Thursday, December 28, 2017

2017 road in summary

Year in summery:

Before I begin about my year, this has been a terrible year for many people I know; too many people, we do not stand alone, and I can never say thank you enough for the continuing love and support from my family and friends and complete strangers I have had the honour of knowing.

January 2017, the ticking clock, although we all know it's there, hearing it for the one you love is a whole different matter.  It was loudest at night, when the world went quiet.  

Franco of course heard it the loudest and was why he needed the tv on, the light... needed to hear life, not the silence that brings with it too much internal noise, clatter, words... unfinished thoughts ideas wants and broken dreams.

February and March hospital, pain, pain and pain... Franco told me in his last days, laying in Malaga hospital, that he did not want to suffer any more, and he didn't want me to either...

Nearly nine months, and writing these words I am still suffering; I bet any one of you, I could write this in twenty years, God willing and the tears will flow as they are now writing these words... It is grief, I now know one doesn't move on from grief exactly, one has to learn to live with it, to live differently, it is what it is.

May through to December... Time with family and friends, home and home, and home! Lol three countries... and work, three placements, a total of eleven weeks worked; two days of flying and a week in departures! Lol

(I know I have written this already since I penned this.)

I am writing this December 18th on flight number 18! Returning back to Malaga from a weekend with Barry and his family, Tony and Kate came up for lunch Saturday...

I was adamant I would never leave Spain back in April, May... by June I couldn't imagine living there surrounded by ghosts of the lost, I swung continually like a pendulum, like in the movie! The pit and the pendulum, because each time it swings, I feel the blade, it's cold and sharp and makes deeper and deeper cuts with each swing, and from changing the tenses even in writing now the pendulum swings its heavy weight through my heart and mind...

My December trip to Cali decided me further... America land of my birth! I'm coming home! Got back and two days later woke up thinking I am out of my mind! How can I leave Spain!

The pros and cons list is undeniable! In favour of staying in Spain, of course!
I've even put a question poll on Twitter just now, results will follow! 86/14 were the results, in favour of staying in Spain.

I feel a bit empty at this thought now, but really!!! If I'd gone back home instead of Spain maybe back in 2002... but now!?! I know everyone knows (thinks), I am strong minded, and won't listen to a word anyone else says, but really people! Would you have let me go?

Or will I still go!?! I'm like two people, with two minds and stuck in the middle of someone's giant tug of war game, only its my tug of war! And I'm at either end, on a regular daily basis!

And the realisation of the fact that actually I might never live back in the states makes me feel a bit sick... and I have to tell myself it doesn't mean I can't stay there for long visits, or numerous trips... it doesn't mean never, it just means... it's too late.  We never think we'll reach the 'too late' stage do we? I'm too young for a 'too late' but maybe its only this I'm too late for, the living and working there... certainly not for the rest of my life...

Of course I have only to look into the eyes of my granddaughter and know the truth... and Pippa! Really, how could I leave my fur-baby...

And back now to the here and now that I am posting this, as I read through, make corrections and add-ons... As I reach that last paragraph a heavy weight descends down to the pit of my stomach.

But, there is light now in my world, there is laughter and positive thoughts... Every day I still have that moment where I still think bad thoughts, but no-one can live in that moment and survive.

So I am looking at Pippa, laying asleep on the floor, we went out for a late morning walk, she refused to earlier, and this is the first walk she has had since the day before yesterday...

Heading now for the end of this year, and there is no stopping it!

Monday, December 25, 2017

How many roads...

Christmas Day!

Getting through, yesterday walked the Pipster, tried to later but she refused, due to some idiot down the road was letting off rockets, what joy he found I cannot imagine, simple joy for a simple... Well! You get the gist!

I spoke with him, and he let off another... Karma will catch up with him one day...

Anyway, the day passed quickly enough in the grand scheme of things, as will today, and all back to normal tomorrow!

It wasn't even cold enough to light the fire, so see how it goes today!

Bit empty of words today, I had saved something for some reason and was emptying out so will post it here and be done.

It's a song by the way.

By Mark Cohn

How many roads you've traveled
How many dreams you've chased
Across sand and sky and gravel
Looking for one safe place

Will you make a smoother landing
When you break your fall from grace
Into the arms of understanding
Looking for one safe place

Life is trial by fire
And love's the sweetest taste
And I pray it lifts us higher
To one safe place

How many roads we've traveled
How many dreams we've chased
Across sand and sky and gravel
Looking for one safe place

Thursday, December 21, 2017

The Lost Road...

Me and Pip today...

I have found recently, some things can be lost, and never regained... A feeling, need or want even, a thought of future things, ideas... and when you realise they can never come to fruition it stops! A barrier comes down... And however much you might try to get the hope or idea back it's impossible... Something kills it, outright, and as my phone said ahead of me there... Also out of reach...

