Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Life in the City (Part 273)

While driving down busy 4 lane Freeport Blvd this morning, I spotted some dude hotdoggin' it across the lanes on his bicycle.  White, blond, approximately 34 years of age (this I imagine telling the cop after the multi car pile up caused by this ass hat).  I slow down because I don't know where the heck this guy is going, and he frantically waves me through because there are cars coming toward him in the other direction.  Well, I did not want to move until he was out of my way.  So he shouts, "Goddammit it!" and retreats to the safety of the sidewalk.  No bike lanes on this street.  Shame on the City of Sacramento.  My window is down, and I'm not proud of my actions, but I yelled at him to "learn how to ride!" which elicited this response:  "Suck my dick!"  So I saluted with my middle finger and yelled, "Suck THIS!" and drove on.  My adreneline was pumping and murderous fantasties were swirling in my brain.

No wonder the human race is always at war.

Friday, September 26, 2014


I'm spending time with my mother while dad is away on a business trip.  I always enjoy these down times with mom, she is chill to the max.  We hang out, read, watch t.v., eat food, cuddle with Luz, nap.  Today is shower day so I'll be the shower master and blow dry her hair into a nice 'do.'

She likes having me around.  This is a lovely and remarkable thing because, growing up, mom and I experienced a big disconnect.  She didn't 'get me' and I didn't get her.  Time, life, and challenges have brought us together, and now I am her favorite caregiver, though she probably says that to my dad and sisters as well!

When I help her move about, I am patient, and gentle, and affirming.  I encourage and praise when she gets from point A to point B.  No small task for her with Parkinsons.  Bloody Parkinsons.  I'm vastly different from my dad in that I don't require adherence to a strict schedule.  We go along as we wish and if lunch is at 2:30, well, it's at 2:30.

And, horror of horrors, pots and pans get washed in the DISHWASHER.  They come out clean without me having to stand over a hot soapy sink for 20 minutes, then towel dry the beasts.  When my husband drove dad to the airport the other morning, I called out, "We'll be fine!  And if we're not, you'll never know about it!"  Heartened, he was not.

I am grateful for these times with my mother.  I really like her company.  She's wry and she's smart.  And she loves my little dog.  It doesn't get better than that.

Have a lovely weekend, dear friends.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Moving Mountains

My husband took this photo of me yesterday, while we were at breakfast with the bike club.  It took some amount of effort on my part to get my butt out the door, but I did it by chanting something I learned in group therapy, "Do the opposite, do the opposite."  So when my grumpy old self whined, "I don't wanna go to breakfast!" I headed myself off at the pass.

And I'm glad I did.  We shopped at the Farmer's Market and picked up some excellent lamb, potatoes, pears, onions, a plum.  I used the slow cooker and made a delicious lamb stew that melted in our mouths at dinner time.

While the mister was busy busy busy taking care of business, I sat outside with my book, Mountains beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder, about Dr. Paul Farmer.  Farmer has dedicated his life to providing medical care, health education and improved living conditions to the poorest of the poor in Haiti.  It's inspirational, and a darned good read.  This man is motivation on steroids.  The book was listed on one of my friend's "favorite books" list, which is why I picked it up at the library.  And when I have little to no energy and want to stay quiet and small, it is a balm to read about good people in the world.  Add that to an afternoon nap on top of the down comforter with my little chihuahua breathing softly, the fragrant stew smells wafting through the house, and you've got a recipe for healing. 

Friday, September 19, 2014


Now Suzanne takes your hand
And she leads you to the river
She is wearing rags and feathers
From Salvation Army counters
And the sun pours down like honey
On our lady of the harbor
And she shows you where to look
Among the garbage and the flowers

There are heroes in the seaweed
There are children in the morning
And they will lean that way forever
While Suzanne holds the mirror
They are leaning out for love   ~L.Cohen

Italics, mine.  That nasty black dog came back this past week.  I'm leaving him outside as much as I can.  I pick roses while he snaps at my ankles, but still, I gather blooms for my home.  I hold on to all that is good and right in my world.  It's there, I know.  I have to reach a bit for it right now.  I need Suzanne to show me....

My friends and family are like an intricate hammock, holding me between the pines.  Cradling me, holding me up while I watch the dark branches sway ominously above my head.

Friday, September 12, 2014


Happy Friday, all!  We are home from a lovely, and cool, trip to the coast.  Morning headlines announce that triple digit heat wave will continue throughout the weekend.  I am sorely tempted to head back to the land of fog.

We both commented that it was grand to be out and about, hiking around, and not be overcome by the heat.  Blessed, blessed FOG.

I grew up on the California coast, spent most of my adult life there.  I know the flora and fauna, the smells, the weather patterns.  It was heaven to experience them all again.

I'll be returning next week, to be with my grandson, meet up with old friends, and go hiking with a Facebook friend.  Love those real live meetings with cyber pals...I have not been disappointed yet.

One day past our horrific national tragedy, I know I am lucky.  We are lucky.  I recently found out that a friend was actually supposed to be at a breakfast meeting in the towers, but had to take his daughter to her first day of school, and so missed being there.  Missed.  Being. There.  Can you imagine?

Many stories to tell from the trip, but I'll save them for later.  It was quite an experience, seeing places that I haven't seen for thirty years.  I highly recommend getting 'away,' if you can.  Puts a new spin on things.

For now, I wish you a lovely weekend.  Gracias a la vida, mis amigos.

Friday, September 5, 2014


Another Friday rolls around.  I just realized today is the one-month anniversary of our wedding.  Seems like it happened a long time ago...in a good way!  It feels as if I have always been with him.

A little over a month in the new house.  Framed art is up, towel racks and medicine cabinets installed.  Curtain rods, too.  Every installation required 2 trips to the hardware store.  We bitched and moaned (cursed, too) and laughed our way through it.  Road trips and home improvement projects are always a good test of a relationship.

I had the road trip from hell with a girlfriend a couple of years back.  It was dark and surreal, and had me wondering just the what in the world was going on -- what alternate universe had I stepped in to?  It was the beginning of the end of that love affair.  (Please, share your road trip horror story...I want to know that I'm not alone.)

How different my life with the mister is.  No drama.  Actual discussion and reasoned interaction.  Fun, good humor and the presumption of innocence.  (My trip from hell actually involved the GF having full length discussions between her and myself, but completely in her own mind.  Didn't share with me until she had worked herself into a frenzy.  It's like your partner and you are sleeping, they wake up from a tumultuous dream and are pissed off at you for what you did in their dream.)

Anywhoooo....we had a good week.  Endured hot, muggy night to listen to big band music at Central Park.  My daughter began teaching her seniors in high school this week and is ecstatic about it all.

Music in Central Park

The hummingbirds have found the feeder we installed just outside our office window.  I just saw two of them out there, but the scene is so back-lit that I didn't even attempt a photograph.  Our weekend is full - bike club breakfast, lunch with friends and hopefully a bike ride or two.

Here's wishing you a fabulous Friday and something fun to amuse and delight you!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Labor Day

From a friend of mine, "A shout out, a moment of silence, and heartfelt appreciation to all those who have gone before us to labor and unionize. Thanks for giving children a childhood rather than starting their lives in factories, fields and mines. Thanks for an 8 hour day, 40 hour week, vacation time, health benefits (for the lucky ones) pensions, a safe work environment and wages that made a strong middle class in our country. Labor is what makes the great parts of our country great and makes me proud to be an American."


  A friend is grieving the loss of her long time love and life partner.  It is wrenching, but she is remembering the good times, their trave...