Latest Entries »

I think the saying goes something like “youth and exuberance is no match for age and treachery”.  Maybe it is because I am getting older, but I find that statement more and more truthful as the years go on.  I was at my second home, the Gulf Coast of Mississippi last week on a bit of a vacation, and as is my usual habit I found myself sitting at way too many poker tables.

I have always thought that the poker table was an interesting cross section of the people in society as a whole nowadays.  This trip was no different as I found myself at tables with a wide range of people, the 85 year old lady, impeccably dressed, but having a hard time staying awake, the middle age couple playing against each other, which is kind of a waste of money but who was I to judge.  Then the usual plethora of “young guns” the 20 something old men with their baseball hats on backwards, dark shade, ear phones attached to something in their pockets, and a huge stack of chips (used to intimidate no doubt) and sipping endlessly on energy drinks.

I suppose I would fall in the “older people” category being upper middle age myself, and I do wear my baseball cap facing forward, the way they are supposed to be.  I don’t wear dark glasses or listen to anything but the endless chatter between players and dealer at the table.  If prompted by the scantily clad ladies walking around the casino, I will have a beer or two; I mean who would say no to a lady dressed in such a manner?

As luck would have it, I was at one such table late one evening, or was it early in the morning, I don’t remember exactly.  The tables can seat up to ten players and of course the dealer.  I am not going to bore you with the technical aspects of a poker game, but this table was loaded with a wide variety of characters as described above.  The game went on, and on into the late hours of the night, the old woman finally left to go to bed somewhere, but I think she was already pretty well rested.  Others came and filled the empty seats and the kaleidoscope of people just continued on and on.

Finally it happened, the showdown between young gun and an older person, me.  With brash bravado he bet an unusually high amount of money on the first round of cards.  As is customary most of the rest of the people at the table folded but the older person decided to see what the young gun was made of so I called.  The next card did nothing for my hand, a mere pair of tens, but the young gun was relentless, betting another high amount of money.  This went on until the last card was dealt, an Ace.  Now the young gun was either really excited about such a good hand, or was just irritated because the old person was matching his bets.  So as the game is called “No Limit” he pushed his stack of chips to the center of the table and called “All In”.

A hush fell over the table as the older guy felt all eyes turned on him.  I studied my two hidden cards and realized I had only the pair of tens; surely the young gun had made a higher pair or better.  I fidgeted with some chips, had a sip of one of those lady delivered beers and then said in a firm a voice as I could muster “I call”.  The cards were shown and he had a lesser pair, sixes actually, than my mere pair of tens.  The dealer smirked at the young gun and pushed the chips to me, about $800.00 worth of chips.  I calmly stacked them all in front of me, and listened to the mutterings of the young gun, how he could not believe an older person would call his bluff, how he loved to play against people like me (yeah sure) and on and on for another thirty minutes.  He then told me that he hoped I would stay around and play so he could get his money back.  That’s where the treachery part comes in, I simply told the dealer I wanted to cash in, and while my chips were being counted I sipped the last of my beer, rose from the table and with a tip of my correctly placed baseball hat said “thanks for the game” and left because afterall we older people need our sleep.

Interview #9 – Tammy Maas

Hi again faithful followers and newcomers.  I have really been lucky with all of my interviews to have some great people share things with me.  This interview is no different; I met Tammy Maas when she accidentally stumbled into my blog months ago.  Tammy was one of the first ones to raiser her hand when I asked for more subjects to interview and what follows I think is some pretty interesting insights into Tammy and what makes her tick.

Tammy officially published her first book, A Complicated Life in A Small Town in February of this year, take a peek here http://tinyurl.com/9mlawk3   I have read some of the book, and more importantly the reviews on Amazon.  My favorite has to be “With clever prose, Maas layers her characters”   I encourage all of you to take a look at Tammy’s book and I’m sure you will be waiting for the next book as anxiously as I am.  Tammy can be found on Twitter as @aniMAASity and her super cool blog is at  aniMAASity.weebly.com

I loved the reviews on “A Complicated Life in a SmallTown” you seem to have hit a home run with this one.  How did this book come about?

