Why I Hate Wind

Hurricane season always brings the memories of the two we experienced during our time in The Philippines. Because the storms came from the Pacific Ocean they were called typhoon rather than hurricane. They still have the same construction.

One of them skirted Clark Air Base, but the other hit us full on. Philippines – Google Maps  Where we were was in Angeles City which was north of Manila. In 1968 Typhoon Ora struck The Philippines as a category 4 with winds of 140 mph. Of course by the time it got to us inland, it had dropped in intensity after moving over land. Regardless it was very powerful when it struck us.

I remember my dad saying he had to get the flight line ready for the storm but would be back home. He was a crew chief and this was two or three days before it’s approach. Thankfully this was in between his TDY trips to Phan Rang, Vietnam and he was able to be there with us while it occurred. I remember all of us spending time trying to cover the windows, getting all of our towels and sheets to use for wet floors. We picked up things that were on the floor and set them on beds. Ridiculous I know but we had no experience with this situation.

I had my own bedroom and felt very possessive over my things, and I fully intended to guard my room from the storm. I was a naïve 13 year old.

It was early in the day when it finally hit us. The sky was typical thunderstorm dark grey/blue. I remember standing outside looking at the clouds. They were startlingly low and moving in dizzy, wind driven swirls. At first there wasn’t much lightning, that came later on.

I recall tree limbs, boards and other debris flying by, carried by the wind in it’s steady increase in strength. The rain went from a steady drizzle, to rain showers to heavy rain shafts that flooded our yard. Behind our house was a ravine about three feet deep, that normally had nothing more than a few inches of water in it, and a railroad track which was submerged by this little creek within an hour or so.

Our street in Josefa subdivision, a dirt road, was covered side to side in water. As the storm gained on us and the heart of it came near the sound of the wind is something I will never forget. To this day, strong winds cause me worry and anxiety. During this time, which now I realize was the eye wall, I watched as the ceiling in my bedroom would lift a foot or so then slam down. Over and over it did this as I worked to keep as much dry as possible while I would stare out at the sky with each lifting.

Being new to this kind of thing when all of a sudden it calmed, I was ecstatic. My sisters and I ran outside and the clouds were all around us but there was patchy sunlight. My dad explained it was the eye of the storm – the middle and there was more coming. I was devastated by this news. I was determined to stand out there and watch it show up.

Unexpectedly the eye wall hit, and I truly mean it was unexpected to the young teen watching. A strong wind whipped across me with enough strength to push me back into our carport. Immediately rain was flying horizontally. Dad yelled for me to come inside and just as I passed him he said the neighbors large storage building flew away. It was later found in pieces a mile away. We gathered together in the living room, all of us soaking wet, the floor with a couple of inches of standing water and sang hymns, prayed, and waited. Sometime during the night Ora left us.

The next day Mom and I took all of our clothes, towels, sheets, curtains etc., on the base to the laundry to clean everything and dry it. We only had an old fashioned wringer washer and clothes line at our house.

I will never forget that experience and I have such empathy for those who have to go through it. Each time there is a storm I have this morbid curiosity about it and end up watching videos of the storms, and the storm surge.   🌀

I hate the wind.

Cheers!

-N

Using Tools to Push Myself

I will be joining other writers unpublished and published in the Great Big Indie Author Launchpad Challenge with the idea of being part of a group of people who, like me, have the goal of writing 1000 words a day for 21 days. I think doing this will put me over the top of completion.

I’m excited for the challenge and look forward to the progress I will make. I have to use the next 10 days to finish the edits on another story so I can hand it off to a beta reader and be unencumbered with any other projects.

Gotta cut these nails

I have included below the link to the challenge below if you want to get onboard.

These nails are a bit too long to type quickly and without errors so they will need to be taken down. They are natural not created by a nail tech. An added bonus for you is the adorable pic of my handsome grandson at Disneyland with McQueen in Radiator Springs. He is my screensaver.

Cheers!

-N

 

https://www.chapterbuzz.com/challenge

Being a recluse

I’m troubled, relishing the aloneness of this evening.

I have times when the presence of other humans is stressful. I would rather write which I have been doing for the last two hours, watch YouTube music videos, and enjoy some good wine while wishing it was 68 degrees outside. We are in the throes of the monsoon season in southern Arizona which, believe it or not is a reprieve from the oppressive 110 degree heat of June.

Dry heat is still hot.

