Just like that, yesterday’s sun left us. I woke to grey misty skies. The air is heavy and humid, smelling much like a wet Sheba. I had decided last night I would give up my exercise class for this week. I was feeling the fatigue of the heat. I am getting enough exercise running after Sheba and tending the garden. There’s no point in over stressing myself. Our aging bodies are not as efficient at regulating body temperature as when we were younger.

The thunder and lightning storm was no surprise. It was a lot of noise and show but it was short lived. Sheba and I still did a short walk with our umbrella. The rain cooled the streets and sidewalks. The smell of wet cement and asphalt was not pleasant. It made me wonder when did we get to be a concrete jungle. Oh, life in the city. I hear Joni Mitchell singing, Big Yellow Taxi. She wrote that in 1970 when she was 27. She certainly saw things clearly. Wish I was that observant.

They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
With a pink hotel, a boutique
And a swinging hot spot
Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got
‘Till it’s gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

That was this morning. Now it is after 4 pm. Just as quickly the sun, heat and humidity is back. I was enjoying my lunch in the cool of the deck at noon. I was even thinking of a sweater or blanket then. Now I’m driven indoors by the heat. I’m feeling a tad blue despite the brilliant sunshine. That, of course, makes it worse. I know that it’s due to the fluctuating weather and temperature. Still it leaves me with a feeling of failure, inadequacy and whatnot. The air is heavy, still with a faint wet dog odour.

It is not Sheba, either, though it would be easy to blame her. She’s freshly laundered 2 days ago. She’s still sweet smelling and shedding her now fluffy fur. We’ve had 2 days of brushing now. First one side one day, then the other the next. She’s looking almost sleek now. I am glad that I’ve done that before my mood dip and my energy with it. I’ll see if I can talk myself out of it.

Talking to myself is not always effective or good when I’m feeling low. I end up ruminating on the wrong things, things that probably have no validity. I opted to get up and do something, like making supper. I wandered out to harvest some veggies from the raised beds. The raspberries needed picking, too. Then why don’t I trim the grass. It’s getting long. It didn’t take long. I thought maybe I should fill the beds with water. It’s been awhile since the last time and the top soil felt dry. I amazed myself at how much I got done once started.

No sooner had I got inside, the sun disappeared and thunder started rumbling in the air. The house was encased in gloom. Ah! I am really sensitive to the weather. I’m not using it as an excuse for my moods at all. The wind blew and the rain came pouring down. No climate change, eh? My supper was later than I planned. Then I discovered my fridge didn’t feel cool at all. Investigation, tossing, cleaning and defrosting the little freezer on top all ensued. I hope it solved the problem till a new one could be bought.

No surprise that it is late again. The dishes and stuff in the sink can wait. Sheba never got her afternoon walk. She’s ok. I’m ok. We’re getting wiser and more flexible as we age. Both of us.




I’ve never been comfortable in my own life. It never felt like it was mine. I’ve been living for others, not for myself. Nobody asked me to. Perhaps I received the message from the great collect. I absorbed it through osmosis through the years. And now, realizing that my years has a finite number, I’m having a lightbulb moment. Hey, this isn’t how it’s suppose to be! Where is my life, my legacy? I have no moments for my video of highlights. In this moment I can only think of compromises and good enoughs.

Still, sitting here, tapping away on this beautiful August morning, I’m pretty satisfied. I hear the caw caw of a crow. Sheba’s laying at my feet. It is warm. I have the laundry hanging on the racks – one on the deck and the other out in the yard. It is still relatively comfortable in the shade. But if you catch the sun bouncing off a surface, it is so hot. The earth is burning up. We are still here. It is good to be living in this moment in time. I hope there is time to rescue our planet. I hope there is time to live my own life.

I’m ruminating, chewing my cud, on what is truly of value to me. It’s a worthy subject to come back to, again and again. It’s a question that I’ve been unconsciously avoiding with all my busy doings. The chaos of summer drove me to seek counsel and wisdom. Its very nature demanded attention and action. I have often found much wisdom from Caroline Myss. Now days after her 9 day online retreat, I’m not all that much wiser.

I’m not wiser but I have taken the time off from my usual routine of do this, do that and do this again. I sat still and listen to the quiet. I fasted. I returned to the part of me that loved stilllness and doing nothing. In doing so, I realized how relentless I’ve become in ‘creating’, doing, exercising, so on and forth. I had a busy schedule in retirement. Life was a frenzy. Somehow that was okay. My mind and physical being were occupied. I didn’t have to think about the hard stuff – the uncertainties and anxieties. I was busy.

