My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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Ben is two

It’s been days since I blogged. Days vanish, I don’t know where. This week, though, I was felled – yet again – by a cold. How is this possible? Pneumonia in January, a kind of flu in Vancouver in April, and now just a running-nose-sore-throat cold. I consulted Dr. Google: “Why am I susceptible to colds?” There were many suggestions to avoid getting sick, but most of them I could dismiss – get sleep, eat well, exercise, God knows I’m pretty good at those; though sleep is not my forte, I at least lie tranquilly in bed and make lists. My new resolution is to wash my hands endlessly and to try not to touch my face and see if that helps. Enough is enough.

Last week was also mammogram time – they gave me an ultrasound too, and when the technician left the room, I photographed the screen – surely, that’s something there, a round black mark they’ve surrounded with blue dots, terrifying.

However – it’s nothing, apparently. I don’t even need to go back in six months, as I did last year. Merci mille fois, to the gods.

When I checked in to the breast imaging clinic at Women’s College, I noticed this sign. You can receive translation into 20 languages, including Armenian and Hmong. Pretty impressive.

Last Ryerson class Wednesday night – a wonderful bunch, including one woman with some of the most powerful and tragic stories I’ve ever heard – and I’ve heard a lot of stories – and a man who tried to convert me to his love of “Star Trek.” I watched the episode he recommended on Netflix and did enjoy it, yes, but a Trekkie I will not become. Thanks to another fine class. Love to you all.

This morning, I watched the last ten minutes of Wimbledon, the spectacular Roger Federer, once more, crowned king, the first man to win eight times, and he’s an old man in tennis. My mother in heaven is ecstatic – she adored Fed, as she called him. Do has been glued to her TV screen for weeks, can now breathe again. Imagine, 35, nearly 36, is old. He’s a Leo, I feel obligated to point out. One of mine.

And then today – well, tomorrow actually but the party was today – a Cancer baby turned two. Anna decided to hold this party at the park down by the lake, even though thunderstorms were predicted. And despite a few sprinkles and glowering clouds, no storm came and the party was, as always, a hit, crowded with cousins and friends, though none of Ben’s own just yet. Two large pizza boxes arrived, delivered right to the park. Here is Ben gazing in wonder at his cake with his cousin Liam; out of view are many other small people lined up for their piece.

 Big brother Eli with his best friend Pema from school

Uncle Sam, who is not a Trekkie either, with his very small nephew.

I am reading “Theft by Finding,” David Sedaris’s diaries, and I must say it’s a strange and sometimes infuriating read. He explains nothing and expresses almost no emotion. His mother dies and he expends as much emotional energy and lines of prose on that event as he does on seeing strange people in the street. Suddenly he has a boyfriend, they’re moving in together, they’re in France, he has a hit play, he has a book out, no context, no titles, no explanation – it drives me crazy. But he is wonderful at noticing and commenting on human absurdity and at transcribing dialogue, a true skill I’d like to cultivate – remembering how people actually speak. “That’s what I was tolt,” one person says to him, and I can see the guy through that perfect word. And it’s good to remember that for years, the renowned David Sedaris cleaned houses for a living. Lots of material in that.

Randy Bachman was on his second radio program devoted to boogie music and what fun that was. And now, in half an hour, “Grantchester.” How will Sidney resolve being a minister with the consummation of his love for a woman to whom he is not married? Will Geordie give up his girlfriend or his family? Delicious. This woman will lie on the sofa under a comforter and relish every minute. A whole hour when I don’t have to think about the destruction and dismemberment of the planet.



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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

Some Blogs I Follow

Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.

Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.

I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.

Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.


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