Over two years ago a good friend of mine was taken away from me. Bad choices or just stupid stuff, just the same he was gone. We wrote to each other on a regular basis and it would always put a smile on my face when I read one of his letters. It started to be normal, which is not the way a friendship survives, I still missed him so much, but it was bare able. Time passed and he was transferred to a closer location, which somehow made me feel better.
I still can't help thinking about when we met though, better times. The karate studio that we both began attending. Women and girls would talk about him and how cute he was, yet no one would ever say a word to the man. One day I just sat down next to him and began a conversation, that was in 2006. We became fast friends and spent time together, we went to karate competitions together, we traveled all over the place, once landing in Las Vegas, all I can say to that is "what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas". Even though we were years apart in age, we had so much in common. Sharing each others secrets and we could talk about virtually anything. There is something very special about our relationship that defies the normal thinking.
I remember going to karate competitions and the girls and women wondering if we were dating and the rumors were something that we encouraged and got a really good laugh out of. They would never believe that we were just great friends, we use to try to explain our relationship and in the end it was more fun to let them think what ever they wanted. He lovingly calls me "old lady", it makes me smile, since he is 18 years younger, I have nick names for him too, I call him my "boy toy". He is so good as a friend, always making me feel beautiful and special, we encourage each other every time we are together.
I am trying hard to understand kids these days. I am certain that we had kids like this when I was growing up, I am now convinced that there are many more defiant children than in my days of high school. They have no fear or respect for anyone.
Monica and I were driving home after work and as luck would have it, we got stuck behind a school bus. We always have so much to talk about so it didn't matter much. The teenagers began to slowly shuffle off the bus, obviously with no signs of urgency. As the bus closed the big stop signs and began to drive off, groups of children shuffled back into the road. I was patiently waiting for them to realize that I needed the roadway. I had no way of going around them, because I was stuck in one of those single lane traffic slow downs. The kids, about 20 of them continued walking in the travel lanes, I finally had to beep my horn. After a toot on the horn, most of the kids moved to the shoulder, except for a young man, who had something to prove.
I am usually very patient when it comes to driving. Sometimes people are looking for a street or are lost, but this kid was trying to prove that he was bigger than my Chevy 4WD. I then put my hand firmly on the horn and held it. Nothing!, this kid was not going to move, so I proceeded down the road slowly until I bumped him. I saw a glimmer of fear in his eyes when he turned around and jumped on the hood of my car. I then told him that we were going to call the police. Another kid was ranting and raving saving she had no side walk to walk on and called us names. Monica yelled out the window, that it didn't look like there was anything wrong with her legs, nor was she in a wheel chair. I finally won the road back, I was so flustered with disbelief. I just could not believe that these children thought they could stand up against a vehicle just to prove that they were idiots. Was this something this boy had to do as a challenge, how did he think it would turn out? I could have been a real crazy person and simply run him over. I probably shouldn't have bumped him, but I didn't want to get out of the truck and confront him, he was bigger then me.
I don't understand what the point of this exercise was, if you have a clue, please don't hesitate to comment. It was just one of those things that make me shake my head and think did this really happen. I am so baffled that these will be the people of the future. Perhaps future criminals!
Today my daughter came over with a project in mind. She had been re-designing an old fashioned dress she found at a garage sale and was having a hard time working alone on the pinning, etc... I was browsing a new website, that is easily addictive, it is called "Pinterest", it has all kinds of things submitted by regular people, photography, crafts, gardening, and so much more. I came across a dress form while browsing, for those who do not sew, it is a replica of your body, so that you can design, alter and fit clothing to yourself. In the stores dress forms run from $300 to $500 bucks. I had a lot of the things in my house for this project, stuffing, cardboard, t-shirt, wrapping paper tube, etc...
We started by putting Monica in a long old t-shirt, starting cutting strips of duct tape and then wrapping it tightly around her body, until she was wrapped in duct tape. Enough layers made it a perfect form. I wish I could say it was my idea, but the finished product came from a few different sources. Monica examined all the different sources, picking out all the great ideas into one. This is not a project that you could do by yourself! It costs $3.99, the price of one roll of Duct tape. After she got it home her man made her a stand and it was probably from stuff around his garage. I would say it was a great project and saved hundreds of dollars. It took us a little more than an hour to complete this very functional project. I wish I was her size, I was the one who really wanted one of these things. Perhaps I will make one for myself. I love to re-make clothing, it is so much fun to change things up.
