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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Flying with a change of plans

photo-nic.co.uk nic

Last weekend the plan was to stay home and unpack. Yes, unpack. I still have boxes-full boxes from my move. I have shoved them in closets and the shed out back. Worse, I have some of them including my loot from Christmas on the dining room table. So as soon as you walk in my house it is on full display. I am not even embarrassed by that anymore. What's the point?

So since we had Good Friday off I was going to at least declutter the dining room. I was going to get up and go to yoga at 6:30am then come home, shower, and cook a real breakfast. Eggs and toast at the very least. Then I would tackle the dining room while binge watching something on Hulu or catching a marathon of something on television. That was the plan. I kept going over it in my head.

And then Barbara texted me. It wasn't an emergency. I could have said no. I really did not want to get on the road and head to Charleston. I really did not. But somehow that is EXACTLY what I ended up doing. I did not go to yoga. I did shower and I did cook a real breakfast. So I did part of the plan. Then I washed clothes, dishes, and some other stuff before jumping in my car and heading to Charleston. At least my iPod was up to date. I was listening to a very interesting book Charms and Chocolate Chips: Magical Bakery Mystery, Series # 3 by Charms and Chocolate Chips: Magical Bakery Mystery, Series # 3 by Bailey Cates. I think it falls in the category of cozy mystery.

I had an amazing time. Barbara's backyard is a lake so we sat there on her screened in porch drinking wine and chatting. She has taken up crocheting. Then we went to a Mexican restaurant with horrible karaoke singers for dinner. The next day we went to Hyams so she could buy plants. I also bought a plant for my front porch and four herbs (basil, rosemary, lemon balm, and thyme). So now my front porch is not naked. Then we kayaked in the lake because what else would one do when one lives on a lake?

Friends also came by and it felt great to sit back and enjoy my life. I have amazing friends. Later we ordered pizza, drank wine, and I introduced her to Death in Paradise a light police mystery set in the fictional town of Saint Marie in the Caribbean.

Sunday I was able to keep my routine and have brunch at my bestie Pam's house. I have been having Easter brunch at her house for years. Then I drove home and once again did not go to yoga. It's all good. There are no yoga police and I went last night.

The moral of the story is that there are times when going against the plan is the better plan.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Flying a little crooked

Samuel Zeller
I went to a chiropractor. I decided that I needed to try something different since I still do not have full mobility in my right knee. I am blaming it on the years of commuting between Charleston and Savannah for over 4 years. I found something online called 'gas pedal knee' and I have diagnosed myself with that. And no, you did not miss it. I do not have a medical degree of any sort. I do have a recent CPR/First Aid card, but that is it. Massages (which I hate) were not working. Ice/heat weren't working. Yoga wasn't working. So I needed to do something else.

I wasn't sure what that something else would be until someone referred me to a chiropractor. I had gone many years ago when I had a frozen shoulder. It wasn't the best experience so I was very very very leery. But I needed to so something. This place is a bit different. It is not the traditional twist and pop chiropractor. The doctor uses a little tool.

But first things first. My x-rays show that I am very out of alignment. I am crooked. I think the doctor tried to alarm me, but honestly the only issue I feel is my stiff knee. So the fact that there are other things wrong did not upset me. He said that we needed to take of the major things and then we can work on the knee. I am thinking that maybe my knee will get better once I am no longer crooked.

I have been three times. I keep answering 0% when they ask if I am feeling better because I am not. I only notice that my knee is not better and I have other pains. The doctor says that is because he is moving things back to their correct place and that pain will subside. He did actually look at my knee the other day.

I am trying to trust in the process. It did strike me that when I asked him if I could keep doing the exercises that I am doing he said that he did not want to add any distance or intensity until things were corrected. Yet he never asked me what I was doing. And I am not sure he could add any additional distance or intensity. I am doing enough of that myself.

Anyway, after this weekend's half marathon I will probably cut back a bit on running and amp up my yoga practice. I do not have another marathon until maybe next year if I get into New York. That is unless I change my mind and end my career with 9 marathons instead of 10. At least I do not have to think about that right now.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Flying in full support

Saturday I did something that I had never done before. I went to a marathon as a spectator. Now I have more mad respect for those who do it a lot. It was nice not having to get up and out at the crack of dawn or worry about race stuff. All I had to do was get to mile 19 and wait. Yeah, mile 19 was the best place to be because the race was in a gated community in the Savannah area.

