One More Day / Un Día Más

La versión español está después de la versión inglés.

OK, THE TITLE should really be “Two Months More,” but no one wrote that song. Monday afternoon, I was back at the orthodontist for my monthly appointment. I got my first set of Invisalign braces in October 2016. I was told the entire course would last between 18 and 20 months. Now, 39 months later, I’ve been told I have just two months to go. I guess that was 18 to 20, more or less.

At least I no longer have the sets of plastic braces to remove every time I want to eat or drink something. When the orthodontist attached this one final wire to six of my bottom teeth two months ago, she told me I would have it for two or three months, which I figured meant six. I don’t like her math(s) skills but I finally understand. Besides, I love how my teeth look. Also, the price was fixed. So I haven’t paid a single centimo in 19 months.

San Geraldo usually drives me over and I walk home. It’s only about 3.5 km (2+ miles), but the entire staff was very concerned this time because I didn’t have a hat, hood, or gloves for protection and it was extremely cold outside. I assured them I’d be OK and would even stop and buy a hat if I found the weather too harsh. I toughed it out, though, and arrived home without frostbite — in the 15C (59F) chill. Oddly, my ears were cold by the time I got home.

Tuesday morning I woke with the crag martins to another dramatic winter sunrise on the Alboran Sea, our part of the Mediterranean Sea. One more dawn.

Go ahead. Click the images and watch the sunrise with me.

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OK, EL TÍTULO realmente debería ser “Dos Meses Más”, pero nadie escribió esa canción. El lunes por la tarde, volví al ortodoncista para mi cita mensual. Obtuve mi primer frenillos Invisalign en octubre 2016. Me dijeron que todo el curso duraría entre 18 y 20 meses. Ahora, 39 meses después, me han dicho que me quedan solo dos meses. Supongo que fue de 18 a 20, más o menos.

Al menos ya no tengo los juegos de aparatos de plástico para quitar cada vez que quiero comer o beber algo. Cuando el ortodoncista conectó este último cable a seis de mis dientes inferiores hace dos meses, me dijo que lo tendría durante dos o tres meses, lo que supuse que significaba seis. No me gustan sus habilidades matemáticas, pero finalmente lo entiendo. Además, me encanta cómo se ven mis dientes. Además, el precio fue fijo. Así que no he pagado ni un solo céntimo en 19 meses.

San Geraldo generalmente me conduce y, después, yo camino a casa. Son solo unos 3,5 km (2+ millas), pero esta vez todo el personal estaba muy preocupado porque no tenía sombrero, capucha, o guantes para protegerme y hacía mucho frío afuera. Les aseguré que estaría bien e incluso me detendría y compraría un sombrero si el clima fuera demasiado duro. Sin embargo, lo saqué y llegué a casa sin congelación, en el frío de 15C (59F). Curiosamente, mis oídos estaban fríos cuando llegué a casa.

El martes por la mañana me desperté con los roqueros con otro dramático amanecer invernal en el Mar de Alborán, nuestro parte del Mar Mediterráneo. Un amanecer más.

Adelante. Haz clic en las imágenes y mira el amanecer conmigo.

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Say, Watermelon!

My sister Dale used to say “Watermelon!!!” instead of “Cheese!!!” when she smiled for a photo. It would result in a big, still cheesy, smile.

WATERMELON!!!

As for San Geraldo, this is his idea of lunch. A bit of egg salad and a little slice of watermelon.

NO CHEESE.

In The Heart Of Things

The day my sister Dale died in 1981, I was surprised to find myself momentarily alone in her living room. I picked up a book of poetry. As I placed the book in my lap, it flipped open and the first words I read were:

We who are left, how shall we look again
Happily on the sun, or feel the rain,
Without remembering how they who went
Ungrudgingly, and spent
Their all for us, loved, too, the sun and rain?

A bird among the rain-wet lilac sings—
But we, how shall we turn to little things
And listen to the birds and winds and streams
Made holy by their dreams,
Nor feel the heart-break in the heart of things?

New to me at the time, it was a poem written at the end of World War I by William Lyon Phelps. It gave me gooseflesh and has remained with me ever since.

Wishing those others who are left, in so many places around the world, the chance to someday not feel the hearbreak in the heart of things.

I have no rain-wet lilacs. But I have heard birds singing among San Geraldo’s sun-drenched hibiscuses. So, I’ll share those and finish with a smile from a sweetly dreaming Dudo (he of the toothy grin).

There’s A Hole In The Sky

As most of you know, I live with clinical depression. I do what I can to keep the dark days — and nights — at bay. Medication helps, but needs to be adjusted over time. Without medication, I couldn’t survive. And sometimes I feel like I have to justify that to others.

“Oh, just change your attitude,” they’ll say.

“I just pull myself by my bootstraps and put a smile on my face,” some tell me.

“Just spend more time at the gym.”

Sorry, it doesn’t work that way. Attitude helps. A smile helps. Exercise helps. But they don’t cure clinical depression.

With the help of San Geraldo, I manage to keep the worst bouts from returning, simply by being aware and getting help when I/we see the patterns returning. What returns are the voices in my head. They tell me I’m not good enough (for what, I don’t know). I’m not handsome enough (for my life as a fashion model?), I’m not smart enough, kind enough, rich enough, confident enough, talented enough, humble enough.

On my good days, none of that even matters.

On my bad days, I’m simply not enough.

Lately, I’m not finding myself interesting enough, which explains my recent dearth of blog posts.

But, finally, rather than trying vainly to be enough for you (OK, for myself), I figured it was time to just tell you what’s been going on in my head.

The walks have helped. Usually about 11 km (8 miles) in 2-1/2 to 3 hours, with a day off between. Monday, it’s back to the gym. Really. No excuses.

This is what I saw on the walk home Friday…

And I wanna fly, too…