Sunday, January 11, 2015

Let It Snow, Let It Snow

Throughout the U.S., even in Texas, the weather is bitter cold.  I am holed up in my apartment, unable to install an new ink cartridge in the printer David bought for me at Thanksgiving. Frustrating.

I want to write letters to various organizations to tell them to quit filling  my recycling bin with their pitiful pleas for money.  I am careful about how I spend my limited funds.  Mine go to Planned Parenthood, the ACLU, and the Texas Food Bank. I also want to write to the Texas Democratic Party to tell them they will not get any money from me as they are totally incompetent.  But without a printer, I can not send out any letters.  Maybe no one will read them anyway.

So I will write a blog.  I can post it without using the printer.  As I begin this new series of blogs I will continue to comment on current events, relating what is happening today to my memories and experiences.  Also, my son David also wants me to write family history to tell him what happened before he was born.

First, I will begin with what television news showed about the big storm up North.  I lived in Michigan and Illinois.  I remember many dreadful winters. 

The television showed pictures of trucks and cars wrecked in a huge pileup during a snow storm in Michigan.  When we lived in the Detroit suburbs, Wally used to travel that highway on business trips to Grand Rapids.  He was there when the state was buried in a sudden 12-inch blizzard.  Believing he could not get home that night, I gave the kids hot dogs for supper and settled down for a quiet evening.  At 7:00 p.m. Wally walked in the front door. 

He said, “I followed the snow plow all the way from Grand Rapids.  No problems until I got home.  The snow plot has tossed up a mountain of snow at the end of our driveway.  I just came in to get the shovel, so I can clear the drive and get the car off the street in front of our house.”   

My daughter and her family still live in the Chicago suburbs.  For work she rides the train into the Chicago Loop, then walks a quarter of mile to her office. 

“Why don’t you take a taxi?” I asked her. 
“Mom!” she said, “There is a long line waiting in the cold for a taxi.  I can walk across the Loop quicker than I could get a taxi.”

The high today in Chicago is 18 degrees.  Makes 35 degrees in Dallas seem balmy.  But don’t tell Texans it isn’t cold here.  Like many things in life, how we feel and react to things depends on our personal experiences.  If a person has never gone through a Northern winter, then 35 degrees feels bitter cold.

P.S.  Even though I know 35 degrees is not really cold, I am not going out today.  Why should I?  All I need is right here in the elegant retirement home where I live. 

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Choices, Choices

I make choices.  Things  I must do.  Things I ought to do.  Things I want to do.  Sometimes the choices are hard, especially when there is conflict between what I ought to do and what I want to do.  At times the best choice is to do nothing.

This morning the radio woke me at 6:50 a.m.  That gives me 10 minutes to before hauling myself out of bed at 7:00 to wash my face.   Three days a week I have no choice.  I must get up early to cook my two eggs and do chores before going to dialysis. 

Today was different.  I took off the CPAP.  (I sleep with that mask on my face because of sleep apnea.)   Then I pulled the covers up under my chin and listened to classical music coming from the radio on the dresser, letting my thoughts drift.  The radio played a Schumann symphony.  My daughter is Martha Schumann, but I found myself daydreaming about other things.  I was awake but lethargic.  I pulled myself out of bed at 8:30, then sat around drinking tea in my fleece robe until 10.  Finally showered and dressed by 11:00 

Why not?  For the first time in months, there was nothing I had to do today. 

It has been a hectic time.  Martha came for a week at Thanksgiving and brought all her family.  She drove down from Chicago to Dallas with sons Doug and Richard.  Husband Don and youngest son J. J. flew in and out in Don’s plane.  David and his son Adam came from California on commercial flights, which meant trips to Love Field to pick them up and take them back three days later. 

I enjoyed seeing all of them, but their visit left me exhausted.  I finally got the sheets washed and found most of the things that Martha put away when Karl arrived for Christmas.  We went to IKEA and I bought another bookcase, which he put together.  I am grateful that he is no longer angry for making him move out of my house (at age 50!), but he brings tension as soon as he walks in.

After committing myself to a publisher, I had a lot of work to do on  “Mama Goes to Paris.”  As of this week, my editor is sending me a sample of what the book will look like in print.

Today there was nothing I had to do.  I became a lazy old woman.  It is mid-afternoon and I have not made my bed.  Dirty dishes in the sink. It would take only two minutes to put them in the dishwasher.  I have not done it.  So?

At the retirement home where I live, we visit with each other at meals.  Otherwise, we respect each other’s privacy.  No one is likely to enter my apartment until the “housekeeper” comes to mess around with her feather duster next Tuesday.  The question: How long will I choose to look at the mess?

Choices, choices.  Never thought I would live to see the year 2015.  There is nothing I can do about terrorists in Paris or Republicans in Congress.  My New Year’s resolution is to post more blogs.  But Warning!  Instead, I may choose to sit in my recliner and watch Wheel of Fortune.
Today I relaxed.  What bliss!