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summer rhapsody

My heart overflowing this glorious morning – we’ve had a few days respite from the heat, it’s fresh, light, clear. The garden is nearly at its peak; the pale mauve phlox are out, delicate and tall, and so is the jasmine, scenting the air. The raspberries are in profusion and the cukes too. It’s quiet, and after a few busy days, I’ve little on today – an editing client coming at 2, that’s it. My own very long list of things to do, of course, including, most importantly, my least favourite job, back to trying to find a home for my memoir.


On Tuesday, a shocking encounter; a woman I’d never met, an old friend of a recently deceased friend, came for coffee and told me that things I’d suspected but did not know for sure about my friend’s living arrangements were true. That he lived, by his own choice, in a near abusive situation. The profound injustice of what happened. It made me sad and angry in equal measure. But when people make their choices, she said, there’s nothing we friends can do. And I know that’s true. Still. There are bad people in this world.

As if we didn’t know that, with the spectacle in the news every single bloody day. Including a nauseating story in the latest New Yorker about the pillorying of Senator Al Franken, victim of the excesses of #Metoo, a principled hardworking man who lost his job for the flimsiest of reasons, while the pussygrabber-in-chief reigns supreme and threatens to obliterate Afghanistan. But stop. The morning is too beautiful to let him in.

Yesterday, a gathering here of runfit friends, the group of us who’ve been going around in circles together on Wednesdays for years, led by our inspiring Carole, the marathon-running grandmother of three adults who looks no more than 50. We had a potluck feast on the deck and got to know each other a bit better, as we have only the briefest of conversations as we puff and sweat. It’s thanks to Carole that we’re all even a little bit fit, though I least of all, the slowest of the bunch. And yet, as we always say in the gym, we’re here. The miracle is, we’re here.

I read somewhere that the main predicator of happiness is the ability to be grateful. I guess that’s why, despite the news, despite Boris Johnson and global warming, despite my own debt and doubt and disappointments, I call myself happy much of the time. Right now, I am grateful for the sweet scent of jasmine and phlox, and much much more.

And now, up to the office, to work.



2 Responses to “summer rhapsody”

  1. theresa says:

    "I read somewhere that the main predicator of happiness is the ability to be grateful." Oh yes. Most mornings I read several newspapers online and often the result is a kind of despair — for our species, for human decency, for the dignity of our political institutions. But then I remember my own particular life, my own small community, and I'm filled with gratitude. Pinch me. I'm happy.

  2. beth says:

    I know, sometimes I feel guilty for my own peace of mind, my roof and full fridge. (Though as you know, there are times when peace of mind is harder to come by!) All we can do in our increasingly nasty and divided world, besides donate money and become involved as volunteers, is to be as kind as possible to our planetmates each and every day. And, yes, to continue to count our many, many blessings. Such blessings for you this week, with all your family together.

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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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