The fog is clearing.

When I awoke this morning I had the vaguest feeling that maybe the fog around my head was a little less dense than it’s been for the past ten days or so.  I didn’t really trust the feeling so I rolled over and sorta snoozed for another half hour.  During that half hour, though, something kept nudging me to get up, that today will be better.  Depression is a mysterious, seductive mistress.  Sometimes a fatal attraction.

Fortunately for me the desire to feel better, to be joyous and free, is more powerful in the long haul; and so today I’m up and bathed and dressed and ready to start that sometimes rugged road back to health.  It helps that the sun is shining and that I’m leaving the house early for a date with daughter #1.  Having somewhere to go and someone to talk to helps to ease my transition.

I’m seriously behind with my blog reading.  I’ve missed all of you and I’ll try to start catching up soon.  In the meantime I’ll get outside and enjoy the sunshine, enjoy my daughter’s company, and live this one day–now, today.

I hope you have/are having a good day.

A walk in Tarheel country.

I’m visiting daughter #2 and her lovely teenage daughters.  Their husband/father is traveling.  He just left Kenya and is now on his way to India.  Even though I’m delighted to be here with them, my heart is heavy because another relative and her family are facing serious difficulties which I will not write about in this space.  The hardest part is that I can do nothing to make their road easier.  I went for a walk to look for beauty and to try to give myself a change-of-scenery shock treatment.  The first thing I noticed was this crocus, fooled into thinking it’s spring.

It’s a beautiful day in Chapel Hill and there are signs of early spring in all directions.  Hard to believe that they’re expecting snow starting around noon tomorrow.  Hopefully the temperature will not get cold enough to kill all the blossoms.  I’ll head for home early in order to avoid bad roads.  No snow predicted for my neighborhood.

If you’re a James Taylor fan you will recognize this street sign as the title of a JT song.  Actually  two North Carolina men–James Taylor and Reynolds Price combined their talent and wrote “Copperline.”  You know the smooth voice of Mr. Taylor but you may not know Mr. Price.  He was a professor at Duke University and writer extraordinaire.  His novels have entertained me for many years.  He was master of the written word and won awards for his writing.  Click here to learn more about Reynolds Price.

Apparently this little university town is friendly to Obama.  That makes me happy.  I spotted a black Volvo wearing this sticker on its side.  Obama took North Carolina in the last election.  I’m hoping we’ll be a blue state again in 2012.  Obviously the driver of this car hopes so too.

There’s a tiny park in the neighborhood with an old family cemetery.  The cemetery is surrounded by a stacked stone wall and was the burial ground for the Purefoy family.  The best I can tell the family was/is a prominent clan in this county.  I loved ambling through and reading the headstones.

As I was strolling past the shops in the neighborhood I spotted this t-shirt.  I must say that no one talks about this town without mentioning Carolina Tarheel basketball.  This is Coach Roy Williams pictured on the front of the shirt.  Since we’re in the Bible Belt, I find the message “Get Heeled” rather funny.

There were some humorous items inside the shop, too.



I love the piggies.

And the brilliant rooster.

I arrived home warmer than when I left and feeling a little less sad.  Pictured on the left is a trellis on the side of my daughter’s house.  Here it stands at attention waiting for a better day, a day of flowering transition.  Our family could use such a transition.  We’ll try to plant the seeds needed to accomplish a blossoming of better days.  We can do it.  We will do it.

Lonely and blue.

I couldn’t go to sleep last night. I got out of bed at 1:00 am. I hate when that happens. Most of the time these days (nights) I fall asleep fairly promptly after reading for a while. When my ex first left I would go for days without sleeping. My doctor looked at me with his most serious face and told me, “You have to sleep.” Then he told me all that would eventually go wrong if I didn’t start sleeping. He even pointed out that I was suffering from a broken heart and that I probably needed some help with the insomnia. I guess it’s good to remember that from time to time so that I can recognize how much better I am now. I have to say, though, that I still feel as if some evil spirit has me in its grip when I can’t go to sleep. Insomnia lies in wait to ambush me and remind me that I truly am alone, and sometimes very blue about it.

I suppose the good thing about living alone is that I can get up at any hour and do whatever I feel like doing without worrying about disturbing another poor soul. I got up and googled lonely. That’s how I found this lovely blue picture. Now I don’t know what you get when you google lonely but one thing that came up high on my screen was information from the Lonely Planet travel people. I think it makes perfect sense for Lonely Planet to appear but I was a bit disconcerted surprised when it pointed me specifically to Peru. Big Brother knows I’m going to Peru. Okay, okay, I know there isn’t really anything sinister about it. It’s simply the high-tech times in which we live. I remember a time when we had some semblance of privacy. Then again, maybe not. Maybe we just thought we did. I guess it’s not a problem unless I’m doing something I don’t want anyone to know about. I don’t think I am. Really.

I got a little nostalgic when a song from my teen years popped up. I hit the YouTube arrow and listened to Paul Anka singing “Lonely Boy.” I’m just a lonely boy, lonely and blue. I’m all alone with nothing to do. I’ve got everything you can think of. But all I want is someone to love. Substitute girl for boy and this is a perfect description of me. Well maybe not. I’m a long way from being a teenager and I’m not at all sure I want someone to love. Someone to like, maybe, a buddy, a pal, a friend. Someone to hang out with and do things and go places.

It’s nine o’clock and I think I should go to bed early tonight. Catch up on lost sleep. Oh! One more thing I found as I googled last night–Did you know that if I get too lonely, I can meet a lonely inmate online, male or female? I am excited silly to know that.

Good night. Sleep tight. Don’t let the bedbugs bite. My mom used to say that to me.

Who’s on first?

