Sunday, January 15, 2017

Corks and Memories.

When I open a bottle of wine, no matter what the event I always write on the cork the date, what the event and have whoever is with me at the time sign the cork.

Today I took out all my corks out of the vase and read them all. Reading these corks is in a sense my own personal time machine. I was taken back to that event, thinking about the people that I shared a meal with who are no longer in my life, but at one time we sat down to a meal with great company where laughter ensued and our zest for life was evident in that one evening.

Reminiscing with the people who are still in my life, sending them pictures of their cork and remembering that dinner party and how midnight came too quickly and another successful dinner party had to come to an end.

Too often in life we focus on what we don't have and the negativity that surrounds us. We forget that more often than not at one time we sat down to a gathering and feast and left the cares of the world at the door. We celebrated life, friendship, love and good wine.

Life is too short to not have that dinner party and open that bottle of wine. Create your own time machine, just don't forget to invite me to the party.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Why I am angry.

The US elections are finally over. In the 26 years I have lived in America this has by far been the most dirties, misinformed election I have ever witnessed.

I am still in shock and disbelief that a country chose a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, xenophobic man to run this country. Absolutely no qualifications in the political arena, which begs the question, a man less qualified to get the job over a woman who surpassed the qualifications asked of her?

This election has taught me that people are so willing to read Wiki Leaks, listen to the media, post meme's as gospel and quote stupidity verbatim without doing any research. Research such as bills and laws passed, what that person did, benefits to the country etc.

People are posting that they are not racist etc by voting for Trump, but I ask this? 

If your daughter's boss groped her inappropriately, refused to give her the promotion she deserved because she was a female, ridiculed her for being Christian/Muslim,Jewish/Hindu and called her fat, but was running for President you would still vote for him because he represents your party?

That is why so many women are angry.

You voted for a man who on record has the highest disregard for women.

You voted for a man who has multiple failed businesses.

You voted for a man who refused to release his tax returns, but yet in all other elections not of your party you yelled from the roof tops it was the American right to know what the Presidential candidates were earning.

You voted for a man who created hatred for Muslims, the same people we helped free from Sadam Hussein.

You voted for a man who wants to build a wall.

I was born and raised in a country where apartheid ruled. The United States and many other countries imposed sanctions against South Africa until apartheid was demolished. I witnessed how the minorities were treated. I witnessed people of color being brutally abused and put in jail for not having an up to date passbook. My father's kidnapping and murder was based on hate.

I saw first hand the result of hate and fear. My family voted in every election in South Africa against the party of the majority rule because they believed in equality for all. They didn't vote party line to make their lives better. 

I never intended to live in America, but when I married an American I was grateful that I could raise our son in a country where he didn't have to fear for his life on a daily basis. He could play in the yard and run around the neighborhood with friends and not be locked in a home that would give Fort Knox a run for its money.

I suffer from PTSD because of my father's murder and what I have read and seen today in the past two years of this campaign, takes me back to those days of myself and my siblings screaming and begging the police to leave our nanny alone. 

I have a peace in knowing that one day when my grandchildren ask me who I voted for in this election I will proudly say I voted for equality, acceptance, love and for the coming together of a country.

I do fear for this country. The beast has been awakened and it has reared its ugly head.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Where Are You From?

Cape Town, South Africa

Dear Mr. Self Righteous:

It was a pleasure to meet you at my favorite brewery this evening, my son and I enjoyed speaking with you and your friend about beers, it was when you asked me where I was from because of my accent that things went downhill quicker than a bowling ball down Mt. Everest.

When I told you I was from South Africa and that I had been in the States since 1990 your response of "So you got out just in time" took me a little by surprise. I wasn't quite sure by what you meant. You must have gathered that by my what the fuck was that question look on my face, the need to clarify that I left just before apartheid ended insinuating that as a white person I was getting out before the ANC took over. I gathered that from your further condescending remarks that you littered the air with.

Please allow me now to tell you my story. I was born and raised in a small village outside Cape Town. My family is Portuguese, not from Portugal, but from the island of Madeira. Google it. My grandparents immigrated to South Africa. I was born in 1966 and for my entire life in South Africa I was raised during the apartheid era. Let me quickly go back to the Portuguese part and tell you how we were treated by the same people who treated the blacks in South Africa so despicably. Pretty much the same a few Americans treat the people from Mexico, like shit.

