Tag Archives: death

PFF43: Trekkin’

Friday Flashback

Welcome to Paula’s Friday Flashback! This is a challenge begun by Fandango and it’s fun to see what we posted back when (as well as the comments). The post below is a reblog of a post I made almost 7 years ago (one day off). When I saw the title, and esp the alt title, I thought oh goody a dating post… my peeps will have fun reading this. But alas it is not. Sorry about that. 🙁

The Trek to Santa Ana

[Alt: Why I Still Get Valium Refilled]

I hate California ~ have I ever said this? Someday I shall retire to an idyllic place where there’s way less traffic and constant hassle.

So my dad had a checking account at Bank of America. As you may know, this is an institution with a ton of problems, but one thing they’re right on top of is freezing the small accounts of dead old people. I produced all manner of ID and stuffs, including a power of attorney, but none of that was good enough ~ I had to get his death certificate for them, plus then wait 40 days, for them to give me the money. If only I had thought of writing a check to myself for the full amount the minute I heard the news, right? But no.

The death certificate is available (for $16) in Santa Ana at the OC Health Care Agency, where it marinates for 60 days and then is transferred to the Hall of Records. Why is that? Because we need to have arbitrary rules. Dur. So, I left early Tuesday morning to go to the HCA, but the freeways were all messed up even then, so I arrived in Santa Ana at almost 8:00AM, and the streets were all crowded and miserable.

I found the building and saw the parking was all metered, natch. I had to drive around the block, and on the other side was the High School for the Performing Arts, mashed between all the gobblement buildings. WTF? Who’d put a high school there? Oh, and it was time for school, yay. So, I had to wait while all the budding Rembrandts and Lady Gagas ambled across the street, ushered by cops, and the mommies in their ginormous SUVs dropped off their preciousnesses. Gah!

OK. Finally I got back to my building, parked, found two quarters for the meter, and went inside. I was the only customer, whew. I decided to get two certificates, just in case. This was the easy part, figures. It’s always the driving/parking that stresses me out.

My grandmother’s middle name was Ann, like mine. I never knew. Strange to find out this way, after all this time.

/end reblog

~*~

Image from Pexels.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

I Think It’s Tuesday #PoiMe

Pointless meandering

Warning: this is not gonna be one of those smell the flowers in the pandemic posts, but there are plenty of those around, so if you would rather read something cheery, move along now.

I’ve been doing my side work from home as usual but not my main work. It would be complicated to set up. The days blend in a haze of sleeping late, sweatpants, coffee, news, news, and more news. 😢

It’s depressing to live this way and never see any of my favorite humans. I don’t know when I’ll be able to visit my daughter up North again. Or even see my family in Los Angeles. Everything seems terrifying. But I’ve been staying indoors mostly and not even going for walks. I don’t like getting the mail because I never know if someone will stand too close. Today was okay. No one was at the mailboxes when I was.

The worst thing is reading these constant bits of news and feeling more horrified. But I need to know what’s happening! I live near a busy street and traffic never stops whooshing by… where are they all going? Why aren’t they staying home like they’re supposed to? Aren’t they hearing the same stuff I am? 😡

I’ve been cleaning a lot. I have nothing else to do but keep checking the mishmash of news. I read a book. Probably will read another. Been chatting with friends. I was gonna bake banana bread, but no one else is around to help me eat it, so I didn’t. No need to turn into a chubby hermit. Got bored with the phone games. I’m finally working on Ghosted. 👻 Luckily, I really like it.

I am grumpy and sad. I don’t find the beauty in this. Maybe if I had a partner? Then we could be having luscious sex and engaging in wonderful deep conversations and playing chess and watching lovely old movies and making lasagna and planning our escape from this mad mad world, but instead I just keep checking the cat boxes to make sure no poop needs to be removed.

It’s not that I mind being alone. I like to be alone. It’s the forced aspect of it. And it’s the constant uncertainty in every direction. Health, family, finances, job, future. What’s going to happen? Even if things tentatively begin to improve, will we be re-whomped with this, or a new version, next winter?

