SoCS: social



There is a sign on the road to town that advertises a Strawberry Social today but its been so cold I wonder how many people are social enough to go anyway, even though there are no strawberries yet. (Or unaware that strawberry season is way behind)

But this isn’t about strawberries, this is about ‘social’.  I’m not but I know I should at least try to be because being alone all the time is not a good thing. Its bad for your health, mentally and ultimately physically.

I don’t just volunteer in a mental health program: I’m a member. It does me a world of good to meet with this group and get my dose of social contact. Perfect for an introvert; a scheduled one or two hours a week. Boom, its 2:30. . .  that’s enough, I can go home feeling pretty good.

It sure beats going to a party, feeling like the odd-man-out and wondering when its polite enough to leave. Or ‘going for coffee’ to chit-chat: no thanks.

If you get chance to watch “One Nation Under Stress” with Sanjay Gupta, please do so. He talks about the importance of being social: we are hard-wired as social beings. The success of our society today depends on us looking after each other and not just looking out for ourselves.

For introverts that is not easy. You have to step out of your comfort zone but its worth it. Those few hours with my group does me a world of good. People I know and trust, feel safe with. People like me!

However, I’m not envious of social butterflies. I don’t know how they can stand it! I would be exhausted by their lives. I really need to crawl back into my mental cave and not talk after a lot of social interaction. Re-charge my batteries.

Lately I’ve had more company staying with me than the whole 11 years I’ve lived here!  Its all been good; but I’m happy to have this rainy weekend to myself.

My social schedule is on my fridge; Its supported by United Way and our community health centre. It’s Free and those who don’t have a car can arrange to be picked up. This is great for rural people living in isolation. Programs like this are so important!

It sure means a lot to me.

June OD




Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “social.” Use it any way you’d like.

RDP; Surprising Bats


I would like to have seen the look on those bat’s faces when they saw this;


Surprise! you bats.

They did this last year: got into the soffit vents over my bedroom, sounding like they were right over my head trying to get in! It tried moth balls to no avail, they drove me crazy all summer. This year I got the big guns; an owl.

I think it worked! Its been 3 days now without them waking me up.


I actually have seen the look of surprise on a bat’s face.

I was caving in West Virginia on my hands and knees in a passage that had many bats.  I heard a bat squeal so I looked around but didn’t see a hurt bat so I kept going. Heard the squeal again and as I hurried on my hands and knees realized that no matter how far or fast I went I could hear the squeal the same.

I look over my shoulder and there it was; a tiny, little bat sitting on my shoulder. I let a cry of surprise and fear and so did it, at exactly the same time. I’ll never forget being face to face with that bat when we both opened out mouths and squealed!

My friend, also a female, was behind me. We both freaked out trying to move this poor little bat with our muddy cave gloves. She got it onto a nearby ledge.

I often think of Bat-Boy when I reminisce, except this bat was so very tiny.

BatBoyBut that’s what it looked like!

SoCS: point and write



Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “open book, point, write.” Pick up the closest book to you when you sit down to write your post. Close your eyes, open the book, and place your finger on the page. Whatever word or phrase your finger lands on, write about it.


This was so funny I had to use it. The first book closest to me was Rolling Stone photographs but it had no words at all so I chose the next book; “Tiling Complete”. Ha! as if I would ever attempt tiling my bathroom.

My finger landed on this photo:

can man

My finger landed right on the toilet. Without context or reading the subtext it looked like a guy missing his mark.  NO! Lift the lid! You’re supposed to go in the bottom part!

RDP: directional

Is that really a word: directional? I doubt if I have ever used it in a sentence.

The sun is directional. If the sun is shining I have to work outside. There is so much to do right now. I usually do what bothers me the most when I look out the window. Right now that is my Gold Flame Azalea with a foot of grass growing in front of it. All the shrub beds need weeding and mulching.