We had signs. My friend Star had a friend and his daughter make signs. Hey, if you are going to watch and cheer you need signs. Plus my runner friend Barbara (who has run about 24 or 25 marathons) has never ever ever had a cheering section or signs. We gave her both. Other runners were jealous. They wanted the signs. They wanted the cheering squad. So we compromised. We cheered for EVERYBODY! We told some that they could pretend to be Barbara and that the signs were for them. Honestly, there were very few signs and cheering sections. It was a small race.

So we endured getting eaten alive by gnats, the heat, and the anticipation of Barbara's arrival. I think it was much harder than running. Okay, maybe not but it sure takes a lot of dedication and amusement in between runners. I wish we had some generic signs. I just did not think about it. In the races I have done there were more signs for everybody and just a few personal ones. I wish we had a Random stranger I'm proud of you, Run like you stole something, Touch here for turbo power, or some other sign to go with the Barbara ones. Lesson learned.

And we moved along the race route which surprised a few people. So we told them that we were stalking them. That made them smile. We got several 'thank yous'. It was certainly an honor to be out there witnessing the fruits of others' hard work and training. We saw tears. We saw sighs of relief when the finish line was spotted. The triumph of the human spirit. Each one had a story, each one had a challenge, each one had the victory at the end. And all of us had a few too many gnat bites.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Flying catching my breath

Lemuel Butler
It has been a while since I have written. I moved my domain name and that took more time, effort, and fortitude than I could ever imagine. Hats off to the tech people out there. And I really appreciate the folks at GoDaddy for not blocking my calls because I called A LOT!

So after the successful domain name transfer, I did not think about reconnecting the blog. And yes, I procrastinated. I kept thinking that I would do it later. Well, later turned out to be when my mother asked me if I was still blogging. The answer is yes and no. I just said yes. I mean, I had not really abandoned the blog. I still own the domain name. It was parked waiting to be activated. I still wanted to blog. I just hadn't.

So today I sent the SOS flag to a dear friend who always pulls me out of these technology black holes where I often find myself. And what should have been an easy fix turned out not to be so easy. Big surprise there. But she is patient and she is kind and she has mad skills that I completely do not understand.

And those are the kinds of friends we should all be lucky to have. The ones who can do the things we cannot, or that love to do the things that we do not. Those are the people that complete my life. Not complete me because I am freaking fabulous. They complete my life because they add fullness to it. They add more dimension. They add more laughter. They add more adventure. They add more wine.

So, I have caught my breath for a little bit. I am off to run my 9th marathon. I promised to stop at number 10.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Flying with permission

I bought a newish car on Saturday. I say newish because it is a 2014. My current car is a 2004, so I am in a bit of a car culture shock. I had to convince myself to buy the car. It's not like I did not need one. Well, I guess I technically did not need one. Mine is running fine with slightly over 241,100 miles on it. It has a slight oil leak, but other than nothing major is wrong with it. So I could have driven it until it dropped. (This is part of the conversation that I was having with myself).

For some reason I felt that I really did not deserve another car. I wonder if I would have had the same issue if I wanted another 2004 car with a lower mileage. But this is not what I wanted. I wanted a grown-up car. The car salesman said that my level of 'refinement' had risen from the 2004 Jeep Liberty that I bought 12 years ago. And that is not a bad thing. So why do I feel that it is? Would I have felt differently if my husband (if I had one) had bought it for me? Or if my parents had? Is there something unsavory about me buying this car for me? I mean, shouldn't I feel empowered that I could buy this for myself? That I did not need a co-signer and that I got approved for three separate car loans? Exactly what is my problem? Whatever it is Viola Davis said almost the same thing during her Oscar interview after winning. She said something like she felt like a hack and that people would find out that she wasn't that good. And then she said that she was going to allow herself to be proud of herself. That is what I need to do.

