THE WRITE PLACE…

…to build a community. Share Patti Hall's journey …


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Go Ahead And Ask. I Know You Want To.

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Purple dinosaur roams the Secret Garden. Essential.

Just where the hell have I been? My last post, aside from the lame January Home page update, was September 2014!!!! Holy tomato, Batman. Sure, I’ve been dipping my toes in the Facebook social pool over the past few months. Just a few lines and a photo or ten, nothing much really.

And, no ma’am/sir, I have not been tucked away in a cozy writer’s retreat tapping out The Great American Novel. I haven’t been off saving the world, one family member or friend at a time either. I haven’t been busy raising a family, promoting a book, working for a living or chairing ten committees.

Nope, that’s you guys. Man, you people have been BUSY!

During my 9-month people-phobia I have had a very limited itinerary; Maggie (the beach cave/home), the Secret Garden, the beach, the post office, the smoke shop and the grocery store. Did you catch that? Yes, I started smoking again, and I’m un-boyfriended too. I suppose I wasn’t ready for either one, despite how great they both (not smoking and boyfriend) were while they lasted. I WILL give quitting another try though.

I spent a month or so in Centralia with my 3-year-old grandson, Cameron, while his mom worked some crazy hours. It was good to be with their little family and it was also good to be back to my beach cave. Cora and Nola came back with me and we spent a fun weekend in the garden and at the beach and marina. The girls made some awesome beach art. Then my Sara, Jon and Cameron came to get them. We had a yummy BBQ in the Secret Garden, they unburdened me of lots of garden goodies, and then they all headed back home.

Aside from beach combing and gardening, I’ve been dabbling in painting and crafting. I spend a lot of time researching and charting my family genealogy. I have so many interests, I don’t think I’ve spent one minute of my life bored. Reading and writing have always been a huge part of my life, but not so much these past nine months.

I watch movies on Netflix sometimes. Last night I watched On Golden Pond. I loved Katharine Hepburn, the lake, the fishing and especially, the loons. The family dynamics were familiar and bittersweet.

I still write weekly postcards to my grandson, Hunter, and every few weeks to my Nola, Cora and Cameron. Other friends and family get snail mail from me occasionally. I sent my adult children, Sara and Jon, “Where’s Waldo” postcards a few weeks ago.

I’m usually up all night and sleep 4-6 hours during the day. I catch the birds singing their dawn chorus at 4:30 A.M. and the often-spectacular sunrise show. At night I get the beach sunset, moon and stars.

I still cry at the drop of a…it was a sock a couple days ago. I was rearranging something and a catch-all basket fell to the floor. As I bent to gather everything I saw a toddler-sized sock. Whether the sock was my grandson Tiven’s, who died in 2013, or his brother Hunter’s, whom I haven’t seen in almost 2 years and who is being moved to the other side of the country this week, it was heart-wrenching. I still avoid the cubby under my bed where I stored their shells, beads, drawings and toys. Hunter’s bright orange toothbrush catches me off guard sometimes.

Since Paul died in 2009, then my cat, my sister, my grandson, 2 aunts, an uncle and several friends, I haven’t moved forward much. I’ve spent a lot of time in Alaska with my parents and siblings, and I’m trying to build strong bonds with Sara’s 3 children.  Most of my adult friendships are on the phone or online.

The Secret Garden and my camera keep me going, as does sharing what I find that amazes me. Publicly, I try to add a kind word or humor when I can. If not, I say nothing.

In the back room of my friend’s garage, are floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall totes. Two households (both mine, both gone) of STUFF. If I could, I would pay for someone to take it all away. That’s not going to happen. My goal is to sell, toss or give away all of it by the end of the summer. Baby steps. I’ll start with 20 minutes a day. Let’s see how that goes. Wish me luck.

So my first blog post in a long time and a goal and plan to unburden myself from my STUFF. Maybe I am moving forward a bit 🙂

Thanks for reading if you made it this far,

Patti

P.S. This was written the last full week in June. Real progress being made on my goal; 6 or 7 empty totes! Grandson moved to undisclosed location, so I’ve decorated an antique box and keep adding his weekly postcards and a few treasures that I find.


