Posted Sep 23, 2006
I have had an upsetting time this week. We paid off our mortgage last week after we sold some land. This was land that my folks gave us over ten years ago. My dad proceeded to rake us over the coals for not giving them credit for being the source of the land when we sent out a short email to our immediate family telling them we had paid our mortgage and asking for them to take a moment to share our joy.
Then two days later, my sister sent out an email announcement of a party she is planning to have. This party is tomorrow, the day after Jim's birthday. The invitation reads: Any excuse for a party! A house is finished and needs warming: Time for a party! It's the equinox: Time for a party! The spring calves have been weaned: Time for a party! J. XXXXXXX's birthday: Time for a party! It's a new moon: Time for a party! Fill in the blank: Time for a party!
The timing of this announcement is very suspect. She knows we want to have a mortgage burning party, and she picked the Logical time for us to have a party, which would be right around J's birthday. And she made this announcement on email without consulting us about whether we had other plans, or if we wanted our name associated with her social event. Then, puts into the announcement that this is a housewarming for the little house my dad built for my mother after 57 years of marriage so she could live apart from him and not have him stressing her out. Guess what? She is still stressed, and still unhappy even though he is no longer stressing her by being in the same house. And he has spent $40,000+ dollars to build her this place. Whatever.
It is emotional blackmail, and I am not looking forward to this event. My sister has histrionic personality disorder with a side order of narcissism, and the chances are very high that the only people at this event will be the immediate family, and then we will be treated to the spectacle of the hostess being Pleasant and Maniacally Cheery.
Oy vey. Must make sure I am provided with some sort of mood altering substance that will make this event tolerable. Meanwhile, I have kvetched and maybe someone will commiserate with me. And if they don't, at least I have vented.
Latest reply: Sep 23, 2006
Addendum to float
Posted Jul 17, 2006
As I was lying on my bed last night wishing that it was cooler in our bedroom and thinking about how I was getting up at 4:30 and I wasn't sleeping I remembered a couple of things that I was going to be SURE and mention in my description of the idyll on the river.
One was coming around a corner and seeing an enormous sycamore log that had lain in the river for many years. It had no bark left on it, and it was twisted and weathered to a beautiful gray. There, lying arranged amongst the lines of grain that twisted up to a root wad, was a beautiful water snake, sunning himself in the early morning rays of the sun. He was completely unconcerned as we floated by and admired him, and me without my camera. I'm never floating without it again, that's it, period.
And later on in the afternoon, as it began to get hot and steamy, we rounded the corner and found ourselves enchanted by what the local floaters refer to as The Shelter Cave. It isn't very deep, it nestles under a tall bluff. There are openings back in the back wall that lead deep underground, and as you sit in your canoe on the river you can feel Mother Earth's air conditioning drifting over you as the cave breathes. Above the entrance is a strata that houses a small spring. It drips gently from the overhangs and bumps in the rock. You sit on the river, no motors or planes to disturb you. You close your eyes and listen, and hear the river tinkle behind you, a few quiet percussive fluty plonks as water fills cavities in the bluff beside you and then empties. Around you you hear the calls of warblers, cardinals, titmice, chickadees. The bird song starts to engulf you, you realize how noisy nature can be. Then in the background, the occasional drip drip falls quietly to the rock below as the little spring oozes the life giving moisture drop by drop from the limestone high above your head. When you finally open your eyes to look up there, you can see the sparkling drops fall one by one, a seemingly slow and placid flight through the shady spaces. Moisture darkens the rock. At each little hollow where the spring water exits the rock, a fern has found a crack to root in. The fronds fan out against the dark rock. Down the face of the bluff the years of moisture have traced paths of color: white, tan, red, black. Behind the colors painted on by the water lies the grain of the rock.
As we sat there drinking in the cool and calm, high above us a red tailed hawk called to her young one, the high falling "Cheeeee" awoke us from our trance. There are predators out there. We have a long way to float to our take out. Time to take our leave. We sigh, turn our noses downstream, and paddle on.
Latest reply: Jul 17, 2006
Posted Jul 17, 2006
Well, as an antidote to all the war and hatred I decided it was imperative that I go floating today. So we packed up the cooler, the dog, and some dinner and headed out to Jay and Jeri's place. When we got there, Jeri was just getting over a bad bout of diarrhea and cramping brought on by coconut cream pie from the local diner the day before (Don't eat this kind of stuff when you have had your gall bladder removed!!!) So she wasn't even sure she wanted to float at all and this was making her rather cranky. So she took it out on me in sarcasm and I about turned around to go home.
But I walked up the hill to the house and the aerobic exercise cleared my head. We decided to essay a shorter float, she was feeling better. So after a lot of inefficient backing and forthing she got her lunch together and we got carted along with our canoes, down to Williams Ford where we left to float four miles to the K-P Bridge.
