Category Archives: Family

Transport Where? To the Heart of Course

Yup, a reblog of a reblog of sorts. Can’t help it. Matters of the heart and all that!

One year ago today on my bridgesburning blog I wrote a post as part of a writing challenge asking where I would choose to be transported if such a …

Transport Where? To the Heart of Course

Wondering on Wednesday

JB and I have a lot in common in spite of a very different up-bringing and location and circumstance. The intricacies of her mind provide me with a view to a world I might not otherwise see. I hope you enjoy this very interesting post about a part of that world that is A World Apart in time as well as distance.

Today was another busy, social day and it is my turn to write a post for A World Apart. Chris, she of 43 degrees north and I take turns in writing …

Wondering on Wednesday

Transport where?

WRITING CHALLENGE

I have been doing a fun exercise and thought I would share today’s with you.

Today choose a place to which you would like to be transported if you could – and tell us the back-story. How does this specific location affect you?  Is it somewhere you’ve been, luring you with the power of nostalgia, or a place you are aching to explore for the first time?

There is a place I have been to once that claimed my spirit at first sight. Often in my thoughts and always in my heart, it is my first choice, and perhaps the second and third.   The land of my mother, more ancient than the continent on which I currently reside, has a rich history.

 The town, at the heart of the matter, was established about 1160.  In contrast the city in which I dwell was established in 1807.  Apparently back about 1100 we had an assortment of Vikings and Indigenous folk tromping around this country.

Even the age of Canada is considered ‘young’ at 200 million years whereas my land of dreams boasts a hearty age of about 500 million years.  Around the time when it drifted northwest from about 30 degrees south of the equator to its present latitude of about 54 degrees north.

Rocks, stones, green, and of course the sea welcomed this weary traveler.  The city is more that 800 miles further north than Kitchener Ontario, closer to the Arctic than we, but it is warmed by the Gulf Stream from the Atlantic so more protected from the extremes of Canada.  

Being so far north it has glorious longer days in summer, which I got to experience.  Of course the reverse holds true for the winter so my desire to be transported will be in summer please.  Far past midnight there is a light.

Did I embrace a city so rich in history, romance, intrigue, and mystery or did it embrace me? Could it recognize the DNA of far traveled offspring?  Was it the sea air, touring a city under the present one, drinking water so pure it is rated one of the best in the world, and buildings and castles built long ago, or was it something more?

My mini-me resides there, the daughter of my mother’s identical twin and four days younger than I – an important distinction to make believe me.  We speak in face-to-face everyday, sometimes just for a few minutes, sometimes a bit longer, but it ties me even closer to this family and my city of choice – Edinburgh.

I heard today…

I heard today of a passing,

Expected but painful in it’s loss.

I heard today of a birth,

And joy in celebration.

I heard today of a fine dinner

Cooked by a young couple for a grandmother.

And the thought occurred:

In this one day is the perfect depiction of Life.

And I gave Thanks.

Under the Tuscan Sun

JB’s philosophy of ‘I choose how I will spend the rest of my life’ is always a warming hug whenever I visit. Choosing. It may be the best part of life. The choices may not sometimes be all that palatable, and sometimes consists solely of chosen attitude. How lucky we are to ‘choose’. Mandela chose a positive attitude in his years of prison, Hawking chose to move beyond physical restraints. Choosing is not wishing. I wish I were free. I wish I were rich. It is choosing a course of action, an attitude. A dear friend believes you don’t spend your time wishing but you play the hand you are dealt. That is not giving in to the hand or being happy with what you have. It is choosing. And choosing leads to action. That trip JB chose to take even when her plans fell apart and she would suddenly be doing it alone. She sold her house and made the move of a lifetime. A Septuagenarian Adventure. That’s my friend. An adventurer. Stroll around her blog and bask in the Tuscan sun, the New Zealand countryside, and the dance in the sea of her most treasured thing – words. Books, stories, poems. My friend. My treasure.

I choose how I will spend the rest of my life

On turning the calendar card I was confronted with this –

The wording on the card reads –

“The Italian enthusiasm for cycling come to the fore every spring during the Giro d’Italia, a three-week-long road race across some of the peninsula’s most challenging terrain. Thrills, hills, and spills aside, two-wheeled vehicles are an integral part of Italian culture and an uplifting fixture of daily life”

I was immediately transported back to my brief sojourn in Florence in 2013. Can it really be six years ago?

On October 23, 2013, I recorded Day 16 in Florence and noted that the World Road Cycling Championship had just been raced in and around Florence. Cycling memorabilia was on display and for sale everywhere one looked. I succumbed and purchased two little battery operated bicycles with pedalling cyclists whizzing around the footpaths. If you are interested, click here for that post.

