1. When were you last ‘on a mountaintop’? You may answer in the literal or figurative sense.
I’m going with the literal on this. Saturday. Yes, less than a week ago. I went to Charlottesville to see my almost 91-year-old Grandma. We went to visit my grandfather (and great grandmother, great aunt/uncle, and a cousin I never knew I had). They are all buried on Monticello mountain. Actually, they’re all buried in the same ten foot section on Monticello mountain (yes, that same Monticello mentioned in last week’s Hodgepodge). Yep, that’s right, in the light snow we took a not-very-mobile nonagenarian to climb down a mountainside in order to visit dead relatives. I’m not much on the ‘come see me when I’m gone’ practice, but it means a lot to her, so we go when I am there to drive her.
2. Do you establish and maintain a strict budget in your household? What is one piece of financial advice you would offer someone just starting out on their own?
I’m trying to. It’s hard when you live on $0.67 between paychecks. Seriously. It’s down to the penny. But there is a light at the end of the tunnel, I’m sure of it. Just frugal living!
3. Cherries-yay or nay? Cherry pie, cherry cola, black forest cake, or a scoop of Ben and Jerry’s Cherries Garcia…pick one.
Yes! Absolutely yes. Bing cherries. Ranier cherries. Tart cherries. Sweet cherries. Dried cherries. Sour cherry candy. Ben and Jerry’s Cherry Garcia FroYo. But my two favorites are probably black cherry ice cream (reminds me of my Papa) and my nana’s recipe for Tart Cherry Cobbler. Served warm with vanilla bean ice cream. Every now and again I get a hankering and make it. And can eat half of it in one sitting if I put forth a modicum of effort.
4. Should you ever discuss religion or politics with people you don’t know?
That’s kind of a touchy subject, isn’t it? I would say yes, but it depends on the people. If I’m never going to see them again, then sure why not. If you ask me about my faith, then absolutely I’ll tell you. There are subjects that I don’t talk about often, even with people who I’m good friends with, because they’re hot button issues (does God love my gay friends? yes, He does. Do I think homosexuality is a sin? No. Do I think that women can be leaders in the church? Yes. Do I think that God loves Republicans and hates Democrats? You must be kidding. What a stupid question.) Sadly enough, I think I’m more willing to be open and honest and lay it all on the line with someone I don’t know–and will probably not see again–than I am with those I know and love. And when it comes to politics? Well, that’s almost always a no. Mostly because I work in a two person office and the other half, while on a whole different school of thought from me, loves to take every opportunity to knock our government, our leaders, our laws, and the failure of our society. And I refuse to rise to the bait, participate in the conversation, or feed his soap box. I love him dearly, but I can only take so much. Trust me, on November 7, 2012, I did everything I could to make sure he was out of the office all day so that I wouldn’t have to hear his opinions, complaints, and predictions on the ruination of the country. Let me put it this way–he still has a framed campaign poster from when Ronald Reagan campaigned hanging in his office. Everyone that has come after has been out to ruin the world. And heaven forbid you point out that Reagan was once an outspoken Democrat before switching sides . . . . That’s blasphemy.
5. When you take a road trip do you prefer to be the driver or the passenger? Where were you headed on your last road trip?
Driver. I get carsick too easy when I am passenger. Come to find out it has to do with bad allergy/sinus issues. Road trip? Must have been my trip to Pennsylvania Memorial Day 2012. Which means I need another!
6. If we peeked inside your closet, what color would we say is most prevalent?
Black. I wear black pants every day Labor Day to Memorial Day, and then have the top half black as well at least three days a week.
7. Who’s your favorite senior citizen and why are they special?
Oh there are so many. Even if I stick with the non-family, currently living variety. I grew up with so many in the church that are a joy, an inspiration, and a delight to have known as a part of my life. At the funeral that I was at two weeks ago, I was told before I sat down that I had to go hug Mrs. Walker. She was my Acteens leader when I was ten, and still asks about me. And remembers where I am attending, that I work with children, and makes my day when she shares love. Growing up, going to church with my nana, I had to make sure I gave Mrs. She-Shepperson (don’t know why I added the She, but that’s what I called her) a hug. She always had Smarties in her pocket, come to think of it. There was Sylvia, who I also saw a few weeks ago who made sure to come hug me. She’s got to be in her 80s now, and that beauty mark she paints on every day hasn’t changed a bit. I feel so blessed that I was able to grow up with such influences in my life, and taught that there is nothing wrong with learning from and socializing with my elders. It’s the one thing I truly wish I was able to do at the church that I currently attend. I feel like there is a substantial division of the ages, and not much intermingling. And it’s a shame for the younger generations.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
Oh, I always have random thoughts. SO MANY random thoughts. Today’s sampling: (1) I had my iPod on shuffle today. Hold Me Now by the Thompson Twins played. Love that song. Never understood why they were the Thompson Twins when it was a trio. (2) Had a birthday dinner for a friend at Plaza Azteca tonight. It was just meh. I’ve decided the homemade guacamole is the only thing worth eating there, the trots that come after everything else are not worth it. TMI? (3) Did anyone else watch Castle on Monday night? Ho.Lee.Cow. (4) For some reason, Levi is preferring to grab a towel from the dirty clothes hamper and dragging it to the back hallway for his lounging. This instead of the sofa or his bed in the living room. I guess he just wanted a change of scenery? (5) Last night I didn’t fall asleep until after 4am. Which made the 615 alarm truly a problem. Here’s hoping I get a great night’s sleep . . . . and finally, (6) I know I don’t know her personally, but can I tell you how excited I am about Robin Roberts returning to GMA on Wednesday morning? I wrote a very personal story here about why I was so moved about her struggle with MDS and her fight. And as I write this on Tuesday evening, on the one year anniversary of my friend’s passing from this same horrible thing, I celebrate the triumph that is Robin’s return, and know my friend is cheering her on from heaven. And while she’s watching, she’s closing with the prayer that Robin says has led her family through the years every day:
The Light of God surrounds me.
The Love of God enfolds me.
The Power of God protects me.
The Presence of God watches over me.
Wherever I am, God is.