While I wasn’t here, here are thirteen little life things that happened to me:
1. I made a new friend and his name is Bud (Spence) and he owns Florida Native Orchids. He was so much like my stepfather/favorite Bud that I said, "Say! You remind me of my FAVORITE Bud, except he lives in the outermost corners of the Keweenaw Peninsula where he has 9 feet of standing snow and the temperatures are far below zero. And Bud Spence asked, "is that near Michigan, near that Harbor place?" and I said, "yes! It’s Copper Harbor on Lake Superior" and Bud Spence said, "Why, come with me! You might know my next door neighbor, Lucy, who is from Copper Harbor and she runs a gift shop there but lives here in the winter and I think she might be Swedish." And I said, "Ya, sure! Lucy from Copper Harbor, but nah, she is Finnish" and Bud Spence said, "Yes! That’s right! And those people from up there are good people!" So I will take Bud over to meet Bud and say hello to Lucy when he comes the beginning of March.
2. I think it might be nice to see my husband again someday.
3. Daniel called because he is having panic attacks in the NYC subway and what could I say, because I would too, and so I spent quite a bit of time worrying about my first born.
4. Abigail came over with papers to sign swearing we had a gazillion dollars on hold in the bank to fly her out of Botswana, "just in case" and I went ahead and signed them.
5. I went to see The Last King of Scotland and because I pay so little attention to what’s what at the movies I thought it was a movie about Scotland, by, say, Merchant-Ivory Productions and it was quite curious to me that it starred Forest Whitaker because I didn’t think there were any black kings in Scotland but what did I know? and then it turned out it was about Idi Amin and the horror of Uganda during his presidency of terror.
6. Before I was out of the theater I was trying to figure out how I could sneak into Abby’s dormitory and steal her passport plus those papers back. I spent quite a bit of time worried about my second born.
7. I got really really ticked off trying to find receipts and statements and 1099s for our taxes because I had the news running in the background and heard Congressional testimony that 8.8 BILLION dollars in CASH that the American government sent over to Iraq to pay the salaries of non-existent civil servants was missing. Gone. Disappeared.
Every year, as I send stuff off and think, aarrggggg, if we ever get audited on that 200.00 worth of used furniture I gave to Purple Heart, I’ll just have to sit there in some IRS office looking ignorant and pleading stupid because I lost the receipt…This is why my mother decided to Hell with them.
8. I went to the Salvador Dali Museum and saw a picture that sent shivers up my spine. I didn’t think I would like the museum because I didn’t know much beyond ‘pop art Dali’ and when I got there they had magnificent and huge and dramatic paintings but the one that filled me with wonder was a simple monochromatic sanguine called "Christ in Perspective" which was a sketch for the painting, "Christ of St. John of the Cross." (This is something about which Bonnie could probably write a very nice post. If she wanted to write a post, that is.) It is the Crucifixion from above and it is of Christ on the cross, except, in the sketch, there is no cross and there are no nails and there is no blood and there are no wounds and there is no crown of thorns. Just this most beautiful drawing of this most beautiful man as seen from Above. Amazing. Glorious. Simple.
9. My friend, Lee, came from Chicago and we went to beautiful deserted Fort DeSoto beach despite the chill and lack of sun and walked on the pure white sand and saw lots of little Piping Plovers running ridiculously fast and then we went to the pier and admired the pelicans and did many other tourist but fun type things. Then we got in our girl pajamas, grilled dinner and watched the Super Bowl. We cheered at the opening touchdown and then we decided it was just plain sad about da Bears. And we laughed really really hard at the Combos commercial that had the punch line, "What your mom would feed you if your mom were a man."
10. After I took Lee to the airport I went home to the Florida house with just me and the cats. Sophie started making her snorting/sneezing/horking noise again and I thought she might finally get up a monster hairball that I was certain she had from so much bathing from f-ing Florida flea allergies. Finally she sneezed really hard and then she had a piece of pine needle sticking half an inch out her nose. When I pulled on it (cringe here), it was three inches long and it ends up she didn’t have a hairball problem, just a disgusting nose item problem. She was so relieved she purred for the first time in a week and started washing her face. Rich called and I was trying to tell him about this event except he was using his Crackberry and it was all static and raspy and we kept yelling, "What???" Then I remembered I was cranky with him for being gone so long so I just said, "good bye, I’ll talk to you some day when you get home."
11. I again considered the possibility that, gee, it would be nice to live with my husband, maybe, except after eight days I start to forget what that’s like and it might be better or it might be worse than I imagine because now I can only imagine what that’s like. I have a short term memory issue.
12. I decided to tuck in and not worry about anyone else and I went on strike and stopped answering the phone and blogging and instead I potted up my orchid plant starts from Bud Spence and went to yoga class at the Sunken Gardens in an attempt to regain energy, balance and serenity. That was going well, outside, under the bougainvillea and palms, until I was in Savasana, with my eyes closed and every single part of me relaxed and then a squirrel dropped three large nuts on me, all at once, so hard everyone heard them hit and I said, "OW! Shit!" and everyone giggled and it disrupted the end of class.
13. I drove all the way up 275 through Tampa, where there is so much traffic it reminds me a little bit of Chicago except it’s not -8 Fahrenheit and snowing, just so I could go to Lettuce Lake Preserve and get some real peace and quiet. And there I saw 37 different birds and 2 turtle species and 1 snake and 1 really large alligator in less than an hour. And I took 107 pictures, mostly blurry, but you can ask me for any one of the following (Thursday) thirteen birds and I will post a picture for you (for Friday’s Ark):
1. Double-crested cormorant
3. Wild Muscovy duck (I have 2 really splendid photos)
4. Snowy Egret (I also have a Great Egret picture but it’s one or the other, you choose)
5. Yellow crowned night heron
6. White Ibis
7. Wood Stork (he’s ugly but cool)
8. Pileated Woodpecker
9. Osprey (tearing the guts out of a fish)
10.Yellow-rumped warbler (sort of blurry but very cute)
13. A duck that has yet to be identified. I believe it stepped across the line and mated with something it shouldn’t. So I believe it is a mottled duck of some sort. Identification welcome.
Okay. That’s it for Thursday Thirteen. Aren’t you glad I never did this before and I’m never doing it again?
P.S. Yesterday Sophie and McCloud spent two hours stalking that tiny lizard and finally, after striking many warrior poses, they killed it dead and Sophie brought it up on the glass table top as a present. And it was there, belly up and it’s dead feet stiff in the air. And so I named him Eddie and left him there while I went about my gardening day. Several hours later, after I had walked past his rigor mortified body numerous times, I walked by and Eddie was right side up and walking calmly towards the edge of the table. I figured that kind of miracle deserved a hand so I helped him down. I think Sophie will stalk him again today and he will come back to life repeatedly, like in Ground Hog Day, the movie.