Monday, July 17, 2017

BIRTHDAY PARTY HINDSIGHT

Remember when we were kids and the best part of a birthday party, aside from the cake, was the loot bags we were given on our way home? Ah, loot bags. If my memory serves me correctly, there was always a direct correlation about the success of the party you’d just attended based on the loot you headed home with.

Well, after celebrating three July birthdays last Saturday night, I woke up Sunday morning to the sound of rain on our tent roof and an unusual throbbing of pain that led me to believe that I’d be heading home one hell of a "loot bag”.  The only difference being that I was blessed to receive it before I was ready to leave for home and it contained only a single piece of loot; a broken baby toe.

After my husband became mobile Sunday morning, I stayed in the tent and listened to the rain pour. In some serious pain, I couldn't help but reflect that there's so much truth to that saying, “it seemed like a really good idea at the time.” More often than not, when it comes to me being with a great bunch of people, amazing music, and jell-o shots circulating, I always tend to strike out in the foresight department. However, when it comes to hindsight, I always seem to score perfectly: 20/20.

The glow of orange jello-shots by the fire.
(...In the wee hours of the morn.)
TAKEN: JULY 15th or 16th, 2017
As a matter a fact, I would be lying if I didn't admit that I was generally confident that foresight wasn't going to show up when trays of colourful jell-o treats began being served and it was unanimously decided we all needed to go swimming.

So, with that decision being made, in the heat of that campfire moment, I felt the urge to take the picture I'm sharing. Primarily because it’s been at least a decade since I’d enjoyed these and secondly because I knew that things we’re going to graduate to the next level in a nano-second.

Though it seemed like harmless fun (getting into our swimming gear in the wee hours of the morning) it somehow escaped me that I was about to jump full force into a pool with no deep end. My poor baby toe didn't have a fighting chance in the breakage department. Hell, I think my ankle narrowly escaped!

As I went back and forth via text with an electronic friend today, they asked how my toe was. I was telling them that it’s been over a year since I have participated any type of these shenanigans. I also replied that I won’t be looking to jump on any type of a similar bandwagon for a very long time.

Anyway, I did admit that whenever I get myself into a situation like the one I did in the wee hours of Sunday morning, I always try to learn from the experience to avoid it in the future. So, in true Rhondi fashion, I replayed the accident over in my head and I have concluded that by changing one minor detail my poor toe could have been spared.

The minor detail wasn't enjoying the shots with my crew, nor by not getting into my bathing suit. My solution's much simpler than that. Midnight pool etiquette 101: This bitch should have simply done a kickass cannonball. 

See? Right there you have changed everything. Should I have had the gift of foresight in that moment, this crisis would have been completely averted!

Just sayin'.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

BAD LUCK OR LIFE LESSON?

For a very specific reason, at 5:15 a.m. yesterday morning, I reflected that I’d read somewhere that there's no such thing as good luck or bad luck. Instead, the big picture theory's that life itself is simply a vast array of either life lessons or blessings. Trust me when I share that when I mumbled those paraphrased words aloud before dawn yesterday morn it involved some extreme profanity; so I'll breeze over those specifics and fast forward to my point.

You can imagine my struggle to understand my general ability to compartmentalize my lot called a lesson whilst standing in the middle of my flooded downstairs family room at dawn. For instance, should that truly be the case, how the hell can I get out of this overrated classroom teaching me life lessons that mimic reality? 

Short story long, I returned home after an amazing weekend to a burst hot water tank. Now, here's where it gets interesting. I must say, what a difference 36 hours makes.

Before and after. It makes me sad.
TAKEN: JULY 10th, 2017

With the kids grown and gone, I head downstairs no more than once a week to clean. Because our home is without air-conditioning, from May to October, that space is pretty much doggie central. I keep it cool for the pups, whom generally scurry to the door when I pull in the driveway, so I never feel the need to visit them in their space.

