BY Beatnik

11/01 Direct Link
The rush of adrenlin as the youngsters run up to the porches of houses that have lit their pumkins...and candy flows. Treats of all kinds.

There is always the one house where the lady comes to the door and angrily tells the kids that they don't have anything for them and to go away...gee, why not turn out your lights dildo!!

The young women at home alone in apartments with courtyards...a bit hidden from the very happy that we found them so they could give bits of candy to the cuties.
11/02 Direct Link
So very nice to have friends you've known for years with whom you continue to check up on periodically. The conversation picks up exactly where it left off. And, I am lucky to have many of them who represent different times in my life so the converstation picks up at various moments.

There is such distinction between the feelings of a four year old and a 59 year old. There are looks on Ava's face where I can tell that she is just not quite certain how she is supposed to feel. Other times when she is certain!
11/03 Direct Link
She is a complicated character. She moves a million miles an hour, full of life and mixed emotions. She is brave and fearless; then thoughtful and contemplative; then frightened; then stunned, not knowing, but wishing she did; Her energy is boundless until she suddenly collapses into a deep sleep. Sometimes she falls asleep in a position that one can only imagine possible when awake...yet there she asleep.

Read her a story, then she reads it back to me, then we say prayers and she goes to sleep. One, two, three!

Beautiful dreamer girl.
11/04 Direct Link
December / January: Baltimore to Los Angeles for Christmas to Hawaii for vacation to Los Angeles and back; February: Seattle for Niki's award ceremony; May: Seattle roundtrip with Chuck; May / June: Los Angeles and Hawaii for vacation; July: Fly to New Orleans spend time with Maurye and meet Chuck in Denver for Mary and Jeff's wedding; July / August: Fly to Buffalo, drive to Toronto for Andrew and Stephanie's wedding, then to Lake of Bays for family vacation; August: Seattle roundtrip; September: to Los Angeles for Alex and Kim's wedding; October / November: Baltimore to Los Angeles and back, helped with Ava Dora.
11/05 Direct Link
Tomorrow is another election where our lives depend upon it! It is unfathomable that Romney and his crew should be elected, but there is always that possibility. When Obama is re-elected then he needs to pull the George W. attitude and claim that he has a mandate and then run with it. We must re-claim this country -- which means compromise and collaboration. Not indignation and retaliation!

I am confident that Obama will prevail. He must. Our future depends upon it. I have friends who have travelled to swing states and are canvassing door to door. Proud!!
11/06 Direct Link
The voters are turning out all over the country in numbers not seen in 2010 and there will be a genuine change in the outcomes.

I am optimistic that with this second term, the President will harness the energies of those who worked hard to re-elect him and ask them for further support.

Let him ask us to campaign for policies. Go door to door for specific initiatives. Let us spread the liberal agenda.

By the end of this night we have achieved some important milestones including same sex marriage and legal pot!
11/07 Direct Link
Oh, happy day! I had the confidence that Obama would win re-election, but I was sure it would take a few days with recounts. What a wonderful surprise to have it determined so quickly!

Those two lovely girls from four years ago to now...with grace and presence! Mother with a re-cycled dress and daughter with her sister's hand-me-down. What a great message to be sending!

Obama's acceptance speech was brilliant! His sweet tears delivered to his campaign staff were touching.

Romney's defeat was solid. Karl Rove couldn't believe it.
11/08 Direct Link
Surgery for me -- successful! Doctor's visit for my daughter, not so much. Poor girl. Distress. And, my daughter-in-law with shingles!! She had chicken-pox at 23 so perhaps that's why she got it so young. I feel so sorry for her. Something she must ride out.

It will be the first major challenge in their marriage because it is a constant and nagging pain for her and not for him. It is an open ended affliction where the outcome is unknown. I am confident that they will weather this, but it will take both working hard.
11/09 Direct Link
Another day in the hospital with good meds it was. There was no pain that caused any distress. As I say, this is a hang nail compared to what I've been through. The recovery will be manageable. No big deal.

Maintenance. That will be our lives for the forseeable future. The need to provide ongoing maintenance to these bodies of ours. Boring.

We are limited and I hate knowing that. Knowing this is the "last" major chapter in our lives sucks. It just sucks.

