Miscellany

To our posses

Last weekend marked a ladies to-do. We left our homes and plans—children left to the care of fathers—to gather together with friends both old and new.

We sat around a long table, eating crepes stuffed with cheese and apricot preserves, Nutella and strawberries, plum syrup and freshly whipped cream. We drank rich coffee brought from travels in Dubai and Singapore. We chatted and we remained silent; we laughed and we shed  tear; we encouraged one another in life and we encouraged one another in faith.

A few of us even went on a wee adventure to Table Rock. If you’ve no clue as to what I speak, Table Rock is a butte overlooking the city.

I’ve lived here all my life and this was the first time I’ve driven (rather than hiked) to the top. I had to rely on a friend nearly twenty years younger, who hails from California, to get us there. True story.

Anyway, see the yellow car? That’s the road . . .

If you want to call it a road. It’s more of a sandy incline with potholes the size of your head every five inches or so, just to keep things interesting.

Keep in mind, this photo was taken eye level near the top. It drops down from there.

We drove to allow time for a few brave souls to clamber down a bit and boulder climb. I’m sure it comes as no surprise, I was not of that number. I’ve a hard enough time on flat ground, thank you very much. Instead I perched atop the rocks, looked down, snapped a few photos, and otherwise took in a bit of the dessert beauty . . .

You know, anytime I roam about in a wide expanse of God’s creation, I can’t help but think of the first to do so. Can you imagine? Mile after mile of the unknown. Even when they found a place to settle, peril lurked at every turn. They had to give their all, every moment of every day; even then, it was ill-advised to go it alone.

Now that I mention, the same might be said of us. After all, we are traveling our own frontier. We’ve never been here before; there’s no going back.

If we truly want to succeed at this thing called life, it’s best we round up our posse, our tribe—our wagon train, as it were. We need to find those we can learn from and those we can teach; those who will love us for who we are and those who will encourage us to be all the better; those who will dance like a fool alongside us and cry as if the heartbreak were their own; those who will celebrate our victories and mourn our losses.

That doesn’t mean we have to cling to one another 24/7; because, let’s be serious, that’s an introvert’s worst nightmare. It’s my worst nightmare, if you’d care to know.

It simply means we have each other’s back—

To set one another up for success . . .

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To be there, in good times and in bad, when we’re “normal,” and when we’re a little weird . . .

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To know, whatever comes our way, we’re not in it alone.

And I quote

In other words

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Miscellany

As the weekend swoops in

Hello, there,

Can I just tell you how much I love this Hello Mister Magpie print by Jon Turner. He’s such a handsome bird.

Speaking of which, did you happen to see any of the articles about the Australian family that adopted a magpie? Oh yes, it’s true. The Blooms happened upon the orphan when she was just a few weeks old. They contacted the authorities, who admitted they’d have no choice but to put her down. So they adopted her. Today, Penguin the Magpie is just another member of the family.

Seriously, if you haven’t been introduced, you simply must (the photo of Penguin working out slays me). It’s such a welcome bit of happiness, amid the continued devastation of this week’s news feed.

And now, for the weekend—

Wherever you may roam, whatever you may do, I hope you’ll find a soft spot on which to land.

xo

Miscellany

The wisdom of our elders

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I worked for a family foundation first thing out of college.

When I applied, it seemed something of a dream job: working toward a better world, with lovely people, in a spectacular setting.

That last part, truly. The building boasted floor to ceiling windows that looked out over the greenbelt. Light and roomy cubes lined the sides; an immense rock pond and fountains graced the center, with boulders and greenery interspersed throughout. It was like being out of doors, in.

Even now it seems a miracle I landed the job. After all, as I left the interview, listening ever so attentively to the woman who would become my boss, I managed to run into a rather substantial pillar. The sound reverberated throughout the floor; and there I leaned, arms wrapped, cheek to cement against the pillar.

Ever the graceful one.

Still, I got the job. And from my first day there, of all the people I met, one person stood out. Josephine, or “Jo” as we called her, was an older, heavyset Polish lady with hair as black as night and lips the color of chili peppers.

She was fiery, too. She did not abide by tomfoolery of any sort—including sickness. You always knew when someone had the nerve to come into the office sick, because you’d walk up to the reception area in a dense fog. The poor sick sot would barely make his way out the door before she would break out the Lysol can and spray for all she was worth.

She claimed her strict adherence to Lysol fumigation was the reason she had not been sick for forty years. We were dubious.

Funny thing, I managed to pick up that rather spectacular virus going around. At the beginning of week two—shortly after being thrown into the coughing/gagging fit that propelled our executive assistant to check and make sure I was going to live, thus granting me the green light to work from home—I made a pit stop, for Lysol spray. Not only that, but I purchased the two-for-one pack. Then I went home and proceeded to spray the house and everything in it as if my life depended on it, because, well, you just never know.

Isn’t it interesting how the very thing that seems so ridiculous when we’re younger, mysteriously wises up when we’re older.

Granted, my spraying technique does not have quite the substance as Jo’s.

But perhaps that too will come with time.

And I quote

In other words

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