Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Word-less Wednesday. . .dans le jardin . . .

Feeling a little low this morning, partly last night's election results, partly an anticipatory homesickness (I know, isn't that weird? But I get bouts of it before every extended trip and wish we were just staying home), partly the letdown of seeing Comments in my emailbox and then finding that each one is spam written in the kind of English I try to discourage my students from writing. And perhaps some of the low is thinking about the Very. Big. Number. I will take on this Friday. A Very. Big. Birthday. Number. We'll talk about that later. Or not.

Meanwhile, having given you more than enough words on my French past and future, I will keep the rest of today's post as Word-Less as possible . . . Instead, here is some quiet and soothing greenery from a huge fern that remembers the ancient forest for us, right in the middle of our garden. Who knows how long its grown in this spot, keeping its secrets. . .  I love its evocative spring unfurlings, uncurlings. . . . .

Feel free to leave me cheering remarks in the comments section. Although, seriously, I'm already lightening up a little. After all, I have my suitcase pretty much packed, and a day at the spa with two beautiful daughters planned. They're both taking their day off work to make sure I begin the next day in style. . . 

29 comments:

  1. Sounds like separation anxiety. Like childhood worries, resurfacing. All will be well. Have a wonderful time.

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    1. Yes, it's definitely a passing phenomenon, one I'm used to be now. Thanks for the good wishes!

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  2. I came across your blog after my mom shared it with me...

    And I know what you mean about last night's election. I woke up this morning feeling like it was a bad dream!

    M.

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    1. Thanks so much for reading and for commenting -- I love to hear about mom-daughter sharing! And ugh, four more years of this bad dream. . . just hope the nasty tone of the campaign will shift for at least some semblance of working together. . .

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  3. I feel like I am years behind Canadian news. Did Justin Trudeau ever win whichever election he was involved with?

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    1. I think F is referring to the BC provincial election that happened yesterday... Justin Trudeau is leader of the federal Liberal Party as of last month.

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    2. Yes, we had a stunning result in our provincial election, and I suppose it must have pleased some people. Just not me or mine . . .

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  4. Mater...this too shall pass.
    It sounds like you feel rather overwhelmed about this birthday.
    I hope that your spa day soothes and restores what ails you.

    Oh that election...I was gobsmacked by the results.

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    1. I think most of us were very surprised, yes!
      I'm sure the spa day will be a great treat, and after all, being 60 is better than the alternative!

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  5. That number really isn't so bad if you are healthy and happy. My life has been wonderful in the last year and a half. Even the time with Dad's illness was a special opportunity to get to know him better. I am in Budapest and just can't imagine a Liberal majority at home. I am feeling sad that I am leaving Europe because I love the culture and history so much! The writer of your unfriendly comments is probably a person who resents the happiness of others.

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    1. You're at the other end of the journey, getting ready to come back home, leaving behind a wonderful culture you've saturated yourself in for weeks and weeks. Of course, you will bring much of that home with you and will probably spend many more weeks thinking through new ways to keep it in your life until next visit. . . You demonstrate well the richness of life at this end of the calendar!

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  6. Don't you think the very big birthdays are that much more fun? (43 doesn't have the best ring to it. And, hilariously, I have a (non emergency) cardiology appointment scheduled, just to make it more exciting...) Everyone pulls out the good gifts and the fine restaurants when the year ends with 0! And, you're only getting smarter every day.

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    1. It's true I'll be well treated on this birthday -- I'm so thrilled that my two daughters (my son and my other daughter are still in Europe) are actually taking the day off work to spoil me!

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  7. If its any consolation I always feel exactly like that before our long haul holidays. However, once on the plane and settled down the fun takes over and the holiday begins. I passed the same age marker by taking off with my significant other to take up a two year contract in Singapore quite out of the blue. No worries. It's not only fine it's great...

    Enjoy your holiday...and thank you for blogging about so many topics that resonate here in a rural corner of England.

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    1. Yes, that's what I'm like, almost every big trip, and then once I'm on the plane, I'm good to go. . .
      That's a dramatic move you made at 60 -- thanks for the proof that we don't have to just fade away. . . and thanks for being kind enough to say my blogging resonates a bit, way over there. . . ;-)

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  8. Such deep greens.

    Love K.Line's comment. - celebrating those big numbers is a cause to pull out all the stops. 57 doesn't have much of a ring to it either. Packing for Paris would be a great antidote for pulling out of a blue funk.

