Sunday, August 31, 2008

Sunday, 31 August 2008 - More laughter

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for more laughter.

We join M, his parents and brother for dinner at a favorite Thai restaurant. M's father and S are expert storytellers and willingly entertain us for a few hours. We smile and laugh as they tell funny stories and share quirky observations of the world at large.

Before going to bed, I wash my face as usual. I glance in the mirror and for once, actually like what I see. I think I look younger, even without makeup. Must be the laughter ... my own.

(Note to self: laugh more.)

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Saturday, August 30, 2008

Saturday, 30 August 2008 - The end of a difficult phase

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for the end of a difficult phase.

If I had my life to live over ...
I would have invited friends over to dinner
even if the carpet was stained and the sofa faded.

~Erma Bombeck

A house that does not have one worn, comfy chair in it is soulless. ~May Sarton

Yes, I am finally over "my home is unfit for company" phase. I open the front door and let friends enter.

They already know, anyway.

My home, far from House Beautiful perfect, reflects my unbalanced and uncertain life, perfectly.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Friday, August 29, 2008

Friday, 29 August 2008 - Three good books

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for three good books.

Recently, a "fan," interested in my reading list, asked me to recommend a few books. Fortunately, I've been reading more than cooking, gardening and knitting texts and offered three interesting titles. These books were so good (in my opinion, at least) that I could not put them down and read them straight through into the early morning hours.
  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon (fiction)
  • Swallow the Ocean by Laura M. Flynn (memoir)
  • Listen by Wendy Salinger (memoir)
For this blessing, I am grateful.


Thursday, August 28, 2008

Thursday, 28 August 2008 - First fruits

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for first fruits.

I don't know why, but I am elated when I discover the first evidence of anything edible in my garden. It doesn't matter what grew last year.

The year's first fruits are always a welcomed sight. They prove that, despite environmental challenges and my incessant complaints and worries, I've succeeded.

Here it is, the end of August. Some of my prized edible plants are finally bearing fruit. Finally!

I'm especially pleased to see the sungold cherry tomatoes, eggplants, jalapeno and mariachi peppers, mint and basil doing so well despite the late date. Now I'm praying for one more month of intense sunshine to guarantee the harvest.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Photo: The season's first ripe sungold cherry tomato is a sight for my sore eyes.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Wednesday, 27 August 2008 - Another redpoint

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for another redpoint.

S, T and I are climbing on the Solar Slab at Red Rock Canyon. One route, an athletic 5.10a, challenges me every time I attempt it. In fact, I have yet to redpoint it (i.e., climb it cleanly) - I always manage to slip on the crux.

During my first attempt, I again struggle on the crux. The hand and footholds are very small and smooth so if I don't move precisely, if I don't balance perfectly, I'll fall. I map a possible route over the crux but can't link the moves successfully. I fall, regroup, and try again. I eventually finish the climb, glad that it's over but unhappy about my mistakes.

After S completes his climb, I get my second chance. During this attempt, I approach the crux thoughtfully, carefully considering my intended path, rehearsing the movement series before I begin it. This time, on a warm August afternoon that wears just a hint of autumn, I get my redpoint. S agrees that it's my best climb of the season.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Tuesday, 26 August 2008 - Good neighbor deeds

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for good neighbor deeds.

One of our young friends confesses that whenever her school has a fundraiser, she regards me as her top prospect. She knows that I will listen to her spiel, ask questions about the purpose for the fundraiser and, most importantly, buy something. This time, she's selling Entertainment Books.

Personally, I don't know why our public schools burden young students with fundraising responsibilities. They probably count on the parents and relatives making purchases.

Selling door-to-door is a daunting activity for anyone, let alone children. I remember my own unpleasant selling experiences. Most neighbors answered the door and listened to my spiel. But, in the end, very few bought anything.

So, many years ago, S and I resolved to be good neighbors and do our best to support student activities. If this meant buying magazine subscriptions, tubs of cookie dough, boxes of candy or coupon books, then so be it.

