Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

It’s been a rough 4 days in more ways than weather

Friday through Monday  December 13, 14, 15 and 16, 2013
Sebastian Inlet State Park



The weather went south on our beach days.  It has been too windy to bike or kayak or be in the water for the past 4 days.  So on Sunday, I decided now was the time to Wipe my Dell Laptop of Windows XP and install Windows 7.  The install went amazingly well but that's when the real trouble began and the last two days have been a nightmare

I’m finding that with Windows 7 I am not able to many many things I was able to do in the past and when I figure out how to do them, things that were one click operations are now 2 or 3 or 4 or even 5 clicks to get the same thing accomplished.   And nothing is less user friendly than moving from Live Writer 9 which was wonderful to Live Writer 2012 which was obviously not designed for the part tine blogger like but for someone with much more knowledge of publishing who wanted way more professional options.

Not to mention that IE7 won’t allow me to bring up blogger.com.  I get this message and have tried googling an answer for it but haven’t found one that works.  I read that this has been a problem between microsoft and google since 2009 so I thought, OK google wins I’ll use Chrome.  But with Chrome the same thing happened only instead of the message saying (IE8) it says (Safari).  I do not use the latter so who knows what argument google has with Safari even if you are using their browser.  When I try to bring up google to change my layout or anything on the dashboard it will not come up and instead up comes this message.  If any of you have ever had this problem, please let me know.

Possible Problem with your ‘*.gwt.xml module file. 
The compile time user agent value (gecko_8) does not match
the runtime user agent value (ie8).  Expect more errors.

Obviously this may never get posted if Live Writer and Blogger will no longer talk to each other now that I’m using Windows 7 and Live Writer 2012.  I actually tried uninstalling it and using Live Writer 11 but even when I uninstalled it and rebooted my machine, the 2011 installer said Oh no, you have a more recent version, uninstall it first.  WHAT?  I did uninstall it.

SO….. there may not be any more blogs from this pair of full timers if it gets any more difficult than this.  It just isn’t worth it.



There were two days before the Nightmare began.


On Friday it was still plenty windy when I went out on bike for Sunrise.

Friday St. Sebastian 014



Friday St. Sebastian 008

Friday and Saturday have had the same weather – cloudy and windy although the winds have not been rocking and rolling the rig.  But they have been too strong to do much but check out the sunrise and sunset. 




Taking a morning drive means a bakery stop.


Since it was so windy, on Friday we decided to take a drive over to St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park and check out the trails and kayaking.  Of course on the way we had to stop at a little bakery in Vero Beach for a chocolate croissant .I was shocked that they had a chocolate/bacon croissant and he chose a ham and cheese instead.










Friday St. Sebastian 119


After we left the beach communities it was a nice drive through a rural area with traditional Florida cracker houses and interesting historic signs along the way.   This one about the town of  Fellesmere being the first in Florida to give women the right to vote nearly 6 years before the Nation follow suit was the most interesting.  Read the marker inscription here.



Friday St. Sebastian 127



St Sebastian State park is large and has a lovely visitors center.


Unfortunately it was staffed by volunteers who had only been here since October and really couldn’t tell us much of anything about the park or the area or the kayaking.  Not sure what they’ve been assigned to do in those 2 months but learning how to answer visitors questions isn’t one of the things apparently.

We had read that park is 22000 acres preserving open grassy forests of longleaf pine that were once commonplace throughout Florida.  It is home to red-cockaded woodpeckers, the Florida scrub jay, Bachman’s sparrows, sand hill cranes and other birds.  They say West Indian Manatees gather in the C54 canal from November to March although there were none there today.

The park is divided into 4 sections NW, NE, SW and SE which have color coded long trails.  We determined that the park is used primarily by folks on horseback.  They have primitive horse camping with corrals.  Wide tire sand bikers also use it and if you were of a mind to want to walk between 9 and 14 miles you could do the trails in any of the sections.   Even the shortest of these would be an all day venture for us so rather than walk a couple of miles out and turn around and come back, we opted to look for the kayak put ins on the river.



All boat launching facilities are outside the preserve.


Friday St. Sebastian 130


With the help of a map, we found them at two local parks off of County Rt 505.  Dale Wimbrow Park had what we thought was the nicest put in.  It is a small park with the boat launch, picnic tables and a playground.   We spent some of the nicest time today watching a little heron fishing right around the ramp.


Friday St. Sebastian 151


Friday St. Sebastian 145Friday St. Sebastian 149


A short distance down the road is Donald MacDonald Park (who would name their child Donald McDONALD or John Johnson or MAC McDonald??).   Donald’s park has 29 campsites some of which we could put Winnona in.  Boondocking for $16.  



Friday St. Sebastian 158Friday St. Sebastian 157




Friday St. Sebastian 220

The highpoint of today turned out to be that Mothball man was replaced by a couple of nice young fishermen in a tent and lo and behold our electric problems disappeared.   Since it is no longer in the 80’s we didn’t rejoice quite as much as we might have.  The camp hosts claim they cleaned up the mothballs but David went back over and nearly filled a bag with what they weren’t able to see or smell I guess.


