Buildings and Property Maintenance at The Cloister


Bonney and I have lived at The Cloister at St Henry for over 8 years. During this time a great deal of money has been spent on repair, maintenance and upkeep of the Cloister property. Some of the spending is unique to the Cloister property. As I understand it, and am told, prior to the construction of the Cloister buildings and infrastructure, hills were flattened and valleys were leveled with landfill. Since I have been living here $millions have been spent in keeping the Cloister property attractive and well maintained.

These are some of the things I have seen done since we moved here.

  1. The stormwater drainage system has been considerably upgraded
  2. All roofs have been replaced
  3. All streets have been repaved
  4. Major retaining walls have been rebuilt
  5. Slabs, driveways and basements damaged by settling of landfill have been repaired rebuilt or replaced
  6. I’m sure there are many other things I haven’t noticed or don’t know about.

From April to November a contractor, I only know him by his first name “Norman”, repairs and replaces whatever is necessary to keep the outside of our homes in good condition and he is followed by painters who pressure wash, scrape, caulk amd paint the outside of the buildings.

The buildings are being brought up to good condition, section by section, over a number of years. All of this has been under the management and supervision of property manager Floyd and Assoc., our all volunteer ARMS Committee, and our on-site facilities manager Charles Hinton. I don’t always agree with all their actions and decisions, but….on the whole….they do a real good job.

The swimming pool and clubhouse are kept clean and sanitary and are in reasonably good shape under the close eye of other Cloister volunteers, Barbara Swift and Rosemary Padgett .

Most times volunteers are not sufficiently appreciated for everything they do. Many of us, including me, find it easy to throw out suggestions about what HOA volunteer board and committee members should do but I have not been ready to stand up and take my turn as a volunteer worker. Having been a member of the Cloister HOA Board gave me a fresh perspective of the demands made on volunteers.

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Making Cloister Life A Little Easier


None of us move to The Cloister at Saint Henry if we don’t have some unique situation where a “Universal Design” Condo will make life easier. Universal Design is a set of construction principles that help people with either advancing age or physical limitations be more independent.

See http://design-dev.ncsu.edu/openjournal/index.php/redlab/article/viewFile/97/51

Health issues can pose a burden upon a Cloister resident.  Bonney and I have decided to take action to reduce the workload on Bonney that results from some of my health issues. We have hired someone to come twice a month and do a thorough house cleaning. I find the biggest problem during her first visit is staying out of her way as she works her way through our home. She is a whirlwind!

Donita came highly recommended by a good neighbor. Not only is she available to help out with keeping our home clean and livable, she has helped some neighbors with other issues that we Cloister residents sometimes face because of need for assistance whatever the reason, including errands, appointments, etc. Currently she has five clients who reside at The Cloister.

Donita (Tel. 226-4408, she says “Leave a Message”) gives our home a thorough cleaning while Bonney can enjoy doing what she likes, working with our garden. I especially enjoy basil, mint, peppers and tomatos Bonney magically harvests from our little garden area.

About Xfinity/Comcast Video Services at The Cloister


According to the official Cloister website located at  http://www.cloisteratsthenry.com/ part of the monthly HOA Fee includes Comcast Basic Service. My guess is that our monthly fee pays for “Limited Basic” service. I pay for extra services including a digital video recorder.

These are the channels available with Limited Basic Service

HD – availability of HD channels subject to area. HD equipment required.

Channel Description Limited   Basic
2 WKRN (ABC) NASHVILLE
3 ACCESS
4 WSMV (NBC) NASHVILLE
5 WTVF (CBS) NASHVILLE
6 WZTV (FOX) NASHVILLE
7 C-SPAN
8 WNPT (PBS) NASHVILLE
9 ACCESS
10 ACCESS
14 WUXP (MY 30)   NASHVILLE
15 WPGD (TBN) GALLATIN
16 HSN
17 WNPX (ION) NASHVILLE
18 WNAB (THE CW)   NASHVILLE
19 ACCESS
20 WGN AMERICA
21 WHTN (IND)   MURFREESBORO
22 WJFB (IND) LEBANON
100 C-SPAN2
228 WNAB – THE COUNTRY   NETWORK
229 WUXP – COOL TV
241 WNPT2 (PBS) DIGITAL
245 WKRN – 24HR WEATHER
248 WLLC TELEFUTURA
249 WTVF – THIS TV
250 NEWS CHANNEL 5+
1002 WKRN (ABC) HDTV
1004 WSMV (NBC) HDTV
1005 WTVF (CBS) HDTV
1006 WZTV (FOX) HDTV
1008 WNPT (PBS) HDTV
1014 WUXP (MY30) HDTV
1017 WNPX (ION) HDTV
1018 WNAB (THE CW) HDTV
1125 C-SPAN HD
1216 WGN AMERICA HD

My favorite channel is WNPT2, channel 241 on Comcast, the second public TV channel.

