Rick's Ramblings

You have found Rick's Ramblings, a Web Log.

I have been writing in this space for a few years now. Visit the archives to get a feel for my style.

Thanks for visiting one of my creative outlets! Please send me an e-mail, or add a comment to any post.

More Rick Umali web sites at:

Yahoo! Geocities
Lycos Tripod
The World
My Own Domain

Email: rickumali@gmail.com

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Saturday, December 29, 2001
Tonight, outside of Shanghai Village, where I was picking up Chinese food take out, a couple asked me how to get from there to Boston Harbor.

I sighed, explaining to the couple that Boston is quite a ways from here (ten miles). I sent them straight down Massachusetts Avenue, which (if you follow it carefully from Arlington) will take you through Cambridge, into Harvard Square, then eventually past MIT over the Charles River. "After you cross the river, ask for directions again." They thanked me, and went on their way.

Earlier in the afternoon, Jenn's aunt and family came to visit and of course they asked for some pointers for how to get from my house to the local mall. They at least had a map, so I could direct them a little better than the couple outside the restaurant.

I am now wondering, as I write this, whether the couple managed to get to Boston Harbor. Boston is a mean little city for city driving.


Friday, December 28, 2001
I was glad to find yesterday's link to the point about happiness.

When I got my pay check a few weeks ago, attached to it was a note from the president, urging us to stay upbeat during this slight downturn in the market. On the back of the note were the words about being happy now. I subscribe to this thought, but I need to keep reminding myself of this because it's difficult to actually be happy. It's an elusive feeling.

I often think back to my glory days of my school days and ponder the happiness I felt then. I think I'll be doing the same thing when I'm sixty years old, looking back on today and deciding "Boy! I was sure happy back then."

I think the happiness that is suggested by the link is not the pollyanna happiness of fools. It's instead a reminder that life is meant to be difficult. Be happy for the present, for the now. Be happy we're on the journey. And that's not a bad reminder.


Thursday, December 27, 2001


I replaced the CPU fan in my computer. Actually, I went the computer store and had a sales person help me with picking out the right fan. The technician pulled out my motherboard, and unhooked the fan from the CPU.

The new fan is so quiet, I almost couldn't believe it was working. The person who rang up the sale ($7.35) walked over to my machine and attached it for me. I booted it up right there to see it in action.

Now that's service! (I did pull apart the machine with my own screwdriver once I got there, to make it easier for them to help.)


Tuesday, December 25, 2001
The gifts have been opened and sampled. I have enjoyed the bounty of today's special meal. I relish the idea that I have a few more days off from work. Yet the big memory for me is going to mass in the morning with Jenn and Mia, my baby daughter.
At mass, I am reminded that this day is about Jesus, about God becoming flesh through His birth. It's an important reminder.

Too often, I find myself more and more consumed with the traditional concerns of the holiday season: the cards, the gifts, the tree, the decorations. Those end up becoming the obligations of the season, and I grow weary of it.

It's His birthday today. Let's enjoy that.


Monday, December 24, 2001
Whew! I spent forty minutes trying to "win" the Solitaire game on my PC. I finally got a deck that let me finish. Should I try again? Why not! I'm waiting for Santa...


Merry Christmas!





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