On Wednesday I did not want the sun. I wanted a day off, not a day doing housework, a day OFF and for that I need rain. Of course I had to do some housework in the morning but I lounged and watched TV all afternoon. No, I don’t feel guilty about it at all. My PVR is full of stuff I save, some especially for daytime viewing; like Ghost Adventures. I can’t watch that at night; its too close to bedtime. Then its not so entertaining! The sun is directional, directing ghosts away. At night you are lying there with your eyeballs bugged open like this will be the first time you see a ghost.

Like the time I saw an orb; or thought I did.

I was lying in my bed and saw a small green orb of light on my ceiling. My eyes bugged open and my heart started beating faster. I blinked quickly a few times but it was still there and then it started moving. I was really freaking out! I could not believe what I was looking at! Then it blinked a couple of times but a familiar kind of blink . . . it was a firefly walking on my ceiling. Because I’m short-sighted a bit of light appears round when blurry. Relief flooded through my body and I laughed; it was only a firefly. I can reach the ceiling standing on my bed so I caught it in a jar. So happy, so relieved.

But I digress. The sun is directional; I will work outside until my body refuses to do any more.





SoCS: a brief respite

Aahhh . .  peace. Temporarily; good thing she sleeps in. I have silence, for now. Well, there are birds chirping and leaves rustling but that’s even better than silence. Its peaceful.

My friend who visited me back in March is back again. I guess I didn’t loose her when I wrote a scathing letter about how much she talks, loudly and intensely, then sent to it to her instead of my sister. And she was still here!

She thought it was funny: in the end she was really a good sport. But she’s back and talking.

Last night was good because we had a campfire. Being outside seemed to dissipate the intensity. I think I will use that today and start up another fire and burn brush. The mosquitoes have begun so trail season is over. I hope to get out and walk on the beach but a friend posted a photo this morning showing the beach has disappeared due to high water. We’ll have to go check that out.

When I woke up this morning, I wished I was alone. Can you believe that? Like I don’t get enough time alone! What is wrong with me? Nothing . . . I just really like silence. Especially in the morning.

So I get my 2 coffees and can write this post while she sleeps. Perfect. Then I can ready myself for talk. At least she has interesting things to talk about and doesn’t spend the time talkin’ shit, putting people down.

Now that I pause to think about it; total silence wouldn’t be that great. I would have to put on some music or podcast or TV. . . after my coffee and computer time, that is. Morning I like quiet but total silence would be kind of scary. Sometimes total silence can pound on your eardrums, if you’ve been in a noisy environment. But I like loud music when I’m doing the dishes. (don’t have a dishwasher)

So I guess I really like peace and quiet. And don’t make me talk in the morning!





Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “silent/silence.” Use one or both in your post.

SoCS: cozy

Its dark and stormy but I’m cozy in my home. It makes me feel even more cozy that I don’t have to go anywhere. I still think back to having to work in that grocery store; having to get dressed in the uniform and go out into florescent lights, irritating music and stupid customers.

Cozy is what I live and work for. Everything I do is so I can end my day on soft fuzzy wraps watching TV and I’m not ashamed of that. I still wonder at people who can’t take a day off without feeling guilty. Not me: I love it.

There’s nothing better than watching an old movie on a rainy afternoon. I have a few on my PVR ready for a day like today. Such a cozy feeling.

Yesterday and many days before I was still burning wood in my woodstove! For sure this the latest I’ve ever done that.  But it was cool enough that my furnace would come on all day and I don’t want to order more propane at $400 a shot. One or two pieces of wood warms the house for the whole day and keeps it dry and cozy.

I don’t like getting dressed up and going out: it’s so uncomfortable. So many times I’m lying cozily on my couch thinking; “If I was anywhere else I would be wishing I was right here.”

Comfortable and cozy.


Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “rhymes with rosy.” Find a word that rhymes with “rosy” or use the word “rosy” and base your post on it.


RDP: regenerated.

Two weeks ago I experienced heartbreak and slumped into depression but now my happiness and contentment with my lot in life has been regenerated.