Here’s why.

Using my DVR recorder I am able to save newscasts from London, England; Berlin, Germany; Seoul, Korea; Tokyo, Japan; Brussels, Belgium; and Beijing, China; all in the English language. These newscasts provide real news about the world. They cover significant conflicts, issues and events worldwide. These programs are supplied by MHz Networks on WNPT2 (Cable Channel 241).

They seldom interview politicians or corporate executives but they interview experts, usually located at the major universities. They don’t consider street crime as worthy of wasting their broadcast time. Instead of touting stocks, their financial news includes economics and trade news. Instead of profits they report about jobs and news important to the individual viewer. Business news usually relates to events and actions taken that directly effect their citizens.

For many foreign news channels, interviewing crazy or corrupt politicians from the extreme ends of political parties is not considered balanced news, nor worthy of national coverage. Only BBC in London spends much time covering politicians and media celebraties like Lady Gaga but I can fast forward past this stuff.

US cable news channels and financial channels are losing viewership rapidly.

Primetime Audiences Leave Cable News

US financial channels like Bloomburg and CNBC tout stocks and are simply corporate mouthpieces. Their so called news is worthless to an average guy like me. They talk about investing in individual companies while 70% of all stock trades are computer generated at rates of thousands of transactions per second. The 1%, investment bankers, and hedge funds have privileged and special access to the various financial exchanges. If their computer schemes go wrong, they get a restart, if I choose wrong, I’m taken to the cleaners.

My DVR is set to record the selected news broadcasts on WNPT2 and BBC that are run in the time frame from midnight to 7:00 a.m. During breakfast I scan the recordings and and watch those things which may be of interest or importance to me. I can also watch live on the internet.

When I want news during the day I go to the internet and watch live economic and world news (with the capability to go “Full Screen”) on http://www.mhznetworks.org/

What have I learned by watching foreign newscasts?

Well, the German Government is now advertising jobs for skilled factory workers to come from anywhere in the world  to Germany for work . They are offering €45,000 salary per year (that’s equal to $56,250 in US dollars). The US economy has been abandoned by corporations as these corporations move their operations, even their headquarters, abroad. I fear that we must accept a new world where, exactly like my ancestors did when they left Europe for the American opportunity that existed here at that time, we will join less developed countries like Mexico, The Philipines, Carribean Islands, and Bulgaria where Americans will leave the US for well paying work and lower cost of living in other countries and send money, food and clothing packages back to their families in the US.

It makes me a little sad……

A Nashville Treat Over A Week of Thursdays


Tennessean Review “Fiddler on the Roof” on June 20, 2012

Ten months ago Bonney and I went to Chaffin’s Barn Dinner Theater to enjoy a matinee performance of the musical “Annie”. It was made more special when our neighbor told us that her niece was in the cast. Chaffin’s Barn Theater on Hwy 100 in Bellevue is one of those “Fun Nashville Places” that Bonney and I are sure to visit at least once a year. (See my previous post listed in the “Fun Nashville Places” Category.

The musical talent in Nashville is incredible. When we lived in the 12 South area we traveled a few blocks up Belmont Boulevard and enjoyed the fine musical entertainment by the students and faculty of the Music Department at Belmont University. A small donation to the Bruins Music Department put us on the mail list to receive the annual Belmont University brochure covering all the music programs for the year including faculty and student recitals, musicals, concerts, even the Belmont Camerata Christmas at Belmont Mansion on the campus.

Belmont University Tower

Driving down the other direction on Belmont Boulevard took us to David Lipscomb University where we enjoyed plays like “Our Town” at the Shamblin Theater on campus.

Lipscomb University Tower

When we first moved to Nashville nearly thirty years ago during our “Partying Years” we could give our out-of-town guests a treat on those special days called Song Writer’s Night at some of the great music venues like Douglas Corner, Tootsie’s, The Bluebird Cafe, The Station Inn and many others. As many as five songwriters sat on the stage, for the cost of a few beers or drinks and a small cover charge we and our guests enjoyed several hours as each writer played a selection of their own songs. It still can be done today and is well worth the experience.

The next show at Chaffin’s Barn Theater is one of my favorites, “Fiddler on the Roof”. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yGBG8mCt59s&feature=related This show starts May 31 and runs through July 8. We especially enjoy the Thursday Matinees,  Brown Bag your own lunch for admission of $19.00 per person, buy admission plus Box Lunch for $27.50 per person. Either way you have to make advance reservations. Bonney and I have made reservations for  the July 5 matinee. Maybe we’ll see you there.