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Swamp Thoughts

Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Year of 5's

Coincidence? I think not. Or so I'd like to think...well, if ever we can call someone uncommitted, I'm yer gal. Anyway, back to the topic of 5's:

The number 5 has recently come to my realization as a significant number in my life. Every 5 years, it seems, my life takes a significant turn. I can start at 1st grade, when I had my first "boyfriend". Now, I won't get too personal about this significant event because I don't quite have the cajones to admit it to the world of webcrawlers. So, let's just say the decision I made that fateful day still effects me at my tender age. Fast forward 5 years and it is 6th grade, and man oh man, that year was a doozy: I changed schools (which wasn't such a big deal since I had changed to several schools until that point), and decided that life wasn't as grand as I had thought. I became a cynic and an introverted agnostic. I think Catholic school can do that to the best of us.

Another 5 years pass and I graduate from high school. I decided that year that high school wasn't worth my time. I needed to learn, and all I was getting from high school was a bunch of social flack from fellow students and repetition from the education material. Most teachers were disciplining students and in the power scuffle, I became bored and irritated by the lack of actual useful time spent at the institution. I had taken college classes that year that expanded my knowledge and I was eager to continue it in a more mature and progressive environment. Graduated at the age of 16, people, and it can be done despite what counselors and teachers say.

At the ages of 21-22, I decided that now my university has become repetitive and boring and that I was gonna graduate. I collected all my units and presented them to my university and graduated by 22. I got hired on into a great job (at the time) and stepped into a phase of my life where I earned many things that take some people a lifetime to accomplish (or so I was told). So, graduating at the time that I did allowed me to do a lot of things just before the door closed on the opportunities I had access to. I saw other university friends who graduated just a quarter after me falter in their chosen career path and didn't earn the money needed to exploit the economy at the time.

Poof, another 5 years go by and now I've spent my life source working for a company that I really liked at one time. I suffered from sleep deprivation which is a terrible illness. You can see on WebMD that it can cause a lot of physical and emotional changes, and luckily I was able to identify the source of my depression before it got a real hold of me. I decided that I needed to turn my life around that year. If nothing changes, nothing changes. So I changed something every week of my life, no matter how insignificant it was (buying a CD I had no idea what was on it to driving a different route somewhere). I kicked off this event by jumping out an airplane with a man strapped to my back. Yes, I could've wrote "tandem", but y'know, it's funnier the way I said it. So there....stop judging me!

Which leads me to this year: 5 years after. What will happen this year? Keep watch and see. I'm excited to find out. I already have some inklings, but Life is anything but predictable. I've already damaged my knee from snowboarding, so maybe this year I'll remember it as the first year that my knee started bothering me. Every winter for the next 5 years (at least) when I get pain in my knee, is when I can say, "Yeah, that year I didn't wear knee pads and it still bothers me today, so kids, wear knee pads if your gonna go snowboarding/skate boarding...etc." And then the kids ruin their knees anyway because what does old auntie know anyway? Aren't Life lessons wonderful? I especially enjoy watching my nieces and nephews learn the hard way when we give them the information before they learn it the hard way. Ha! So, I'm cruel, but I don't waste my breath or get frustrated. Sometimes, you just gotta let them do.

So, the number 5. Another coincidence is that in the art of Numerology, my birthday adds up to the number 5. I've got 5 fingers on each hand and 5 toes on each foot (now who can say that, huh?). I also saw a movie, a really really bad one, one that I should've stopped watching within the first 5 minutes but watched it all the way through, where, at the end, the Dust Devil holds his hand up and says, "These five rays will stay with you." The woman then shoots his hand with a shotgun, which also makes his head explode. Pieces of his brain and skull fall to the ground, which was soooo neat. Now who can say that they would watch such a movie so they can hear those words and remember them even today? I tell you, my crazy readers, that this 5 thing has substance for me.

Have you evaluated your life? Can you see the numbers? Can you see any patterns? Personally, we see our lives the way we want to see them. We make our lives the way we want to make them. If this year isn't the year for you, make it your year. Find the pattern. Have fun. Go crazy. It sure works for me!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

By Golly, I Think We've Got a Wetness Situation Here!

Yes, my loyal readers and those first timers, water has been escaping the clouds and the sea to fall upon my meager clothing. I travel with it in my hair and in my shoes. It has been an ever present pal that keeps me soggy during the day and the night. You might ask if I were homeless, but no, I am not. In fact, I was fortunate enough to visit Hawaii during the holiday season.

The day before my departure: it rained. It was kinda a bummer 'cause I wanted to walk my dog (yes, my doggie is still very healthy and very alive - good hardy Danish, German, and English stock) before I brought her to the kennel.

The drive up was dry, but leaving from Oakland was a chore since we had to wait 2 hours on the plane for them to update the software, and then we were off for a 5 hour journey. Arriving in Hilo, we were greeted with the soft pitter-patter of rainy shoe-droplets. Ah, yes, how very rainforesty and exotic, I thought. And then the pattern continued for the rest of the two weeks. But did the rain stop us? NO! We drove all about the island, soaking up the rain (not the rays). It didn't rain in Kona, the California coast of Hawaii, both in weather and in attitude. The north had a bunch of cowboys (Parker Ranch being one, if not the biggest, cattle ranches in the U.S., yes even beyond Texas). The Puna district had all sorts of hippies. The island was very distinct in the type of people it adopted to each area.

I loved all the activities I did. I went snorkeling, sailing, helicoptering, kayaking, wine tasting (even though I don't like wine), volcanoing, spelunking, looking (at gardens), and driving. I have some pictures, but the best snapshots and memories are in my head.

When we arrived back in Oakland, and guess what: yeah, it was raining. It rained all the way back to my hometown and it rained the next day. Here, when it rains, it's cold. In Hilo, I spent all day in flip-flops, despite the rain (and mosquitoes).

Now, I've been back for a week, and I 've been busy every hour of the day. I have a new vacation planned - why, yes it is snowboarding. I have a new victim, I mean- buddy accompanying me on the trip. We'll see how he fares, but if I'm lucky, he'll become addicted to the sport - all selfish reasons for the hope, of course. Well, if he does become addicted, it'll be good for him in certain ways, too.

Okay, wish me luck in keeping whole and having fun in the mountains of snow! Hope yer'all being good and having fun, too!