Oh, how…

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A Personal Canadian Peek Mid-War

By August 1942 the Second World War was in full stride.  The Americans had not yet officially joined the fight but Canada had continuous training programs, turning out young men.  One young man who had enlisted at the age of seventeen on Friday, March 13, 1942  found himself at the Niagara training camp in August awaiting deployment.  While thoughts of preparation and defense were put into action, back home in Kitchener, Ontario, a young mid teen boy sends a letter to his older brother detailing the concerns of his life.

This is a glimpse, the vernacular of yesteryear is as heartwarming as today’s seems cold.  It smacks of Andy Hardy, but alas most of you will not know who that is.  That’s okay.  For some of us, ‘old lady..’ and ‘swell’ just bring back a wash of simpler times.

Enjoy!

via A Personal Post

Falling Off the Map

My Octobers and Thanksgiving have little change from year to year. And that is something to be grateful for.

And special thanks given to those original commentators of six years ago who today are even more a part of my life, now sisters and comrades in life: Judith of New Zealand, Snipewife,  Eliz at Mirth and Motivation, and of course Colleen the Chatter Master,  and Joss who was a Crowing Crone back then and now author, and Winsome Bella, and dear dear Celi of Kitchensgardens and the Farmy,

bridgesburning

Falling Off the Map

It’s amazing how one day of not blogging turns into two or three.  I started a number of times each day just to wander off either physically or mentally.  The notes below I did on Sunday basking in the warmth of a true summer like day.

‘Canadian Thanksgiving

This is my favorite holiday of the year, unsullied by commercialism, and stress, a true time of thanksgiving.  Most years it is cold, many times snowy and the odd time like this year it is warm and sunny.  When I say warm I mean like 70ish which is warm for the frozen north.  I am outside, reclining under a cloudless sky, so blue it could be it could be a vast warm ocean, wearing summer togs and listening to leaves rustling from a gentle breeze.  Somewhere distant there is the drone of a lawn mower.

This is the…

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Hidden Messages in the Midst of Demented Ramblings

The strangest thing happened yesterday and the thought of it stays with me today.  I visit frequently and regularly with a dear relative who suffers from dementia.  The kind of dementia doesn’t matter, it all translates to the same thing.  Inability to communicate, to understand, to know.

I read once that someone asked an old man why he went to see his wife in the nursing home every day when she suffered from such severe dementia that she did not know him.  He replied that yes she did not know who he was, but he knew who she was.  I think of that so often.

Anyway, I am pretty much the only person who visits this dear soul and I do it because she is family, we have a long history and because I love her greatly.  Her degree of dementia varies from day to day.  Sometimes she knows who I am, most times she just knows I am a nice lady who visits her often.  Sometimes she knows, and announces to everyone that I am her great great great…but cannot remember what.

I used to visit her in the mornings until it was time for her lunch but then the Home would call me in the evenings because that is when her agitation grew worse (It’s called Sundowners) and they would ask me to calm her if I could.  So now I visit from about 3 pm to 5 pm and this seems to keep her grounded and most times content.

Our routine each visit is pretty much the same.  Big hello and hugs and then I take her to a common area, make her a cup of tea exactly the way she likes it (the water must come to a rolling boil) and we look through magazines.  Sometimes there are groupings of words that make sense and sometimes for a short while she is pretty accurate to somethings.  Once she looked through a magazine and saw an article on MS and commented on it.  I always put a few magazines out and when she finishes one she picks up another.  She ended up picking up the same magazine she had just put down.  I did not say anything and continued to peruse my own book, always keeping an eye on her.

As she flipped through the pages she said, ‘There must be a lot of MS about because here is another article about it.’  I only said, ‘Really?’

But that is not what I wanted to tell you.  I always listen to every word she says even when they seem to make no sense.  It seems the respectful thing to do.

After tea I take her to her room and help her to lie down to stretch out her back (other wise she is in her wheelchair all day) and then I read her Bible to her until it is time for her evening meal.  She has read her Bible every day  since she was a child but can no longer hold the book or read the print.

I always sit at the foot of her bed as I read.  I stopped for a moment and she started to talk.  Trying to tell me something but things like, ‘ I am a a a a  airplane,’ would come out instead.  And still I listened and suddenly, quietly, the strangest words were coming out of her mouth,  ‘We have talked about it you know, the kindness.  You coming here to be with me so much.  Your kindness to me.  Your kindness does not go unnoticed you know.’

She raised her hand and placed in over her heart, ‘I feel your kindness.’

She looked at me, very aware in the moment, and all I could say was, ‘I come because I love you.’

She raised her hand pointing up and said, ‘Do not love me, Love Him ‘In the time it takes to breathe out it was over and she began rambling on about a myriad of things none of which made any  sense.

And I was touched.