When I lived in Austin, I moved several times. Always in July or August. Hot and muggy and horrible for hauling heavy stuff from house to truck to house again. When I left there I settled into a house. I’ve been here 14 years now. Yet every August, I feel as if I should pack up and move. It’s the time of year to do the heat stroke boogie.
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Uncle Bill must have had big plans for those cherries. When he heard that I’d been climbing the cherry tree in the back yard eating up the cherries he was most unhappy with me. You can’t give back a juicy, sweet cherry once you’ve eaten it. But, really, those particular cherries – illegally seized right from the tree – were the best dang cherries I ever ate.
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Our first summer,
Do you remember that one?
We lived down by the river
And caught fish for the 4th?
Remember that old tub
We filled with ice and watermelon?
We put a blanket on the grass
And watched the fireworks.
We chased grasshoppers in
The weeds behind the house.
When everyone was gone and
The night was quiet
We lay on the blanket all night long,
Just the two of us
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Tent Rocks National Monument – ever hear of it? It’s an out of the way spot between Albuquerque and Santa Fe full of beautiful and unusual rock formations. I’ve been there before and I’m planning to go again. I’m looking forward to it. It’s a favorite place for me full of happy memories. Don’t you love getting out of town?
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She told a story about a flirty, teasing autograph she received from the author of a book. It brought back memories of my favorite autograph. It was from a singer at a jazz concert. She signed her CD cover with “You were great last night.” I thought that was . . .
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Have you ever driven across the state of Texas? It takes two days. A good bit of the time you’re driving past scrubby desert or green fields dotted with cows or goats. Old fashioned water windmills, oil pump jacks, and miles of tall wind turbine windmills share the horizon. Yet you can watch a television show live from the BBC while rolling along at 75 miles an hour across Texas. It’s amazing.
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Years ago someone said to me, “We all have our own cross to bear.” That made so much sense to me and has always been a guiding principle in my life. The other day I saw someone tweet that people were struggling with all the things they weren’t tweeting. Same thought, but it makes me aware of how we curate our lives these days. We present only parts of ourselves on Facebook or Twitter and hide the rest. We’re so public but at the same time, we’re so private. We’re still bearing our crosses, even in a world some consider completely without privacy.
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I remember as a younger person staring at the stars for hours. I learned to find the Big Dipper and the Little Dipper, Orion, The Pleiades, Gemini and many more. To really see stars, you have to go outside the city. The mountains of New Mexico are a good star watching spot. Best night of star watching I ever had was on the way to Lincoln, NM. We pulled off the road and laid on the fenders and just looked. Ghost Ranch in NM is another good spot. The Milky Way is so close and so bright you can almost feel it.
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When I had surgery my grandson gave me a get well card. All it said was kick some ass. It was an inspiring message and I tried to be a kick ass patient during my recovery. I think it worked. Kicking ass isn’t just about being an action star in a violent movie. It’s about being a leader, a voice, an organizer and and example. Go kick some ass.
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Last night I ate a Mozartkugel, a Austrian/German confection I’d never heard of before. Someone brought it to book club for the discussion of “The Afterlife of Stars.” It set me to thinking about favorite candy that I’ve loved. Chocolate has always been the favorite, changing over the years from gooey sweetness like Mounds bars to the darkest of dark chocolates I love now. Now I happily down the 85% cocoa bars that I would have found bitter as a younger person.
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