Sunday, August 30, 2015

A Long Day...

I was up before sunrise, thanks to the cat who is now sleeping soundly. I took the garbage out, changed his box, went online and then gradually began falling asleep and made my way back to bed, only arising to his pleading meows at 1 PM. I'm not sure he wanted anything other than to know I was still on the best end of breathing. He's a funny old thing.

It is overcast today and so far, no more rain. I give it another two hours the way the heat and humidity are building. It is 89 F or 32 C, depending upon where you live, and I am dreaming of winter, sipping tea and preparing to write offline. I am grateful that Erika has gone, but we still have three more very active months of tropical depressions, storms and possible hurricanes to contend with. I grew up with tremors and mudslides. While they were not a picnic, I think I prefer them.

Some of you seem to think the cat is the culprit in my alternating episodes of sleeplessness and exhaustion. He is merely reacting to me...

Until Next Time...

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Storm Watch...

It appears Florida is still in the path of Erika, so I'll be buying extra canned goods, water, batteries and other things when I hit the grocery on Saturday. While it may veer, if it does hit South, we will likely get rain which often leads to flooding and the shortage of electricity in places. I hope that's the worst of it. Hurricane season does not end until the end of November. Presently it is a bit overcast, as in the photo below which looks darker than it was. Rain is forecast. Big surprise.

Stay dry and be well...

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Sorry I don't have a photo of this...

The rain was much shorter today, and afterward, I ventured outside just to see how long I could stand the heat and humidity. On a roll through the little neighborhood here, a loose, Paris Hiltonesque  canine came from nowhere and in little dog fashion, began following me around, all the while barking like mad.

The dog seemed more interested in attempting to bite my chair wheels than it did me but that was small consolation when I discovered that one of my spokes had come out and was badly mangled during my getaway. After several attempts to straighten it, I gave up and simply extracted it. I don't think one missing spoke will make a difference to the function of this chair.

I am an animal nut and generally like dogs but some of these smaller breeds seem to be rather Napoleonic. They are compact but feel the urge to be loud and take on every larger thing that crosses their path.

On another note, I've been awakened yet again at 2 AM by my male cat who appears to think he should have the privilege of a snack at that hour. Any suggestions for curbing this behavior? His vet simply had a good chuckle...

That's it for now as I'm getting bleary-eyed...

Sunday, August 23, 2015

An Interesting Time...

My online writing class ended. I made it through 13 of 30 "kick your ass" grief-related prompts with over 7000 words and I continue. While not easy, it has been interesting in the sense of being more revealing than I would have anticipated. I've discovered, among other things, that I do not transition quickly from whatever feelings arise back into the space of what now constitutes "normal" life. Whether this will change, I do not know. I also feel more self protective than usual, and since I am an introvert by nature and very private, it is harder to write blog posts about what I am doing or feeling.

On another note, I read a small magazine article about forming friendships as an adult, while waiting for an appointment the other day. It turns out that proximity and consistency are important, rather than shared interests. The author also asserts that online friendships such as those made on Facebook founder easily while face-to-face contacts are more easily maintained. Additionally, the author contends that it is possible to bond with almost anyone as long as regular contact is assured. Having had friends of varied backgrounds throughout my life stems I think from growing up and traveling a lot as an expat. My perspective was a bit wider as was my exposure.

The little exposure I've had to Facebook leads me to think that many people now assume "friending" and "liking" are the same thing as truly knowing someone and desiring to understand their inner landscape as well as ones own which cannot be done in what appears to be a highly formatted context. While I might appreciate your photo of a glorious sunset, there is no substitute for conversation beyond the odd comment for creating or sustaining bonds.

Blogging, on the other hand, has afforded me the chance to read and think about a variety of perspectives I might otherwise never encounter and over time, with consistent contact, I've developed some friendships. These, of course, are a bit different than face-to-face friends, but are valuable and enjoyable nonetheless.

What do you think?

Friday, August 7, 2015

A piece of writing from my class...

It was the hair color that I noticed first. You know, the shade that every unimaginative person on the planet refers to as “carrot-top?”

As the little girl’s feet moved back and forth, her head would dip, a syncopation fathomable only to her but amusing nonetheless. She was all arms and legs and flying braids as she turned, and spying my chair in the aisle of the store, flew toward me, saying, “Wow, your chair is cool.” To which she added, apropos of nothing, “Do you like my shoes?”