I do love all those domestic things, and now I am finding out that these things, sewing, crochet, knitting, and DIY projects are a lost skill. I grew up with mostly home-made clothing and I use to make my daughter and I matching outfits. We were so cute together, it all ended when my life got in the way. I now have more time to do things like this. It is a great stress reliever, because I am thrown into what I am doing. Plus I hate spending money on clothing, when I get my dress form made I am going to the Good Will store and spend some money on clothing with potential. I will be certain to show you updates on the next project.
If you need the directions for yourself go to "Pinterest" and search dress form. Good luck, it is worth a lot of laughs no matter how it comes out. You could always dress it up and put it in bed for your man.
Maybe I am over-reacting to this but I can't help wonder why people think they can just take what ever they want. I came home last night with trucks in my way, as workers were blocking my drive way. As I pull into my driveway, I notice a man hacking away at a coconut. I looked up at my palm tree and noticed all the beautiful coconuts that I have been waiting to ripen were gone.
I plant them and patiently wait for a palm tree, all of the coconut palms that are growing in my yard I grew from seed. I have many, it reminds me so much of what Florida landscape is all about. I immediately accused the man of taking my coconuts. He pretended not to understand, and then said that a man standing near the palm tree said it was alright to take them. I wonder who that man was! The neighbor wasn't home and wouldn't let people just take my property without my permission. Then the thief said he was sorry and continued loading my coconuts into the work truck. I called the county and told them that their contracted help was stealing from my property. Their reply was for me to call the police, I called the non-emergency line and would you believe they have office hours and they were closed. My only alternative was to call 911, that seemed like a waste of tax dollars. I thought for a moment and walked over to the workers, finding one that spoke English, which was a plus. He agreed with me and then I looked over at the man who had taken my coconuts and told him, "Give me my coconuts back or I will call the police!".
The thief apologized several more times and brought all my coconuts back to my front door, I don't know if I can save them, because they were leaking out all the coconut water. I couldn't believe how many he had taken. I felt a bit of satisfaction, even if I threw all the coconuts out. I think he got a lesson, but this has happened so many times to me. I have had people parked in my yard with their pole saws just cutting my coconuts down right in my front yard. The funny part is...all they had to do is knock on my door and ask permission. I would gladly give them away for a simple courtesy. I don't understand why it is acceptable to remove fruit from other peoples property, if it doesn't belong to them then it is stealing!
With my imagination in gear, I had to come up with something that would make it clear that my coconuts are not free for the taking. I went into the craft room and retrieved some white paint, proceeded to paint my coconut palm with a message. "NO COCONUTS". I hope the future will produce coconuts that I can keep for myself. Would you go on to someones property and just take what you want and have the audacity to opening harvest them without a thought about what you are doing?
Today, I spent much of the day doing yard work, looking around to remodel some of my landscaping. Working at a slow pace, but still having a little problem with snags. Snags??? Yep! I am talking about this annoying and hideous mole that I have on my leg. It is so large it sticks through my fish net stockings, and can't be hidden with just one band aide. I have had it with this thing. It has been snagged so often it is just hanging there, so every time I touch it I am in pain.
Couldn't help thinking about this thing. So, I finally decided that I was going to remove it myself. Yes!!! Self-Surgery. First, I gathered my supplies, Betadine solution, scissors, eye glasses (so I can see), face cloths, cotton balls and spray on anesthetic. Preparing the mole for removal and my tools for surgery, I began. There was just one problem, it is creepy cutting yourself. I started by just snipping a little bit at a time, cringing at the thought of hurting myself. I am not fond of pain! After a few minutes it was time to make the final snip.
I looked at this hideous ball of flesh, and wondered why it took me so long to cut it off. Again, disinfecting my little wound and bandaging it, I sighed in relief and look forward to wearing fish net stockings again. I continued my yard work without a snag or even thinking about the mole that ended up in my trash. I thought about keeping it, but pushed that thought right out of my head. I thought I would share this little tidbit with my readers, something a little gross and perhaps a bit crazy. I just wonder how much it would have cost to have the mole excised at a doctors office!
It doesn't seem awkward to just open the door and walk through as if it were my own home. What they don't know, is that I get more out of these relationships than they know. These relationships started out as an exchange of work for money, then for some reason it became something I look forward to. Some customers are great friends, others are just like family, but I have one who by far has made a place for me to change my life. Just imagine how lucky I am to have counseling every week for over 10 years. Imagine the cost. When she is out of town, I miss her dearly, I have to work through my dilemmas on my own. I hear her voice in the back of my brain and work it out.
I remember how crazy I was and how I was very emotional, a bit brass too. I now take my time and have figured out what is really important in life. The things that seemly appear to be inconsequential, like smelling a flower seem more important than thinking about the bills that are due. A matter of fact the smell of the flowers reached more of my senses and made me feel better than just going through life not paying attention. Laughing and talking while scrubbing carpet stains, it doesn't get any better than that!!
