Winter Morning Music

red and orange solar flare
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Standing under a heater vent blowing 70-degree air on me, I still get goosebumps listening to Ed Sheeran singing “I See Fire” from The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.

Removed we may be from the foothills of Erebor, but we never seem far from the breath of the great drake.

For there are days beneath brown hills, Santannas blowing dry from the Northeast bending the palms and sending crackles of static through hair and wool, when if you listen closely, you can hear the chuckle of the Old Wyrm amidst the howling tempest, and your breath stops, waiting in dread for the ridges to explode in flame.

Mugology: Easing Back into the Classroom

Returning higher education after an absence of over three decades – even when retirement allows me to focus on my studies – demands a  gradual approach. Collegiate study skills are muscles, and atrophy after too many years languishing in the workplace. Dive into a college classroom alongside students fresh from a dozen consecutive years of study, and you are going to be outclassed, and possibly overwhelmed.

I’ve decided to start easing back into the pool with lectures, enrichment style, courtesy of the wonderful folks at The Learning Company, who publish a series of university-level courses aimed at geezers like me under The Great Courses brand. I have now been through a good half-dozen of these, just listening, and I can feel the study-muscles starting to twitch. My next step: taking notes. The step after that: scheduling 3 per week. Finally, I’ll be taking notes, doing three per week, and completing the recommended reading.

By that point, I figure I should be ready to go back to the classroom. Hopefully, that will happen sometime this coming year.

But this post was about a coffee mug, one they sent to me recently, perhaps in recognition of the fact that I’ve purchased so many of their courses.

Perfect Timing

Look what showed up at my door right before I watched Biscuit Week from 2018 of the Great British Bake-Off.

There are no coincidences in the multiverse.

Fixed the Grill

After spending a day cleaning the range and a lump of cash having professional cleaning of the hood and can above it, and then setting off the smoke alarm ten dinners in a row, I decided that it was time to start cooking outside on the grill.

What bliss to be able to sear, brown, and burn food to my heart’s delight without fear of making the whole house smell like a barbecue joint for days afterwards.

Bucket List #489: Short-Term Camp Administrator

I am now officially overqualified to plan and lead a camp-out.

Seriously, though, attending National Camping School not only prepares me to run or oversee huge multi-day events like camporees, it also better equips me to plan and manage complex outdoor activities for our Troop.

I am chuffed as heck. This was a big bucket list item for me.

Achievement Unlocked: Lose 140 lbs.

I had friends, relations, dieticians, and even physicians telling me that without surgery I was doomed to a life of obesity.

I am grateful beyond words that they were all wrong, grateful for the unfailing support of my family, and grateful for the loving help of G-d.

#findyourformula

Achievement Unlocked: Scouter of the Year

It takes a village to form and run a Sea Scout Ship, and I have been privileged over the past two years to work with a village full of heroes. A team of yachtsmen, Coast Guard Auxiliarists, and Navy NCOs who all make me realize how little I know about the sea have made it all possible. It was great to see fellow scouters Marie Edson, Liz Conner, and Jon Conner also recognized for helping bring this program back to Ventura County.

Note the Eagle Scout photobomb…

A Sweet Day

Phase V does not officially begin until midnight on the 31st, but today marks the start of my terminal PTO, so yesterday was the last day in the office in my career. Slammed right up to the last minute, I hadn’t had much of a chance to reflect on or savor the moment.

Then my son came home after a day at Universal Studios with a box full of pure Portland goodness: a half dozen of Voodoo Doughnuts’ most over-the-top creations.

Pacing myself through a vegan apple fritter, I thought quietly about an amazing if somewhat unconventional career. It was a road sparsely traveled, and that did make the difference. As I stepped off that path and onto another, I paused to pray that this new road would be just as scenic.

B”H

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