From the Past

Wife, circa 2004, doing what she loved best… interacting with her family. Shot with my Nikon D100 and a Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8, probably wide open.

As I woke yesterday morning, the thought passed through my mind that “it was a bad week.” That made me pause for a moment and consider my inner dialogue.

“No,” I rethought, “it was a hard week.” I then nodded to myself, slipped on my moccasins, and rose to go make a coffee and run through my morning regimen.

Wife would have turned 71-years old this week. I always take a few moments on her birthday to remember her. In the evening, I lift a glass to the east (which I often do anyway) to salute her and remember our communal life. The day is always a mix of happy and sad (maybe the definition of “nostalgia”), but I am OK with that.

In addition, my maternal grandmother, “Nana,” would have been 108-years old this week. She lived to be 100-years old before she wore out and died. She was one of the sweetest people you could ever meet and complemented my grandfather well. They were good people, God-fearing, and unselfish.

It was my grandmother who took me to buy my first book. I was about five-years old. The book was a 7th grade science textbook.

Work has been challenging the last few months; Hell, the last couple of years. There were many deadlines (still a few out there), lots of pressure, and requirements to do things I have not done or not done in a long time.

Pressure and deadlines are the life of a consultant. I accept that. But there has been little room to eddy out between and it is wearing on me. In fact, I am pretty worn down at the moment — to the point of considering to chuck it all, sell everything that I cannot carry in my rig/camper, and drive off.

So, after my thought on a bad week passed and was corrected, I made my coffee and returned to find The Girl had been licking her wounded toe. I hate to leave the collar on her all the time, but she knows when I am distracted and cannot help herself but to lick the wound, stripping the scab from it and delaying the healing action that goes on under the cover of the scab.

So, the collar went back on. With the collar on, she exudes misery and is very careful to tell me just how f*($*#g miserable she really is. Yes, she works it.

So, she added a little fuel to my internal fire.

I sat at the computer and took care of those things that demanded my attention. I then dressed, removed her collar, but her tracking and control collars on, repaired the control module for her control collar (broken knob), made sure I had water and a snack, and we headed to Silver Saddle Ranch to walk.

We took an alternate route to keep her off of the access road. It is hard and rocky and hurts her foot. We took the trail to the powerline trail, walked up the hill through the mass of sand burrs, and back through the Ranch compound. It was almost a three-mile walk. The sun was good for my soul and the exercise good to wear her down.

As we approached the rig and the end of our walk, I thought “I’d like a chili dog… I’m hungry.” So, we loaded up and headed north to the Sonic where I satisfied my craving. I shared the list bite of chili dog and half of the tater tots and the last bit of my strawberry shake with her. Then we headed home — for her to rest and me to finish my work for the day.

I also had a short nap with The Girl and then loaded her back in to the rig for a grocery run. She might as well go with me as stay at home. It was an expensive run at about $300, but it had been awhile since I last went. So, it was no surprise.

I ended my day with a bowl of chicken chili (from the crockpot) and a gin and tonic. I also fed The Girl and she got a bit of meatball left over from my last Olive Garden run.

At the end of the day I was tired and having The Girl snuggling next to me was good. The day ended with me in a better headspace and grateful for the day, grateful for The Girl, and grateful that I had Wife in my life for so many years.

The capture was made almost 20-years ago with my Nikon D100 (my first dSLR), a Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8 zoom, most likely at 200mm and f/2.8. She was doing what she loved best — taking care of her family.

She is most definitely missed. But, still, I am grateful. Life is good.