You didn't need to be self righteous and opinionated about apartheid, I lived it. I saw what it did. I saw the hate it created. You see Mr. SR because of that hate once apartheid ended that hate turned to violent crime. My father was a victim to that violent crime. It didn't matter that my father was the most kind, giving, generous person in the community, that his employee's had been with him for many years, and yes 90% were black. What the people saw who kidnapped my father and violently murdered him, was that he was white.

South Africa is in absolute turmoil since apartheid ended. The daily murder rate would boggle your little mind. When I had mentioned this fact your response with "I haven't seen anything on the news" just showed how unaware you are with what is going on in the rest of the world.

It took me a long time to become a US Citizen, the process is long, drawn out and at some times quite humiliating oh and let's not forget the cost, close to $10,000 because I had to get an attorney during the Green Card process. I bet you thought that just because I married an American I automatically became a citizen. I chose to become a citizen so that I could have a voice at every single election and not just the big one, my city and state elections included.

Did it make you feel better to be so self righteous? Did you Facebook post how you told some South African woman your thoughts on her country and apartheid? Did I tell you my thoughts on your countries current situation? Did I mention the Native Americans?

I did not Mr. SR because I know you didn't have anything to do with that, my assumption was that you were a funny guy having a beer with your friend who was visiting from Europe.

As my mother always said, you know what they say about assuming, although in this case the ass is all yours.



Sunday, July 10, 2016

On Your Phone Again.

Recently when we were in Yakima we not only went wine tasting we went beer tasting as well.  Our phones have the beer app Untappd. This app allows you to post the beer you are drinking, rate it, take a picture and hopefully get a badge. *side note* It is all about the badges for me.

When we first get our flight of tasters we get on our phones and start putting in the information. Last weekend as we were doing this at a brewery I looked up and noticed a couple looking at us and I thought they were probably thinking "Look at those people, on their phones, not talking to each other.", but they couldn't have been further from the truth.

Logging onto Untappd has actually become quite the family event, the beer olympics so to speak. We have to see who is going to earn a badge and who is leading in check-ins and distinct beers. I am not leading in check-ins and distinct beers, I know you're all shocked, but I do hold the honor in most badges collected.

Some people may think it a silly thing to do, and that is okay, but for us it is something we do and our interaction is just as much as it would be without our phones.

So when you next see a party of 3 on their phone at a brewery, tasting beers, typing quickly, laughing and pumping their fist in the air when a badge is downloaded, don't assume they are not connecting with each other, they very much are.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Being Kind to Yourself.

Today I was asked a rather strange question by my therapist, but one that really has had me pondering, hence here I am writing a blog post at 11:00 pm.  I was asked as to when was the last time I felt beautiful?

The question was asked after I had made a self derogatory comment about myself and how I compared myself to someone else who currently haunts my life. I had to think about the question and the answer was in 2009. 2009 When we lived in Utah, when I weighed a lot less, when life was so much simpler and happier, when I was so secure in what I had, I felt so beautiful. I was told I was beautiful.

Then life happened and Hashimoto's disease became the bane of my existence. Everything in my life spiraled. I gave away the majority of my shoes that made me feel beautiful. I placed my clothes that made me feel beautiful in storage because they no longer fit. I was no longer told I was beautiful.

This evening I scrolled through posts on Facebook and Twitter and read about shootings, political ramblings, how to be thinner, how to be richer, people celebrating 40 years of marriage, people getting ready to be married and the range of emotions were like riding on a roller coaster. I hate roller coasters.

Today was not a good day. I was not kind to someone who has been a part of my life for many years. We all have those days where words come out and our brain is back peddling, but they are out and...

I know many of you personally that read my blog and I have followed all your ups and downs and I know you can all relate. Yesterday a friend came over with wine. I love friends who bring wine.

Tonight I took out my watercolors and attempted to paint lavender as a reminder of our wonderful weekend in Yakima. I am watching reruns (again for the kajillionith time) of Murder she Wrote. My endocrinologist has me on another new medication. I got on the scale and have lost a whole pound. I had a friend text me from work letting me know she is thinking of me.

But what made me feel the most loved tonight was when my 24 year old son came up to me this evening, put his arm around me and made me laugh through my tears.

We are all going through something and I want you all to know that I think you all are wonderful, kind, funny, lovable, huggable, and most of all some of the most beautiful people in my life and being surrounded by you all, makes me feel beautiful.