Ahead Of The Rest

More than a discussion is needed. Questions posed must come with solutions. This has to change.

Be Sorry . . . Less

Buffalo shooting: what we know about the victims so far | New York | The Guardian

We’ve stopped counting all the losses.

There’s no reason to keep score at this point, considering how one tragedy bleeds seamlessly into the next. From Buffalo, New York to Orange County, California to some other town that is doomed to the same fate, real soon. To tell the truth about who we have become would be to admit defeat and that kind of self reflection ain’t in our DNA.

It’s been twenty-three years since Columbine introduced us to the future with a horror movie script that has become commonplace in 2022: The senseless carnage, all the warning signs left unheeded and the political war chests that cash in on the latest tragedy like vampires at the end of the world.

The reality of yet another lost day is that too many people have stopped pretending to give a damn. The media treats each new mass shooting like a severe weather…

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Soul Swell, Frolicking Fée, Marvellous Moon

I have so many plans.  Too bad I’m a lazy bum!  Was gonna write my WWP Saturday, then yesterday… but then the whole Blood Flower Moon Eclipse thing…  But first, let’s go back…

Thursday evening was girls’ night. A way long overdue girls’ night.  Okay, even if we had had one a couple months ago, I’d still feel it was overdue!  Our usual trio of Julie, Giselle and me was upped by one with Linda.  A very happy case of perfect timing.  As the weather was particularly clement (a good 27℃ (81℉)) at suppertime, we sat outside of La Louisiane, a Montreal Cajun-Creole eatery that we have frequented a number of times and which I suggested for our evening.  Ah man.  It wouldn’t matter where we eat because it’s all about the company but good food just adds to it, right?  Plus, Linda had never been so we got to introduce her to the joint.  Linda and I arrived first and ordered drinks while we waited for the other two… which didn’t take long.

While we decided what to eat, we decided on a few appetizers:  hushpuppies, sweet potato fries and grilled corn bread.  Yeah.. um… Good stuff to absorb alcohol, right?

We then went for another round, this time with Cajun chicken wings, Gumbo – so more cornbread, beet and arugula salad, coconut beer battered shrimp.   Delicious. All of it.

Giselle was ready for sweets so she indulged in a chocolate pecan torte (which we all took a bit of).  However, we (Linda) felt we were still not done with the savoury and we ended up ordering some fried clams and crab cakes.

Lots of love, laughter and feel-good vibes were felt and must be repeated soon… Right, ladies?

Saturday morning I was supposed to run but the pool was in the shade and I thought that would be the best time to vacuum all the crap without me being cooked in the sun in the process.  And, after I had done half, my sister Tracy called saying she was going to the barn for just an hour or so to see Fée (pronounced Fay) and would I like to join.  She couldn’t ride her as she’d (Fée) had her vaccine so that’s why the visit would be shorter than usual.  Um. Yeah!  Plus, I promised Gigi from Rethinking Life that I would finally show her pictures of Fée.

Lemme tell you, I was rather glad it was to be a short visit.  It was hotter than Hades out there – 32℃ (90℉) to be standing around in the blazing sun.

Tracy went to get Fée to bring her into the little ring.  “She’s going to roll around in it.”  “Really?”  “Yep.”  And she did.  She ran around, going back and forth and then lay down and rolled.  Up again and then rolled again.  It was quite the sight to see!

As mentioned in the intro, this post was late because I was going to attempt to capture the Full Blood Flower Moon and Eclipse.  And failed miserably.  I even went up onto my roof but my tripod is tired and my butt got wet and then the clouds came just when I capture a sliver of it… and not all that well, either.

I did have fun with my phone before, begging the clouds to please be nice and disperse, which they did, before completely taking over.

And the best of the worst with my camera.

Oh well, maybe next time!  If you really want to see some beautiful shots, check out Tim’s blog at Off Center & Not Even.  Outstanding, I say!

 

 

 

The Little Things – Friday Fictioneers

It’s Wednesday!  And that can mean many things.  Over here in blogland, it means the start of Friday Fictioneers (don’t ask, just know!) Rochelle has dragged, encouraged me to play by ever so sweetly asking me to use my photo.  How could I refuse?  More importantly, why would I?  Should you feel so encouraged, please do add your link to your 100-word story by clicking on the frog below.  G’head. I dare you!