I went to Fuengirola this morning, bright and very early; I sat at Bar Central where I have sat now for nearly 29 years, lol not continually! Bright spark! On and off! They'd have moved me on by now...

At first on holidays, and the latter 16 living here, mostly, of course...

So many years...

The bar hasn't changed much... The shop opposite gone, another bar there now instead, the King Burger still there, yes that's it's name, not to be confused with another similar brand name! It's near the steps towards Las Rampas...

I parked way back, at the other end of town, walked along through the hardly changed high street, although in retrospect I guess it has changed, but we change too and don't notice so much.

After my Colacao, with its little cheeky bubbles! I headed down through Las Rampas and out onto the paseo maritimo, walked along by the sea... Beautiful blue sky above, sun on my left... Warm enough in the sunshine... Back to the car and back up to Alhaurín... Parked at home, my spot was waiting for me patiently! And I walked into town, had a chat with friends and came home!

Pipster and I have been out for our walk, photographic evidence!

This small building always makes me wonder!! The door is well below ground! So how? Why? What? When???

                         Rotting pomegranates!

Its nicer in the afternoons now, less heat than summer, and more light than the morning walk in the dark at the moment! And warmer! Contradictory lines there? But you get the gist!

The wood burner is lit... and that's it!

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Christmas road... Lights and baubles...

Great weekend with my family in Nottingham, over too fast especially arriving late Friday and leaving early Monday morning! Although I saved time not having a bag in the hold I must have just missed a bus and had to wait about 45 minutes for the next one! It was freezing! Literally! And dark and a bit creepy! Few people about, I did check  on taxi prices, but at nearly £50.00 it was a NO!! 

After so many different time changes and temperature changes this was the worse!! Saturday Tony and Kate came up for lunch in the city centre, we went to Chiquitos, food was good, but we had a short wait, seemingly all the longer for being so hungry!

Sunday evening we went to an outdoor Christmas music concert at the Arboretum, the band undercover inside the bandstand, it's only open at the front and glazed around the rest...

It was dark, a slight wetness in the air, the plastic chairs were wet, it was damp and cold... And we all had a really great time! Two women on stilts dressed in silvery white made massive bubbles all evening, with hoops and things! Which made more of an impact on the children than the music I think! Especially when trying to pop them! Causing small mini showers each time!

And suddenly Monday! I got the same tram as Barry, getting off at the station, slipping and sliding on the icy path to the bus stop, looking worriedly as to which stop was mine the bus came! And an hour later I was at the airport, and in the departure lounge, again! And coffee!! I've got so professional now at security, fluids of course in their bag, but I also put all my electricals in a bag too, tipping them out into a box separating them out! Saves that last minute trying to get them all out of my bag, or trying to balance them in my arms with coat, boots, carry-on bag and fluids!!!

Then for some reason I started looking around the shops, I haven't bought anything in all these departure outlets all year! Apart from chocolate maybe and water! Thankfully! Well I think this 18th departure caught me off guard! And it was "um, smart little purse! 30% off!" And then more off at the till! £14.50 ✓ Then, in another shop ... "Oh, I like that! One left, my size! And 70% off! Would be so rude not to!" So I did!! £12.90 ✓ Lol. Finishing it off by purchasing a Bluetooth headset on board!! No discount! ✓?

My pre-ordered food was great both ways, never done that before either! So nice just being brought the food and coffee, ahead of everyone else too! I'm sure they do it to get other people to order! The two men either side of me on return flight, both got hungry smelling the Moroccan meal I was enjoying! Chocolate pudding and cheese and biscuits! Oh bread roll and butter!! 

Yesterday I went to Miramar on the coast, for coffee! Above! Wasn't really for just coffee, but turned out that way, first on the list was dropping off my broken suitcase then I was buying wood and going to Aldi...

Where I usually drop off big items the truck was there!  Then coming up to the wood merchant the sun visor fell off completely! Catching me on my right wrist... Missed the turn! So with a big case and no wood I thought I'd skip this Aldi and just go for coffee! And paid €1.60 for the privalige of a small cup of coffee with a handle too small to actually be able to safely hold!

I wandered briefly around the shops and supermarket but after Mondays whirlwind shopping spree at the airport I decided against lingering long in there!

So I drove back up into the safety of my mountains... Bought my wood from my old seller, dumped the case, bought the groceries from Aldi in Coín... And back to Alhaurín and more coffee! In the sun! Check out my bruise!! A week ago today the dentist, the bruise appeared Saturday!?! 

Today, waking up early, thinking where to go today... Fuengirola? Malaga? I'm searching... I think for Christmas, as usual, at this time of the year, and maybe this year more than ever... It's the little girl in my heart, still searching for the elusive magical Christmas...