I had a storyline in my head and went shopping online for a disease for one of the characters. There I stumbled upon Prader-Willi syndrome, a rare genetic disorder that causes people to eat themselves to death if it’s not monitored. It’s a fascinating illness that many people aren’t aware of.   I knew I wanted the book to be about a girl and her struggles with her sister so I created the main character Lydia. After I found Prader-Willi syndrome the rest came easy.

While writing, how many times did you change the storyline and final outcome?

I stuck to the same storyline and final outcome from the start. I knew how I wanted the story to end and I knew how I wanted the sequel to begin. Because this will be a trilogy, it was important that I had all the pieces in place. These books are novella’s so my goal is to have them be short, fast paced reads.

Are your characters and/or settings based on real life experiences, a version of people you have met or purely fictional?

I’ve been accused of being a character in my book and I’ve been accused of having life experiences in my book – the book is fiction. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it if you know what I mean.

Will there be more books like this coming from you soon?

Yes! I hope to have the sequel to my publisher by the end of the month and I’m already working on the third book. In addition I’m 50% complete with a novel on a different subject.

I understand this isn’t your first published work, what else have you had put out there?

Years ago I wrote for a newspaper, I also had a greeting card published, a piece in Reader’s Digest and a recent article in Military Money Magazine.

Who was your biggest supporter while writing you book?

My hubby’s main goal in life is to be married to a famous author. He is always the driving force behind my writing. In fact, he told me that if I don’t have book #2, the sequel to A Complicated Life in a SmallTown, completed by the end of this month, then I have to get a job! Like a real job. This could be the scariest Halloween of my life.

How often do you work on your novel in a typical week?

It depends on the time of year. Having young kid’s means they are home all summer or I should say it means we are running all summer! You see I transform into a Domestic Goddess when I’m not writing. That sounds so much better than a stay at home mom. I didn’t write much this past summer (but I had a lot of fun with my kids) and now I’ve been hitting it hard, especially considering the cruel deadline at hand. I often daydream about going to a secluded location to do nothing but write for a week straight but I don’t think I could do it. I do my best writing at the kitchen table when supper is burning and the kids are fighting. In addition to working on books I’m also a blogger so it’s a seven-day a week thing for me. I’ve had my laptop (the love of my life) for two years and have worn many of the letters off the keyboard already.

Are you self publishing? Or are you working with Publishing Company?

Rainstorm Press www.RainstormPress.com is my publishing company and I couldn’t be happier. I work with a great group of authors who are very supportive. Lyle Perez runs Rainstorm and he is a wicked cool guy who really makes you feel at home.

What advice do you have for unpublished Authors about finding a Publishing Company?

My advice to unpublished authors is to not believe everything you hear. I set out on this journey expecting at least a year’s worth of rejections. But that’s not what happened. At 10pm on a Saturday night from the comfort of my recliner I sent portions of my manuscript to eight publishers. At 10:30 I had a reply from Rainstorm. The email said, “Wow, please send me your full manuscript.” A week later I had a contract and four months later my book was published. I am living proof that you don’t have to be rejected a million times before you get published.

The other advice I would offer is that no situation is typical. People say you have to read in order to write well. This is breaking news here Peter…..I don’t like to read. I’ve never stated that publically and I’ve done a ton of interviews. The horror! I know it’s shocking but I think there are others out there, just like me who would rather write than read but saying it out loud doesn’t sound so good so we live in fear of telling that horrid truth. But I do read, don’t get me wrong, and I even enjoy what I read but I have to force myself to do it.

I have just one more thing to add. First time published writers are typically told not to expect to sell many books at their first book signing. I sold nearly 100 books at mine! Yes I had writer’s cramp but it was definitely worth it.

Wow, you have done really well Tammy, I know the readers will be rushing out to pick up a copy, but as you know, I like to dig a bit deeper and find out more about Tammy than you would see in a typical stuffed shirt interview.  So here we go with the inside scoop stuff.

Where were you born and raised?

Dubuque, Iowa. But I’ve lived in Texas, Minnesota, Tennessee and West   Virginia. I was one of those kids that couldn’t wait to get out of town and then I was one of those adults who couldn’t wait to move back home.

Where do you live now?

I live in a tiny town (4,000 people) called Monticello, Iowa. And it’s the location where my book takes place too.

Have you ever traveled internationally?

