Mary Beth Writes

Happy Solstice Quotes!

"This is the solstice, the still point of the sun, its cusp and midnight, the year's threshold and unlocking, where the past lets go of and becomes the future; the place of caught breath." Margaret Atwood.

“Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in.”
Leonard Cohen, Selected Poems, 1956-1968

“A person reading should be a person intensely alive. The book should be a ball of light in one's hand.” Ezra Pound

“How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a weary world.” William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice

“People often believed they were safer in the light, thinking monsters only came out at night.” C.J. Roberts, Captive in the Dark

“The brighter the light, the deeper the shadow.” Jay Kristoff, Nevernight

..

We are inundated by Covid news which is not a bad thing because this is a bad disease and we should be awake and aware. But in the middle of the ongoing reporting about the wildly infectious Omicron variant, I am picking up a subtheme that is also important.

On the news last night, a NYC hospital person said that a year ago they had 600 incredibly ill people crammed into the hospital. Today they have 30 incredibly ill patients in their ICU, almost all (maybe all, I can’t remember) unvaccinated people.

What is it like to get Covid when one IS vaccinated and boosted, when one has a home and access to medicines, soup, and time to rest?

Fall 2020 my daughter had Covid. I asked her this morning what it was like. Caveat: she is in her 30’s, exercises daily, and is a healthy eater!

She replied she felt pretty sick, although mostly just really tired. She didn’t have much of a sore throat or other symptoms. She felt a little nauseated the first few days, but she never threw-up. She was very fatigued for 4-5 weeks.

Did any of you have “lite” Covid? What are we looking at here? I do not want to get it. I have grandkids too young to be vaccinated; I don’t want to pass it to them. I don’t want to spread it to anyone. I wear a mask in public. At the same time, I want to have a realistic idea of what this sickness might be like for people who have taken all the precautions. 

I wrote to the Third Graders this morning:

Dear Kids,

I will write a short letter this morning because this is a short school week for you.

When I was a teenager, I often went for walks with my dog Sheba. I lived in the country, so our walks were through woods and fields. One of the places I liked best was a hill that overlooked a small river. It was peaceful on that hill; Sheba and I would sit and watch the river. 

One day we hiked there. Sat down. It was late fall and the world was beautiful and quiet.

Then there was a soft rustling noise.

I turned to look, and I am not lying! Out of the woods waddled a fat raccoon. That raccoon saw us and slowly walked TOWARDS us! It came to about three feet away from me, sat down, and watched the river with Sheba and me. Sheba growled deep in her throat but she didn’t bark or jump. 

All three of us sat there. Me, my dog, and a raccoon.

After a few minutes the raccoon got back up and waddled back into the woods.

I hope your winter break is wonderful with a few unexpected surprises in it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments

My church runs a thrift shop with the primary goal of making available to the community gently used items at very affordable prices. While volunteering there last Saturday, two women came in. Somehow one of them had connected with the manager of the thrift shop. It turns out the older of the two has custody of two of her elementary school aged grandchildren. The week before we met her, her husband had beat her badly. That night, with only the clothes on their backs, she fled with the two grandchildren. In other words, they had nothing. No clothes, no furniture, no household goods and no Christmas presents or decorations. We welcomed them and loaded the grandmother up with anything she chose to take, including toys...some new...wrapping paper, Christmas stockings, clothing and anything she wanted for their new apartment. In fact, they made two trips because they couldn't fit everything into the friend's vehicle on the first one. We all had tears. This was my Merry Christmas.
Mary Beth's picture

Wow! This is an awful story turned into a pretty good story because people took care of people. I'm glad you and your church were there to help and support a woman who was already helping and supporting.

A year ago, my mom (83) tested positive for COVID. She got it from her roommate. She developed a cough, and was light headed for about 10 days. That is it. Mom is a fit 83 year old, walks 3 times a week at a fairly fast pace, eats well, as a positive attitude. She is now fully vaccinated including booster, and got her shot as soon as she could get it in March, despite her mild case. We know people that have not been so lucky, we know people that have been lost. We are gathering on Friday with deep gratitude that we can. Patricia
Mary Beth's picture

This is helpful to hear. We hear so much about the terrible cases, not enough abut what to expect if it does not knock one out of the park. Thanks.

My Dad, in his 70's, not the best of health is vaccinated and contracted Covid. He was fatigued, no appetite, felt like he had a cold and generally looked ill. He has completely recovered with no side effects. My Mom, living in the same home and going to the same places as he did ( grocery store, pharmacy,etc) is also vaccinated and did not get Covid. The vaccine does it's job, it works.
Mary Beth's picture

Thanks. I just read this morning that here in Wisconsin, 61% of people have at least one vaccine. I can hardly believe that it is this low. We already know a person needs to have both vaccines plus the booster to have truly effective protection from the worst of omicron - and so, it seems to me, about half of Wisconsin is vulnerable to wildfire Covid. Hang on, pals, it's going to be a bumpy ride.

Good writing, as usual! Love the picture and you know exactly what it makes me think about.

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The Good Old Days???

9/28/2022

Over the past few days Len and I have been emailing with two cousins regarding this interesting topic.

Were the Good Old Days All That Good?

The four of us grew up in the late 40’s, 50’s, 60’s. We are from three hometowns. Two of us were and still are science nerds. Two of us grew up in the same family and church.

This is what Len said about his childhood.

This is a more intense version of joking to kids that our smallpox scars are power ports.

Send $ to Welcome the Strangers Among Us.

If you have a heart for new immigrants among us and are open to another way to support them – Listen Up.

Three Things - Surviving the News, Our Web, Hiking Pix

9/16/2022

Len and I went on a hike yesterday at the Monches section of the Ice Age Trail and the photos are from there. 

Was it only a week and a half ago? My how time flies when one lives in an open and free society under daily assault.

3 Things - Cool, 9/11, Bulbs

The photo is from Hiroshima. It's the shadow of what was there before the bomb. 

9/11/2022

Yesterday it was hot and muggy and sticky. Almost every day since May has been hot and muggy and sticky. We have a small house with air conditioning; utility bills are not prohibitive so I am a lucky that way.  It’s usually cool enough in here.

But spending time outside, as one ought to do, is perpetually hot and muggy and sticky. I’m weary of sweating. Most weeks my laundry has included nearly twenty spent t-shirts … just from me.

3 Things - QE2, Triplets, & Me

The death of Queen Elizabeth dominated the news yesterday and it still thick afoot today. ‘Thick afoot” is my attempt to sound like a wee English countryside river animal political pundit. You know. An otter with a pipe. A weasel in a dark suit and an appropriate tie. A crow with an Hermès scarf.

I have two responses to QE2’s passing.

Wild Horses & Other Beauties

8/23/2022 

I first saw this photograph on Twitter in April. I don’t know the photographer, but the photo stopped me in my tracks. 

The Twitter handle of this person is Chris Byrne @ChrisByrnePhoto. He has a website; I think he leads photography workshops. His website is: chrisbyrnephotography.com.

Meanwhile, here I am, awestruck by a beautiful and wild place I will likely never go. It’s called Torres de Pain and it’s a national park in Chile. https://national-parks.org/chile/torres-del-paine

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