I’m ashamed to say that I am without a story to share here today.
Nor do I have any research projects in process so I don’t have any little tidbits of information to toss into the blog.
I’m not feeling sad or snarky or silly, so there’s no blog post to be plumbed from those emotions.
Instead, I have blogger’s block, a specific kind of writer’s block wherein a personal blogger, such a meself, has the photo and the time to write about it, but can’t find the inspiration, the catalyst, the spark one needs to create the blog post.
There is no flapdoodle. There is no twaddle.
And I am bereft.
I place the blame for this unusual blogging situation squarely on the shoulders of Muse who has scampered off, probably to play on the swings in the park.
I’m sure you, my gentle readers, understand this situation. Muse is, after all, a flighty thing. 😉
“The world is a book. If you do not travel, you read only a page.”
The above quote, that I see every day when I’m at home, is on a framed piece of artwork that I have hanging on a wall in our home office.
I only mention this quote, attributed to St. Augustine, because I believe it to be true, a guiding principle. Thus I said “hell to the yes” when I had the opportunity to spend a few days in pleasant and pretty San Antonio, TX.
You see, last week Zen-Den was in San Antonio for a conference. Remembering how much fun we had there years ago, I joined him after the conference was over and we goofed off for a couple of days doing things in America’s 7th largest city that is celebrating its 300th birthday.
[Did not know either of those facts before visiting there. Feel that I’m a better person for having shared them here.]
THINGS WE DID
• The San Antonio River Walk which is a meandering multi-level path around an urban waterway surrounded by restaurants, shops, and hotels.
• The Briscoe Western Art Museum which was beautiful, and wherein I saw Roy Rogers’s saddle, a real Wells Fargo Wagon, and ate a complimentary cupcake.
• The Alamo Quarry Market which is an open-air shopping area filled with stores and restaurants, not necessarily unique to San Antonio but a nice place to wander around in the warm sunshine.
• The San Antonio Zoo which was lovely, with more animals from South America, Australia, and Africa than any other zoo I’ve been to.
• The Alamo City Comic Con which was our first adventure into the happy, trippy subculture that revolves around comic conventions. Here are my observations: 1) people, often entire families, were costumed like comic book or TV or movie characters [we were not]; 2) people were standing in line waiting to pay to have photos taken with and/or objects signed by celebrities [we did not]; & 3) people were buying memorabilia and posters and t-shirts from the displays set up by many vendors [we did not].
And with that I’ll end this post with a hat tip to St. Augustine and his travel advice, suggesting to you, my gentle readers, that San Antonio, TX, is a fun + friendly place to visit for those of you inclined to want to read more than one page of this book we call the world.
He was 89 years old, diabetic, and had Alzheimer’s, the long good-bye.
His funeral was a week ago Monday in the city where Zen-Den grew up, a 4 to 5 hour drive from here. We drove there on Sunday and came back later in the week.
The funeral wasn’t a sad or maudlin affair because the person FIL had become was nothing like the person he’d been in his prime; even then, in his better days he was a ‘hale fellow well met’ with some Archie Bunker thrown into the mix– stubbornly clinging to the past.
However, as is the way with people who suffer with Alzheimer’s, FIL deteriorated slowly, forgetting his resentments along the way. He became physically weak, and seemingly ready to leave this world.
The best part of the funeral was FIL’s 3-year-old step-great-granddaughter who stole the show. She was cheerful, of course. Dressed in a sundress + straw hat. Delightfully curious. So much so that at one point during the memorial service she went up front, quietly, to join the pastor, sitting her little self down on a chair nearby him to watch.
Which was cute– and a visual reminder that life goes on.
And on that positive note I’ll end this post. I’m not even sure why I’m telling you this, but some days, occasionally, I write here in a serious way as if this were my journal– instead of a personal blog filled with flapdoodle and twaddle.
I’m not known for being the most patient gardener.
Zen-Den is aware of this.
He often warns new plants in the garden that they’d better get with it *pronto* or that they’ll be pulled out, tossed aside, and added to The List Of Plants That Make Ally Bean Snarl.
This little sunflower should be on that list by now, having been given 6 weeks [six weeks!] to show its inclination to grow tall– say, for instance, 4 feet tall as promised on its little garden nursery tag.
But no, this particular little sunflower, that looks a great deal more like a basic Black-eyed Susan than a fancy Sunfinity Sunflower, is blooming but not growing tall– the specific reason I put it where it is.
I’m flummoxed because I like the little yellow sunflower.
It’s pretty, but its lack of vertical spunk, as shown by its refusal to grow tall has left me in a quandary. Usually by now I would’ve pulled the flower out of the garden line-up.
Adding it to The List Of Plants That Make Ally Bean Snarl.
However, I must be getting soft in my old age because I’ve allowed this little sunflower to stay where it is, deluded by the hope, sans evidence, that it’ll have a growth spurt.
Where is my snarl? Who have I become?
And more to the point, do I like this mellow iteration of Ally Bean the Gardener? Have I *somehow* transformed into a patient Mother Earth sort of person, guiding the world to gardening goodness?
Or is this just another sign of the kind of indifference that suggests old age and decrepitude? To a garden filled with overgrown or undergrown [a word?] plants and weeds, a garden untended because it’s too work-y to take care of it.
ON SUNDAY WHILE READING COMMENTS on tweets about the White House Correspondents’ Dinner with the mean lady who said the bad things [either Michelle Wolf or Sarah Huckabee Sanders depending on your point of view], I saw a comment that said: You spot it, you’ve got it.
The meaning of this new-to-me phrase was a surprise.
I thought it was going to mean that if you’re aware enough to notice that another person is behaving in a bad way [spot it], then you’ve got the situation covered so that this person won’t negatively affect you [got it].
I’VE BEEN THINKING ABOUT THIS phrase all week. There’s a truth to it, no doubt. But I dunno, here’s the thing.
Is it not possible that you notice hurtful behavior in other people because you’re an observant person who watches how other people behave and misbehave, thereby giving you insight into what makes someone else tick?
Just because I can spot what’s going on with someone else, doesn’t mean that I’m like that. I’d say it means that I’m perceptive and empathetic and tuned-in to the people around me.
I’ve no pithy conclusion here, other than to say that my assumed interpretation of this phrase was wrong.
And now I know better.
• • •
Questions of the Day:
Anyone ever hear this phrase before? Use it in polite conversation or in comments? How far out of the mainstream am I to not know what this means?