Sunday, January 22, 2017

Recharging and Recovering and Reflecting

Just a quick note to say that my visit to our old stomping ground was so satisfying, if exhausting.  Our afternoon ferry got us to the island with enough time to check in, unpack, and take a very quick nap before I met a friend for dinner.  Four hours of the best kind of catch-up talk, those segues from one topic to another that only make sense if you've ever experienced them. From the superficial to the philosophical, from neighbourhood scandals to global fears, from last fall's travel's to an exciting 10-year house-building plan. We covered it all, and then some, and I came back to Pater in the hotel room recharged and, well, reassured, I guess, by the reflection that I'd got back from the mirror my friend help up to me. Families love us (if we're lucky!), but the mirror they hold up doesn't always reflect us back to ourselves as friends do. And, to be fair, we might not show the same side of our face to family as we do to friends.

That's something I'll be thinking more about over the next while, and I'm going to write more here about it soon -- and ask your thoughts on the matter as well -- but right now I'm needing some recovery time from a series of longer, busier days than my waning cold was willing to tolerate. It might just be the hours of talking with friends (three hours with another friend over breakfast the next day, an hour over afternoon coffee, and then another four hours over dinner with friends!), but the sore throat is back.

And next week promises to be a busy one as well: coffee with a friend from way back whom I haven't seen in several years; a possible breakfast with a former neighbour, in the city for a conference; a visit with a new physio, an important ally in my determination to regain fitness; and a French lesson. Plus that "determination to regain fitness" means prioritising a daily walk, at the very least, and also, I hope, fitting in at least one yoga class...

As well, of course, my week's To-Do list includes blogging. I'm going to post an update on our Nesting Progress now that we've sorted a few key pieces and have one room looking much closer to what we'd hoped for.  I might include some thoughts about adapting to condo living. We'll see. . . .

But gently, and slowly, and paying attention to the "sore-throat meter."

Finally, although my sore-throat warning kept me home yesterday, I must say, "Wasn't that Marvellous?!" To see those numbers of women and their allies marching in solidarity was so uplifting, so hope-inspiring. Check out my Instagram account to see my own favourite marchers, but there are so many splendid images from the day. Perhaps you have a favourite yourself. I know some of you were at some of those marches -- Brava!

Have to go now -- the 4-year-old granddaughter wants to come over to tell Nana and Granddad all about yesterday's marching. But I'll be back later to read any comments you have time to leave. What are you up to this Sunday? What plans for the week ahead? What will you be recovering from or looking forward to? How are you Recharging?

33 comments:

  1. People laugh sometimes when a retired person says she's overdoing it, but it's true, we can overfill our days, and need to take time to recover when ill. (I notice, I can no longer push through a severe cold etc.) Seeing all those friends, heavenly!
    I was heartened by the march; notice as served. Now, let's see what happens.

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    1. It was heavenly, even if tiring. It was exceptional, the condensed visiting, and well worth the one-time fatigue, but I'll slow down a bit now.
      And yes, waiting to see, hoping that we can all maintain the high ideals and the energy to keep defending them.

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  2. I am so heartened by the sight of the crowds of people, largely women, gathering world wide to advocate for ourselves and for others. It is always the right time to stand up against bigotry, hatred, and intolerance.

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  3. The free time of a retiree can be filled up far too much and then we crash...I know it sounds odd to over schedule but I have been there too...and it is that feeling that comes with too much that helps us regulate the finer balance.
    I was up late last night babysitting the grandchildren and am in need of a slow mo day so my walk today will be more of a saunter and I plan to rest and recharge and bring back those warm feelings of a sweet baby's head resting on my shoulder snoozing...
    Hope your throat eases soon...

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    1. Sauntering is good. . . and one of the best ways to recharge is recalling that sensation of a baby sleeping on your shoulder. Take care.

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  4. It is cold and foggy and feels like snow on the way. I spent most of yesterday sitting on a floor and sorting through piles of photos and today went for a long, cold and muddy walk with an ordnance survey map, Mr Green, and a hopeful heart, seeking out the route of a Roman road. Time to light candles and have a big, hot cup of coffee. I am literally never bored these days.

