Memorializing

Many members of my nuclear and extended family have fought and died in various wars through American history.  I’m sure my ancestors engaged in wars large and small since the dawn of time.

I honor their service, their courage, their sense of duty and honor.  I appreciate their willingness to fight to maintain control of their portion of the world, or an allies portion, or to remove bad actors who threatened world stability, or committed such atrocities that we intervened.  I am grateful for their commitment even when, or perhaps especially when, it’s shown that our soldiers were ill-used, either purposefully harmed and experimented on (without knowledge), or made to fight in unwarranted circumstances.

I give credit where credit is due, and expect apologies and restitution as far as possible when we’ve gone astray.  I’ve never been a nationalist.  I give no allegiance to the place of my birth without question.  I live with justice and integrity to the best of my ability, and expect the same of my leaders and others who purport to act in my name.

I don’t know if war is necessary, but it’s certainly easy.  It’s so much harder to bridge differences through compromise and consensus – freely chosen.  That’s the world I desire, and that’s the world I’m working toward.

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© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Hands

One of my sisters and I were taking pictures of my son and his friends on our beach vacation weekend last summer.

They have copies of all the pictures, so I didn’t feel too bad cropping the other two young women out of the pyramid for this photo challenge.

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© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Blue

Weekly Photo Challenge: Blue

I took a video of the storm raging last week, and was able to get this still from the video. I went inside after this because it was a bit too close for comfort.

I have to post this photo too because I really want these shoes!:

katespade.com

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© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Police Blotter

What a job dispatchers have, hearing the hate, fear, and sorrow of humanity.  The car accident that killed five, the fire taking all the family’s possessions and leaving them homeless, the petty crimes – committed for various reasons we’re left to ponder.

Murder was attempted just down the street from me – was the child I heard wailing into the night last week part of that scene?  Theft is up as desperation increases.

Lighter incidents of the week are sprinkled throughout the report too: chickens in the road (why were they crossing, we wonder with a chuckle).  A purse was found and turned into the station – no valuables reported missing.  Children’s toys were left in the road, obstructing traffic – but gone by the time officers arrived.

I kind of like that an officer took time to check out something like that.  I wonder how big or many toys there must have been for a report to be called into the station.  Maybe it was simply a neighbor fed up with another neighbor not paying attention – or purposely causing aggravation.

History is replete with comedy and tragedy, with old grudges carried through generations, the original issue forgotten or irrelevant.  Maybe that energy could be better spent, but not to those people.  As I read the week’s blotter, I felt better about my life, and took it as a cautionary tale – knowing that but for the Grace of some Higher Power go I.

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© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Unfocused

I went with a friend to see Cyndi Lauper in concert.  My friend and I both took pictures, but hers came out better than mine.  Although the photograph isn’t focused, I like how Cyndi’s brightly colored hair shines through, even though they aren’t her true colors…

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© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Spring Day

I opened the windows today – the fresh air rushing in like a cat that’s been waiting all day to get inside.  The scent reminded me of what’s good about Springtime, and I forgot my woes for a while.

I vacuumed the floors and washed a few windows before I had to head off to work.  I even spent some time helping to weed a friend’s garden, even though my stuff still needs tending.  I don’t know what my priorities are lately.  I’ve been flitting around in the vast wilds of my mind, trying to keep abreast of my grief, but I remain unsuccessful.

My son writes an email, asking for a nice picture of the both of us he can frame for Mother’s Day, and I tear up reading the note.  ‘No, honey, we have no recent pictures.  I’ll have to come visit you and we can have one taken then.’  The reply seems to echo through a thousand years.  That’s how long it feels like we’ve been apart.  It’s not about time, it’s about distance.  You won’t make it home this weekend, and don’t know when you’ll be able to visit.

You’re further away from me than the moon, I think – the moon which occupies nearly the same space in the sky, and moves in predictable cycles.  Remember how I used to say “I love you to the moon and back”, and you’d repeat it in your sweet, tender child’s voice?  You’ve long lost that high-pitched timbre.  You’re a man now.  You’re a man who’s on your way in this world, and my job is done.  The rest is ‘icing on the cake’, I’ve heard said, but I still love you more than pumpkin pie, and I hope you still love me more than chocolate.

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© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

May Day

My son came home last night so we could get up early and get on the road with all his belongings (which turned out to be less than anticipated because I’ll be storing some for him).  It started raining sometime in the night, even though the forecast only called for showers.  By 8am, it was raining steadily, with no sign of stopping. 

The pattern of communication between my son and I, when I’m stressed, is that I get louder, and he gets quieter.  That’s fine to diffuse most situations between us.  It did nothing to improve this morning’s issues.  He’s an engineer – an electrical engineer.  I am a person with an excess of lived experience.  He doesn’t like anything that’s inefficient.  I am all about process.  I’m also an expert at packing – even if it appears to be less efficient than an automated process might be.  Even though I’m a fairly articulate person, my son makes me feel like anything I say isn’t understandable, or relevant.

Not only were we trying to tie a box-spring and mattress onto the top of the car, we were standing in the cold rain arguing over the best way to secure them.  We had rope and bungee cords, but I knew how to do it practically, and he knew how to do it theoretically.  The rain drenched us by the time the bed was secured on the car roof, and the car was packed.  We would have been soaked even if we hadn’t argued, and the only upside was that I saw that I was never banshee-esque without reason during my son’s childhood.  I bet even Gandhi had shitty days.

Once we got on the road everything was fine, but it rained the entire drive to Boston, and we couldn’t go over 60 mph or the bed started wobbling around too much. I still think that if I had secured the bed the way I originally had wanted, that might not have happened.

When we got into Boston, I found out that my son and his dorm-mate hadn’t moved the rest of their belongings to their new place so we spent the afternoon moving their dorm stuff as well.  My son told me later that a couple of his friends had offered to help, but he declined. (If that doesn’t make you want to ring his neck, then you should be sainted.)

My son did help me narrowly avoid a deluge when we took the bed off the car roof, so I forgave him the refusal of extra help.  The mattress was thoroughly soaked – even though we did our best to shield it with a tarp. It will probably take an entire week (if not more) for it to dry out, but at least he has egg-crate foam, a mat, and all his bedding to sleep on until then.

I’m glad I got to see where my son and his roommates are living, and to feel out the neighborhood.  It’s not as bad as I feared, and I think they’ll be fine there.  They just have to be savvy – as do we all.  I tend to think that the worst things happen between people who know each other.  Strangers often give us more leeway because we all know how difficult it is just to live.

Another humorous aspect of today is remembering an old saying that if you go out in a May Day rain, you’ll be protected from headaches for the year.  My pounding head begs to differ.

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© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.