Three Words

The horrible events in Manchester leave me numb. I don’t have the words to express my hurt and anger. It is beyond comprehension to think someone would attack children. Its unthinkable. I know that the parents and friends will forever be looking for answers that will never be found. I don’t have any words of wisdom or help. I have nothing I can give other then my prayers and my shoulder. I am so much at a loss. The only thing that comes to mind is this quote from Robert Frost. I know they are not helpful but they are true.

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Sunday Meditations

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Be kind, for everyone you met is fighting a hard battle. – Plato

I love this quote. It reminds me that everyone is living their own separate lives, with unique experiences. What may set me off might be easy to another person. We are all individuals and react or act in conjuncture with our experiences. A person might see a flower and see a weed while another person sees the color, vibrant in its own way. It is something to always keep in mind when you meet a stranger and they are mean and rude. Do not retaliate but instead be kind. You don’t know if they just got fired or their partner left or just not having a good day. If we all can be kind perhaps someone will help you through a rough moment in your life. Be strong when someone is weak and you will, in turn, be strengthened. It is the kindest thing we can do.  

 

 

Fun, Quick Weekend

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So last Tuesday, my Roomie and I went to La Boheme. This is the opera of operas or at least that is what I thought. Beyond Phantom of the Opera what other opera can most non-opera people list. La Boheme. I really didn’t know much about the story line. The little bit of research I did said it was a love story of a group Bohemian people. Regardless of lack of information I was very excited. We left home and started the forever long drive to the big city. We stopped at our favorite thrift store and Shopko, taking our time heading to our hotel. I found our hotel on Hotels.com and was very excited to stay there. If you have never been to downtown St. Paul, MN (or even if you have) I recommend staying at Hotel 340. This is the old St. Paul Athletic Club. It is an amazing building with a lot history. Being from an era long past it was like stepping into the past. The ceiling, many stories above the lobby, had hand crafted detail and there was a fireplace so large you could walk into it. Just gorgeous. The hardwood floor looked original and there was random cabinets with beautifully carved detail. Our room was a tad small but we didn’t spend much time in it so that was ok. As soon as we unpacked we wandered around the area by the hotel.

We had dinner reservations a Pazzaluna Urban Italian Restaurant. It was a grand restaurant and quite loud. We were looking forward to having some very yummy food and a glass or two of wine. Our appetizer of Tomato Basil Bruschetta was divine. The mozzarella puffs on top were like heaven in your mouth. Roomie had Spinach and Ricotta Ravioli that looked like a deep dish of goodness. The ricotta made the ravioli creamy and the spinach gave it the perfect zing. I had Three Meat Cannelloni that was almost too good to eat. But I did anyways. The meat was beautifully spiced. The white and red sauces, mixed together, complemented each other perfectly. The only complaint I had was there was too much cheese! I know I am going to hell just for saying that. You can never have too much cheese but it detracted from the meal. We complemented our meals with a glass of white wine. Over all fabulous.

From the restaurant it was just a few minutes’ walk to the Opera House. I was a little self-conscience walking around in an evening dress but soon we caught up with the Opera going crowd and fit right in. We were seated on the Balcony with a great view of the orchestra pit and nearly center stage. The story opens with 4 gentleman in a rundown apartment. They are very poor and in the dead of winter they all were freezing. The poet volunteers to burn one of his stories. “Quiet, my play is beginning…/…to the fire. I find it really sparkling!” The entire story is amusing with little lines like that. However, as a story it was somewhat light. Not a lot of depth. I will say these young men (and women) were fantastic. I imagine to sing opera in a foreign language and act at the same time takes a lot of talent. It was a wonderful experience.

The next day, on the way home, we stopped and shopped and spent way too much money. It was nice to have access to things we don’t in the Frozen North. We also found a new second hand book store that we spent way to much time browsing. This is a great way to spend the weekend. Now back to the grindstone. However, I leave in a week to Orlando and spend some time with my mom and sister. So much to do, so little time.

