“Love calls – everywhere and always. We’re sky bound. Are you coming?” ― Rumi
Today is a Rumi kind of day for me. A day full of promise and wonder.
My date is scheduled to arrive in town momentarily. He is up in the air. Literally!
He will arrive and go to his hotel. I am at work, but hopefully leaving soon. We don’t have set plans, but we will probably meet for the first time at dinner.
It seems so promising. Yes, I am excited. That is the way it is supposed to be, I believe. Dates should be approached with excitement. It is just another date, and yet, it is not! It could turn out to be something amazing.
“I want to see you.
Know your voice.
Recognize you when you first come ’round the corner.
Sense your scent when I come into a room you’ve just left.
Know the lift of your heel, the glide of your foot.
Become familiar with the way you purse your lips then let them part, just the slightest bit, when I lean in to your space and kiss you.
I want to know the joy of how you whisper “more” ― Rumi
“Love liberates. It doesn’t bind. Love says, I love you. I love you if you’re in China. I love you if you’re across town. I love you if you’re in Harlem. I love you. I would like to be near you. I’d like to have your arms around me. I’d like to hear your voice in my ear. But that’s not possible now, so I love you. Go.” ― Maya Angelou
Since I have run out of available bachelors in New York State, I have branched out to other states. Just kidding… Maybe not.
BW is 59 years old, works in data marketing and lives in Boston. He looks and acts much younger than his years. That is a plus.
We had exchanged messages for a couple of weeks, then met this past weekend. He had to bring his son to New York City, so it was convenient for him to stop by and meet me.
He booked a room at the Marriott Residence Inn for Friday night. He mentioned he could extend his stay if I wished. We had dinner at Modern Restaurant, my go-to lately.
He brought me these gorgeous flowers all the way from Boston. Extra points for that.
We got along super great. There were sparks and tons of laughs. However, I have other things to consider besides chemistry.
He has been divorced for 2 years and has 2 pre-teen kids. The kids stay in the family home and the parents take turns.
He is stuck in Boston, and will have a lot responsibility for the next 8 to 10 years. Do I want to move to Boston? Do I want to be in a long distance relationship for that long?
My other concern besides the distance is that he seems to be dating anything in a skirt. I question how serious he would be about about dating only one person, near or far.
After the dinner on Friday night, we went by my apartment. I wanted to show him where it was so he could meet me the next day. I invited him in to show my mosaics. And by mosaics, I mean mosaics!
“Distance had an extraordinary power.” ― Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse
I gave him a tour. He left after a few minutes. The next morning, we met outside my building around 10am. We were going to walked around town for a little bit, but it was way too cold and windy. So we just walked to the bakery and the bagel shop, then returned to my apartment.
We stopped by my sister’s apartment and invited her over for breakfast at my apartment. It was fun, we all we were joking and talking as if we had known each other for years.
After my sister left, we just spend the time talking and laughing. Apparently I am a funny person. Because of the late breakfast we had a late lunch of tuna sandwiches around 2pm. He thought the sandwich was delicious.
He left to go back to Boston around 4pm. I didn’t ask him to stay another night. He was great company, we had sparks and all, but I thought another night it would be too much for a first date.
He is supposed to return in a couple of weeks. I want to reflect on this a bit more, before I actually have him return.
In the meantime, this just happened… just because I mentioned a first date from Friday to Sunday would be too long, what about a first date from Thursday afternoon to Sunday morning?
Yes, that is what is in store for next weekend. Yes, he is not from NY. Stay tuned.
“But then why, when talking on the phone, did they quarrel, on average at least once every four sentences? Maybe, though the inspector, it was an effect of the distance between them becoming less and less tolerable with each passing day, since as we grow old – for every now and then one must, yes, look reality in the eye and call things by their proper names – we feel more keenly the need to have the person we love beside us.” ― Andrea Camilleri
I immediately got up and went to Google. I don’t like to check on people I have dated. I feel that every time I look back, it prevents me from embracing my present and future. Every time I look back it sets me back.
