Posted tagged ‘news’

“I love Christmas, not just because of the presents but because of all the decorations and lights and the warmth of the season.”

November 27, 2017

It was just after seven when I woke up. I would have gone back to sleep, but Gracie was staring at me with her I need to go out look so out we went. I was a little chilly as I didn’t grab my sweatshirt. Maddie was sleeping on it, and I decided one of us, at least, ought to be still asleep at this early hour. Once we were back in the house, I fed Maddie and Gracie, started my coffee, turned on the TV to find out if there had been any jaw dropping news overnight and then started reading the papers.

The animals wolfed down breakfast, the coffee was delicious, there was no big news, and I finished the Globe crossword but not the Cape Times cryptogram.

Gracie has a bit of anxiety. I figured this time she’d be fine as we’d already been outside. I was wrong. When I go upstairs to shower, Gracie waits and watches at the bottom of the stairs. She also goes the bathroom sometimes on the floor and sometimes on the treads. Today she hit both. While I showered, Gracie always waited for me. She used to lie on the bathroom rug. Now she can’t do stairs so she gets upset. I understand. I also wish for summer so I can shower outside.

Today is cloudy and cold. The wind is strong enough to sway the pine limbs. Nothing about outside looks enticing, but I’m stuck going out to an appointment. I’d much rather be comfortable reading on the couch. I’ve started a new series about Flavia de Luce, an eleven year old who enjoys chemistry and murder. The series was recommended by two avid readers so I bought the first two novels. I love the title of the first one, The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie.

Two houses on my street are already decorated for Christmas. I’m thinking I need to call Skip, my factotum, to do mine. I always have white bulbs on the fence to the backyard. They are the trail of a giant star attached to the fence. The front of my yard has colored lights across the top of the fence. On the side, a small tree is decorated with giant ornaments highlighted by a flood light. In the back, the top of the deck rail sports colored bulbs.

I do love Christmas lights. They brightened the darkness of winter. They celebrate the season, and most of all they remind me of all the family rides we took to see the lights. That is one of my favorite Christmas traditions, and I still take a ride to see the lights. I bring Gracie so I can comment aloud without feeling silly. She’s a good listener.

“Wisely and slowly; they stumble that run fast.”

October 13, 2016

hinesThe morning again came early. I was awake at 4:30 but stayed in bed until 5 hoping to fall asleep again. That didn’t work. I brewed coffee, checked my e-mail and watched the TV news. When I went outside to get the paper, the air had a bit of the ocean about it. Most of the houses were still dark. My neighbors across the street still had their shades down. It was quiet. I miss the hubbub of Bolgatanga’s mornings. I even miss that rooster.

Getting back to the usual takes time.

Ghana wasn’t my last trip. My wanderlust has only been sated, not eliminated. I figure in three years or so I’ll have enough for a trip somewhere. I’m thinking the Dominican Republic.

The last couple of days have been delights. The temperature has been in the 60’s. The sun shines and the sky is a lovely pale blue. Today a few clouds are hanging around to legitimize the possibility of rain predicted on the early weather.

Fern, Maddie and Gracie survived quite nicely. The housesitter favored Gracie, and all the dog’s treats were gone. The home health aid, the person I paid to come every day to give Fern her medicine, did a great job. Fern looks good though a bit skinny. She has been eating up a storm including lots of cat treats. I suspect the cats missed me. Cats are like that. Either they will eat everything or very little when upset. There were too many unopened cans. They are now making up for lost time.

My dance card is empty for today. I could do a second wash, and I need to water my plants, but all in good time is my current view of life. I had to go to Hyannis yesterday and I have a dentist appointment tomorrow. That is far too much excitement.

“If you don’t like the weather in New England now, just wait a few minutes.”

June 12, 2016

The morning is beautiful. The sun is shining, and it’s warm, even hot. The wind is blowing so my deck is dirty again from the trees all around it. I had already decided today would be outside day. The rug goes down, the feeders get filled, the chairs scrubbed and the table cleaned. The rest of the deck will have to wait to be blown clean.

I turned on the news this morning, on channel 7, my only choice. I don’t ever watch this news, but I was stuck this morning. It was awful. I won’t go into particulars because I am trying to forget, to erase the experience from my mind. The anchors had silly repartee, inane comments. They don’t seem to do well without a script or a teleprompter. I want real reporters of the news. I want Cronkite and Chet and David. I don’t want any of the newsmen on the 10 best-dressed list from Vanity Fair.

I am not a complainer about the weather. I do make observations like it’s a bit cold for June or I really hate humidity. I think those are New England things as the weather here can change in a heartbeat. I remember my mother and I were shopping in Boston one day. It was so hot my mother’s face was bright red. I made her sit down and drink something cold. By the afternoon, though, we had to buy sweatshirts to keep us warm.

I am out of coffee, a traumatic event. This afternoon, when I’m done outside, I’ll go to the farm stand which sells Ugandan coffee. I bought it once and thought it delicious. I’ll also buy a few vegetables and a loaf of freshly baked bread. If they have different flowers for my garden or the deck, I might just buy a few of those. I am a sucker for flowers.

“All new news is old news happening to new people”

December 14, 2013

Cold, of course it is. This is winter. This is New England. It should be cold. Snow is predicted starting tonight into tomorrow but, alas, it will turn to rain here on the coast.

When I went to the driveway for my papers this morning, I noticed the tiniest of flakes starting to fall but they disappeared in a heart beat. I think it was a dress rehearsal. My to-do list is getting smaller, but I’m in trouble. I can’t find my date-nut bread pan, a special pan  handed down from the 1940’s. I went through the cabinet, and the pan just wasn’t there. I can think of no other places I would have put it. Later I’ll go through that cabinet one more time. There was, however, a bright spot. In the looking, I did find the new Christmas dishes I bought on sale last year. I had no idea where they were.