In doing so, I know that we are helping even the shyest children write a small but significant success story, building their confidence in dealing with adults and showing that we care about them and their future.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Monday, August 25, 2008

Monday, 25 August 2008 - A return to normalcy

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for a return to normalcy.

Now that the Beijing Olympics are finally over, our lives can return to normal. Well, as normal as things can be around here with the Democratic National Convention convening in Denver, the US Open Tennis Championship underway, the Vuelta a Espana (tour of Spain cycling race) set to begin on Saturday and the start of football season ... collegiate, high school, middle school and pro.

Sports and politics. We'll be living and dying both for the next few months. How normal is that!

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Sunday, August 24, 2008

Sunday, 24 August 2008 - An August climbing adventure ... finally!

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for an August climbing adventure ... finally!

The mid-summer monsoons delighted my gardens but ruined our August rock climbing schedule. So, today's adventure in Red Rock Canyon is a welcome one.

Two Air Force Academy cadets join S, T and me - M, who climbs with us whenever he can, and his friend, A, who is sport climbing for the first time.

Yes, the nearly six-hour session is busy, very tiring and lots of fun. An incoming storm alarms us. Fortunately, it brings only sporadic thunder and lightening - no show-stopping rain, this time.

The four of us take turns climbing and belaying (yes, even I take my turn belaying the 6-foot tall, 185 pound climbers). Twenty-five pitches later, S finally takes down the ropes. We carefully repack our gear before heading slowly down the trail.

T is the only one with any reserve energy. He sees the return hike as his chance to sniff, mark and jog to his heart's content. I can't keep up with T (I fell twice due his fast pace down the steepest part of the trail) so I hand S the leash. Back at the truck, M takes T on a bonus hike up the steep trail to the east (one of T's favorites).

I think I know of at least one chocolate Labrador retriever who will sleep very well tonight.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Photo: While we climb, T chews on scrub oak bushes.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Saturday, 23 August 2008 - Laughter

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for laughter.

Remember, men need laughter sometimes more than food.
~Anna Fellows Johnston

A rare dinner out with friends. The food is delicious, European-inspired, exquisite flavors and just right portions. But, the food is a minor detail because Brenda is seated at the table. The day's gloom vanished the moment she walked into the lobby and said hello. And, her wonderful laugh. Contagious, of course.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Friday, August 22, 2008

Friday, 22 August 2008 - A change in scenery

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for a change in scenery.

Inspiration is wonderful when it happens, but the writer must develop an approach for the rest of the time ... The wait is simply too long. ~Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990)

I'm struggling with writer's block again. My strategy between those rare inspirational moments is to keep on writing, one word after another.

S wants to go bouldering later this afternoon at Ute Valley Park. I'm sure that a change in scenery will do me good, that the act of climbing large boulders will anchor some of my ideas and thoughts in a well-written sentence or poem.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thursday, 21 August 2008 - A way out

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for a way out.

The best way out is always through. ~Robert Frost

So, I've taken Robert Frost's road not taken many times and not regretted my decisions. Now, I will follow his advice and walk through - through this storm, through this desert, through this forest. I hope the way out is a well lit path and the exit sign, close by.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Wednesday, 20 August 2008 - Another gardening lesson

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for another gardening lesson.

The watering of a garden requires as much judgment as the seasoning of soup. ~Helena Rutherford Ely

Another gardening lesson: The art of watering involves knowing just how much and exactly when. Plants, even xeric ones, need adequate water to thrive. In arid Colorado, a little goes a long way.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Photos: The recent spell of cool, rainy weather has revived the backyard. Looks like S will have to mow the native grass lawn for only the second time this season.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Tuesday, 19 August 2008 - Hindsight

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for hindsight.

To look backward for a while is to refresh the eye, to restore it, and to render it the more fit for its prime function of looking forward. ~Margaret Fairless Barber, The Roadmender

20-20 hindsight.
If only I knew then what I know now.

