Saturday, December 26, 2009

MY DEAR FRIEND, RENAISSANCE WOMAN

I have a most incredible friend. She is a Renaissance Woman. She has skills, abilities and knowledge about so many different things that it boggles my mind. She is or has been an ecologist, a conchologist, a wonderful nature photographer, a childrens book author, an exceptional organizer, a decorator, a crack legal assistant, a travel agent, generous with her talents, caring, principled, energetic, capable of inspiring others to perform at their highest level. Her outlook on life is to help others: older people, young people, animals of all kinds. She takes action when she sees something wrong and she does something about it to make it right.

And all the while she downplays her involvement. She's just doing what comes naturally to her and doesn't think she is extraordinary in any way. But she is and everyone she comes in contact with thinks so, too!

I not only have a deep respect for all that she does but a deep love for this woman whose heart is so big, the world is not large enough to hold it. That she regards me as a close, personal friend is an honor for me. She epitomizes all that is good in the world.

How many are blessed to have a friend like this? I am and I treasure her friendship beyond measure. Bless you, Marion. You are one of a kind.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

CHANUKAH CARD OR CHRISTMAS CARD

Christmas is not my holiday. I celebrate Chanukah or at least I acknowledge that it comes around this time of year. For years after our sons left home it just wasn't the same. We lit the candles but that was it. It is not a major holiday.

Over the years we've made numerous wonderful friends and acquaintances, all of whom know we are Jewish. But, every year, from several (not all), we've received Christmas cards, some with just a hint of winter sentiments but many with Christian religious overtones. I always scratched my head and wondered why people would send such cards to us. It never, not once, ever occurred to me to send Chanukah cards out to my Christian friends.

Our really good friends always sent appropriate cards but, in the last 5-6 years, the change has come to some of our more casual friends and acquaintances, you now, the ones you speak to or see only once a year. They actually go out and buy Chanukah cards for us. It's gratifying to know that the effort is made.

We still get Christmas cards from some but I attribute that to laziness. It must be quite a chore to pick out a box of Chanukah cards hidden among ALL the Christmas cards staring back from all the shelves in all the stores everywhere. But, at least we get acknowledged and their hearts are good. We get cards from people who care about us. And that's the point, isn't it?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

DRIVING................ME NUTS!

Drivers here in Arizona are a bunch of whiners, complaining about roads, speed cameras, other drivers and traffic. They have nothing to complain about if they haven't driven anywhere in New England.

Many hate the speed cameras and regard them as an invasion of privacy. The loudest blowhards are the ones who get ticketed. Well, gee, if you go 11 miles over the speed limit the flash of the camera will get you. Why are you going 11 MILES OVER THE LIMIT? One guy wore a monkey mask as he sped past the cameras.....26 times or more! He intentionally sped and wore the mask to hide his identity. Why? He was not just a scofflaw. He was endangering everyone else on the highway. The cameras are doing the job. People slow down or stay within the speed parameters. That makes all of us safer.

The roads here are wide, even on the local streets. There are left turn lanes everywhere so traffic is not impeded. There are stop & go lights at the entrances to the freeways so entering cars are spaced onto the freeway. People are courteous enough to let people change lanes without a hassle.

Even drive time traffic, as congested as it is, travels at a pretty good pace most of the time. Yet, people complain and complain. I say send them to any New England state and let them try to drive on Interstate 95 with the traffic congestion that generates, let them navigate morning and evening rush hour traffic on the 2 or 3 lanes highways that meander all over the place. Secondary roads are a nightmare in traffic. You can't speed because traffic is crawling at 5 miles an hour.

So, Arizonans, stop your bellyaching and bitching. You've got it good.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

I'M FLABBERGASTED

We went to pick up a registered envelope today at the post office. My husband had to sign for it. This is, of course, a very busy time of year for the post office and there was a line of people with packages. However, as soon as we walked in, a postal worker saw the card in his hand and asked if picking up the envelope was the only thing he had to do (besides mail a few letters.) The worker immediately took us to a side counter and he went to the back, got the envelope, my husband signed for it and the worker took our letters to place in the appropriate slots.

Why were we flabbergasted? This never would have happened at our old post office in Connecticut. There, they usually have two windows open until the line gets long, then they close one! They take their time doing anything and the attitude is not conducive to "service with a smile."

Nevertheless, the happy experience at the post office started the day off just fine. Funny how something so simple can create a nice aura which lasted the entire day!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

HE REALLY HAS IT

His speech was electric, erudite, well-thought out, compassionate..... all the things that make him the epitome of what the President of the United States should be. I cannot imagine anyone else in the position of POTUS, not one other person in this country who is up to the tasks he faces, not one.

He came into this office having to clean up after the worst 8 years of a failed presidency. Those of us who wanted him to come in like gangbusters don't really know what he's up against. We have no first hand knowledge. Those screaming for fast solutions need to step back and let him do his job without all the sidewalk superintendents sticking their collective noses into business they know nothing about.

Let the wingnuts and whack jobs scream their uninformed, unintelligent diatribes. People of substance and intellect don't listen to them.