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Phall Photo Friday; The Bay and The Bike

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Wild Bleeding Hearts, Phall Photo 2014

See The Blossoming Of The Garden Bike on my photo blog, Phall Photos http://wp.me/p3J4Ab-fH

and Morning Glory Evening On Willipa Bay at http://wp.me/p3J4Ab-fq

I’m setting this to publish on Friday morn, as I’m off to more adventures. I’m going to see Kevin in Packwood. Hopefully, we’ll have good weather and I can go check on all the wild plants that I’ve been following with photos. I look forward to seeing how Kevin’s veggie garden is going too. Oh, and the hummingbirds. I hope to see some new birds at the feeders with seeds.

Saturday morn, we’re taking off for the Portland area to see his mom, Mrs. M. We’ll stay over one night, then head back to Packwood Sunday afternoon. The latest school shooting took place just down the road from his mom’s place. I can only imagine the anger, fear and sadness of that community. I took a lot of photos there this fall and it was one of the places I was going to take Kevin, but we’ll probably do that next trip. Instead, I hope I can find one of the back roads to some vineyards and a great view of Mt. Hood.

If we’re not too tired, we’ll probably play a game of pool and listen to some music. I’ll head home Monday, with a stopover in Centralia to see my children, grands and maybe an uncle, aunt or cousin. If there’s things for me to do at my aunt’s, I’ll probably stay the night at Sara’s.

Then I’m home for the rest of June, except a trip to Bremerton to consult with an oral surgeon. Since I got some white picket fence from my aunt, the secret garden has been extended, so there is a lot of work to do on that. Greg does most of the structure work and I do the planning and planting. I hope to incorporate a sampling of the wild plants, berry bushes and shrubs from the strip of woods on his property. They will go along the length of my beach cave, where there is mostly shade.

I’ll post again on Newsday Tuesday. Phall Photo Friday is a weekly feature here. Phall= P(atti) Hall.

Take Care,

Patti, the gypsy cave woman 🙂


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Memoir Monday 1

The Memoir Monday feature will be posted every other Monday.

This memoir writing is tough stuff. Many of my online friends are from a circle of published or soon-to-publish memoir writers. Most are based on hard subjects; illness and injury, death by disease or suicide, and abuse or neglect. You have to wonder why these memoirs are so widely read. At first glance those subjects are sad or depressing.

Why do we read them? I have always read memoirs and biographies. Sometimes I’m drawn in by pure curiosity, other times the author is covering an experience that I have had, or someone close has had. I want to know how they got through it. I want a blatant or even a subtle message of hope. Yes, hope.

The author lived to write about it, so maybe they have a secret of survival to share with me. Maybe they write so well, with that just-right stroke of humor, that I will be whisked away on their magic carpet for a few hours. I hold onto the hope that the author not only survives, but thrives after their crisis. Hope. I read memoirs for hope.

Hope may also be the reason that I keep hitting delays in my own memoir. August will be five years since Paul’s death. The memoir keeps pulling me back to the hard memories, when I am beginning to see the light of happy memories of Paul, in my everyday life. Yet…we both truly wanted to share our journey with others. We wanted to offer help along the way, for others in a health crisis, and we wanted to offer hope.

That is why I took on Memoir Mondays. I need to get this show on the road! I want to share this part of the journey with my community. I would love some feedback. I plan on exploring the topic of memoir, as well as some resource links for others who are writing memoirs. I’ll review some memoirs and announce it when my friends publish their memoirs. There is a large community of memoir writers online, so this won’t all be new information, but it will be what I think is interesting, and what I think you might enjoy.

In the mean time, here is some of the writing from within my own thick “Memoir” file.

