frustrating as heck, his mood is really awful at times and even Connor has problems at school, he told me the other day reading to him is 'torture', which would explain why he's failing reading and his teacher and principal are considering retaining him and make him repeat second grade. It may be my fault, I don't read to him enough, I wish I had someone, anyone, that could help me with him, I feel as though I am so busy with everything else he's left behind. Even though I am having a hard time keeping up with my school work (mainly for my math class), dropping any of my classes, as my husband suggested, is completely out of the question. It's the only thing nowadays I look forward to. I look at other people's lives and they seem so simple, their gripes are so minute compared to the burden I have to carry every single day, a burden I did not cause. I have questions for God, tons. I don't really ask 'why me', as there are plenty of people dealing with children with health issues, I just wonder why he had to throw Greg's enourmous health issues in my lap as well. Don't I have enough on my plate? I spend so much time changing bandages and taking care of Nicky's needs that many times I am left with very little time to take care of Greg's and Connor's. I want to be the best mom I can for him, I try so hard to do everything for him, but there is only one of me! THERE IS ONLY *ONE* OF ME! I can't do it all! Why God? WHY???

Tears are streaming down my face and it's a good thing. I've been trying to cry for the past several days without success. Thanks for listening and thank you for letting me vent.