Thursday, September 29, 2011

Beautiful, Wonderful, Magical Fall

I love the weather this time of year – and even more so this year, as we’re having “unusually high temps.” But, the “high” isn’t horrible – the highest was yesterday at 99 degrees. But 99 in the fall is much different than 99 in the summer, so it’s been really, REALLY pleasant.

The one part of fall that gets me down is the loss of light. Last night, it was dark by 7:30. As the light lessons, I feel the coming of winter.

The shortness of the winter days really gets to me. I find myself going to bed early, and feeling imprisoned by the darkness. I rarely venture out after the sun has gone down – and tear around like a mad woman on weekends to get all my errands done so I can be home before dark in the winter.

However, it’s not winter yet, and I have to admit I am loving fall.

I spend every spare moment I have outside, reading or just soaking up the rays. Sometimes I sit outside on my break, close my eyes, and delight in the sun.

A friend from work and I sometimes break together, but we’ve been having trouble coordinating our outdoor breaks – she yearns for the shade, I the sun. Sometimes we get lucky, and find a table with one chair in the shade (for her) and one in the sun (for me). But, that doesn’t happen until the afternoon – so my morning break has turned into my own, basking in the sun and dreading the winter.

It’s going to be an early winter – snow is already predicted for next week. Yes, alright, in the 8,000 elevation areas… but still, that’s close, and reminds me that winter will be here much too soon.

I’m not ready for it.

This summer went by really fast, and September blew past me like a race car driver. Where did it go? Was it really even here?

I hope October doesn’t go by as quickly.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Life is just so daily

I have a Mary Engelbreit mug with the above saying plastered on it. It's probably my favorite mug in the whole world.

Life REALLY is "just so daily."

It goes on and on, and things happen. The things pile up. Some good. Some bad. And time just keeps going and going and going... like the Energizer Bunny.

I guess I could look to see when the last time was I posted here, but I don't want to. I promised I would get better, and I didn't. I don't think I want a date looking me in the face, taunting me on how long it's been.

Here I am. Today. Sunday.

I don't even know where to begin. Work, perhaps. It sucks - I mean, really sucks. Not sucks in the way that things aren't simply going my way. Sucks in the big way - the way that has led me into my boss' office more times than I'd care to admit.

Me. The person who's almost never been in trouble ever before in my 40+ years of working - and here it's almost a daily thing.

Okay, I exaggerate. But give me that, okay? I'm not used to being in trouble.

Life... goes on. I get up, I put my clothes on, and I stumble out to the car to get to work. I've got a few friends, and we hang out. Sometimes. This year I haven't much felt like hanging out, but I do it sometimes just because I know I need it.

I've contemplated suicide several times this year. Not in the sense that I was going to do it - but in the sense that it seems inevitable that I will do it someday. Not tomorrow, not next month, not next year.

Some day.

This isn't a "gee I need some attention" statement. I don't. Believe me - I really don't. It's simply a realization that at the brink of 50, it became glaringly apparent why people get married and have kids. Build a family. Without that... what purpose does life have? Really? At 30 you can say you're still discovering life and reaching goals - and you are. At 40, you can say you're focusing on bettering yourself - and you are. At 50? At 60?... the circle of family and friends gets smaller and smaller. People die off. People move. Get sick. And you suddenly find yourself alone with no one that really cares if you live or die - and you realize it really doesn't matter if you do live - or die.

I'm not there yet. But, unless something changes, I imagine I will be there some day.

I'm not depressed - but I think I am stuck. I've been in survival mode for a long time, and I still can't see the light at the end of the tunnel.

I'm sure there is one. I'm just not close enough to see it yet.

But enough about that... I've been fostering kittens since about July. I'm on my third set. This current pair (brother and sister) are super timid. They pretty much live behind my toilet. I've never been around kittens with that much fear at such a young age. They are only about 5 weeks old.

I'm at my wit's end on how to help them.

I sat in the bathroom earlier today, and stayed there for about an hour. I read. I twirled a toy and made a clicking sound with my tongue (most of the cats I've been around have responded to that sound). Finally, the female came out... not close, but she came out. She had some food, and went back.

She's braver than her brother, for sure.

I've got them for two weeks before I turn them back in. I hope they become more trustworthy... I'm certainly not the cat whisperer, but I'd like to think I can help.