 

A little background: My husband, Paul, spent a year in and out of hospitals, and in short-term housing near the main hospital, while fighting Acute Myeloid Leukemia and the Graft Versus Host Disease (GVHD) that he got as a result of a bone marrow transplant. During that year, I kept family and friends updated by way of an online patient journal on Care Pages. The following excerpts are from the memoir I’m writing, and were written during a few days of the last hospital stay:

June 13, 2009 Last night we had our best sleep in a long time. That’s good, but really, we’re funnier when we go sleepless in Seattle. Since yesterday, Paul has a bit of medication-caused edema in his belly and arms. He is still taking walks around the hallway loop, 10-40 minutes a day. He’s trying to do his exercises, but his belly argues with too much movement.

The biopsies from Tuesday’s procedure showed that Paul has adeno virus in his stomach now. They have added two more drugs to fight it, and more fluids before and after the new antiviral. It’s a toss up which is worse, the virus or the treatment. The other drug protects him from the damage the antiviral causes. What a viscous circle. They continue to try and balance his glucose, but it keeps dropping low , then spiking high. They began a new plan today and it has stayed pretty even so far. Through it all, Paul pushes on to do everything he can to get better.

Wishing we were there,

Patti & Paul

June 14, 2009 (warning–talk of needles) Paul is doing better today. His cramping belly has let up a lot. This was ATG day, when they pre-medicate him, which sends him off to a pretty deep sleep. This eve he had his weekly x-ray. We walked earlier, and will walk again later.
Tomorrow is ECP day, when he is hooked up to a machine in his room for 3 1/2 hrs. I can’t remember if I told you all about it or not, but they put a large needle in a vein, then strap his arm to a small board to keep it immobile and straight. They take blood out, separate it, take one layer and treat it with a photosensitive drug, then pass the treated portion under UV lights, then the machine puts it all back inside Paul’s vein. I have read some encouraging studies about this therapy, and we are hopeful that it can help clear out the GVHD.
Everything they are doing will take time, so we are settled in for the long haul. We’re up for it, though. Whatever it takes to get us back home and Paul healed.
Husky stadium is outside our window, so we have been watching the flurry of graduation taking place this weekend. It is surreal to watch all these young people celebrating starting out their lives full of hope, from a hospital room window, where we fight for Paul’s life.
Paul says to tell you all, “Hi!” and thanks for all the support.
Paul & Patti

More background. Paul passed away in our bed at home on August 9, 2009. Less than a month later, I started back with my emails to friends and family, while I tunneled through grief and estate issues.

Sept 2, 2009 BLOG BLOG BLOG BLOG—It’s all about me! (I really know it isn’t)

Just tonight, I realized that I miss doing the updates about Paul’s health and our daily lives as fighters-for-his-life in a foreign land (hospital in Seattle). I thought that I could continue in a private journal, although the feedback is disappointing :>) So now I will write about me fighting for my mental life in this foreign land of Paul Is Gone. I will share the journey with you, because it is a habit that I still need.

I went to the doc today because a sore throat kept me up all night. I just have some infection in my throat and sinuses. With a few antibiotics I’ll be on the mend. I feel like hell, okay? I’m only up now, because Mark (family friend, lives close) signaled with his gate bell, that he was dropping off provisions, along with a mocha from my Aunt Judee. I couldn’t get back to sleep. I got up to see if no news was still good news—yes, it is! That means no evil attacks about the estate today. Someone spread the “rumor” that there was going to be a sale here this Saturday. Friends and family think the rumor was spread just to worry me, ahhhh, success for whoever started it!

I feel like such a scholar; I added “Judee” and “ahhhh” to the dictionary! There’s just something empowering about adding words to a dictionary… my personal dictionary on my computer…but STILL!

Finally, I changed the auto insurance to only cover my truck. One more thing done. Oh, that would be two, as I also called to get paperwork started for a small pension.

