As a frequent passenger in my husband’s airplane, I can tell you with certainty (at least to my way of thinking) that an airplane works best when the spinner or nose on the propeller minds its own business—not dipping hither and yon out of curiosity. It’s enough to make a person sick.
Big or small, we don’t like it when other people dip their nose into our business. Similarly, other people don’t like it when we dip our nose into their business.
While attending a writing retreat in Joshua Tree, California, we took a field trip to enjoy a sound bath at “Integraton” — an unforgettable experience. In addition to a gift shop, multiple hammocks set up for guest naps, and hand-blown glass artwork hanging from the trees, they had other things to capture one’s attention.
In “The Wizard of Oz,” Dorothy Gale’s house is carried by a cyclone from Kansas, over the rainbow, to the magical land of Oz, where it lands on and kills the Wicked Witch of the East who’s wearing Dorothy’s ruby red slippers.
Not a sight you see every day, this was double-take worthy!
According to the dictionary, the definition of a workaround is:
“A method for overcoming a problem or limitation in a program or system.”
We got to see a workaround in action when we attended the 2019 Garden Valley Fly-In and went into town for breakfast one morning.
In your mind’s eye, picture a turn of the century western town where a wooden sidewalk connects all of the shops on Main Street.
Alas, the place where the sidewalk needed to go had a tree in the way. They felled the tree, leaving the stump, and built the sidewalk around it. Maybe not a “classic” workaround, but a workaround nonetheless.
When I visited the Self-Realization Fellowship (SRF) temple and gardens in Cardiff by the Sea, CA, I appreciated the fence—boundary—installed between the gardens and the cliff.
Due to erosion, it’s imperative to keep visitors from stepping too far forward, which many people want to do because of the stunning photo opportunity.
When it comes to human beings, there are many types of boundaries: personal, professional, relational, social, ethical, etc.
Boundaries are internal and external lines that we draw. They delineate where our — physical, mental, emotional, spiritual — space ends, and where another’s may begin. Boundaries establish what’s okay and what’s not okay. They help us:
Stand up for ourselves
Keep us from doing things we shouldn’t
Protect and take care of ourselves
Boundaries are not separation, they’re not division. Boundaries are respect for ourselves and others.
As I tell my clients, establishing boundaries is one thing, but it’s not enough. To be effective, they must also be maintained.
So while we live in a “baby-gated community,” it’s not to keep others out, it’s to keep our big dog, Willa, from wandering freely as she’s inclined to do at this time of year. And to keep Luna, our granddaughter, from joining her.
I’m about sharing our similarities and celebrating our differences.
I’m about crossing cultural, language, social, and economic barriers to build community cohesion, understanding, acceptance, and peace.
We have a massive jar in the corner of our living room that I put a dollar a day into it. And each time Luna’s parents pick her up from us watching her, they drop paper money into it. At the end of each month, we deposit the money into a college fund account for our granddaughter.
You’d be amazed at how fast it adds up. Let me give you an example:
The entire year before we walked across Scotland as a family, we kept a huge jar by the front door. At the end of each day when we all got home from school or work, we’d empty our pockets and purse of all change—not paper money, just coins.
At the end of the year, we converted the change into paper money. It paid for all of our meals (3 people) for the entire time we were gone (21 days).
“Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” —Robert Collier
Last week I, along with several other writers, took a tour of the Idaho State Police Crime Lab. Our tour guide, Rylene Nowlin, is a DNA specialist.
During the tour, I saw and learned so many interesting things. From the processing of rape kits to cyanoacrylate (super glue) fuming to develop latent fingerprints, and everything in-between.
For obvious reasons, we weren’t allowed to take photographs inside the crime lab. Here’s a shot of the outside of the building.
Rylene shared stories that made us laugh (some people are clearly out to eliminate themselves from the gene pool), and stories that curled our hair (how can people be so cruel?).
Did you know that a coroner is an elected official who doesn’t have to have a medical degree? In fact, they don’t have to have any type of degree. None whatsoever. They just have to be able to get elected. There are places where the local feed store operator is a coroner.
On the other hand, a medical examiner by definition is a licensed physician, and in most cases, they’re trained to be forensic pathologists. They’re appointed to the position.
Some states have both coroners (usually in the rural areas) and medical examiners (usually in the non-rural areas).
I adore my writing studio at home. It’s bright, sunny, and there are lots of beautiful trees, flowers, and shrubs to look at through the five large windows that comprise two of the walls.
But on those occasions when you need to get away, you don’t want to be found, sidled up to, interrupted, or chatted with…
I’ve found a spot that’s even better than the public library (you might be recognized there). Go to the law library at your local college or university. In Boise, we have the College of Law—University of Idaho.
Everyone in the study area of a law library is working against deadlines. They’re much too busy even to look up. You can hear a pin drop. It’s a writer’s paradise!
If you enjoy a bit of background noise, merely pop your earbuds in and listen to your favorite writing music. Several years ago I posted a playlist for writers. It’s called The Key of Sea and can be found by following this link: https://tinyurl.com/y6w7kenr.
“A library outranks any other one thing a community can do to benefit its people. It is a never failing spring in the desert.” —Andrew Carnegie