Real Life Sucks

The shadows catch my eye.  Long stooped frame with  cane, smaller figure keeping step.

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Walk with me

His steps falter, hers are spry.  She must have been a pretty woman in her youth.

Pause at traffic lights.  His shadow falls over hers, covers it.  Now they are one.

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Rosalyne and me standing behind them

Symbolic.  

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Young love –  Viking lass and her beau! 
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Can it last?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In my perfect world –

Daughters: “What planet are you living on, Mom?” (Eye roll!)

Planet Naive?  

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He and me 

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Still grappling with a sense of let-down over the Brangelina breakup.  Can’t think why.

Real life sucks. (Borrowing Daughters’ phraseology.) 

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What happened to  till death do us part ?

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All by myself

Aunty Joyce and Uncle Rajan celebrated fifty years this past summer, Husband’s parents mark sixty next year.   

There has to be hope.

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The royal wave. (Rajan and Joyce, 50 years)  
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The In-Laws: Merlin the Magician and Vampire Girl ( Wimsy and Devi, coming on 60 years)
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Always hopeful Puppy.  The crumb will fall. .

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Change of subject.  A well placed seat on a porch/ in a garden corner, is a beckoning invitation.

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Gunther-and-Mary’s backyard
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Patriotic front porch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Slideshow – more leafy corners and slivers of heaven –

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An old chair in a green nook makes a marvelous stage for a potted plant. These dilapidated abandoned treasures found a home in my Eden –

Love how chairs add charm and character to a space (indoors or out).  Couldn’t love this one, though –

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See through pink plastic – yikes!

When I can’t sleep  I re-live  lovely moments.

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Like these –

  • Time spent with kindred spirits –                                                     
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Rosalyne and me at Word On The Street, downtown Toronto

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  • Rainbows in hosepipe mist and around the house –
  •  Puppy discovers playground –
  • Swathes of morning sunlight –
  •  Dreamin’ ‘n’ dancin’ to the crooning of Six Feet Up

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    Six Feet Up at Fairmount MacDonald.  Music from five decades ago for Golden Wedding Anniversary
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Six Feet Up.  Baby Boomers  – Kevin, Gail and Bruce.  Vocals and wind instruments.  Irresistible toe-tapping nostalgia
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Fifty years.  Rajan and Joyce.  “May I have this dance for the rest of my life?”
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That’s Husband and me!
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Just you and me
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Mine!

 

 

 

 

 

……………………………………………………………………………………………..

Saw this van parked on Next Door’s driveway. 

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Bringing dreams home.  A sign for things to come?

Yes, please!  

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Thankful for –

(1) Dental care and the fresh feel of just-cleaned teeth –

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Thank you, Suzanne Garfinkle, dental hygienist since Daughters were tots

(2) Good neighbours

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Glen and Dianne – court garage sale organizers
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Court BFFs. Sepideh (left), with Jinoos and young Sahand setting up shop in Jinoos’ driveway

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ever wondered about the faces behind the names defacing public property?

Romance, art or vandalism ?

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So who is Leyla?
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Who?

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

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Bottoms up! (Thank goodness those weeding days are done)

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………………………………………………………………………………………………..

 Memo to self for this week-

 Hold that tongue, watch what you say. 

    Easier said than done.

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Wise monkeys.  Tisha (left) and daughters

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Shh! In a neighbour’s garden
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I am?

Until next time,

sincerely

PS: Dad and Mum made it to fifty years too.

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Prins and Beatrice – RIP Mum.  Miss you still.

Sharing is great, please do.  Like this page and follow to receive future posts.

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The pictures are all moments captured on my phone and Ipad.

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Shopping with Mom
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Husband and Puppy.  A quiet ramble.
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So Long Brangelina

Brangelina’s done.  Announcement sets social media ablaze.

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How did the bubble burst?

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Why?

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No one knows
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All by myself

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shocked fans.   Shattered illusions. 

Brad-Pitt-‘N’-Angelina-Jolie …  poster kids  for You-Can-Have-It-All.

# Déjà vu   #What’s new?

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Did they?
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Hollywood’s Golden Couple

Six youngsters now face a new reality.  Sad.

