Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Memory of a Train

I was doing grandma's taxi service this morning, picking up a couple of the grandkids and taking them to school. (After a stop for breakfast, of course).

As we were driving along the two lane country highway, from one town to the next, I noticed there was a train travelling parallel to us.

I reminded my grandson that when he was little, toddler sized, he loved the trains.

There is an elevated track near the town park where we used to go with the kids. I told him that when he heard the train coming he would run around, all excited, telling everyone "The train is coming, the train is coming."

He was quiet in the back seat, and finally spoke. "You mean I went to random people to tell them about the train?"

Random people? What kind of language is that for a nine year old?

"Yes," I answered. "You told all the people, all the random people."

Kid's got smarts.

Monday, 11 September 2017

Remembering 9/11

Firefighters of Station 9/11

Amid the rubble and the dust

Men did, as such men must,

Fought back their fears,

Choked back their tears,

And went forth, to who knew what.

And from that day each found their way,

From a man; -into a hero,

And time stood still

As it ever will,

At that place

That is Ground Zero.

Deborah Lean

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Wake Up Call

It's amazing how we can get so self involved that we form opinions, hold grudges and can be unthinking, uncaring, about other people's feelings.

I have, for the most part, accepted the limitations of my disease, my Multiple Sclerosis. But pain has been an issue for months now, and my ability to do things greatly impacted. Strangely enough, the pain is not all MS related, but due to the arthritis that has screwed up my back and knee.

I have had to face that there are things I will never be able to do again. Travel is out of the question, even day trips are too demanding. I walk best with a walker, but use the cane more as it seems easier when getting in and out of the car.

This summer I was feeling down, and feeling sorry for myself because I spend so much of my life flat on my back due to back pain. New medication brought new side effects, and some relief, but for the nerve pain only. I have worried that my MS is progressing and have been afraid of what is to come.

So, I admit, I got to feeling sorry for myself, and resentful that people seemed to forget I exist. When you spend too much time alone, that can happen I guess. At any rate, let me say it was a long and lonely summer.

I know my kids are busy with their kids, with juggling their jobs and their own responsibilities. I say I understand, and yet I feel that I was too self absorbed to realize they were dealing with numerous issues of their own. For that I am sorry.

I let small things become big issues, and didn't get out of my bubble of self pity enough to see that other people were dealing with a lot and maybe counted on me being there for them, emotionally, if not physically.

I let a shit load of old stuff affect my thinking, and that is so wrong.

So let me say, I've had a wake up call, and apologize to my family, most sincerely that I was not supportive, understanding, and there for them. I have leaned on my brother and his wife, peers, same generation, as I have avoided leaning on my children. The word BURDEN comes too easily to mind.

I have looked out, and see it's a beautiful day, and we may not have these nice days for long. So like I have to do with my life, I need to enjoy the nice days when I can.

 Love to everyone.

Hurricanes We Have Aplenty

I have a fascination with hurricanes. It may seem strange, but it started years ago when I did some research, after all, I had family living in south Florida and it was a constant threat to them.

I found the National Hurricane Center website, and it became a habit to watch the progression of storms across the Atlantic Ocean.

At first storms are noted by a colored 'X' in yellow, brown or red, depending on their strength. Then they can become a circle of red, then a solid circle that designates hurricane.

Some 'X's make the change, some disappear before they make it across the ocean. For a storm to be given a name it has to reach specific wind speeds.

The names are predetermined, and there are a couple of lists that are rotated every year. If you see or hear of hurricanes and you think they skipped a letter, no, it just means that a storm given a name faded away to nothing.

If a storm is of major consequence, like Katrina, the name is removed from the list and not used again.

Right now we have Irma, making a destructive path across the Caribbean Islands, and Jose still making his way, following in her wake.

I was watching this yellow 'X' that headed toward the Gulf of Mexico, and next thing I knew it was hurricane status and given the name Katia. That's how fast things can change.

Texas is still reeling from Hurricane Harvey, and I don't think New Orleans ever made a full recovery from Katrina. I wish these storms would all veer off into the ocean and leave land, the people and their communities alone.

Hurricanes, tornadoes, flood and fire...what is Mother Nature trying to tell us.

Here's the link to the National Hurricane Center, and the map that tracks the hurricane activity in the Atlantic Ocean.


Monday, 4 September 2017

Drip, Drip, Drip

Isn't it amazing, that despite the usual noises, television, the wind in the trees, the noisy neighbor banging in his kitchen (what is he doing over there?) you can hear and be totally annoyed by the sound of dripping water.

We'd had some rain, but it was now clear, not exactly sun shine, but clear. I could hear this ongoing drip, water on metal, and knew it was the air conditioner. It was cool enough I didn't have the unit running, and it wasn't raining, so what was dripping? My place has a deep overhang, and eaves troughs, so water should not have been hitting the metal top of the air conditioner, but it was.

It was early morning, which might account for my crankiness, and my lack of tolerance for the repetitive sound. I threw some clothes on and went to investigate.

The complex where I live have four units in each separate building. Two front doors on one side, two on the other, then the corresponding two back doors on the third and fourth sides. There is a nice little patio at the front doors, that face and join with the next building of four.

The back doors lead to the grass, maybe a bit of a garden against the wall. I never use that door, and as I stepped out realized I should have been sweeping out that small area.

The drip was coming from the fascia and dripping on the air conditioner. Not sure what that means, as water should not be dripping from that spot, so I'll mention it to the maintenance guy when I see him next.

It finally quit dripping so I could finally relax. My bed beckoned, but as I was up, and dressed,so I made an early start to the day. Apparently I should have been sweeping out that back door. It was covered in grass from when the guy ran by with his giant whipper-snipper thing. I guess the bugs like that safe corner and didn't like my disturbing their early morning.

I got a bite just above the wrist, and it itches like crazy and I now have a quarter sized welt, all red and raised.

I had put baby powder along the edges of the patio where I could see ants and that worked like a charm, I wonder how that would work at the back door, on whatever bit me? First I need to sweep.

Best be prepared, as there's more rain in the forecast, and I just know, no matter what, that drip will come through loud and clear.