I’ve never had the opportunity to travel internationally and if I did have the opportunity I think I would pass. I like to watch “Monster’s Inside Me” and most of the awful things that happen to the people on the show come from them visiting other countries. I know I should get over that but it would be my luck to come home from a trip with a monster inside of me.

Describe your Dream Vacation?

Beach, sun, white sand, blue water and lots of interesting shells for me to pick up. A massage on the beach would be nice, waiters and a mansion to stay in with central air and people to fan me with palm branches and feed me grapes.

If you won the lottery tomorrow, what would you change about your life, if anything?

One of my favorite past times is going to casino’s so I definitely would do that more. I don’t think I would make any major changes but it sure would be nice to have everything paid off and not having to worry about college and stuff. I would also make sure my parents, in-laws and sister’s got a piece of the pie.

Tell us a little about your family.

I have a wonderful husband who I have been married to for 24 years. Our daughter McKenzie is nine going on twenty and our son William is six. We have a German shepherd mix named Charlie, two cats named Rose and Maddie and a Russian Box Turtle named Diamond.

How has your life been different than what you’d imagined?

I always wanted to be an author but I never thought it would happen. In the beginning I didn’t want kids and now I have two. I used to manage 200 people, now I have a difficult time managing myself. I think a person imagines what their life will be like in different stages. Right now I try to imagine what the next ten years will bring and I can’t even begin to guess. That’s what makes life so fun; you just never know how things will turn out.

What is the most adventurous thing you have ever done?

I’m really not into adventure. I wouldn’t jump out of an airplane or go zip-lining or bungee-jumping, heck I don’t even like roller-coasters. So I guess life in general has been my adventure. I’ve worked in many different occupations and have experienced many things. Writing a book has been the greatest adventure of all.

Where would you go in your Time Machine?

I would go back to the 50’s. Grease is one of my favorite movies and it appears that things were pretty simple back then. But of course while in the time machine I would push the “transform” button and I would pop out looking like Olivia Newton John, decked out in my black, skin tight, pop-your-eyes-right-out-of-your-head outfit.

How would you like to be remembered?

My father is a veteran (Viet-Nam) and recently initiated the Moving Wall coming to Dubuque. The moving wall is a reproduction of the wall in DC with over 58,000 names on it. Fifteen years ago I wrote my father a letter and he read that letter at the opening ceremony. He broke down but managed to finish reading it. The mayor of Dubuque, county supervisors, veterans and family members all cried. Vet’s shook my hand and thanked me for helping them heal. These guys are flippin heros and they’re shaking my hand! The newspaper even wrote about how moving my letter was. That’s how I want to be remembered, as a person who helped others through writing. Be it healing, laughing, helping or giving them something to think about, I want to be remembered for my words.

Super stuff Tammy, now here is where I like to catch everyone off guard with my one or two word answer segment.  I know it’s tough to limit yourself to that, but let’s go for it.

Favorite pet?     Dog

Fast dance or Slow Dance?   Fast

Boxers/Briefs?   Briefs

Short/Tall?   Short

Favorite food?   Lobster

Tattoo Yes or No?   Yes

Best book you ever read?   Oh, The Places You’ll Go, Dr. Seuss

Favorite TV Show?    Supernatural

Movie that makes you cry?   Steel Magnolia’s

Super, now for a new feature in my interviews, a bit of word association, no cheating now, what is the first thing that comes to mind when you read the following words.

Dog-Love

Coffee-Black

Book-Ends

Best Friend-Confidant

Red-Herring

Summer-Hot

Convertible-Topless

Loud-Music

Author-Word Nerd

Really good job Tammy, you have been a delight to interview and as is customary I give you the floor to finish off the interview and give us all a look at your favorite charity.

Thank you so much for giving me this opportunity, I’m so proud to be on your blog!

My favorite charity is The Veteran’s FreedomCenter. It’s located in Dubuque, Iowa and it’s the first of its kind. My Dad is the co-founder. It’ a facility for veterans of any war and inside you will find: exercise equipment, an arts and crafts room, a pool table, scroll saws, a big screen television and tables where you can sit down and chat with people who have had similar experiences in life. You can use computers, find answers to questions and just know that you have a place you can go where people care.

https://www.facebook.com/#!/vfc.dubuque?fref=ts

Oh and being a successful Author Tammy has a trailer for her book  which I can’t get to post, please look for it on her site .  Gotta love it.

