Memories….


 

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A quiet night here…just remembering holidays past. Snow and cold and kids. Nothing like that now.

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No warm fires, or decorations or happy voices…or mad wrapping…

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Nope, those days are long gone. And only memories to cherish as my Christmas gift. And thank goodness for those!

 

 

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Poem: By The Lake


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Sweet moments when we walked together

by the lake

on a blazing day, our love just paces away

Those colorful flashes

when all the toil

came to rest in my beating heart

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The anticipation of newness of splendor

each passing sky

the humble movement of earth’s daily chores

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And gentle footsteps of those that share

paths, hillsides and mountains with me

My grateful reverence

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For these things

I walk in thanks

In peace

and keep hope

close by

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Soaking Up The Rays


As many of you readers know, I’ve been on a mission of contentment in my life. Pretty much since I moved almost a year ago…and maybe even some years before that really. Coming to the south was part of that on a number of levels for obvious reasons. Gee, I figured living where it was warm all the time, well, I would just naturally just be happier.

Today I had an interesting realization related to that expectation. Usually this time of year, as midsummer rolled around in New England, I would almost get depressed. I love spring and summer. They were my favorite times of year! You can’t beat the beauty of those seasons in the North–let’s face it! The budding flowers, then in full bloom, the trees filling out with their greenery, the smells and birds. And of course, the lack of snow and cold!!! This was the best part.

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Winters could seem endless there: the blizzards, downed power lines, leaking roofs, shoveling snow, winter jackets/boots/mittens/hats/scarves and frozen body parts, plus the driving. It was all just awful! When those days finally melted away into warmth, it was heaven on earth. Those who haven’t experienced it, well, they don’t know real beauty.

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So when August would come, I would think: summer is half over and that means Fall and that means it will start getting cold soon. I know, silly of me, but I couldn’t help it! The summers seemed so darn short some years and the winters horrendously LONG. And time just moves faster now that I’m older. All the projects one planned for the summer, there was never enough time…

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But I realized today: wait a minute….there IS no real winter here! No fall or snow coming in few months. In fact, it’s lovely weather (although I haven’t minded the hot weather either). It was crazy to think about! I’m tan, have no winter clothes to drag out, no boots to find, no moth eaten hats, no rusty shovels to find…nope, just my flip flops. Yesss!

True, the gardens aren’t as nice. I do miss that terribly. I’m not crazy about cactus or Palm trees, or lizards. But I have seen Cardinals and some other cool birds. Maybe the new place I’ll put up a feeder. And maybe I’ll try some more potted plants. And since it’ll be my own back yard (sort of), I’ll sit out more and enjoy.

You see, I have this tan now–all year round!

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Good Or Evil?


There are some things in this world that can either a very good thing or a very bad thing. Recently, I’ve wondered if the Internet is a perfect example of one of these things.

Certainly it is quite obvious the wonderful qualities the Internet provides to us all–especially you bloggers out there! For me personally, I never would have had the opportunity to test my writing or photography skills on such a public scale. Much to my surprise, both have been greeted with great positive delight and careful considerations. It is truly a highlight in my life (if that says anything about my life!!).

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Delighted

Another amazing–and so current–part of the web is how it connects people! Again, it has been my great fortune to meet some wonderful bloggers who have become my friends. But beyond that: people meet future partners, have job interviews, start businesses, visit Grandchildren, read the news from around the world and get any random bit of information from this amazing thing called: The Internet. You never, ever would have thought of this 30 years ago!

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 Fellow bloggers fall from the same tree!

But this very same thing that helps, can harm. Most of us are innocent in our browsing and searches: looking for how to spell some word or how to cook some new dish. All these things are at our finger tips. We can do or find anything…and so can someone with evil intent.

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The dark side of the Internet

The Internet gathers information like Antarctica gathers snow. Each snowflake holds a bit of data waiting to be read. Purists have been trying to keep the web free from monitoring–let the data be free and unencumbered. People have a right to search, gather and download whatever they want from this treasure trove of information no matter what they may do with it after some say…. Or do they?

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The treasure trove tree

Police, FBI say it’s OK to get on a perp’s phone or computer if they were terrorists. Maybe they could get information that could lead to stopping further attacks. Others say if we set a precedent  of hacking into people’s privacy, then we’re as good as lost. Back to the McCarthy era of profiling potential bad guys. Some feel if you have nothing to worry about, then you shouldn’t worry about the Internet being monitored–your data being monitored for subversive searches: if you’re innocent, no problem.