I glance backward for clues, an understanding, a new truth. Then, intrigued by what I see, I ask why this and that happened instead of something else, but reach no conclusion. I painstakingly dissect good and bad decisions, analyzing to death their tiny fragments.

I replay major themes and find new lyrics sung to the same old tune. I sense overt warning signs, detect subtle first hints and relive embarrassing slaps in the face. I find a fragrant rose here, a sunny daffodil there and bothersome weeds everywhere.

I succeed. I fail. I grieve. I reconsider. I learn. Then, I decide to move on. Sometimes willingly, other times reluctantly. Destination, unknown or nebulous at best. But at least I move on.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Monday, August 18, 2008

Monday, 18 August 2008 - More courage

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for more courage.

We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us. ~Joseph Campbell

I've given up planning my life. Well, not entirely. I still need to plan a little. Just enough so I can get through the day. Just far ahead so my weekly grocery list makes sense. But, not so much that I damage dreams and relinquish hope.

But letting go completely. That's a real challenge. To get rid of a planned life and welcome destiny. I don't know if I have the courage to do it.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Sunday, 17 August 2008 - A repaired fence

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for a repaired fence.

When a brown bear toppled the same section of fence a few years ago, he/she tore the gate from its hinges and broke two posts. S spent a full weekend digging out the old posts, setting new ones in concrete and building a new gate.

Last night or early this morning, the bear merely ripped the section from the posts. And, despite the rain, S repaired the damage in less than a hour. Now, T is safe and sound again in his fenced yard.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Saturday, August 16, 2008

Saturday, 16 August 2008 - Impossible dreams

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for impossible dreams. Like Lance Armstrong winning the Tour de France for seven consecutive years and, now, Michael Phelps winning eight Olympic gold medals in Beijing.

The impossible can always be broken down into possibilities. ~Author Unknown

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Friday, August 15, 2008

Friday, 15 August 2008 - Dara Torres

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for Dara Torres.

U.S. Olympic swimmer, Dara Torres, inspires me with her "dreams have no age limit" message. At age 41, she consistently beats women half her age.

As an athlete, I will never be in her league. But, I can do my best with what I have - some natural talent, fitness, determination and passion.

When I took up rock climbing two years ago at age 52, I knew I had a lot to prove to myself. The sport clearly attracts teens, not baby boomers.

Still, I think I've done all right given my late start. Not exceptional according to the world's standards, but good enough for me.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Thursday, August 14, 2008

Thursday, 14 August 2008 - Passing grades

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for passing grades.

A bad grade is only one letter in the Essay of Life. ~Lee Drake

For the young people in our neighborhood, school begins in a few days. Whenever we get the chance, S, T and I encourage them to study hard and exploit their diverse talents. I'm excited to see what amazing things our young friends will accomplish in the classroom, on the field or in the studio. And, of course, I want them to pass all their classes!

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Wednesday, 13 August 2008 - Bread pudding

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for bread pudding.

When I think of bread pudding, I think about my business trips to New Orleans. When I dined alone, I often feasted on a regional meal of salad, French bread, boiled crawfish and bread pudding with whiskey sauce.

Yesterday, anticipating another baking adventure, I made an extra loaf of French bread. Today, I decide to make bread pudding based on a Mark Bittman recipe.

My recipe combines day-old French bread, half and half, eggs, real maple syrup, homemade vanilla extract, ground cinnamon, ground ginger and sliced almonds. Layer the bread in a large baking dish. Whisk together the remaining ingredients (except the almonds) and pour over the bread. Let soak for about 5 minutes. Sprinkle almonds over the top. Drizzle additional maple syrup over the almonds. Bake. Serve hot from the oven, warm, at room temperature or cold from the refrigerator.

This bread pudding is rich and flavorful, light (i.e., not soggy), not too sweet. The top crust sports toasted almonds glazed with maple syrup. The bread is moist and creamy yet firm, the flavors - maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger - delicate and complex. Better, I think, than the bread puddings I enjoyed in New Orleans.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Tuesday, 12 August 2008 - Mid-summer monsoons

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for mid-summer monsoons.