From the long, wide deck overlooking the back yard and acreage; A little after 8 P.M., and here comes that moon, right on time. That was my entertainment last night; watching as Jupiter chases the moon up the hill and over the tree tops. Much better than My Name Is Earl—sorry, Paul, but anything is better than Earl. I just realized that the moon actually rises in front of, and then above Jupiter. When the moon finally takes the lead, Jupiter resumes the chase across the sky. That’s way better than that episode when Earl got stuck in jail. I do not miss television. I would watch unlimited hours to have Paul back.

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Thanks for being here,

Patti


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A-Z April Challenge; V is For Vertical

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Glass wall in new secret garden.
PHALL PHOTO 2014

I could have waited for tomorrow and placed this glass wall photo in “W” for Wall, but I can be a bit impatient at times…that last part would fit in “U” for understatement! The camera continues to be an issue. I’m learning to use the camera on my phone, until I can find a teeny tiny screwdriver to repair my camera—no, the ones made for eyeglass repairs are too big. My neighbor even made me one, but it only lasted for 4 screws.

My secret garden is coming along. Neighbor/friend, Greg, brought more beach stones in today. I finished lining the bicycle basket with moss, then filled it with potting soil, an azalea, pansies and alyssum. I wired a basket to the front and planted seeds in it, and there is the mossy clay pot on the seat, filled with flowers. When I decide the bike’s permanent spot, I’ll plant ivy below each tire.

The glass block wall climbs up along the fence. Soon the annuals will spill green leaves and multi-colored flowers over the sides and down the front of the glass blocks.

This garden is growing into more than a memorial to people I have lost. It’s also a celebration of wishes fulfilled; I have hauled those blocks along with me (with a lot of help from family and friends) for three home moves over 15 years. I have collected special pots and garden trinkets all of my adult life. The glass wall incorporates two wishes into one: to use the blocks in a garden, and to fill all of my special pots with flowers.

Many of the plants and paraphernalia came from gardens past, and friend/family gardens. This garden will be filled to overflowing with memories of people, places, hopes and dreams.

If you see a plant you would like a piece of, just let me know, as they are pretty easy to mail. If you see a spot in my garden, for something you are growing in your garden, I would be happy to add more friends to the secret garden. Mom is sending me some starts from her garden, as soon as the snow melts!

1writeplacewordpress at gmail dot com or you can private message me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/patti.hall.3950

Happy Gardening,

Patti

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Garden Bicycle
PHALL PHOTO 2014

 

Hey, I hope you find time to check out some of the other A-Z April Challenge blogs here:

http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/p/a-to-z-challenge-sign-uplist-2014.html


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One Year on Word Press. Thanks!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Yes, it has been a year since I began blogging. Even though it was very lonely the first few months, you eventually found me and have kept me going with your support and encouragement ever since. The secret to bringing folks to your blog is so simple: Get out and visit, comment and “like” other blogs. That’s it. Go forth and make friends :>)

PHALL PHOTO 2013

PHALL PHOTO 2013

Here’s how the first 6 months went for me. I didn’t know one blogger and had no idea how to blog. After a couple months of loneliness, I started searching for info about memoir and children’s writing and publishing. During my quest for info I started visiting other blogs, I made some friends. Adding photos to my posts seemed to bring more people to this little community. Popping in on Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites, really brought some new faces to The Write Place.

I hope to add some highlights of the second half of my first year in the next few days, but for now, here is what I was up to my first six months…

PHALL PHOTO 2013

PHALL PHOTO 2013

Six entries in March 2013, including things like:

I posted a quote that seemed to fit my state of mind as I began this new endeavor of public blogging, writing and (hopefully) publishing. “Do not hurry, do not rest,” by Goethe. As fast as I wanted to get started, I knew that I also wanted to take my time and not make a bunch of (public) mistakes.

I was unsure of what/how to begin, but decided to use my long dormant maiden name for my writing. I posted a poem inspired by my mother, who instilled the love of reading and humor in me. Another poem that I posted that first month reflected the pain of the sudden and unexpected loss of one of my sisters the year before.