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Find the Red!!

There is always a way to get information from one group to another, Internet or no. If the bad guys want to recruit, they will. Even within Nazi concentration camps, the prisoners had underground rebel groups that stock piled weapons. They had no web to pass this information back and forth, rest assured of that one! But the Internet makes it so easy and so International! Click a button and wham…join a terrorist group. Scary.

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A mysterious symbol? No just a tile on my patio! 🙂

Certainly, we all want to be safe from these horrible extremist groups, but our right to privacy in this country is also paramount. Unfortunately, every time we push the power button on the computer and hit either Google or that big E….we’re putting ourselves out there for anyone to find us….eventually. Hopefully it’s only for things like clothing ads and other nuisance items that attach to your searches.

I guess the moral of the story is: be careful what you search for, because Big Brother may eventually may be watching.

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If you find me big Bro, I just want peace!

Tornado


We had a tornado watch at work today. A strange alarm kept going off in the dungeon where I was working and voices kept coming on overhead to announce the possible tornado. Everyone but me seemed pretty calm having lived through it before, although some were checking the alerts on their phones (actually we’re not supposed to have our phones on at work). But I was just sort of bewildered figuring when I left work that I would be swept up like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz never to be seen again….

I told them this at work as I was leaving…and they assured me that I would know if one was heading towards me, but not if it was coming from behind. And yes, I might just end up in Oz…so just make the best of it. Yikes, I had actually forgotten my ruby slippers….

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You see, I’m actually a girl of blizzards and ice! This I know from…cars doing 180’s or hitting your breaks and having nothing happening. But being picked up off the ground by a giant funnel of wind? Egads! No thank you! Give me snow and freezing rain any day! That I can deal with!!

When I left the building there were some guys standing around where I punch out and they assured me the tornado had left the area, but it was still pouring. Oh great, my umbrella was in the car and the parking garage is not close! When I mentioned this, they asked why I wasn’t walking through the hospital to leave? Um, because I’m new and didn’t know the way I said sheepishly. Luckily these dudes were happy to help a sister out so I only got slightly wet.

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I have no idea if all the palm fronds laying on the road were left in the tornado wake or just from heavy winds, but I made it home safe and sound…. And I didn’t see any Flying Monkeys on the way home either!!

Yes indeed: there’s no place like home!

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Out Of The Fog


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So I’m ready to come out of the cold and fog into the sun and light. Today I announced to my chief at the fire station that I will be giving my notice as soon as I can find a buyer for my home. It was an amazing relief!

Now of course there are miles to go before this can happen, like fixing the house, the snow melting so someone can even get in to fix the house and then hopefully finding a buyer. But still–it was such a sweet feeling.

I wasn’t planning on saying anything until the end–until the contract was signed. But today, something just told me to do it. And I’m glad I did. Many of my friends already knew and there was a chance he would find out anyway. But more importantly, just because I felt that the place had let me down, was not a reason to do the wrong thing.

There are many reasons I’m leaving the job and it’s sad for me. I’ve worked hard to carve out a reputation in the community and I’ve tried hard to do a good job. Sadly though, it’s just not a place I’ve ever fit in. Story of my life! I’m not a follower and one is better off being a follower there. My kindergarten report card said: She is a born leader. Oh my. It also said if the kids don’t play the way she wants, she doesn’t let them play. I’ve worked on that one most my life….

Anyway, whatever the reasons are moot now because I’m moving on for many reasons. The most important one is that I’m moving south to be near my Mother. This is a relationship that needs more mending. It’s been 40 years since we’ve lived close by and it’s time to be near again. We left each other on odd terms many, many years ago and while we’ve stayed in touch (and not on bad terms)–it’s time to become a family again. We’re both very excited.

And I’m getting older and don’t like the weather in the north anymore. Some sunshine will do me good! This climate change is true, I don’t care what anybody says–the winters are more brutal.  Maybe a hurricane will blow me away, but at least it will be sunny in between.

So, it’s time to start again. Create a new chapter and new life. I’ve been hedging towards this for years now and never had the guts. But finally all the planets aligned. And, well, it was simply time.

I came to where I live now 20 years ago with a husband and three daughters and high hopes. I’m leaving now divorced and my kids grown and doing their own things. The daughter that lives with me now is sending me off with blessings. She is thrilled to be living in her own apartment (she was the one thing that kept me here for so long).

With those blessings and great sadness to leave friends behind, I face ahead with great joy and hope for new and hopefully this time, successful steps of my life!

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