Thursday, July 20, 2017

so that is what happens when you wake up early

 you get stuff done.  haha.  had to get up early and get my blood drawn.  my to do list was staring at me so i made a plan.  left the pups at home and headed out to conquer the list.
 felt bad as they called me back from the blood draw before the guy who was in front of me in line...unsure why that was i just followed when my name got called...did tell the lab tech that there were people that came in before me.  she quickly drew my blood though and the other guy was there before i walked out so no big deal..figured if we made too much of it the whole process would be slowed up and take even longer.
 ran out of time so i had to get to my Dr appointment before grabbing any food. the nurse took pity on me and brought me some crackers and cheese though.  so nice.  should hear about the blood tests and all that tomorrow but looks like overall I'm still healthy.  well, as healthy as you are when you are over 50.  sometimes my body feels like a time bomb.  like you get to a certain age and you realize that bad stuff can happen.
 when you are young you really don't concern yourself with the possibilities.  now...like an old used car, stuff can start to break down.
 bills, cat litter, bank, oil change, laundry.  so this is what people do every day?? haha.
 rained all day. did get the dogs out for their 4 miles of walking.  we just looped around the dog park a few times.  i still have to make the bed. it's a process.
 these are out at Round Island.  getting close to the end of these shots...so sad.  such an amazing place to go.
 my last two road trips I've listened to pod casts instead of music.  just a change.  nice to catch up on some of my new favorite pod casts.  i love the moth, stuff you should know and this trip i listened to a lot of ted radio hour.  i have always loved ted talks anyway.
 one was focused on altruism.  some people are literally more wired to being altruistic than others according to research but you can develope it.  i remember one was talking about a program in prison where convicted murderers were paid like 22 cents/hr to care for elderly dementia inmates.  they were learning to care.  maybe that wasn't in the altruistic segment.  hmmm.  you listen to a lot over the course of 2 5+ hour drives.
 the segment on endurance had a guy who had skied from the coast of Antarctica to the pole and back.  they also had Monica Lewinsky highlighted.  interesting to listen to her talk about how all that impacted her.  she was mentioning that for a time her mother insisted that she shower with the door open for fear she would kill herself.  she was saying how much hate came at her and how much worse this can be now for others with all the cyber bullying.
 she made a mistake, a bad one, but her punishment by society did not fit her crime really.  humans are really hard on each other.  we often tear others down to make ourselves feel better.  the mother of one of those Columbine teens who killed many classmates before taking his life spoke in one segment on another episode.  I've heard her talk before.   as a parent the wrath was directed at her for all his victims. sounds like she has spent many years trying to make some sort of sense of it.  trying to figure out what she hadn't seen, how it was possible....
 we all have our own challenges to survive, but some do have to deal more publicly with theirs.  these days the cyber world can be brutal.  people feel free to be their most cruel and hateful selves without fear of reprisal.  they can direct all their hatred and anger at people who are unable to fight back, so they feel safe speaking horribly about them.
 what have i endured?  nothing as huge as crossing the Antarctic wilderness, but i think we are more resilient that we ever imagine ourselves to be.
 another was on forgiveness.  we all have those choices.  do we forgive or do we allow those things we feel we can't forgive to eat away.  in the end...not forgiving seems to harm the one who refuses to forgive.  at some level you have to just let it go or it will just harm you more.  what is the point anyway?  why give another person that much power over you.  in my mind it is giving them power.  anytime you give in to hatred to lose a piece of yourself.
 there was another episode where they were discussing things in space.  I've always found it so difficult to comprehend space.  in our world things end, they begin and they end. space just goes on and on.  i guess the universe is apparently expanding.  there is still much to learn and things we think we know change as more is learned. that is science...forever learning more.  adding to what we know and what we thought we knew.
 it all goes into my brain and I'm sure as I'm listening to all this information that i will remember it...but it passes through me.  i was never as good at retention and regurgitation of information...but it's in there in my brain....mostly, my brain seems to focus on the bigger picture rather than minute details though those minute details are the building blocks that help me alter my vision of this world so often. i hear them, i understand them and i am often changed by them.
 there is so much information out there it's impossible to not have your opinions altered over time if you are open to it all. nothing is finite.
 we each have to be brave enough to explore all the idea's that we can.  to be open to the possibility that what we believed yesterday can be altered tomorrow.
 the earth was once seen as flat, many believed the sun revolved around the earth...some still do. we walked on the moon long before we explored the depths of our oceans here.  there are still many unexplored places on earth.  there are apparently taller mountains under the ocean than on land and deeper trenches with many species surviving in places we have yet to discover.
 there will always be the explorers, the brave and yes, somewhat arrogant adventurers who seek out those places that have yet to be discovered.  there will always be those that want answers and want to find solutions.  there are those who give up and/or risk their lives for others.  people who are willing to help others who others have forgotten.  families that adopt multiple special needs kids, people who risk their lives to save those in area's where diseases spread quickly.
 there will also always be the artists.  what is life without artists?  there are so many ways people express themselves artistically, musically, physically.  they make us laugh and cry and help us to see ourselves and others as we are.  they are the reflection of all of us.
 the story tellers who create a narrative that helps us learn more of ourselves or discover other places and lives.  help us escape, help us dream.
 there are also always going to be those who fear change, who fear anything that is different and unique.  it's safer to just follow the path that was presented to them. it's comforting and for some reason they fear those who break away from the path.
 change is scary but it is great.  the scary is what makes you stronger.  we always need to push ourselves to be better selves.
 we are all successes and we are all failures.  we are all happy and sad.  we are all confident and we are all insecure.  we are all  beautiful and we are all ugly.  we are all capable of greatness and we are all capable of cruelty.
 the best way to accept others failings is to accept your own.  to embrace your imperfect self.  we are all the 7 deadly sins...
 Pride, Greed, Lust, Envy, Gluttony, Wrath and Sloth
 it's there, in all of us.  some I'm sure as individuals we battle more than others.  that was another ted talk podcast by the way...the seven deadly sins.
 there was even a Gilligan's Island metaphor that proposed that the 7 characters there were based on the seven deadly sins..i think that was also true for many other famous productions.
 we can't escape our weaknesses...
 but the more we learn of our faults the more we build up our strengths.
 there but for the grace of God go I.  we are all capable of breaking all the commandments in the right circumstance.  thou shalt not judge is because of this.  because we are all fallible, we are all learning.  we are all evolving.
 wouldn't it be nice if we each tried a little harder to help each other.
grateful for:  A. my failures because of what they taught me  B.  my challenges because they are what strengthened me  C.  my passion because sometimes we all just need to kick a little arse