Sunrise at Westhaven Beach 3

Sunrise at Westhaven Beach, WA w/Coast Guard Tower. Phall Photo 2013  

The post, Keeper Book Synopsis, http://wp.me/p3i5jo-x tells the genesis story of the handcrafted “Keepers” that my friend (Leslee) and I created years ago. My hopes are to publish the stories that I wrote for each one. I also finished typing a 2500 word story that I wrote for my children in 1996.

The last entry of March 2013 says, in part, “I woke up this morning, well, it was really almost 11. Anyway, I was looking around and my eye caught on some star wands that I need to give my granddaughters, from a mutual friend. Soon I had a story rumbling in my head and I was off. I have been writing and editing all damn day long, and half the night! I made some coffee, finally ate a snack, packed some things for my move [home relocation] tomorrow and wrote like crazy. I completed a children’s story 10 words shy of 4000 words. Crazy. It just came out. Does it happen like that for you? And, hey, I have no illusions that this would not get whittled in half by a real editor, but I’m good with that. It is the process that is so…gripping, so addictive.”

April- 12 entries. This was my third month going to the local writer group that I joined, and I posted,  “Have been checking out and “following” several other writer blogs. Have been “invited” to join a writer site that allows us to give and receive feed-back. I am learning about the current trends in writing and publishing…” Another entry, Good Grief, A Widow Writes A Memoir, http://wp.me/p3i5jo-V explains some of the things I was learning about memoir writing and how painful it can be to write about Paul’s illness and death. Still is.

Breakfast for fawn. Across from my driveway. PHALL PHOTO 2013

Breakfast for fawn. Across from my driveway.
PHALL PHOTO 2013

I posted about a writer retreat and a writer conference in Homer, Alaska, which is also home to one of my sisters and her husband. I began taking a writing class taught by a local writer, and I met several other writers there. I posted a poem that I wrote for Paul’s 60th birthday in 2007. I made an ambitious attempt at a blogging schedule. Hilarious, if you really know me; the “s” word and me are not close.

I signed onto several more social media venues and shared some sites with helpful information for writers. I touched on some newsy information in one post, about the way technology is taking away our privacy. I wrote a poem about the deaths and injuries in the Boston marathon bombing and the explosion in Texas. I posted a short story about a child molester/monster.

Kites down on beach. PHALL PHOTO 2013

Kites down on beach.
PHALL PHOTO 2013

I moved Maggie (my trailer/cave/home) from the bay outside of Westport, into Westport proper and closer to the beach. The worst shock and heartache of my life happened on the 26th, when my grandson died. Still dealing with the other recent losses in my life, I stopped blogging for awhile.

May- 13 entries. I lost my mind a bit, but returned to blogging late in the month, with 2 poems on grief and loss. Lady In The Cave http://wp.me/p3i5jo-1N and Treasured Souls http://wp.me/p3i5jo-1P  were followed by a post complaining about the new parameters for the medical definition of grief. I wrote a few other poems/essays and shared some of the writing/publishing information that I was learning. Still very few visitors or followers on my blog, but I kept on. This was my first poetry/photo combo post: Beach Bird Bliss http://wp.me/p3i5jo-2c and it made me realize how much readers enjoy photos along with the words.

Fresh seed pod on tree. PHALL PHOTO 2013 Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS19

Fresh seed pod on tree.
PHALL PHOTO 2013
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS19

June- 22 entries. This was a very busy writing month and I had some fun with the essay, Things That Go Rrrrr, Crash, and Drip In The Night http://wp.me/p3i5jo-4w. I also got better at working with photos and started posting photos for Word Press Daily Prompts and Weekly Photo Challenges. I posted quite a bit under Writing Journal as I learned about and organized for successful memoir writing. The post, New! Dedicated Memoir Page and Sneak Peek of Prologue http://wp.me/p3i5jo-3m tells the story of how I got from the house that Paul and I shared, to living at the beach. What I Would Tell You Now http://wp.me/p3i5jo-3v is a letter to my late husband, written long after he was gone. I also started writing and submitting book reviews this month.