People want you to be enthusiastic and rejoice in it.
11/10 Direct Link
Heading home after three days in the hospital following double hernia surgery. It's been a lovely stay because I am not sick. I had to have a maintenance fix-it surgery. But, I had been so very worried going into it that I would feel worse and have more pain. It is a tremendous relief! The results of the surgery were the best we could have imagined. The worst case scenario would have been much worse with a much longer recovery time. As it is, I have just one week of no driving. Then three more weeks of limited activity.
11/11 Direct Link
Hospitals are a delivery system. They deliver surgery, medication of all kinds, services, therapy, dariation, chemo, etc., etc., etc.

Wow, 100,000 people die unnecessarily in the US as a direct result of their hospital stay. So very lucky that I'm not one of them.

My friend, who went through the crazy surgery I did gets referrals from our docs office to call people who need encouragement to get through this cancer and surgery. She asked for the woman whom she had mentored and the husband said that they expected her to die the next day.
11/12 Direct Link
I'm not worried about dying. The next place I go will be mataphysical and interesting I am sure. If not, then I won't appreciate it anyway.

Everyone is excited about coming here for Christmas and that makes me very, very happy! We will have lots of fun and party, party, party.

Ava Dora, the granddaughter is extraordinarily excited and therefore we hope that everything lives up to her expectations! We will purchase a smallish tree and place it on a low table...decorate it with lights and a few ornaments. Then when she arrives it's hers.
11/13 Direct Link
My memory is failing me. There is no question that I don't remember things that happened years ago...yet I remembered them clearly a few years ago. I'm not sure when one is to get concerned. May-be I just need to write a lot and get it on paper so I at least get things recorded. It's funny, isn't it? Get it on paper...because this ain't paper

Some things are better forgotten, but perhaps it's not in the plan. Why are some things seared in our brains and we'll never get rid of them. Others gone.
11/14 Direct Link
It's that moment when you are awaiting the news. It might be really very bad. Or it could be really good. It won't be in-between. And you have been dreading every single minute of this week building up to it.

My poor dear is gulping.

It's the dread that makes you crazy.The unbeaerable waiting. Not knowing. And not being able to do anything to influence the outcome. Waiting. Dreading the news. Fearing the worst and hoping for the best.

In the meantime, Republicans are unable to accept defeat. They are simply stunned!
11/15 Direct Link
Yesterday I heard the news. The doctors opened you up and didn't find what they were looking for...they found something else instead. Cancer in your pancreas cannot be treated with the hot chemo bath so they had to close you back up with the cancer inside.

They say that you take chemo well and that it's been effective in the past. You and many others are praying that it will be again.

You have faith and live within a faith-filled community. People who are praying for you post comments on the Caring Bridge site.
11/16 Direct Link
She was a beautiful woman with long blond hair. She wrote poetry and smoked menthol Newport cigarettes. She wore jeans and had a room in the basement that I covetted. I wished I were her.

Her parents seemed cool. Later I learned that they were actually cold. Remote and deprived her of emotion that she desperately craved.

An opportunity to work with her professor father temporarily working in Iran took her there. On the train, a man attached her, tried to rape her...although not successful, it triggered a nervoud breakdown from which she never recovered.
11/17 Direct Link
The bleeding has stopped. It was not as bad she thought it would be. The bleeding that is. And, the pain for which she was prepared. Was not so bad.

There is no heart beat...there is no heart beat...there is no heart beat. You can wait for two months while your body diposes of it naturally; walking around with dead tissue inside your uterus. You can take it out radically with force; or you can take medication that speeds up natures process and reduces two months to two days.

No take control.
11/18 Direct Link
A friend who is an auctioneer and has a business in a northern suburb of Baltimore, also owns a very cool gallery close to where he lives. It is an amazing place! We went after work and had drinks upstairs in the main part of the gallery where five leather comfy chairs sit around a gnarled wooden coffee table. Cheese, crackers and fruit. So nice! Very ecclectic art which is right up Chuck's and my alley.

Living in the country is a commitment to a very high level of work and driving. Not our cup of tea...OK!
11/19 Direct Link
Was feeling really good about my post surgery recovery and feeling like I was ready to tackle normal activities, only to wake up with a fucking cold!

Spent the day reading the NYT Sunday paper, watching four episodes of Homeland, one of Luther and another of Downton Abby. The perfect way to keep me relaxed in my chair with the ottoman. No need to go anywhere. Just dealing with the sweats and chills.

Leftover Margherte pizza for lunch. Nice. Topped with Ostrowski's polish sausage. Very nice.

Although, now, I think I need a shower.
11/20 Direct Link
When will I ever get ahead of this mess? I am always behind. I think it's only been a day or two and then it's a week. So, I don't write 100 words a day. I write zero and then I write a thousand.