But this time, I didn’t stop to think if I was going to look back or not. I had to do it. It was already midnight, I was tired, and had to wake up early the next morning. Still, I had to do it. I had to look him up.
“There’s always someone who knows something.” ―Stephen King
It had been over 2 years; I couldn’t remember the exact spelling of his last name. I spend a long time just googling whatever I could think of. Searching phone numbers was useless. On the brief time we interacted he changed numbers 3 times.
Then I started attaching the names of towns I thought he lived at to different last names. After a couple of hours…yes, that is how long it took me. I wouldn’t give up. I become a dog with a bone any time I want to try to find any information.
Then I found his obituary!!
He passed away in September. I was shocked, and yet not surprised… if that makes any sense to you. It was shocking because he was so young – he was a month shy of 50 years old. I was not surprised because there was always a lot danger in the stories he told me. It seemed to me he was reckless when it came to his well being. It is difficult to describe him.
Now, the next step was to find out how he died. And that is where Miss Can Find Anything on the Internet came up empty handed.
“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.” ― Rainer Maria Rilke
There was nothing, not a hint, not a clue. In the obituary/memorial site there were only 7 comments, and they were all about what a great person he was and words of comfort to his family.
I then was able to find his ex-wife’s Facebook. There were 154 comments on her post of his passing. There was not a single hint from the post or the comments as to how he passed.
For some reason I suspect that it had something to do with the war in Ukraine. He had mentioned his involvement with a private military company in Russia. He mentioned that was scheduled to go and do some work overseas for them. I don’t want to reveal the name of the company here and some other details.
I don’t know if all he told me was true or not. Or perhaps it was make believe. I don’t know, and probably never will. He will remain an Enigma to me. So gentle and caring, a teacher and volunteer; and then there was this other side that seemed incredibly dangerous and reckless.
TCM, I believe in your kindness and good heart. I hope that you have found peace and contentment where you are. Thank you for our brief encounter, flowers and the book!
(I still have the little purple flowers that he gave me on our date. I dried them and kept them in a vase on my counter in my bathroom. I am not sure why I did that. I never kept any flowers from any date – something about not wanting to think of them)
“When he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.” ―William Shakespeare
“I have notes in my bathroom, yellow notes, and I stick ’em on the mirror, things that happened that were uplifting boosters for me. Notes that say, “Today is special, make today count.” And then I have one note on the mirror in the middle that says, “Look at the other notes.” ― Burt Bacharach
I am not sure of the date when this happened, but I am guessing it is between 1985 and 1990. Those were the years that I was the nanny/housekeeper/cook/chauffer, etc for a Jewish family.
It is interesting that in all my jobs I end up doing it all. Right now, at my firm, I handle Finance, Compliance, Human Resources, Accounts Receivables, Accounts Payable, etc, etc.
“…it won’t be long till happiness steps up to greet me.” – Burt Bacharach and Hal David
But I digress, I used to go with this family a few times a year to visit her family in Los Angeles. This particular time I had the little boy I used to care for, who was also a toddler, on my lap. I remember I was feeding him something. I do not recall what it was. I remember scrambled eggs at some point in the story.
Then there comes, walking up the aisle, this little blonde toddler followed by his father. He wanted whatever I was feeding my little boy, perhaps it was Cheerios. I remember giving him some, and he gladly accepted. I had no clue it was Burt Bacharach standing there with his son. My focus was on the 2 toddlers giggling at each other.
The woman that I was with, my boss, started talking to him immediately. That is not surprising, this woman will talk to anyone about anything. I remember getting in taxis with her, and by the end of the ride, we knew everything about the driver, his family, the town, his passengers, the price of gas, his dreams, etc. I always admired that about her, and I often do the same. If someone is receptive, that is. Nowadays everyone is too suspicious. My sister asked her cab driver a question the other day, and he surly said: Why do you want to know? Later he apologized.
