Today I am GRATEFUL for:

Gentle breeze and low humidity only 94% this morning, temperature 74. Nice. You can feel a difference as we walk toward Fall. I love Fall. It’s my favorite time of year. This year I want to try to get some time in the woods when it cools down. I’ve been thinking about building a tear-drop trailer so I can go camping with some of my friends. Maybe I will rent one and try it out before investing in my own. Probably a smart thing to do. I already found plans for what I want, just not sure the investment in time and money is warranted even though I do love building things.

Gardens at the Cummer Art Museum Years ago just as I was starting out on my career as a COBOL Programmer, I worked for an insurance company in Riverside. I was so far in over my head that I had knots in my stomach every time I went to work. Some of you may know that feeling. Acting so smart all the while trying to hide that you just don’t have a clue. During this time I spent each morning and lunch in those gardens at Cummer, walking along the river and talking with God. I love that he was there waiting for me every day. Made life more bearable.

imageDr. William Queen who was a professor at UNF back in the late 70’s. He was also one of the principals in a couple of companies I worked for just after Heather was born. I was hired as a receptionist/typist. I spent most of the day transcribing names and addresses and dollar amounts off of a gigantic computer printout (remember green bar paper), into stops in a letter I programmed on an IBM Mag Card II typewriter. I would type a letter and put codes in where I wanted it to stop so I could insert the first name and address from the list. Another button pushed and the typewriter would type the salutation and the body of the letter, stopping only where customized information needed to be entered. First mass mail merge.

One day when Dr. Queen returned from lunch and stopped for his messages we started talking about what I was doing. I made a simple statement to him that forever changed my life. I told him a monkey could do what I was doing and even though I didn’t know anything about computers; I hadn’t even seen the one we used there; I thought if the computer could print out the data for me to use for the letters, it should be able to write the entire letter. Dr. Queen wanted to know if I wanted to learn how to make it do that and I jumped at the chance. Thank you God for people who share their knowledge – such a spirit of giving he had. More about Dr. Queen and how much he changed my life in a Musings Through the Years story at a later date.

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