Archive for September, 2014

Hope Springs Eternal

September 30, 2014

          I had lunch with a friend this morning. She told me about an officemate of hers who criticized my friend’s office as “unprofessional” as decided by a by a bank employee who came around taking pictures. My friend responded but the other person kept arguing. My friend used a stern voice to end the argument. Of course the whole incident about the bank judging their office was a total lie. No one from a bank had been to the office. Still, my friend came in the next day with some flowers and an apology for her stern manner. The officemate refused the flowers and the apology, saying they did not have a relationship so it couldn’t be repaired. I was aghast at this story which my friend related calmly. A while later in our conversation she spoke of this woman in a positive light. I asked her how she could forgive so easily, but she shrugged it off. My friend epitomizes “hope springs eternal.”

As I age, I know as a single person I am one fall away from assisted living. I could live in fear, especially because I am a clumsy oaf who falls at least every other month, but I choose to be an optimist, thinking that my fat helps me bounce right up.

I have an errant son. Last week he got out of jail after four months of incarceration. He chose o return to Phoenix and go directly into rehab. He’s been battling addiction for nine years. I’m so glad that he sees hope. He told me, “I don’t deserve another chance. I’m determined to do it this time and become a sober, self-supporting adult.” What music to my ears! I’m cautiously optimistic. I can give him moral support but I have to step back and let him find his own hope. He knows, however, that if he comes up short I’ll always love him but I won’t include him in my life.

I’ve always been an optimist. Is this an inborn trait? Certainly I’ve had tragedies in my life and sometimes people wonder at my ability to have a smile on my face. Perhaps because terrible things have happened I feel it has to better going forward. And my mother, when she was dealing with dementia, taught me to savor each moment. Maybe that’s why I’m into nature photography now. I want to savor the beauty and take a picture to remind myself of it later.

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So as you’re looking at a glass of water, do you see it as half empty or half full? Do you allow hope in?

Check out my books Reinvented Lives and As One Door Closes, available on

Recycling as a Dating Term

September 14, 2014

           I recycle cans, glass, and paper. Last week I had to decide whether to recycle a date. I do know a woman who recycled among three men. After doing this at least twice around with each and marrying one of them, she wound up with someone else.

Four years ago I had a date with a computer engineer named Jay. We met at The Vig, an “in” bar in Phoenix. He got there early and managed to snag a booth. We shared some wine and appetizers and talked. He had spent years overseas working on various projects. I talked about my time in China with Global Volunteers. We clicked and there was definitely. chemistry. His good night kiss was passionate and let me know he felt the vibes, too. A few days later I got an email from him saying that he was going to try to make it work with his ex-girlfriend. I thanked him for his honesty and that was it.

A year later he contacted me and asked to take me out for a drink. I was a bit leery, but I accepted and chose a place near my home, Humble Pie. As we talked I found out he was unemployed, a no-no in my book. He assured me he would be getting big checks for unemployment because he had had a high-powered job in Pennsylvania. He asked me to go to a Christmas Eve party with him and I agreed. I should have known better than to g o out with a non-Jewish guy on Christmas Eve. Why wasn’t he spending it with his grown daughters or close friends?

He called the afternoon of Christmas Eve to say that he hadn’t received any unemployment money yet and so he couldn’t afford the tickets for the party. But he had gone online and bought a great deal for dinner at The Golden Buddha. My gut told me to cancel the date, but I’m too nice a person to renege. We ate a scrumptious dinner, but he was quite down in the dumps. When the check came, the restaurant wouldn’t honor the gift certificate so I paid for dinner. By that time all I wanted to do was escape from his gloom. I didn’t go out with him again.

            Last week I got an email from him, wondering how I was and if I was still at the same AOL address. (I’ve had the same email address forever.) He wrote that that he had often thought of me (he spelled you yiu) and the amazing connection he felt, I wrote back, with trepidation, saying I was fine and that I’d just finished a novel. He answered me with three emails. He must have written several women. One had my message but with an extra line “I miss yui.” Where did that come from? He also answered, “I am fine.” And in the last one he said, “I am missing you, pretty lady.” I’m not going to write him again. Most guys I’ve dated are better left in the past. This is one area in which I’ve decided not to recycle.

Check out my books Reinvented Lives and As One Door Closes, available on


September 1, 2014

            It’s Labor Day and the exodus begins. Weekenders try to plan their exits to experience the least bumper-to-bumper traffic on the freeway back to the Valley of the Sun. I do feel sorry for them, driving back to triple-digit temperatures. Oh well, JABDIP (Just Another Beautiful Day in Paradise)

            What I don’t understand is how few of these people come back for the rest of September and the month of October. I know Zumba and Tai Chi are over as well as the Lady Putters and cards at the club end in September. Karaoke and Happy Hour will cease soon. The Pinewood Players take a break after September 7, when my play “Brownies” premieres at Cabaret Nights. I did pick the last apples off my tree but the flowers in my garden are still blooming.

These are the best months of the year in Munds Park. While people and cars are still sizzling I am putting on the flannel sheets for the cool nights while enjoying walks in the woods with daytime highs in the seventies. There isn’t much wind and not too much rain. I get to enjoy autumn. Although the pine trees don’t turn colors, the maples, oaks, aspens, and many others do. It reminds me of my childhood in New Jersey except no one has to rake the leaves and burning piles of them is forbidden. Did you ever jump into piles of leaves or slosh through them? I loved it at the end of fall, when the leaves were crunchy and brown. I stomped on them to savor the sound.

            By the beginning of October it is a bit nippy in the mornings. Luckily my dogs sleep longer since sunrise is later. It isn’t hard to conserve energy. I put the bedroom heater on a half hour before I retire for the night. I turn it off upon arising and turn on the living room wall heaters so the room will be toasty when the dogs and I return from our walk. I do have a wall heater in the bathroom that makes taking a shower a delight. Note to self: remember to get a new electric blanket. The old one only works on the dogs’ side of the bed.

Bundled up for a morning walk

Bundled up for a morning walk

I’ve included a selfie of what I look like on a cold winter morning this past April. I’ll look the same come Med-October. JABDIP!