Opening Chapter

I opened this chapter on my computer and stared at it for an hour. I wrote it almost 9 months ago and still don’t think its right.  The scene portrayed in the chapter has very little to do with the book that follows.  I was looking to try and instill some excitement and sense of action and urgency in the reader to set them up for the remaining chapters.  Rather than start the book by steadfastly setting up each portion and character, I wanted something different.  I would love to hear what you have to say about this.  I apologize for any obvious errors in tense and grammar.

Chapter 1

Heavy eyelids closing over tired eyes, the watch commander tries to sleep, the adrenaline still pumping through his veins from the last call.  All of Station 7 of the Coral Gables Fire Department is quiet for now; the metalic ticking of the cooling engines is the only sound in the station.  Thinking, shifting on the cot, knowing the men are tired, six calls so far in their shift that started just sixteen hours ago.  Now rest, the Commander tosses around again, would he ever get used to sleeping in half of his uniform.  In the dorm area next door the rest of the men are trying to get the same elusive sleep, turning and trying to nod off as the Station slowly goes off to sleep.

Suddenly the horn blares, the Commanders eyes opened quickly, what had it been an hour, 30 minutes.  Swinging his legs off of the cot, taking just a brief second to get his bearings; the horn blaring insistent and loud as the speakers fill with the voice, the voice they always heard when the alarm sounds “2192 Rivera Drive, Station 12 standing by for second alarm” running towards the bays, grabbing the remainder of his gear as he jogs the short distance to the truck, a boot up on the running board as he slides into the passenger seat.  Turning the computer consol on as the driver assumes his position.  The back doors of the cab open and close quickly as the remaining two firefighters complete the crew. The driver runs his fingers over an array of switches as the truck comes to life, lights glaring off the inside of the fire station.  The Commander looked out the right window and sees the ladder crew in position in their cab, the Paramedics rig just behind.  Nodding to the driver Pumper 7 and Ladder 7 roll out of the Coral Gables Fire Station 7 into the hot sticky southern Florida night.

Punching numbers and addresses into the computer on the dash, the Commander is amazed at just how close the call is to the station, yelling to the driver over the scream of the engine and the sirens “Less than half a mile, right up here on Rivera then run down about 4 blocks, address should be on the right” the driver, hands gripping the wheel as he maneuvers through the quiet narrow streets nods in acknowledgement.

On the radio, the Commander barks orders to the other trucks behind him “Ladder, I want you set up behind us, the hydrant at Suarez, hook up to it and roll forward, you will be about 4, that’s 4 houses down from the fire.  Paramedics, roll past Ladder and follow us through to the fire, we will set up on the street and tackle it from there.  On my call be ready with all your equipment”

Checking his watch, 2 minutes since the alarm had been sounded.  Looking out the window of the truck he could see it in the distance, big tall flames flickering through the darkness just above the tree line.  Taking a moment, thinking how bad this looked before barking into the radio “Paramedics get your gear out as soon as you get there, this looks like it could be ugly” squawking on the radio as the paramedics acknowledged.

Passing Suarez the commander gets a glimpse of the stubby hydrant “Ladder, there on your left” the pumper slowed as it neared the fire, people running frantically around with no apparent purpose.  A man using a garden hose from the neighboring home, trying desperately to douse the inferno.

The pumper grinds to a halt and all four men jumped into action, pulling on SCBA’s the Commander runs to the back of the truck, watching one of the firemen hooking up the big four inch line to directly to the tank.  Silently thinking how this should be enough to get started until the ladder brings up the supply hose.  The driver stands on the other side of the pumper flicking switches and turning valves as the pump roars to life, water surging through the line as the two firefighters take the end of the hose and run towards the building.

Rushing past the small crowd of neighbors, the Commander moves to the front door with the men, his second in command right behind him, this was their job, going into the home with full gear on knowing that this intense a fire was deadly for anyone in the house, praying that it was empty, but in far too many fires that was not the case.  The two men on the hose begin spraying an arc of high pressure water over the doorway, the sizzle of heated water, the acrid smell of burning insulation and plastic siding flares their nostrils as they watch the commander push open the door.

