Archive for June, 2011

Accentuate positive

Sunday, June 26th, 2011

Biology of Belief is a book that explains how important our thoughts are to the outcome of our lives. However, thinking positive takes determination as well as optimism. Our minds are full of synapses that jump out to influence what we do. I do not know if it takes more energy to think negative thoughts but I do not want to take chances so I put the positive attitude in the forefront. I want good results in whatever goal I seek. According to the author, it is the thought that counts because we have to think before our body can act. In my book that means my thoughts had better be positive. There is a great responsibility in realizing that I am the captain. I am in control. Never doubt it. I determine my happiness and my health by the choices I make. That means I must have confidence in myself. Even when I decided to run the serious rapids I trusted my companions on the raft and what a ride we had! That adventure was long ago and far away and a delight to recall. If such an opportunity came up again, I wonder if I would be so brave (foolhardy?) as to repeat the trip. I like to think I would.

Back in groove

Friday, June 24th, 2011

I not only am home and getting back in the groove but had things to catch up on before my blogs. Watering plants was one of importance. I arrived at Pasco airport around 6 pm and got my car. This was back on June 21. I had no milk and several other essentials but Danny had explained why one should fill up on gas early in the morning so I went shopping on the 22nd. I spent the next day double checking the activities of my neighbors – just to be sure things were OK. A Uhaul took stuff from 409 and it appears that someone moved out. Otherwise folks are stable. As are my weeds. The temperature has been in the 80’s and if I do not get out early the heat wears me out before I pull very many. My back complains too. And my weed pulling fingers. Although there was a bushel of mail very little of it escaped the burn pile. If you want to get mail just donate a few dollars to any body and the leeches come out of the woodwork. I found an interesting book about self fulfilling prophecy called “Biology of Belief” by Bruce Lipton, Ph.D. which reinforces my idea about thinking good thoughts. Good goals. I am trying to translate those good thoughts into action but that requires my body as well as mind because the weeds do not themselves pull. I really should entitle this “Back to the Grind” but I will keep the good thoughts and get crackin’ no matter how reasonable the excuses.

Aired Out

Monday, June 20th, 2011

Debbie took me out to the Ventura pier for lunch. We sat in a covered space but in the open air. I had beer, shrimp and fries. The wind was cool and brisk. Gulls flew around, ready to grab any unguarded tidbits, food or paper. Surfers were bravely challenging the breakers which were not very impressive at the time. Far out a few kayaks were being maneuvered but the weather was too cold for much fun when dumped in the surf, or being splashed on for that matter. We walked out a little way on the pier but Ashton was cold and I had been there before so we walked back to the covered car garage and came home. Time enough for a nap or simple rest. Won’t need much for dinner tonight. My stomach is full enough to last for a week. Bet I won’t go that long though. Danny gave me a kindle loaded with several dozen stories of one sort or another. He gave me a DVD of Secretariat and The King’s Speech. I will print tomorrow’s boarding pass. We have checked in already for the 0830 flight to Seatac. I expect the weather to be warmer in Richland. But the time here went by very fast and seemed very short but such a nice visit. Ashton works at a place where she cleans and grooms dogs. She likes the job and the people and animals with whom she works. Couldn’t ask for a better setup. Danny works from home seriously from 8 am to 5 pm at least two days a week. We had some time to visit and drink. Debbie is looking for work. I hope to see Alex late tonight.

Early Clouds

Sunday, June 19th, 2011

Every morning the sky is cloudy. No rain today and Danny assures me that the clouds will go away by noon. Dan barbequed for yesterday’s dinner and today is Dad’s day out to dinner. I’m not sure just when we do that dinner but we eat many times so I don’t document the actual hour. The corn on the cob Dan roasted on the patio grill and Deb fixed Rosemary potatoes with straws of the herb. We never got to the promised desert. However we watched the movie about King George VI and his predecessor the Duke of York who abdicated because he married a divorced women. I thought he was disowned because she was American but I guess the divorce was a bigger blotch on aristocracy than citizenship. At the real time I remember we were not impressed with royalty and scoffed at the idea of divine rule. Now the latest prince married a commoner and that was big news. I think the practice now is for each to go their own way if they don’t like each other. Sounds like hiding their heads in the sand and the Queen mother wasn’t thrilled. I will stay indoors unless the weather warms up. The sun warmed me yesterday through clouds. As long as the air isn’t wringing wet it is very pleasant to be in California. The company makes any weather fade into the background.

Chocolate strawberries

Saturday, June 18th, 2011

They are very rich and delicious – strawberries dipped in chocolate. Try it. We got berries at a local farm fresh from the field. Just to eat them plain was a passionate experience but dipped in chocolate, they were purely sinful. The chocolate was nothing unusual but the berries were seriously California sun ripened and out of this world. I am told that strawberries are in season all year long so you can indulge whenever you visit. However I am not certain that the berries will have the distinct flavor if not ripened in sunny southern California. See for yourself. I did.

