Friday, September 05, 2008

Still Holed Up in Missouri, Watching the Hurricanes

One thing about being a lover of reality is, it's incumbent on us to truly understand what we're like inside. Who we really are.

That's hard to do. Harder to do it without flinching, of course. But just like a technique from our high school creative writing class, it helps if one starts with the positive critiques before heading to the negative ones. There's nothing wrong with knowing what you're good at, and what's good about your own character. In fact, I'd argue there's plenty wrong with being deliberately blind to any of one's attributes.

Another? If we think about it, most observations about ourselves are, or should be, neutral. Who cares if I love broccoli and someone else hates it? I hate it when everyone is all alike. How boring! But it's surprising how often people take differences of taste or opinion as judgmental - whether they're the ones saying *I don't like broccoli,* or hearing *I don't like broccoli.*

This happens to me more than I wish. I choose my words with care, but people are sensitive, and words are too easily misunderstood. In mentioning some difference between us, it makes me sad when it's misinterpreted as criticism, as words or thoughts I never said or intended.

Of course, if someone says *How can you EAT that stuff?!? that is SO disgusting!* - or even, in an irritated voice, *Why do you eat broccoli, anyway?,* I don't think we'd be in error to perceive that as judgmental. Yuck.

So I'm sitting here holed up in Missouri, sickness pinning me down in the room and mostly in the bed, watching our hurricanes go by back home. As much as I love to travel, I get homesick.

Now why in the world are these blasted hurricanes making me homesick?


I think I love hurricanes best when I'm there for them.

When they run around somewhere else, they aren't nearly as fun. They can even upset me. As blogson SeaPhoenix pointed out, it's the glorious power of nature I admire, not the harm it causes people. Seems like those furriner hurricanes make me notice the harm.

After Katrina, which did cause some damage in my little Ft. Lauderdale-area town, we didn't talk much about our own hurricane problems. Except among ourselves. The damage we took from Katrina, in context with New Orleans, was nothing; and we didn't want to hear ourselves complaining one tiny bit about what we experienced, except a little between ourselves. Privately, among family, if you will.

I drove through the eye of Katrina, coming home from ferrying supplies up to Walter when he'd parked his rig in Vero Beach, then was ordered out of Florida by his employer. Barreling home at 80 MPH, the hurricane picked up my car and put it halfway into the next lane - and me, I kept shooting pix out the windshield the whole way. Shooting blind. heh! Fun.

When Wilma dropped the trees on my roof I was still live-blogging the hurricane. The trees didn't come all the way through the roof, or through my home office window, so that was all right. But five minutes later I was nearly decapitated when the other home office window blew, and the glass flew right by my left ear. Lucky for me, the big ancient TV parked in front of the window stopped the glass that would have taken my head off. Saved by a TV.

I got some injuries, that one. And I've realized since then that there's some lingering PTSD in me from Wilma. That's life; I can deal with it. But like everyone else, I can't deal with it if I don't understand it's there.

Emails and comments arrive from folks saying how glad I must be to be out of Florida just now, out of the hurricanes' paths. So they must be people who feel that way themselves, see? Being away would be happier for them, that's how their taste or needs run. So I do appreciate those well-wishes; they're kind, and kindly meant.

But we're all different.

So here I am, stuck in this hotel room, watching these very interesting hurricanes pass me by...and Lord above, do I feel cheated!

TS Fay, making its record four landfalls, doing a twirly loop around Florida. I love the weird ones. Hurricanes have a mind of their own, they go where and how they want to. Forwards, backwards, sideways. Hah! Upside down.

Gustav. I'm so glad it did as little damage as it did. I'm so disappointed I didn't get to sit at home, safely far from the eye, but smack dab in its huge trails, watching the wind thrash my trees around. And now TS Hanna would be fun the same way, although it's not nearly as majestic.


This newest one, Ike, is still pretty far out. It's too early to pinpoint its path. But it's a big one, Cat 4 already, and Walter's been thinking it might come visit us at home.

As of tonight, late Thursday night, it's turned enough west to point the center of the cone right at Ft. Lauderdale, making landfall around a week from today.

If that's the case, we'll be heading home, whether Walter's worker's comp case is finalized or no.

So I'm going to make sure we have some fun here in the next few days. The pollen count is starting to drop. The leg infection is still getting better. And there's neat stuff to do out here before we leave.

There's a lot more to this Missouri business than you might think.


Joyce Ellen Davis said...

Can't believe Walter's case is still not resolved! Sorry you are missing all the excitement at home--if you decide to go on back before the next one hits, drive carefully! (I know you will). I went back and looked at all your hurricane pics this morning....scary!

Glad you are feeling better!

Did I tell you Marv has four (4) kids on his route this year? It takes him about 2 hours total, and he gets paid for 4 hours. Not too bad!

Pretty Lady said...

I CAN believe it's still not resolved. There's nothing like a soulless corporate entity for dragging its heels when it's a question of having to pay for somthing.

Sorry you're missing the hurricanes, too! They sound like fun.

I've been meaning to ask--are you taking extra Vitamin C for your leg infection? Vitamin C helps immensely in the healing process, and also with allergies. People who get intravenous Vitamin C drips during and after surgery heal much faster than those who don't.

Pretty Lady said...

Oh, and I apologize if you've been assaulted by hordes of rabid Vitamin C proselytizers in the past. I do know that you're always on top of things that help your health. I'm just being a worrywart.

k said...

Joyce, that's great about Marvin. It sounds so ideal to me. Peaceful work, gets you out of the house and doing something Productive, but not having to work 70-hour weeks to do it...

Walter, though - If he can't wear a seat belt, there's no commercial driving he can do at all. And it looks like he's going to get worse, not better, over time. I just put up a post about it - he's finally been diagnosed.

Now it looks like we may be home for Ike. He's just too big and strong and unpredictable to take a chance on him. So I may be in for some hurricane fun after all.

Don't want to *sit out* the whole season!

Oh - and, there's lots more hurricane pix if you like that sort of thing. I posted each pic as a separate post back then. Katrina's in August, and Wilma's in the October and November archives. That was a wild ride I took through Katrina's eye.

Pretty Lady, I am a HUGE Vitamin C advocate for treating allergies, arthritis, and healing - especially bruises. Right now I'm trying to go for at least 4-5 grams a day, up from my 1-2. The acid issue is the only problem with me. The buffered solutions have calcium, which my blood tests showed I have too much of.

It's a bit complicated. But I have so much good to say about Vitamin C, I'd like to write an entire post on it.

And BTW - you can advise, prod, proselytize, harass, or otherwise *bug* me any day of the week about any thing to do with health and healing. Ever. Always.

You know your business. You have a great gift in that way, and I am nothing but thrilled to benefit from it.