I have been sitting here struggling with what to put up for a post, and have had trouble coming up with one. Happily, my inspiration came in the form a photo. And while I am happy that I have a photo that I can post, I am not happy about the post in the photo. Because the post in the photo is definitely down. (The lamp post down here is in my front yard, and it is supposed to be upright. It was a bit on the wobbly side until some time on Monday, at which point a windy day fixed the wobbliness. Yay! It no longer wobbles.)
After the push of the last few days, getting organized for Thanksgiving festivities with a house full of guests, it was nice to have a day that was almost entirely unscheduled. I did take my sister and nephews to the airport at 4 a.m., which was 2 plus hours round trip. And we had a puppy obedience class at 6. But between those hours, we didn’t have any scheduled commitments. What we did have was a bunch of things still to wash and put away.
In any case, the kids and I and my mother (who is visiting) played some card games and did a jigsaw puzzle together in between clean-up and organization tasks. At one point, my mother and I went in the kitchen to make some tea before starting a game, and I guess we were gone a bit longer than expected, discussing various place setting issues that had come up for last night’s dinner for 12. My daughter asked: “What were you talking about.”
“Oh, dishes,” my mom said.
“And utensils,” I added.
“I can’t wait to be an adult,” my daughter quipped.
It’s true. The ways of adulting are multifaceted and glamorous.
Our neighborhood flock of wild turkeys has been coming around frequently again lately. Their numbers seem to have increased, as well. About a week ago, I counted 35 turkeys in our back yard.
This morning, a few of them stopped by the bird feeders for their Thanksgiving Day feast. It’s fun to see them jumping to reach the bird feeders.
My family’s Thanksgiving feast is also finished, and included fewer seeds, and much less jumping. We had family visiting from California, and a few local friends joined us as well for a total of 12 for dinner. It was another long day of cooking and such. Tomorrow morning, I have to drive my sister and nephews to the airport at around 4, so I am once more short on time to write.
Today I finally decided to delete the Facebook app from my phone. It was using more and more space on my phone, until it was gradually crowding out everything else. It turned out that the version of the app I was using was caching every single thing I was reading. So each article I opened through app was taking up space on the phone. (I was using an older version so as to avoid some privacy issues that people had complained about with the introduction of a separate Facebook messaging app.) In the last few days, I was reading more and more articles, until my phone reached capacity. I couldn’t take new photos without deleting apps. And then I’d run out of space again, and delete more apps. Finally, I decided that I just needed to break from it, and delete the app.
I realize that this is a good allegory, as all the articles I’ve been reading have also been crowding my brain, and I may be effectively deleting other mental applications as I work to process all of the election news. (Of course, I can and do still check Facebook on my laptop, and have continued to read articles and follow links there, but it’s a bit less all-the-time-always-in-my-pocket-always-in-my-face.)
Now I can take photos with my phone again without regularly running out of space. And taking photos is one of the things that brings me enjoyment. I like it that I have a pretty decent camera always in my pocket. (I like taking photos with my big camera, too, but it isn’t generally as handy. Also, the hard drive on my laptop is so full that I can’t import the larger files the camera produces without deleting stuff from my laptop. Sigh.)
The photos in this post are some I took a few weeks ago at our local diner. (A few weeks ago, my phone still had room to take photos, and my head was still full of optimism about the election.)
And on to my daily-ish gratitude. This post reminds me that I am grateful for photography, and the accessibility of digital photography. I love being able to so easily capture moments from my life. And I especially love being able to document the beauty that I see in the details of the world around me.
And since I skipped my enumeration of gratitude yesterday, I will offer a second serving. I am grateful to be alive in this age when so much information is available at our fingertips. While it is a double-edged sword at times like this, which overload us with news and opinion, on the whole the web (or the internet, in all its incarnations and implementations) offers us the power of knowledge.
Tonight, a wise friend sent me a message that I really appreciated: “I want to remind you that you should put on your oxygen mask before assisting others.” I have been spending a lot of hours the last couple of days thinking of ways that I can do more to help more people. So many people are hurting and scared right now. But I shouldn’t beat myself up for taking a bit of time to regroup and recoup. I can only help others if I have not passed out for lack of breath.
Tonight I am grateful for friends. It has been immensely helpful to me to talk with like-minded friends (and family members) in the shock of these election results. And I appreciate that friends, even those who don’t share my political views, have checked in with me to express their compassion and concern. I am very lucky to have so many wonderful people in my life, near and far.
As part of my Mother’s Day present, Theo gave me temporary custody of his much-loved new tiger, Tigs. First it was going to be just for the day, but then he decided I should get to have Tigs for a week. Later that week, I had a lab meeting in Boston, and I decided that I would appreciate the company of a tiger for my day.
First, Tigs helped me to feed the parking meter. Because it really bites to get a parking ticket. (And tigers know all about bites.)
Next, we walked down to the building where I had my meeting.
We made sure to stop to admire the spring flowers along the way.
After a bit, we headed back out to pick up some provisions. Again, we admired the scenery along the way.
For lunch, we opted for Thai food.
Then, we shared some coffee.
Back at the meeting, Tigs offered some editing advice on an abstract.
Then he did some light reading to keep himself amused while the humans discussed research.
When it was time to go, Tigs couldn’t resist a slide down the banister on our way out.
And then we buckled back in for the long drive home.
Overall, Tigs made a delightful workday companion. And from the happy expression on his face, I’m quite sure he enjoyed his big day in the big city.