Sorry, I can’t put up some Hallmark card type of post. This really sucks. 🙁

~*~

Image originally from Pixabay.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Sharing At A Distance

Share your world

This week’s questions from Melanie:

Are you a sweet, sour, tangy or other type of person?  Take that as you will! 😉

I have been told by the majority (in real life) that I’m a sweet person. Even online now, I’m pretty darn nice, compared to back in Usenet days. It’s just not worth it to engage with trolls and jerks. They have all the time in the world… and I do not. But that doesn’t mean I’ll put up with crap! Those days are gone. I vanish if someone is mean to me. 👻

Does the whole coronavirus phenomenon worry you?  Or are you more a “meh – it’s just another severe flu scare” type of person?

First, severe flus are scary! They kill loads of people every year, relentlessly. So, there is nothing not scary about another severe flu coming around. I’ve had the flu twice and both times were absolutely miserable experiences I do not wish to repeat. Each year, I get a flu vaccine, which supposedly is not perfect, but I haven’t had the flu any of those years (knock wood). 🍀

Second, scientists don’t have a complete handle on this coronavirus yet. They aren’t sure exactly how it behaves, and there is no vaccine yet. Its progression from mild to moderate to fatal can be extremely rapid, which is… scary. You feel like you’re getting better and then, bam! Your lungs overload.

Third, while the number of cases in the U.S. is tiny at the moment, we don’t know how many contagious people are walking around shedding the virus everywhere. This unknown is scary. Next week there could be thousands of cases shutting down a particular city, but which? Ah. 😱

Fourth, while I’m not in a high risk group, I am older-ish, so it’s prudent for me to be cautious. Forex, I just canceled a pleasure trip to Vegas next weekend. It can wait. No need to be on a plane and in large crowds right now. I’m not so much worried about death as I am the pain-in-the-assedness of having to deal with some kind of two-week quarantine or whatever annoying thing if I’m exposed to the virus. 😛

When was the last time you were snooping, and found something you wish you hadn’t?

I’ve written before that I snooped as a teenager while babysitting and found many “interesting” magazines and books. Later in life, the only times I’ve snooped were the typical looking for evidence on a guy’s laptop type of situation. I can’t say I’m sorry I found what I did. It’s always better to know.

What’s the most pleasant sounding accent in your personal opinion?   Everyone has a pleasing accent to someone! 

British, of course. 🇬🇧

Gratitude: Your chance to share your joy!

I found two new chairs for our dining room and that makes me happy.

Cat on dining room chair

~*~

Images from Melanie and me.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Animal Sounds [socs]

Stream of consciousness Saturday

I don’t know why but this animal sounds prompt makes all sorts of morbid thoughts run through my mind. I’m going with my first idea… which is wondering how many people’s last sound to process was that of an animal?

“Watch where you step out here. What was that rattle… ow!”

Rattlesnakes

“It wasn’t my imagination, honey! I don’t care what your guide book says. I definitely heard something growl.”

Hungry brown bear

“Eek, those things are noisy, but they don’t bother humans, right?”

Grumpy ostriches

~*~

Image credits to Shelley Krupa and Pexels.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Take These Broken Wings

Love is in da blog

Happy February! I’m participating in Bee’s fun music challenge again and hope you’ll join in (you don’t have to play every day).

Today’s theme is a love song for a parent. I’m sharing “Blackbird” by the Beatles because it was my mother’s favorite song. I miss her every day and always will. 💔

~*~

Written for Love Is In Da Blog Day 13.

Image credit to Happy Color.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Long Black Veil

Love is in da blog

Happy February! I’m participating in Bee’s fun music challenge again and hope you’ll join in (you don’t have to play every day).

Today’s theme is a country song about love. Now, here’s a secret: I like country music! Yep. I grew up with it and I enjoy it. Not all of it of course, but in general. Here’s one of my favorite songs, a tragic love story, covered by Rosanne Cash.

~*~

Written for Love Is In Da Blog Day 9.