They're here, right on schedule. I didn't expect them this year, given the ongoing drought. So, while T did his rain sleep, I prayed extra hard for moisture, knowing the storms would spoil our rock climbing adventures.

O Lord, grant that in some way it may rain every day, say from about midnight until three o'clock in the morning, but, you see, it must be gentle and warm so that it can soak in; grant that at the same time it would not rain on campion, alyssum, heliaanthemum, lavender, and the others which you in your infinite wisdom know are drought loving plants - I will write their names on a paper if you like - and grant that the sun may shine the whole day long, but not everywhere (not for instance, on spiraea, or on gentian, plantain lily, and rhododendron), and not too much; that there may be plenty of dew and little wind, enough worms, no plant-lice and snails, no mildew, and that once a week thin liquid manure and guano may fall from heaven. Amen.
- Karel Capek, The Gardener's Year, 1929

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Monday, August 11, 2008

Monday, 11 August 2008 - Shopping choices

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for shopping choices.

Fresh popcorn is our snack of choice ... hot, lightly drizzled with oil, salted. So, when our popper suddenly died, I immediately looked for a new one.

The last time we replaced the appliance, I discovered that Wal-Mart was the only local store that carried the highly-rated Presto model we preferred. On any given day, I avoid Wal-Mart like the plague. But, that year, I reluctantly bit the bullet and shopped at Wal-Mart.

This time, I was willing to give Wal-Mart about $20.00 worth of business, mainly for expediency's sake. Then Wal-Mart blundered, big time.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Wal-Mart told its employees not to vote for Barack Obama (whose candidacy I support) and other pro-worker candidates who support the Employee Free Choice Act. Electioneering is a corporate no-no.

Anyway, with my trip to Wal-Mart cancelled, I ordered a new Presto popcorn popper on (had to buy a book to earn free shipping, but I'm not complaining). Both items should arrive in about a week. Will be well worth the wait.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Sunday, August 10, 2008

Sunday, 10 August 2008 - Bread

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for bread.

Stale bread is not hard; what is hard is to live without bread.
~Paul Claudel, French poet (1868-1955)

Bread, in Egyptian Arabic, is called aish, which literally means life, rather than khobz, the word that other Arab-speakers use. The word reflects the centrality of bread here. This is a culture of bread, not rice, not meat and potatoes, not humus.
~International Herald Tribune, 1.16.08

There are days when I'm sure that I could survive on a diet of bread and water. Of course, the bread must be my own, the water, purified.

I've been making bread for over two years, ever since the local bakery again raised the price on its baguettes. I bought a secondhand breadmaking machine on eBay for around $25.00 and quickly recouped the cost. Fortunately, organic flour, salt, sugar and yeast remain affordable.

Our enduring favorites are Italian focaccio and classic French bread. The focaccio was an instant success. The French bread, however, was not as easy to master especially at high altitude. No matter how I altered the basic recipe, I could not duplicate the crusty baguettes that we love.

About a week ago, I finally discovered the "secret" to making perfect French bread at altitude - bread flour. Now my French bread recipe - tweaked and tested - is my new masterpiece. It consistently produces loaves that are crusty on the outside, moist and chewy on the inside. Each bite reveals just a hint of salt. Perfect!

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Saturday, August 09, 2008

Saturday, 09 August 2008 - A neighborhood lifeline

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for a neighborhood lifeline.

I'm adding another name to the list of people for whom I wear a yellow LiveStrong wristband. She's a neighbor's mother - early 60s, recently diagnosed with cancer of the appendix (a very rare type).

I'm glad K told me about her mother. Neighbors, though not technically family, appreciate learning about another's personal crisis and struggle. Yes, we share common physical ground. But, an emotional lifeline also runs around the block, linking one house to the next whether we like it or not.

In the end, we don't want to meddle in each other's affairs (our own problems are enough). But, we do want to comfort, lend a hand, pray and make leaps of faith for each other.