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    1. Your post about that was great, Annie -- it's a task I've got on my list here, that sorting of old photos, and it sounds as if your weather is perfect for it.
      Candles and coffee -- sounds good. Stay warm!

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  5. Having just returned from a challenging vacation where all sorts of things went wrong and those we paid to help us out (insurance) turned out to be adversarial in many ways, I was too jet lagged to participate in yesterday's march. But exhausted as I still am, I feel a profound gratification in seeing so many people worldwide standing up for decency and human rights. So I'm doing okay, and working on stiffening my spine and resolve to keep working, keep working, keep working - not so much in my professional pursuits as in my citizenship.

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    1. Oh no Marsha -- that sounds terrible, and I hope you can sort out the insurance eventually and perhaps recover a few good memories from your holiday.
      We all need to stiffen our spines and work on our citizenship, well said. It's been easy enough to take it for granted, but perhaps these times might have the benefit of encouraging us to take more active roles...

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  6. I have many friends who "overschedule" in retirement. Personally, I resent too many obligations however pleasant they may be. I require a lot of discretionary time. The marches show that people will not accept disrespect towards women or visible minorities. It's good that the little ones learn to take a stand. I hope your cough does not come back.

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    1. The cough seems to be staying just outside the door for now, which is good enough.... and yes, like you, I do need considerable time to myself, preferably on a daily basis (I have a very tough time if I don't get a solo hour, minimum, in the afternoon)

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  7. My husband and I took part in the march in Ottawa and it was very inspiring and uplifting. Then I saw the first press conference .... Oh well, all the more reason to keep pushing back!

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    1. Good for you, Patricia, and how good it must have felt to have your husband want to accompany you as a feminist (I'll assume) man.
      And yes, that press conference makes a strong argument for continued resistance.

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  8. I was so excited about my 'brand-new' retired life and booked myself solid doing french, dancing, dressmaking, bookclub and a huge volunteer commitment for a year. It was too much and I barely had time for my family! I was so disappointed in my low energy levels, then I realised, hey I don't have to do it all at once!

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    1. Ha! I can see how easily that could happen -- between family and work, I had stripped away so many of my interests that there was a pent-up urgency to "sign up"! I was restrained by the decision to sell our house, but now that we're finished the move, and settling in, I'll use you as a cautionary tale (:-) to remind me I "don't have to do it all at once." -- Do you feel you're getting a balance now? How many months/years in?

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  9. Members of my family marched yesterday in New York City, Washington, D.C., Minneapolis, Oakland, Portland and Seattle, standing up for, as Marsha so beautifully put it here, decency and human rights. Thank you to everyone who joined them around the U.S. and the world. Keep up your energy and resolve, for there will be much more to do!

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    1. Sounds as if you have an enlightened and committed family, Leslie. And yes, there will be much more to do. That was just a (wonderful!) start.

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  10. I hope your sore throat is due to overuse (if so, how nice to have an excess of good conversation from time to time).

    I agree with Madame L-b, discretionary time is high on the priority list. I planned a 'Year of Nothing' post retirement. (Nothing being scheduled, recurring commitments. Did not include social.) I lasted eleven months but broke early for the fall session of French lessons. :)

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    1. I think the sore throat was a bit of both. There was definitely a return of a few cold symptoms, but I think the rest I threw at it is having an effect.
      I think the idea of the "Year of Nothing" is very wise. My own version of it, which I'm considering now, is a "Year of Not Adding Too Much" after the "Year of Moving Twice." I should have a "Year of Nothing" at some point -- learning to live without too much structure or would probably be good for me.

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  11. I really look forward to your thoughts on adjustment from single family home to condo. This is a move my husband and I are considering now, and we're both feeling some apprehension. I so love your blog. Hope you're feeling better soon! Cheers, Linda

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    1. It's definitely a big move, Linda, but overall I think it's good for us, and I'll try to say more about why very soon. Thanks.