I have seen good Christmases, I know, a few... But the lead up to Christmas always makes me search for that something else... I know what it is, I've said it before, and I told my brother recently... At Christmas I always hoped my dad would come for me, come to see me, anything, I just wanted my dad.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

There is no such thing as a mistake; there is what you do, and what you don't do.

So many times I come here to write, to express my feelings, my fears... My dreams... I either say too much or never enough...

I leave you with words written between the lines of my ramblings... words I'm thinking or thoughts I'm feeling...

Words of wanting to change things, to move, to stay, to live here... to live elsewhere... I flutter between one place and another constantly... Long before I moved here I ordered information about relocating back to the US... I still have the brochures they sent me, back in the early 80's... Thankfully, that didn't happen of course; the course of so many people's lives although unknown, would be so very different...

Everything is meant to be as it is now.

I'm not saying that's where I want to fly to now... to flee... To make such a drastic action, to be so daring... To risk so late so much, yes, at my age...

I have important reasons for staying here, very important reasons!

But a month ago the reasons were invisible to me...

And on my last evening in LA I randomly put my resume on a local job site; I have five companies wanting to hear from me; within hours my resume had been checked out numerous times, and continues to be so.

They know where I am now, and await me to return their calls!

I know noone can make my decisions... Lol but I wish someone would!

If we don't risk something we risk everything.

Saturday, December 09, 2017

I ordered some really cool hair gel.... saw the advert on Facebook, yes really I did!  It came when I was away working, I thought I had ordered purple and green, bu purple and gray came, and that was what I had  ordered, I checked!  Anyway, its beautiful, and so easy to apply, only problem was I hadn't realised the intensity of the color until today in H&M and their brighter than white light in the changing room.... and I jumped when I saw the color in my hair! Lol... the purple, its purple!!

They have the Christmas decorations in Miramar now, just enough, nothing to in-your-face... It was nearly eleven, but still quite quiet... it was nice being able to wander around without getting knocked to the ground by busy shoppers!

Today the weather is typical December in Spain, warm in the sunshine, cool in the shade = house, a strong wind a blowing... in the garden centre I bought a couple of poinsettias and trees were falling all over the place in there... a friends car in the car park also, but after searching I think he may have been using the lot as a waiting zone for a few hours!!

This photograph is way cooler on my Facebook page! It actually pans around! Lol...

Pippa is back in her two walks a day routine, the short run first thing and the longer walk later on... she had got into the habit of barking to go out in the middle of the night, so tonight I will have to take her up onto the terrace and wait with her, before bedtime! Its okay in the summer with the door open anyway, but this has to stop!

You know I have had had two conversations today that were out of this world... and makes me wonder if people actually think before they speak!  I know I can be maybe, outspoken? Have strong opinions? But the two things I can't write here blew me away! Thoughtless, unthinking... mmmm well, okay they're the same thing! And me not actually being able to write them down here isn't of any value, sorry!

Well, I could ramble here about things in my head; plans, possibilities, and then reality and... Pippa....

And oh I really wish I was dancing right now!  Just like two weeks ago in Palm Springs! What an amazing night! Absolutely fabulous!

Add caption

This restroom was the funniest!  My sister-in-law and I waited until it was vacated by two giggly people, and we giggled in there too, until we giggled our way out!

Thursday, December 07, 2017

Super Moon in So.Cali

Sundays super moon... Not so huge from where I was then... Looking out from my families terrace...
Was it magical? Did something happen unexpected? Yes and no I guess...

Was a strange weekend, can the moon influence us at all really? The moon belongs to my star sign, so I claim it! Along with everyone born under the same...

This just looks like a white globe... tiny little blimp on the edge is all....

I am back to my normal now I think!  Went to bed late last night, must have nearly 1am... then awake for a few hours again in the night, I read a while... changed my alarm to another half hour, then as I stayed awake I moved it twice more, eventually it went off at 8:30am, and got up then, walked the Pip after breakfast and then went to town, had a coffee at the bar with friends, then into the shop and had coffee and a sandwich... thank you! Before going to the supermarket for some real food!

Its colder here than normal, I am sure? It seems strange coming back here and feeling colder than where I have been!  But sunny warm Cali was warmer days and nights than Andalucia just now! It was 8 degrees when I got up this morning, and in the campo word was it was lots less and people had a frost on the car to scrape!! That doesn't happen here in town, or at least here!

The cupboard here in the living just made a noise, its done that now a while! Like the wood is groaning, it did it in the night, it is so quiet in this house at night, I think I need to play some kind of back ground stuff for the nights, it makes it hard to sleep in the silence...  more so because the noise in my head is so loud!!

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Roads back to Spain...

Long time of travelling... See if I can get things straight...

Fish & Chips at Sandys, Huntington Beach
I left LAX late, an hour, luckily had my phone on charge at the gate most of the time, you know there, as most US airports charger sockets are on every row of seats at the gates, with the possibility of charging four devices at a time!