“A synonym is a word you use when you can’t spell the word you first thought of.” ― Burt Bacharach
Anyway, getting back to the flight… as she continued to talk to the father I eventually became aware of who he was. At first she was talking about the boys, then she went on to say how she enjoyed all his music, and she asked about his wife, Carole Bayer Sager. That is when I realized who this man was. At the end of the flight, I believe we got to say hello to her.
The little toddler made multiple trips back to us. He seemed enamored of my little boy and his toys. At one point I think they brought his food to the back so that he ate while interacting with us. I think that is when the scrambled eggs made an appearance.
What I remember most about this experience was how down to earth he was. He was approachable and easy going. Just a regular doting father with his child. There was nothing about him that screamed “famous”. There was nothing memorable about this encounter and it is still unforgettable.
I just Googled now and I believe that toddler was Christopher Bacharach, and I think the year was perhaps 1986. He was adopted as an infant by Burt and Carole.
In 1986 I was 20 years old, full of dreams. Life flies by. I am still a dreamer.
Rest in peace Mr. Bacharach, I know you will continue to make beautiful music anywhere you may land.
I am choosing to add the video for “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on my Head” because I grew up in love with that song.
“The deeds you do may be the only sermon some persons will hear today” –―St. Francis Of Assisi
Yesterday, as I was walking to work, I see a man turn a corner, running and screaming towards a school bus. A little boy of around 6 years of age is running behind him.
He is screaming at the top of his lungs at the bus driver while waving his phone. He is yelling: “7:14 now, not 7:15.” I am guessing the bus is supposed to leave at 7:15am, and it was leaving a minute early.
I recognize the boy. I always see him standing with his mother at the corner. I notice them because the mother is always speaking Portuguese to him. I assume she is Brazilian. I think to myself: The mother manages to be there early everyday.
“Knowing when to fight is just as important as knowing how.” ―Terry Goodkind, Faith of the Fallen
This man is so furious, it is scary. I am hyper alert now, thinking that I may have to end up calling the police. Confrontations such as these always terrifies me. When people can’t control their temper, anything can happen.
I, and some others walking by, slowed down to watch this unfold.
I am glad the female bus driver didn’t engage. I see that she attempted to say something but he was too loud and too furious to hear anything, so she gave up.
The boy got in the bus and walked to his seat. The driver closed the bus door and proceeded to leave. The man, still mumbling some choice words, walks along the bus to where the boy was sitting. He hits on the window, waves and yells “I love you” to the boy.
“Instruction is good for a child; but example is worth more.” – ―Alexandre Dumas, Twenty Years After
Is he serious? After such a neanderthal display, he thinks that saying I love you will erase how he just behaved. Or perhaps, even worst, he didn’t even realize what he just did.
He may or may not have been right about the bus schedule, but nothing gives him the right to act in such a way. Doesn’t he realize the scene he caused? Doesn’t he realize what he is teaching his child?
Is he that way inside his home? With the wife? With the kid? I cannot picture this man being able to have a civil disagreement.
So many men, and women, are so ill prepared to be parents. Actually, so many people seem ill-prepared to live in society.
“If behavior is contagious, is yours worth catching?” ―Frank Sonnenberg, The Path to a Meaningful Life
I understand the aggravations of the day to day. I understand bad mornings, but have a little more control of yourself, for the sake of your child and everyone in earshot.
I wish I would have said something, but I was afraid. This man was so mad it looked like he was going to punch someone. I am not about to risk my life, unless I really have to.
Parents, don’t just say I love you, show it. Show love by the way you interact with others. Show love by respecting others. The children are our future, we can’t afford to have them think that this is acceptable behavior.
I know I am being judgmental, but watching this yesterday morning really shook me. This man disturbed my peace, and that of others around. I felt for the driver. I also made me realize how easy “I love yous” are thrown around as bandaids, pacifiers, rewards, weapons, etc.”