Then I beat myself up about it, because, after all, where is the discipline in this? There is none. Just a bout of self-loathing and then cramming.

The days move by so very quickly. There are so many moods and swings and the sky cracks open and here we are naked.
11/21 Direct Link
The days move on and I stay right here. The ages are coming upon me.

How is it possible thata killing and torture and brutality and prisons and stupid laws that are enforced arbitrarily continue to plague this world?

The number of displaced people escalates. The number of children in distress escalates. The number of people with blood on their hands escalates. The number of women raped escalates.

The horror! The horror!

Daring to speak out, daring to break out, daring to articulate, daring to express self and commit to own freedom.
11/22 Direct Link
He has anxiety and won't address it. He has anxiety and can't stress it. He has anxiety and his wife knows it. He has anxiety so he makes a habanero sauce and fries his mouth for dinner.

What a surprise it is to see you. Walking around the corner. Happen to be in the hood, huh? Good to see you.

Friends take work and time. When you are young it is exhilirating. But, I remember it took work and time. We seemed to have more of both.

When you are older it is harder.
11/23 Direct Link
There are only nine days left to finish six entries and do seven in December.

There is a sense of burden with this, isn't there. I can't fail at this because then I am letting myself down. Completely self-inflicted.
11/24 Direct Link
When I am done with you I will go to the gym and do 10 minutes on the treadmill which is my allowence since my surgery. I am used to working slowly toward getting back into a routine. Hot Bikram Yoga is my next attempt at finding something entertaining. I don't like working out at the gym but I make myself do it. I want to find something that I love to do physically to keep me in good shape. That's my next attempt. Why? Groupon, of course. Something like 80% off the price for five classes. I should know.
11/25 Direct Link
Thanksgiving came and went. Unable to drive. Sick as a dog. The lawyer's knee unable to bend, hence, unable to drive. Left us without a turkey or friends with which to share.

Frozen ham to the rescue! Pillsbury crescent rolls to the rescue! Rice-a-Roni to the rescue!! What an incredible comfort food experience it was!

Knee replacement is in store for Chuck. Poor thing. He does not deal with pain as well as I do and even the idea of surgery makes him squirm. He is resigned to it though. Oh, maintenance, is ours.
11/26 Direct Link
There is time to discuss it.

You remember so very little, but it is there in your brain, in the recesses of your mind.

The ongoing pressure to think ahead, sometimes takes away our memories of the past.

Sometimes there is a desire to get over pains from the past. Get over them by pushing them down and not dealing with them. Some of those good memories get swooshed away with them

Dear sweet boy. I want the best for you always. Don't always help the process. Sometimes I take it backwards.
11/27 Direct Link
Syria, Syria. What will become of you? And the neighbors around you. What will become of you?

Children in flip flops as the temperatures freeze. Nowhere to go. Nothing to eat. Just the constant fear. The loud bombardment. People dying around you. No school, no hospital, no electricity, no heat.

You are seven years old. You know different than this. It is cold and dark and there are no blankets and no water and no food. You are scared because your mother is scared and your older sister is scared.

Fear is all around.
11/28 Direct Link
The world is a very different place than what I had expected it to be by now.

Compassion, love, peace, logic, education for all, sustainable farming, sustainable mining, equal pay for equal work, social equality, less not more incarceration.

In some places the dictators fall. In others, they continue to flourish. In some places the question is "are we better off now?" with the new leadership? The lack thereof? The chaos of none.

And, yet, there are many good things that people do every day everywhere. Compassion, love and peace. Right next to hate.
11/29 Direct Link
One friend is dying. A new acquaintance's surgery was not successful and her journey continues. Each of us must live our lives and struggle with the facts.

Every life must count. Really? Does every life count? We want to think so. What is counting? Who is counting? Why count?

I am amazed by my own self discovery. How differently I think about who I am in relationship to the world than I did 10 years ago, 20 years ago, 30 years ago, 40 years ago, 50 years ago. The older you get the more comparisons.

11/30 Direct Link
Hideously behind again! Every time I catch up I swear I'll never let it happen again! This is supposed to be an exercise in enter 100 words everyday. Just not happening, in spite of having done it for many months.

We are at the end of the year. I'll turn 60 the first day of January. Chuck will retire on the last day of December.

A new chapter in our lives awaits us. The big decision is what that is...where to live...what to do...there are many options, but limited budget,