Good morning all:

Weekly Wisdom:

“Are comfy beds man’s most natural enemy?” —Anonymous (who’d want it broadcast that they were the brains behind that quote)

This is an odd post. What would a bear write home about during hibernation? Something like; “wish you were here, having a fine time”?

Well, that is much like what I’m experiencing trying to write this week’s post. It’s difficult writing this morning while simultaneously hunkering down in the cold (surviving on many bowls of steaming oatmeal and mugs filled with equally steaming coffee). The java is especially ‘solid’ this morning—and that is a good thing.

Winter – I remember, with a degree of fondness and nostalgia, thinking of winters past. Pulling the kids on their sleds, going on hikes, helping build forts and igloos, even ice cold times on the horse drawn sled rides at Paul’s. All that stuff has pretty well disappeared into the fogs of time. Winter these days is mainly a pain.

With the temperatures hovering around and below the zero mark (Fahrenheit) I have become totally obsessed. The other day we had a 6” to 8” snow fall. That day I was out in that misery three times over with my little snow shovel. This was under the guise of “staying ahead” of the snow dump. It got to the point where the neighbor’s started to get worried.

I got so into this whole snow removal thing that twice over I went over to Adrianne’s (she is a single parent this week) to aid in keeping her “ahead” of the mess.

Eventually people were impressed with the perfectly clean drive, sidewalk, and walkways around our house. The best in the neighborhood (except for Jeff down the street – he’s as obsessed as I am). The reality is that I am experiencing a serious case of cabin fever. And, unlike that bear, I just can’t hibernate till springtime.

Maybe I’ll just spend some time this morning thinking of a steamy night walking about one of the city squares in Guanajuato (ok, maybe it was Cuernavaca) with a bottle of wine in my hand listening to a mariachi band in black outfits and lots of silverwork. I remember everyone, including the overweight mariachi’s, sweating profusely.

Winter reads – One great thing about winter weather is discovering just how easy it is to get absorbed into a good book—maybe several good books. My new Kindle is being put through its paces. I am still astounded by the underlying technology of the Kindle. I actually timed an ordering event – 14 seconds from selecting a book to it being available for reading when I recently downloaded The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin. (alright, no comments please about the status of my life for timing the ordering of a book).

I have also started to make use of Project Gutenberg. This project has organized, for digital download, over 33,000 books – for free! All these books are available in the public domain and all their work is absolutely legal and searchable in a variety of ways. The future is really here!

The Dutch lost an amazing author late last year, Harry Mulisch. Mulisch’s writings have just grabbed me. Currently I am completely absorbed by his opus work; The Discovery of Heaven. Until now I had not read any book that is as philosophical, adds some science fiction as well as science fact, has gripping drama, spot-on historical details, and paints such stunning word portraits of people and places, while adding humor into the mix. Normally I’ll get to a chapter’s end and park a book for the evening. Here I get to a chapter’s end and then find myself sneaking a read of the first one or two pages of the next chapter before closing it.

Return of Tevita – around dinner time Tevita will be home from his California adventure. If you remember, last week at this time I had just returned from the airport where I had dropped him off. The reason I couldn’t go into detail was due to the fact that his was a stealth trip.

His younger brother has been in southern California for nearly two years. Tevita hadn’t seen him since prior to leaving Tonga. The reason his brother was in California was that he was fulfilling his church’s 2-year mission obligation. It also meant that contact with family and friends was quite restricted. In April he’ll be done and at that time his visa will expire and he’ll be homeward bound. For Tevita this became a magic week as he pulled a huge surprise with this visit.

Thanks to Tevita’s cousin and to Uncle Art for the hospitality so that Tevita was able to pull off his big surprise. Really good stuff!

Closing –This weekend it will be Happy Birthday to nephew Joel and to Cathy. Also, am wishing GiGi peace and comfort as Marcia’s and my thoughts are with her.

Lastly, Marcia tells me that I better start using the camera some more since my photo efforts are now “scraping bottom.” Marcia insisted that I quote her and so her  quote is used with her permission.



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