Happy St. Patrick’s Day

Most, if not all festivities celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in the U.S. have been cancelled. I’m sure children who remember to do so will still pinch their unsuspecting parents who’ve forgotten to wear green, but hopefully from a safe distance after which they’ll vigorously wash their hands (front and back—not just the fingertips) while singing “When Irish Eyes are Smiling.”

I do not look great in green, so I was always the pinchee and seldom the pincher. When I taught, I made sure to wear a sprig of green on my blouse lest I risk my arms being pinched black and blue by day’s end. Little darlings who caught me unprepared paid for their cheekiness when grades came out. (Not really. I’m not vindictive in that way.)

St. Patrick who, legend has it, drove the snakes out of Ireland, could certainly help us out today, if we could only persuade him to drive the current ‘snake(s)’ out of our lands. COVID-19 needs to go, along with several people whose names I need not mention (one rhymes with Tronald Dump).

Maybe if we all wear green, forgo pinching one another, and wash our hands relentlessly, good St. Patrick will save the day, but we might have to suffer awhile longer.

Peace, people.

Not a Rhetorical Question

How did I get here? In search of an estate sale in north Tallahassee, I missed a turn and ended up on a narrow dirt road in my effort to find the way back. My gps has a weird sense of humor sometimes.

It was a pretty shortcut; although, the track grew a bit too narrow in places for my liking.

Where I’m Going
Where I’d Been

And my little Chrysler really isn’t an off-road vehicle. A couple of times I wondered about turning around and going back the way I’d come, but there wasn’t an opportunity to do so.

After all my travails in the wilderness, the estate sale was disappointing. It’s as if I’d been lost on the Oregon Trail and there was no gold when I reached California. At least no one died of dysentery.

Peace, people!

No Passport Needed

It’s 5:30 on a Saturday morning. Scout, the alarm clock cat, decided it was time for Studly Doright to get up and tend to her needs before heading to the golf course. I’m still in bed reveling in memories of a night of extraordinary (for me) sleep.

A few minutes ago I realized that the post at the foot of my bed resembles one of the Moai statues on Easter Island. I’ve captioned the photos, below, so no one confuses my bedpost with a moai.

Bedpost
Moai

Saved myself a few bucks and hours of travel, now didn’t I?

(Seriously, I’d still like to see the real moai in person)

Peace, people!

Turning Left

Yesterday afternoon my good friend, Flo, called me. She had a story to share and gave me permission to share it with you. Let’s see if I can tell Flo’s story properly.

First, let me tell you a little about Flo. She’s an angel. That’s not just my opinion, several people I know feel the same way. Flo is a retired hospice nurse who brings loving attention to everything she does. She is, in popular parlance, “mindful.”

Recently Flo spent several weeks providing her particular brand of expertise to support mutual friends of ours in Tennessee, and currently she’s helping out at her daughter’s home in South Carolina. An angel.

After dropping one of her granddaughters off at school on Thursday morning, Flo came to an intersection. She could either turn right and go back to her daughter’s home where she’d be by herself until the end of the school day, or left, to explore unknown territory. She turned left onto Mason Boro Loop Road and then onto the Carolina Beach Highway that took her into the town of Kure Beach.

Flo said that finding the town, located on Pleasure Beach, North Carolina, felt like discovering the real America. She parked for free and walked through the quaint town, stopping for lunch at the Kure Beach Cafe where she had a view of the waves meeting the beach, taking sand out and depositing sand in its place.

After lunch, Flo strolled out on the pier, visiting with fishermen and enjoying the mild weather. I imagine gulls wheeling nearby, even though Flo didn’t mention them. Maybe even a few pelicans were present, diving to pluck a fat fish from the water. I do love pelicans.

Flo is always interested in people, and when I say she visited with the fishermen I mean she likely had full blown conversations. The first one she encountered had a couple of fishing poles with lines dangling in the water. They spoke about his luck so far that day before she moved on to another fisherman a bit farther down the pier.

This man was watching over six poles, three on the south side of the pier and three on the north side. Flo asked him why he’d split his equipment up rather than just having it all on one side. He said the fish migrate—something Flo wasn’t aware of, and that in the spring when fish are moving north, the best fishing is on the southerly side of the pier. In the fall, it’s best on the northerly side.

She told me, “I’m in my sixties and I learned something brand new. I had no idea that fish migrated.”

(I deduced that since the man had poles on both sides, he was hedging his bets.)

Leaving the pier to walk on the beach, Flo encountered a man about her age who was looking for shells.

“I’m looking for sea glass,” she told him. He had no idea what that was. She explained how glass thrown overboard or washed out to sea becomes weathered and sculpted over time by the waves, the sun, and the sand, to transform into treasures for people to discover on the beach.

Flo was delighted with the way her day had gone. She both learned something new and taught someone something new. Isn’t it lovely to know that even in our sixties we can still do both?

We should all be more like Flo.

Peace, people.

March Nightmare: When Worlds Collide

Some dreams don’t need monsters, ghosts, aliens, or haunted houses to be labeled nightmares. Sometimes all they need is a little anxiety and a wild imagination.

