December 31, 2016
This morning, I dreamed about eating peanut butter and strawberry jam on French country bread toast. I will have it tomorrow morning with a bottle of Prosecco: what better way to bring in the New Year? Oh, bacon. Maybe I'll have that, too. Um, bacon. I just took it out of the freezer.
When I got up, I flushed the black tank, did laundry, ironed, made appointments for the dogs to get groomed, made an eye exam appointment for me, picked out new frames online, registered with Suburban Propane so I can get a fill-up when I need one, found a masseuse, and I road my bike to Publix to get a few groceries. By doing all of my chores today, I can enjoy my dream meal as a complete indulgence. I may even watch a movie midday!
It was much warmer today but still considerably less humid. The wind shifted from the north at 18+ mph back to the south at 10-15mph. The ride home from Publix was a downwind sail. At four-thirty I walked down to Sherri’s site and asked her if she wanted to walk the park with me and the dogs. She did. People stopped us to talk to her and to talk to me about the dogs. People who have had Westies always tell me their dogs’ ages at and causes of death. And, they always get another Westie – like I did.
Sherri is going to the New Year's Eve party tonight at eight or eight-thirty. It's a BYOB affair that her friend (whose age I nailed) organized. I can't imagine, but if I went, I'd either have something to write about or I’d need therapy. Sherri said that I should do one of the poolside line-dancing affairs, but I said that I'd be uncomfortable as a “single” because I don't want to appear “available.” What if someone's husband asked me to dance? Ugh, I don't need that. I'm quite happy on my own, eating the food I've cooked, drinking box wine, and watching whichever "Lord of the Rings" trilogy episode is airing, in spite of the fact that Golum creeps me out.
Speaking of creeps, as I returned from Publix I followed creepy-dick-neighbor-guy in his car back into the park. If I had cranked it out I could have kept up with him assuming he didn't violate the 10mph speed limit, but he's a dick so he sped. When Sherri and I were walking the park we encountered dickhead and his wife leaving in their car. She smiled and he waved. I glared. He leaves his trash on my site every morning. I took his water jug to recycling when he left it beside his trash the other day. I hope he pulls out tomorrow. If I notice, I'll go outside and clap.
The visiting children and their parents have been leaving the park since yesterday. I have gotten a kick out of the 14-year-olds driving around the park in the grandparents' golf carts. I will miss that because I remember wanting to mow the lawn at 14 just so I could drive the John Deere riding mower. When I was a kid, I’d drive anything with a motor. I still will.
December 30, 2016
I started doing Sudoku and reading news articles at four forty-five this morning. Sometime after six, I fell asleep again. Often, when I dream at this time of the morning, my dreams center on me being groggy or falling asleep when I should be awake and doing things. Perhaps it's unconscious guilt for not getting out of bed. Who knows? This morning's dream was quite elaborate and it went something like this:
Kim and Kate are with me in BOB. They have a rental car which needs to be returned, and their own car needs to be picked up from a repair shop. They depart for home and ask me to take care of the cars. I had planned to decamp and drive south in BOB that day. The car rental place is northeast of me and the repair shop is northwest of me. If I drive the rental car back to the agency, how will I get back to BOB? How I am going to retrieve their car? (Clearly, in my dream there is no Enterprise-Rent-a-Car or Uber. Why didn't Kim and Kate take the rental car back when they left? What I am supposed to with their car once I retrieve it? I can't tow it.) Meanwhile, I have masses amounts laundry and dishes to do, and I can't seem to finish either. BOB then transforms into a park home of sorts. A former friend stops to say good-bye because I'm leaving town. (Where the hell am I?) We have coffee and I fall asleep at table while he's there. I wake and he leaves unceremoniously; as he's departing, he uncharacteristically fawns over neighbor's cat. I'm groggy can't seem to wake completely. Once again, I attend to the laundry and dishes which must be self-replicating because I can't make any headway. I still can't figure out what to do about the cars. It's getting late, so I decide to defer my departure until the next day. The next thing I know, I'm playing tennis with a guy I know from the jewelry industry. (We were only acquaintances and we never played tennis together.) I excuse myself and run from the court because remember the car problems. I go inside "BOB" and a woman I barely knew from business school is doing yoga. I'm nonplussed by her presence and she leaves shortly after I arrive. Somehow, Jean is there. Then my mother's sisters show up and rearrange the furniture as I knew they would. When they are finished I tell them I don't like what they have done and I ask them to put everything back. I get on a scooter and ride toward car rental place. I call while driving and the guy who answers says he'll pick up the car at seven that night.
