Monday, February 07, 2005

Reflection on a Sunny Winter Day

Although early February, I awoke to find a sunny, early spring day awaiting outside. There is a chill in the air, but one that seems to have an insecurity about itself and that will fade with the sun into a nice warm afternoon. It is a quick respite from the cold and gray skies of last week. There is little as glorious as a Carolina blue sky on a day like today.

It is apparent from their drooping that my houseplants are feeling abused by lack of water. I had plans to do some writing today. I wanted to finish up a translation of "La Parole Ardiente", a book of poetry from Francisco Azuela of Bolivia, but I see that I have more mundane things to absorb my time. I guess I should take the whole day and clean up a bit as well. The dogs have developed a terrible habit of chewing the fallen leaves from my houseplants, spitting their morsels throughout the house, creating a nastiness that I can only bear for so long.

It is already noon and I am just having my second cup of coffee. My medication schedule can be a difficult taskmaster. I usually awaken around 8-9am and let the dogs out for a quick bathroom break. At that time, I take my first pill of the day, a 250 mg Videx EC. This pill must be taken on an empty stomach because it is filled with buffers that create an environment within the body where it can be absorbed. An hour later, I can eat or drink as I want or need, so I usually take the pill and then go back to bed for a short time. Sometimes, I awaken again at 10 am or on a bad day, I may not get up until 11. Today, I was up around 10:30, so most of my morning was already shot by the time I got coffee made.

I had a bit of anticipation for an email from Duncan Bridgeman’s mother. I found a posting on the 1 Giant Leap board last evening from her that seemed to be directed to me, and then received an email from her as well. It was of the sort that says "This is a test. If you received this, please let me know." So now, I am anxiously awaiting the real note to see what she has to say to me. I can not imagine! I know that Duncan and I are the same age, and I have been trying to imagine his mother. Is she the same age as my own, or like the mothers of most people I know, slightly younger than my own mom?

My mom will be celebrating her 80th birthday this March 18th, all things willing. She was born on the day that the worst tornado in US History blew across the midwest and devastated 3 states. For her 75th birthday, I gave her beautiful wind-chimes to celebrate. She moved into a new house not long afterward and had a nice privacy fence installed around her backyard. As the ground in Wilmington is basically sand and loam, digging holes for landscaping is very easy and I planted clematis vines all around her fence for her. Just a few weeks later, a fierce storm blew up and a tornado dropped down into her neighborhood and blew her fence away, along with many of the shrubs we had planted. The wind-chimes went too, but the clematis vines are mostly intact, now growing along a new fence that replaced the original. I will not give her wind-chimes again.

Mom and I have many things that we share. One of the most unusual is our love of UNC men’s basketball. We call each other after each game to discuss the way the team performed, how the individuals on the team were treated by the media and how the opposing team behaved or failed to. We can both get fairly well worked up by a close game, so this year has been good for us both. Only two losses so far for the team and most of our games have been big wins for the boys in Carolina Blue. We both look forward to the game this coming Wednesday night between UNC and Duke, two schools separated by about ten miles and which both have excellent winning traditions. I would venture to say that the UNC-Duke rivalry is the best in college basketball today.

Off to water plants, and to vacuum the leaves from my carpets… journeys!



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