I wish I still walked these paths. It has been two years since I have walked them. It was something I truly enjoyed. I just don’t trust my legs to hold me up anymore on the longer, less traveled spots. My dear Angus has passed away last month and I miss him. I could take Alistair with me though. Maybe he wouldn’t run away whenever I fall down. Angus would leave me in the dust and took the opportunity of me losing my grip on his leash to chase squirrels. I still loved him anyway. It was so hard to see him get old and frail. I can almost smell the autumn forest smell. I have to go back. I can feel the walking paths calling to me. Telling me it is time to try to come back. Some of my best inpsiration for writing and stories came when I was walking these trails. And I miss taking my pictures. Even though the paths didn’t change, the scenery always did in some small way. New leaves, new birds, new people. Yes, I think it is time to start walking again.
I knew I had messed this up. Here is the list of my Leibster Award Nominees and their 11 Questions.
I am going to work on nominating more people later. I just don’t want to lose this post like I did the last one. I want to do more research and find some people that have not been nominated. Take care, love and blessings to all who read my musings.
I made the move to join the military. I joined the Navy on 22nd November 1985. I was so lost. I had asked God, who I know had saved my life from a very bad decision, what he had planned for me. He wanted me here, so why was I here. I was at a laundromat doing laundry when an army recruiter started talking to me. She asked me, “What are your plans for your life? What is it that you think you are here to do?” It was like God answering me. Giving me the chance to answer my own questions. I took my ASVAB and went to the recruiters office and waited to hear what job I was going to do. Jeep mechanic. That is what they offered though I was one of their top scorers on the exam. Women were not being allowed in the military as much as they had met their quotas so I was lucky to be offered this. I told them that is not what I was meant to do. I wanted to be a medic. They were going to see what they could do, but were not hopeful. The Navy recuriter heard what was going on as his office was next to hers and he essentially stole me from her and put me in the Navy. I told her I was grateful to her, but the army at that time would not let you change your MOS or job rating until the next enlistment. The Navy was more flexible and I could change ratings with approval at most any time as long as there were openings in the field I wanted. There were no Hospital Corpsman billets open but I could go in as a Seaman and Cross Train for Hospital Corpsman.
I arrived at boot camp and did very well. If I hadn’t gone in as an E3 they would have given me the advancement on graduation from boot camp. I was however, changed to an Airman Apprentice. This was still a good opportunity and it ended up that I became my squadron corpsman and had an excellent Career Counselor and she helped me to get cross trained for Squadron Corpsman. I received my first two award letters from my work with the squadron. Over my twenty years in the Navy, I learned more than I ever thought. I earned my Cardiopulmonary Credential, my Respiratory Therapy License, my Associates Degrees through my Master’s Degree. There was so much bad with it as well, but I have chosen to look at those events as what needs to happen for growth. You cannot grow without difficulty. You cannot grow sometimes without overcoming obstacles and feeling the pain of failure and then using that failure to push you forward to succeed. The biggest change I ever made was making the choice to live.
This was a post I started 4 years ago. A good example of how things change and yet stay the same. Except it seems 4 years ago I was happier and in a better place. Especially with writing. But, the steps I take seem to take me one half step forward and three steps back these days. But, any forward movement is just that, a movement forward. Or at least not going backward. A garden that I had worked on so hard and then had to leave only a couple of months later. This is one of my favorite plants. Gone now, but I have started a new garden. Here are my thoughts from 4 years ago.
Does it sometimes seem like the steps you want to take to improve yourself just seem overwhelming? I have so many things I want to accomplish. I know I need to make a schedule and that there is a time during the day to do the things I want. And that maybe I need to scale back on some of the things I want to do. I would rather go slowly than at full speed and burn out before I get anything done.
“A fun Friday challenge by OM to describe any
city in less than 1 000 words.”
( I started this 4 years ago in response to this challenge. I knew I was getting off track of the topic and never finished it. I decided today, what the heck. I will finish it. Perhaps I will use it to write a full story later. I hope you don’t mind.)
Alec had walked for days. He had to reach the ancient city of Arkan before the end of this day if he was to complete his quest on time. There were twenty people relying on him. He walked through the tree line and with great sadness looked upon the city that had once been his people’s home. The great towers that reached toward the sky were broken, the crystal parapets now lay at their feet.