Am I crazy?

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I have been meaning to post other than my normal posts. Time keeps getting away from me. At home I have been reading… a lot and work has been moving fairly quickly. I have been thinking about a recent “boy encounter” I had not too long ago.

This gentleman and I went for a walk (he invited himself) in the moonlight. As soon as we were moving his arm was around me. I was ok with that but not overly thrilled. I just met this person and had no notions of being intimate. And I am not a fan of being touched by people that I’m not very close with. He also was kind of handsy. And his arm didn’t stay still. I felt close to being groped. As we continued on, the conversation was very uninspired. I could tell he wasn’t really paying attention. As we made it to a bend in the side walk and in between the street lamps he pulled me aside and kissed me.

I was completely surprised. It hadn’t crossed my mind that I would end up kissing this guy. It guess that goes to show how disconnected my thought process is. I have given up being promiscuous. That’s for college. Now somewhat older and a little wiser I am looking for more than just a roll in the hay. I want so much more than that. Well so this guy and I make out for a couple of minutes and then says to me, “So…whatcha gonna do for me?” Now I haven’t been out of the game that long that I don’t know what he is asking. The dumbfounded look on my face might show otherwise as he quickly reassures me that “I’ll get you back.” I am almost in such a state that I could not respond. But I do and say that I don’t sleep with guys I just met. He scoffs. Actually scoffs and says of course I do. All girls do. How he was still standing after that statement shows how much I have grown… in self-control. Instead of knocking his teeth in I said good night and walked away. A short time later I receive an text saying, “You are weird.”

Ok, I am weird cause I don’t want to jump in bed with a stranger. I am weird because I am not a child and sleep around. I am weird because I want to be in a relationship that is more than just screwing. I am happy with weird. This is why people get divorced. They spend their “happy time” in bed and when that slows down can’t stand the person they are with. If I am going to spend my life with someone most of it will be outside the bedroom. Don’t get me wrong I enjoy the romp as the next person but I want so much more. I want a partner, a companion, a friend, a lover, etc. Its the way a relationship really should be.

Sunday Meditations

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Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

In celebration of Mother’s day I am reminded of the bible verse, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6.  Mothers, Fathers, and anyone who has raised a child take hope that they will return to your teachings. I know that in my own life I return to the lessons of my parents often. Teach  them to be strong, kind, fierce, humble, and above all to be loving. It is never easy to raise a child. I know I was a hell spawn but I have returned to the way my parents would be proud of. Parents be gentle as your child learn their life lessons. It is not easy growing up no matter what age you are. And as you teach them be open to the teachings they will provide you.

Sunday Meditations

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Ok so this is a weird idea but I am on cold medicine so it seems really awesome. There is a word that defines the attraction we have to the intelligence of others. Sapiosexual. Isn’t that just fantastic?! I am often amazed by a person’s mind. It is very attractive, at least to me. However, if there is a word for it that must mean more people feel that way. So I challenge you to be more Sapiosexual. Look with your ears and not just your eyes. Fall in love with someone because they challenge your thought process or beliefs. Don’t hate, just because you feel inferior, learn and grown instead. What a wonderful world we would become?

Morocco 2017: Part 3

Where does the time go?? Like, really! I have been home two weeks already. Haven’t done much in that time other than work. I was sick the last couple days but I think I have whipped it. Finally am mostly unpacked. Though I have to repack to a trip to my sisters the end of the month. 