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Pitt-Jolie brood – poor mites

As Mum often said , and The Beatles sang …  money can’t buy you love.

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The Fab Four (Beatles tribute band) Money can’t buy me love …
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Concert In The Park 2016

 

The point is …

You never know what goes on behind closed doors.  (Yep, Mum said that too!)………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Garden gates are intriguing.  They seem to beckon and invite into a world beyond. 

You might, however, lift the latch and walk through to find a disappointing Other Side.

Food for thought…

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Saw this one as I drove by last week.  Stopped to take a picture.

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Absolutely

Yes!  Made my day.

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This week’s Joy Moments

(1) Full moon  through bathroom skylight –         

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Midnight magic

(2)  Husband in Andy’s sunglasses –

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A refelctive mood

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(3) Shiny green bug in Garden –

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Neon green sheen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(3) Butterfly at mid-week picnic with  Little Girl and her mom –

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Reshma spotted it 
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Monarch butterfly

 

(4) Sky on kitchen counter/ in sink –

(5) Chipmunk in birdfeeder –

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Tea anyone?

(6) Apples in garden sun –

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Every single one!

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This week’s assignment:  Keep a journal of daily joy moments.

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Not really!
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Always!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.Smile for the day – 

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In mall parking lot

They don’t??

Enjoy!

Until next time,

sincerely

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Something’s a-foot

 

 

 

 

 

 

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You make your bed, you lie on it. (Another gem from Mum!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PS:  The pictures in this post (except the Pitt-Jolies) were random moments captured on my Ipad and phone.

Feel free to share, like this page and follow.   Continue reading “So Long Brangelina”

This is Susan

She makes a tedious trip to Walmart special.   

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This is Susan

Susan poses for the picture on a rare occasion when no one is in line behind me.  I offer to send it to her.

“No,” Her fingers play across an imaginary keyboard. “No email.  My husband does.  And son.”

She doesn’t know their addresses.

Our first conversation is about the dainty silver-dust-sprinkled fabric flower tucked behind her ear.  She wears it with elegance and panache.

 “I like your flower, Susan.”

“Thank you! I bought it in South Korea.”

“You’re nice,” she says one day.

“No, Susan, YOU are nice!”

I give her a hug.  I have to. 

Co-worker walks by at that moment.  “Everyone likes Susan,” she chuckles … and waits.

Yikes! Sorry lady, show’s over.   Ain’t huggin’ you!

 Her smile is a magnet. It makes my day. I find myself disappointed when Susan (with the pale sparkly eye shadow and fetching lipstick) is not at her station.

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Mum (who had umpteen quotes in her hat, bless her!) would say :

“Smile and the whole world smiles with you, weep and you weep alone.” 

In layman’s language:  No one seeks the company of a gloomy Gus.

Happiness is conditional upon circumstances.   Joy is a deliberate state of mind

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Just kidding

Next week’s assignment:  Look for joy moments.

 

 

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The little moments are the real biggies

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Some joy moments from this week  –

(1) Sun thumbing its nose at pregnant rain clouds 

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  • (2) Chipmunk pausing to scratch

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…. before darting away

 (3) Neighbour’s cat (a second before Puppy pounces)

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  • (4) My shadow family
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Eye-rolling patience with snap-happy Mom

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Summer’s all but done.  

Too cool to sit outside till the stars come out.

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Wonderful while it lasted

These leaves will soon change colour. 

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Flowers will fade and die.  Garden will begin to look like a bitter, unloved woman.

Thankful for –

(1) Cooler afternoons to walk with Puppy 

  • (2) One last summer snooze-‘n’-dream in the Secret Spot under Apple Tree last Saturday afternoon
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    Popsicle, Puppy and me – unexpected warm  temperatures 
  • (3) The Susans of the world who make the mundane bright

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Here’s to what’s to come …

 

Until next time,

sincerely

PS:  Lawn sign seen near home.  Really, who shops here?   

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Huh??

 

All the pictures in this post are random clicks on my IPad or phone.  Share the love, like the page and follow.  