“Peace does not mean an absence of conflicts; differences will always be there. Peace means solving these differences through peaceful means; through dialogue, education, knowledge; and through humane ways.” ―Dalai Lama XIV
“The day the power of love overrules the love of power, the world will know peace.” ―Mahatma Gandhi
I have been watching documentaries while walking on a treadmill in the mornings and at lunch time.
Here is a quick summary of some of what I have seen lately:
Mucho mucho Amor – The Legend of Walter Mercado – This brought me back to the first time I had seen him on TV – so outrageous, so out there. He was so exuberant and positive while discussing astrology. He mentioned his mother encouraged him to be himself, to be different and follow his passions. What a wonderful advice a mother can give her child! He was so ahead of his time, always marching to the beat of his own drum. Unfortunately he was too trusting and was taken advantage of.
“The measure of a man is what he does with power.” ―Plato
The Deep End – This is the story of Teal Swan, a self proclaimed spiritual leader. I hadn’t heard about her before, but she has been around since 2011. I started watching it, excited to learn about some new spiritual teachings. All I learned is that she seems to be a dangerous narcissist, more interested in becoming a millionaire cult leader than in actually helping people. She preys on the weak minded and the sick, the most vulnerable ones in our society. In the end it was all just disturbing, specially in how she treated those around her.
“Power resides only where men believe it resides. […] A shadow on the wall, yet shadows can kill. And ofttimes a very small man can cast a very large shadow.” ― George R.R. Martin, A Clash of Kings
Brikam – Yogi, Guru, Predator – This was about a celebrity yoga guru from 20 years ago. He amassed a huge following that was so quick to buy into his cure-all proclamations. People were willing to be yelled at and demeaned. So many predators hide behind spiritual practices. It is scary that everyone is so quick to follow the latest guru, the next cure. Yoga should be aligned with the spiritual side, a whole mind-body experience, but many were just interested in being part of the latest new thing.
“When it comes to controlling human beings there is no better instrument than lies. Because, you see, humans live by beliefs. And beliefs can be manipulated. The power to manipulate beliefs is the only thing that counts.” ― Michael Ende, The Neverending Story
John of God – The Crimes of a Spiritual Healer – This is the story of a healer that was internationally known, and later was revealed to be a sexual abuser and predator. I didn’t want this story to be true; not because he is Brazilian like me, but because I do believe in mediums and in spiritual surgeries. When something like this happens, it discredits the good mediums, doing work for the right reasons.
I have gone with my father to one of those mediums in Brazil. I went to the IMA – Instituto Medicina do Alem (Medical Institute of the Beyond). I know it can work. I do feel for the women that were abused and I am glad that the abuses came to light.
Except for Walter Mercado, the others are mixture of charlatans, abusers and predators. Did they start out that way, or did they actually had good intentions at the beginning? Did money and fame corrupted them? I want to believe in the goodness of people, but also want to believe that good and love can’t ever be corrupted.
This is a reminder for me not to follow the crowd without doing my own research and drawing with my own conclusions. We need to always follow our gut and intuition. If something feels wrong, then act on it, and speak up! Don’t be a follower!
“Anger … it’s a paralyzing emotion … you can’t get anything done. People sort of think it’s an interesting, passionate, and igniting feeling — I don’t think it’s any of that — it’s helpless … it’s absence of control — and I need all of my skills, all of the control, all of my powers … and anger doesn’t provide any of that — I have no use for it whatsoever.” [Interview with CBS radio host Don Swaim, September 15, 1987.]” ― Toni Morrison
“True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so wants nothing. The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach. A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it may be, without wishing for what he has not.” ― Seneca
To all that sent good issues to my brother, I thank you so much. All the good wishes and prayers worked. I am happy to report that he is doing much better.
Here is my latest project. I keep trying different materials and projects, to eventually find my voice. Perhaps I don’t have one specific voice.