The ladder truck quickly pulls up behind the first truck, hooking up the feeder hose from the hydrant to the truck, water, the lifeblood of the pumper was about to flow from the hydrant.  A radio call to the firefighter at the hydrant and the hose quickly filled and precious water flowed quickly into the tanks.  Moving like a well choreographed ballet, the crew of the Ladder truck hook up their hoses, extended outriggers and two firefighters climb into the small basket at the end of the ladder, hydraulics whine and extend the ladder as the firefighters stared to hose down the roof of the structure providing cover to the firemen at the door.

Dense smoke loomed in front of his mask as the Commander enters the home, flames dance all around him as the two firefighters continue spraying a pattern across the front room, the smoke spiraling into itself as the air currents are disrupted by the spray of cold water.  The steady opening and closing of the valve on his air tank almost as loud as his pounding heart as he moves, ten feet in now, he can feel the hand of his second on his shoulder, always keeping in touch this way, making sure that neither of them is left behind in a fireman’s biggest fear; a floor collapse; or worse a ceiling and roof collapse.  Suddenly through the darkness he spots a socked foot then the leg and soon the entire body of an elderly person lying still on the floor.  Reaching down, picking the frail person up and over his shoulder he shouts at his number two to back up and get them out of the house.

Moving past the hose as the firefighters advance in further, the fire intense and hotter than when they first arrived, they were losing this one, they all knew it.  “Back out, everyone out” the Commander yells as he carts the limp body over his shoulder.  Finally exiting out the front door again and into the cleaner air, water cascading on them from the ladder truck as they move further from the inferno until they reach the sidewalk where the paramedics had set up to triage any victims.

The death throes of the building groan loudly in the hot night air, brought on as the wooden trusses finally begin to collapse, their support undermined by the fire and the weight of the water cascading from above.  Louder still as the whole roof collapses into the building.  Debris flies out towards the street as the ground crew continues to spray water on the now burning pile of wood and shingles.  The ladder crew, satisfied that all firefighters were out concentrated their spray on the adjoining home, attempting to keep the fire from spreading.

Neighbors mull around on the street, watching in shock as the scene unfolds before them.  One of them runs up to the paramedics, seeing them feverishly performing CPR on the limp body of an elderly woman “that’s Maureen Braddock”.  The Commander asks if she lives alone and the neighbor nods his head.  Looking back at the now completely collapsed structure, thankful he had got the only occupant out.

Eight minutes since the call, five minutes on the scene and the fire began to die down, starving for fuel and saturated by thousands of gallons of water.   Fortunate the fire had not spread, the pair of hoses continued to flood the remnants of the single family home.  The paramedics continued to perform CPR as they loaded the stretcher onto their ambulance; the lead paramedic looked over at the Commander and shook his head before climbing into the back.  Pulling away from the curb they left, lights flashing, as the crowd of neighbors looked helplessly on.

Resuming My Interviews

Ok Tweeps and Bloggers, lets get the ball rolling again, I have some catching up to do.  If you are, or know, any published, or wanna be published Authors who would allow me to grill them, I would love to host them on my little page.  Email me or leave me a note here.  peterhobbs3@gmail.com

Thanks Friends

A long time ago I put up a list of three things I would do if I were the King of the World.  Well I’m still waiting for that election or appointment (who would appoint the King of the World) so in the meantime I have been refining my decrees.  In no particular order I have listed some additional Laws that I would put in place after I am King.

  1. You will never have to work for a boss/owner/supervisor who is not as smart as you are.  The origins of this Law are pretty self-explanatory but if you want more information contact me, but not at my work email, just in case you know.
  2. The five, six or seven-day work week is hereby abolished.  As King I won’t have to work but I still think my faithful followers should get some relief.  So in the spirit of big government I hereby decree that the work week is herby reduced to two days, each day not to exceed eight hours.  This one is a no brainer but I think it will help me win the election.
  3. Red traffic lights are hereby abolished, and its now proceed with caution but don’t slow down too much kinda thing on the highways.  I have spent way too many minutes waiting for traffic lights on my way to work at 5am when there is absolutely no normal people on the road and therefore no traffic of any consequence.  This Law will save a lot of commute time and fuel, hopefully enough to outweight the human carnage that may ensue.