Frog with rose Royalty Free Vector Image - VectorStock

G’head! Click to play!

It doesn’t take much, you know. To be made to feel more than, rather than less than, or worse, inconsequential.  Sure, the big things are nice and all but in the grand scheme of things, those things are just accumulated stuff.  Some stuff you really enjoy. Some you don’t know why the hell you keep except for some misguided sense of obligation.  And, if you are not careful, you lose sight of the things you love most amidst said stuff.

It might be cliché but actions do speak louder.  Small ones.  Big ones.  Ones that make sense only to you.

Weekend Writing Prompt #257 – Luminous

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.  Thank you, always, to Sammi, for hosting this weekly party.

I had me an hour to kill in Miami.  Figured it would be a good time to get in a 30-word post.  Wrote it out and then my photos would not upload.  Had to shut down to board.  Arrived in La Guardia, had me an overpriced okay burger with a cold one and got comfy to “finish” my post. Ummm. What post? D’youse guys remember last August when I wrote a whole post (way more than thirty words), lost it and re-wrote it?  Well. Shit. I’m gonna convince myself that this one is better than that one 😉

wk 257 luminous

Portuguese Man O’ War

Like a child’s balloon

Drifting… aimlessly?

at the whim of the waves

Luminous in the Miami sun

from sea to sand

Resist the urge to touch

Painful price to pay

 

 

 

 

 

Was, But No Longer; Stuck With Me & Unanswerable

A couple days ago, I read one of Bill’s poems.  He’s over there doing NaPoWriMo and this particular challenge asked him to answer the following:

  1. someone I was close to, but I am no longer,
  2. a job I no longer do, and
  3. art that I saw once and that stuck with me.
  4. I was to close the poem with an unanswerable question.

I told him that sounded like something I would like to try as a few things came to mind.  He challenged me to do it.  As I am sitting in Miami Airport waiting for my beau’s plane to land – three hour wait, thank you very much, what better time than now?  Hope my charge lasts as I cannot find a place to plug in!

Before and After

Pots and pots of tea; game after game of Rummy 500; smoking Belvedere Extra Light
We took over the dance floor, breaking only to sip our one Zombie that lasted all night
Love was found and a wedding ensued (I was your maid of honor), to boot
You had two kids and the marriage did crumble but we were there for each other, without a grumble
And then one day, I know now why, we drifted apart and before resolution, you went and died

Summer is the time, and drive-ins are a thing
Filling the popcorn, and cash register pings
How many times can you see the same scene?
E.T. hides in the closet and then Gertie screams
A lifetime ago, I do not regret
Go back there one’s more? I’d have to say no.

Pictures can’t do him justice; they could never come close
To see him in person; c’est pas la même chose
How can a slab of marble be so beautifully sculpted?
Michelangelo’s David is a marvel undoubted
As I stood in awe, marvelling at this work of art
I couldn’t help feeling an ache in my heart

All these things we experience make up who we are.
How would I have been any different if any of these
never came to be or happened at another phase of my life?
Would I appreciate my life any less?

 

Acceptance is Healthy – Friday Fictioneers

Hey! Hey! Hey!  Looky here!  Rochelle found a way to kick me into gear and get me to Friday Fictioneer with my Friends.  Pretty sneaky, you ask me.  But then again, I have been away for eons… Nice to be back to play with you.  If you want to play with us, just click on the sunbathing frog below and add your linky-link to your 100-word story!

Frog in a long-chair stock illustration. Illustration of relax - 2574345

Click to partake

 

You gonna set up a table, too?

Maybe.

Why the hell don’t you set up on the walkway. You know, where there is NO snow?

Feeling whimsical.

You’re nuts.

That too. Plus you know how much I hate when there is snow at my birthday.

And your point is?

Hate is not good for your health. I have to embrace it.  So, I’m sunbathing.

For f—

Language!  What’s it to you anyway?

Feeling left out.

Why’s that?

Only one chair. You didn’t invite me.

You just mocked me!

Changed my mind. Whimsy is good.

Grab another chair, then.

On it!

Back in the Saddle Again

Three weeks.  Three. Whole. Weeks.