Being ‘busy’ and ‘creative’ gives legitimacy to being distracted and absent from my life. I didn’t smell the coffee or the flowers. I THOUGHT I did. I hadn’t tended my garden or myself regularly. I did it haphazardly, by gosh and darn – like everything I do. Now that I know better, I’ll try to do better. But it is difficult to break out of set patterns. Having an addictive personality doesn’t help. Already I want to sign up for another course given by Caroline Myss and Andrew Harvey on our shadow selves. It would not be a bad thing but it would be another thing I’ll be chasing, being distracted and busy.

I will resist, staying in the here and now. I have enough. I am enough. It is time to bring in the laundry. It is time to push the stove back in its place. It took something falling behind it for me to clean underneath. What alot of dust, grime and dog hair! Now it’s all swept, washed and dried. Good for another 10 years.



The best thing for me is not to dwell in the valley of doubt. I should just drive through –  looking at possible choices, decide and act. My mistake usually is going back, ruminating and flagellating myself. All that does is create agony and more time in the valley.  I better work on giving up the bad habit. Most things are not that important. Whatever I decide and do will be fine. Things have a way of working out. I have good self talk. I hope I listen to myself sometimes.

I am a little down in the mouth. I hope I don’t talk trash though I tend to when squished between a rock and a hard place. It never works. So the dog is barking her fool head off. The postman was at the door. Yelling at Sheba never works either, but still I try. Eventually she does shut up. Eh, life is full of barks and grunts.

You will have to excuse me a little. The weather is hampering my well being. Not to worry. I’m tapping myself out of my discomfort. I’m contrary to that belief that we should be happy and chirpy all the time. I am an exception to that rule. I hope that I do keep my grumpiness to myself. Let me know if I transgress.

What I hate about these episodes of irascibleness is loss of productivity and more chaos. But being a long time companion of my temperament, I have learned to make a few adjustments of behaviour. I try not to give in to my crankiness and behave badly. I aim for a quieter environment. I try not to talk so much, staying out of arguments. That could be difficult. In those cases, I stay away from social gatherings. I use those alone times for constructive activity. Cleaning house can be soothing.

Today, I’m mostly tired. My throat a little scratchy from coughing during the night. I struggled this morning with the decision of staying home or going out. Staying home won out but I did feel a little guilty. Those I should have been able…I would have felt better if…thoughts tumbled in my head for awhile. I kept them to myself, not voicing them outloud. It would have been more delicious if I just allow myself to feel my fatigue and rest.

You know that when you have a dog, you can’t call in sick for those walks. You will not get any rest. I killed two birds with one stone to save energy. I packed my furry princess in the car. We stopped first at the dog food store. $91.00. Small price to pay for a healthy fur baby. I think it lasts for a month at least. Next was the dog park close by. It was our first one where she learned there were other four legged creatures like herself. She was very timid on her first outing, hanging close to the fence. She soon got over it and ran with her buddies. Memories!

Letting her run off-leash in the park was much easier on me than walking on leash. We did two laps around, climbing the hill in the middle. Done and homeward bound.


I am myself again, ruminating and ranting. I find myself still dwelling over things I’ve said or shouldn’t have said. I see myself wringing and twisting my hands in my mind. Oh, I’m rude! I’ve hurt their feelings! Why couldn’t I have kept my mouth shut? But I’m talking back to this voice in my head. It doesn’t really matter! It’s only my obsessive over-inflated ego thinking what I say have any importance to anyone, especially to three learned professors. Just stop it!

I stopped the voice in my head. The thoughts echo and ricochet off  the edges of my mind. I sat back in my chair and sipped my decaf. It tasted pretty good with coconut milk. I travelled back to yesterday. The room was noisy with music and people chatter, the sounds of what Christmas luncheons are made of. Our salads arrived, then the pork tenderloin. They are making draws for door prizes. My name is called. I won 2 tickets to Persephone Theatre. Someone said that the play Treasure Island is very good. It is being held over.

I’m trying to drown out life’s miseries. They tend to come out and multiply with weddings, funerals and Christmases. I’m feeling very bah humbug this year. This feeling has been increasing each year. Now I’ve reached that crescendo – BAH HUMBUG! I’m exhausted listening to all the complaints of consumerism, blah, blah, blah. Complaints! Complaints! Complaints! And yet with all these complaint the practices are continued year after year. This year I’m stopping all that. I’ve stopped going to church because of all the bad stuff about religion. Now I’ve gone all the way. Now I’m truly brave.

Not that I’m feeling totally comfortable with my new bravery. I see certain looks on people’s faces after I’ve come out – those shifty eyes and uncertain careful voices. People betray alot with body language and facial expressions. I imagine I do, too. I can’t see myself but sometimes I catch my own reflection in others’ reaction. I could be happier if I was dumb and dumber. Ah, you can’t have everything in this world.

