Growth Opportunities

Life is full of those, isn’t it, Gentle Reader?  I get what seem to be perhaps More Than My Share .  The most recent thing of relative import? I’m allergic to goats.  This I learned when two baby ones leapt off my landlady’s porch (during another landmine evading trip to pay the rent),  on to me, wrapping their front and hind legs around, respectively, my neck and waist and my waist and ankles, and gave me goat kisses.  Which are interesting.  And produce sneezing.  And their hair is VERY scratchy. I did not fall down, to my credit, and all three of us eventually recovered our composure.   It also seems we have another Pope, the ice caps are indeed still melting apace, and Chico State University which is somewhat near us (and had given me a (faint) (unrealized) hope of perhaps a decent bookstore) has not yet made a decision on whether or not to hold required classes on Fridays.  This would be in an effort to stop the binge drinking that apparently begins Thursday afternoon and goes until Sunday.  A student was quoted as saying it would be “stupid” to have class on Friday.  Because no one would go.  Oh.  Kay.  A rousing afternoon yesterday of pulling weeds and removing hornworm pupae from our garden soil pile preparatory to Another Magnificent Planting Season distracted me from the challenges of going out in the world to some extent, which was a good thing.  There seems to be more cognitive dissonance than one can really handle all the time and pulling weeds is very restorative, after all.  Even the illusion of accomplishment is comforting and at times I think that’s all it is anyway.  I mean: the weeds WILL be back.

I also completed Online Traffic School, which was not without features of interest- the instructions for the course consisted largely of admonitions not to do the class in a bar or with a cocktail.  (I was sitting with two special needs ladies one of whom had an active tambourine- I figured that didn’t quite reach the level of cocktail exposure.)  There was a LOT of stuff about road rage and avoiding eye contact with enraged or seemingly insane fellow drivers (and how you figure THAT out, I do not know- insane or not, I mean).  Still, I did learn a lot about speed limits (!!) and also probably the real reason people still talk on their mobiles while driving here, even though it is in theory against the law.  It’s only a $50 ticket, and $20 for succeeding violations.   Not, as we see every time we’re driving, all that deterring.  Apparently for those who continue to use hand held sets and talk and text and all that while whizzing down the road at a speed that makes any collision more than equivalent to jumping out of a third story window (see? I learned ALOT), the possibility that you could kill or maim someone else, someone you don’t even know,  doesn’t matter at all either.  Certainly not $50 worth.  Ah, human life.  Precious, right?  I especially enjoy a feature of our roadways here, which is regularly being almost smashed to smithereens by a car covered with Jesus bumper stickers and Christian homilies while the person is chatting on the phone obliviously.  (Probably with their Pastor, but still.) This isn’t the do unto others I usually think about, let’s just say.

Meanwhile there are lovely trails leading back into the hills with flowering wild cherry trees lining their sides, and the buttercups are out.  The birds are coming back, hopping around in our garden like they’re all greeting old friends. There are new little lizards, and some of the splendid graphite-looking big ones, too.  One day instead of losing my mind altogether I took my magnifying glass up on the bluff and looked at all the tiny, tiny, new wild flowers and changing mosses, and the spectacular manzanita blossoms this year.  Today the morning sky was the same creamy pink shade as their flowers.  It was pretty amazing, and looked as though it went on forever.  Which, in a way, it does.



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