Butterfly on Flower in my friend's garden. Phall Photo 2013

Butterfly on Flower in my friend’s garden.
Phall Photo 2013

These are busy days, but I will try to post the summary of July-December 2013, in the next few days… Still not smoking and happy about it, over 2 months later!!!!!!!! Was thrilled to know that one of my sisters quit smoking 4 days ago too. So cool.

Happy Almost Spring!

Patti

Thistles PHALL PHOTO 2013

Thistles
PHALL PHOTO 2013

 


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Quit This, Lose That; Once A Phoenix, Always A Phoenix

phoenix

Phoenix Rising from the fire and ashes.
PHALL PHOTO 2013

This time I want to keep the pretty feathers, please. Those ashes just don’t suit me.

You’re not the only one. It’s hard not to wonder if this blogger will ever get back to writing and get published. Even I wonder. With so many changes in such a short period, it will be tough to get back to my goal of publishing books. But, hey, if I can quit smoking, lose weight and make room for romance after several years of loss and heartache…well, I think anything is possible, don’t you? Especially since, not one of those monumental things, were on my To-Do list. In fact, they were all on my To-Ignore list.

The quit-smoking thing continues to stump us all. I have no idea how it happened. I remember being a bit miffed that there was never anywhere warm for me to smoke here (at my folks’ home in Alaska). I know that Kevin and I were talking about taking walks, hikes and other recreational activities, once I got back to Washington in the spring. I’d listened to several… um, let’s just be nice and say, concerns, yes, the folks had shared some concerns about my smoking.

They’d offered up pills, patches, fake smokes, and magic potions. No, wait, no magic potions, but it did seem like nonsense that I should need to…okay, maybe not nonsense, but why should I take the long route? I had a pack left at that point and when I smoked the last cigarette from it, I smoked my last cigarette. 5 weeks ago! Weird.

I think it was the next day that I quit my addiction to coffee. And, although I do have a mocha now and then, I’m no longer drinking caffeine from morning until night. I did not grow hair on my chest or cause bodily harm to others. The folks say that I haven’t even been a grouch. I feel calm and have had no gonna-die-if-I don’t-have-some nicotine-or-caffeine moments. No headaches either. It begs to be typed, so...WTF? It had to be Leslee magic.

Caves induce fat. Before I came to take care of mom in Alaska, I’d been hanging out alone in my cave for far too long. Aside from beach walks and/or photo excursions, there hadn’t been much motion or mobility. A bike ride through the neighborhood once in a while, a few minutes on the stationary bike, sure. In addition, I might have eaten an apple fritter or two. I think I understand now (after experimenting just a little) that even good chips are bad chips.

After I quit my serious addictions of cigarettes and caffeine, evil food was standing there, staring me in the face, “Look, you have nothing else to do with those hands and that mouth, come on over here… into the kitchen…” I caught on pretty quickly and started drinking lots of water and nibbling bunny food. Dad has pretty well given up enticing me with evil things to eat, although I think he still sneaks them when I’m not around.

Tomorrow I will do the unfathomable and join a gym. Mom is making me. We’re getting our hair cut and styled too (like that will make my gym pain any better). Did I tell you that mom “did” my hair and put makeup on me the other day, to take a picture of me? Guess who it was for? Right you are! I hope body tattoos and weird piercings aren’t part of this crazy ritual. I keep telling her that we have seen each other!

Don’t worry about her, she’s just excited for us. Whatever I am on the outside, I’m still me on the inside. Mom knows that :>)

It looks like I might be home by mid-March. Not May, as planned. May is waaaayyyy too far away. Yeah, the romance thing. Mom figures that Kevin and I have talked more than most couples who have known each other for years. Hey, we have a lot of catching up to do…38 years is a long stretch. Not only that, but we’re making plans. To be together.

As far as the writing goes, this will be my next great challenge: How to finish the chapters of the memoir about the love, illness and loss of my Paul, while I’m starting a new chapter in my life? There’s a lot to think about and it’s good to know that Kevin will be there for me and that many of you will offer up your thoughts and support as well.