We eventually boarded, and I was sat at the window with two Spanish guys next to me, who after a while of listening to them speaking I was sure they would be on my next flight also, to Malaga... we talked here and there a little, more for help in passing stuff and a bottle it was impossible for me to open!

The flight was great, these 787 Dreamliner babies that Norwegian Air are flying long haul, are the very best, amazing lighting to help with sleep and jet lag, maybe, apparently something different with the air conditioning too, to help with jet lag... comfortable, huge windows with no blinds to pull down, just a tap of a button to adjust the incoming light, I stared at the sun for ages yesterday[?] morning, then realised it was the sun!! Still, looked amazing over the silver side of the clouds...

Anyways, landed in Gatwick, and although an hour late taking off, with great tailwinds we landed on time!  So after immigration and bag collection, which took a while.. It was the shuttle tube thingy from the south terminal to the north and I self checked in my bag with Easy Jet, again, so easy, done that before at Stansted a couple of years ago... only problem, just remembered I had to get off all the stickers from my other flight before the case would clear! Oh these multi fly trips! Haha!!

Into another departures after another security check through... I didn't notice, but my case had been opened in the states, always me, always my case... so another lock broken, and my bits and pieces are checked through!  Really? Why mine?  Good thing the built in code thing hadn't been used, not sure how they would open that!!  The case is shot to hell anyway, busted up on the flight over I think, cracked and broken, I had used duck-tape to stop the sharp areas catching and breaking further... maybe they thought that looked a bit dodgy!

And so... onto Malaga from Gatwick and that left late, but also managed to land on time, off, through security, baggage collection... car collection, Pippa collection and into the house... before ten, just I think...

I unpacked everything, but left it in piles, the little there was, tried to relax, luckily I had some coffee with built in milk powder and chocolate!  Watched TV and went to bed about midnight...  Oh we also did a tour of the terrace, all okay up there!  It took me ages to get the boiler working, not sure if it was the gas can, it was full, but I changed it over anyway, and will try it again when this one is empty...

I woke up about 3am, ended up getting up, making some chamomile tea, thought it would help, although of course, I would have had coffee if I had had some milk! I read and went back to sleep about 5am ish... I switched off the 7am alarm thinking I would probably wake up about 8am... er no! Pippa didn't budge, I was warm and cosy in the duvet, bed cover, and then two blankets... bed felt damp when I got into it... The house smelled fine, clean and not damp, like in the old days... so I knew it wasn't bad, just chilled I guess... And I woke up just before 2pm!!!! OMG!!! 2pm!! 

I rushed and got ready went out... I had completely forgotten it was a holiday day here today! Nothing open as I drove about... I went to two garages for milk, the second getting lucky! Back to the house and then I took Pippa out! 

She is a bit strange, I guess it feels strange for her... being in the doggie hotel for ten weeks, and although she was excited to see me, which was good, I think it must seem funny now her being here, and on her own without her doggie pals she has been used to for all these weeks... she snuggled up on the bed with me... but this house, just isn't the same anymore, I don't know about Pippa, but I don't feel I belong here anymore, I don't feel at home... my heart has left here now; I couldn't even bear to look across the valley earlier, towards the wind turbines.. to the range that has always reminded me of California, because now more than ever before they remind me of the home I was born in, and I know now more than ever before looking across will make me sad now, not happy.

I was going to put up the tree today, or at least this week.
Shall I? should I bother? whats the point... For me? for Pippa? I think this year Christmas can pass on by, bring on 2018...

From Fat Face
I Tweeted this pic yesterday from Gatwick, waiting for my flight to Malaga... Another mug, another quote... Seems so long ago back in Malaga taking a similar photo... that quote said.. "You can't discover a new ocean until you have the courage to leave the shore."

That's all I'm saying...

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

It is with mixed emotions I am leaving LA, been a wonderful two weeks with my family, there has been a lot more besides, and I am out of my comfort zone!

Things to think about, choices to be made... Life changing maybe.

I am once again feeling on the edge of change, our lives are always changing, but I seem to push mine to its limits or rather beyond, always have...

I am at the gate now... That's a real gate, not a euthnisium for anything! Popular word today!

Monday, December 04, 2017

New Roads to who knows where...

Great night last night, went to Sandie's restaurant in Huntington Beach, it's under Duke's, and beside the pier... We ate, then wandered up the street, stopped and bought chocolate! And salt water taffies! I'm taking them back to Spain with me... They'll be my Christmas treat! My Christmas dinner! Lol... Chocolate and coffee!! Lol

Had a coffee in Duke's, some great live music...

Above our s'mores from the other night, and tonight! Very nice! Crackers, with melted chocolate and melted marshmallows squished inbetween! Yum yum yum!!

Tomorrow I leave here... and I really do not want to leave... I feel home, feel I've been home forever now...