 

 

So Call Me Pollyanna

So the last days of summer are upon us.  The sudden scorching temperatures have been a bonus. Sort of.  Late walks with Puppy sans sweater –

Continue reading “So Call Me Pollyanna”

Good Morning Colombo!

”So what do you do with your time, Mom?” Daughter asks.

“You know me,” I reply.  “I find things to do.”

Daughter’s voice, all the way down the line from Toronto to Colombo, is as clear as a bell.  It’s a free call, thanks to Viber, What’s Ap and Magic Jack.

The suitcases come out of storage four weeks before.  I pack in spite of an unhappy Puppy

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and head for the airport and a month in Sri Lanka, to visit my Dad in the Land of Dreams.

Dad turned eighty on March 23rd. March 28th marked the first anniversary of Mum’s passing.

This is my dad, a good-looking octogenarian –

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                                             He’s adjusted remarkably well to  being alone.   I miss Mum.  


April is the hottest month in Sri Lanka, with soaring temperatures and stifling humidity.  A perpetual film of moisture clings to the skin. 

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It’s snowing  in Toronto. 

“Aren’t you bored, Mom?”  Other Daughter enquires a week later.

Me bored?  Never!

Meet the aunties who are not really my aunts.  (In the Land of Dreams everyone is your aunty or uncle.  It’s respectful.)  Aunty Romola lives on the third floor,  Aunty Amitha – her friend from Australia -lives  round the corner. 

The aunties and I walk every morning, just after dawn.

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Romola de Mel (left) and, Amitha Fernando

The Ipad and camera phone are an established part of my anatomy.  The aunties are very forebearing.

Pause.  Click.  Pause again.  Click.  Aunties shrug and move on.  Catch up at a trot …

“Stop!”

Aunties halt.

“Our shadows.  Look!  Don’t move.”

Aunties strike a pose.  Aim and tap.

“No backsides, please!”  Aunty Romola warns.garagedoorback

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The aunties and me

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have the routine down pat –

“Excuse me!” (That’s me in one of three languages) “May I take your picture?” …

“They probably agree just because you’re a woman,” my friend Suresh says when I show him my cache of pictures.

I never thought of that. 

Aunty Romola squeaks when she sees this one –

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“That’s my friend Sharmini’s maid!” she says. “Where did you find her?”

I e-mail the picture to Aunty Rom, who sends it on to her friend, who chides the sweet old lady for posing for a stranger.  “Don’t you know they do terrible things on the internet?”

The poor thing is horrified.


Aunty Rom looks over her shoulder.  “Did you get that?”

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Picking flowers

“I did!”    

Aunty Romola is beginning to see with my eyes

She points again. “Get that!”

That  is a line of tiny clothing hanging out to dry between a lamp post and a tree. 

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Not far away, a  beggar family is asleep on the tiled threshold of an upscale  store.

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More Colomber 3-at-dawn moments –

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Drink up, baby, it’s good for you!
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You want my picture?  Why?
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Friday,  it’s mosque day.
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Hope for another day
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A sound night’s sleep

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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All dressed up.  Tuk-tuk awaits
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Off to temple with mom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On duty
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No school today

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Yep.  Just woke up.
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Early to school
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Before breakfast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(For more pictures go to Colombo Faces and Kollupitiya Places & Other Spaces)

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The city landscape is changing rapidy.  A handful of remembered landmarks from my girlhood remain –

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Lovely old colonial homes –

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Are being torn down –

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to make way for more high-rises-

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View from Dad’s condo

 

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This is Mr C.R. de Silva, a friendly retiree from Washington, DC.  We often pass him and his wife on their morning stroll.  Today he’s pruning the greenery hanging over his garden wall.

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Chanaka Richard de Silva 

 

This charming gent delights and intrigues me with his impeccable English and private school accent –  

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(It must be over 40 degrees celsius inside the lottery ticket booth.) I ask about his family.  He tells me he’s single and lives alone.  He’s inclined to chat and I’d love to linger.  The lights change,  time to cross Duplication Road. The aunties urge me on.


I ask Dad about Dr Chinniah, who was my dentist when I was a girl (too long ago).   Is he still in practice? 

Aunty Romola and I bump into Dr.  Chinniah on Galle Road.  

