Friday, September 10, 2010

A Random New Year

I can't remember when I've felt so dissociated from the calendar.  I know it's September because my kids have started school and have begun to share their joys and woes.  The mornings are cooler these last few days, and G'ma's skin no longer runs the risk of self-immolation in the sunshine between the pod-castle and the car.  Who knew that "thin skinned" meant more than emotionally vulnerable.... or is that where it came from?  Have I just deduced the etymology of the expression?  G'ma's increasingly thinning epidermis is very sensitive to the touch, and a thin skinned person is nothing if not "touchy".... I'm sure that I could find the answer in the blogosphere but, for now, I'm enjoying my own personal nonsense.  

That's part of my un-tethered-ness.  I know that there are answers to who is this fruitcake Floridian with a congregation of a few dozen similarly deluded souls? but I just don't invest the energy in the investigation..... and there's another interesting juxtaposition of words.

This post is turning into something else entirely, isn't it?  Friends and I took a John Ford/Howard Hawks Westerns class from Roger Ebert which became, as the semester went on, a symposium on John Wayne.  I wasn't looking for the words to become part of the story, but here they are, inserting themselves without any provocation at all.  Is this what novelists feel when their characters take over the plot?  Or is it just extreme stream of consciousness because I'm feeling a bit unhinged?  

The weatherman told me that the monsoon rains were finished for the year and it poured the very next afternoon.  My lantana were colorful and bursting with new blooms just ready to hatch and two days later they are still-born, dead on the vine, the plants an overgrown mass of foliage instead of an afro of purple blossoms.  The bag of worm castings (Oligochaeta poop) which I bought this morning at the Demonstration Gardens split as I dropped it on the garage floor; the dustpan I used hung on the wall going down to the cellar in G'ma and Daddooooo's house.  As I swept, I wondered if I owned any household gadget which would be in use 60 years from now.  My life felt very temporary at that moment.

Master Gardener Rules Which Must Be Obeyed may preclude me from doing what I want with my time there, and I've been examining the notion of my life without the program.  Is it true that every single organization is merely a reliving of junior high school?  This one thinks that one is blah blah blah blah and who brought the donuts, anyhow?  The personalities have become larger than the mission, and I just am not that interested.  But without it, I have one less anchor to my already bobbing-around-on-the-sea-of-life life.

Aged Parm and I had a wonderful lunch at the Ritz yesterday, courtesy of the Happy Ladies Club.  It's at the end of a saguaro studded 15 mile road trip that had us both smiling before the valet assured me that he could, in fact, drive a stick.  The meal was exquisitely presented and served and, as our President remarked, "We've all eaten our fair share of chicken and egg and tuna salads.... but never like this" and then we toured the kitchens and were treated to smoothies and cookies and a look at the biggest dishwasher we'd ever seen but through it all I was watching the crowd and realizing that I felt closer to Aged Parm, my friend of a month or so, than I did to all but one of those women I'd known for years.  When asked if I've made friends since arriving in Tucson 4 years ago, I've been saying that my bench isn't as deep as I wish it were.  The truth of that statement hit me in my heart that afternoon.

TBG and I have a friend from my first year in graduate school.  He was older (35 to my 21) and married and a father and a business owner and he'd chucked it all to go to school and learn to be a social worker.  He was born in the year 5700 in the Jewish calendar which makes him 71 years old this month.  His son, who was 7 when I taught him in the after-school program, is over 40. I don't feel any older, but I am.

I'm more experienced but I'm still the same.  It's quite unsettling, in a random, starting over but from where, kind of way.

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