LifeRing Recovery: a self-help alternative for recovery from alcoholism and other chemical dependency. Group support for abstinence from alcohol and “drugs” by empowering the sober self within you. Completely secular: no prayers, Higher Powers or Steps.
Thank you for your words of encouragement Brian. I am having a minor crisis of confidence in several aspects of my life at the moment.
Ah, the Isle of Skye! I went on holiday there when I was around the age of 10. We rented a cottage attached to a farm and I milked a cow. Blue Peter ( an iconic children's TV programme in the Uk, it's hard to imagine that it might not be world famous!)were doing a Special Assignment there and I went to a crofter's cottage with the farmer's daughter and was filmed pretending to sing songs in Gaelic. Strangely enough it was never televised! The day before we left (day 13 of 14) we discovered that we had a sea view. It had more or less rained for the whole holiday! But I loved it, and am itching to visit the Hebrides again some day, once we haven't got semi-dependent adult children forcing us to go to Greece or Portugal to get a tan. I also have an urge to go to Norway on a camper van trip. Also Ireland, which I have only visited once.
I'm glad you had a good experience of the NHS. I only have one experience of medical treatment in the States- I had a UTI/Kidney infection. Yes it did cost me but I was actually impressed with how seriously they took me and how quickly the relevant tests were made , when here I would certainly have had to wait for a few days for test results, that's if they just didn't send me home with advice to drink more water and stop complaining! My husband does say that over investigation has now become a big problem for the NHS- everyone googles everything and expects every test going, necessary or not. Patients are happy when you over investigate, but its not actually helpful viewed overall as it diverts funds from where they are actually needed. And with a paid service as in the States there is an obvious incentive to over investigate, which is the other side of the coin.
What does your wife play? How wonderful to be proficient and inspired in musicianship. I have barely touched my musical instruments recently- and this is one of my personal crises. Having learnt piano as a child, I stopped at age 13 and then after my dad died and I inherited a smallish but not insignificant sum for someone in their 20s I bought a good piano and over a long period relearnt and then actually improved my standard to reasonable intermediate level. I like to sing and taught myself to play using chord patterns rather than literal notation. 10 years or so ago I was playing a lot- it was a great outlet for some emotional stuff I was struggling with. I also got a ukulele and leant basic playing so I could sing a different style of song. And then, three years ago I decided to have a go at the violin- it is a beautiful instrument and I love to hear it. I got a teacher and to start I was very enthusiastic, making quick progress to very basic playing and nearing Grade 1 standard. but then it gets much harder, the learning curve between basic and intermediate felt like an increasing slog and I totally lost impetus. Not only have I stopped playing the violin but also the piano and the uke. the phrase that comes to mind is that I've 'lost heart.' It makes me sad writing this and contemplating this loss. I am thinking I should sell the violin- it is a 1930 7/8 German violin, not particularly special but nice enough - I chose it and it fits me comfortably as a small adult. It feels hard to sell it, to say goodbye to this little fantasy that as a 50 something I could learn a very challenging instrument. I should have stuck to the piano. I might not improve that much on the piano now but I can play a decent range of music and just playing frequently means I get more fluent at it. But as it stands I just walk by it and don't sit down to play as I used to (I walk by it to get upstairs or to our living room, I used to stop and play even when I wasn't intending to, when I was supposed to be doing something else)
Anyway, I have lots of things I probably ought to be getting on with today, so enough for now. It's very nice to at least express how I feel about it, even if I'm feeling disappointed that those feelings are rather lacklustre.
Have a good week Brian, and thank you again.
My wife plays the recorder - mostly Early Music but some modern things. She plays in several groups and also organizes concerts with visiting professionals. It is a wonderful way to spend her retirement. Unfortunately, I have a completely tin ear so I can't share this with her. But I do love the sound of her practicing, which she often does for several hours a day.
I like the story of finding you had a sea view on the last day - I think it rained every day we were in Scotland - not hard, but a constant drizzle. This is a picture from the hike where my wife broke her finger - we had our lunch watching the clouds pour over this mountain.
Made it in again after days of having trouble with cookies, passwords, date/time. I called in a technician to help and he told me that the reason we talk about bugs in the computer is that in Silicon Valley there was a bug running around live inside a motherboard. A kind of wood louse.
Early spring here, very green but cold.
E, I once helped write to new sober people on a LifeRing buddy email system and not one replied. Very demoralising.
Let me look at threads I've missed and then post again tomorrow.
Love to you, death to bureaucratic form-fillers.
I'm always amazed how fantastic the recorder can sound when played at advanced level. Our local primary school employed a really good recorder teacher and although it was sheer agony listening to the 6 year olds starting out, by 11 some of them were good, and she would have her seniors play as well and some of them were incredible.
Perfect for early music of course. That medieval vibe is so comforting I find.
Scotland is supposed to be at its best in May. My experience of Scottish holidays has mostly been in July when it has treated me to the dual pleasures of rain and midges! I have been to the festival a couple of times and even Edinburgh in August has had torrential rain!
Makes me think of Archy and Mehitabel. I always loved the idea of Archy writing free poetry without capitals simply because a cockroach can't operate the shift mechanism. I heard Ian Mcewan speakon the radio. He has written a novella called The Cockroach in which a cockroach gets to be British PM. About right!
As for computers, what with bugs and mice and viruses it's all a bit vermin ridden.
Lovely to see you here, love to you too.
A cockroach or two in the Cabinet sounds about right. The last Ian McEwan I read was Saturday -- I should do some catching up.
Windy cold spring here, the Finance Monster breathing down my neck, just the usual stresses of freelancing. It is my birthday this weekend and I shall eat asparagus and artichokes with roast chicken in the back garden because we can't afford restaurants or fine dining. The neighbour has given me a a carefully chosen gift of a large ugly beer mug she spotted on sale at a discount. She bought a dozen to hand out to family and friends.
The Depression Monster seems to have gone dormant which is good news.
Love, bliss, ordinary everyday happiness etc to you
Roast chicken with asparagus and artichokes sounds pretty good. Happy birthday Mary. I always put some sprigs of thyme in my roast chicken - but I just read a recipe from Provence that puts in a cup and a half of fresh thyme - I'm going to have to try that.
Enjoy your spring, we're just moving in to fall and having some wonderful weather.
Happy Birthday to You! That meal sounds perfect, as long as I don't think about my egg-laying feathered friends in the garden too hard!
Bojo ploughs on as PM here, even though he has been found guilty of acting unlawfully by 11 high court judges. I don't suppose I'd be allowed to keep my job had I been judged in such a way. Off with his head. Send him to the Tower. Or at least wrestle him to the ground before he completely wrecks things.
My new mission is to drink more water. It might be my imagination but my brain feels much juicier.
Have a lovely time celebrating. x
Thanks, Brian -- I also like thyme with chicken and have a variety of thymes growing out in the garden: lemon thyme, orange thyme, variegated thymes. One of the staples, along with parsley, mint, oreganum.