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Dr Nithi Chinniah (left) with Aunty Romola

Only in Sri Lanka!

Doyne and Sunitha are my neighbours in Canada –

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Doyne and Sunitha Seneviratne

They

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during the cold months,

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La dolce vita …                

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Kiri bath and all the accompaniments, fresh mango for dessert

I partake of a sumptuous breakfast and warm Sri Lankan hospitality in their fabulous home.


This year Sri Lanka celebrates the Sinhala and Tamil New Year on April 13th and 14th.   It’s all about the astrologically pre-determined auspicious time.

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For days the metropolis of Colombo becomes a ghost-town.  I stand in the middle of Galle Road, the capital’s normally traffic-choked main thoroughfare, to take pictures.

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Overnight showers have done nothing to ease the stickiness.  The streets glisten with pretty puddles.

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Aunty Romola suggests we pop in at Aunty Christine-and-Uncle Chandi’s for a quick visit.  Their home is along our route.    

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Chandi and Christine Chanmugam

Aunty Christine is my cousin Dileeni’s mother-in-law and Aunty Rom’s cousin (and not my aunt at all!). It’s 7:15 am. They are a charming couple, gracious and welcoming, notwithstanding the early hour.  They’ve been married for sixty plus years.  I meet them for the first time. We stay for fifteen minutes.  

Aunty Romola and I walk home holding cinnamon branches from Uncle Chandi’s well tended garden. They’ll serve as plant-props on Aunty ‘s balcony.

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Cinnamon branch shadows

Dad sometimes takes an evening stroll at Independence Square.

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and I accompany him.  Dusk is falling when  I happen upon this sweet old lady and her son.

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Mom and her boy

She beams when he tells me her age.  She’s ninety something years old.

This young family is happy to pose –

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Chip off the old block

I click and I head towards the walking track to get this one –

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Evening prayers (zoomed in from a distance)

and  collide into my once-upon-a-time friend, Piyali.  Piyali and I met (too many) years ago at a cooking class for young ladies.  I’ve often wondered where she was.

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Piyali Dissanayake 

We recognize each other instantly. I puff and pant to keep up as, never pausing, she sends me a friend request on Facebook and enters all my contact details into her phone.  It’s boiling hot,  I’m wilting.  

I find out that Piyali’s in Colombo for a few days.  She shuttles between Sri Lanka and Abu Dhabi, where her husband works. The timing of our meeting is amazing.  She hasn’t changed one bit. She’s a mother-in-law now.    


Dad shows me a copy of the family tree on his mother’s side.  It dates back to 1670.  I find Aunty Romola on it, so I guess she’s sort of an aunt after all!


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foot

 

 

 

 

 

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That’s me!

                         

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Morning Glory

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At Katunayake International Airport
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Katunayake International Airport

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Aunty Amitha messages me on Facebook .  She’s back in Melbourne.  

It’s spring again in Toronto.  The suitcases are unpacked.  I’m home.  

Puppy is pleased.

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I close my eyes and dream of Paradise.  It’s such a long plane ride away.

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paradise foodcourt

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There’s something about Sri Lanka.  It’s …

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To Paradise Island, land of endless summer, land of my birth –

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sincerely

 

Share the love, like this page and follw.   Until next time …

Two Slices Of Rainbow

Rush hour traffic on Friday morning. A chopped-off bar of colour appears ahead, directly above the steering wheel.

Sketch by Selina, 2016 F
Sketch by Selina,  February 2016

A sideways glance at my passenger. “Look at the gorgeous bit of rainbow!”

No response from Daughter.  I turn into the bus station, and …

Gasp!

An equal-opposite matching wedge in pastel colours. The slices cling to the sky, like two pillars on either side of the building.

Sketch by Selina,
Sketch by Selina, February 2016

Enchanting. Delighted …

“Look, another piece. Heaven is smiling!

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!  It’s going to be special!”

Daughter throws a puzzled look and hops out of the car. “Bye, Mom.”

Kids …

I park some feet away, remove sunglasses, raise camera-phone to click. No rainbow.

Huh?