I wake up and I'm really groggy like in the dream. Christ! Kim and Kate left their car in storage in Miami when they left BOB and me in Naples. They had offered the car to me, but I couldn't tow it, and I didn't want to commit to staying in one place until they returned to Florida at the end of January. I always have a lot of laundry to do when guests leave, but there are never any dirty dishes. Enterprise and Uber are both here: I always look for them when choosing destinations longer than a week. Sherri is trading out her Airstream for a park home next week, so perhaps that explains BOB's transmogrification. The former friend who came to say good-bye was someone I knew from the jewelry industry and we talked weekly. This summer, I realized I had made the last three calls to him so I stopped calling. He still hasn't called me (not even for my birthday), but he responded to a text I sent him in November. I can't explain the tennis game at all: my “tennis partner” left the jewelry industry and opened an optical shop; and, I want new glasses (from Ben Silver, not from him). I can't make any connections to the woman from business school other than her name is Jill as is Kim's sister. I am going to start doing P90X yoga next week. My aunts invited me to visit them in Ottawa when I return north. I thought of inviting them to Florida, but I want to maintain my solitude to focus on getting a job. Yesterday, I moved some "furniture" inside of BOB; also, I always have to move things when I have guests.
If I wake up at four forty-five tomorrow morning, I'm not going to go back to sleep: instead, I’m going to water board myself and confess to anything…everything.
Yesterday, when Sherri and I were walking on the beach, an ambulance –sirens blaring – went south on A1A. Sherri said that she hoped it wasn't going to our park. Right. When an ambulance comes here, it's not because someone's grandson has broken his arm skateboarding around the park. She said some of the residents chase the ambulances in their golf carts, following them to their destination sites. At first hearing, the thought of it was comical, but that dissipated immediately. She said that it happened when her husband went into cardiac arrest: people she hardly knew were gawking outside her trailer. An EMT had to tell a man to move away from the rear of the ambulance because he was violating the patient's HIPPA rights. What a rude, insensitive thing to do! Clearly, some people either have no decency or they are frighteningly ignorant. Wow.
I spent 20 minutes after stretching class talking to Beverly. She had been talking to some others before class started, and I learned that she had lived in Burlington, MA and worked for a semi-conductor factory. I had heard previously that she had grown up in Maine. We talked about the demise of the shoe, textile, jewelry, and semi-conductor factories in New England, and especially in the greater Boston area. We agreed that those jobs are never coming back, like those lost in the Rust Belt: the cost of the infrastructure re-investment and the lack of working-aged, skilled employees render the prospect impossible. She lamented that kids don't learn trades. I explained that the Europeans do it very well. I enjoyed our talk and think that she is a lovely person.
Beverly also told me that alcohol isn't a big problem here inasmuch as people don't create noise, wreak havoc, or otherwise terrorize the park. I said that I have noticed when I walk the dogs that a lot of people start cocktail hour at four. She said yes, "It's called Pour at Four,” and everyone goes home by five-thirty for dinner. If I eat dinner at seven tonight, that will be early for me.
I did P90X "Ab Ripper X" this morning and it was tough. The pulled hamstring was the least of my problems: I'm weak from not exercising, and the paraspinal muscles on my right side are very tight. “Western medicine Jean” suggested acupuncture or massage. I Googled providers and I'd have to unhook BOB to do that. There is a massage therapist within cycling distance, so I may try her. Jean also suggested the hot tub – which doesn't do anything for me – or a heating pad, which seems unbearable given that it's typically 70 degrees inside BOB at night.