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    1. I had thought I'd probably celebrate with a big party, but so much has been going on here the last few months, I wasn't ready to do that. Paris will be a great antidote, as you say.

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  9. I detest replying by anonymous but I don't know how to reply any other way...sorry. I LOVE reading your blog! I, too, find the planning/anticipation of a great trip so rewarding and exciting only to find the final (very busy and stressful) days before departure making me feel like I almost would rather stay home. But, once on that plane, I'm ready for another adventure! I am 62 and I can definitely assure you that this birthday will be wonderful and I have a feeling that this generation will find you feeling more free, more relaxed and embracing every day in a slightly different way. A great husband, wonderful kids, and delightful grandkids become even more valuable than ever before. ENJOY! Can't wait to hear all about it! Deb

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    1. No worries about the anonymous posting, especially when you leave your name so that I can begin to know you a bit. I do see many things about the next few decades that I'm sure will be positive, although there's no denying that the number has an eschatological quality (i.e. is pointing more forcefully toward the end than other lower numbers. . . )

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  10. Oh no blogger ate my comment. Am fascinated by language. After intensive school study of French I have much understanding and no fluency. I am trying hard to learn welsh. What a revelation. It does not come from the same stable as anything else I know. Have a great trip. Are you sure you can't fit in a fleeting trip to Wales? Just a couple of days would do.

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    1. I'd love to learn a wee bit more about Welsh and its background. . . you'll have to tell me about it someday when we visit your charming holiday cottage. My commitment to Barcelona AND my girlfriend's painting course for this year's trip (besides our time in Bordeaux and Paris) means we can't afford any more jaunts off the itinerary, but one of these years, soon . . .

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  11. Mater, don't be downcast by the birthday. You are an absolute inspiration - you should be celebrating the fact that you lead an engaged, energetic, intellectual life with a wonderful family, and that there are many more things to do ahead!

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    1. Ah, you're very kind. And I do intend to celebrate that, absolutely. But see my comment to Anonymous/Deb above re the eschatological aspect . . . ;-)

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  12. Don't let that Big Number (I think probably the same one I passed a couple of years ago) get you down. It's only traumatic if you view it as an ending, and you're clearly far from being in that category. Have a wonderful birthday (I spent mine in Paris - where else??) and then get on with living a full, vibrant life, with lots of challenges and changes still to come. (Mind you, I hope I feel as upbeat when the next big milestone comes along, but sufficient to the day ... )
    Rosemary

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    1. Paris is a perfect city for celebrating a 60th, a city where older women are less likely to fade into invisibility. . .

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  13. I hope you don't mind if I share a little advice from GrammyRubi, who's two months out from her first three-digit birthday. When I, or my mom, or anyone else complains about getting older, Grammy points out, "It's better than the alternative, isn't it?" (This is always said sweetly and a bit wryly.)

    Do have a fabulous trip -- you're going to be in Barcelona, aren't you? Lots to like there, even if they do charge you for tapas!

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    1. Well GrammyRubi should know! I quoted that same quip somewhere in the Comments above, but it's got much more punch said by an almost-centagenerian!
      And we are going to be in Barcelona, yes! Last year's scoot across the border into San Sebastian was our first visit to Spain, and I'm looking forward to getting to know that country a little bit better. One of these years, we may even make it to Madrid and you and I can meet!

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  14. I feel that way too, suddenly think, "I don't want to go". But it's a temporary mood. As far as the big'0' birthday goes, some hit us harder than others. My only advice is to do exactly what you desire to mark the occasion. (At 50 I hid in the garden- but at 60 happily hosted a wonderful party.)

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    1. Only six weeks from my mom's death, I find it a bit tougher to get celebratory. At the same time, I'm feeling a bit sorry for myself that I won't be having a big party. But I'm just thrilled that my daughters are teaming up to take me for a spa day, we'll have drinks together with Paul after, and then he's whisking me off to a restaurant we've been wanting to try, so it should be a wonderful day, if quieter than other Zero birthdays.
      And yes, that "I don't want to go" -- which mostly hits during patches of insomnia -- is always a temporary thing. Otherwise, I wouldn't keep heading off, right?

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I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we? I apologize, though, for the temporary necessity of the Word Verification -- spam comments have been tiresomely numerous lately, and I'm hoping to break that pattern.

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