Disappointed. Turn key in the ignition, put sunglasses back on and …  my chunks of rainbow are back!

Huh?

Lower the glasses to the tip of my nose. Rainbow-chunks disappear. Realization dawns. These stumps of rainbow are only visible through tinted glasses.   Daughter never saw them.  She must have thought I was nuts.  

I’ve just seen beauty un-visible to the naked eye.  Life’s like that sometimes, isn’t it?

I drive home realizing that

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because Inner Me wears tinted lenses born from the dark seasons she’s lived through.

I suppose the soul-sunglasses are to blame for how my eyes perceive  things. Like last week, when I was in the mall minding my business. I had this serious urge to step into Hallmark Cards and …

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Three ceramic ornaments in different spots — two below eye level and half turned away from where I stood — held hands and stood up to shout with one voice –

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Message for the day?

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 – honest! I’m

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and

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that IMG_20160123_201754

and IMG_20160114_150918

is now!

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to convince me and

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I took this picture some months back.

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How I laughed.  That’s me.  I can’t help it!


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sincerely

P.S.  Keep the sunglasses on!


 

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This post is dedicated to my friend Marietta with my thanks for the pictures she took and shared with me.  I’ve used one of them in this piece.  All the other photos are digital moments captured on my phone.

Synchro … what??

 

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“It’s weird, Rosie. I walked into Winners and the shelves came alive.  As if the display had been contrived just for me. The words were flying out from everywhere. Odd thing is, I hadn’t planned to go there. Just felt an overwhelming urge as I drove by, so I popped in.”

I show pictures –IMG_20160117_150601

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There was more.


I met Rosalyn two years ago, on Fanstory,  a website for writers.   Turned out she lived round the corner, not in Alaska, Australia or … Timbuctoo!

We meet at Tim Hortons

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 to talk about writing and … our dreams. The more we talk, the less unattainable they seem.

Rosalyn scrolls through the pictures on my phone. I chatter on –

“The same thing happened when I visited my cousin in Ohio over the Thanksgiving weekend. We went on an unplanned shopping trip and – oh, my goodness! – the place was alive with … dreams, Rosie.  Look!”

More pictures –

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“It’s called universal synchronicity,” Rosalyn volunteered.

“Synchro … what?”

“That’s what my son says it is. It means the universe is trying to tell you something.”

“The universe? You mean God?”

“Whatever you like to call it. Something’s trying to communicate with you.”

“To encourage me to keep dreaming?”

“I guess so.  Yes!”

“A man almost collided into my shopping cart last week. My eyes popped out of my head when the lettering on his T-shirt began to screech!”

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Rosalyn grins. “You got a picture?”

“I chased him down the Walmart parking lot and asked it I could. Told him the words were significant. Said I wasn’t a crazy woman!”

She chuckles. “You dared?”

“He obliged.  I had to record the moment. This stuff has been happening a lot lately.”

I flash more pictures –

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My words trip over one another. “I’ve caught more than a thousand moments  on my phone, Rosie.  Look at what I saw last Saturday, on a shelf at Winners.  It had no business there – ladies’ section, face up – staring at me … ”

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“It kind of grew and screamed … honest!  I was rushing past, not really looking.”  I barely pause for breath.  “I found a belated Christmas present in my mailbox some days back. From a friend I haven’t met in ages. I almost jumped out of my skin when I opened the package and  saw the words on the picture frame.”

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A dream come true!

Rosalyn, bless her, is never sceptical. 

“I had to see someone on Saturday. When I drove into the parking lot of her building, something grew out of the corner of my eye. It filled my line of vision.

Rosalyn looks amused. “You took a picture, of course.”

“Of course!”

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“It was parked at the far end. There was absolutely no reason for me to notice it.”

“And then I had this compelling to drop in at Indigo Books.  I hadn’t been there  in ages.  This  paper weight jumped up the moment I walked in –

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The words seemed to be on every item that caught my eye. Suddenly, I heard a child’s voice mumbling, ‘Dream bigger, darling’.  I got goose bumps.  The kid was reading out loud.  He held a pencil case in his hands, the words were etched on it.  It felt pleasant, you know, and kind of weird!”

