Showing posts from January, 2013

My Patagonia

A Room with a View Well, it has been raining for two days here in sunny Phoenix, Arizona.  Rain does to Phoenix what the snow does to the Northeast -- lots more accidents as cars hydroplane on oil and rain slicked roads (apparently oil builds up over time and when the rain comes -- watch out!).   So, I've been holed up in the Hyatt Place Hotel in Mesa, AZ while the intrepid Nancy B makes art. Lake View Seems like as good a time as any to write about a trip to Patagonia that I took a couple of years ago particularly given that a friend recently asked about it.  It was the second leg of a journey that started on Easter Island which I wrote about in  My Rapa Nui .  I can remember a Chilean man at the hotel on Rapa Nui reprimanding me for choosing Patagonia over  Atacama .  His theory was that I could see the Rockies in North America, why go all the way to Patagonia to see mountains that looked the same?  I didn't quite have an answer to that at the time but now I do.  A

Road Trip Slices

Grey Skies, Red Rocks It's January 25, 2013 and I'm sitting in Mesa, AZ having not done much of anything today.  I had big plans for this day -- one of two in Mesa with nothing on the agenda as the intrepid Nancy B (aka the B) makes art elsewhere in the hotel.   I was so torn between going to the Grand Canyon, Tombstone, and a day at the spa that I ended up with nothing planned.  Sometimes the best days are spent sitting on a couch watching old episodes of CSI and Law & Order: Special Victims unit while puttering around on my computer.  The only thing missing is a nap (but there is still time for that left in the day). After a few days puttering around in San Diego (that included a whale watching tour with whale sightings from afar), the B and I set out for points east in California and Arizona. Skechers Our first --and unplanned-- stop was at the gigantic Skecher's distribution center and factory store.  It's something like 1.8 million square feet

Asking Questions

Contrast A long time ago (circa 2001), as I was finalizing paperwork at the nursing home where my aunt had lived out the last years of her life, the social worker looked at me and said something along the lines of “no matter what people say, you were always her advocate.”  I’ve always thought that was a polite translation of “you’ve been the bane of our existence for the past several years because you questioned just about everything we did and you often made decisions that we didn’t agree with because you thought it was what your aunt would want.” This story is from before I knew much about caring for older adults.  It’s from when I was the relative living closest to my aunt and fell into caregiving like Alice tumbling down the rabbit hole.  It’s from a long time ago and the landscape is definitely changing as the idea of person-centered, person-directed care gains a toehold.  At that time in my life I worked at a major medical center.  I was armed with an army

365 Jackets in Search of the Perfect Pair of Pants

Conservatory Garden Mums: After the Storm Among my life goals is to have 365 jackets to wear when I am in assisted living.  I guess another goal would be to be able to afford to be in assisted living but I’ll stick with the jackets for today. A secondary goal is to have seasonal variations of the perfect pair of black pants to wear with those jackets.  Pants that suit my figure perfectly, that are the right length, and that go well with what I suspect will be a really comfy pair of shoes with a good, thick, non-skid sole.  I already have an insert due to the arthritis in my big left toe.  Full-blown orthopedic shoes can’t be far behind.  I know exactly the perfect pair of black pants.  I have multiple pairs in my closet as I write this.  They are Eileen Fisher wide leg black trousers with a yoked waist in washable stretch crepe.  No pockets.  No zipper.  They hang perfectly.  And they are OH SO comfortable and impervious to wrinkles.    They also appear to