My biggest UP is that my nearly nonegenarian Aunt is doing much better after her bad fall last weekend. She is amazing at her ripe age of 89 to be healing rather quickly, at least the facial bruises and swelling which were pretty grotesque on Sunday are looking a lot better. She scraped nearly all the skin off her thin little arms ( older folks’ skin becomes almost transparent from the thinness of it) but her arms are healing too, wrapped, mummy-like, in great swaths of gauze bandages over other dressings. Amazingly… but not surprisingly (she is one tough little lady)… there were no broken bones or even compression fractures after the beating she took from the fall. This is almost unheard of in people her age; so many break their hips in a fall and it is downhill from there, but she will be released from the hospital and go to a rehab and transition room ( in a few days) at the facility where she lived in her own apartment. I think she is a little frightened of the prospect of returning to her own apartment now after this shocking accident…..she talks about going into the living center right away where she can be cared for and not have to worry about anything. But family members want to take it one day at a time and see if she can live again in her assisted living place with lots of help and services that can be acquired there. I spent yesterday with her at the hospital and she is happy to have company even though she feels comfortable saying to me, that we should just be quiet so she can take a nap! I am glad she feels so comfortable about saying that and I am happy to do whatever she needs at the moment. I fed her some lunch yesterday because both her arms are not only swathed in gauze but also intubeated with IV needles and other hospital necessities. She remarked that she had fed me a lot of meals when I was a baby and now we were reversing it. We both chuckled.
UP: the warm rather humid weather is making the plants grow quickly and our "salad garden" in a former flower planter is almost ready for harvest. I can already taste that delicous bacon-dressing and spinach salad I make each year when the spinach matures to the salad plate point. There is also two kinds of salad lettuce and Swiss chard looking good enough to eat soon in the same container garden. One hill of "Turks’ Turban" squash is emerging. The Cinderella pumpkins have not sprouted and neither have the Easter Egg gourds or the Birdhouse gourds. I gave up on them and cultivated the soil to let the Turk’s Turban alone grow and thrive. Win some, lose some each year of gardening. There are signs of a big raspberry crop too….if the birds do not get them first. Also we might get out first good crop of apples from trees that have been there for several years without yielding anything that could be called significant. The trouble is… birds like Blue Jays and Brown Thashers think the apples are for them alone and began eating them as soon as they emerge as tiny green bumps that would turn into apples if these pesky birds left them alone. We can only hope there might be enough of them for both birds and people this year.
DOWN: Our good friends who farm near Colfax, ND got inundated by heavy rain this week. Their farm is not very far from Abercrombie which was overwhelmed with water a couple of days ago and now we learn that our friend’s fields are in jeapardy and under water. Such a gamble is farming around here and everywhere, I guess. The corn may be totally lost in the overland flooding from 6-7 inches of rain on Monday and Tuesday. I really feel sorry for our friends…the water is also threatening their home and its basement. MBF drove there and reported that it looks like a vast sea around those towns SE of Fargo now.
DOWN: on national news I have read about the GOP senator from Nevada (name slips my mind) who has admitted to an extra-marital affair with a staffer and has resigned his committee positions in the Senate. It is interesting that when a GOP/conservative elected representative or senator gets into some sort of moral or ethical trouble,(Senator Robert Packwood for mouth- kissing a staffer or Senator Trent Lott for joking with old Strom Thurmond at a birthday party)………. there is usually a quick admission and some sort of resignation(s) from positions of power. On the other hand, when a Democrat/Liberal senator or represenative gets into the same sort of moral/ethical morass there is usually stone-walling on the part of the Party and usually no resignations or loss of committee chairmanships or assignments. Cases in point recently and no so recently: William Jefferson, a southern state representative to the US congress was found to have big bucks hidden in a home freezer which involved dishonest campaign contributions , et. al. but he has not resigned from anything. I believe that House Leader Nancy Pelosi reluctantly finally stripped him of some of his assignments on committees but he is still serving as the Representative and was even re-elected by constituents who apparently do not recognize a criminal when they see one. John Murtha is also in hot water on ethical matters and Pelosi herself has stonewalled and will not offer evidence about her accusation that the CIA lied to her about national security matters including the subject of torture of Terrorist prisoners. John Boehner, the minority leader of the House, is keeping Pelosi’s feet to the fire but it will probably continue to be stonewalled. But there are no admissions or no resignations for Liberals!
Another just-out bit of news about Rhode Island Representative Patrick Kennedy….he has announced that he is going back to a rehab center again after making about 3 years (an an election) since he went to a place to get "help" for his various addictions (cocaine, various prescription drugs and alcohol at various times). The last round was after he crashed his car into a Capitol Hill barricade about 2 a.m. in the morning and told police he was rushing to a vote in the House (!) which of course, was untrue. Lying comes so easily! An article about Rep Patrick Kennedy said this in the first paragraph by national writer Mac Johnson:
"Ah the circle of life…every day the sun rises and every spring buds blossom and every few years Representative Patrick Kennedy enters rehab. Truly there is a season—and in the case of the Rhode Island true Representative, Patrick "Patches" Kennedy ( as in percocet, nicotine, methadone patches) manages to make it about 3 years, between elections, between trips to rich-kid rehab centers."
A cynical statement no doubt…..but what about the people of Rhode Island who have not been fairly represented by Kennedy who has spent almost as much time in rehab centers as he has in the House of Representatives? These people are dumb enough to re-elect him with political prodding from their neighboring state, Massachussetts, which seems to specialize in corrupt politics and is represented, eternally , by other members of the Kennedy family.
The situation is definitely a big DOWN but the people of Rhode Island fail to recognize it as such and keep re-electing Patrick Kennedy in spite of little representation from him.
I used to be glad I was part of a state where corruption/ and/ our elections were seemingly crystal clear and pure and not ethically-challenged…. but after the election of last fall which is still not resolved (the Senate race) I think I am beginning to know what it might be like to be from Rhode Island.
At least the UPS and DOWN are a bit balanced for this time anyway.