It’s snowing outside. The medium white hot chocolate is warm in my hands. I take a deep breath and sigh. “I’m excited, Rosie!”

“Me too,” Rosalyn replies.  “This synchronicity thing has been happening to me too!”


_20150618_162422

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sincerely


This post is dedicated to my friends – Rosalyn (who’s such a wonderful listener), Alice (who delighted me with the unexpected gift) and Karen (who dropped it off in my mailbox).  With my love and thanks.


 

One Thousand Things

I went moon-chasing last week.  I made a dash around the neighbourhood, trying to capture the fascination of a

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through my camera.  She sailed into the

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, an ice-queen in a shroud of wispy cloud-cobwebs.  I inhaled my soul-food for the day.  


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 .”  My friend Bev presses a book into my hands, some months ago, in the summer… 

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 by

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http://www.aholyexperience.com   http://www.facebook.com/onethousandgifts

I

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 I am  captivated.  So commences a dazzling new journey.  A journey to finding thankfulness in all things.  Finding

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in the mundane, the difficult, the tragic.  Being thankful no matter what.  Intentional thankfulness.

My smartphone and

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never stray from my side.  I have to catch the joy-moments coming out of nowhere in a series of joy-gifts I never saw as gifts before.   Like these …

.

Africa-shaped puddle
Africa-shaped puddle
Supermarket shadow
Supermarket shadow
Rosy dawn skies
Rosy dawn skies
Rainbows on floor tiles
Rainbows on floor tiles
  • Sun-splash on gum day
    Sun-splash on glum day
  • Puppy in wee-hour glow
    Puppy in wee-hour glow
light 'n' shadow on kitchen wall
Light ‘n’ shadow on kitchen wall
Microwave reflection
Microwave reflection
Tawny tree upside down
Tawny tree upside down
  • Sky-in-the-parking-lot
    Sky-in-the-parking-lot

    There’sIMG_20150814_224957

The list goes on.  And on.  Pausing to discover the fragrance welling out of intentional thankfulness.  My lungs filled with joy. 

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Ann Voskamp (just Ann with no e she calls herself) – The Farmer’s wife,  mother of six – writes (paraphrased) –

Thankfulness releases joy, which releases miracles …

It feels as if

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have come to reside in my heart. 

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I began to change.  This is the

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Thankful for the ugly, the lovely. The precious, the un-pretty.  The simple, the complex,  the

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And all the in between, mundane stuff.  Intentional thankfulness that generates sublime joy.  Surely this is

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, the daily

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 I went to the bookstore to buy a copy of One Thousand Gifts for my aunt. 

 “Funny,” the girl behind the counter said. “Lately, there’s been a rush of people coming for the book.  There aren’t too many left.”

All IMG_20151029_175957I replied, “That’s probably everyone I know coming to get one.  I haven’t been able to stop talking about it.”

 “I’ve heard it’s good,” she replied.

Bless you, my dear.  It is!


 If my family think I’m bananas, they

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, you know.  So I try to

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because I  choose to

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that

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and

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 .  I

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 .  It’s

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!   I sigh over pretty puddles and go

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And that’s why I went moon-chasing last week.

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Is this 

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?  Quite possible!  IMG_20151102_220835

IMG_20151101_231436   Something happened.  It’s unleashed the

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They don’t seem all that far-fetched anymore.   I understand that

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Me?  (Smiling!)

                             


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, Reader.  May you find gifts in the ordinary things.

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Here’s to

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sincerely

Shadow Woman

 She wore a

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 and

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outfit, loads of

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jewellery and

_20150716_201647

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 , her

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teased and sprayed. 

She has

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.  She is

_20150701_155005

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  …  “

IMG_20151008_175447 lady,” I chirped.  “You look

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.  Just

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.”

_20150617_141400

,” she cooed.  “

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for keeping

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Have you

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?”   I gave her a hug. “

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, Cherie.”

 She has

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of

IMG_20150925_202257black-and-white movie

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. The  pouty

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-type

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of

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.  It’s

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on a

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evening in the summer. This is my friend Cherie. She turns eighty next year.

Eighty!