And so ends the best day out of the four.





SATURDAY was another VERY Windy Day





More rough seas, no swimming today. But it was fun wading and running from the big ones.





The only other thing noteworthy today was David rearranging the basement to try to balance the weight on the slide which he feels might have been part of the sagging problem.  He has all his tools in these bins and they are heavy.

Saturday Sebastian Inlet 002


Today the fishermen moved to the site on the other side of us and a giant 5th wheel moved into mothball man’s place.  So far so good in terms of power but who needs AC when the winds are blowing and the temperatures are in the 70’s.  Time will tell, we have 5 more days in this site before moving to the back row.


Saturday Sebastian Inlet 005



The sunset was beautiful again.  The winds determine where the clouds will be but they also seem to bring the pelicans out in force.    After dark, the park had one of its “concerts”.  I was afraid of the bugs so David volunteered to go down and check out the quality of the entertainment and let me know if I should risk it.   Last time we were here there was an excellent husband and wife team.  This time he came back at intermission and advised “not so much”.

The sunset put on such a show.  We both think it was to keep our spirits up for what was to come.






















The moon, nearly full, was also beautiful.   We saw none of this beauty for the next two days.  Not only because it wasn’t there, but because we barely had time to check.

Saturday Sebastian Inlet 090




Sunday was still windy so we were still inside. Today was the day.


The sunrise was more clouded than it has been since we arrived. Rain was predicted and it looked like a certainty in the morning.  So, today is the day to wipe out XP and install Windows 7.


Sunrise (6)


Heads David installs windows 7.  
Tails, I wrap Yuletide gifts. 
All while listening to holiday music. 
We’re thinking things are going well here.


Wrapping (5)

Wrapping (1)  

And the install did go well, we thought.  Until I found 3 inboxes in my mail, no way to access blogger and my pictures totally a mess.  Some weren’t even on the hard drive.  I didn’t even try Live Writer today.  Already too much stress.  It reminded me of working in IT for years at the University of Virginia.  What was an English Major like me doing there I always wondered……the money of course.




Monday is the first day in 3 years of fulltiming I have taken no pictures at all and neither did David.


Today things got much worse as I talked about that at the beginning of this much too long post.  No pictures today.  Still windy.  I did not go out for Sunrise or sunset.  Too furious with how much time and energy this was all taking and how much more difficult everything was to do in these new and improved versions of nice and easy programs.  Sorry to end on such a sour note, but that’s how I feel.  I guess you’ll see if this posts.  I do not have high hopes given what’s been going on.




  1. Looking at all the (stuff) outside your bins..I think you need to send David off to the bakery and then you can toss some of it. Who needs 3 or 4 broomheads?...Don't try pulling that on me though, all mine is totally needed and priceless......

  2. Oh, I would SO hate to lose you both.. hope things resolve and you don't stop blogging!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. If I may make a couple suggestions.....

    1) Download and use either Firefox or Google Chrome. I just don't like the way IE works at all, no problem with either of the other browsers.

    2) I move my post over to blogger by "posting a draft". Then I bring up the draft in blogger and just do a few minor formatting changes....like making or getting rid of spaces (returns), etc. Then I publish the blog from there. One thing about Live Writer is that you can make the pictures the size you wish easier than within blogger itself. But many times I need to add a return before and/or after pictures because the writing is too close to the picture for my comfort.

    As for Windows 7, you might want to do a google search on "how to make windows 7 look like xp". There are a few tricks there that will make the change more comfortable for you.

    Good luck. --Dave (GoingRvWay.com)

  4. Oh no!! You can't stop, how will we know where you are? And I must keep seeing your lovely pictures. I use Chrome exclusively now. But I could never figure out LiveWriter. I tried the first summer but it completely froze up my laptop and I had problems with it until I gave up and took it to a repair place. I never tried again. So I can't do neat stuff like move pictures around, but I basically get a halfway respectable blog out there.

  5. Sorry for your computer troubles, but be thankful you don't have the famous Microsoft "Edsel" called Vista. You'd think with all the highly paid computer programmers working for Microsoft and Google, that everything would be a breeze to use.

    I get a little worried when I hear that more and more airliners that I sometimes fly on are computer controlled. What happens when the computer freezes at 30,000 feet and no rebooting makes it come back on line? Hope the computer customer service rep in India is reachable before the plane hits the ground... :cO

    And computers were supposed to make our lives easier? I think you chose the right job in wrapping those gifts! ;c)

  6. You can only wonder why there is no really good operating system out there. I would love to go back to XP. If you think windows 7 is bad, wait to you try windows 8, not there is a real piece of work:(

  7. Haha, I just read Chuck and Anneke's post and boy do I agree. I bought a little laptop a couple weeks ago that had Windows 8 and immeadiately it wanted me to update to 8.1 What a night mare. I took it back to Best Buy and they gave me every penny of my money back!! No more Windows 8 for me til it's been out there for awhile. I too had a computer that had Vista on it. Another nightmare. My old lap top that I'm back to using now has Windows 7, And I use either Chrome or FireFox. Like them both. And I do all my posts on my blogspot.com. then put it on Google + also. Sure would hate to see you leave here. You've been the best "history" teacher I've ever had. I have see so much of the East Coast through your eyes. I feel like I know you personally and it would be like loosing friends if you two weren't on here anymore :( sure hope you can get it all figured out and soon.