December 29, 2016
Yesterday, I changed my work-out from intervals of free-weights and jumping rope to intervals of push-ups and other cardio exercises like jumping jacks and cross-overs. I didn't last very long. This morning, I was sore from the push-ups. When I'm fit I can do one-arm push-ups, so starting over is a kick in the balls. This morning I did the "Core Synergistics" P90X workout – well, what I could do of it. I did the entire 90-day P90X workout in the spring of 2011. It is grueling and time-consuming. From time-to-time since then, I have done several of the workouts as part of a more comprehensive exercise program. I don't have the equipment to do the 90-day program here now, but I have decided to use select routines as the mainstay of my workouts while I'm here. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays I'll do either "Ab X" or some of the 90-minute "Yoga X" after the stretching class, and on Tuesdays and Thursdays I'll cherry pick among the other routines to avoid injury and boredom. Maybe I'll stay here until March just to get fit. Unless I get a job.
I must have addressed over 80 postcards today for the second "Alligator" campaign. I paced myself and only ruined two cards. I ruined a little over 10% of the "Patagonia" cards probably by doing them under duress. I forced myself to stop: I ate half of my lunch and took the dogs for a spin around the block. Sherri saw me and asked if I wanted to go for a walk on the beach. Yes! I told her that I needed 15 minutes to finish walking the dogs and eating my lunch. We walked for about two hours. The beach is really quite nice and the water temperature is still above 70 degrees. Sherri told me more about her late husband (everyone must have loved him – I do, and I never met him), her son and daughter, their children, the place where she has a cottage, its local bears and famous guests, and a little bit about this park where she has been coming for 35 years. She has a wonderful life, her loss notwithstanding, but she and her husband made many lifetimes of memories together which most of us never get to experience. I rarely speak of my first husband, perhaps because the relationship was short-lived, but I have many fond memories of my second husband – things he said, things we did, etc. – and I still recount those happy stories to both mutual friends and those who never knew him. I am not a revisionist, and I am grateful for any pleasure I can take forward. Death ensures that no relationship survives, and divorce can preempt death. I will always relish a fun, shared experience with someone whether we parted through death, divorce, or another end of our time together.
The dogs get up in the morning when I open the Listerine bottle. It signals that my ablutions are finished, the coffee is made, I'm ready to give them "Puppy Love," then take them for their walk. Once they started feeling better, I began walking them using their check cords. The 20 feet-long cords give them a sense of freedom from me. I reel them in like fish when other dogs, bicycles, golf carts, or cars approach us. We can walk at a pretty good clip, save passers-by who want to talk to me or pet them (these are two different types of people). It is a far more pleasant experience to walk happy, healthy dogs a mile, than to walk unhappy, unhealthy dogs around the block. Addison even peed in grass today.
December 28, 2016
I went to "sunset" tonight with Sherri. Kids were stand-up paddle boarding in the Indian River. Someone said that there are no alligators in the river. Hmm, they’re in its tributaries. It bothered me how far offshore the kids paddled, that they weren’t wearing life-jackets, that the sun was setting, and that there was no means of rescuing them if they got into trouble. The river is easily two miles wide here, and it is part of the Intracoastal Waterway. Even if there aren't alligators, there are speeding boats and non-lethal wildlife which could hit or up-end them.
I have a healthy respect for water, a distrust of people operating motorized boats, and I recognize that I am not a great swimmer. I had a windsurfer when I was in college. Cayuga Lake is warm enough in the fall to swim, so I would windsurf in the afternoons during my senior year. I never went far from shore because there was no means of rescuing me if the weather either made the lake dangerous or if I exceeded my skills to tack back to the dock. Cayuga Lake is about three miles wide at Aurora, NY, and it is hundreds of feet deep. I learned to windsurf on its sister Finger Lake, Seneca, which, like Cayuga, is more than 40 miles long, but Seneca is 600 feet deep in places. I learned to windsurf on Seneca Lake on a board with a hollow aluminum mast which would fill with water every time I dropped it. I learned the limits of my strength and skills, I learned the power of the wind, and I learned these lessons in the company of adults who both windsurfed with me and had a motorboat with which to rescue me. I wonder what the relatives of these girls would have done to rescue them from the Indian River tonight if the need arose. I bet the thought never occurred to them.