His footsteps echoed down empty cobble stone streets as he walked towards the imposing Cathedral. Fingers tracing lines through soot on pink crystal walls. The colored windows of the city once brightly lit now are cracked and dark. Shadows whispering in the wind, fleetingly pass from one building to another. Alec paid them no mind, they were memories trapped here from a distant time. He paused to look into the broken window of a bakery. The cakes and breads hardened to stone upon the stands by the heat from the disaster. All roads led to the great fountain in the center of the city. The rushing water spilling from the peak in it’s center filled the empty spaces with sound. The fountain was carved from marble as black as night and rose four stories high. Water flowed from the golden filagreed top down 6 tiers of black stone held up by a marble statue of a forgotten God. Four towers remained intact around the center square along with the great cathedral. Each tower contained a large lense that focused the last sunlight of that season’s equinox upon the fountain. Four season, four towers. What was not forgotten was the power in the water to heal any illness. The reason for his quest.
The last of the summer light shone upon the lense in the yellow crystal tower. A bright beam of light fell upon the fountain head. The flowing water sparkled in the light and began to glow. Alec ran forward with ten flasks and filled them full. He stepped back and watched the glow fade with the setting sun. He turned to enter the large cathedral. If you did not leave a “gift” you could never leave the city again. The heavy cathedral doors were ornately carved mahogany. Flora and Fauna of all types flowed in patterns from the top to the bottom. His legs suddenly felt heavy as he walked up the steps to the doors and he had to push with all his strength to open them. His fingers wrapped around the edges of the doors and he leaned into the door to open it further. The sound of the heavy metal grating on long rusted hinges echoed rang harshly in the air. He walked inside, his legs got heavier with each step. He had heard that the effort given to leave the gift was as much a test as the trip to the city itself. His shoes left scrape marks in the dust as he shuffled his feet forward. The brightly colored tiles shone through the layers of dust. The alter was in the center of the cathedral room. It was also carved of black marble and etched with gold writing. A language that was as forgotten as the god holding up the fountain.
He fell to his knees and crawled the remaining distance. He pulled himself up to stand and with shaking hands removed the his most prized possession and placed it upon the altar. The simple leather vest lay upon the dust covered surface. He dare not brush the dust away, he just laid the vest gently on top. This was the last thing his mother ever made for him before she died. It was brown, sueded leather with ornate beading and embroidery in the shape of flowers and birds. It was made for his coming of age ceremony this year. There had been a huge celebration as he was the Chief’s son. She lovingly put it on him before the ceremony and kissed his head. Told him how proud she was of him and then smiled and playfully pushed him out of the house. But, as soon as everyone had started eating the food they had become ill. His mother was one of the first to die. His father remained ill. No one knew why this was happening. No one had anything to gain by doing this to them. Then one of the healers had said it was just an accident. A child sent to pick the herbs had chosen the wrong ones. There was only one cure. The healing waters of the city. He had not eaten anything as he and the other children reaching their time of change was supposed to fast until the next morning. There were a few remaining adults who had been serving, but not eating that would look after everyone until he returned.
He felt the life draining from him. “I need to go home, please…I am begging you. Accept my gift so I can save my people. This water isn’t for me, it is for them!” He cried out “Please!” A voice like the whispering wind he had heard walking through city streets brushed his ears. “I accept you gift on one condition.” “Yes, anything.” Alec answered. “You and the remainder of your people must come back here and live in the city once again. I will take care of them, and they will take care of me…please tell them to return.” Alec had been warned to agree to whatever was asked or he could never leave.”
Wow…I was looking at my page and realizing how many posts I had started an not finished and were sitting in my drafts box. I really do miss blogging. I am hoping that this new spurt of creative energy continues. I remember thinking when I took this picture how that one daisy, half eaten and damaged was still beautiful. Isn’t that the way it can be with people. They can look worn and damaged and still have a spiritual light. A beauty that transends what their physical appearance displays. There are so many times I feel like that daisy. Half of me missing, damaged and worn. But, I would hope that I can maintain a spiritual light that can and does transend the physical pain and the worn appearnace. I am blessed to know people who have been going through trials both physical and spiritual and come out the other side with that wonderful spiritual light. They inspire me to continue and I will do my best to do so.