It's a long way... to go. And then, there you are again.
I like food and wine, SF and friends. I read all day at work, so I tend to watch more than I read these days. I've helped run a few conventions, and sometimes can be caught SMOFing.
In the sweet bye and bye, I grew up on a farm in the dry flatlands of Dakota, where there was not one, no, not one, animal that I'm not allergic to, nor plant, or so it seemed back before drugs were not as good as they are today. I went to a one room country school (OK, for a little while, it had two rooms) for eight years, but I never walked even though it was not five miles and not uphill both ways. I did bike a few times, and can barely remember going in a sled behind the two Belgians that had outlived their heydays, and spent most of their time dozing in the pastures, before they got shipped out to the glue factory. Inhalers were not portable in those days, but made of glass, easy to break, and hard to replace on a Sunday. Often the trudge back to the house where the drugs were, and once or twice awakening in an oxygen tent, which was all our small town hospital had. There were dogs and cats, sheep and lambs, cows and calves, chickens, and horses. My great uncles had rabbits. Wheat, oats, barley, flax, and alfalfa fields as far as the eye could see. There was a haymow in the barn, and a row of wood granaries interspersed with steel bins, and small pump houses huddling over shallow collection wells that had dependable water only when the sloughs were full, and then not considered drinkable, even though we would in the summer heat, drink the cold water, especially from the windmill, whose water rose out of ground as if by magic, without the benefit of muscle or electricity.
My older brother got most of the farm chores. I was the hothouse flower with the riders on the insurance policy, and every year or two, when rumors of a miracle doctor made the rounds, I would be off for poking and prodding, puzzlement and examinations, that well, yes, they really didn't have anything much better, but here, try this... I don't ever remember getting proscribed antihistamines, although I'd grown a fantastic resistance to taking any drugs (other than inhaled) during early childhood by throwing up anything they tried to make me take, which may have impeded my parent for springing for something they figured I'd just throw up anyway.
We always had a large garden just beyond the lilac hedge. It ran from beside the barn to past the house and out to the western edge of the shelterbelt, which was the edge of the slough that would fill in the spring, and otherwise be lowland pasture for the milk cows. It would be plowed in the spring with a five-bottom plow, which always seemed like a cause for jubilation, although I'm sure my dad, who usually drove the tractor, didn't think it was. The whole plowing the garden probably took about five minutes, but it would be days of wrangling about when to do it. After pretty much giving up on wrangling us kids for hoe detail, we got Merry Tiller, which bounced around and could shake the fillings out of any mouth, and eventually, after I'd pretty much moved on to college, a Troy-Built, which seemed like a Sherman tank, but didn't require a jugglers skill to use.
Worked in restaurant kitchens/food stores for more than a few years. I've reinvented the wheel thousands of times and have had daily crises training. Have been working as a technical writer: accounting software, hotel revenue management software, reinsurance broking software -- all nice light, crunchy topics. I've been an election judge, almost since Abe Lincoln ran, and I've been supervising my ward/area, it seems, since Nixon.