So there, three new Laws from your King in waiting.  Hopefully I will have the title soon so I don’t have time to think of many new Laws, I really just want to enact a few then go on a life time vacation, fitting of a King.

 

 

 

Smart Phone, Dumb User

Well it was inevitable I suppose, I got a Smart Phone.  Now before I go on about this I want to let you know that if it were not for work, I would not own a cell phone.  Sure my wife has a cell phone as does my 13-year-old boy, but me, nope, I would be happy as a pig in excrement without one.

Work decided that since I had finally come to grips with using a Blackberry after 4  years, now was time to really tick me off and get me a new phone.  What I didn’t have the heart to tell them was that my 13-year-old boy had set up my Blackberry when I first got it, yes at 9 years old.

Sitting at home, the smart phone charging as I looked through the 4,364 page manual I start to panic.  I mean it has 5 home screens, who needs 5 home screen?  Who needs 1 home screen?  Applications, what is that? I was in a cold sweat by time the boy came home from school.  He saw me thumbing through the manual and said “hey Dad, new phone?”.  I looked at him much like a dear in the headlights and nodded.

He picked it up, deftly moved it around and flicked it on (I hadn’t got to that part of the manual yet) and remarked “Wow, I like this one better than mine”.  Ok, maybe it was a testosterone thing but I puffed up a bit and said “yeah mine is better than yours”.

He set it back down and walked out of the kitchen…I started to panic again, hands trembling as I held the manual.  “Uhmm Son” I called with a bit of a pitch in my voice “could you come here”.  Strolling back in the kitchen, munching on a granola bar “yeah Dad, whats up?”  I picked up the phone and held it out to him, softly saying “Help me, please help me”. 

“Dad, you don’t know how to set this up” he was taunting me now, I know it, he gets that from his Mother’s side of the family.  “Don’t be silly son, of course I do but I know how much you like playing with these things so go ahead and give it a shot” smirking to myself.

A thumb and two fingers blazed across the flat glass screen, where the hell are the buttons.  It was only a minute, maybe two when he handed the phone back.  “there you go Dad, whats for dinner” as he wandered back out to watch TV.

I looked at my new home screen, it had icons for his cell, my wifes cell, my work number, it had my email, it had my gmail, it had my work email, it had my personal contacts it had an application icon.  It had the alarm set for the time I call him to wake him up on school days and he had a picture of himself as the wallpaper.

I really wonder what they are teaching these kids in school nowadays.  I really need to go talk to his teacher, maybe I should call her, wonder if there is an App for that.

My First 60 Years

My first 60 years, yes I am nearing a milestone in my life this month, I turn 60.  I sat mulling over the six decades I have been alive and I have discovered that a human being can do an awful lot in that amount of time.  I don’t mean as a society, but as individual people, women and men.  As a child I never understood the concept of individuality fully.  When I was young I was told that no two snow flakes are alike, how could that be, there a zillion of them falling all around me, surely two of them must be alike?  I think of that often and when I put it in the perspective of us mere mortals it is even more interesting.  On one hand it is nice to know we are all individuals, with our own little idosyncracies and faults, and our own talents too, but this means there will only be one Winston Churchill, or Abraham Lincoln, these men never again to be replicated.  Well you know where that line of thought led me, yes, what are my unique abilities and idiosyncracies?

My first 60 years,  I have lived in two countries, I have travelled both of them extensively.  I have been fortunate to make many, many wonderful friends both in the real world and here in the blogosphere and yes, I have had failures, many failures.

My first 60 years have resulted in two divorces, and thankfully a third marriage that has finally worked.  I have seen the death of my parents, I have seen the death of friends.  I have raised two children, and lost one of them.  I have worked, Lord how I have worked, as a youth from age 12 in the summers and as an adult (barely) from age 17 until today.  I have excelled in my field while failing in many personal areas.  I have disappointed many people in my life and many have disappointed me.  I have a failed relationship with my surviving siblings, to the point of finding out second-hand that one of them passed away.  I have done nothing important enough to leave a mark on this earth, I know my memory will live on in my children, for better or worse and I suppose that is all we can really wish for.

My first 60 years saw me go through the male mid-life crisis, I bought the sports car, I had the trophy wife, none of this really made me a better or happier person, I was just going through life.  I ruined a marriage by working, and working and working.  I didn’t realize then the constant maintenance required to keep marriage viable.