My yard which is nothing like the desert where I live is green and lush now thanks to the rain. I love it, however except for early morning or after dark it is still very warm with humidity like Florida. So I hide rather than enjoying it. At least the wee arid land mosquitoes aren’t too troublesome.

I’m planning to be part of Great Big Indie Author Launchpad Challenge. Starting in September I will begin. I’ve set up my chapter page where I check in and post my progress.

I’m planning to write 1000 words a day for 21 days. It should put me at near completion for my first contemporary fiction. I’ll keep you posted.

Cheers!

-N

Humans 😠

This story moved me because I remember my brave, blessed, beautiful father sharing with me some of his experiences in Vietnam where my dad related a similar experience while stationed at Phan Rang, Vietnam. He was in the USAF and took care of the B57 that were running bombing sorties over North Vietnam. Years later dad and I shared stories of his tour in Vietnam and my experiences as a young teen in the Philippines during the same time.

He told me about an order they had gotten telling them not to approach any Vietnamese children who might be alone walking across the base. It was because the Viet Cong (VC, North Vietnamese) would wrap the children in explosives and once a soft hearted American would come up to one of these little children to find out how to take care of them and the child was instructed to trigger the explosive when this happened.

He said that often these were 2-3 year old females. He was the father of three girls.

If you can handle it, look into the atrocities the Japanese committed against the Chinese in Nanking. The mind of a human who can do this to another human must be a repulsively, nasty, dark, dirty place.

My dad, a man who loved to laugh and took you for face value, suffered from his experiences and knowledge of the hell one human can put another human through.

If you want to support Ephraim and join their army check out their link:

https://strongholdrescue.org/support

Cheers!

-N

I just want to sing

Last night I watched a program about Linda Ronstadt, a Tucson AZ native, called “The Sound of My Voice” and man did it stir me.

When asked about music she said that she just wanted to sing, she loved music and she wanted to be around music and sing. I know exactly what she means.

Another similarity between Linda and me is that when my family got together we would sing. Lots of singing. Hers was the same. My grandmother had a beautiful soprano voice, my grandfather carried a tune in his rough bass/baritone and we all have memories of them singing their love song – harmonizing to each other.

I have a new grandbaby due in January and that little peanut has DNA flooded with vocal music ability from both sides. I can’t wait to sing to and with that wee one.

Once, years ago I auditioned for a band with Linda’s arrangement of “Heat Wave” and booked it! I’ve been told I sound like her, especially when I was younger and could really belt out a ballad. I can still do a good job covering a song, age hasn’t stopped me yet. I’ve always wanted to sing the standards in a little combo, that played in a night club.

I remember when my grandmother was in her 70’s hearing her sing the voice was not as strong but the love for the music was there and she always was in tune.

At the end of the program, watching Linda and her family sing together truly moved me. She had to stop them at one point because she knew, in her mind, the note she wanted to sing, but it wouldn’t come out. The show ended with her finishing the song – hitting the harmony beautifully. I put my hand over my heart as I watched her sing and could see the Parkinson’s tremor in her hands.

Damn that disease for taking the voice of one of the best singers in the world!

Cheers!

-N

Monsoon, Woo Hoo!!!

Lots of people in the Tucson area have been praying to get a real monsoon storm with lots of rain to fill the underwater aquifer and help restore the Santa Catalina Mountains from the Big Horn Fire damage of last year. The mountains were a dull grey brown from the burned vegetation. They looked shrunken and sad.

But then last Friday they got prolonged hammering of rain over the afternoon and evening (we got 1.03″ in fifteen minutes) and “BOOM” they sprung back to their lush beautiful self.

So God heard the outcry of the desert dwellers and said ‘hold my beer!” and it was fabulous and scary.

Areas of Tucson got hit with heavy rain and super strong winds, and there was even a land spout tornado spotted and photographed. Along with this was some wind damage. Hubby and I remarked that we can water plants, run the sprinkler and the yard will struggle, but one – just one – big monsoon rain will change the dull, dry, brown color to me and God’s favorite color – green.

I caught video of the storm just as it hit us, and it was a deluge. This is looking from my back porch.

Cheers!

-N

 

Writing Is Fun

I was talking with a young man who is an English major in college about my writing process. His questions had me examining the way I write, where my voice comes from and how I work story out. I told him it wasn’t just getting a good story idea and plotting the chapters, but looking at who the people are, how they got to the place they were when the story begins and what is the real truth of character.