Normally, a late middle-aged woman in a wheelchair in twenty-first century America does not elicit this reaction. I glanced around, looking for the face of a worried parent, and finding no one, smiled as this small whirlwind skidded to a stop in front of me.

“Hello,” I offered. “You’re full of energy today.”
“Yep,” she said. I just got new shoes, see?”
Presenting her feet for my inspection, she removed a lollypop from a shirt pocket, unwrapped it and pushed it into her mouth, waiting for my reply.

Looking at the side of one shoe, I noted the redheaded hero to girls the world over, stating, “Oh, Pippi Longstocking was one of my favorites when I was a kid.” This was met with, “Mine, too. My grandma reads to me. We came to buy socks.”

Before we could take the discussion further, an older woman appeared, and saying, “Excuse us,” promptly seized the little girl’s arm, pulling her away as I bid them both a nice day.

It wasn’t until I was outside the store expecting the bus that I noticed tears welling, seeing in my mind’s eye, my late friend, Pauline, and her eldest girl, their two red heads close together, long ago, the first Pippi book, spread upon on their laps. Proof positive that the grieving brain makes strange connections.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

It's Not Raining!

I was so thrilled to see a bit of blue sky when I opened the door this morning. What a nice way to start a birthday, yes?

I'm off and rolling in a few minutes but wanted to thank those of you who have left them for the birthday wishes. I got a surprise from London yesterday...My friend Steve who is here visiting family, stopped by on the fly and found me at home. He and I have been friends for almost thirty years and he is a sweetheart. It was a quick hello and a bit of a chat before he headed off to his dad's but I love that he thought to stop by. You can find his blog here. Gotta love a guy who hangs out and paints his toes. By the way Steve, I am not a Waitress is my favorite, too!


Sunday, August 2, 2015

Well, Guess What? Another Rainy Re-post

This post and photo were originally posted March 1, 2009. Both are by this blog's owner and are reprised here for your enjoyment. It has been raining most of the day, and after a brief respite, the clouds have returned. Stay dry.


Watching the sky slowly stew before graying,
I felt
Before seeing,
tiny droplets pelt
the surface of my shoulders.

First shy, then insistent,
a lover's fingers
brushing, then caressing skin,
drawing a surprised breath
at the mysteries of full embrace.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Birthday Story: A Re-posting

I have posted this every year since my blogging debut in 2009. For those who've not read this before, I will be fifty-six on Tuesday. Wishing everyone a dry and happy week.

Fifty-six years ago this week, a twenty-year-old woman, soon to be divorced, was packing to leave her sad excuse of a husband. She had been to her OBGYN earlier that day for her seven month prenatal visit and the doctor had cleared her for the drive she planned to make from South Carolina to Florida, where she planned to stay with her grandmother.

Told that her pregnancy was progressing normally, she looked forward to leaving and having time to settle before her late October due date. As evening lengthened, she began to feel something wasn't right, and by the time she had reached a friend who drove her to the hospital on a nearby Air Force base, labour had begun.

Steps were taken to halt its progress, including she would later claim, being given something that knocked her out. Upon reaching consciousness early on the morning of August 4, she learned that a daughter had been born. Doctors were not optimistic about the newborn's chances of survival and her young mother was afraid of the loss of this, her second daughter, in just under a year... 

That young woman was my mother and I will think of her throughout the day as I go about appointments. She is no longer living, and while we often had a stormy relationship, I owe her much. Having cheated death on more than one occasion, birthdays now hold a special significance for me. I have learned to be humbly grateful for friends, time and the myriad other things that fill my life.

As I celebrate, I'll also pause to remember the special folks I've met through blogging. Thanks for being out there. The photos are me as a scrawny, underweight girl, born the first day of the thirty-second week and me at about fifteen, long ago.

 Until Next Time...

Taking Bets on a Rain-Free Birthday...

It has rained here so much I am starting to feel waterlogged. Add to that a bit of cabin fever and a cold and you have a situation I'm merely making the best of at the moment. One thing I've been doing daily is checking the weather, hoping for sun. So far, the report for Tuesday this week is rain-free. I will be spending part of my birthday at the dentist's office. No big plans this year. We'll see if the weather prediction holds. I hope everyone enjoys the weekend.