Don’t ask me why, but the letter B, buzzes in my brain. Be careful, beware, be who you are, be kind, be in sync.
Last month Jim and I filled the truck with our recycling. The abundance of newspapers, the wine bottles, the plastic, and the aluminum cans, make their own statement and keep me humbled. This time however, a nest of bees had nestled inside a cardboard box, making a home. The swarm attacked my elbows and ankles. Yes, I ran in circles pulling my clothes off and rushed for cold water and antihistamine. It took days for the swelling to recede. No message here. Just Bees.
This past week I was stopped by two cars and one woman who lived on our road. Each prefaced the encounter with, “I see you walking every morning. Did you know that a bear was spotted by the curve in the road near your driveway and again just by the woods on this road?” The woman showed me a photo of the large bear. She cautioned me to bring a stick. I asked if I could run inside her home If I needed to. We laughed. The Bear didn’t scare me too much. What did cause me pause and a sense of well-being was the realization that my private walks were watched by the entire neighborhood. Be Ware, I’m not incognito.
Our blueberry bush has had three pickings thus far. And, still the birds have stayed in abeyance. The first picking was with my long, lost friend Susanne. We passed a week together reconnecting. Doing what we used to do in our early thirties. I realized that each of us had remained the same, that our essence was unaltered, even after horrific hardships. Our memories sustain us in tough times. We hold onto the blueberry crisp crumbles hot out of the often, a beacon of a time of joy from long ago. Our taste buds, our enjoyment and love can keep us whole, even as we are worn down. Susanne, be who you are, and I will be who I am.
Bamboo grows faster than horsetails. I admire the gumption, persistence, and long roots. The one in our front yard, grows tall, but I find shoots everywhere. The dark pointy sticks poke out from the green grass, far from its source. I snip them with the mower or clippers. Jim pulls the long roots unraveling the underworld of connectivity. I hold my unkind thoughts and reframe my intolerance to the pokey points that disturb my lawn. Be Kind, for there is more to the story than meets your eyes.
The other evening, I attended a fundraiser. I went to calm my nerves, to find a sense of purpose in a crowded field of negativity. What I found was a down to earth representative who understood his role in government. He dressed in keeping with the locals, he focused on his committee work which was to keep the country safe. He listened to all attendees, gave of his time. Offered opinions, but his message to me was to Be In-sync. To do this he didn’t push an agenda, just worked on principles. He showed by his dress, talk, actions, and performance, that he understood all sides. He was willing to hold himself and the country accountable. His mantra encompassed a gentle, but firm belief in the people he represented, not just those that elected him.
The question I pose to myself, is how will I, who treasures my individuality, my specialness, my views, and my privacy be in-sync with others? How do I move to understand my environment and those living with and near, so that I share the space and stay focused on my work of living a full life?
Said more simply how can I be in-sync with those that are different and still be me? Let me know your thoughts at www.abberolnick.com.
The Magic of Words
Thanks to Wordsmith.org and A.Word.A.Day with Anu Garg, I have received for the last twelve years in my in-box a “word” with pronunciation, meaning, etymology, and usage. I must confess that the words eek into my brain and sometimes into my stories. Here are two words that struck me as noteworthy:
MEANING: noun.: The amount of freedom to do something: margin or latitude.
ETYMOLOGY: In nautica terminology, leeway is the sideways drift of a ship to leeward (away from the wind). From Old English hleo (shelter) +way. Earliest documented use: 1669.
MEANING: Noun: 1. A small stream. 2. A narrow groove carved by erosion.
ETYMOLOGY: From Dutch ril or Low German Rille (groove). Ultimately from the Indo-European root rei- (to flow or run), which also gave us run, rival, derive, and runnel. Earliest documented use: 1552
I trembled with fear and cold, standing on the rill, that left little leeway of movement. For the route of the stream had gouged the banks, and each step left me with little wiggle room. I took a leap of faith and grabbed a tree branch and climbed to safety.
If you lead, I’ll follow
If you follow, who will lead?
I can scout above.
And I can scout below.
Sky view, land view
Together on the water.
Over the years, I’ve distilled my giving down to two main causes: Health and education. Without either a person doesn’t thrive.
This week I attended the Anacortes Art Festival
Jim and I attend each year, amazed at the talent an innovation of the area. I bumped into two of my favorite local artists. Alfred Currier and Ann Schreivogl
Ann and I talked about illustration as well as non-profit work. She is working behind the scenes to make life better for those that are seeking asylum, as well as supporting migrant students seeking further education. She suggested the following organization for those interested in these matters.
Immigrant Resources and Immediate Support, IRIS. They sponsor one or two families at a time by providing them with basic needs and, where appropriate, connecting them with additional services.
I’ve been quite this month. But on September 14th at 10:00 AM, you can find me at the Sumas Library, 451 W 2nd St., Sumas, WA. You can find out more at www.wcls.org or by calling 360-988-2501.
I’ll talk on the topic: Writing to become an Author: The Art of Story Telling.
Please let your writing and reading friends know. I’ll discuss behind the scenes of stories and how they are developed.
Writing and Reading World
Feeling challenged is an understatement, as I continue my journey creating a children’s book. If it was easy, I probably wouldn’t have tried. Most picture book authors are also illustrators. While my home is filled with art and music, I have zero acuity toward drawing or painting, and my deep voice isn’t matched to the ability to stay on tune. Ditto for sewing.
In my quest to discover an illustrator, I discovered many by going to the library, I contacted a few, but the well- known are too busy to work with a novice. My next attempt will be to join the Society of Children Book Writers and Illustrators, https://www.scbwi.org. Many of the great illustrators started here.
For those looking for a great children’s book, check out www.richardjessewatson.com. His style is one that I’d love to use in my work on Bubbie’s Magical Hair. He lives in Port Townsend, WA. He is busy working on two large projects for other authors and will soon embark on his own books.
Founding Stones is out for review. Once this step is completed, we move to production and marketing.
Recently I discovered a gentleman that not only is part of the writing world but has a blog that talks of business and the nature of humanity. I enjoy his insights which leave me with much to ponder. You can find him at https://seth’sblog.
In my last newsletter, I reviewed the Great Pretenders by Laura Kalpakian. I was remiss in not supplying her website address. Here it is, www.laurakalpakian.com.
Becoming, by Michele Obama sits by my bedside. I borrowed it from the Central Skagit Library and will have to return it in two weeks. Stay tuned for my thoughts.
Inspiring thoughts from others, that move me to action. Here are two thoughts that caught my eye.
Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race
~ H. G. Wells, writer
(1866 – 1946)
Nothing is so impenetrable as laughter in a language you don’t understand
~ William Golding, novelist, playwright, poet, Nobel Laureate
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