Small Animals and Cookies

To me, my life seems rather mundane. I work. I love my cats. I hug my husband. I read, I write. I take pictures. I write some more. I go shopping. I cook. Sometimes I get to travel, sometimes I take more pictures of interesting things. I talk with my friends, I drop in to say hello, and invite them to sit in the hot tub and talk about philosophical ideas, while looking at the brilliant stars. It seems, well, kind of boring.

I do other things, don’t get me wrong. I am a Freemason and have been for 25 years. I have all the degrees. Yes, all of them. That in itself shocks me, but I’ll continue. I travel for that love of Freemasonry, and I help people, hopefully, on their Masonic journey. Much of my writing comes and goes through a Masonic lens. I love to cook and play in the kitchen, and I like to grow herbs and play with making things from them. Music is always high on my likes and listen-tos, as is art of all kinds. A symphony or a ballet? Yes. An art museum or a very cool art opening? Heck, yes. I believe in championing the arts and artists. I am blessed with original works from very talented painters an photographers. I am who I am and I kinda like it. No, I do like it. As Oscar said, “Be yourself. Everyone else is taken.”

I’m coming off a year of weirdness. Caretaker and handling the aftermath of a parental death, a new home, a new job (same company…), and yes, the kicker, menopause. Why say it? So every one of you can either sympathize or groan (I hear you, men. Sympathy for the spouse is acceptable.) No one is more aware of the weirdness and ugliness that can come from that hormonal shift than the woman going through it. Sometimes, it’s a body betraying me. What I knew to be true has fled. Things hurt. Things take longer to do and to heal. I forget the weirdest things. Sometimes, that forgetfulness is helpful in terribly awkward situations. I have no problem admitting I have no idea what someone is talking about now. At least in a personal situation. I care less about the highs and lows that emotions can bring. I get angry a LOT less. A. Lot.

Then, there are the cat videos. And stories of animal rescues. Oh, yes. I can sit for an hour looking at how the human beings of the planet, because it’s everywhere, can be cruel and heartless to creatures that offer them nothing except love. The last one, a dog shot in the face and blinded, put me over the top. Why do I watch them? Hell if I know. Hell. If. I. Know. Is that a Maiden-turning-Crone thing? Maybe it’s a Joan Baez thing – get the hell out and change the world before you can’t any more thing. What I do know is that I do not want to be associated with anyone who has that kind of cruelty. If you can be cruel to something that unconditionally loves you, how do you treat those who might actually, and most probably will, hurt you? I don’t want a life without animals. Torturing myself to watch these rescue videos… I think it keeps me from having my head in the sand about how people can really be.

The world continues and this year is now fraught with family sickness, dealing with trustee and social security issues, that new job growing into a monster, changes in travel, and figuring out how to keep sane in a world that wants anything but your sanity. I am blessed and tired and hopelessly sad at animal videos. At least I’m alive – right?

For a further escape, the new freak is cooking videos. Tasty. Kitchen Stories. It doesn’t matter where they come from. If I feel like I want to run away, I learn how to bake a new type of cookie. Can I eat them? Hell no. Because, you know, aging and blood sugar boojoo, But, I can make 12 dozen for Christmas for friends. Oh, and there are some very good videos out there. Talk about extremes. Learn a life lesson about humanity or cook for it. One of the two, bring it on. I can take it. Killer chicken jalapeño soup or chicken soup for the soul. Matzo balls, no charge.

Please tell me that the world is as weird or normal as me.

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