Others joined us for sunset. One, a woman from New Jersey, I had met previously. It was our third of fourth meeting and this time she asked me questions: where did I live, where was I born, what did I do, and finally, how old am I? "Well, how old do you think I am?" I countered. She and Sherri guessed that I am between 38 and 42. Thank you. Then the woman from New Jersey asked me how old I think she is. I said 73. Bingo. Hmm. Embarrassing? Maybe. I told her that I had been consistently underestimating peoples' ages so now I add five to 10 years. (The truth is that she looks 73 – the sun will do that.) I don't think she was very happy that I guessed her age, regardless of my explanation.
My second, third, and fourth awkward moments of the evening occurred with a Dutch couple from Michigan who joined us. Because the husband has a German name, I guessed that they were German. Wrong! Austrian? Wrong! Swiss? Wrong! Dutch. Right, the accent is less guttural: awkward moment number two. We went on to have a discussion about regional US accents. I told her my father still sounds like he's from Philly although he left at 18. She mentioned a couple from Attleboro, MA – the town adjacent to the one in which I worked for the last year – who have accents that other Americans in the park can't understand. I explained that accent to her: if a word ends in a vowel, add an "r" and pronounce it; it the word ends in an "r", drop it. Then, I made an apropos joke about Frisians (as the Dutch and Germans do), and she said her husband is from Frisia: awkward moment number three. However, she said that the first time she met her husband's family, she asked him to ask them either to speak English or proper Dutch because she couldn't understand a word they said. My fourth awkward moment occurred when I said that I only know how to say one thing in Dutch. I told her that it is swearing, but she pressed me to say it: “God verdomme het.” It means “God damn it.” She glared at me.
I'll probably be stoned at sunset tomorrow. Or, fed to the non-existent alligators. As an encore, I’ll ask a fat woman when the baby is due.
I've amassed 220 names in 110 companies for my postcard mailing. All of the first round of cards are either mailed or addressed and stamped waiting for the holidays to be over to be posted. The two ensuing cards arrived yesterday. Tomorrow, I'll begin addressing the second round to those who have already received the first. There's a limit to how many cards I can do at a time because my hand starts to cramp. I also have a spastic reaction to writing the number five, so that fucks me up, too. It's especially bad when I have to write two fives in a row. I have the same problem with the number 16 when I'm counting workout exercises: I seem to skip from 15 to 17 habitually and inexplicably. I like the number 16: it's not prime, it's the square of four, one can drive at 16, so what's not to like? I could understand if I skipped 17 because I don't like prime numbers, but that never happens. It drives me crazy: 14, 15, 17, 17, 18, 19, 20, stop.
The dogs are back on full-metal-jacket dog food and their poops are OK. Phew! Tonight I walked them on their 20 feet check cords and we actually did a mile without a complaint from either of them. On our return, a woman stopped me to ask about the dogs. She then told me that she is the recreation director, mentioned the five o’clock chili dinner next week, and that the tickets for it will be sold on Friday morning. Uh, no thanks. The woman is perhaps the most tanned, most wrinkled woman I have ever seen. Prunes would be jealous of her sun-damaged folds. What is wrong with these people? OK, they didn't have sunblock when they were kids, but it's been around for 40+ years. These are the same people who gave up smoking: not in the late Sixties when it was first proclaimed to be carcinogenic, but just yesterday post cancer diagnosis. They've had at least that amount of time to give up the sun. Don’t they think they'll ever get skin cancer? Do they think their wrinkles and spots are attractive? I wish I were a dermatologist: I could mint a fortune here just scraping, clipping, and biopsying. Oy.