June picked me up around one and we got on the road shortly afterward. The drive toward Orlando is about 4 hours, and it seems that we never run out of things to talk about. We were going to meet our other sister, the baby, Cheryl, in Orlando for dinner. As time passed we exchanged phone messages with Cheryl who arrived very early in Orlando. Cheryl passed the time by walking the mall, and June and I, made an effort to get there as soon as we could.
Arriving at the hotel, with Cheryl standing there with a big smile. The three of us together again, the feeling of all the pieces together, our different personalities somehow making one crazy family unit. I can't ignore the warm fuzzy feeling I get when I am with my siblings. Family, to me, is far more important than anything I could ever think of. Nothing even comes close to making me feel this good. I am always reminded of the times we had together, the adventures, the turmoil, and mostly the funny stuff. While Cheryl was waiting for us to arrive she located a great Italian restaurant for us to have dinner together. First, we got June checked into to hotel, and she introduced us to some of the members of the club. I stood there very proud to be part of this sisterly trio as June introduced us to her friends.
Off to dinner we went, a bit of a walk, but we laughed and talked the entire way. The restaurant was a bit unusual, we were asked if we would like a table in the kitchen. I said "No", right away. We walked through the kitchen like a mini tour before heading toward our table, stopping by a table with the revolving head of the "Pope". The atmosphere was joyful and had a great aura about it. Our server, a good looking young man, made us feel welcome and part of an Italian family. The festivities began and my voice tends to get loud, Cheryl says, "inside voice, Mary". Now, with my inside voice, my mouth runs on as I flirt with our good looking server, June says, "Catholic voice". Now, I am talking with my inside Catholic voice, yeah right, that lasted a couple of minutes. A couple of friends of June's showed up at our table because they heard we would be there. I felt like a celebrity, or maybe a freak show at a circus, no matter, we had a great time. The dinner was fantastic and the conversation was ours.
Time to depart each other temporarily, June remaining at the hotel for her meetings and I was to follow Cheryl to her house. A couple hours down the road ends and we make our way to Beverly Hills, Florida. Still talking, we finally had to end the evening, Cheryl had to work the whole weekend, although we have limited time together, it is special and we make the most of it.
I feel asleep on the couch watching T.V., I couldn't help going outside to try some night time photos before bed. It seemed as if my sleep went so quickly, before I knew it, the smell of coffee woke me and an opportunity to talk with sister before she went to work. I noticed it was still very dark, it wasn't even 5 am, but with 2 cups of coffee in me now, going back to sleep would be insane. A couple hours later my dad called and it was time to go and spend some time with my much cherish parent. This would be a time to spend alone with Daddy. We went out to breakfast spending our time reminiscing about the times we had together. The stories of our adventures together that were only ours. The hours passed so quickly and it was time to return to Cheryl's house.
Before Cheryl could return home, I got a call from my brother, who said he would pick me up and that after Cheryl got a bit of rest she could join us. I am certain that wasn't in her plans, but she is such a trooper, she came by and we talked and talked. After the evening Cheryl and I spend some girly time together, but the time again flew by and it was time to sleep, our last evening together. Again, falling asleep on the couch I was awoken with a kiss on my forehead. I got a warm feeling of love that made the rest of day full of joy. Got packed up and headed to my brothers house, upon my arrival the gate opened welcoming me. Hugs from my nephew is always a good start to the morning.
Charles and Mel had afternoon plans, a bridal shower, with friends. I was going to go along and meet their friends and crash the party. The morning we spent at what you would think as mundane errands, was a time for me and my brother to spend together, laughing and enjoying each other. Nothing serious in our conversation, just time to catch up and be brother and sister. Like the day with my Daddy, my chance to be his little girl again. Each moment with my sisters, brother and father warmed my heart, and filled that space that becomes a void after not hearing from them for any period of time.
Ready now for our afternoon out, being introduced to Charles and Mel's friends, I felt like a celebrity all over again. A great group of people and watching a young couple in love make the plunge to the next stage. Hope in their eyes and love in their hearts, I wish for them a life time of joy. I went outside the little wine shop to sit down and give my feet a break, camera in hand I couldn't help taking some pictures of the old little town, big city Crystal River. I was playing with some of the setting on my camera and took some really fun pictures. The evening just beginning we made our way to the Ale House, a place on the river surrounded by beauty, the sun just beginning to set, another opportunity for pictures and to meet new friends. Sitting outside on the rivers edge, the people here may be accustomed to temperatures in the 40's, but I would have to drink a lot to warm up enough to do this on a regular basis. The evening now over after much fun.
