Monday, March 21, 2016

Yet Another First

In a long life with most of my firsts behind me, it's both refreshing and disconcerting to chalk up another one--someone has blocked me on Twitter.

It would be petty to name names, and I won't. I certainly understand people have bad days, or bad things going on in their lives about which I know nothing, which make them irritable. But my crime seemed worthy of a scowl at most, or a shot across my figurative bow, something like "Not appreciated."

Someone complained about a health problem which is most annoying to endure. I'm not a medical professional, but I know this problem is common and temporary. I’ve had it myself. You probably have, too. I'd liken its seriousness to that of pink eye or a sprained wrist--inconvenient, uncomfortable, maybe worthy of medical attention, yet not a major concern. It passes in less than a week.

The tweet with the complaint ended with the person not wanting unsolicited medical advice. Good call. Who wants medical advice from strangers online, anyway? I replied, "My unsolicited advice is to smile at yourself in the mirror and be glad this is your biggest physical malady. There, better!"


Okay, not my problem. I don't rely on this person's tweets for anything I need to know. But I'm somewhat bothered s/he's been selfless there, which is how I came to follow them, and is now so self-involved s/he must block those who remind them to see the positives.

Life's nasty. There will come times when this person feels so unwell s/he cannot function, has a disturbing symptom pointing to a dire illness, or has received a dreaded diagnosis which makes today's health complaint seem the merest shadow when compared. I can only hope s/he can smile in the mirror then and be grateful to be alive.

My master plan is to be aware there's still life in me, that I can stand before a mirror, that I can see, that I can smile, that I have a mirror. 

There, better!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Back Road Boogie

My husband and I have been taking some short trips--an overnight, a two-day, like that. Even though it's brief, we feel as if we've been away, and that's what we're after.

We already knew that highway hypnosis, becoming drowsy after driving a while no matter how much sleep you got the night before, is worse with every passing year. We laugh that it now begins within an hour of our departure, which is funny only because it's true.

After a half hour of increasingly large yawns, my husband the driver revitalizes himself by pulling over to some quiet and shaded spot, sleeping for fifteen or twenty minutes, then driving onward. We favor parks and college campuses, but too often settle for rest stops where it's hot--or freezing--and noisy, our sleep fitful.

Recently we agree getting off the limited access highway and taking routes which pass through towns and farm fields may take longer but is much less tiresome. Would we rather be in the car five hours, yawning for four of them, talking silly nonsense or blasting music to stay wakeful enough to drive, or slowing down for towns and trucks loaded with hay and logs you can smell? Would we rather risk being detoured for a small town's bicycle race (as we were one weekend), discuss the architecture, poverty, charm, or farm crops we pass, or drive the same highway a the same speed until our minds are gone?

The interstate highway system remains the best way to travel by car when time is of the essence, but you miss the heart of the country.