Pinkie Crack

When the Lockdown began I tried writing on my website every day to…well, I’m not sure why. Perhaps I was trying to document the experience first hand or maybe connect with my neighbors or contribute something to the whole event. After about a month and a half I had to rest. We all did really, didn’t we? We rested another year! I am embarrassed to admit I really, genuinely thought the Lockdown would last 30 days and life would go back to normal. It was my mom and the more mature folks in my social circle who predicted it would be a year before folks returned to the office or to school, “a year if we’re lucky” they said.

Washington State went into Lockdown March 2020. Our state governor has declared beginning July 1st 2021, wearing masks in public will be optional, not mandatory. *Some folks have already stopped wearing masks after being fully vaccinated. It’s a little confusing right now isn’t?* I have personally decided to wear my mask until July 1st. However, last week I had an “Oh shit!” moment walking into Lowes Hardware store. About halfway down an isle I saw a person with a mask on, and realized I forgot to put my mask on. I just freakin’ walked into the store barefaced like I had no respect for all human life on the planet. What the hell? I touched my face to confirm and sure enough–NO MASK. However on that fine June day, I noticed fairly quickly that half of the patrons and clerks were NOT wearing masks. (?!?!) Was I safe from social condemnation? Yes, from HALF of the people apparently. “OK, so today I’ll be one of THOSE people.” I joked to myself. I went directly to the isles I needed, checked out at self-pay and hustled out of there.

Can I just say how exhausted I am of all this. One year and three months of all this. I’m using hand sanitizer throughout my day, so much so that occasionally my skin cracks. Has this happen to you? If you are fortunate enough to have access to an ample supply of hand sanitizer and/or you’ve been a front line worker the whole 15 months I imagine you’re skin has also cracked.

Here is a picture of a recent crack on a fold of my skin. (BTW, a very difficult angle for a photo) Under my right pinkie is a new “line”. A couple of years ago I studied palmistry for a story. I knew this area of the hand is about marriage. As a middle-aged divorced woman I giggled a bit. Was a new marriage being forged into my future or perhaps another being wiped out? Either way it required hydrogen peroxide to heal. My mind traveled down that thought a bit, farther than necessary as I often do… How wonderful it would be if troubled couples could simply dip themselves in a healing solution to fix their relationships. Many arguments stem from past hurts, hurts and calluses that were formed before the marriage began. We sometimes bring those unresolved events into our new relationships. As I date a little these last few years I find the most attractive dates are those who are actively working on self improvement. In your 40’s and 50’s it’s time for a “refresh” I think, whether you are single or in-couple. You are no longer who were at 22, or even 32. What do you think?

Here is a meme for my mood today. I’ll try not to take myself too seriously. Hope you have a super day. -Shannon


*Fully vaccinated people can resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/fully-vaccinated.html

Day 58: God, is it over yet?

Shower Thoughts:  Being proactive is rarely rewarded because if your actions avoid a tragedy, there is no tragedy to prove your actions were warranted.

Hello.  Whatcha up to?  Do you ever stare at the popcorn bumps in the ceiling and try to find shapes?  Sometimes I do.

This morning the sun is sleeping behind the clouds and doesn’t want to come out.  The traffic by about 10 a.m. is normal levels, minus the Canadian shoppers.  People are very anxious to get back to normal.  The hardware stores are busy, some taco trucks are open again.  Yep.

Mt. Rainier seen from the Puyallup Valley, Washington.

I decided to begin putting some words down on this idea for an essay.  I’m hoping to effectively use a childhood experience to explain how important good vegetable and fruit field workers are.  I’ll share a section with you.

When I was growing up…

In the Pacific Northwest, hundreds of kids from the suburbs were sent to the valleys to pick berries. One summer, my brother, two cousins, and I were among the unfortunate to learn lessons, gain skills, and save our parents some babysitting money. We were 10, 11, and 8 year old kids, too young to be left alone all day. You see our parents were from the mid-west.  In the early 60’s they, like thousands of others, left their childhood farm homes right out of high school to move to Seattle for good jobs and a new life.  As small business owners, they sold the idea of berry picking to us as an “easy way” to earn pocket money for the summer—but it was a trick.  We heard it in their voices.  When we fought and push came to shove, finally, the truth came out, “We want you to learn good work ethics like we did milking cows before school! It’ll be good for you!”  Our parents have lost their minds. Come this Tuesday in a warm 1978 June, my brother, two cousins and I were being bussed to hell.

Before sunrise, the grownups put us on a bus that conveniently picks kids up at the local school. We each have a sack lunch with our names written on it with a thick black sharpie. The oldest has two dollars in quarters in his pocket in case of trouble.  We are completely unprepared.

The story ends when we are fired from picking strawberries and run into town to buy popsicles.  Suburbanites transferring from an agricultural lifestyle into the true consumers that they were born to be.  Our parents raised us in the sidewalked communities, not the dirt clodden American farmland.  What did they expect?

Here is my mood expressed by meme.  I’m seeing more and more folks meeting up outside this month.  Take care -Shannon

Writing “The End” on Your Novel

I don’t reblog that often, but after reading this post by Susan Wingate (an award winning author) I had to.
Writing IS a labor of love. I agree with Wingate. Something is lost if we write “mechanically”. Plenty of used book stores have books, but how many stories really change the reader, affect a generation? I don’t think robots can do that, only the human spirit.

Susan Wingate

I was once told by a self-proclaimed writing guru that writing the end of a book shouldn’t be an event. That we shouldn’t get all wrapped up in the fact that we finished a book–your first or your fiftieth, that we should simply move on to the next story and plow through that one too.

And I get that. You don’t have to tell me to keep my nose down and my fingers flying. I write daily.

But, here’s the thing: I would understand this setting aside of emotional attachment to my writing more if I were a robot having zero feelings and no degree of the understanding of one’s own self-worth. But, I’m not a robot. I’m a human being with all the longings anyone else has.

So, as a human being who also writes for a living, the satisfaction I feel from finishing another story is tantamount to, say, crossing the finish line…

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