If you’ve caught a whisper of sarcasm and bitterness in my words, you got it. I am feeling that. It is my own sarcasm and bitterness, not directed at anyone else. There’s no harm in acknowledging my own feelings. The harm comes from holding them in and squishing them in my own body. There is nothing wrong with not celebrating Christmas. It is not a Chinese tradition though we’ve adopted it over the years. It’s truly a Charlie Brown kind of Christmas and not authenitically ours. I’ve felt like an imposter all these years.

If Christmas is about peace, goodwill and love towards all, I’m all for it. It should be celebrated every day. But do we need all the trappings? If you love ‘all that is Christmas’, it is okay with me, too. I have no objections to how others’ celebrate. I respect that. But the controversies and arguments about Christmas have killed some of that joy for me. That is not to say that I am a total joyless heathen. There is a tiny spark of hope for joy in me. I will bring out my own Bodhi tree. Sheba and I found it in the park last year. I had to fight her for it. There’s history here. It was already dead and no chopping down necessary. We didn’t pay any money for it either. Measuring up is not in our vocabulary.



RUMINATING – Day 96 in a year of…..

Day 96, October 28, 2016 @7:33 pm

img_8230Our October days continue to be grey and dreary.  But the solar panels are soldiering on, putting out some electricity.  I harvested probably the last of the rapini for lunch.  There is light and greenness amid all the gloom.  You can surmise that I don’t do well under the circumstances.  I might not be home free yet, but I think I’m past the most difficult stretch of days.

I’ve been ruminating about the past for the last few days, feeling regrets and sorrows about what could have been, if only I had.  My head and heart really hurt from all that.  And I have to let it all go.  There’s no shame really.  I am but human.  We are built to wonder, doubt, regret and mourn for what we think we have erred and lost.  It’s only right that I do acknowledge those feelings.  But then to let them go.

In this year of trying to do different, I am keener of the tricks of life, of my and others foibles.  I am trying to learn to be let go a little more, to be kinder to myself and others.  I am trying to learn about forgiveness – what is it and is it possible. Difficult tasks but at least I have them in my awareness.  I am not sleep walking through my journey.


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My heart likes to do tricks in the morning.  I pay it no attention.  Let it do the fast elevator down.  It’s trying to grab and trick me into excitement.  I might be a slow learner, but I’m onto it now.  Though I like to dawdle in the warmth of my bed, I rise and greet the day.  It is still dark at 7 o’clock.

I smell fresh coffee perking.  The aroma is enough to satisfy me.  I know its tricks, too.  It is in cahoots with my heart, trying to get me going.  I make my Chai, strong and sweet.  I savour its spicyness.  It is enough.  My heart beats its regular rhythm – no more elevator rides.  It’s best not to think too much, to analyze and figure out the why of everything.  It’s not always wise to get to the bottom of things.  The bottom might fall out if you figure out all life’s riddles.

I have to leave things alone, let the mystery rest.  Quite often, there is no mystery or reason.  It just is.  I have found that difficult to accept.  I’m such a contradiction, you know.  I HAVE to know.  I HAVE to understand.  Why?  Why?  Why? is my lament.  I’m quite tired and worn out with my ceaseless ruminating.  Now, I’m trying to be more accepting of the universe.

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Yesterday, I stepped into Alice’s Wonderland for 15 minutes.  I attended her tea party with the March Hare, the Mad Hatter and the Dormouse.  The conversations were fascinating, remarkable and nonsensible.  As I listened, I heard familiarities to real live conversations I’ve had.  I recognized myself in Alice, always interrupting and demanding things to make sense.  Her whys were answered with why nots.  And indeed, why not?  You might as well figure out life’s riddles with a fiddle.

Less ruminating and thinking for me.  More doing and sweating.  Those are new goals for me this month.  No pain.  No gain.  I HAVE to heed my own words and PUSH forward, live life in the present lane – 15 minutes  at a time.  You can stand anything for 15 minutes, right?

You can travel a fair distance in 15 minutes even within the normal speed if you don’t dawdle, window shop or stop for coffee,  I am pleasantly surprised at how much I can write, tidy up and read in that short time.  Yesterday, I attended Alice’s tea party, met the King and Queen of Hearts and her whole troupe in that time.  It is not always how hard or long I push.  The key lies in my focus and steadfastness.

IMG00232Different ways work for different folks.  What works for me might not work for you.  You have to fiddle and solve your own riddles.  My songs and mantras make sense to me, but you will have to march to the beat of your own drum.  And that is a blessing.  Wouldn’t it be a dull world if there’s only one way, one tune, one beat?  There will be no sound with one hand clapping.  You have two of them.  Use them both and clap with ferver.  Clap with glee.

Don’t start a revolution.  Instead, create a solution.