City Life

City Life
Is very different from life in the suburbs

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Note: This blog was written in October 2018.

Hurrying out to work this morning, I almost collided with two wildly enthusiastic dogs who had escaped their fence. With my dog watching anxiously from the living room window, I managed to check their tags, and with the aid of dog biscuits, coax them back to their surprised owner.

City life is not static.

The evening before I found evidence of a mouse in the house. Exasperated, I told my housemate that I was off to buy traps and would return shortly.

We live on the non-historic side of Historic Old Knoxville.  I turned left onto Woodland to hit Fellini Kroger or Ace Hardware in the Knoxville Shopping Center. Rain had started to fall.

Right before Fulton High School, I saw a woman, on crutches, walking on the side of the street. I turned around and asked her if she needed a ride, or was she just out for a walk in the rain on crutches. (I know, but it fit the moment.)

She looked startled, then smiled and said she sure would appreciate it. She wanted to get to a bus stop to catch a ride to her apartment out near the Fountain City Duck Pond. “Easy enough,” I said so we headed that way.

Ally had just left Tennova, or what used to be St. Mary’s. She had gone to the emergency room the night before and was diagnosed with pneumonia. Then given fluids, breathing treatments, antibiotics and a discharge. She is on crutches after her leg was messed up in a bad car accident several years ago. She has had four surgeries and is looking at another one. Her boyfriend was working and couldn’t pick her up. We both love dogs and believe pit bulls get a bad rap.

She asked if I would mind dropping her off at the Sonic; she was starving to death and could get something to eat and then go to Kroger’s to get her prescription filled. I offered to take her, but she said no thanks. After four years she was pretty good at getting around on crutches.

I decided to go to the big, fancy Kroger’s since I was right there. The only mousetraps they carry are ones that have the sticky pad so I scurried back to my own stomping grounds.

The Fellini Kroger’s is noted for oddball customers and funky happenings. I really like it. Great customer service ninety per cent of the time. Not as wide a selection as some others, but very convenient.

You learn to navigate the parking lot, which has an above average number of people down on their luck, plus a bunch of career scammers. I have made my peace with how I handle requests. That is how I met Joe.

I was getting in my car when he approached, asking for money. He said he hadn’t eaten in three days. I said I didn’t give money but would take him into Kroger’s for a deli meal or to Taco Bell. He chose Taco Bell, just two soft shell tacos and water. I did add a burrito supreme without knowing if he liked them or not–to make my bleeding heart feel good?

We sat there waiting for the food and he told me he did get a check but had been robbed, and now had to make it to the end of the month. He asked me if I wanted to buy a cell phone and charger. He had slept outside in the rain the night before.

I asked if he had tried going to KARM or VMC. I mentioned under the bridge and he said he wouldn’t go there. I told him I just meant people did bring food there on the weekends. He said he had heard there was going to be bbq at the bank on the corner and he was going to get some of that. Wishing each other well, we shook hands and I left.

No, city life is not static.

Not Today

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Please don’t make me get up today.

Don’t make me face the drama or lack of

Don’t ask me to be of use to others

Don’t look for wise food choices from me

Don’t think that just because I know better I will do better

Just for today let me wallow in a state of nothingness

Let me neglect myself and by doing naught for myself do nothing for others

OK

I have taken a deep breath and girded my loins

Thank you for this day

May I be open to all the opportunities that come my way

 

Exactly and precisely…as you are

Last week I was with Max, my youngest grandson who is turning 18 on March 15. I was admiring him from behind and made the idle remark that I didn’t know if the back of his head looked like his dad’s or his Uncle Stephen’s. He turned and in an exasperated tone said, “Why can’t it just look like my head?” 

I felt his frustration at my remark. I hugged him and assured him that his head was his precious own.

It was a reminder to me of how often my words sound as though I am not satisfied with someone. I am guilty of uttering such remarks many more times than I should, to him and to all the people I love.

Feb 19, 1968, was the date for the first episode on PBS of Mister Rogers Neighborhood. May you enjoy being yourself today.1-IMG_1980

 I Like You As You Are

Lyrics by Josie Carey | Music by Fred Rogers


I like you as you are
Exactly and precisely
I think you turned out nicely
And I like you as you are

I like you as you are
Without a doubt or question
Or even a suggestion
Cause I like you as you are

I like your disposition
Your facial composition
And with your kind permission
I’ll shout it to a star

I like you as you are
I wouldn’t want to change you
Or even rearrange you
Not by far

I like you
I-L-I-K-E-Y-O-U
I like you, yes I do
I like you, Y-O-U
I like you, like you as you are

 

 

Revisiting Old Resolutions

IMG_2094 As 2018 dawned someone asked me how I had done on the resolutions I posted two years ago. Here they are, followed by my thoughts on where I stand with them today.

  • keep in my heart the joy and love I felt during Christmas 2015.
  • to push myself when inertia engulfs me.
  • to use my talents.
  • to squeeze more laughter out.
  • to connect to the positive energy around me.
  • to remind myself that one person’s actions can make a difference.
  • to be ready to listen rather than speak.
  • to spend minimum time wondering why I can’t remember someone’s name.
  • to lie in the grass on a spring day.
  • to accept the things I cannot change.
  • to relish my children.
  • to sweat only the big stuff.
  • to practice those exercises so I can remember people’s names.
  • to build on honoring myself as I honor others.
  • to ignore urges to overeat, overdrink, under exercise.
  • to keep a carrot-games, travel, books-in clear sight at all times.
  • After the name remembering exercises move on to “where did I put my…”

I probably feel best about moving towards positive energy and paying less attention to negative thoughts and people. I am happier with myself and more accepting of my lifestyle although I still have those times of doubting that drive me crazy.

The ones I have no difficulty with have to do with enjoyment. I have no problem enjoying anything that comes my way, as ridiculous or simple as it may be. And if it is something I can tell on myself, all the better.

I did scare myself when I almost didn’t publish my last post…”NOT Another Phone Story!!!” Because I see the incident described, not as just misplacing glasses, but not recognizing my glasses. That’s why I thought others would hmmmmm and tilt their heads after reading it. Even with my friend’s scoffing at this, I hesitated to record it.

I  still think it is deeper than losing glasses on top of my head BUT no matter. I’ll just add a new one:

  • to push through the fear.