Morning once again, and time to pick up June in Orlando. She was really ready to go home and couldn't get out of there fast enough. Once we were on the road hours flew by and we were home in no time at all. Never running out of things to say my weekend filled with enjoyment and family was over until the next time. I am so happy, needed a break and sibling loven.
I am feeling so great these days I don't know what to do with myself. I can feel my body returning to normal, if anything I do could be considered normal! Anyway, with encouragement from friends and a cancellation in my work schedule I made it to a class. Not certain what Yoga is all about, I figured it was slow enough for my old broken body. I have a genetic advantage, I am very flexible, which means I can touch my toes, even with my big gut in the way.
A few of my customers do Yoga and they are in excellent condition, they told me how great they feel after. I had not heard a negative comment about this exercise ever. So, I am at class and it starts out pretty simple, I could feel the stretch. As the class progressed the difficulty increased, it was then I realized that it takes strength to accomplish some of these crazy poses. I found my arms and legs shaking as I forced myself to hold it. It is very isometric, which works for me, since my lack of any kind of exercise has left me pretty weak. Today, was an eye opening experience. Just trying to keep my ass up in the air was a challenge in itself. I laughed at myself and enjoyed the class dynamic.
I botched one of the poses and ended up rolling on the floor and almost rolled on top of my Matt mate. The class roared with laughter, which is always good medicine for me. If you can't laugh at yourself than you are just too damn serious. The rest of my day was energized and happy. I don't think that I could stress about anything if I wanted to!
The class continued and we were almost finished with our work-out, when Shelah, our instructor, said that we should have a little fun and try a pose that is very difficult. I am always open for a challenge, it's my nature. So, her daughter got in front of the class to demonstrate this pose, I could not believe my eyes. I thought Shelah must be out of her mind, who could do this without a lot of attempts and crashes on their heads? Everyone in the class gave it an attempt and so did I. Several attempts later and I managed to get it done. It was a pose I could only hold for seconds, but the important part was that I got it done.
A boost to my ego, a good laugh, and an hour with friends. What a way to interrupt the work week.
Ever since I can remember, music attached itself to my memories. When enjoying a song, I can recall the sights, sounds and even the smells when I hear certain songs. I have no car sound system and I don't know why, but I just haven't the urge to listen in quite some time. The right music helps the work hours fly and I always worked with my little IPod attached to my ear. Last week I came across my dusty IPod and charged it up. I have a collection of songs from the 60's to today. I selected them through my major CD collection and haven't changed them in years.
I put my ear buds in for my drive to Homestead to do a little work at Jason's. After awhile I remembered why I stopped using the IPod, because the ear buds and the wire and you know the story. Jason has this great speaker system, so I plugged in my IPod and started listening away. While working my mind can focus on a lot of things, because cleaning is very systematic and it doesn't take much thought. As each one of my selections began to play the memories began to pour out of the depths, deep freeze storage I imagine. Maybe I just didn't want to think about the past anymore.
An African song came on "Jambo", which gave me an enormous smile and I began singing along in Swahili, a memory of my amazing trip to East Africa. I remembered where I was sitting, who I was sitting with and the smell of the night air. How that night we stayed up and even got yelled at by the staff to keep it down!
Didgeridoo music came on, again I recalled being on top of a mountain at a quaint village in Queensland, Australia, sitting and listening to the actual musician play for me, accompanied by a flute.
Bob Seager and the Silver Bullet band, great memories of living on my sailboat, meeting a past member of the group. Becoming friends and even going lobstering together on his Scarab. ZZ Top songs, a time when I was hired as a dive guide for members of the band, while they were in town for the "Recycler Tour". Took them diving and taught them how to drink beer underwater. I did such a good job, I got VIP tickets for the concert and T-shirts. So many places, people and pleasures to continue reminiscing.
I could go on and on, as I continued to listen some songs came on and the reminders made me miss being young, slim, or should I say rock hard body, and beautiful. I was popular, and never bought my own drinks anywhere I would dance the night away. I missed that and I couldn't help thinking that I am coming to a time in my life that doesn't allow that crazy lifestyle anymore. Honestly, I can't manage it and don't even know how I survived it. I started getting sad with this flood of memories from good times and bad. The music I selected has really painted a picture of my life and I didn't realize it until I started listening again.
Through my sadness I started thinking that I can't think of anything that I didn't do! Perhaps that is why we get older, so that we move on to different things and directions. I have traveled, loved, lusted (excessively), cried, lost and I honestly have "no regrets". It has always been my motto to do so, now looking back I really have done anything I wanted and more. While writing I have to stop myself, because this post would be hundreds of pages long. Oh, the stories I could tell. I have lived 10 lifetimes in one.