This vase looks great on a window with the sun hitting it from behind. I took the pictures at night, so I added a light to achieve the same effect.
“Life is like a box of crayons. Most people are the 8 color boxes, but what you’re really looking for are the 64 color boxes with the sharpeners on the back. I fancy myself to be a 64 color box, though I’ve got a few missing. It’s okay though, because I’ve got some more vibrant colors like periwinkle at my disposal. I have a bit of a problem though in that I can only meet the 8 color boxes. Does anyone else have that problem? I mean there are so many different colors of life, of feeling, of articulation. So when I meet someone who’s an 8 color type…I’m like, hey girl, Magenta! and she’s like, oh, you mean purple! and she goes off on her purple thing, and I’m like, no I want Magenta!” ― John Mayer
“In daily life we experience suffering more often than pleasure. If we are patient, in the sense of taking suffering voluntarily upon ourselves, even if we are not capable of doing this physically, then we will not lose our capacity for judgement. We should remember that if a situation cannot be changed, there is no point in worrying about it. If it can be changed, then there is no need to worry about it either, we should simply go about changing it.” ―Dalai Lama XIV, Dalai Lama’s Little Book of Inner Peace: The Essential Life and Teachings
Hello, I hope you all had an amazing weekend!
For the last few days, I have been dealing with feelings of powerlessness.
Family far away. I found out on Saturday that my brother has COVID. My brother takes care of my older parents.
So many thoughts. What if my brother gets so ill and has to go to the hospital? What if my parents get it?
It is the type of situation that I wish I could get on a plane and get there asap. But I can’t. It is not that simple. I have my tickets to Brazil already bought, but they are for April.
Fortunately, from Saturday until now, he is doing much better. So far, my parents haven’t contracted it.
It is so hard to live far away and not be able to just go and be with them. I should be used to that situation already, after living in the US for the past 39 years.
Canceled date. I was going on a date on Sunday and my date canceled. He also contracted COVID. I was looking forward to that date. Not because I thought we were such a good match, but because he seemed so intelligent and I imagined great conversations. I no longer focus on the future of a date, I focus on the moment.
He wanted to talk on the phone until he recovers, I said no. I am not sure why. I keep going with my gut on the phone situation. Sometimes I will give my number and talk on the phone, while other times I insist on meeting in person first.
Two people I know in 2 separate parts of the world getting Covid is to me such a reminder that Covid is not only still around, but it is here to stay. We just need to learn to deal with it.
Cold sores. I have never had a mouth/cold sore until last week. I am glad it was small and not too unsightly. This morning, it seems, I may be getting another one. I am blaming it on the stress of work in the last months. Stress and a possible weak immune system. I have relaxed a bit on all I was doing to take care of myself.
It is all common sense the items on my list below, but it is so easy to relax a bit, and all of a sudden all I am doing is eating cake and watching Netflix.
So, starting now, I am focusing on:
Eating well. I do eat well, but 2 words: Less sugar!!
Sleeping well. Get to bed before 11pm.
Take Vitamin C. I take plenty of vitamins and supplements, but I just realized that I haven’t taken vitamin C in months.
Exercise more intentionally. I walk on a treadmill every day, sometimes twice a day. Every now and then I do some light weight training. I need to follow a program and a set of exercises.
Meditate (or just sit still). It does wonders for me when I take some time out of my day to just be still.
I am disappointed that I didn’t handle these feelings of powerlessness better. I have read so much, experienced so much, wrote so much about it. I should be a master at dealing with situations which I have no control of, by now. This is another reminder that some lessons are never done. We are constantly being tested.
I am disappointed when I realized that I had been putting myself and my well-being last. Work has been first for so long. First with my assistant our for 3 months, then the audit for 6 months. There was hardly any time for me in there. 2022 was very tough on me and my psyche.
The rest of 2023 will be all about me! ME! ME! ME!