This time I did not settle. Well, I sort of did. I bought a black car with leather interior. That is not something I would have ever bought new. But I wanted the best 'refinement' I could comfortably afford in the car that I wanted. And that is what I got. Now that means that I will have to actually wash my car (I may have washed the Liberty five times, maybe). And since this car is black I can pretend that I am in the secret service.

This car has a lot of bells and whistles including a sunroof. I have not had one of those since my 1990 BMW. The sunroof was on my 'nice to have' list and it will be nice to have.

I bought this and all of my other cars with my own money. And it is perfectly acceptable for me to upgrade as I see fit. For now the struggle is over and I am grateful. I deserve to spend my money on what I want as long as it is not hurting anyone. But if my new car hurts you, too freaking bad!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Flying being kinder to me

I find myself needing to be kinder to myself. I ran my 8th marathon a few days ago. It was probably my worst time. I got it done and that should be enough. My medal looks just like everyone else's. I have a finisher's jacket. It shouldn't matter that somewhere on the trip I lost a silver hoop earring that my mother gave me for Christmas. The earrings that I wear every single day. I lost one, I did not take it off and throw it somewhere. Stuff happens.

What should matter is that I was in New Orleans. It should matter that after salivating from afar I finally got to eat real beignets, twice. I ate them twice. What should also matter is that I took a cruise on the mighty Mississippi River (which somehow I forgot or did not know is the largest river in the country and that the water from 31 states and 2 Canadian provinces drain into it along with their mud). What should also matter is that I was amongst friends. And what should definitely matter is that I had my first bourbon tasting at the Bourbon House on Bourbon Street and than I now have a favorite Bourbon (Jefferson Ocean). I walked through the French quarter, saw the ninth ward, bought some voodoo dolls (which I later discovered were made in China), got my mom her shot glass, postcard, and magnet (which she will probably not see until Christmas since the post office and I have a thing).

Most importantly what should matter is that I did not give up. I wanted to. I almost switched over to the half marathon. And when things felt really bad, I wished I had. Let me tell you the encouragement from strangers can do wonders. No one along the race (participators or spectators) told me to stop. Not even they saw the pain etched in my face and the tears flowing down my cheeks. Yes, I cried. This was hard. And all along the route I tried to figure out what was going wrong. As if it mattered. Yes, I know that I should critically evaluate things in an effort to not repeat them. But we all get to have a bad race or two. And I am taking good care of my knee now, self diagnosis is over.

But it really wasn't a bad race. I limped at the end and damn near crawled. But guess what? I got it done. It wasn't pretty, it wasn't a PR, but it was a marathon. My 8th marathon. My friends where there, random strangers were there, and I need to be incredibly proud of myself. It is easy to be proud when things are wonderful. It takes a bit more to recognize and realize that accomplishment does not have to be so exquisite. I need to remember this next month when I run marathon #9.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Flying when you got nothing

No picture today. I just got nothing right now. Okay, that is not exactly true. I have a lot of things. But right now I am witnessing a whole new era. There are days when I am shocked and dismayed. Maybe we all are. However for the first time in a very long time I am questioning friendships. I am questioning how people really see me. It's fine to sing kumbyah  in front of me. I like that song. Not such where I learned it, but whatever.

I have issues when I see Facebook posts or when someone says to me, 'that march after the inauguration shouldn't have been called a woman's march because it wasn't for me'. Yes, stop the freaking presses. Finally something that isn't about YOU. Hallelujah, it's about damn time. I keep saying AIN'T I A WOMAN? Thank you Sojourner Truth. March for someone else or better yet, think about someone else every now and then.

These are polarizing times. If you don't like me I really don't care. Just be real about it. We do not pay each others' bills so it is all good. I promise. Stop pretending to be what you are not. And please stop saying that you have black friends. And yes, I know that I speak very well. Thank you, mom. And I am highly educated. So don't act surprised.

The claws have come out. The sheets have come off. I can see folks clearly now. So clearly that I am almost sad. Fake friends hurt and are a complete waste of time. Pretty smile just keep on walking. I am trying to finesse the art of professional respect with the knowledge that I now know who you really are. It takes a lot of energy and frankly I am pissed. I wish you would have proud to show your truths BEFORE the election. Before I liked you. Before I felt betrayed.

Oh well, life goes on. I will be just fine.