Tuesday, March 25, 2014

This is how it reeeaallly happened!

In a few weeks I'll be making a quick weekend trip home for some birthdays and to visit friends.  As with every visit, I'm preparing for the inevitable silly stories from my family centered around prat falls and humiliations.  I'm not the only one privy to the teasing.  My dad, whose been gone for some time now, is the central character of a lot of the stories.  We all get teased.  No one is immune.  This is what makes our family fun; the tall tales, the exaggeration and all the laughter which accompanies it.  I was sharing a couple of these goofy adventures with my husband when I thought, "There are always two sides of these mishaps and why is it that no one ever hears my side?"  Haha!  Today my side will finally be heard.

It's a misnomer that I get sick on anything that moves.  Not so!  This fable was concocted during my teenage years while vacationing with my family in Maui, Hawaii.  The initial experience involved a small chartered Cessna.  My mother thought it would be fun to have the family fly over the beautiful, mountainous island of Kauai in a 6-seater plane.  Let me repeat, "mountainous island of Kauai".  This is crucial information for the story and of which my siblings always fail to explain when retelling it. Our lovely family outing was not so enjoyable for me.  I've explained in prior blogs that I don't particularly like travelling by air.  Imagine my delight in being flung about in a small aluminium can due to severe turbulence.  Yes, my breakfast found the vomit bag; however, it seems to me I saw other green faces too.  Was it the turbulence making them sick or was it their reaction to my predicament?  I'll never know.  I hope, for retribution sake, it was the latter.

Another piece of history shared at family get-togethers (and why this is - I don't know - it's gross), revolves around my becoming ill on a chartered catamaran in Maui during a different vacation.  My mother wanted us to have an amazing experience - and it truly was.  This particular trip was too windy and the sea too rough to have the boat bring us to our destination of a neighboring island.  Instead, the crew gave us a beautiful three hour tour (no reference at all to the Professor and Maryann) off the Maui coastline.  (If some of this story sounds familiar, there's another silly piece to it which required a blog entirely of its own.)  It was beautiful trip.  We jumped the waves, flying through the air.  My sister, Ellenmary, and I even stood at the tip of one of the bows...yes, yes, visions from the movie, Titanic..we were flying.  They took that scene from us and Leonardo DiCaprio wasn't even born yet.

At this point the heckling turns to me.  Who got sick?  That's right, moi.  I was leaning over the ropes downwind so I would not "hit" anyone.  I've never been able to explain this part of the story.  Here's my chance. The reason I was ill was that we were lying out getting tans and I asked a crew member for a towel to cover my face.  The towel smelled like vomit.  I'm sorry, but rocking back and forth on a boat with the smell of someone else's sickness is not conducive to a positive experience.

Just for the record Ellenmary, Paul, Kathleen, and Jimmy; I have never gotten sick on a train, tour bus, ferry, dinner cruise, large aircraft, or in the car while mom has been driving.

....so there.  I'll see you in a couple of weeks.  Bring it on.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

No, I'm not as smart as a fifth grader.

Seriously?  Ha!  That's what you, my dear friends and readers, think!

The answer is an undeniable, unequivocal, NO!  I don't have all the answers.  I damn near thought I did several days ago but that theory went to Hell in a hay basket.  I suppose for the few who have not been informed of my error I will retell the story - painful as it may be - to keep everyone well notified of my gross miscalculation.  *Deep Sigh*  I shall begin.

Colorado, as well as Washington, are progressive states in that we the people have voted to legalize Marijuana.  I, myself, do not partake in it often; however, on a social basis I have been known to smoke small amounts or consume a bit of a tasty treat embedded with the organic material.

At a recent local party, within walking distance to my house, I was unwise to drink several strong alcoholic beverages.  This usually isn't an issue for me yet I ate 3/4 of a very large medicinal brownie within a span of an hour during the same time I consumed these drinks.  Now I've been told, after the fact of course, that 1/4 of these delicious treats would have sufficed for the entire evening.  I like brownies.  Let me retract that statement:  I LOVE brownies and this particular brownie happened to be very tasty.  I actually resented my dear friend with whom I had shared the other 1/4 with.  It's true.  I'm ashamed to admit it.

So, having all the answers, I believed that the brownie and two extremely powerful drinks within the span of an hour had no affect on me whatsoever.  Why was I sitting on the floor of the host's house staring at my stocking feet?  Well, that was simple.  Anyone with half a brain could tell I was examining my socks to see if the white fluff was truly fluff or if I had a hole in my socks.  A hole would be most unfortunate and it would upset me to the point of having to ask my hostess to borrow a pair of black socks.  Anyone would understand that.  What I didn't understand was why people were looking at me funny, weirdos.  Geesh!

Then, it all fell into place.  I saw my handsome husband standing with his brother and a friend talking.  I knew the answer.  I loved my husband.  I loved Eric so much that I wanted to go home to be with him.  It didn't matter that it was snowing.  It didn't matter that I forgot to put my shoes on.  It didn't matter that I left my coat in the closet.  AND it certainly didn't matter that Eric was still at the party.  I had all the answers.  I was going home to Eric (who wasn't home), in the snow, in my stocking feet, without my coat, with the biggest, stupidest grin on my face one would never want to see again.  From that point I remember crawling up the stairs, lying in front on my bedroom door (we lock it because of our kids) and being licked by my dogs until my husband came home and got me into bed a half hour later.

Yes, I have all the answers.  Right.  My dear friends and readers, you haven't lived until you've been licked for thirty minutes in awkward places by two small dogs.  Trust me.  I know absolutely NOTHING except I have a new relationship with my dogs that I never wanted.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

There's Something About Maggie

Yes, there is certainly something about Maggie.  Perhaps it's her pristine posture as she drinks her tea.  Or it
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could be her wise blue eyes and how they seem to capture everything; processing life as it unfolds around her.  Yes, there's definitely something about this 85 year old lady which calls for our attention; however, so many busy shoppers walked past her today focusing on their iPhones, concentrating on their groceries, or simply not wanting to "see" beyond their own lives.  What a shame.  

Maggie grew up in London.  She and her younger brother dodged the bombing blitz during WWII by being placed on a country bound train to stay with strangers (a very "distasteful family which was most unfortunate"). Later during the war, she met her husband, an American soldier, and traveled back to the States after they were married.  They made their home in Upstate New York and had a son.  Maggie lived in New York up until last year when her son felt it would be best to have her closer to him and his family in the Denver area.  She didn't understand what all the fuss was about, after all she'd been on her own all these years since her husband died ("God rest his soul") but she supposed it comforted her son to have her here "just in case".

Maggie still drives.  She's sharp as a tack.  She prefers the weather in New York but she's "not one to complain".  Her proper British accent is thick and one would never guess she's lived the last 60 years of her life in America.  She loves to chat and would never turn down an opportunity to tell someone about her life. And oh, what a life!

Today was the third time I stopped and chatted with Maggie.  I wasn't wearing a sweater, she gave me a hard time about it but I showed her how furry my arms are and told her I'm naturally insulated.  She apologized for not remembering my name (after all, she is 85) and I teased her about that.  I gave her a big hug and told her if she forgets my name the next time around, I'm going to squeeze tighter.  She giggled in her lovely, polite English way and said, "Oh my, don't do that my dear, I barely have enough stuffing in me as it is."

There IS most definitely something about Maggie.  There's a story to be a heard.  A lovely person to be met. An opportunity to step out of your busy day and find the time the make another human being happy.  Look for your Maggie, or Henry, or Sarah..they're out there.  I promise you it will enrich two lives, and then some. Pass it on.