Image credit to Happy Color.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Glimmer

I do not ask for pity
Though I may be a wretched soul
Lost to love and dreams,
My body cold and broken,
Withering in shadows.

I reject your useless pity!
Save it for the hungry,
With their outstretched bowls;
For I have no need of food
Here in my cage of bones.

Where were your tears of pity
When I could have used a hand?
Stuff your sobbing eulogies;
I prefer the subtle glimmer
Of the sunrise come to greet me.

~*~

Written for Eugi’s Weekly Prompt.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

FPQ56: Drive Me Crazy

Fandango’s provocative question

Fandango provocatively asks…

What’s something you consider to be terrifying that you have come to accept as a fact of life?

It’s probably not going to surprise anyone who knows me when I say driving. This is not an irrational fear. Let’s begin with some data.

The U.S. leads the way (rah!) on traffic fatalities. We have 12.4 per 100,000 population, about 50% higher than other Western nations. (source) Check that link for some reasons why.

Daily, I see people running red lights. Not once in a while… daily. I never see a cop chase after them, not once. Red light cameras have mostly been taken away due to cost and also there was concern they were causing more accidents (like the way Trump “caused” the Iranians to shoot down their own plane).

People speed and change lanes unsafely because… well, it’s all about them. They assume everyone else is paying close attention to the road. And whatever they have to do is more important than being safe. If they’re late, well, now that becomes our problem. God forbid people learn to leave enough time for appointments.

They tailgate because they are late and they are frustrated. Driving unsafely makes them feel better, I guess. Or they’re just not paying attention because they’re texting, chatting, eating, daydreaming, whatever. Or their judgment is impaired from drugs or stupidity or lack of sleep. Then there are the drivers who are armed, ready to shoot you over who knows what…

So, I “share” the roads with these maniacs and idiots and rage-filled criminals and hope every day not to die or get mangled in a car wreck. In 2018, about 40,000 people died in vehicle crashes ~ forty thousand (source) ~ not to mention all the injuries.

It’s weird how we’re supposed to be scared of molesters hiding behind trees in the park and bad dudes sneaking across the border to steal our lunches, but me… I’m terrified of driving, and yet I accept it as a fact of life here in Southern California. If you live in an area with great public transportation and don’t have to drive, consider yourself lucky!🍀

~*~

Image from Fandango himself.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Ten Year Report

Di of Pensitivity101 tagged me for this introspective challenge. I’ll begin with the high points of the past 10 years, followed by the low, and then answer her questions. I’m not going to tag anyone else. 🙂

High Points 2010 – 2020

In 2011, my sweet kitty Gatsby came into my life via the Orange County Animal Shelter. 😻❤️

My daughters both graduated from college (and did extremely well too), one in 2012 and one in 2015.

They also both got married to awesome guys (2017, 2019)! 💖💖

In 2018, a wonderful little granddaughter arrived! 😍✨🤩

I have published many books during these 10 years, and while they may not fly off the shelves, the fact that I have actual finished novels and other books out there gives me a great sense of accomplishment.

Low Points 2010 – 2020

My divorce was final in 2011, and while this was a necessary step, it’s still sad.

The relationship I had through my 2-year divorce process ended badly in 2011.

The entire 5-year dating debacle that followed was a depressing, and at times frightening, mess and continues to have repercussions to this day.

My dad passed in 2013 (my mom in 2008).

My cat Cocoa died in 2010 or 2011… my memory is a bit fuzzy right now. 😢

Di’s Questions

Is there any year in the past decade that stands out as the best?

-This last one (2019) ended up on a positive note because I moved into a new place with a good friend and got away from my old rundown apartment. I also spent quite a bit of time with family and friends and began writing a fun story. 🙂

Has your taste in music changed in the past ten years or do you think music in general has changed?

-I don’t listen to much new music, but in the last several years I’ve found myself liking more country and folk songs. Hard rock is a bit of a bore sometimes lately.

Are you heavier or lighter than you were ten years ago?

