You just might find…

V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #103: theme song

Let’s have a little fun this week, discovering our current theme song. Post a video, lyrics, or write your own.

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A “theme song” – let’s call it my pandemic theme song – has been looping through my mind ever since COVID-19 erupted in the United States back in March.

The chorus from You Can’t Always Get What You Want by (who else) The Rolling Stones popped into my head almost immediately.

It also happens to be embroidered on a large 14″ x 18″ patch of denim. Which is framed and hangs on the wall next to my desk where I write every day.

Whenever I look up, there it is in glorious shades of pink and purple. A good friend of mine from high school made it for me in 1972. She was kind of a hippy back then and is now a cloistered nun. A story I touched upon last year.

abby patch2

 

I mean, seriously, it does make perfect sense.  You can’t always get what you want…most of us learn that fairly early in life if we’re lucky…and I often feel comforted by this timeless bit of wisdom. The Stones immortalized it, but it is actually true…duh.

I try to keep this nugget of humble logic in mind…as I wake up each morning…open my eyes…and remember. It’s not a dream. The world is still under siege. We are still waiting for “normal.”

The Stones did a wonderful virtual Zoom rendition of this tune on April 18th, 2020 for the “One World: Together At Home” concert in support of the World Health Organization. How fascinating that – out of all the songs they’ve recorded – this one was chosen for such a monumental moment in history. It makes perfect sense to me.

I may desperately want to see my family and friends in person…but I am still grateful I am not stuck in a long line of cars waiting for food. Or worrying I may lose my home or business. The financial impact on my family of 2 is not nearly as severe as it is for so many others.

Even though the April 18th performance doesn’t include the opening verses sung by the London Bach Choir, I highly recommend it.
(Bonus: you’ll get to see Charlie Watts playing air drums)

 

You Can’t Always Get What You Want

I saw her today at the reception
A glass of wine in her hand
I knew she was gonna meet her connection
At her feet was her footloose man

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes, well, you might find
You get what you need

And I went down to the demonstration
To get my fair share of abuse
Singing, “We’re gonna vent our frustration
If we don’t we’re gonna blow a fifty-amp fuse”

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes, well, you just might find
You get what you need

I went down to the Chelsea drugstore
To get your prescription filled
I was standing in line with Mr. Jimmy
And man, did he look pretty ill
We decided that we would have a soda
My favorite flavor, cherry red
I sung my song to Mr. Jimmy
Yeah, and he said one word to me, and that was “dead”
I said to him

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you just might find
You get what you need

You get what you need, yeah, oh baby

I saw her today at the reception
In her glass was a bleeding man
She was practiced at the art of deception
Well, I could tell by her blood-stained hands

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you just might find
You just might find
You get what you need

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you just might find
You just might find
You get what you need, oh yeah

by, Keith Richards and Mick Jagger
Released in 1969 on the album Let It Bleed

I spied with my little eye…

BeckyB JulySquares: Perspectives

SixWordSaturday

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I almost missed witnessing a clandestine dewdrop convention during a walk last week. Fortunately a glint of sun caught my eye…stopping me in my tracks.

What is that?

I carefully trespassed a few yards onto an expanse of lawn to investigate. Nobody was out and about…so I was safe to proceed.

First look:

drops far back

How the heck were those drops hanging there? No signs of a cobweb that I could see.

Gotta get closer.

Second look:

drops closer

Maybe…it really was magic.

Third look:

drops floating

Yup. Magic. That explains it.

Fandango’s Friday Flashback: July 3

Inspired by Fandango’s Friday Flashback: July 3

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of your earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember? Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year….Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year?

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I wonder about young children today. What will they remember in the years to come? Just staying distant and wearing masks?

Apparently bicycle riding has become more popular since the pandemic began – among those with access – so perhaps kids forced to stay “distant” will be more apt to gravitate toward solitary outdoor play such as this. I hope so.

“Zooming,” however, takes on a whole new meaning.

