My friend Betro was telling me about an old buddy of hers and how they drifted apart. She said that her friend had started over in a way, and was living a new life. Although Betro had been a positive force for her friend, she, like the friend’s former life, was left behind.


Have you ever experienced something like that? Have you had a friend who just sort of stopped being your friend, for no good reason? I certainly have. More than once. And in a few instances, I’ve desperately wanted to understand and to feel some sense of closure. But that’s not the way things have gone down for me, so I’ve felt a sense of limbo where a couple of relationships are concerned. I’ve not known how to deal with it and I’ve not liked it, either.


Anyhoo, after Betro told me the history with her friend, she said she understood. She didn’t like losing her friend, but the understanding is what got me. Betro said she figures that she had been a part of her friend’s former life. And that when said friend started over, he needed to break all ties and really start over. To truly forget the past. Including Betro. She thinks that as someone from his former life, she might remind him of the pain from that time. And she doesn’t hold it against him.


Wow! I sat listening to her, rapt. And I suddenly understood why at least one of my friendships ended without any input from me. My friend, from what I understand, is living a new life. And of course I want her to be beyond happy. If I’m part of her past, her painful past, well, I can understand her choosing to let go. And I cannot hold it against her.


Of course – there is a chance Betro’s life lesson has nothing to do with any of my experiences. Maybe I futzed up things with my friend in some irreparable way, and simply have no idea what I did. But I like to think of my friend out there in the world, making a beautiful, new existence for herself. And I like to think of her smiling. With new, fabulous friends and new, fabulous joy. So I’m gonna stick with Betro’s wisdom and leave it at that.


Finally – I feel peace where my old friend is concerned. And you know what? I’ll take it.

The Rearview



This year has been a doozy. There have certainly been some ugly times and occurrences. I don’t deny that. But as I look in the rearview at the last 12 months, I’m choosing to focus on some positives. I thank you in advance for indulging me…


Slippers – Yes, after decades of wearing socks for warmth, I finally broke down and got myself some damned slippers. I’m wearing them as I type and I wear them all the time! I love them truly. I love them madly. I love them deeply. I had no idea slippers could change my little world.


Saying Yes – This year saw me taking a different tack when faced with situations/opportunities that frighten me. For example, in the past, I never would have said yes when asked to participate in a public reading. But I did it, so there you go. Other experiences have been added to my life as well, and a few more are already on the calendar. When I was recently asked to do something very cool and very scary, I told the organizer the truth: This idea is amazing and yet the very thought makes me terribly uncomfortable. Because I’m afraid, I think I’d better say Yes. I’ll participate.


London – I about blogged that trip to death. And I’m still talking about how great it was! No doubt, Mister had a lot to do with that as he was such a great fellow traveler. But there was also something magical about the vacation. Sure – Kate Bush was a dream. But so was the Harry Potter Tour. And so was Dinner By Heston Blumenthal. And so was our beautiful Navy-colored hotel room. And so was every other fabulous thing. Again, I’m still talking about it.


Painting – I finished a painting a couple of weeks ago and I can’t tell you how happy I am. I’m a slow painter, y’all. I own that. So when I decided I wanted to finish this particular piece by year’s end, my painting buddy Nicole laughed and laughed. (Sadly – she didn’t just meet me.) Betting her I would finish spurred me to actually do it. And I did. Good for me.


Books – I read some top-notch books this year and reading is one my greatest pleasures, so I’m quite happy with this one. And I’m reading a couple of grand books now. As I’m known to say, no matter how long I live I’ll never get to read all the books I want. So I’ll take what I can.


Letting Go – This one is partly due to having read The Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown. I certainly don’t claim to be a Master or anything, but I’m learning people. And that counts. It feels good to not have to try and make sure every friggin’ thing is just so. We all know how well that turns out, right? The work on this one continues.


