It is spring! Tulip are on parade. I’ve changed to capris and flip-flops. Around town the Redbud trees are in bloom. They are my favorite spring trees. I “saw” them for the first time as I drove from Bloomington to Indianapolis for my first post-law school job which (as a classmates reminds me on Facebook today) was 26 years ago. I planted a Redbud in my Indianapolis garden and though there is no room to plant one now, I eagerly await their blooming every year. Continue reading
Sometime in February, I decided that we would be going to Australia this summer. I have both a friend and cousins in Sydney. I nailed down timing—Julia’s spring extracurricular, the Penguin Project, has a closing night of June 24. Cheer (crossing my fingers that the new coach will allow Julia on the team) begins around August 1. With those date in mind, I bought Quantas tickets in the middle of March. Unfortunately, I bought them two weeks before a sale and paid a few hundred bucks more, proving that there is no way to insure the best price for plane tickets. There is a recommended time frame in which to buy international tickets and I was right there. I had seen a sale around Christmas but I wasn’t ready to commit. There was no way of knowing that Quantas would have another sale. I wonder if a travel agent could have done better? Continue reading
The cleaners were here this morning. When they come to clean, I retreat to a coffee shop, indulge in breakfast and latte, and plan a day. Then, I library-ed, paying a fine before taking out paper books and books on CD. Two travel books on Australia, another Percy Jackson for Julia, an Annie Lamont and some memoir for me. Then, home again for my regular round.
The near-daily round was instituted to get me writing daily—Italian practice, fiction and spiritual reading, meditation, gratitude journal. I give myself credit for house work and Julia related email. All in warm up for some pretty awful first draft fiction. <Gulp> I accept the awfulness and keep going. Day after day. Every so often I look back and find a word, a phrase, once a sentence that could be included in a second draft. Oh, I have so much ability to produce dreck. Continue reading
Ringing in a new year in what might be considered the most classic, but for me the least characteristic way—on a crowded dance floor gyrating with a throng of strangers in party hats and noise makers to a band playing the ancient music covered by high school bands in the late 60’s (no complaints about the music. It was very delightful). Before the parties heated up, Cheshire and I walked around an upper deck in the cool night air. A few stars were out, we could watch the quiet dark sea and the wake made by our boat. It was my favorite part of the evening, perhaps of the cruise. Minutes before midnight, we joined the throng dancing. Twenty seconds before midnight we began counting down as if this was a novel experience. At midnight, music played, people cheered, hugged and kissed, balloons, streamers and confetti fell from 10 floors above. In a minute, we we stood knee deep in balloons and streamers. It was almost strangely satisfying. It was as I had always imagined. Continue reading
We embarked on Thursday. Our hotel was less than 1.5 miles from the dock and so we arrived by foot, each of us with back pack and pulling our carry on bag. Once again, Autism on the Seas met us at the first check in point and moved us through lines and crowds. There is something wonderfully familiar and comfortable about this cruise. The ship is not configured in the same way but most of the same elements are there, the mental maps are so much easier. Julia and I were at ease much sooner and we were able to clue Cheshire in.
It is great having Cheshire with us. A second person to interact with and boss Julia around, a lovely companion for me to enjoy. Last cruise, julia and I had a wheel chair accessible cabin. We booked late and some of those rooms had been released. Our cabin this time is standard and a lot narrower. We have a window and not a balcony. I miss the ability to be outside immediately and the balcony provides a few extra feet but we manage the tight space well. I do find myself constantly straightening and putting away out stuff. Clutter happens fast.
Sunrise over water- a bay?- in Tampa. Not an extraordinary feat consider how little day light there is this time of year. A hotel on the water, the convention center, cars and trucks dot the visible highways and a lone kayaker paddles across the bay. Something nicely propitious about the sighting. We are in the tourist center, our driver from last night told us. Continue reading
A reminder pops up on my laptop from Calendar: Christmas Eve. Obviously, Apple’s Calendar is not able to look around this house. Yet. Something to be grateful for in a small way.
Facebook reminds me of all those past Christmas Eve postings—parts of cards, pictures in NYC with Cheshire and Julia, silly pictures of Cheshire’s friends here to support her through rough times, pictures of Julia in full Hogwarts regalia in Florida at the Wizarding World during our Christmas with the Mahoney’s (without our favorite Mahoney’s), trees and stockings and kind Santas who listened to Julia’s sometimes incoherent rambling wish lists. One post from December 24, 2010, offers the beginning of what has been seven years of strained celebrations:
Julia and I are bedded down in Brooklyn. We are remaking Christmas. In a few years it will be ours again. Peace and love to my facebook comrades. Hug your partners and parents and friends and kids while they are close.
The wind has been howling for 27 hours sweeping away the last unseasonable warmth of the year. The sun is brighter today than midsummer and shinning in unusual windows at unexpected angles. The barometric pressure is . . . all over the place(?). Snow by the end of the week.
I usually blame early winter decorations and Christmas music on Julia’s desires. This year I take some credit. Daily news is an assault on the democratic principle I believe in. Not just democracy–greed and cruelty are on the rise, spearheaded by a Republican party that has been highjacked by the the worst of humanity. The lyrics from Cool, Cool Considerate Men from the musical 1776, repeat in my head over and over through the ever increasing disgusting trump news cycles:
Well, perhaps [there are not enough men of property in America to dictate policy]. But don’t forget that most men with nothing would rather protect the possibility of becoming rich than face the reality of being poor.
And that is why they will follow us!
To the right, ever to the right
Never to the left, forever to the right.
Three days home and feeling a bit more human. The end of our summer travels were crazy mainly because I fell prey to a nasty flu bug the Tuesday of our Camp Awesum week and spent the rest of the week sleeping as much as I could. We did not get to do some of my favorite things, especially walking the labyrinth, being out on the water in some sort of boat, and doing the night hike. Julia, however, did get to indulge in most of her favorite activities and generally had a good time.