I saw one of the maintenance guys this morning when I rode my bike up to the office to mail some postcards. Yesterday, his crew cut my yard and that of my dickhead neighbor. I asked him is his guys complained about dog shit in either yard. He said no, but they have in the past, confirming my thesis that passers-by use these side-by-side rental properties as dog wastelands. I told the man about the creepy-dickhead experience I had with my neighbor the other night. He told me to be vigilant.
December 27, 2016
Last night when I took the dogs out for their pre-bedtime pee, my neighbor was standing by the left from tire of his Class A. He then accused me of letting my dogs shit all over my yard and his. He watched me pick Addison by her neck with her leash in order to try to get her to pee on the grass. She hates wet grass in particular, and she has grown to hate Florida grass because she gets burrs in her feet. She jumped off the grass. Jasper peed on it from the sidewalk. Not only is my neighbor a dick for the baseless accusation, he's also a creep for stalking me to have a confrontation: he must have been sitting in his dinette watching for me to emerge so he could verbally accost me. If he does it again, I call the police.
This morning, I decamped to run errands in Melbourne: USPS, Quest Diagnostics, PetSmart, SuperCuts, and Publix. I drive right and pass left. If I'm in the left lane and not passing, I'm going to make a left turn. This morning, I was in the right lane of US 192 eastbound when the right lane became a turning-only lane. If there was a warning, I didn't see it. I moved into the left lane at an angle because there was no room for me to pull through and straighten. The first car which passed me on the right had a mangled left from fender, and the driver shouted explicatives at me while giving me the finger aggressively. I think he over-reacted.
I hope I never have to go to Quest Diagnostics again. I was there for an hour and a half to get blood work. I checked in via their tablet, waited, waited, waited, was called to do the paperwork, then I waited, waited, waited. I have never spent so much time waiting to get blood work in my life. Quest must be extraordinarily inefficient or understaffed. I think the former. However, the initial waiting period was serendipitously delightful because I sat next to a Korean Police Conflict veteran. He (a white boy) grew up on a Mohawk reservation in Upstate New York and became an ironmonger. (Read about the Native Americans who built the Verrazano Bridge.) He told me all about his army experience – his respect for his fellow infantry men up and down the chain of command but his dislike of the army in general. His ironwork took him all over the US, and he built everything from bridges to buildings to a 2,000 feet tower without ever wearing a harness. I was sorry when his name was called (it's the same as a famous football coach!) because I could have listened to him all day. He is a lovely, happy man and I'm sure his five children adore him.
I parked BOB in the Home Depot plaza which also housed SuperCuts. I ate lunch and walked into the shop. I had to wait about 20 minutes, but that was fine – especially after my longer wait at Quest. I took with me pictures of Meg Ryan with a pixie and Diane Keaton with a layered bob. I told the stylist that I might like to get to Diane Keaton's look at some point, but perhaps Meg Ryan's pixie would be a means of getting there. The hair wash took too long and was not that pleasant. The haircut was mostly frightening: the girl cut fearlessly and with ferocity. The only way I would have lost more hair is if she buzz-cut me. Instead of Meg Ryan's long-layered, highly texturized pixie, I have Jamie Lee Curtis's cut without the grey, without the face, and without the body (not that I have Meg Ryan's or Diane Keaton's face, either). While I love the quality of my hair when it's longer, a pixie really suits my lifestyle, as well as my lack of girlie talents.
On my way home, I stopped at a local grocery store in Melbourne Beach because Publix sells Bota Box for $6 more than it. I bought every box of Malbec and Pinot Noir that the shop had. It's only a little over three miles from where BOB is parked, so I can get two boxes in my backpack if I run out of wine before my next BOB run.