It was hot and humid, around 85degrees F and 90% humidity. But it has rained this week and the water was at a perfect level for floating: no drag bottom today. And we left all the dogs at home, so that was good too.
We observed and juvenile red tailed hawk being given flying lessons by its parents. There was soaring and diving and stalls and a practice stoop, all accompanied by much vocal instruction from the parents and complaining from the young hawk, who really felt like they OUGHT to be feeding him and not forcing him to learn to hunt.
I found some truly wonderful rocks on one of the gravel bars. A crinoid fossil is the stand out, but there were some polished chert nodules that were nice and one rock incised with a crack and a hole that looked exactly like a face.
We stopped at a gravel bar and the opposite bank was a bluffy cliff that had lots of solution pits carved into it over the years. The water level was exactly right so that it was partially filling the holes. I discovered that I could stand about ten feet from the cliff in the water and propagate waves that would then hit the wall and fill the solution pits and holes with a sound that I cannot really describe. The closest approximation I can come up with is marimbas. I wish I had had a recorder to capture this magical, peaceful sound. We spent about ten minutes there just making the waves happen and then listening to the wonderful music the river was playing for us. As we went on down the river, we found other places to play this game as well.
We saw several ducks, kingfishers, a prothonotary warbler, a blue grey gnatcatcher, several hawks, a grey heron, a colony of cliff swallows, some tree swallows too.
Then we got to our takeout. Now when we were dropped off at Williams Ford, we discussed when our shuttle should come and get us. We didn't really want to have a schedule, and down at the K-P takeout there is a house where they run a canoe livery. So Jeri said "It's the weekend, they'll be home. We can just call you when it is time to pick us up." So when we got there, of course they were not home and we could not call. So we sat quietly and meditated and sent a psychic message to our husbands saying "We can't call you, we need to be picked up." After about a half hour they got the message, wondered where we were and picked up the phone to call the house where we were supposed to call from and got their answering machine and so the boys then knew that we couldn't call them. So they came and got us. So psychic messages do work, it's just that sometimes they take longer.
Then we sat in the river while our fire got ready, and then we cooked kosher hot dogs and roasted corn, and Jim cooked one of our garden onions on the grill, and we ate and then we went up to the house had had Peach Margaritas (using fresh ripe peaches) for dessert.
It was a beautiful day and I am getting very brown.
Latest reply: Jul 17, 2006
July 16, 2006
Posted Jul 16, 2006
Well, it has certainly been an interesting day. Seems like the world is going up in a huge conflagration. I hate the news from the Middle East. The problem is the huge toll of human suffering that is being paid, and when I look at our news here in the States all that anybody seems to be concerned about is what the activities in Israel, Syria, Lebanon and the Gaza strip are doing to the price of oil.
Yes, let's look at every event in terms of our own pocketbooks, why don't we. Meanwhile, we don't bother to do anything differently. Who gave us a god given right to drive Hummers and 1 ton pickup trucks to the supermarket and to take our kids to their ball practice? We keep the demand high and then complain when the price goes up and make sure we blame it on somebody else: OPEC, the war in the middle east, Exxon's greed. Don't worry about all those ice caps melting; it is all just a little passing blip in the Earth's climate history.
I bought some clematis vines on sale a few days ago, and today I got them planted. They should climb the privacy fence over behind the day lilies on the north side of the inner yard. I also got my little shade garden addition completed. The view out the bathroom window is splendid now, the hostas and coral bells out there are beautiful now and will be really spectacular in about 2 years.
The tomatoes are finally ripening. We got our first ripe one today, some sort of deep purple beefsteak style. Mmm, it was good. Made tomato sandwiches out of it, and then the left overs went into our salad for dinner. In addition to the wonderful salad, which also had carrots and greens and peppers from the garden, we had steamed zucchini and pork chops baked on a bed of scalloped potatoes.
We got the onions pulled and they are drying in the wood shed. We took the garlic inside after pulling all the dried tops off of it. It is sitting here in the dining room waiting to be peeled and chopped and frozen or peeled and roasted. I also have a batch of basil that is ready to be made into pesto. Plus the lug of peaches I bought is waiting to be processed. It will be okay for a couple of days. A lot of those peaches are not quite ripe. The ones that are ripe are delicious, however, I already have one lug in the freezer, the ones I bought last week. If we are lucky, the little birds will let us have our apples this year. I really ought to buy some net to throw over them. Maybe Monday.
My arms are tired. I did 27 massages this week, and I guess I have not stretched sufficiently. There is a sore place on my left elbow, and I am really hoping that I am not developing tendonitis there. I need to take care of that spot better.