 “You have to be friendly with your mirror,”

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, tapping on the restaurant table with pearl-tipped fingers.

 Her voice was silver-screen husky.

 

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to say,

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 is full of

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,” he snorted. “ It’s a

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.  Before you

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 it’s

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, and taken

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.  And

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?

_20150619_112752.  Do you like what you see?  You stare and say, ‘What have you done to me?’”

Her

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 , resumed his perusal of the menu.  Not in a

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today!  He’s a

IMG_20150928_184535, but a bit of a

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sometimes.

She was more than

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He couldn’t

_20150701_144738her

_20150630_173341.  “

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. That is why you have to be friendly, so you are comfortable with what you see.  See?”

He rolled his eyes and began, in

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French, to discuss

IMG_20151008_165436 with the waiter –

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I remembered my find that morning.  The blue card tucked into the door of the  ladies’ room in a Montreal public building.  Here it is –

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, it declared.  You are magnificent…

An advertising gimmick, with the name and address of a professional photographer on the reverse.

My initial reaction: I am?

I looked at Cherie.

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.  She lives it.  This is exactly how she feels  inside –

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. (

_20150716_201911 !)

“Cherie,

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,” I gushed.  “Just look at

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like this!  I

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You have a

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presence.

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, you know. It makes you

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younger than you are.”

 She grew

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. “

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.   You can’t

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.  That’s exactly what life is.

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, I thought I would be young

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Didn’t we all?


_20150708_014011we were young and in love?”  She smiled at Daniel.  He grunted. 

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 It’s

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, and you’re living with

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, you know, by the map of time on my person.”  She touched her cheek. You can’t

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the lines away  like

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with a

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. When age hits,

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.  There’s no annual

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or

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to protect you from the inevitable. ” 

 “So

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 the secret  to staying

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 and beautiful, Cherie?”

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.  So does youth.  There are

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 …”

 “Tell me.” 

She took

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out of her

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(My friend  has an incurable

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.)

“The

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never lasts long and

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 don’t work,

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this is what 

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You’ve

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 aware.  Learn  

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IMG_20151008_170034 to

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 .”

Smoke signals and drowning –  what a

_20150620_144406

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way  of putting it …

 She reached for a

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 of

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. “We can all feel like

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,” she said.

 “We can?”

“Yes!

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 with the passage of time, my dear.”   She looked down at the

IMG_20150829_095926 on her dessert plate and grinned.  “It can be delicious!

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.  Find

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_20150513_183856

IMG_20150815_005339

_20150610_185239

_20150610_185226

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reality.

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 dry up and shrivel away,

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have to. I refuse to turn into a

_20150624_193644

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.  I will not fade away into a

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.  That would be a

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, I think!

Yes, Cherie, it would …

It’s

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IMG_20150921_181458,” she cooed.  “You can do it.”

“Come on Cherie, it’s 

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.” 

IMG_20151008_174614dear, you can

_20150614_122012

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!”

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.   Tell me how.  I

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a

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 journey into time.” 

She took a sip of water.  “

_20150617_141838

_20150624_190458

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approach it.  

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.  If you are

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, tell yourself, ‘

IMG_20150619_132701428

IMG_20151023_174027

, but if you

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IMG_20150911_090240553

 .  Remember,

_20150503_131334

on the stage of your life. It’s up to me to make

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years the best

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You have to experience the

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of living in

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IMG_20150821_193946

and

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, do your best to

IMG_20151008_165543the rickety mindset.  Make it

IMG_20151008_165151

IMG_20150821_201338

 to waste on such things. You have to discipline your mind.  It’s like

_20150716_202226

_20150506_125218

Savour them all. 

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.  There’s a right way and a

_20150702_223412

to approach life. 

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You make the 

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_20150513_182932

.”

“Really?”

She was emphatic. “Really! 

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 , but certainly better. 

_20150701_183016

 are the full-blown ones, darling.”

 I have

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I

_20150428_143647

of her

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optimism.  This woman is a

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_20150428_143951

.  My

_20150704_234528I

IMG_20150930_173424

_20150428_144613

.  I’m

_20150618_162405

Cherie resumed her monologue. “

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,

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Don’t dwell on the