December 26, 2016
The dogs didn't want to walk this morning, so I aborted our mile. Yesterday, and this morning, I encountered a "walker," a woman of 80-ish who walks three-and-a-half miles in the park every day. She walks at a pretty good pace, too. This morning she stopped me to introduce herself. When I told her my name she asked me to spell it. I should have said no. I should always say no, unless the asker either has familiarity with Gaelic or knows someone with my name. (The latter likes to show off by proving (or not) that she or he can spell it.) Once I spelled my name, the walker couldn't say it. Right. Common problem. Brain disconnect with Gaelic. I saw her again as I neared home, and she couldn't get my name right. Right.
I had planned to unhitch BOB to run errands on Wednesday, but I decided to go tomorrow instead. The stretching class and my workout afterwards take twice as much time as my solo workout, so tomorrow will give me an earlier start. I have to have blood work, get a haircut (I can take it any longer!), get dog food, buy groceries and wine, and go to the Post Office. My decision to go tomorrow probably has more to do with getting a haircut than anything else. Once I decide I need a haircut, I hate waiting for an appointment. Tomorrow will be my first SuperCuts experience.
I did some research yesterday morning on RV parks north of here on both coasts. I didn’t find anything I liked, and I don’t want to go to the Panhandle where it will be in the thirties at night. So, I re-upped for another month here. Now, I'm booked until February 15th. Sherri tried to get me a private rental which would be much less expensive, but the site was already booked. I haven't heard from the Naples park regarding my status on the waitlist, but as much as I liked the people there, the park isn't worth the extra expense. I miss the white ibises, but I have the ocean, river, herons, and pelicans here.
I spent five hours today researching contacts and addresses for another 40+ companies I like. I migrated my list from Apple's Numbers program to Microsoft's Excel because the list has become so large that I needed to manage it with the more sophisticated program. So many of the brands I like have been swallowed by larger entities, which is disheartening. So many sources of information are dated, like Bloomberg, and I have to do multiple searches to find what I hope is reliable information. What a pain in the ass.
Neither dog pooped this morning. Perhaps the ground beef and rice diet is completely assimilated.
I gave Jasper a normal portion of dry dog food with a little ground beef, and Addison got a little dry dog food with her ground beef and rice. We did the mile tonight and it took 50 minutes. Jasper had a soft poop 15 minutes into our walk, and Addison had one at 35 minutes into it. I repeated this morning's food servings again tonight. Tomorrow morning will prove or disprove my science.
Yesterday I ate a six inch piece of pepperoni over the course of three hours. I never ate dinner because I wasn't hungry. I told Jean that I'm not taking the other two sticks out of the freezer because if I do they'll be gone by the weekend. I'm having a real dinner tonight. Starting now.
December 25, 2016
I did laundry this morning because I figured I'd have no competition: I was right. As it was finishing, Sherri knocked on my door and asked if I'd like to walk on the beach again. We agreed to do so 30 to 60 minutes later. So, I folded the laundry, retrieved the towels from the dryer, and stuffed my pie hole with lunch. Like yesterday, we walked for nearly two hours. The beach is beautiful, and if I were a kid, I would have been swimming and sunbathing. As an adult, the water is too cold, and I have a no-tan policy. Many of the residents here have major sun-related skin damage which they make worse every year. And, today, I saw a twenty-something woman who has sun damage that I have only seen on people 50 years her senior.
Before Sherri knocked, I had planned on coloring my hair and drinking Prosecco. I deferred it until my return. I have to say that it's an excellent combination. Eating homemade pepperoni, cheese, snow peas, and carrots supports both, as does watching the second half of "A Christmas Story.” When you live in 180 square feet, you can color your hair, eat, drink, and watch TV at the same time without moving your head. Last night, the people with whom I formally worked initiated a group text about Christmas and the movie. Two of them are die-hard fans who can recite the lines because they identify with Ralphie's childhood, yet they are 18 years apart. I watched it last year for the first time because of them, but it didn't resonate with me. It still doesn't, but I understand its appeal. I think if I watched it with a devotee, I'd appreciate it more.