The Cape Cod Times was filled with strange tidbits of information this morning. On the page called The Log there was the story of an attempted robbery. The man demanded the ATM money the woman had just gotten. She told him no, and he took off, fled the scene. Here is his description: mid to late 30’s, average height and slim build, a description which narrows the search considerably. I’m thinking it might be my neighbor. The security footage shows him with tape on his mouth. What the heck is that? The last paragraph said compensation will be provided for information leading to an arrest. Compensation? Someone got a new thesaurus.

We had a pick-up truck end up inside an unoccupied house, the whole pick-up truck, a 2007 Toyota Tundra. The house was badly damaged, but the driver was just fine. He declined to be taken to the hospital. The incident remains under investigation. I figure that’s a good thing.

Do not carry armed sock monkeys dressed as cowboys onto a plane. TSA remarked that realistic replicas of firearms are prohibited. Come to find out there is a weapon as small as the sock monkey’s. It is 2.2 inches long, 1 centimeter wide, weighs less than an ounce and can hit a target roughly 525 feet away. Who knows what damage that may have done in the hands of a crazed sock monkey?

I have two errands today, including buying my Christmas tree. I’m pretty excited. My house will soon be filled with the smell of fresh pine. I’ll sit in the living room and just look at the tree. I can never get enough. Is there anything more beautiful at Christmas?

“If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed.”

July 9, 2013

Today is dark with a gray sky. The humidity is high but not unbearable as there is a slight breeze, and a breeze is welcomed however small. The paper says rain with thunder and lightning. I am already looking to it. I love storms, and we do need the rain. This morning I have a doctor’s appointment for a wound check and yesterday the physical therapist signed off on me. That means I can now drive. I can be part of the world again.

All the windows and doors are opened, but I don’t hear anything, a random bird now and then but that’s all. I wonder where everyone is. This small street has kids, lots of kids: eight of them under seven years old, and I don’t even hear them. Not even a dog is barking which is also unusual. Maybe my invitation to wherever everyone has gone got lost in the mail.

It seems strange not to be traveling this summer. The last two summers I went back to Ghana, and if I had the money, I’d go again. I plan on austerity being my life style for the next year so I can save enough to go to Ghana again. Even after 40 years away, it seemed like home, and that connection is even greater after having been back a second time. Most interesting of all was meeting my former students many of whom are now retired and in their early 60’s. They refused to call me anything but madam or Ms. Ryan. I was and still am their teacher.

In the summer of 1969, I trained in Ghana to be a Peace Corps volunteer from June until early September. We had no phones, no televisions and no computers so we knew nothing of what was happening in the world. Letters from home were newsy but only about the family. One place where I stayed during training had a radio, and we listened to Voice of America and the moon landing. That was it for the entire summer. I, who used to read the paper every day, didn’t even care. None of us did. At night, we played cards and drank a few beers (I had coke-hate beer) at the local spots and the wide world never intruded. We didn’t even notice. All of us were too busy learning a new language and learning to live in a culture so different from our own.

Now I read two papers, am on my computer every day, carry my cell phone everywhere and watch news on TV. Sometimes I am very sorry I am so connected. The world at large intrudes on my life. Every bad thing that happens is blasted everywhere all the time, often the whole day on TV. I watch and am saddened by so much tragedy. Sometimes I long for that summer when I knew so little of what was happening in the world. I was blissful and ignorant.

“Like Alexander the Great and Caesar, I’m out to conquer the world. But first I have to stop at Walmart and pick up some supplies.
”

February 12, 2013

Clean, warm and happy describes me perfectly. The sun is out, snow is dripping off the roof, and the ice will soon melt. I hear the blast of heat from my furnace, the sweetest of sounds.

The road was black ice when I went to get the paper this morning. It had rained last night then the rain froze. As luck would have it, my paper was under the car. I needed to get the broom so I could push the paper out from underneath so I had to go back inside the house, a scary venture given my history with ice, but both times, in and out, I took minced steps. The road was so slippery ice skates would have served me better. The last thing I wanted was another fall. I still have pain from the first.

Gracie has been out most of the morning. She is my weather barometer. Speaking of which, the paper mentioned that unless the government decides to replace aging weather satellites, our polar-orbiting satellites will not be accurate for forecasting weather by 2016. Sandy’s landfall and this storm were accurately tracked and predicted by the European center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts while the best model we have didn’t predict this as a really big storm. Soon enough I’ll have to rely on cranky knees and elbows for my forecasts. Oops, my back hurts, must be rain coming.

Today I step outside into the world, my first time since Friday. I suspect nothing has changed though, without TV or newspapers, I did miss some world-wide news. The Pope resigned and horse meat was taken off the grocery shelves. That news was still headlining yesterday’s paper. On the sports’ page, Red Sox spring updates have begun. Pitchers and catchers are already at spring training. Perhaps the Sox will do better than the cellar, their last occupied spot in the standings.

The local schools are not open again today. Even when I was a teacher, I loved snow days though today is more like a shelter day as the high school is still being used as one. Not everybody has electricity back. Thursday is the day being tossed about by NStar as to when all will be restored. If it were my house, I know they would find me sitting on the couch frozen and looking much like Jack Nicholson did in the maze at the end of the Shining.

I seem to have written far more than I expected for someone who has been living a sheltered life. Maybe tomorrow, after my jaunt outside, I will be bursting with news, jokes and commentaries about the world at large.

Did I mention I’m going to the dentist?