YouTube to the rescue!

I’d reserved a midsized car for our trip to SFO, but Hertz gave me a Ford EcoSport Titanium instead (a free upgrade). All was well until I wanted to put the luggage in the back – and I couldn’t figure out how to open it.

I expected there to be a button somewhere near the camera, or something on the remote, or a button or a lever in the car. I couldn’t find anything. I was almost ready to put the luggage in the back seat, but I decided to let DuckDuckGo guide me and typed the magic spell: “ecosport titanium liftgate”.

The sixth result was a YouTube video titled How to Open the Hatch, Trunk, Tailgate? New 2018 Ford EcoSport SE, and the result snippet said “…you might feel really stupid”. Bingo!

The video was from a Ford dealer; he showed a lot of ways not to open the back until he finally relented and gave up the secret – the hatch opens like a door and the handle is integrated in the trim of the right taillight. What could be more obvious?

The trip to SFO was uneventful once we got the car loaded, as was check-in – no one has asked to look at our Covid documentation yet, but I guess they’ll ask in Heathrow before letting us onto the Portugal-bound plane. Or maybe not – I’ve given up guessing for today.


We had to take Covid tests today (no more than 24 hours before our first flight) to meet the Portuguese entry requirements. We’d scheduled them for late this afternoon at Instant Urgent Care; I was taken aback when they called Diane and suggested we come as soon as we could to make sure they’d still be open!

We got there exactly 24 hours before the flight was scheduled to depart; they were ready for us, and we got the “results are ready” email before we got home. It was a lot less hassle than Minute Clinic, and we didn’t have to get out of our car.

I uploaded our vaccine cards and test results to the British Airways site, but their system wouldn’t accept them, so we can’t check in from home. I wasn’t surprised.

Waiting for…

Our fishmonger wasn’t at the Farmers’ Market again this week because her family has been hit with Covid. We went to the market anyway to pick up some cherries while they are still in season, and then we took our usual walk through Los Gatos, including a quick trip to Oak Meadow Park where the geese were on the march.

This afternoon, we saw the City Lights World Premiere production of Waiting For Next. It’s the story of two guys who meet in middle school and become best friends – the play follows them from age 12 to 40. It was written for the two actors who performed it, Wes Gabrillo and Max Tachis, and that gave the play a real sense of authenticity. I enjoyed it and recommend it (there should be a video version available from the City Lights website in the next week or two; the play runs through June 19 at City Lights).

This evening, we voted in the California primary election. The actual Election Day is June 7; we plan to be on the Douro River then, so we chose not to wait.

Tomorrow, we get fresh Covid tests to meet the Portuguese entry requirements, since it appears that they won’t accept a US doctor’s Letter of Recovery. US Vaccination certificates are not sufficiently robust to make them happy, either.

Waiting is no fun.

Peccable Logic

My Learned League season has not been going well so far; I didn’t get my first win until Day 6 (of 25), and I am near the bottom of the standings.

This morning, I opened the “results” email and found that I’d lost yesterday’s match due to changing two perfectly good answers because I had second thoughts.

Gatorade High School Basketball Player of the Year Award winners from 2017 (Megan Walker), 2018 (Christyn Williams), 2019 (Azzi Fudd), and 2020 (Paige Bueckers) all went on to play basketball at what university?

Even though I’m not much of a sports fan, I do page through the Mercury News sports section every day. They cover Stanford women’s basketball well, so I was sure none of those women had played at Stanford. I also knew that Connecticut has had a very strong program for many years, so it was going to be my answer. Then I remembered that South Carolina had won the 2022 tournament, so I wrote them in. I should have stuck with Connecticut.

GEOGRAPHY – A city named Cairo is famous, perhaps above all else, for its location at the confluence of two major rivers. What are the names of those two rivers?

The question was obviously asking about Cairo, Illinois, not Cairo, Egypt, and one of the rivers was clearly the Mississippi. I thought the other river might have been the Ohio, but rejected it in favor of the Missouri because Cairo, Illinois isn’t in Ohio! It’s not in Missouri, either, but that didn’t bother me. It should have.

Learned League is a lot of fun, but sometimes I trip over my own mind. At least I got all six questions right once this week!

Today the Rabbi texted me

I remember reading the first Rabbi Small novel, Friday the Rabbi Slept Late, not long after it was published. It was a mystery set in a small town in Massachusetts, and the protagonist and detective was the local Rabbi, Rabbi David Small. It was a success (the author, Harry Kemelman, won the Edgar Award for Best First Novel), and the series continued until Kemelman’s death, though I quit reading after the sixth or seventh book.

This morning, the (incoming) Rabbi texted me to wish me Shabbat Shalom; I returned the sentiment and got back to proofreading the photo book Diane is making about our most recent Tulip Time trip.

Several hours later, I looked at my phone again and found I’d missed another text from Rabbi Nico – he didn’t just want to wish me a Shabbat Shalom, he wanted to talk. It’s as though he’d read my blog posting of yesterday – but he’d actually read the committee minutes I’d sent out yesterday afternoon and wanted to discuss what I’d written there.

It was a good conversation; I’m looking forward to his official arrival.

Shabbat Shalom!