This morning while listening to Kurt Andersen's "Studio 360," I heard writer Oliver Butcher confess his love for the movie "Love Actually." OK, that is my Christmas movie! Other than "Band of Brothers" and The Civil War," it is the only DVD I own. I cry every time I watch it. Butcher explained his guilty pleasure and its beauty, including the Laura-Linney-character-hot-Karl-the-IT-guy failed hook up where she leaves him in an unconsummated bed to attend to her mentally ill, orphaned adult brother. Butcher said that she had to do it. I disagree! She's not his fucking mother! She's not responsible for his mental illness! It's not her fault that her parents left them orphaned. She should attempt to enjoy her own life unfettered by her sibling. She should have turned off her phone and fucked Karl and lived happily ever after. But if she had, we wouldn't have known her tragedy. And, Christmas, isn't Christmas without tragedy. Nothing merry about that.
We've all crossed bridges and driven on roads which are in memoriam for someone. I have always found that to be odd and discomforting. When I cross a bridge, drive a road, walk past a park bench, or, more recently, encounter a tree named for someone, I ask myself who was this person, and why is it important to recognize him or her? Why is it important that we recognize a minor state or local politician or someone whose heirs had enough money to commemorate something for the deceased? If I believed in the afterlife, I would be mortified that road or bridge had been built or a tree had been planted and a plaque placed beside either to tell strangers I had lived. It's a gravestone outside a cemetery, and I think cemeteries are one of the largest wastes of land of which mankind has conceived. Short of architectural wonders like the Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires, burying our contemporary dead seems wasteful. Commemorating the unremarkable seems silly. Have you ever Googled the name of an unfamiliar person whose bridge or road you crossed? No, you haven't. Because you don't care. No one does. So, why do we do it? Fuck, if I'm ever famous I hope someone names a garbage dump or waste water reclamation plant after me: at least people will get that I, like the place, stink, and that's a pertinent connection.
December 24, 2016
FaceBook told me that today is my mother's birthday. That's because my mother lies about her date of birth. She has done it for decades – since her twenties. It drives me crazy. She was born on December 23, 1938, but she tells people and agencies (like the DMV) that she was born December 24, 1939, a year and a day later. Shifting her date of birth to Christmas Eve has no explanation other than a desire for attention. It is obviously more "special" to be born on Christmas Eve, a holiday, than the 23rd of December, a date on which only frantic shopping and holiday meal preparation occurs. But, who I am to judge? My birthday is on the winter solstice (usually) – the longest night of the year – so I guess that really does make me “special.”
This morning, Sherri stopped by to ask me if I wanted to go to Publix with her. I was in the middle of something, so I asked her if she'd buy me a pound of lean ground beef for my sick dog. She said she would, and I gave her ten dollars. I then asked her if she wanted to go for a walk on the beach later today. We went a little after one. Sherri lost her husband nearly two years ago; adding to her grief, she also lost her mother, sister, and sister's husband within the same 24 month period. Sherri met her husband, Jack, when they were 17, they married at 24, and they were married for 47 years. She said that he always took care of everything, and that he always made her laugh. She said she couldn't stay mad at him about anything because of that. Sherri is sad and lonely, and there is nothing anyone can do to replace that man for her. Her grief is understandable and potentially irreversible. But, she is a lovely, otherwise happy person, and she will persevere because she is lovely and otherwise happy, because she has wonderful children, and because she has many friends who care about her.
Last night I turned off the "PBS Newshour" (which I listen to on WGBH radio via TuneIn) in order to watch "Raiders of the Lost Ark" on TV. The Friday night show is my favorite because David Brooks and Mark Shields review the week. As much as I value their insights, I haven't seen "Raiders" for years (it's not available to stream for free), so I cheated on them. Tonight, I’ll watch "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom." I love Indy: I want to be Indy.
Siobhan M. Knox
In May 2016, I bought a five ton, 25’ long Class C motorhome because I like to drive, I like to travel, and it’s more fun and less expensive than living in a hotel. No prior RV experience was required, and I had none: perfect. I’m writing a book about my adventures which will come to an end when I get a job. The dogs will be sad.