Sunday, February 26, 2017

Good As New

I'll tell you something about what you see on the left here. It's a knitting scissors now falling apart. It's beyond help or repair. Besides it's covered in white paint from a long forgotten project. It bites back at me every time I try to use it.

BUT I keep it in a jar beside my knitting table.

In my knitting basket there are two fairly new scissors but they hide under balls and hanks of wool.

The yellowish one up there I use, well, sorry, use is a fairly strong term.

I haul it out and hack at yarn that needs to be cut or packages that need opening or at loose threads. The points on it are worn off, saying it has dull edges would be a euphemism.

Hack. Because the effing thing doesn't work. At all.

But I keep trying. I have perfectly wonderful scissors up in the craft room and under aforesaid wool in the knitting basket.

And then, when all the above fails after an intense workout by me, I hunt for a working scissors.

See, there's life in Old Yeller.

If only I could find it.

(Similar stories, anyone?)

And gawd, it's painful, but I'm tossing OY today.

Friday, February 24, 2017

I Tweet, Therefore I am.

Of course I also fill my days with other stuff. I tweet when I'm mad or am amused. Today I was amused at the puffins, they are such incredible birds. I'm always nervous when they take off, they never look as if they're going to quite make it. But they do. They wobble crazily into the sky and can't be bothered building nests. They just dig a hole any old where.

I tweeted about City Hall here hosting an all-hail to prostitution sex workers. Simple question of them: special shrine to pimps and johns and trafficked women and girls? Not to mention all the thousands and thousands of murdered and missing victims? I suppose the councillors want their daughters/sons growing up to be involved in the sex trade? Have they ever known exited sex workers? I have.

I took a picture of my fireside table. You can't see the daily journal and my Tao meditation book which grounds me every morning. You can see my knitting. I could be working on a larger unfinished project but I'm not. Just these pretty little (fast) cloths in a sunburst of colours.

I have big news but I'm holding on to it for a while. I never know who reads this and I have to impart news to beloveds first. It's good, it's great, it's wonderful.

We broadcasted a shout out for my young friend who's moving into her very first home by her very own self, asking for household goods.

And my gawd, she is completely furnished from her cutlery to her bed to toilet paper and cleaners. Not a thing to be bought. People's generosity makes me cry in gratitude. She is overwhelmed.

And that's the really good news of the day.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Letting Go

A long time ago I wrote about this topic. About life being a series of letting go steps if we are to attain any degree of serenity and peace.

As we do, I forgot about this great philosophy for a while.


And letting go is ceasing to struggle. Verily.

And it was brought home to me by a friend on Thursday. As he talked of letting go of who he was, his balding head reminds him, his lack of flexibility, his achy back, his paunch.

As I climb on my new-to-me gift of a treadmill every day I let go of dreams of another Tely 10, road racing, snazzy running gear, nimble legs, endless energy. And have I mentioned I've always hated treadmills with a passion? Not anymore, for this may save my life.

I was cold, cold is a brand new thing to me, and I put on an Aran sweater over the tights and tee-shirt, threw on a sweatband. And laughed as I realized after an excruciating 15 minutes that there was no sweat and I wasn't warm enough to remove the sweater.

It's a huge process for us elders and for others physically challenged out of the blue or after an accident to confront an altered life, while trying not to sentimentalize or glorify the past. I hadn't realized I was engaging in this magical thinking. Until my friend B talked of it.

And self-smack to the side of the head.

I better embrace the changes, work with them and yes, celebrate them.

Even if it's only for those who can't, ever again.

Saturday, February 11, 2017


I'll tell you: I'm taking a well-earned break right now.

When I put word out on FB (I think I mentioned before that FB is quite different out on this thinly populated enormous island on the East Coast) that I needed a treadmill, cheap, and helpers and a truck to drive it here when I found one, the community got busy. A woman 50k away that I met once or twice, had a son living in the other direction from me who had a treadmill he'd never used, top of the line she thought, built in TV (?), and he was giving it away. Then I heard from two friends who had the means and transportation to pick it up tomorrow and cart it into my house and set it up.

