Tag Archive | Pearl Jam

Just breathe

Just breathe is good advice, and appropriate, considering my overnight flight back from SeaTac this week. Sometimes you need to slow down and get some perspective.

(Surely you know and get the connection, but in case you don’t, Pearl Jam is from Seattle. And Just Breathe is a Pearl Jam song, if you didn’t click the link.)

One bit of perspective I got was that, barring overseas flights when it can’t be helped, I’m too old for overnighters. Especially when they’re an hour late because you’re waiting on flight attendants (I’m talking to you, United) in a small terminal packed with unhappy travelers whose flights have been delayed or cancelled due to strange weather all over the country.

And when you have to semi-run in your Birkenstocks (ouch, blistered toe!) to catch your hop home from Houston at 7 a.m. The fun part was that I got to semi-run with Dero Sanford, my neighbor from down the street. Crazy. We even ended up on the same row on the flight from Seattle.

Enough about that. The real “just breathe” advice of this column is of a different vein. People you love get sick, get old, fade away both physically and mentally. At least you’ve got them, or at least you had them.

When fighting it does no good, stop. Do what you can to make things better but accept that you can’t work magic.

Revelation: We can do a heck of a lot, but we can’t work miracles. We can’t stop time. We can only breathe and take what we’ve got right now.

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What we had last week was family time – and, for Kitty and me, some serious fun. Part of my duty – somebody’s got to do it – was play with her while she took a caretaking break and John spent time with his mother.

John’s still there and enjoying every minute with Mom. He and Kitty face some unpleasantness, but they’re excellent children and will do things right.

Doris and John are seriously into their Red Velvet Berry cobbler, our July 4 festive dessert.

Kitty and I lunched, shopped, got pedicures (my nail polish is called “108 Degrees,”  which was a no-brainer choice considering the weather here lately) and saw “Magic Mike” with Nancy and Pam. I’ll have to see it again here with my friends.

Oh, darn. Good-looking, talented male strippers. Twice. Again, somebody’s got to do it.

We had a fab Fourth of July in Selah, which included Independence Day for Little Bunny, whom Kitty and Norm rescued from one of their cats, who was using the tiny thing as a bean bag.

Little Bunny, moments before liberation.

The Inabas are nothing if not nurturing, and Bunny thrived. He hung around us a couple of days after liberation, but now he’s hopping around happy and big enough to survive cats and other critters, we hope.

The week started out coldish, but by Sunday it was 102 in the Yakima Valley, and we had a storm that rivaled Dorothy’s, minus the tornado. Monday it was back to Seattle, via Chinook Pass, which still has a crazy amount of snow for July.

Chinook Pass, where I busted my ass – soft snow and Birkenstocks don’t mix, especially on a steep incline.

But enough words. I’ll let photos take over from here. Tomorrow, historic Ellensburg and a close(ish) encounter with Mount Rainier.

Kitty waits to see if LIttle Bunny will exit his cage. He debated it for a while.

He’s out!

Little Bunny tests his freedom. Soon he was frisking all over.

Kitty, Ron and Wayne at our July 4 festivities. Kitty is a master gardener, as you might be able to tell.

Norm is a master farmer – Inaba Farms is big league. Check out the purple cauliflower.

Great-niece Emma (who made me a very cool bracelet as a gift), yours truly, and niece Lisette get in some serious girl talk.

Funny how time slips away

Well, hello there – my, it’s been a long, long time

Today was a nice and coincidental day. Mother and Cathy and I headed way out west to YaYa’s for a mother/daughters birthday lunch (birthdays seem to extend into weeks when you’re older). Definitely worth the drive. Food, wine and service were great, and complimentary baba ghanoush will win me over anytime.

Just before we left, the manager, a nice-looking young man, came over to our table. He’d been by earlier to ask how our meal was.

This time, he looked at me quizzically, bent down, and asked me if I used to teach. I said yes, and he said, “I knew it! You were my teacher.”

Turns out he was one of my sophomore English students the second year I taught, way back in 1986-87 at Jacksonville High School.

He said he’d been telling his coworkers he knew it was me but it couldn’t be because that was so long ago I’d have to be old now, and I looked (to him) “exactly the same.” Nice to hear, but I assured him that I am old, having just turned 56 this week.

His eyes got big and he said, “Oh, my gosh, you weren’t that much older than us – a bunch of us from my graduating class have been on Facebook talking about how weird it is that we’re all turning 40.”

Big dose of perspective – time is flying. I knew the seniors from my first year were turning 43, but the sophomores were still kids in my mind. (And it also makes me wonder how old they thought I was then. I was 31, which to 15- and 16-year-olds seems pretty indeterminable, I suppose.)

My personal children were precious and little back then (they’re precious and big now and have precious little ones of their own) and loved to go way out to the school with me  if I needed to hang out with yearbook or newspaper staff in the evenings or on weekends. Liz especially loved to write on the chalkboards (yes, chalk – these were the olden days).

Jay said our principal had been in recently too, but

he recognized Jay before Jay recognized him. Anyway, it was a nice visit that brought back some pleasant memories.

Siegfried Sassoon

Then we girls wandered through a couple of stores. At Coldwater Creek, while Mother was shopping, I picked up a very cool book called “The Little Big Book of Dogs” and opened it randomly to a poem called “Man and Dog,” by Siegfried Sassoon.

He just happened to be one of my favorite World War I poets, one I taught heavily to my senior English classes at Jacksonville High School all those years ago.

No biggie, but a nice coincidence. And a really great book for dog lovers. Would make a good Christmas present for someone who, say, has two German Shepherds or something.

Later I met John and our friends Julia and Rich at Breckenridge to see “Contagion.” Good movie, bad news. The $5 feature between 4 and 6 p.m. is no more. Makes you long for the good old days of last month.

Then I came home to a new “Rolling Stone” (Jon Stewart made the cover again) with articles about Pearl Jam’s 20-year-anniversary and the 20-year anniversary of Nirvana’s “Nevermind” – and that the Rolling Stones might, just might, tour next year to celebrate the band’s 50th(!) anniversary. How’d that happen??

Gee, ain’t it funny how time slips away?