My first 60 years and my life finally became complete when I was 44, it was then I met my now wife.  From her I have learned everything I now know about being a husband and a partner.  She has shown me the frailty of life, how precious it is.  She alone has shown me that material things come and go, but true love is forever.  I learned from my wife that the human body can go through an incredible amount of pain and the inner person can still smile and say “its all going to be fine”.  My wife is my Rock, she never complains, her life has been so hard these past ten years, but she keeps slugging away, making a home for my son and I.   She is my biggest cheerleader, telling anyone who will listen how good a husband I am, how loving a father.  My wife is truly and angel and the most important single thing that has ever happened in my life.  Now, as her health diminishes, I only hope I can be as strong for her as she has been for me and that I can hold her hand and say “it’s all going to be fine”.

My first 60 years, where did the time go.

I had a moment of lucidity the other day, rare for me I know, but I had a conversation with myself about not being at my Blog post for the past 7 months or so.  I will have to paraphrase the conversation but it went something like this:

Lucid Self  “You know you haven’t checked your blog or email in over 7 months”

Self “Whats your point, we are surviving aren’t we”?

Lucid Self  “You might have missed a really important post on someones blog, you should check”

Self “But I am rusty….I don’t wanna” ~a little whine here~

Lucid Self  “Don’t be such a baby”

Self “They have all forgotten me by now”

Lucid Self “Probably, but you may be surprised”

So I thought about this for a while, yes I have just a tiny little spot here in the Blogosphere, I have only a handful of followers and probably a pretty low number of hits relative to other Blogs, but is any of this cause to come back to my Blog?

So I tentatively checked to see if I still had a Blog, after I fumbled around for UserNames and Passwords I managed to log on.  You know, I was pretty amazed that even after 7 months people were still stopping by my blog.  Maybe they were misdirected clicks of a mouse, or perhaps someone just surfing, but regadless there were clicks and that meant people still cared.  I was elated, fumbling around more trying to figure out how to post again.  I went to a few of my blogbuddies blogs (I will get to the rest of your blogs soon) and found that despite my absence for all these months people still remember me and care.

So what now? I went back and asked that smart alec Lucid Self and the answer seems apparent, I have to Blog, I need this outlet to vent, to shed my frustrations and disappointments I have had in my life, to lift that weight from my heart and put it on yours (nice of me huh?).  So what is life like without a blog, many of you probably don’t remember but here are some highlights

  • Supper is always warm
  • You can actually have a conversation with your spouse
  • Sunrises are beautiful and sunsets the same
  • Crossword puzzles and card games, aren’t that bad after all
  • There are plants amongst all those weeds in the garden
  • The real world can be painful, but it is beautiful to be alive

Im sure there are more but these are just the ones that come to my mind right now.  Yes, Blogs are fun, very emotionally and mentally satisfying, but please lets not forget our “real world” the one where we have responsiblities and expectations, where we are needed more than we probably know.  Don’t get so consumed in this that you don’t remember what the sunsets look like and your ability to converse with a live person is gone.

Finally Autumn

I could have titled this little post “My Summer of Discontent” but I think that one is already taken.  I hope that all my friends on here are doing fine, I hear that some of you have published your books and I hope you sell a zillion of them and hear also that others are working on the Great American Novel and preparing to publish.  I hope all of oyu enjoy the experience and hopefully the rewards of your labor, you are all extremely talented and I am still impressed by your work(s).

This on the other hand is the only thing I have written in over six months…a long spring and summer have come and now thankfully gone.  Life has not been kind but then again as they say “getting old aint for sissies” so we press on, and get older and hopefully wiser.

I just wanted to pop in and say hello and to thank all of you for continuing to stop by and see if Im around, I can see the “hits” and appreciate every one of you that takes a moment out of your busy day to stop by.  Bless you all.

 

 

Retiring

Hello all my loyal readers, I want you to know how much your reading and input has helped me with this blog over the past six months or so.  However, all good, and even not so good, things must end.

I am going to take a hiatus from the Blogosphere for a while, probably a long while and I wanted to let you know that personally.

Once again, thank you for all your support and insight, you are all truly wonderful people.

Hugs

Peter