That headline may be overstating it a bit; nevertheless, I've been in computer limbo since last Wednesday or Thursday and had little time to think about anything all day every day except downloads, setups, transfers, backups, glitches and missing software. So this isn't a real blog post today - just a minor whine because, you know, I'm the only person in the universe this ever happened to...
Who knew Outlook doesn't come with MS Office (only Outlook Express does). Not that it matters. Pretty much all the software CDs for this laptop have disappeared. Last time I remember seeing them was when I installed them in May 2006, and they seem not to have completed the journey from New York City to Portland, Maine, 18 months ago.
How could that be? Did a box fall off the truck? I tore this place apart to such a degree that it may not be in livable shape again until February. Well, that can't be allowed since guests are coming in January. But the missing discs will, I suppose, remain one of life's eternal mysteries.
I actually know what I'm doing in setting up computers from scratch once Windows is reinstalled, but that doesn't allow for lapses in memory - mine, not the computer's. I made a careful list of everything I would need to back up or have handy for the new installation, what new downloads I would need, what my settings are and the license keys for various programs. With the exception of the missing software, I was quite pleased with myself...
Until it came time to import Firefox bookmarks. Ahem - they were not on my neatly organized and printed to-do list, so I am starting from scratch. Years - maybe a decade - of collected and arranged bookmarks (including intended new additions to the Elderbloggers List), and now there's no telling what I won't ever find again. I'm sure there will be some painful surprises over the coming months.
Also, because the new Outlook won't be delivered for several days, I don't have my Contacts list with email addresses, nor emails from many of you that arrived in the two or three days prior to the hard drive wipe on Saturday morning. If I haven't answered, I'm not ignoring you - I just won't be able to retrieve those emails until Outlook arrives.
Even with all that, it's like getting a new laptop from Santa Claus. I know from previous experience that IBM ThinkPad T60s are workhorse machines and this one is now in pristine condition as though it just came from the factory, chugging along nicely like it had never been used before.
To all of you who suggested I buy a Mac (as opposed to stabbing myself) - that's not in the budget any time soon and this computer is working beautifully now. However, you are right and when the time comes for a new machine one day, it will be a Mac.
Thank you all for the commiseration and seasonal greetings. Today is Christmas Eve and for those of you who celebrate, I wish you a joyous holiday and that Santa brings you everything you wished for.
[Today at The Elder Storytelling Place, Georgie Bright Kunkel tells of a special Christmas present from 80 years go that is still shining brightly, titled The Red Plush Coat.]