I just want all o’ y’all to know I am not belly-aching. Nor whining. Nor whinging.  Nor any other -ing that means the same difference.  Just statin’ the facts, y’hear?  Took me a whole damn three weeks to shake this thing (and I still have a little frog in my throat) but have decided enough was enough.

Today was (is?) the day that I put my lungs to the test! The only thing I had to decide was do I do 20, 25 or 30 minutes?  I promised myself to go slow and if there was anything whatsoever that didn’t feel right, I was going to walk it. Hell, I even brought my ear buds so I could continue listening to “Beloved” by Toni Morrison (such beautiful writing but… what? Anyway.)

The morning had started off with dark skies and rain but by noon, blue skies and puffy clouds and sunshine.  So nice. So inviting and enticing. So perfect.

I set my running app to “run”, my timer to 16 minutes (so I know when to turn around) and started my Tabata timer, choosing the 10 sets of run/walk, for a total of 30:25 and off I went.   I made sure I kept my pace slow and steady.  1:45 minutes of running, 1:00 of walking. Since I am reading “Breath” by James Nestor, I and have been practicing nose breathing.  Oy. Not so easy when running but something I can see improving with time.

The temps were perfect and the wind was lightly gusting, but not enough to bother me.  I put up my hood when it was a bit more chilly than I liked but other than that? Really nice.  I was even able to run through my little park, the mud being minimal. A robin added with a trill of encouragement!

I had barely reached my destination park when my halfway timer went off.  At that point, I decided to make my wall all the way to my discovered path and walk my way back.  So glad I did.

Walking back, I remembered I had my ear buds and turned on my book.  I was in no rush and it felt so good to just be out in the sun without a huge coat.

Of course, I had to take a photo of “my” willow 😉

In all, a distance of 6.7 km (4.15 miles) were run/walked and it felt great.

I got home and not half an hour later?

Talk about great timing!

I was going to end with a poem or response to a prompt like I did last week but hey, look at the time! It’s almost 10:00 p.m. Tomorrow is my first day at my new job.  I need to rest!

Have a fantabulous night, folks (and Monday)! And thanks for sticking with me.

 

Stuff and Things and an Update

It’s been three weeks since I last wrote a post.  Oh, there are quite a few drafts with great intentions and little else but other than that? Zip.  The first week, I was basically sans motivation, feeling some sort of ennui, no, not ennui, more of a malaise of sorts.  At the same time, I was actively looking for a job which I’m now thinking was causing more stress than I thought.

The result? My immune system must have been compromised and to celebrate the first day of spring, I got damn COVID. Thank you, son.  After being sick on arriving at work on Tuesday morning, March 15, Iain’s boss sent him home.  He slept all day and had a headache.  The next day, feeling fine, he went to get a test and sent me this picture with the text:

“noooooooooo”.

I respond with : “Fuuuuuuuuuuck”.

And he with:  “so weak. shameful performance” (must be said with Uncle Roger’s accent)

I showed the photo to my boss who said:  “Now you have to go home”.  I thought it was kind of ridiculous, being 4:00 p.m. with just one more hour to go.   Still. I packed my stuff and off home I went where I have been working since. Why, you ask? Technically I need quarantine for five days. Well, let me tell you why.  (Oh, and by the way, Iain took his required five days off and returned to work on Monday.)

Thursday and Friday, work from home.  I’m good with that, especially because I have two job interviews on Thursday afternoon and now I no longer need to find an excuse to leave the office for half an hour.

Friday, take a test – negative. So I am good to go for dinner at my buddy Linda’s for an overdue dinner and a chinwag. We are reasonable this time and I am home before midnight.

Saturday, go for a fantabulous 45-minute run/walk. I am feeling fantastic.

Sunday. Wake up sick.  Take a test:  negative.  Hmm.  Okay then, must be a head cold. Or a sinus thing because my head is ready to explode and my head is full of, well, let me leave that to your imagination.  I text my boss, apologizing for disturbing her on a Sunday evening and tell her that there is no way I can go in and that I am also taking a sick day.  I took three.

