All is not lost, but....

The good news is: I have my repaired computer back. The bad news is: There is just data and Windows, no programs. The good news is: There is some data that managed to be retrieved. The bad news is: I can't find my Quicken CD to load in order to access my financial data and update it. The good news is: Most of my pictures were retrieved. The bad news is: I can't get an internet connection working, so the computer's value to me right now is just as a storage facility.

So here I am blogging on my work computer once more.

I am a record keeper. I get it from my dad, who kept records of every bill he ever paid, I think. I remember that every once in awhile, just for kicks, he would dig in some files and look up his utility bill from 15 years ago. He wrote dates in his hymnal by each hymn to record when the hymn was used (so he didn't repeat them too often; he was a choir director).

For several years, I kept a diary of sorts. After we moved to Maine, the habit dwindled away, mainly because I found myself writing the same boring schedule ("I worked today."). When Ed was an active pastor in Tennessee, and I didn't have a job except that of pastor's wife, my diaries were full of interesting things. I recorded everything about each church service, the sermon topic, the choir's music, general attendance at each church, etc. I wrote down every time we ate out, every night we went to a high school football game, what book I was reading, how much I exercised, my attempts at making homemade bread, what TV shows or movies we were watching. I wrote diligently about our vacation trips. I recorded car repairs, errands, things the kids were doing. I mentioned our visits to parishioners' homes.

Life was certainly full of things to record back then. The kids were still at home, which made a difference. I wrote letters to Rachel and Matt until they turned 18 years old, then had them bound as my gift to them. So back then, I was still writing down things for posterity.

I mention all this because, of all my Kodak digital pictures that could be salvaged off my computer, there is a month or so missing. August 2004. Ordinarily, if you asked me what I was doing in August 2004, I wouldn't know and wouldn't care. But now that August 2004 pictorial documentation is missing, I'm obsessed with what I did in August 2004.

My family can attest that I have a passion for photography. Rachel says I've taken more pictures of Caroline in one year than I took of Rachel in her whole life. The guy who restored my computer was amazed at the quantity of pictures on there. I guess, then, instead of documenting my life with journals now, I am documenting my life in pictures.

The pictures come in handy, too. I once had an disagreement with Ed over whether our couch had ever been in the front parlor. He said it hadn't, and I knew it had. So I dug through my pictures and triumphantly produced the evidence - there it was in the front parlor, sitting by the bow windows. After the picture proved my point, Ed did vaguely remember how our dog Rusty used to jump on the couch to look out those windows at the cats.

It's just this August 2004 business. My lost month. It's just a few days, yet it is bugging me, because now I know I don't know. Before last night, I didn't know I didn't know, but now I do. (I sound like politician-speak.)

So I've retrieved most of my photos, thank goodness, but I'm still without a working computer, at least one that does me any good, until my new Mac comes.

The good news is: I'm getting a Mac!