Sadness. That's what I feel as I add K's mother to my list. This year's reports of ill or lost loved ones cast a long shadow over my path. At 54, I barely know how to live. When my time is finally up, I wonder if I will know how to die.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Friday, August 08, 2008

Friday, 08 August 2008 - The Olympics

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for the Olympics.

Olympics - a lifetime of training for just ten seconds. ~Jessie Owens

Champions aren't made in the gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them - a desire, a dream, a vision. ~Muhammed Ali

We've waited four years for the Beijing Summer Olympics. Now, they're finally here. Let the games begin!

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Thursday, August 07, 2008

Thursday, 07 August 2008 - Summer monsoons

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for summer monsoons.

I feel Mother Nature's compassionate heart. After all, she's sent the summer monsoons my way. Good timing, too. Yes, I could water my thirsty garden more frequently. But, the plants prefer the taste of rainwater.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Photo: A raindrop-adorned spiderweb

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Wednesday, 06 August 2008 - A remembrance

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for a remembrance.

As the bomb fell over Hiroshima and exploded, we saw an entire city disappear. I wrote in my log the words: "My God, what have we done?"
~Captain Robert Lewis, co-pilot of the U.S. Air Force bomber Enola Gay that dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, on Aug 6, 1945, instantly killing at least 117,000 people

Most days, I don't consider my Japanese heritage. But two days a year, I do: August 6, the anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, and December 7, Pearl Harbor Day.

On August 6, I remember JM, a former colleague's mother, who, by a strange quirk of fate, survived the bombing of Hiroshima.

A working girl, JM was chronically tardy. But on August 6, 1945, she arrived at the office early to make-up for lost time.

When the atom bomb hit the city at 8:15 AM, she was already working in the library's concrete-encased basement. The basement acted like a bomb shelter, absorbing the impact and minimizing radiation exposure.

At 8:15 AM on any other workday, JM, late as usual, would still be sitting on the crowded commuter train as it neared the main Hiroshima station.

Hiroshima marks A-bombing
The Yomiuri Shimbun

HIROSHIMA--About 45,000 people attended a memorial ceremony Wednesday at the Peace Memorial Park here to mark the 63rd anniversary of the 1945 U.S. atomic bombing of the city.

Hiroshima Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba said in a peace declaration that the majority of the world wants to abolish nuclear weapons as shown by the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty signed by about 190 states.

"All we need is the strong will and capacity to act to guard the future for our children," he said during the ceremony, which began at 8 a.m.

With music playing to console the spirits of the victims, the names of 5,302 hibakusha (atomic bomb victims) who died during the past year--or whose deaths were confirmed--were added by Akiba and representatives of bereaved families to the Cenotaph for the A-bomb Victims at the park, bringing the total number of victims to 258,310, recorded in 93 books.

Representatives of atomic bomb survivors, Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda and representatives from a record 55 countries, including first-time participant China, offered flowers to the cenotaph.

At 8:15 a.m., the time when the bomb detonated over the city, two representatives of the bereaved families tolled the Peace Bell, followed by a minute of silent prayer for the victims.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Tuesday, 05 August 2008 - Baking weather

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for baking weather.

This morning's unseasonably cool temperature means two things: T will enjoy his walk and I get to bake.

No matter the season, I try to follow this energy-saving rule: whenever I use the oven, I must bake more than one item.

Today, three's the charm: one sour cream pineapple streusel coffee cake, one large foccacia laced with olive oil and one platter of spicy cottage fries (need to use up the Yukon gold potatoes).

The only problem with baking is that S and I have to eat the products. I'm not worried about the foccacia and fries. But, the 9"x 13" calorie-rich coffee cake made with two cups of sour cream and six eggs is another story.

Just when I decide to share it with a neighbor, S announces that M, our Air Force Academy cadet, is free for the rest of the day and wants to spend the evening with us. Classes begin on Thursday, so tonight may be the last time we see him for several weeks.

M arrives just as thunderstorms invade the region. Rock climbing is now out of the question. So, he does laundry and hangs out with T.