Latest reply: Jul 16, 2006
Reiki on the River part 2
Posted Jun 23, 2006
At this point of the event, I was sitting, appalled, feeling trapped, in my canoe. I could not believe the violence I had just witnessed, and I was not willing to just turn my canoe and float off down the river as if nothing had happened. I also did not know if I would be able to accomplish anything if I went back to where the fawn was lying in the shallows. But something pushed me hard, and I got back up and across river to where the fawn was. I leaped out of my canoe, pulled it in towards the bank, and rushed over to where the fawn was submerged in the shallow water on the inside of the bend. I picked it up out of the water. It was so light, so small, so delicate, so wet, so very limp. There was no discernable heart beat, and no breath. Her eyes were glazed over. I thought "This is hopeless, what can I do?" Then I thought about my CPR training. I thought maybe I could save her life. Then I thought, "This is not the movies, you can't bring the dead to life, who do you think you are?" Well, I paid good money for my CPR training, and for my Reiki training, and I said to myself, "Maybe it won't do any good, but nothing will happen if I don't try, so I'm going to at least try." I felt all her legs to make sure they weren't broken, because if they were it would be pointless to bring her back. They were all just fine -- so delicate, not much bigger around than my thumb -- not broken.
SoI laid her on the dry bank and did a sort of heimlich maneuver and water came out of her mouth. I remembered what the vets did with calves that were having trouble starting when they were pulled. I suspended her by her hips and let her hang head down. More water came out. I laid back down. By this time, Jeri had joined me. She asked me if I thought we could do anything for her, and I told her I didn't know but I knew nothing would happen if I didn't try. I immediately started putting Reiki energy into the fawn. At the same time, I started doing chest compressions. I cleared her airway, and pressed on her chest to see if compression and release would draw air in. Nothing. Jeri gave her artificial respiration, one breath. Her chest expanded, so we knew the air was getting in. I did a few more chest compressions, the air went out and then her heart started to beat, I could feel it strong beneath my fingers. Jeri did one more breath, and the fawn jerked and coughed and started breathing too. So we sort of sat back a bit and watched to see what would happen. I never took my hands off her, though, continued to send Reiki.
She was still distressed. Her legs were totally limp, and she was sort of choking while she tried to breathe. I remembered the dog carrying her by her neck. Jeri suggested that we try extending her neck a bit. We did that, and she was still choking. Then I heard my Reiki Guide Moira tell me to hold her in my heart chakra. So I picked her up, just like you see in the pictures of the shepherd carrying a lamb. I put her head on my right forearm, extended her neck and placed my right hand under her neck where the dog had held her. I massaged it a very small amount, and then held her and focused all the healing energy I could envision into her neck. Meanwhile, Jeri was massaging her all over her body and legs with short, stimulating strokes. Within seconds, she stopped choking and her legs began moving. And then she let out a bleat of distress that was surprisingly loud. Immediately, I felt the doe watching me, angry and afraid. I could imagine her attacking me as I ministered to the fawn, and was not happy with the image of sharp deer hooves pounding my back and head. I sent a thought out, "Don't hurt me, I am helping your baby." Jeri said "The eyes are brightening."
After a while, I laid the fawn back down on the gravel bar, and squatted by her, continuing to send reiki to her. Jeri said something like "I think we did it, I think she's going to be okay." The fawn responded by jumping up and acting as if she wished to run up the gravel bar. There Marshmallow was, watching events with great interest and having the attitude that it was pretty cool that we had extended the game for him. I grabbed her back into my arms, and Jeri said, "I'll get Marshmallow into the canoe, and you stand guard while I do it. We don't want to go to all this trouble to just have him get at her again." I agreed, and she went off to get the dog into her canoe. He was not very interested in that option, but after she pursued him up river a little way and spoke to him on a personal level, he finally got into the canoe and she started off down the river.
At that point, I saw my canoe had become impatient with waiting for me, and had decided to continue the float without me. I called "Jeri, my canoe is escaping" and she replied "I won't let it get too far". But it entered a little eddy and proceeded back up the far bank towards me and waited for me, while I stood on the gravel bar with the fawn in my arms. Finally, Jeri called out that she thought she had Marshmallow under control and was far enough away, and I put the little deer down. She immediately laid down as if she was very tired. I walked a few paces away, and said "You'll be alright." I watched her for a moment, and something made me concerned that she would not get up again, and that perhaps there was something wrong with her legs after all, so I walked back towards her. She gave me the look that said "Oh gee, you are a human and dangerous, I should get the heck out of here," jumped up and climbed up the gravel bar into the sycamore saplings there. I am positive I heard the mother chuff a call to that baby.
As we continued down the river, Jeri asked me if I had felt the presence of the doe there while we were working on the fawn, and I said "OH, YES!"
I don't think I want to float with Marshmallow any more.
Latest reply: Jun 23, 2006