-I’m about the same, up maybe 2-3 pounds. But in the middle of these 10 years I was much lighter ~ I got sick from sushi (will never have it again) and could hardly eat for a month. Then a certain relationship stressed me out so much, anxiety kept my appetite away. I was 10 pounds lighter than today and so right now I feel “fat” because I liked the way I looked then. I’m hoping to get back there, but via exercise and good habits. 😇

How many cars have you owned in the past decade?

-Two.

Fun prompt! 🥳

~*~

Image snagged from Rory!

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

FPQ55: PolitICKY!

Fandango’s provocative question

I thought about skipping this FPQ because I don’t like to do politics here, but I hardly ever pass ~ I did once because I couldn’t figure out how to answer honestly without revealing too much personal detail. But anyway, I’m gonna tackle this one. 🥳

Before I start, I will mention that I’m sure people will disagree with my opinion, which is fine… however it is not okay to be nasty to me or other commenters or to troll my comments in general. And any racist, antisemitic, or other hateful comments will be deleted. That is an ongoing policy, btw.

Fandango provocatively asks…

Do you feel that Donald Trump was justified in ordering a drone strike that resulted in the assassination of Qasem Soleimani, the commander of Iran’s elite Quds Force, in an airstrike in Baghdad last week?

Do you think Trump’s decision will lead America into a hot war with Iran?

Do you think Trump’s motives are political and self serving?

I will start by saying that I can’t stand Donald Trump. I think he’s a liar and a con man, a buffoon, a narcissist, a racist (or at least panders to them), a misogynist, and an overall jerk who shouldn’t be POTUS. Needless to say, I did not vote for him and would never. However… that does not mean I am incapable of rational thought and must criticize every single thing he does as a Pavlovian reaction. I am not going to list the few things he’s done that I agree with because they are irrelevant to this question, but suffice to say they exist.

Was he justified in taking out Soleimani? I don’t know. You won’t see many, if any, people giving this answer, because social media is crammed full of intel specialists. I confess I am not one. I have read about the supposed reasons why Trump made the decision, and these reasons could be true or they could be lies, or a mishmash of both. We know that our Presidents have lied to us in the past in order to justify military actions… could this be another one of those times? Dunno!

Moving on from that… no American should be mourning Soleimani. He was a terrible man. And he will be replaced with another terrible man. Should we assassinate the next Iranian military leader if we discover a “plot” against us? What about the North Korean dude, Trump’s buddy ~ he’s always threatening us, and he already murdered one of our tourists. There are loads of bad guys… Putin, Assad, Erdogan, et al. Some would say Trump is also a bad guy…

Once assassination is on the table as a legit tool in the box, who knows where it will stop? Since I’m an American, I’m on board with protecting our interests and being tough with anyone who would hurt us. I’m not a martyr; I’m also able to grok other points of view however.

Second question… do I think this will lead us into a hot war? Again, everyone seems to have foreknowledge on this. Liberals think we’re doomed, but they’re always saying this, and eventually they’ll be right. Each of us will die, so at some point we will all be dead. Probably a catastrophic event will occur soon, as they do, like a massive epidemic or an enormous earthquake or an asteroid strike or wev… Perhaps it will be a big war, with Iran or some other player/s. Trump supporters all say this assassination will prevent war cuz now the Iranians are scared of us, or something, even though they aren’t acting scared, given that they just struck our bases in Iraq.

Me, I don’t know if we will end up in a hot war with Iran. I think it’s fine not to know. After all, we’re trying to predict the actions of a deranged demented lunatic regime and also those nutballs in Iran. Trump said he was going to attack 52 sites in Iran, one for each of our embassy hostages, which I thought was rather poetic, if Iran retaliated for Soleimani, but they did and he didn’t. So, now what? Are we done?

Finally, do I believe that Trump’s motives are political and self-serving? 😂😂😂 Well, duh! When aren’t they? Dude’s been running for re-election since the instant he became POTUS. It’s funny how his fans still act like he’s not a Washington insider and will “drain the swamp.” Newsflash for ya: after being POTUS for three years he is the swamp. Welcome to reality, folks.

~*~

Image from Fandango hisownself.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.