“Every day, think as you wake up, today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others; to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings. I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others. I am going to benefit others as much as I can.” ―The Dalai Lama
“Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.” ― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
Happy Sunday everyone!
I go to the mosaic studio twice a week, so I am always working on something. Often, even before I finish a project, I already have an idea of what I am going to work on next. This time I didn’t.
Looking around the studio I decided to do a star. But the star shapes we had there didn’t appeal to me, so I decided to use a square frame and draw a star.
Very often, the end project is very different from my initial intention, for a variety of reasons. Sometimes my initial idea is too ambitious (not in this case), sometimes the materials are not doing what I need them to do, sometimes I lose interest and I just want to get it done to start something else.
It is easy to dream up something… getting it done is the hard part.
I love doing mosaics, and the studio is my happy place, but there are times that I only focus on the result and not in the process. Mosaics is a my constant reminder to enjoy the journey and to stop focusing only on the destination.
I am, and forever will be, a student of mosaics and life.
Here is the star I made. It is done with colored glass, and some small mirror tiles. I used black grout, instead of something lighter, to make more of an impact. In the end it is not what I initially had in mind, but still I am happy with it.
“I know that I am mortal by nature, and ephemeral; but when I trace at my pleasure the windings to and fro of the heavenly bodies I no longer touch the earth with my feet: I stand in the presence of Zeus himself and take my fill of ambrosia” – Ptolemy, Ptolemy’s Almagest
I am sorry about all the issues that some of you are having trying to reach my blog. I hear you and I have been attempting to fix it. I suspect things will get worse before they get better, so please hang in there.
I have also been experiencing issues while visiting some of you. I like or comment a post, and at that moment it shows. If I refresh the page or go back to the post, it is no longer there.
I emailed WordPress and I am waiting on their response. Please be patient with me and my blog.
And on the topic of patience, that is the always current lesson in my life. I struggle with it; I fight with it. It always fights back, and it always win. Time and time again I realize that things are not on my timing. I have to respect that, and get in line.
“A warrior of the Light is never in a hurry.
Time works in his favor; he learns to master his impatience and avoids acting without thinking.” ―Paulo Coelho, Warrior of the Light
Good news: Yesterday we had our audit exit interview. It went well, no major findings. They will be sending an official letter in the next few days. Once we get the letter, we will have 10 days to reply. I will probably have to write a couple of pages regarding the findings and corrections necessaries, but it shouldn’t be too bad.
And that should be the end of it. Well, until we hear from them again. We have been audited by our industry regulators in 2015, 2019, and 2022. The last one, ending now, after 6 months.
I still have plenty of other work to do, but not having auditors hanging over my head, never knowing when more questions are coming, is such a relief.
I found the writing below and it seems to have been written for an Aries (it fits me to a T). If anyone knows the author, please let me know so I can give it credit.
“Prayer of an Anonymous Abbess:
Lord, thou knowest better than myself that I am growing older and will soon be old. Keep me from becoming too talkative, and especially from the unfortunate habit of thinking that I must say something on every subject and at every opportunity.
Release me from the idea that I must straighten out other peoples’ affairs. With my immense treasure of experience and wisdom, it seems a pity not to let everybody partake of it. But thou knowest, Lord, that in the end I will need a few friends.
Keep me from the recital of endless details; give me wings to get to the point.
Grant me the patience to listen to the complaints of others; help me to endure them with charity. But seal my lips on my own aches and pains — they increase with the increasing years and my inclination to recount them is also increasing.
I will not ask thee for improved memory, only for a little more humility and less self-assurance when my own memory doesn’t agree with that of others. Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be wrong.
Keep me reasonably gentle. I do not have the ambition to become a saint — it is so hard to live with some of them — but a harsh old person is one of the devil’s masterpieces.
Make me sympathetic without being sentimental, helpful but not bossy. Let me discover merits where I had not expected them, and talents in people whom I had not thought to possess any. And, Lord, give me the grace to tell them so.