All fine and dandy, right? Except my office is the worst nightmare in my house with so little uncovered floor space as to make you tiptoe in gently, or in Grandgirl's case when she was here and looking for my unused eReader, to shake her head at me and say: "Seriously, Grandma?" To the absolute astonishment of Daughter and I, she is a bit of a neat freak. Breaking the chain of generations of proud non-housekeeping women, 5 at last count.

There is only one spot for this treadmill and it's in aforesaid office. The only dump in my house. The rest of my house is pristine because of PGs so everything spare has been thrown in here. I was waiting for expiry dates on tax files, to finish sorting through old photos, 10,000 pens, pencils, markers to spontaneously combust, reference books to sort themselves and land on shelves, all my writing files (ye gads!) to bind themselves, annotate themselves and throw themselves into a lovely wood and glass cabinet purchased yonks ago for their usage.

I wouldn't let anybody at anything as, you know, valuable papers, old photos, all my sheet music since I was 6, and stuff: don't touch my stuff syndrome.

So there I was tonight. nearly in despair looking at that catchall six foot long side table that holds every piece of undealt-with crap of my life. Marking the exact and only spot where my new treadmill is going to sit.

And I put on my big girl knickers and I tackle everything on it, under it and around it. And I find Ansa's lost toys, which break my heart, and get everything out into the front hall, stacked. And resist the urge to go through old photos and letters and cards and files and my published stuff.

And I say to Grandgirl via text as she is a fount of wisdom at 22: give me a good idea to get me on the effing magic treadmill when it arrives.

And she says: audio books and podcasts and Big Rule: they can only be played when you're on the treadmill. That way you have something to look forward to.

OK Legs.

We are going to regenerate you, a la tadpole.

Sorry about all those tears.

Sunday, February 05, 2017

Day Zero

I watch the seabirds flying close to the stormy bay, eyes alert for fish. I throw out some seed for the littler birds. It's cold and windy and bitter out here.

I've lost water in my house. Yesterday I lost the woodstove too. Leo sorted out the chimney for me so I have heat again. But the water? No idea what's going on. I turned off the pump. I do have a container to make coffee or soup.

I'd like someone to come and take care of me. The downside of living alone is when things go wrong. As they will. Or two or three things go wrong. And there's no one to worry-share.

It begs the question: How many of us are brave and stoic on the outside and crying in fear on the inside? How come the chin-up and chest-out manifesto is our fall back scenario?

Is life just a performance for most of us? Be brave, we're told since childhood, don't cry, this won't hurt a bit - the first Big Lie apart from Santa Claus.

In an odd way I found out how really brave and uncrying I have been.

"You've had this disease for at least 10 years," says my vascular surgeon, "And you've completed how many distant road races?"

"Seven, eight, nine?" I say.

"You must have been in terrible pain at the end of them all?"

"Yes, I was," I admit,"I felt like fainting."

"The vascular system in your legs from the knees down has deteriorated by 60%. The thing is I could surgically intervene, and the odds are not good, or you could work on creating an alternative vascular system in your legs. It' going to hurt like hell and there will be many tears but it can be done."

I'm too old for this shyte, I think. I'm tired. I'm not brave anymore.

And then so many are worse off than I. And I feel small and selfish.

"I'll see you in six months" he says, "But if you sustain an injury or notice blackness or bruising in your legs, you are to call me right away."

"Remember," he adds, "Forty-five minutes a day of brisk walking through the pain and tears. It can be done!"

They're not your effing legs and pain, I think meanly, as I smile at him, his father born in Mayo, his pin-striped 3 piece suit right out of Central Casting: Mr. Surgeon.

Can I do more pain?

And continue writing this shyte on a blog, when so many like me are giving up blogging?