The following post was originally published on July 3, 2018

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Bicycles: Times Past

 

Irene Waters’ “Times Past” prompt challenge topic for this month is: Bicycles.

https://irenewaters19.com/2018/07/01/bicycles-times-past/

I am a baby boomer and grew up in the suburbs of New York and New Jersey, USA

I remember always having some type of 2 or 3 wheeled transportation to call my own when I was a kid.

 

tricycle A010
1956

I started off on a tricycle and stepped up to a “big girl” bike around the age of 5 or 6. Pink, with coaster brakes and a loud horn, this bike was my ticket to freedom – once I fully learned how to stop…. My most vivid bicycle memory is the day my father removed my training wheels. I started pedaling in front of our house – at first wobbly – but with my father’s hand steadying the back I managed to remain upright. I picked up speed as I – by myself!- headed toward the end of the street. After flying by 2 or 3 houses I realized I had absolutely no idea how to slow down and stop. Either nobody told me it was the same as with the training wheels or I simply forgot. Brain cramp. So what did I do? I clearly remember the heart thudding moment-of-panic as I made a split second decision (perhaps my first and that’s why I remember it so well). I steered into the curb and fell over onto the asphalt. Nothing broken. Just a few bumps, scrapes and bruises. Lesson learned.

Bike 1
circa 1959 – my new bike (sister not impressed…)

Despite my early braking mishap, I absolutely loved riding a bike and rode with no fear. When I outgrew (or wore out) the pink one, I got a bigger white bike in the 5th grade. Coaster brakes again. In those days, still no helmet. Despite the fact that my father kept accidentally bumping his car into my “new white bike” (as noted in my diary) it lasted quite a few years. The garage was small for a car plus multiple bikes. There were 4 kids by then.

When I was 10 and 11, I often rode to the small grocery store/strip mall that was 6+ blocks away. Errands for my mother or to get bubble gum and comics for myself. Or sometimes to sample all the perfume spray testers at the drug store with my girlfriend Kathleen. It was mostly downhill from my house. I’d start at our backyard (which bordered another backyard) and take off bumping over grass, tree roots, gravel and into the neighbor’s yard in back. I’d jump the bike over their curb and into the street, turning right. Zooming past about 4 houses, I turned left and then…the best part – a hill straight down bisecting at least 4 streets on the way to the main road and my destination…the Acme! The drug store! My hands flung out to the side. Feet off the pedals. The wind. Nothing like it before or since.  Sometimes I’d shut my eyes for a second or two. Riding back home…uphill…was another story altogether; but totally worth it.

Bike riding was crucial to my quest for exploring the vast suburban wilderness. The many blocks to the candy store, the woods at the end of the street, my friend Kathleen’s house two blocks away. My parents didn’t and couldn’t track me. “Be home by….” was all the direction I got. Priceless freedom.

When I neared the end of high school, I saved up and bought a “folding” bike which I brought to my summer job at a camp in NH. It saved space during travel and was fairly simple to store. I also brought it with me to college where I rode it from one end of campus to the other. Since my first car took center stage after college graduation, I sold my folding bike and moved on.

As an adult – in my late 30’s or early 40’s – I owned a bike again. I wore a helmet. I rode it around the rural neighborhood street where we were raising our kids. Around and around. Kind of boring. I was no longer as fearless. And what’s with the hand brakes??

Lens Artists Challenge: Surprise

Lens Artists Challenge #103: Surprise

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I am often surprised when I transfer the photos from my camera card to my laptop. The images I remember from clicking away do not always coincide with the actual results. Sometimes this is disappointing, but often I am pleasantly surprised…sort of like that excitement on Christmas morning as a child. Or opening the mystery treasure box with a special key in the gift shop at a local restaurant after dinner.

When I took the following photo, I focused on the lamp’s reflection in the window, but the resulting image morphed into the trees instead.

I actually like this one better than what I originally had in mind.

lamp in the trees
Then there was the rain pounding on our living room windows early one evening last week.

Raindrops! Photo!

I thought I was standing far enough to the side to avoid my own reflection. In the camera’s viewfinder it looked like I was. However…

Surprise!

