Veterans, Donuts and Honouring Commitments

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November 12, 2018, Prescott-

Today is an extension of Veterans Day, being the Monday after a Sunday holiday.  It is also the birthday of a friend, so there will be a small luncheon in her honour, just before Noon.  Before that, though, there is a donuts for vets event, at our local Veterans Center.

These two events will find me showing up, yet there is also the matter of tying up loose ends, by delivering the remaining items I had stored for the individual I mentioned yesterday.  That will begin the afternoon.  Then, I have several hours of “me-time”, and can enjoy the coolness of a crisp Fall day.  For the first time in a while, I will take my camera with me, and just walk-somewhere.

Commitments are huge, and one of the things I have had to work on-under my own terms, is presence.  I am making progress, despite occasional setbacks, and no amount of screaming and yelling on anyone’s part is going to deter me from meeting that goal.  My honour is intact.

I have found, once again, that the vast majority of people in the world are fine folks.  I am in a good place, in this community, and have been treated well on the road, also.  There was a brief period, last month, when I did not feel safe.  That came from giving too much power and importance to someone else-and that is behind me.  One must never hand control over to another, no matter how loud and manipulative that other person is.

Things are returning to good, once again.  Happy Veteran’s Day, Part II, to all who have served our nation.

 

Another New Dawn

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March 22, 2018, Prescott-

I got up well before sunrise, as usual, and went about the routine, except that coffee and breakfast waited until after my annual lab work for next Friday’s physical.  I was first in line, so that was an in/out process.

I did something else, with assurance from my spirit guides.  On what would have been my very frugal father’s 91st birthday, I tore up all correspondence from a sweepstakes company and tossed a few other pitches for money that I just don’t have to spare for them.  Dad always honoured his commitments and his obligations, and I walk, as best I can, in his footsteps.  I am assured that all else will follow, as needed.

It was another moment when I got a nice message from a good-hearted new online friend, and pondered my commitments for the rest of this month.  Meditation told me, once again, that my choices are just that, my own.  Nothing can really be imposed on us, except to pass on, when that day comes.

This dawn brought heavy cloud cover to us in Arizona, heavy rains to southern California and yet another heavy snowfall to the Northeast.  Punxsutawney Phil is rolling on the ground, laughing, with his little trick; the groundhog lied.

Calm and Bright

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January 2, 2016, Prescott- The sense of calmness was all around me, this blessed morning, as I walked downtown, to deposit my rent in the landlord’s account.  There were few outside, other than tourists headed to a taxi stand, baggage in tow.  In Wild Iris Coffee House, I took a hearty breakfast of oatmeal and coffee, surrounded by a dozen or so awakening souls, under the steampunk ceiling.  Calmness and brightness, then, are not confined to the ancient German skies that are illustrated in the most tranquil of all Christmas carols.

This year has started out as a benign counterpoint to the tumult of the last two years.  I’m certain it will not entirely remain so, with a turgid election facing our nation and the onward march of a world in transition.  It is, however, largely what we the people make it.

In my own space, I have determined to make small forward steps- like downsizing my possessions and their accompanying junk.  I no longer feel the need to keep every receipt from the last 7-10 years, what with the banks keeping electronic records.  I don’t have to hang on to all manner of keepsakes from every classroom I’ve covered since Penny passed on.  Books that I’ve read will be passed on to the Friends of Prescott Public Library.  My wardrobe will, gradually, be updated, with the oldies but goodies passed on to the clothing bins- a process I started this past year.

Exercise will be more consistent. I will show up in the gym more often. Travel will be more on foot, meaning I walk more, locally, and when away from this area, park in one spot and walk from there.  My visits to friends and family will be shorter in duration, and certainly less intrusive.  Indeed, as I look back, the best times I’ve had visiting with people are those in which I did not overstay.

These are commitments, not “resolutions”.  My resolve, though, has not changed, from years gone by.  I enjoy work, exercise, service, learning and being there for my loved ones.  The course will remain the same.

The Road to 65, Mile 52: Service

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January 19, 2015, Prescott-   This morning was taken up with a short march from Prescott College, to a circumambulation of the Yavapai County Courthouse, then to a nearby Methodist Church.  At the church, there were bagels (“California-style”, which means untoasted), cream cheese and assorted fruit, with choice of hot beverages.  We then enjoyed a fine performance by the St. Luke’s Ebony Christian Church Choir, from Prescott Valley, and an address by their pastor, Reverend Michael Cannon.  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s brief life of intense public service is the impetus for this day being held up as a National Day of Service, and Mr. Cannon’s admonition was for each of us to examine our own commitments.  He himself sounds like a man who lives each day in such commitment, judging from the accounts of others.

I have committed myself to acts of service to others, for some time.  Many of these are part of an organized effort.  Others are spontaneous and random, as a given day unfolds.  I don’t really see myself as selfish; nor as a hero.  Day by day, each of us can serve others, from the unsung acts of a dedicated parent, or caregiver, to the First Responder working to bring peace to a disastrous scenario.

There is one thing about service, though, that needs to be borne in mind.  It cannot be forced, nor can it be smudged by those who impose the pain of guilt on others.  Last night, several of us were given an indirect message that we were not doing enough to ease the plight of the homeless, and of a few shut-ins who live in a nearby community.  My reaction is, there is always more to be done, in a suffering world.  It cannot, however, be imposed upon us from the masters of guilt.   I trust that everyone who has good in their hearts will work, in some way, to relieve the suffering of those around them.  So it shall ever be.