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

more from June...

 a rainy day out at the Conservation Center.
 just returned from a few nights in Homer.  stopped coming and going to check in on the baby walrus.  I'm still calling him Nugget though he will get an official name at a later date. he is growing and looking good.  they have changed up his enclosure since i last saw him.  it's filled with water now and a platform.  he's being encouraged to swim more.  helps his bowels and just more normal and healthy for a walrus.
 the handlers are trying to only allow him to place his head or one flipper on them.  he's getting bigger and will get much bigger so they need to train him so he will  not hurt anyone in the future.
 was able to watch his feed this evening.  they encouraged him into the water and then they move around with the bottle.  he was hesitant at first to get into the colder water.  at first he had more sores on his body.  the gulls had already started attacking the little guy when he was stranded so he had open sores and they used warmer water in the puddle pool.  the bigger pool is cold water though.
 the walrus snugglers do 4-8 hour shifts.  there is always 2-3 folks in the area with him 24 hours/7 days.  they try to rotate the schedule so he doesn't bond too much with just one or two people. they also try to vary male/female handlers.
 fun to watch the little guy grow up.  will look at more pictures later.  going to Seward adds extra time to the drive so I'm beat.
 enjoyed my time in Homer...never a bad time in Homer.  mostly just chilled with the dogs and then shopped and ate.  lots of artists in Homer and Alaska really so there are quite a few little shops in the area.  usually it seems like i buzz in and out of Homer so it was nice to take time to meander through the various galleries.  so I'd walk dogs on a beach for awhile, then hit some shops, walk dogs on a beach, grab a bite in a restaurant.  so the dogs were beat each night.
 it started to rain last night pretty hard.  we still did 3 different walks, two in Homer before we left and one in Seward before i went to check on the walrus.  we all got pretty wet but it was relaxing and beautiful as usual.  not too many pics on the walks today...too wet.  yesterday I'm sure i took loads of dogs on the beach pictures.  
 lupine still blooming and now the fireweed is starting up as well.  always a beautiful drive.
 even dandelions are pretty though...when they aren't in my yard.
 these are still at the Conservation Center.
 was going to stop by there on the way out but it was pretty packed.  they look to have changed the entrance a bit.  will have to check it out another time.
 this day there were a few baby musk ox.  so cute...little puff balls.
 the adults were losing their winter coats still...knitters prize this fur.  it's pretty spendy yarn from what I've seen.
 it was raining this day i was there.  nice to have passes for both this place and the Sealife Center.  i can just come when i feel like it and enjoy.
 when i was in Nome i was finding this fur all over on the brushes and ground where the musk ox had walked...smelled pretty musky...hehe.

 check out that face...:-)
 tot - tongue out Tuesday..
 the pups did great in the car this trip.  we stopped a few times, but after walked they do great chilling in car for a few hours 2-3. still not great eaters out there.  they ate well as soon as we got home though.  good to keep it short.
 the low tides were at odd times so really only able to catch one low tide in the late afternoon.  the other low tide was in the middle of the night. there was always enough beach to play on though.
 pups got some good swimming in.  just saw otters out on the water. no whales or sea lions this trip.
 the pups chased birds a lot....a favorite beach time activity.  they did chase a bald eagle this morning...that could go badly for them one of these days.  today's bald eagle was a young one...it waited until the pups were a few feet away and then it flew off....thankfully.
 gotta get my annual labs drawn in the morning before my Dr appointment so i can't eat until after that.  boo.  I'll be cranky.  may have to take a snack to eat between.
 at at Fat Olives as it's by the Driftwood at Bishops Beach where i stayed. also met a friend for dinner last night at KJ's.
 there are some good places to eat in Homer as well.
 wolf
 bald eagle in Turnigan Arm.
 great little gift shop along the highway. they do these pretty impressive wood carvings. this one is an octopus...very cool.
 i think most of the rest are at University Lake.
 grebes on their nest with some babies.
 don't think I've posted these.  i try to keep track.

 so I'll turn in and get some rest.  tomorrow will be busy i think.
 sitting on one egg still and there are a few babies on the nest.
 easier to see the babies in the one below.
 i think i count 3
 more flowers at the dog park

 baby ducks and baby geese.
 saw some baby swans on the way out to Seward.  too far away for photo's.  saw a bull moose as well and on the way back i saw a moose with a few calf's.
 it was pretty foggy in places on the way back.  just a steady rain the entire day.  just sprinkles when i got home.  will have to mow the lawn as soon as it is dry.  really need to get out the weed whacker thing.
 that thing is pretty powerful....kind spooks me out.

 zipped through today.  i am home safe and had a very relaxing week off of work.  back on Thursday.
thankful for:  A.  safe travels again  B.  visits with baby walrus  C.  my sweet fur companions.