Just like real humans, story human’s reactions and perspectives are based on their life experiences – even if those are made up by the author.

It’s sort of like a PR guy who comes up with an identity that is appealing and interesting, and will make the celebrity into a money making character. The celebrity grabs onto this identity and runs with it.

That’s what happens when I come up with a fictional character. I reach a point where there is reality attached to them. I know what they sound like when they speak, I see their mannerisms and habits. I’ve learned their hopes, faults, mistakes and desires.

Creating my world filled with these people I’ve discovered in my mind thrills me. It’s what I like best about writing. The research is fun, the discovery of plot and story stokes my creative side. The beauty of it gives my imagination what it needs to grow.

Writing is fun.

Cheers!

-N

Scent and Memories

I have begun a study in fragrance. My collection of essential oils is growing, and I’m learning about the interaction and relationships that come into play when developing a specific aroma. Blending, exploring, a little of this, 2-3 drops of that and you are remembering a walk in the forest or by the sea.

Fascinating.

I have my besties whom I have created fragrances for, that not only make me think of them, but I hope would give them a feeling they need for peace and balance. God is amazing in the way he made the natural world to compliment his treasured souls inhabiting this planet.

I remember during a trip to the Big Island of Hawaii, when hubby and I were riding a scooter and drove through clouds of scent. I had never experienced that outside of walking between the honeysuckle vines by my front door. On each side of us blooming plants climbed the sides of the volcanic rock lining the road. Visually it was stunning and then to get the whiff of strong natural fragrance was overwhelming. The combination was magical.

I love the pine forests with the pleasantly pungent aroma of the pines that welcomes you to the haven of mountains. It’s wonderful, especially beside a mountain lake.

A book I was recommended and have started reading is “Fragrant” by Mandy Aftel. It is informative in an easily read form, and the details are necessities in developing the understanding of the evolution of scent.

Did you know cinnamon is the king of spices?

Cheers!

-N

 

 

A New Fascination

A young friend of mine was wearing a homemade scent that smelled of patchouli. I love patchouli probably due to my 70’s pot smoking days. I do love scent, like incense and scented candles. Hello. Light bulb moment!!💡

So…

I’ve been my typical self, delving full speed into researching essential oils, aroma families, and homemade soaps, perfumes and lotions. What a blast!!

I have this little note book I’ve been making copious notes in it as I learn. I’ve discovered the world of personal perfumers. The more I learn the more I like the idea of doing this for myself and perhaps for others. I woke this morning thinking of an aroma idea. Perfume, soap and lotion groups of specific nature fragrance blends. These can be made animal free and organic which makes me happy.

Don’t get me wrong I’m still writing, sewing, etc., but my mind is having fun exercising and growing with new knowledge.

We will see. I will blog about my progress and products developed – who knows I might make some money with this.

Cheers!

-N

PS: Don’t believe it when a company says it doesn’t practice age discrimination. 😒

Our Cool Yearly Visitor

We’ve had a teenage girl living with us for five days. I can honestly say it is a different world!

First of all she is the kind of teenager you want every teen to be like. She is kind, interested, funny, and respectful. She is affectionate and she figures out the dynamics of living with us and being with us. This is amazing since we are her great Aunt and great Uncle, so our age difference is considerable.

She has confidence in herself and yet she has a charming shyness that her uncle and I adore, and want to protect. She challenges without being rude or disrespectful. What I truly appreciate about her is her lack of interest in being a Kardashian which is so typical of most girls her age (13). She would rather smell like horses than perfume. I have to get on her case a bit to brush her hair or get a shower. Don’t get me wrong, she isn’t sloppy or dirty. She just doesn’t think about it.

So refreshing.

She has goals, and plenty of interests, and during the various trips we’ve taken during her visits with us, she has put her best into learning and discovering each destination. For example this year seeing her reactions to things she encountered in Tucson visitor staples like the Flandrau Planetarium, Pima Air and Space Museum, Titan Missile Historic Site and Sabino Canyon Recreation Area shows she is open to learn. Rather than showing boredom with these locations, she absorbed the knowledge available.

Our sweet niece.

She visits us for about a week at the end of each school year. This is our 4th year hosting her and I love that she still wants to hang out with us. It may not last much longer. So we are taking advantage of the opportunities.

So… I just gave her a bowl of homemade whipped cream and a bottle of chocolate syrup! What can I say, she deserves it and earned it. We got hugs and so did she.

She loves hugs!

Cheers!

-N