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  12. Glad you enjoyed your weekend. While we all have our own agendas and opinions I think the marches against Trump were more than "feminist" and to view them as such is somewhat simplistic. Mary

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    1. Ouch! But I'm pleased to see someone using the word "simplistic" correctly. So often these days it's used as if synonymous with "simple," losing all its pejorative edge.
      I know you're right and the march caught up many more motivations than "feminist," but to be fair to me and to others who thought of it as such, it was called a "Women's March" and it was female biology referred to by those ubiquitous pink hats. Certainly, though, the resistance to much of the current presidential agenda needs to be more "intersectional" than some understandings of feminism might indicate. Thanks.

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    2. and I went back and read what I wrote about the march, only to see I never did call it "feminist." Huh.

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    3. Thanks for always replying. I love that you do that and you do always invite comments from those who agree or disagree! I suppose my concern is that there are so many more dangerous and alarming aspects to Trump that overly emphasising his unquestionably appalling attitude to women may detract from these. Wasn't that you had called it a feminist march which you hadn't but I think you got my drift. Just read your new post and love the photos. Your rooftop space is really lovely. Mary

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    4. It's a valid concern, Mary, and I thank you for raising it here. Thanks for the kind comments as well.

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  13. I drank a lot of hot tea (Herba Tussin by Traditional Medicinals) and hot water with buckwheat honey (from Quebec!) when I had the virus.

    Oh, I really do envy you ladies in retirement. I announced to my husband Sunday night that next year I am dropping all my committees, freelance jobs, and volunteer days at school. I will go in, teach to the best of my ability, and go home. I am worn to the bone of the behaviors I see from all corners of the educational world. But I can't retire until I am of Social Security age. And with the new Secretary of Education choice from our new administration, I don't see any of it improving in any way, shape, or form.

    As a Boomer, I can well remember the effect of the marches of the '60s and '70s. They (I was in middle/high school then) really changed the country's social and political fabric. Then as the the young adults of that era entered the workforce and family life, protesting died down and my age group did nothing to continue the momentum of change. I was impressed with young people when the "We Are the 99 Percent" movement started up several years ago, but due to circumstances beyond their control, it didn't catch on. Now, I think there is a seismic shift in people's activism and I think millenial's use of social media will make a great impact on this shift. I know that my own children, who were pretty politically savvy to begin with, are even more driven to contribute to change.

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    1. I understand your envy and I sympathise with your current stressful situation, especially since I know that teachers like yourself continue to try your best, despite an exhaustion that becomes pervasive and nearly crippling.
      I do think there is a promising shift taking place now, and I'm guardedly optimistic that it will make enough of a difference. Good for you for raising kids who are working for that change.

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  14. I'm late for the party....
    Marsha said it beautifully"....so many people worldwide standing up for decency and human rights..". It is just beginning...
    Dottoressa

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    1. yes, and we need to keep that momentum going forward...

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  15. I'm rather late to the party as well and agree with Dottoressa that Marsha put it so well ...lovely to see the pictures of your family marching.
    Sorry that you're still feeling a little unwell ...I love that Paul suggested you stay in bed and brought you a drink! Sometimes, afternoons like that are just what the body needs, as well as the spirit! Perfect to have a view from your window too. Depending on the angle I sit at, sometimes I just see trees rather than buildings ...an ok outlook and one I'm happy with :) as I can always loose myself in my imagination, seeing many beautiful views whenever I choose ...
    Take care of yourself Frances ....as always, I'm enjoying your posts and it's good to read about how you're "settling" into your new home and neighbourhood ...life sounds good! ...well, great actually!
    Rosie

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  16. So easy to overdo, and so much temptation and fun as well. I find I no longer recover as well as when I was younger. No that is not true, I actually do a wider variety of things, which may prove to be more taxing, in a different way, than working was. Add that to older bodies and the truth that I am no longer 20 is terribly evident.

    I have come to accept that I am, to some extent a "more" person, while at the same time being a fairly reclusive and "private" person. It is the tensions and the contradictions that make us human, and the lifelong search for that elusive thing called balance. The ongoing cotton-brain and throat-tickle serve to remind me of limitations, though I'd just as soon be rid of them.

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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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