However, Monday, I was supposed to go for another interview – in-person, this time. I contact the placement agent and tell her no way can I go.  She asks me if I can do a Teams meet and I say, I think I can make it through one of those (rather sick but can manage to not cough or blow my nose for half an hour…)  I was supposed to, originally, go for a site visit with the people I interviewed with on Thursday but had to cancel that, obviously.

All is well. The Teams interview goes so well, they send me an offer!  Well, how do you like them apples?  Problem is, I cannot respond as the first one I had on Thursday really interests me and I cannot make a decision without going for the site visit. (Plus, I didn’t really want the one offered as it was, once again, a position obliging me to sit at the reception. Non merci.)

Random photo – Hanging with the cats

My agent asks me if I think I could go for a site visit on Wednesday morning.  I say yes (probably should not have but decisions need to be made!)  I make sure I touch no one and nothing and my mask remains in place.  They are just as welcoming as I felt during our original interview.  I thank them for the visit, ever anxious to get back home and into bed but wait!  I have yet another interview at noon!  Bloody hell.

The interview goes well but I have the feeling the potential boss is one of those hard-ass women who says (too often) how open her door is and how she arrives with a smile and leaves with one.  I have the distinct feeling of. Nope.  Which is fine and dandy because Clemex, the company I interviewed for on Thursday and visited that morning?  They make me an offer that surpasses the one I got on Monday. Woot!

I call my boss on Wednesday afternoon, after I got the offer and break the news to her.  She takes it well, is not surprised but is happy for me as she knows the company cannot really offer me anything challenging at the time.  I promise to her to try to update all the administrative documents so that the next person they hire has something to go on.

I work from home Thursday and Friday.  On Saturday, (it is now March 26), my sister invited me over to watch her daughter, my goddaughter, Ariane, play volleyball in the Canadian national championships.  However, she asks me to test myself again just in case.

I feel you, Omelette!

Dammit.  Positive.

So this past week I have been working from home, trying to train someone on some of my duties via Teams and wishing this persistent cough will just leave me the hell alone. As long as it’s present, I cannot go anywhere!

I now have my last three work days ahead of me, with a lunch planned for Wednesday and I don’t even know if I will be able to go in!  I have this frog in my throat with an occasional unproductive cough, still.

*** UDATE ***

Had to go to the pharmacy to pick up dye for my daughter today and decided to get myself a cough suppressant and a COVID test.

Great news!  I am now officially negative.

One last thing. I participate in a Facebook Photo Group and last week the theme was reflections.  I discovered this one taken last year and Wow! How had I not noticed this when I took it?  It’s what actually inspired me to write this post.  Well, the original plan was to simply use it as inspiration for a poem.  It is, after all, NaPoWriMo month, so why not a little poetry to end things?

 

Fighting through congestion

One thought begets another

A sleepless night, once again

Path has since cleared

With gratitude

Looking upwards and outwards

Where new beginnings

And challenges await

 

A Tangle of Sunflowers

A wonderful and important post from our Sorceress of the Cloth…

Any comments should be directed directly to Resa.  🙂

Art Gowns

Dahlings I love you all more than ever! It is with a heavy heart that I have postponed tonight’s fashion show. Instead, Art Gowns offers a Protest Post against all war anywhere, anytime.

The Sunflowers and colours are for Ukraine, and all its people fleeing, dying and defending. AGM Holly has written a special poem.

Thank you, Rene! I’m honoured to be here, and join in this protest.

“Hello, Art Director R. Budd here. We had a mind blowing show ready to go, then this beyond horrid war materialized. So, instead of the catwalk, the AGMs are out on the sidewalk protesting. PBH is MIA. There are reports that she has been spotted in Poland.”

“AGMs Dale and Gigi are working the protests in N. America.”

“AGMs Marina and Shey are working the lines in Europe.”

Peace and love! I’m Boogapony Holly. Ms. Rosso has asked me here tonight to…

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WWP #252 – Purport

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.  Interesting word Sammi has given us this week.  I could not resist.

wk 252 purport

I swear (often) it is the purpose of some to purport an image of an existence so far from their reality to be believed, I am left incredulous at their earnestness.

While they wax poetic upon their raison d’être, I cannot help but think this is the opposite of “they doth protest too much” but just as much of a lie.

Dating was exhausting.