A Smashed Peep (and some other stuff)

I ran away for a long lunch Thursday. Basking in the sunshine and walking the bike path at a favorite park felt like the epitome of freedom. Everything is COVID closed but you can still walk and drive around the lake.

This car turned my head.

And I went back for a closer look at these Peep bunnies, clearly run over by something. That’s not something you see every day and I liked the pink against the asphalt!

It was gorgeous out so I was sad to go home and resume working. But opening the window in the room where I work to let Scout enjoy the fresh air made the afternoon pass quickly. This picture was taken before the window was open but you get the idea.

He was a happy boy and I was thrilled for the fresh breeze and chatter of birds nearby.

My world has become very small and familiar. While this isn’t ideal, it is sort of fun to look more closely at your surroundings and seek out the details you might not ordinarily appreciate or even notice as close as your own home. Take a look around. You never know what you might find.

Push Hard

I am drawn to specific things – doors, old churches, vintage signs, weird architectural details, and informal signs.

This one made me laugh.

You’ll find it in downtown Douglas, Wyoming. You can read more about Douglas if you’re interested.

First there was the cool exhibit of Vintage trains.

Douglas looks like a modern Wild West town and I really liked it there.

And then there was the most unique church I’ve ever seen.

Not to mention the rainbow we saw after failing to climb the mountain.

And more about that trip.

Half the fun of traveling is reminiscing about the place we’ve been!

Perspective In Photography and Life

Lake Alma better

The sun finally found its way to my corner of the world yesterday. Since there’s more rain in the forecast, I jumped at the opportunity to go for a walk at a local state park. It was early and cold. A handful of cars drove through and I encountered just a few like minded people looking for a stretch of the legs and some fresh air. We very politely smiled as we veered away from one another.

It was a gorgeous day and the only noise came from an abundance of birds and a lone dog barking in the distance. With each step and each breath of fresh air I could feel my shoulders relaxing and breathing become calmer. I hold my breath a lot, especially when stressed, so it was refreshing to feel pure morning air fill my lungs.

The above picture was taken from one angle at the park. The picture isn’t great but notice how blue the sky is?

This next one was made just a quarter mile away and facing a different direction. The light is harsh and the colors not nearly so nice.

Lake alma bad 3-20

It was the same park and same day – just a different perspective. This is your friendly Monday morning reminder that your perspective can make or ruin your picture as well as your day.

Yesterday afternoon, our Governor announced fresh orders from the Ohio Department of Health that are meant to keep people at home. Some states are calling it “shelter in place” while our state is calling it “stay at home.”

No one really wants to do this. In fact, it seems a little surreal.

College students sunning themselves on the beach can’t understand what the big deal is about because we all know that youth is invincible and they’re sure they won’t get sick and die. That’s their perspective.

Their grandparents likely have been staying home for a while and hoping they haven’t already been exposed to the virus or anything else that would make them susceptible to illness at this time. That’s their perspective.

Some middle aged strangers I overheard commiserating at the grocery store are upset that the government would dare take away their freedom to eat in a restaurant just because a few hundred people are sick. That’s their perspective.

Now here is mine.

This is a new virus that our bodies are not prepared to combat. It travels quietly and quickly. And while it’s most dangerous to people with other conditions and to people of a certain age, it will not discriminate if it finds its way to you. It does not care if you are talented and famous, rich or poor, a good person or not.

We all are at risk of either getting sick or carrying germs to people we care about.

I will be the first person to tell you that I’m tired and want my life to go back to normal. I want to sit in a theater and watch a movie, listen to live music in a crowded place, and hop in a car to visit a museum or bookstore. I want a haircut.

But it isn’t worth the risk.¬†

Sometimes¬† I wonder if the naysayers were given a card with the name of someone they care about and told that if they don’t take this seriously, their person could die or at least be very sick and carry with them lifelong damage to their bodies. Would that matter to the kids on the beach or the complainers in the store?

It’s not forever, friends. It’s for a while. Just keep telling yourself that and we’ll get through this.

And speaking of getting through, when you do venture out to a store or to your bank or to pick up your lunch, try to be a little extra nice to those people who have no choice but to be out there working. We rely on healthcare workers, the farmers and factory workers who make sure we’re all fed, the truckers moving stuff around, as well as the cashiers and stock people who are pushing merchandise through their stores. These are all people who cannot join the work from home brigade because their jobs don’t allow it.

At the very least, show them a little extra patience and remember that some heroes don’t wear capes. They wear scrubs, work boots, and name tags. If you see a trucker somewhere, ask if they’re hungry and offer to get them food. Those big rigs don’t fit through a drive-thru lane and most fast foods places don’t take walk-ups. We need them to be fed and well to keep things moving.

Wherever you are, stay safe and well, my friends. It’s just for a while.

 

 

Cancelled Plans and Quarantines

Anyone who has been reading here for a while might remember the Winter Survival Guide I wrote last fall. Well, it sadly, now contains much relevant advice for anyone who isn’t accustomed to staying at home for long periods of time.

Thanks to COVID – 19, lots more people know how to spell the word apocalypse and have such an enormous supply of toilet paper they won’t need to stock up for a few years. Many parents have learned that their kids aren’t such great students after all and that staying home from work isn’t so fun when you have nowhere to go.

The year just isn’t working out as planned.

There were a number of adventures on my calendar beginning this week so I have been working hard to coax myself out of the mindset that I’ll soon be out running around and exploring the world.

Friends, it has been a real challenge.

At this point, I go to the office and back home. Even my hair appointment got cancelled! I think I speak for ladies everywhere when I say that I’m not prepared to meet the four horsemen of the apocalypse with my roots showing but have no choice thanks to common sense and an order from the governor.

While work has kept me busy, home has made me lethargic. But I’m not the type to just sit around. Instead, I’m typically up and moving, busy with chores and trying to make the most of the little time I have each evening.

This has been a struggle as well

I have started a list of things to do/clean/read/organize/ research for a few weeks. Maybe when this all over, my house will be in order and all those little projects wrapped up.

Meanwhile, Scout is thrilled to have me home so at least someone is happy!

Stay safe, friends. Follow direction from the CDC and remember the quicker we all distance and quarantine ourselves, the quicker this will all be done and life can settle into a new normal.

There are better days ahead.

Street Art

There’s an amazing alley in Rapid City, South Dakota where graffiti artists can legally leave their mark.

It’s a brilliant method to tamping down on graffiti around the city and one of those most surreal places I’ve seen.

There were several pieces that caught my eye. Here’s just one.

Incidentally, I don’t recall reading about this in any brochures. We found it because we parked the car and walked around. When you visit a new place, get out and explore. You never know what you’ll find!