Learning Martial Arts

Saturday, June 18th, 2011

Ashton had TaeKwonDo last week and I went along to take lessons. The instructor never had such an old student before and took particular care to watch how I managed the stretches and kicks. I wasn’t the only beginner in the group but I was able to hold my own. Debbie took an excess of pictures of which I kept about forty so I could make a great photo article of me in action. I do not look very impressive along side of the tall, slim, and graceful Ashton but I got the suit and will get a green belt to keep, so I am told. My right foot hurts and is swollen across the base of the toes. I must have kicked theĀ  target too hard or at the wrong angle. There is a TaeKwonDo class in the Tri-Cities and I will inquire about price, rules and meeting times. Imagine me doing that on a weekly basis. Well it is more doable than windsurfing or skydiving, but isn’t nearly as appealing. We watched a film of King George VI where the Prince of Wales abdicated because he married an American. Royalty cannot hobnob with ordinary people. Ha! As if I give a high kick.

Competition

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

Ashton was judged in the Tae kwon do competition on the evening of June 15, 2011, for the next belt level. Three judges, two men and a woman, watched and noted the form and delivery of actions called by an official during an hour of intense competition. Deb and I watched from front row seats where we could observe the real competitors and their reflections on the full length mirror wall. Ashton drove home in her own car last night and hasn’t yet reported on how the judges marked the performance. In my amateur opinion she did as well as any Rockette on the New York stage with high kicks and graceful transitions from one position to the next. I think there were twelve in the class, barefoot, lined up in three rows. Three were men, all wore white long sleeved shirts, belted by the color of belt indicating their skill level and long white pants. Their fingers were always curled in a fist as if combat ready. Their physical effort was visible in the sheen of sweat on their faces. I couldn’t really tell what the judges looked for but their green evaluation sheets were shuffled frequently to add or reassess personal judgement as the performance continued. The routines were repeated several times so the judges could make comparative notes of form, position, and sustained energy. As with any competition, variations in scores would be averaged out. Only a few had other interested supporters in the audience.

In Residence

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

I arrived in Burbank on June 13 and Deb met me and we drove to Oxnard which took almost an hour. The sun is not shining as I had hoped but it is 70 F and that is nice. Dan has to work a couple of days so he flew off to some other town yesterday. I have my computer so I am available for emails. I had a chat with my friend, William, in Kenya who had hoped to visit the USA but was denied a visa. He is disappointed as am I. He is enrolled in a college now switched to an engineering degree instead of communications although his past credits will help him in his present program. He is a very black man, handsome and well thought of in his area although that may not hold true in the USA. Well we won’t find out now will we? I have no intention to visit Africa at least in the near future unless an Earthwatch Expedition opens with the opportunity.

Whoa back

Saturday, June 11th, 2011

My head says keep pulling weeds until my back says “whoa” that’s enough. Well I do have to pay attention to that part of my anatomy because I live intimately with it. And when it hurts I straighten up which doesn’t pull weeds. I was out early and made progress. If I work at it for the next day or so I just may have the job done. I raked the chipped rock around my native plants and weeded those. Then I watered those precious things so they will eventually screen my house from Abbot street. I wore shorts and a tank top to get sun so I won’t look like the great white shark when I arrive in Oxnard next week. Am I looking forward to the vacation! Dan has no weeds to pull. I will sit back and get my toenails painted – maybe purple this year. Whatever the color my back gets a rest.

‘Nother one

Friday, June 10th, 2011

Dogs wander up and down Abbot street and so do cats. However the dogs cannot get into my back yard as the cats do. I worry as the young robins hop around and cheep “feed me” as if Seymour would get right to it. While I sat munching a snack sitting in my sun room just minutes ago, a different cat came to sniff the water dish and looked up at me. An overall tan color with black tail and ears it sure had remnant genes of Abernathy although with the stamp of youth. There were vague tiger stripes on its legs from the toes to the haunches as well as on its face. Its sleek body was longer and rangier than the other feline visitors I’ve had. They have not shown up all at the same time, just wander through sniffing as they go. Calico backed up to the big black walnut tree and with its tail straight up and quivering no doubt marking the tree for its own. It stood for a moment reminding me of the tiger in the Montgomery zoo when Ashton was about five years old. The “new” cat followed and sniffed long and hard at the spot but did not seem duly impressed. It did follow Calico on through and under the back cedar fence because that seems to be a regular trail. I must concoct a story around that concept. Shall I call it “On the trail of the lonesome cat.” Or “Where have you been, Billy Boy?”