For those who follow me, you may have heard about one of my volunteer positions in a group called Circles. It helps those raised in poverty rise up and break self-defeating cycles. I was ‘paired’ with a young woman who has two children; a welfare mother. These woman are called ‘leaders’ as they are leading their children out of poverty. They are paired with middle class allies.

My leader didn’t show up for the first three Circles. I talked about her with another leader who I thought knew her better and might give me some insight.

When I finally met my leader my eyes were opened. She is depressed, (her mom died of a drug overdose last winter) and her kids are completely undisciplined. The three yr. old doesn’t have any words yet; he just grunts and hollers. She gives in. OMG I knew this was going to be hard.

Two weeks ago I was asked for an interview with the program leader. I thought it would be an update and advice, etc. I was handed a sheet of paper; the Ally Job Description.  When I was first interviewed, she read this to me but didn’t have copy. I guess we both forgot about it. There was something I had wrong and now I was being told “I wasn’t a good fit for the group.” I was asked to leave the Circle.

I thought confidences were within the Circle but I did not know you weren’t supposed talk about your leader with another leader. This happened 3 or 4 weeks earlier and no one spoke to me about it. I had written the program director twice in that time and had no reply. Apparently, she told me afterward, she was waiting to talk to her employer.

I sat with the job description in my hand and my mouth hanging open. It was fortunate we weren’t alone: The head of all the program directors was there and she really softened the blow. I’m sure it would have been worse without her there.

I held back my tears until I got to my car and cried for two days. It was just like falling in love, then breaking up and getting your heart broken.

Then I turned to the “I’m better off without him” phase.

One thing stands out: That was way beyond my pay grade!  In fact; my leader was way beyond my pay grade. I had already started worrying about her and trying to figure out what I could do to help her.  I was thinking of buying child car seats so I could pick her up.

Here’s an example of how hard this was going to be:  At my last Circles there was a guest speaker from the County who talked about a two- week program to help young people enter the work force.  It was set up like a job; 9-5, Monday to Friday and they get paid $15 an hour.  They learn to write resumes, learn about a wide variety of jobs from guest speakers, practice interviews. . . I know! Fantastic!

I said to my leader I would drive her to this if she wanted to do it. She said, “I’m not a morning person.”

Then there was going out for dinner every Thursday where I’m the only vegetarian and they make such a big deal about ‘finding me something to eat’ its ridiculous. Every week I would say; “There’s enough vegetables, carrot sticks and buns here for me.”  Now everyone can eat their meal in peace.

I started to think ahead to the winter; leaving in the dark and cold. How will my leader get there? She walks with a double stroller now. How will she get there in the winter?

So that’s how I’ve come to terms with it. Yes, it hurt. It was not my choice. But because of that choice I’m forced to go back to my happy, care-free existence, not worrying about her. Again; That was way beyond my pay grade!

I’m still doing Opening Doors and my exercise class.  I was assured they were “very happy with my work there.” That’s enough for me.

My happiness has regenerated!


SoCS: carefully


Carefully, I wrote to my friend who wants to come and stay with me for another 5 days. It wasn’t that long ago she was here for 5 days and that was too long.

We had not seen each other for 50 years. Yes, since the year of Woodstock. So it was great getting together but too long. I’m an extreme introvert and she’s an extreme extrovert. I guess time has made us what we are today in comparison to being 10-15 years old.

The talking wore me down after two days. I wrote a post about it and I don’t want to go over that again.

A week ago she asked, no; not asked, told me she was coming for 5 days. I didn’t say no.  Yesterday she started to think she had too much going on to come when she first planned.  She said, “That would give me only two non-driving days and that’s not enough.” Then she said it; “What do you think?”

Now I am very honest to the point of blurting out things that offend people. She asked me what I thought . . . I thought about posting a meme on Facebook about guests and fish . Hasn’t she heard that one?

Carefully, I wrote to my friend.  “Two days is not enough for you: five days is too much for me. The ball is in your court.”


(FYI: I did not send her this)




Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “adverb.” Start your post with any adverb and just run with it.