A couple of nights ago I had a dream in which characters from the book I’m trying to write interacted with some of the characters in the book I’m currently reading. So, my sweet and sassy Texas gals and their friends somehow got mixed up with Peter F. Hamilton’s space-faring characters who are attempting to protect humanity from being possessed by restless souls from a Purgatory-type beyond.

Ludicrous, I know, but I awakened from the dream in a panic. How were Paula Jean Arnett and Cassie Campbell going to keep from succumbing to possession? Would Joshua Calvert fly in on the Lady Mac in time to save them?

Fortunately the dream faded, and when I sat down to write yesterday morning the possessed from Hamilton’s “The Night’s Dawn” series were nowhere to be found. Of course, that’s how they get you….bwahahaha.

Peace, people!

March of the Catfish

My friend, LA at

https://wakinguponthewrongsideof50.wordpress.com

recently wrote about catfishing attempts on her Instagram page. For those not in the know, Urban Dictionary definescatfish” as “someone who pretends to be someone they’re not, using Facebook or other social media to create false identities, particularly to pursue deceptive online romances.”

I don’t have an Instagram account, yet, but I’ve collected a variety of would be catfishers on Twitter. They’re kind of amusing in their attempts to woo me, a 63-year-old grandmother. Just for grins, I took a couple of screen shots of some of my potential “beaux.”

There’s a bit of overlap in the photos, but I think you can see that these seemingly earnest men are just what any woman dreams of. The pictures posted are likely borrowed from some poor unsuspecting schmuck’s social media profile. I do like how “Scott Tyler” praised the simplicity of my own profile. Surely I was looking for someone just like him to rescue me from my dreary life.

It’s easy for us to laugh, but if you’ve ever watched Dr. Phil you’ll know that a good many people, men and women, fall for online catfishing scams. It’s not unusual for a victim to spend thousands of dollars trying to help out or connect with someone they only know from a social media platform.

So, before you fall for some hunky looking guy or gorgeous gal who’s coming on strong on social media, read this piece about spotting someone who isn’t on the up and up:

https://whatismyipaddress.com/catfish

Peace, people!

A Seuss-a March

Theodore Geisel, better known as the beloved children’s author, Dr. Seuss, who wrote “The Cat in the Hat” along with dozens of other stories, was born on March 2, 1904. Americans honor Dr. Seuss each year by celebrating Read Across America Day on March 2nd. I meant to mention this in my blog on the actual day, but forgot. I did read on March 2nd, though, and hope you did, as well.

Theodore Geisel

Now, John Philip Sousa, was not born in March. Indeed, the famous composer arrived in this world on November 6, 1854, but he did become known as “The American March King” for his contributions in the world of American military marches. And, to tie into today’s post even further, he passed away on March 6, 1932.

John Philip Sousa

Similar names, aren’t they? Seuss and Sousa. Linked together by March and/or Marches. There is absolutely no point to this piece, but if you read all the way to the end, thank you.

Peace, and march on, people!

Marching to Target

We have a relatively new Target store in Tallahassee. While it was being built I was so excited. The two existing Targets are clear across Tallahassee, one way out on Thomasville Road, the other on Apalachee Parkway, both at least a twenty minute drive from Doright Manor. This new Target would be on MY side of town, nearer the universities, and along with it would come several new eating establishments. Yay!

When this Target opened its doors for business, though, I was disappointed. It was much smaller than a regular Target and everything in it seemed to cater to college kids on a budget. It did have a Starbucks, though, so that was a plus.

As I’ve become accustomed to this particular Target, I’ve become fond of it. It’s easy to get to, and I’m not as tempted to buy things that are “wants” instead of “needs.” They stock lots of healthy foods and have a decent wine section. And, did I mention the Starbucks?

One thing they don’t have these days? Hand sanitizer. As far as I can, tell no one in Tallahassee has any in stock, though, so I can’t complain. I’m sitting in the Target Starbucks typing this on my phone as I sip on my grande decaf coffee Frappuccino with almond milk. Yes, I’ve become one of those people.

I worked on my book before lunch and will return home to type some more this afternoon, but the weather is lovely and I thought a march, okay, a drive to Target would provide a nice break.

Peace, and march on, people!

Bummer Day in March

Today wasn’t awful, but it was a bummer. I got the second of my two shingles shots on Saturday. The first one didn’t bother me at all, but this second one hit me like a ton of bricks.

So, no writing today. I’ve mainly sat around the house feeling decrepit. My left arm hurts like hell, and I feel achy all over. I’d be more paranoid about this being something more sinister, but I watched Studly go through the very same thing a couple of weeks ago when he got the second shot.

Before I went to bed last night, though, I scribbled off four full pages in a notebook. I’d had an epiphany about my characters while I was washing my face and had to get it on paper before going to sleep. My hopes then had been to type it up first thing this morning, but the aforementioned decrepitude got in the way. Now I’m glad I wrote the scene down.

Here’s to feeling better tomorrow!

Peace, people.