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Posts tagged ‘independence’

Why Do We Live Here?

scrape-windshield

Written by Bobbe White for “The White Pages”  WTAD.COM

Why Do We Live Here?

Frankly on weekends like the last one, I do not know.  It was simply too cold and icy to justify; too treacherous to visit family, stay upright while attempting to walk into work or do anything, really. All of this on the weekend before Christmas! What rotten luck for us procrastinators.

It all started Friday after work. Here we were: coats zipped, gloves on and remote start buttons activated. Unless you’re like me, without remote start. We had a windshield scraping fest instead. But, it was as if Santa’s elves – with and without remote start- had descended upon our parking lot!  Even though it meant the remote starter people would have had to stay late, they did! It was the coolest thing ever. No, actually, it was cold as H-E-Double Hockey Sticks! And hockey players are the only ones who would’ve found our parking lot remotely enjoyable. Anyway, everyone helped everyone else get the icy buildup cracked enough to drive away safely. It was heartwarming and almost great fun. Almost.

Saturday was colder and windier. Ice drizzled on our cars. I chose to use floor mats on the windshield, to minimize scraping after work. It worked well on the left side, but the wind swooped in and took the right side mat, which found me executing a double-twist, triple Salchow* jump on the iced parking lot, to retrieve it.

*Salchow (sal’– kau): a figure skating jump with a takeoff from the back inside edge of one skate followed by one or more full turns in the air and (ideally) landing on the back outside edge of the opposite skate.

I wanted to go home. Customers had been sparse during work and Broadway was ghostly quiet, but while I was out, I went to the cleaners, the liquor store and the mall. Fortunately, I’d dressed warmly in my down-filled parka. I became uber toasty inside the mall. Then the zipper broke. In order to take it off, I struggled to slide it over my hips. Forced is closer. WD-40 anybody?  And I thought the Salchow was difficult!  When it was time to go outside and wiggle back into my coat, it was exhausting. A woman watched me curiously. I made eye contact with her and said-as if I always put my coat on over my hips, “My zipper broke, okay?” She smiled and edged away from me.

Sunday, was more of the same: icy roads, frigid temps, and the addition of a few inches of snow. A winter trifecta! I stayed home. The end.

Wait! I need to answer the first question: why do we live here? We live here because when the temperature rises to 23 degrees, everyone loosens their woolen scarves a bit and remarks, “It’s nice out today?”  And they mean it.

Happy frantic shopping week! Stay warm and safe.

Do Something Scary: ROLL SOLO!

Dad and Mom did EVERYTHING together.
“Irv, we have a cocktail party Friday night.”
“Mkay” he’d say.
“Irv, we’re going to a couples’ shower at the Peterson’s pool.”
Dad, “Sure.”
Mom, “Millers want to meet us in Chicago next month.”
Dad, “I’ll reschedule something. Tell them we’ll be there!”
So it went for sixty-plus years. My world didn’t unfold so handily. There’s been begging, arguing, whining, pouting. Then, some mother-in-law wisdom dawned on me. Prior to our marriage, she said, “If you wait for your husband to do everything with you, you’ll miss a lot.”

Flashback 1975-Illinois State-Jethro Tull; a must see! Except “somebody” didn’t want to go. Imagine the pure joy I felt for my boyfriend, now husband, when a buddy gave him an extra ticket. (May I say, I seethed over this for 27 years, until I saw Tull in St. Louis? That’s stupid.

So, how does a woman start living/stop missing? Just yesterday, I decided to visit Hermann, MO for the day. I’m a bit impulsive; that may not work for you. I get that. After asking three friends and three declines, however, do you go or no? At 9:00a.m., I headed towards Hermann. Would Hermann have been more fun with friends? Perhaps. Nonetheless, it was a world class day; no discussions as to, “Do you want to do this, do that, go here, go there, eat here or there?”

When weighing decisions, I tend to acquiesce – which is why I don’t shop well with others, either. As a result, my day becomes their ideas, not mine. Occassionally, it’s empowering to be in charge of the schedule.
Rolling solo boosts my self-confidence. It’s about being comfortable in your own company, with phone off and stowed away. It’s the satisfaction of seeing something, going somewhere or doing something, which otherwise, you’d have missed. While safety reigns supreme, I won’t lie, rolling solo requires stretching your personal fear factor.But it’s definitely worth the effort.

Below are a few items from my “RSOMs” (Rolled Solo or Missed) list:
1) Flew to Venezuela to join a sports coaches group for the Central American Games.
2) Dined at Chicago’s, 96th Floor Signature Room. One word: VIEW!
3) Flew to Paris to see my daughter.
4) Saw two shows, in Vegas: “Mamma Mia” and “Menapause, the Musical.
5) Ditto, Chicago, for “Vagina Monologues”, “Moving On”, and “Rent” in Des Moines.
6) Locally, I’ve attended live theater, ballet, movies, weddings and funeral visitations alone. In fact,
there isn’t much I won’t attend alone, if need be. And I’m happier as a result. Oddly enough, the one thing in Quincy I haven’t done is dined solo. I know practically everybody in town and people tend to feel sorry for soloists, or think we’re weird. So, if you ever see me dining solo, think I’m weird, but please don’t sympathize. I probably just wanted a nice meal.

Now, go conquer a fear and a desire. Do something scary. Roll solo, occasionally. You’ll want to high-five yourself. bw