Have you ever explained something to someone and neither of you understood what the other was trying to say?  When no matter what you said you couldn’t make your message clear?  It becomes a comedy of errors sometimes and you just have to laugh about it.  Abbott and Costello did a skit called “Who’s on first?” in their 1945 movie The Naughty Nineties, which perfectly demonstrates what I’m talking about.  It gets funnier every time I hear it.  Click here if you’d like to watch the clip.  If you’re a baseball fan you’ll love this. It’s a classic.  And hilarious even if you’re not a fan.

I recently had a conversation with a woman at church.  We were making plans to combine the Portuguese and Spanish services on Sunday and I asked her a question about the order of songs in the service.  I usually create the schedule, with the help of the pastor, on Friday night at rehearsal.  This time a third party, M, had set up the schedule.  She didn’t understand what I was asking and I was clumsily trying to explain.  After a bit of incomplete/incompetent (on my part) dialogue, I looked at her and said, “I don’t understand.”  She replied just as simply, “What don’t you understand?”  Aaarrgghh!  Deadlock.  I’m laughing as I recall this incident.  As it turns out, it was my not understanding the Portuguese that was causing the problem.  I realized that after she went back to rehearsing her music and I was able to focus singly on what was in front of me.  As soon as I caught her eye, I gave her a thumbs up to let her know I had resolved my issue.  Fortunately we are both mature enough to realize it was no big deal.  Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

On a more serious note, have you ever tried to communicate with someone who doesn’t want/refuses to communicate with you?  Well, I have and it isn’t pretty.  The last years of our marriage I begged D to talk to me.  He wouldn’t.  Or maybe he couldn’t.  I guess I’ll never know which but the one thing I do know clearly and without doubt–we weren’t talking.  And I know what I think–he had already removed himself from our marriage.  His mind, along with his conversation, was elsewhere.  Once communication has broken down, the door is wide open for miscommunication to occur.  One partner will take a word, a phrase, or even a small sentence and isolate it and obsess over it and make it into something much worse than it was ever intended to be.  It’s so sad when that happens because it’s proof that real interactive dialogue is gone and the relationship is taking a nose dive.

I remember one time when I knew we weren’t connecting with each other verbally, and  I decided I should write him a letter.  (Back in the early days of our courtship D would write me long, sweet letters.  I still have them.)  So I wrote him a letter explaining my feelings about something; I don’t remember what, but probably our inability to communicate.  I closed by saying that either he didn’t get it or he didn’t care.  I also told him I preferred to think it was the former.  After a slow and difficult separation and divorce, I finally had to acknowledge it was the latter.  He got it.

An aside:  If my sweet brother Jack were alive, he would be 71 today.  He hated sharing his birthday with Ronald Reagan.  🙂    I still miss him. 😦

Lazy? Procrastinator? Lazy procrastinator?

I’m lazy.  But it’s the lazy people who invented the wheel and the bicycle because they didn’t like walking or carrying things. ~ Lech Walesa

This bike is a Schwinn Cruiser.  It’s available at Target.  When I recover from my trip to Peru, I think I would like one just like it.

I find it a bit puzzling that the quote above came from Lech Walesa.  He’s a Polish activist.  Since when was he ever lazy?  I wish his “lazy quote” made me feel better about myself but it doesn’t.  He may have had lazy moments but I would never think of applying the adjective to Mr. Walesa based on what I know about him.  His lifetime achievements are many.  I remember that he was constantly in world news in the 70s and 80s.  He was an electrician who became the first President of Poland.  Doesn’t sound very lazy, does he? (Learn more about him here.)

So…am I lazy?  I am, without a doubt, lazy about certain things.  Housekeeping is the bugaboo that constantly reminds me I’m a bit on the indolent side.  I get out the vacuum cleaner as seldom as possible.  I’m allergic to dust (really!) so I don’t like to stir it up.  My blinds haven’t been cleaned since the insurance company sent in a cleaning service after my floors had to be refinished.  That was about three years ago.

I would like to state here that I’m not a total slob.  I clean my kitchen sink and counter tops every morning.  I never told you I was unsanitary.  I also clean and sanitize the toilets and bathroom sinks on a regular basis.  I have some standards.  I even change my sheets from time to time.  Sheet changing makes me chuckle because it reminds me of a friend who, like me, is divorced and living alone.  She said one time that she sleeps on one side of her bed one week and the other side the next week.  That way she gets two weeks between linen changes.  Another friend and I snickered about that because we tend to get two weeks out of ours without switching sides.  Besides, I’m too much of a creature of habit to sleep on that other side.  I wouldn’t be able to read my Nook with the lamp on the wrong side.

At my age I don’t focus on my faults in order to denigrate myself.  Quite the opposite.  I simply like to be realistic about who I am.  And if I had enough money I would be totally comfortable with my inability to make myself do certain housecleaning chores.  I would hire a housekeeper once or twice a month to do the things I hate doing and get on with it.  But alas I cannot.  I have made a list of small goals to accomplish before I head out for my grand adventure and yes, the list includes the dusting and vacuuming.  I intend to come home to a clean house.

I acknowledge that the procrastinator in me is going to keep moving the undesirable jobs to the bottom of the list and I can rationalize why I should do that.  If I dust and vacuum too soon, everything will need more cleaning before I leave.  I can’t have that!  I have things to do, places to go, and people to see.  Important things, places, and people–to me anyway.  Last week, for example, I required most of the week to sew a beautiful, shiny, silky pink dress for my youngest granddaughter.  Then I had to go to her house and see how she liked her new frock.  She loved it.  She even found that she could get it on over her pajamas.  You see I have lots of important do, go, see items on my agenda.

And so back to my original question:  Am I lazy?  (Definition: disinclined to work)  Am I a procrastinator?  (Definition:  one who defers action)  Am I a lazy procrastinator?

What do you think?