The truth is, maybe I can't.

I've been pondering what other type of volunteer work I can do. It's time to give back... it really is. Animals are my logical first choice... but what's my second? Food bank... maybe. Elderly people... maybe. Just not sure where to go and how to start.

I'm sure I'll figure it out.

My dad visited a couple of times this summer. It was nice to have him here - and the house felt so empty after he left. It's just us left now. And if he dies, then it's just me... and I guess that's where some of my introspection comes from.

I have no family outside of him. What happens after he dies? To whom would I matter?

Depressing talk. Let's move to something else.

Marietta Vineyards has a wine that I like a lot - they simply call it Old Vine Red Lot ##. Right now they're on Lot 55. I discovered it at Lot 47. The taste doesn't change much from lot to lot. I still like it as much now as I did when I first discovered it.

But it's been a while since I had some - and so when I had a glass of Lot 55 the other day, and had a bunch of vivid, strange dreams that night, I didn't connect them to the wine. I simply thought, "Gee, you had a lot of strange dreams last night.

I had another glass (or two) the next night. Low and behold, I had a bunch more vividly strange dreams. Could it be the wine? Or was it simply the stress from work?

To test it out, I had a different wine for the next few nights (that is, if I had wine at all). No vivid dreams.

I went out and got another bottle of Lot 55. I had a glass, and promptly felt tired. I cleaned up, and went to bed.

I was overcome with a string of dreams - so strangely colorful and striking. When I woke up, I realized it WAS the wine.

How very strange. I have never had that with wine ever before... but this particular brand of wine hits me in the most peculiar way.

I'm thinking of saving my next bottle for Samhain (Halloween) and sharing it with my coven. It'll be interesting to see what kinds of dreams happen that night, when the veil between the worlds is the thinnest.

I think what I'm really hoping for is that one night my mom will come to me in a dream and tell me life is going to get better.

I really hope it will. Because of current events are any indication (shoot up at IHOP, deaths at the Air Races, and the Street Vibrations shooting - all within three weeks time), it doesn't seem like it is. I'd really like to know it will get better.

Wouldn't you?

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

The Truth about Nothing

Yesterday while eating breakfast at a local IHOP, several Nevadan military members were shot, along with at least one civilian. So far four people are dead.

The shooter? Dead as well – due to a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

As you can imagine, that was big news here in Nevada. It happened in Carson City, also known as our state capital. When I first heard the news, I was horrified.

Can you imagine meeting with your friends and/or family at the local IHOP, with nothing on your mind other than ordering those glorious potato pancakes, or a stack of decadent chocolate chip pancakes, and then all of a sudden realizing that a gun was going off and people were dropping left and right?

Some news reporters are calling it a “massacre.” By definition a massacre is “the act or an instance of killing a large number of humans indiscriminately and cruelly.” So, are four people dead a “large number”? I guess that’s subjective. If you spend all your time watching shoot ‘em ups on TV, then I guess four people seems like a small amount. But, if you lead a fairly insulated life, then yes, four people is a large amount.

As for me, I’m still wrapping my head around this. It’s horrifying to think that one minute you could be doing something so very innocent (like ordering breakfast), and the next minute be lying on the floor from a gunshot wound.

Some locals are stating that it’s incidents like this that should incite citizens to buy guns and get their CCWs. But I’m not convinced. One patron interviewed stated he was carrying a pistol – but that was no match against the altered AK-47 the shooter had. In the very little time he had to assess the situation, he decided against brandishing his pistol.

I can’t say I blame him. He would have had to figure out – very quickly – if he could take the guy out, if he had a clear shot, if he could grab the weapon before the shooter noticed… etc., etc., etc. And that’s a heck of a lot of information to figure out in a high pressure situation like that – heck, this guy wasn’t trained to make those sorts of decisions.

So… yes, carrying concealed might have its advantages in some situations, but not when faced with a lunatic unloading an AK-47 in a roomful of people.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about life and the end of life. This incident just put all my thoughts into overdrive. We like to think we have a tenacious grip on life, when in all actuality that’s more illusion than truth.

Life can be taken from us at any time – in any way. But instead of worrying about that, I suppose we should focus on the time we have left and make the most of that.

I’m trying. Perhaps I’m not succeeding, but I am most definitely trying.