  8. I use LiveWriter, Windows 7 and Firefox smoothly together, but I post to WordPress and still have formatting to do. I know you'll work it out. But it's always frustrating at the time. Please keep trying.

  9. Hang in there. The wind does not make for good beach weather but boy those waves are pretty at sunrise.

  10. Stopping the blog is not an option, so just let that idea go! Having said that, I understand your frustration. Blogging is a double-edged sword and only those who've done it for awhile can comprehend just how much time, energy and effort it requires. For the record, I've never used LiveWriter - always written and posted directly from Blogger and Firefox is the browser I use exclusively. For me, it has to be simple or it won't get done. There is too much life out there to be lived (even on windy days) to spend inside being frustrated. BTW, this post looked normal to me. Had you not discussed it, I wouldn't have known there was anything different. We are actually in the market for a new laptop. Now I'm paranoid about buying anything with Windows 8, but can't see that you have a choice if you buy a new one! Hope today is better.

  11. Your title scared me to death!!! Thought something happened to you or David!!! Hope the sun is shining since it appears the computer is working. Blog looks great!!! Sorry you had to go through that frustration;o((

  12. Well, the blog posted and it looks fine, so it appears things are working.

    When I needed a new laptop last year, I was forced to go to Windows 8. It's working fine with Live Writer, Chrome, and I use Picasa to organize and edit my photos. I still haven't taken all my photos from my old laptop and moved them to the new one though.

    I remember having some problem getting Livewriter to recognize my blog, and I can't remember exactly what I did, but it's working now. It's a good thing because Livewriter is so much easier than Blogger to post my blogs.

    Sorry for your frustration, but I know you'll keep plugging at it until you get it resolved.

  13. Hope things are getting better, I've never used LiveWriter, just Blogger and Firefox and haven't had any problems so far. We have Windows 7, I've heard the horror stories of 8 and hope we never have to deal with it.

    We made it to the Gulf of Mexico and are loving it, so nice to be back on a beach instead of up north where it was -18 this morning.

  14. I think I'd rather have the flu than deal with computer issues. I need a new laptop, and am considering a Mac so I don't need to deal with Windows anymore :-) I'm old school too, never have used Live Writer, do use Google Chrome (kicking and screaming away from Firefox). I figured I'm too old to learn new tricks!

    Hope the weather and computer issues smooth out!

  15. Sorry you had to dump XP you could go over the Linux take a while to ge use to but at least it works. I use XP Pro and Vista and if a computer dies I buy one on ebay for under 100.00 and use that till it gives up the ghost. Waiting to hear how you make out with the big 5er next to you? And remember "WHEN IN DOUBT PUT A DONUT IN YOUR MOUTH" Great photos as always...

  16. Sorry to hear you're having so many problems. The post is up, so something worked. My navigation laptop is a Windows 7. Live Writer installed just fine, but I haven't tried to upgrade to the latest version. I use Chrome exclusively and no problems there with either LW or Windows 7. Hopefully, you'll figure out what's wrong without too many more frustrations.

  17. Oh, my, I've been out of the loop too long. I've got to go back and find out who Mothball Man is. Hope that your computer problems have gone with the wind!

  18. Your post made it onto blogger! Yay! You sound mighty frustrated, though.

    I use Firefox with blogger and no problems yet. But I can't use AOL on Firefox, I get a weird 'Blerk!" error. Go figure.

  19. Noooo, you can't stop blogging! But I totally understand how frustrating and overwhelming computer problems can be. Hope things are better today. ;-)

  20. Great Heron pics, hope you guys stay warm tonight, weatherman says it might get down to 58 degrees in the early morning hours. He also says we will be back in the 80's by the weekend.

    My weak blog is done on a Windows 7 laptop, Firefox browser and Blogger.com, then I read it and make changes as I find mistakes. That's the way I roll.

  21. Oh dear, we totally sympathize with your computer issues. They can sure ruin a good day. We have Windows 8 - Mike is okay with it. I'm still getting used to it. Do the computer geniuses ever ask the consumers what they want? MUST they continually come out with a new operating system??? Sure hope things get easier for you because I'd really miss your blog!

  22. I hate how 'upgrades' often times make things worse. Why must they upgrade and complicate already workable and user friendly things? How irritating! The sunset pictures are lovely, but I think the sunrise is my favorite. What a beautiful moon! I am glad you got to see some water fowl and experience some ocean wind in the midst of the computer struggles! I know how you hate computer struggles!! Me too!


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