Dear Readers: It's a lovely time of year for a stroll or jog in the park, but how can you stay safe? Here are some hints:

● Don't go it alone; let someone know that you are going for a walk, and have another friend with you. The buddy system will help if you slip and fall, and a stranger is less likely to approach you if you have a sidekick.

● Walk with confidence and vigor, and in the daylight. This will make you appear less vulnerable.

● Bring with you: cellphone, ID, medical-alert bracelet. Leave at home: expensive jewelry, ear buds and headphones. Music can motivate you, but your focus needs to be on your surroundings.

These hints are courtesy of the San Antonio Police Department. Look on your city's website for more walking and jogging safety hints.

Dear Heloise: During Hurricane Harvey, I used old pillows to soak up any water that seeped in under doors. I placed them as close together as possible. This worked well in my garage. I then threw out the pillows.

William D. in Houston

William D. in Houston: Big hugs to everyone affected by this hurricane season. It's been a rough one, but we are strong, and we will get through this.

Dear Heloise: To save money in my retirement years, I sometimes pay for "half" of something. I subscribe for four days of newspaper delivery instead of seven, I joined the gym for the winter months only, and I exercise outside during the warmer-weather months.

I even had the upper story of my home exterior painted by professional painters, and I painted the lower level myself!

Deborah W., Middletown, Ohio

Readers, here's another hint: Restaurant portions are so large; buy one entree and split it. (Tip the server as if you had two full-size meals.)

Dear Heloise: I've been a reader of your column since the 1970s. I am a claims adjuster who handles thefts from autos (and thefts of autos). There is a lot of crime in hotel parking lots, even at nice hotels. Thieves quickly grab any kind of bag, backpack, suitcase, etc. I'm amazed at how many people leave these things, and their wallets, handbags and tech gadgets, in their cars!

Please remind and educate your readers about the importance of never leaving anything of value in their cars.

Tricia, via email

Dear Readers: When disposing of old credit cards after cutting them up, put some of the pieces in one trash can and the rest in another. This way, no one will have the complete account number of your credit card.

Heloise's column appears six days a week at Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Tex. 78279-5000, or email it to

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