The Ottumwa Courier

October 20, 2012

Oatmeal and roses

Et Cetera

former Courier editor

OTTUMWA — The other day, I opened a new paper pack of instant oatmeal and poured it into a cereal bowl. I re-read the microwave directions to be certain of the amount of water to add. I found some new print: “Pour cold water or milk into packet to top of 2/3 fill line located above.” Then you have the right amount of water to add to the cereal in the bowl. Stir and microwave.

What a load off — I don’t have to reach for the measuring cup; just pour the water into the paper packet.

As Jay Leno would say, “How lazy are we becoming?”

And then, in the mail, there was a letter from Newsweek magazine asking me to extend my subscription.

Right now, I’m paid up until next May.

But, more importantly, I just read in the paper that Newsweek plans to cease publication of its printed product by the end of the year.

I don’t want to read a magazine online.

I did return the pre-paid envelope with a message inside asking why would I want to keep subscribing when no magazine will be delivered in 2013? I also expressed my interest in getting a refund.

Guess I’ll have to wait and see what happens next.

Speaking of the mail. I’m getting tired of receiving offers from hearing aid companies and nursing homes. Once or twice a month, I will receive such flyers. Maybe, at my advanced age, I would be considered a candidate for hearing aids. But I’m sure not ready to move into a rest home.

Just because I am a member of AARP doesn’t mean I am decrepit or senile.

I keep picking the last rose of summer.

A rose bud appears, and a cold night’s forecast is in store.

So, I pick the rose bud and put it in my rose vase.

A couple days later, there is another rose bud, and the weather warms.

I like to keep the last rose and let it dry. It stays in the vase until the following late spring when the first rose of summer comes into blossom.

It is nearly November, and I am still enjoying the outside pots of geraniums, petunias and begonia. Even a scarce planting of potted marigolds keeps valiantly blooming.

And so this week I go out to once again get the last garden remnant of a hot summer, and lo and behold, another bud has appeared on another stem.

No complaints. They can keep blooming the rest of the year!

Judy Krieger is a retired Courier editor.