I am an old soul. It is a good feeling to know exactly what and who you are and how you determined your own point of view in this world. The initial encounters in my nursing career were always beneficial in understanding myself. After graduating from college and moving on to hospital nursing, it occurred to me I enjoyed one on one time with my patients that were geriatrics the most. I loved hearing an 85 year old’s perspective on life. Getting older can be a joy. This was a good lesson to learn early on.
WWII Veteran Roy McGinnis turns 96 years young today. Feel free to wish him Happy Birthday in the comments and I will be sure to pass them on. My step-dad Roy as you can imagine has truly been a shining example for any young person to emulate with his striking career in the military along with his civilian time as the Director of Veterans Affairs for the State of Alabama.
The leaves had turned and within six weeks Christmas would have come and gone. Rolling my suitcase off the bus toward the slippery Seattle street in good spirits, my eyes glistening with excitement, I focused on the ocean within my view. After all it was Thanksgiving and my friend promised a wonderful meal for the holidays. What she would do for me is what I had done for her over the years, as my memories conjured up my kitchen with savory smells that my taste buds couldn’t wait for again.
Manhandling my heavy luggage, staring at the lights dancing off the buildings near the Puget Sound’s emerald waters, I could see the Bremerton Ferry awaiting for me. I arrived a couple of hours early bought my fare and rested on a construction site zone bench, where waiting for my friend to arrive was my goal.
Time went by rapidly, but it had been some time before I heard from her and all to knowing work at the hospital was the culprit. Not a surprise and it did not bother me in the least.
The ferry dock information lady stared at me as I asked her a question.
“Where is the best clam chowder?”
Undeniably she said pointing to Ivars, “right there!”
Yes. Of course.
Suitcase in tow, I decided best to get a bite. It was a good thing as my two hour wait turned to four. What was so interesting besides being physically tired, I enjoyed every minute of that beautiful scenery as dark got darker and the afternoon turned to evening.
It was late, but she arrived and off we went from the ferry to her car parked on the other side of the sound. Driving those dark roads, we reminisced of days gone by and how we both loved the tall pine and fir trees in our view as we weaved the curved asphalt road. I was mesmerized by this part of earth I call home. Yet a part of me was lonely. It was my first Thanksgiving without my sons in 25 years.
When we arrived at my girlfriend’s home, she announced,
“Would you be OK if we have our Thanksgiving meal on Friday?”
Studying her tired face and all to knowing that feeling I made sure to remind her the most important part of hanging out was that we weren’t alone. She smiled and agreed.
Long before she and I would find ourselves together this night, I could not help to think long before in the heavenly it was decided how we would be a help to each other in the present. No Thanksgiving meal on the actual holiday, but my day would not be spent alone and the ferry made sure of that.
President Richard Nixon was a part of my army brat life when he visited Hawaii on his way to China for a pivotal strategic trip. Dad took this photo at a military parade on February 20, 1972. He was a Command Sargent Major whose job entailed facilitating VIP’s. I was in a unique position to view history in the making because of my dad’s position. Nixon’s goal for this trip was to improve relations with communist China.
I am in love with this crazy, wonderful son of mine. Today was a good day.
The irony of my title is fascinating on several levels. It reminds me perhaps most of having a sense of control. With a head’s up on a situation that needs a thoughtful answer, I can usually work on a responsible solution. When my autistic son Luke was hospitalized , I was out-of-state and felt out of control of the circumstances. Fortunately I do not have a learned helplessness mentality. My fighting spirit keeps me positive and the idea of developing a problem-solving strategy to deal with life’s difficulties is no stranger to me.
A winter holiday on Oahu could not come any quicker with our brutal rainy Seattle. I have arrived and am happy to be on island time. Since I lived on the island in the early 70’s, I find it comforting being on this tropical paradise.
I can tell you my time in Hawaii is always a favorite and try to visit annually. This year I toured the Iolani Palace for the first time. It was everything I thought it would be and highly recommend it with a tour guide.
In a majority of the 1900’s, the palace was utilized by state government for office space. It was practically ruined. Also, the original Hawaii 5-0 show shot scenes inside. Police Chief Steve McGarret’s office was the King’s bedroom.
In 1978 the palace was dedicated and opened for tourism. Here are a few shots to entice you to come see it. It was like walking through Europe’s fine castles. Much influence can be seen from the Victorian Era.
Read where this chair was found!