My Kate Bush Mug – This may seem like an odd thing to love, love, love, but I do, do, do. Love, love, love it I mean. I keep it on the back of the shelf, so when the dishwasher is holding a few to-be-cleaned cups I reach in and find the Kate mug. I can’t tell you how big I smile when that happens. The cup reads “It’s coming! It’s in the trees!” It makes me very happy, y’all.


D2T2 – This little creative idea was born at the end of last year during a beautiful, drunken afternoon. And though it’s been challenging to undertake an artistic endeavor each week of the year (yes – I know we dropped the ball a few times), it’s been inspiring. And I have to say – the creative wheels seem to be turning more than before we undertook the task. What’s more – these projects netted art! How cool is that?


Mister – Nothing I write here could ever come close to conveying my truth where this guy is concerned. I can’t properly describe my feelings, my respect, my love. To say I’d open a vein for the man is just scratching the surface. I love him more than butter. It’s crazy. It’s surreal. It must be love.


I could keep going, but this is a pretty nice list. And to end it on the love of my life seems appropriate.


So here’s to the New Year. To New Adventures. To New Opportunities. To New Life. Cheers!

Beer Clug



Mister and I hosted a Beer Clug meeting this past weekend, and we managed some major damage, er, drinking. And eating. It was a lot of fun.


The meeting marked the first time having folks over at the new pad. Boxes are still in corners. The floor is half-stripped. The walls aren’t painted. We had to use paper plates because most of ours are still packed away, somewhere in the garage. This state of flux would ordinarily keep me from allowing the mail carrier a peek inside. Seriously, I’ve pretended I wasn’t home when the carpet’s needed vacuuming. But for some reason, I wasn’t phased. It was all okay. There was room for the clug members, and that was enough.



Maybe I’m finally learning to let go. I’m not sure. That would be nice, though.


Growing up. It does a body good.

My Old Bike



This is me on my old bike. I had just gotten it, as a hand-me-down, and I think the love and appreciation shows.


I had decided I wanted a bicycle. But as I can be a bit, um, frugal, I just couldn’t bring myself to pay a honking lot of money. It was one of those times when the universe was listening: right after deciding, a friend told me she had gotten a new bike and I could have her old one. Hallelujah!


The first thing I did was pump up the tires. Then I took the old gal to a local bike shop, where they put on a new chain, front & rear baskets and a new seat. Pink – thank-you-very-much. I added the handlebar streamers & Elvis horn and got myself a lock. I was thrilled.


I started riding her as much as I could. For exercise. Errands. Fun. After a short while, someone told me I should really be riding with a helmet. I listened and found myself a shiny, pink topper for safety.


Why all the bicycle chatter? Because I’ve just said goodbye to my old bike. Mister insisted I get a new one. And this new gal is alright. Her brakes work perfectly. She’s just the right size for my frame. She’s lightweight. She’s, well, new.


My old bike was too big for me. The brakes required some finesse, and plenty of notice. She weighed a ton. It was a lot of work – riding that bike – as the brakes permanently rubbed against the wheels, creating friction and drag. A trip to the grocery store was an amazing workout, especially after the baskets were loaded. (And don’t even ask how hard it was to pedal home after loading the baskets with wine.) The truth is, riding my old bike wasn’t what you’d call easy.


But it sure was fun. And I put more miles on that thing than I can count. She was there for me when my car wasn’t. She was there for me when I didn’t want to pay for gas. Basically, she was there for me. And I’ll not forget that.


I took the baskets and the Elvis horn. They’ll be on my new bike. It isn’t quite the same, and I won’t pretend it is. Over time, I’m sure she’ll begin to look like a part of me. I’m still getting to know her. And that’s okay.


That old bike is now residing at her original owner’s home, where she’ll be ridden by girls at sleep-over parties and gatherings. She’ll be there when an extra ride is needed. And some lucky girl will surely struggle with the bike’s weight and brakes. But she’ll also dig that pink seat and streamers (as I left those behind). And when she feels the wind in her face and laughs with her friends, I hope she’ll be visited by the ghost in the machine. Maybe there will be an Elvis song on the breeze, as she pedals along into the adventure of her day…