To compound that, the laundry gets done by hand via my glass washboard at the cottage. So, though I still clean their space weekly, I have no need for the laundry room. I guess I could admit that I'm grateful something unexpectedly tumbled down the stairs yesterday morning, or I wouldn't have gone downstairs. Could going downstairs be characterized as a blessing?

Anyway, by mid-morning, I recalled I did a lot of research before we pulled up the carpet and replaced it with laminated flooring, not hardwood. Yesterday, my research became one of those things in disguise. The floating floor we'd installed was up in about an hour and a half, presenting me with blessing #2.

Blessing number 3? Treat people the way you want to be treated. One call and my new high efficiency hot water tank was purchased and installed by early afternoon. With fans oscillating and dehumidifiers buzzing I can only hope that I can afford to replace the flooring I really loved.

Afterall, we all know hydro gets paid first and I can see the spike in consumption from the instant the tank went down.  Though I had an amazing weekend, when all is said and done I am thinking I could have flown to see my best electronic friend for the lot of hydro that was consumed waiting for me to experience my first blessing

So I'll leave you with two things: Enough with the life lessons & I hate Hydro.

OK, three things. Lastly.... Ya gotta laugh about it!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

I PROMISED TO PAY IT FORWARD

For the last few weekends I’ve tried, unsuccessfully, to wrap my head around reading a specific book I purchased from my favourite used bookstore before my trip to Cuba.

For varying reasons, after a dozen or more tries, I couldn't seem to make it past page eighteen. Ultimately discouraged, I abandoned my efforts last Saturday & conceded that after more than three decades, I’d finally discovered an offering from the author that I didn’t find remotely appealing.

Throwing down that official gauntlet had me rambling about my cottage bookshelves for something to sink my imagination into. Then, out of the blue, my husband reminded me of a hard cover book I was gifted by a total stranger on my April flight from New Orleans to Dallas-Fort Worth. As you can expect, there’s a story there.

Once I took my seat, a lovely lady with the window seat cheerfully greeted me. I settled in, lowering my tray to make room for my tablet and the paperback book I was in the midst of reading. Out of the blue she announced that she too enjoyed the writer, then produced her newest offering in hardcover. She went on to explain that years ago her husband joined a book club that automatically delivered him the new releases to which he'd present those as gifts to his wife.

As quick as my envy ensued, I instantly had a WTF moment when she confessed it would be nice if he made more of an effort to shop for her so she got to read something else once in a while. I know it’s easy enough to have a book automatically delivered to a specific address but I found the fact that he would gift wrap them and surprise her with them without occasion very sexy. 

Of course, when it comes to gauging romantic gestures toward me I have little, actually zero personal experience. If you'll recall, I'm the gal that has to research and plan her own birthday trips for two every year. Not only that, on my last milestone celebration, my husband had his balloon offering delivered on the wrong day; so perhaps now you can appreciate how I would find a gift wrapped book almost orgasmic!

Anyway, we continued to chat about various books when half way through the flight she pulled out a second hardcover book asking if I’d read it. When I admitted I hadn’t, she generously gave me her never read book. I was both shocked and grateful and I accepted. As we both held onto the book as it transferred ownership, I promised her that when I was finished reading it, I would pay it forward. I would give it to another in hopes that they too would pass it on to someone new.

If you're interested in receiving this special gem, let me know. After you're done with it, feel free to ask to borrow any one of my 40+ Danielle Steele books or any of my new to me used books I aquire from The Owl Pen downtown. I don't care that they won't be gift wrapped, the fact that the owner will call me and tell me new ones have arrived (giving me the first right of refusal) is still very sexy.

What? Are you surprised that practicality won out over romance?

After 30 years of conditioning, I'm honestly OK with it. Which is why I refuse to apologize for enjoying these types of books, nor care to explain why I will gladly tune into a Hallmark Channel flick over a Martin Scorsese movie in a heart beat.

It's my mirage theory: In the absence of water, I tend to eat the sand.

Thank goodness that crap contains lots of fiber!!

Tackled a new book & a Canada Day drink with my best electronic friend simultaneously.
Neither disappointed.
TAKEN: July 1st, 2017