Posted tagged ‘paths’

“Baseball is 90% mental and the other half is physical.”

March 30, 2023

The morning is beautiful but the night chill lingers. It is 36°. The high will only be in the low 40’s. Today is opening day for baseball. It is the 123rd opening day for the Red Sox. The projections are the Sox will have another bad season like their last place finish in 2022. I am a Red Sox fan. I would say a die-heart fan, but every Red Sox fan is understood to be a die-hard fan. I’m going to wear my Red Sox shirt and watch the game. Our mantra is if we didn’t win this game, we’ll most assuredly win the next. Hope prevails in the psych of every Red Sox fan. We are all, in my family, Red Sox fans. Even in Colorado, the babies are born with an unseen but sensed decorative B on their onesies. They’ll cheer. We’ll all cheer. Go Sox!

I don’t wonder if I have taken the right paths in my life. I feel assured that I have. Some choices didn’t have the same sway as others, but they were still the right choices. Peace Corps was and is the defining choice in my life. Everything radiates from that. I lived in Africa. I still say that astonishingly.

I worked for thirty three years in the same school. I was in charge of discipline for many of those years. My kids were remarkable. My greatest joy was watching them mature into good people. They and I didn’t always agree, but I was in charge so they went along with me, sometimes begrudgingly, even angrily, but it was short-lived. It was in the moment. I used every strategy to help my kids succeed. Sometimes I’d keep them after school outside my office and make them do their homework. I remember one parent whose son was late all the time. She wanted help. I told her to disable his car which she paid for and she did just that. He came into my office screaming at me. I calmly told him to be on time so he could earn back his car. He was always on time after that. He got back his car. I always stopped fights. When the guys, as they were mostly guy fights, saw it was me, they stopped fighting. I was never afraid to jump right into the middle of the fracas.

I see my kids all over town. They stop to say hello. I don’t always remember their names, but I do remember their faces. Most times we hug. I am ever thankful for that choice.

“When we lose these woods, we lose our soul. Not simply as individuals, but as a people.”

July 29, 2014

The humidity is gone and has left behind a wonderful summer day. I have no plans for today except to do a few things around the house. The errand or two I have I’ll save for tomorrow. I love these quiet mornings when all I can hear are the sweet songs of birds.

When I was a kid, I noticed bugs more than I noticed birds. Grasshoppers were one of my favorites. I loved watching them leap into the air as I walked through the field. In my mind’s eye I can still see it all. The houses were clustered around a small roundabout in a cul-de-sac. A path led from the street behind the houses to the field which stretched across from one group of trees to another. On one side of the field the trees were beside the road while on the other side the trees were thicker and we thought of them as the woods. The boundary of the field was an old tree trunk with one branch still attached and lying on the ground like an extended arm. We never went around the branch. We always climbed over though there was a path which went right around the old tree. Beyond the tree were a few other paths. One led up a grassy hill with blueberry bushes all along the side. The hill led to the water tower at the top. Another path from the tree went straight ahead to the swamp and continued to a street where the path ended. I always thought of that path as a shortcut to my friend who lived on that street. We played in the woods, hunted grasshoppers in the field, watch polliwogs grow into frogs at the swamp and ate our fill of blueberries. We’d race each other up the hill to the water tower. The winner was king of the hill, at least for that day. We could be gone the whole day and still be close to home.

When the town decided to build elderly housing, they took down all the trees and bulldozed the field. Even the swamp was gone. We were devastated.

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