So we left off where I was leaving the Gorge. Such lovely, peaceful country. We head back to the main highway and work our way west, toward the coast. Beautiful mountains surround the Road of 1000 Kasbahs. Our drive follows a low river.  You  see green surrounded all around by dry, craggy hills. At one place we stop at a Berber village. Here mud houses are build into the hillside with their goat and sheep herds high on the slopes. 20170414222835It was wonderful place to see this traditional village. A local even invited us in for tea. It was fantastic. You could really see how these people live and had lived for many, many years. We stop at only a few of the 1000 Kasbahs and marvel at the architecture. There are little bit of history in each of them. Low doorways give you easy access to your enemies’ necks and high stairs keep the animals on the first floor. At Ait Benhaddou, we learn that they started putting the granary at the top of the hillside fortified city (as you can see in the picture). This was to keep the crops safe from bandits. Ait Benhaddou is also known for the many movies that were filmed there such as Gladiator and Lawrence of Arabia. Many of the Middle Eastern movies have scenes from this area in Morocco. We continue to Marrakesh, the heart of Southern Morocco. We cross the 3rd highest mountain top in Africa. There was still snow on its slopes. In the lower levels of the mountain you see herds grazing and crops growing. Even here in the middle of nowhere people are making a livelihood. The colors are amazing.

Marrakesh is a huge city that all of a sudden pops up. We drove, for what felt like forever, then here we are! It is busy; lots of cars, horse, mules, bikes, and scooters. All moving in some coordinated rhythm that I can’t see. Our driver drops us off for the last time and we make the short walk to our Riad. A riad is like a mansion that has been turned into a hotel. The front door is flush with the alleyway and we have a bell boy who greats us at the door. We are shown to our room, which opens to an open-air square. The details and design are overwhelming as always. IMAG1281We take a guided walk through the medina and if we didn’t have this guide I know we all would be lost.  There are venders everywhere and people pushing and vying for the best view. It is a little overwhelming but the excitement of it all makes it fun. We eat in the square that night. People trying to convince you to eat at their restaurant is a little foreign from the way it is in the states. The food, as always, is fantastic. The next two days we are left on our own. I, of course, spend this time shopping and wondering around the area.   20170417155501The day before I leave, though, I wanted to spend in Essaouria. This is the coastal town about three hours west of Marrakesh. One of my fellow travel companions join me and we begin the trip that morning. Our driver was a little crazy. He was older and just not completely there. I was worried that my fellow companion, a tiny women, was going to kick him out of the vehicle and take over. However, in due time, we made it there. Essaouria is a lovely coastal town with the normal, slower, Island Time. Everything works a little slower on the coast–any coast. We walk through their medina and then out to the pier. There are battlements with canons around the docks and we are able to walk around the top of the walls. We, well she, eat seafood that I am sure was fresh caught that day. Then we stroll along the beach and put our toes in the ocean and wander until we need to meet our driver.  A great way to end a most wonderful trip.

The next morning the lovely bell boy, who I do not think sleeps, helps me to meet my driver for the airport. My flights are easy and on time. I make it into Amsterdam ready to explore but, of course, this is where my good luck starts to fail.  I get off the plane to clear customs and people are pushing and touching and way up in my bubble. It makes me anxious. If you move that extra 3 inches (into my space) you will not get through customs quicker. I make it through and then inquire with an airline agent if I can check my bag now (16 hours early) and they say I should be able to. Well, Amsterdam has a wonderful automated bag checking system. Wonderful if you are not over weight or checking in early. It took me 45 mins to find out that I couldn’t check my bag that early. So, frustrated, I go to look for my hotel ride only to not find one. So I take a taxi, the most expensive taxi ever, to my hotel. There I am told they don’t have an airport shuttle. I showed him the website that said the hotel did. “I’m Sorry,” was my reward. After I got into my room I take a moment to recollect myself then go hunt for food. Here too, there were people trying to get you to eat at their restaurant and I was to negotiate a pasta dinner with a beer. Yummy. I wander around some more and find the bus stop for my morning ride to the airport. Much more relaxed and rested I take my last flight home. It was so nice to see my kitties and sleep in my bed but I would go back in a heartbeat. Morocco was, and is, worth seeing. These people, shunned because of the world’s conflict right now, are the most kind and welcoming people you will meet. I had many offers to come back and visit their homes and be personally guided through their world. It is something I will miss. Their hospitality, I will try to copy in my own life. And one day make my way back to Morocco.