I had to look twice, but…there it was. Do you see it?

screen drops silhouette
And last but not least…

During a quick dash down the frozen food aisle of a local grocery store, I glanced up…and ahead of me…on display at the end of an extensive beer display…

Surprise!

beer bear
Bear Selling Beer

Since this discovery, I have seen the beer bear (now wearing a mask) also promoting chips, crackers and boxes of cookies.

Yogi would have been jealous.

Covid Push

Inspired by V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #101: Decisions

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dark clouds

I’m done two weeks from tomorrow!

My friend of over 30 years called a few days ago with the news. She had made the decision to “retire” after 35+ years from her job in outpatient healthcare at a physician’s office owned by a local hospital. I put quotation marks with retire because her decision was made out of desperation. It was not made easily. It wasn’t what she had planned.

It’s the Covid push.

I had not heard the term before, but she mentioned it as an afterthought. We’d had many conversations over the last few months about the challenges she endured at work. The powers that be prioritized her schedule to include in-person visits throughout the entire pandemic. She has been terrified. At high risk herself, she was also counseling high risk patients. One after the other…when tele-health video visits would easily have sufficed.

Let’s remember, however, that insurance companies reimburse health care providers the most for in-person patient visits. Then there’s tele-health video…and the lowest reimbursement? Telephone counseling. It’s all about the money…don’t get me started.

My friend is an excellent practitioner and educator. Caring, thorough and the ultimate professional. She is also hoping to be around for her adult daughters and grandchildren for many more years to come.

It’s just not worth it anymore. I can’t do it.

I had never heard those words from her before. But there they were. Her husband, a teacher with the same risk factors, had been teaching at a public high school. He also “retired.”

They scrambled to restructure finances and find other health care options. But for the first time in many months, I heard relief in her voice.

The decision had…finally…been made.

Lens-Artists Challenge: A Quiet Moment

Lens-Artists Challenge #102: A Quiet Moment

This week, we are challenging you to capture “A Quiet Moment.”  Maybe it’s a walk early in the morning or the time you sit down with a book and a cup of coffee.  Include shots captured at home or in your neighborhood, or from a trip to a faraway place months or years ago. It’s totally up to you.

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There have been many quiet moments in the last 3 months. More than usual.

Much of the time those moments were also peaceful, particularly during solitary walks around the neighborhood next to mine. The winding street was usually empty. Cars remained parked in garages or driveways. People staying-at-home indoors, except for a few dog walkers.

There is a pond tucked in a bend in the road – which (I assume) holds water for irrigation and firefighting purposes. I usually pause for a moment when I pass by and captured this moment a few weeks ago.

cupalo and bench
June 2020

However…6 months ago…quiet moments were few and far between at my daughter’s house during the hectic holiday season. What with a talkative 3 year old whirlwind, parents and grandparents everywhere you’d turn, it was a home filled with happy noise. Music! Making cookies! Telling stories! Playing games! Time to eat! Grandma come!

There were also two sweet family dogs trying to adapt to all this fun craziness. At least that’s what I sensed. One was a friendly brown and white rescue named Taco, who was visiting for several weeks. He actually belongs to my son and his girlfriend, who traveled to Europe for the holidays. And there was Lutra (the resident pet!), a friendly black rescue dog, who belongs to my daughter and her family.

I was fascinated by the dynamic between the two pups. Taco made himself at home immediately. Lying on the couch. Napping in Lutra’s bed. Chewing on her toys. Lutra would immediately leave the area when Taco entered…and then stare at him from under the kitchen table in the next room.

However, something was apparently resolved during a loud barking session between the two in the backyard shortly after my husband and I arrived for our visit. Lutra was (I assume) communicating an important dog message. Perhaps establishing something along the lines of packs and boundaries and this is my house. I’m obviously just guessing here. But after their noisy discussion they came back into the house…entered the living room and chose seats. And that was that.

Thankfully, the Singing Santa had mercifully stopped its journey across the rug.

Neither one of them moved during the many shots I took.

A Quiet Moment of Dog Detente.

quiet dog moment
December 2019