Back in the kitchen, I'm glad that I baked the bread and coffeecake this morning - they round out our dinner of grilled salmon topped with homemade tomatillo salsa, sweet corn on the cob and steamed broccoli.

The coffeecake's the real star (I originally thought it might be too "grown up" for a 20-year-old). M, however, eats three large pieces and takes another back to the dorm, leaving just enough for S and I to share for tomorrow's breakfast.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Monday, August 04, 2008

Monday, 04 August 2008 - Unknown territory

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for unknown territory.

It is a basic principle of spiritual life that we learn the deepest things in unknown territory. Often, it is when we feel most confused inwardly and are in the midst of our greatest difficulties that something new will open. We awaken most easily to the mystery of life through our weakest side. The areas of our greatest strength, where we are the most competent and clearest, tend to keep us away from the mystery. ~Jack Kornfield

I think the "powers that be" are trying to tell me something. For the second time in the past week, someone has sent me a gift quote.

I ponder the idea of "unknown territory," trying to define its boundaries, describe its landscape, imagine its majesty, test its magic.

Physical unknown territories are easy to describe. A precipice, perhaps, as deep as the Grand Canyon or a craggy peak that rivals Mount Everest. Maybe a barren desert or moonscape that stretches from here to the distant horizon, shadowed, void of familiar lifeforms. Or an intriguing city, like Paris or Tokyo, awaiting my next arrival.

But, the quote's unknown territory, well, it's harder to define. But I know what it is - intuition, emptiness, gut reaction, raw nerve, sixth sense, pit in my stomach, heartache. My spiritual life's private battleground, schoolroom, playground.

Gain access not through competency and worldly success but through my weakest side, the one built of vulnerability, fear, anger, failure and confusion. Then, stay awhile. Visit and explore. Dig and discover. Remain as long as it takes to reach an understanding, to learn a new truth, to restore an ounce of faith, to unveil the mystery. Then, exit quietly through the passage marked epiphany and serendipity.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Sunday, August 03, 2008

Sunday, 03 August 2008 - Ten fewer degrees

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for ten fewer degrees.

Not much to say except to report that it's at least ten degrees cooler today.

Funny how comfortable 90 degrees feels when you've survived 100 degree temperatures for the past few days. This year, our usually tolerable Colorado summer is one continuous hot flash with no relief in sight.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Saturday, August 02, 2008

Saturday, 02 August 2008 - Mystery and unexpected guests

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for mystery and unexpected guests.

Let mystery have its place in you; do not be always turning up your whole soil with the plowshare of self-examination, but leave a little fallow corner in your heart for any seed the winds may bring ... Keep a place in your heart for the unexpected guests, an altar for the unknown God. ~Henri Frederic Amiel

This quote arrived unexpectedly the other day. A gift of sorts. After reading the words and pondering their meaning, I know that I am guilty, as accused.

When it comes to my plowshare of self-examination, I repeatedly turn up my whole soil and work it to death with self-talk that is too critical, too controlling and too demanding.

So, just as I do with my outdoor gardens, I must find an inner space where I can readily plant new seeds. Probably a small piece of my weary heart. A fitting altar to my God.

Then, I must keep the plot fertile and fresh, ready to accept seeds of change, joy or opportunity that blow my way on uncertain winds.

Only then will I gladly welcome unexpected guests into my life. Only then will mystery have its place in me.

For this blessing, I am grateful.


Friday, August 01, 2008

Friday, 01 August 2008 - Anonymity

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for anonymity.

When I run errands, I'm usually an anonymous figure. A task-oriented shopper, I slip in and out of stores, libraries, gas stations and post offices like a person on a mission - efficient, quiet and focused. That's just the way I like it.

Although I very rarely meet anyone I know or engage strangers in long conversations, I am not asocial. I do chat casually with other customers while waiting in line at the cashier's station or fabric cutting table. I remember to ask a favorite store or library clerk about his or her day. And, I always wish anyone who crosses my path a good day.

For this blessing, I am grateful.