Thank You,

Patti, who is not a mail order bride (at least I don’t think I am…wait, maybe he ordered me from mom? She has been acting weird.)


28 Comments

My Peeps Are Romance Junkies!

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My Peeps Are Romance Junkies, except Elaine, but she did tell me I was a “love story tease.” And yes, Leslee, it’s the pizza guy:>) I’m taking dear Harula’s advice and beginning this post with the romance, so there’s to be no mutiny on this ship! :>)

Just to recap; Kevin and I had our first date at age 15, Kevin’s brother and my sister married a few years later (still happily married), Kevin’s mother was against any of her sons hanging out with my family, Kevin tried to catch my airplane before I left Alaska, he missed by 15 minutes, we never saw each other again–for 38 years, we spent this New Year’s Eve together in his Washington home, I left for Alaska 1 day later, Kevin and I have both recently added “In a relationship” to our Facebook profile.

Over the years, Kevin’s mother had a change of heart towards my family, and my sis in particular. They are now very close, which is why sis sent me to help her mother-in-law (Kevin’s mother & my Mrs. M) break out of the physical rehab center. When I returned home, following my second week of staying with Mrs. M, I got a private message from her youngest son, Kevin. He wanted to know how things went with his mom.

At least that’s how he began the conversation. I’m pretty sure he was more curious about the girl he took out on his first date. No matter the pretense (or not) of that first PM conversation, it has continued (every single day), since that first day. We’ve stayed connected by phone, email, private FB message, and that short 24-hours in person. Yes, we’re 15 again, but what do we have to lose?

It’s amazing how romantic a guy can be when courting from 2,369 miles away. We “talk” on and off every day on FB private messages, in between the life we are leading in person in Alaska and Washington. He calls me every evening at the same time, and we usually talk until one or both of us goes to bed.

Every morning I log onto Facebook and start my day with a sweet message and a link to a romantic Youtube song from Kevin. He recently started taking walks with his camera almost every day. That means I also get a private photologue of his walks, along with his cool and funny narrative about what he is seeing. Yep, 15, for sure and loving it.

2,369 miles apart, and we are planning a vegetable garden, composting and there’s even talk of raising chickens together. Ahhhh. We are both working on our health; eating better, walking more and I quit smoking (in case you forgot). Kevin leans towards logic (logically romantic) and that’s how he came up with us calling ourselves boyfriend/girlfriend.  Either way, we are 54 going on 15, maybe 16 at the most.

My return ticket is for May. How in the world will we make it 4 more months? Will we? Or will my mom think our romance is more important than my help in her garden? She’s so engrossed in this, that she is ready to send me home, now that she can get around better with her walker. We still don’t know if I will be needed if my brother has surgery…

Did you happen to notice that I’ve written a lot about what everyone else is thinking and doing, however I haven’t said much about my own thinking or doing? I just noticed. To remedy this slip, I guess I have to tell on myself. Damn. It’s so much easier and funner to tell on everyone else.

So, yes, I was curious about Kevin. And although, the details are foggy, I’ve always felt a little flutter when Kevin’s name was brought up by my sis or my brother-in-law.

And yes, I did tell Mrs. M. that I would come see her, and that I’d probably go see Kevin when I came back in May. Okay, so I couldn’t wait until May! The more we private-messaged, the more I wanted to meet him. He made me laugh and smile so much that I even made it through the dreaded holidays. I loved his humor, his vocabulary and the way that he could laugh at himself. Yes, I said vocabulary.

You all know me, so you know that I’ve also stressed about coming out of my cave and everything that goes along with that. As a friend pointed out, what about my solitude that I so enjoy? Hmmm. I think the tides are turning and solitude may have to take a lesser role for now. It seems that being with others is the main meal and solitude will be the dessert.

A million more doubts fill my mind (more about me, than Kevin) but I am trying to set them aside as we get to know each other over the internet and phone. I’m just going to put on the cruise control and enjoy being 15 again, like I never did back then:>)

Peace,

Patti

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