The Night Before

Blogging is an interesting endeavor.  Sometimes composing a post is as simple as pie (store bought), other days it’s not that easy. Today, I must admit, falls into the latter category. To say the least, it’s been a tumultuous 7 days here in the east. As you know, I arrived in NY just a day or two before Hurricane Sandy struck. We are all aware of the devastation the storm left in it’s wake. Although power has been restored to lower Manhattan and a good portion of mass transit, including many subway lines are in service again, a week later  there are still hundreds of thousands without power, water, gasoline, a safe place to lay their heads at night and even warm clothes. To add insult to injury in a most literal sense, the forecast predicts another storm moving  towards the east coast on Wednesday. My thoughts and prayers are with all those still struggling in the aftermath of Sandy and I’m sure that all of you, my wonderful compassionate readers, feel the same.

A friend sent me an email a few days ago in reference to my post about New Yorkers being incredibly resilient.

She included this photo with the caption “I guess this is what you meant about New Yorkers”

I loved the photo and thought, YES! This is exactly what I meant, and shared the photo on Facebook as well as Twitter. The response, as you would imagine, was overwhelmingly positive, but there were actually a few people who got darn right snarky about it. According to them, this photo was taken in New Jersey, not NYC.  Apparently, there are always going to be a few people who just miss the point, which I find a little sad. I thought the photo was about people being kind, resourceful and helping others,  not about a postal code.

And another thing…

Tomorrow, as we ALL KNOW is Election Day in the United States. I, for one, cannot wait for this, equally ugly storm, to be over. I don’t care to engage in political discourse on my blog, or even in real life to be honest-it’s just the way I was raised. I also like to think of “Slim Paley” as being a pleasant escape from the negativity we are bombarded with daily, so I’d just like to say this;  Whatever the outcome, by Wednesday morning 50% of this country is going to be very disappointed, many even devastated, which is also truly sad. So let’s all try to be compassionate and GRACIOUS on Wednesday. After all, it’s not arms and legs, it’s politics.

Back to “normal” posts in a day or two, I promise!

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Top photo of flower via HughStewartGallery.com

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Ten Things I Know on This Birthday

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deep rose roses

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Ten Things I know for sure on this Birthday

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1. I know there aren’t too many things that give me more pleasure than having the luxury and time to arrange flowers from my own garden.

Mother Nature is The best therapist.

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2. I know I’d love to keep a gardening diary but probably never will.

Instead, I’ll diarize (I say it’a word and it’s MY birthdayvicariously through Monty Don’s beautiful books, the newest of which I’m eagerly awaiting delivery of;

“Gardening at Longmeadow”

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From “Gardening at Longmeadow” by Monty Don.

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3. As my birthday coincides with my newly official “Empty Nester” status, I know the future is ripe with new opportunities.

Not quite sure what they are yet, but I’m certain they’ll be presenting themselves in short order.

Or, perhaps I must go in search of them…

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4. I know my passport(s) are buffed and ready at a moment’s notice.

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mountain climbing, Sri Lanka

My fellow climbers at the summit of Adam’s Peak, Sri Lanka.

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Travel is, without a doubt, one of the greatest pleasures in my life.

except for the packing.

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5. Speaking of multiple passports, this will be the FIRST time in my life and the first time our entire family will all be casting a vote for the Presidency of the United States.

And I know my vote COUNTS. :)

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6. I know that getting up early and running the other morning felt great.

Well, not the actual running part. but making the effort to do something so out of character felt wonderful.

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7. I know that I was truly inspired by the incredible athletes and their stories this summer and I hope to hold on to that inspiration until the next Olympics.

Or, at least until hockey season.

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8. I know that all my laugh lines are well earned but considering how funny my friends and family are I could actually look a lot worse.

Besides, I’d rather laugh than be totally smooth.

I’d like smooth hair though for my birthday.

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9. I know that after telling myself I was too old for leather leggings last year I now have a new pair hanging in my closet.

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Apparently I got younger over the summer :)

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10. I know that I’d like to try writing a book and if I put that thought out into the Universe it might actually come to fruition.

  I might just need the pressure of saying it to DO it.

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11. I know that every few years my husband will happily re-watch “Withnail & I ” with me and we’ll laugh our asses off and I love that about him.

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favourite film

“Withnail & I”

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Slim Paley

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12.I know I have to stop and smell those roses.

THAT, I really do know.

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13. And I still know that math is not my strong suit.

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14. I feel a bit like a kid with a brand new binder and a shiny case of sharpened pencils on the first day of school-

I want to shoot for straight “A’s” this semester!

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Lastly, for those of you that missed this on my Slim FB page;

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Is this me, you, US or what?!

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Citizen Slim

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Slim Paley photo

Drum roll, if you please…

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A bit of a personal post today, but this was a big week for me, I needn’t tell you.

Well, actually, I do need to tell you as you’ll hardly be reading about it in the press-

I finally became a U.S. Citizen!

I drove all the way to downton (oops-someone has a certain TV show on the brain) downtown LA and passed my test with flying colours just before the Christmas holidays. They give you a CD with the 100 questions that might be asked in the test, which I listened to all the way there. Ask me any question about American Indians and old presidents.

 Then I managed to steer clear of racketeering, drug dealing, gambling (unless you count EBAY) terrorist plotting and prostitution long enough to make it to the swearing-in ceremony held this week in Ponoma, CA.

Er, maybe that’s Pomona, CA.  (Oh Hellooo-It wasn’t on the test)

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My friend was so sweet-she made me this adorable red, white & blue camellia just for my Big Day.

I almost wore Angelina Jolie’s red & white number from the Golden Globes-phew, dodged another bullet there…

Honestly, is she even from this planet? so beautiful

Alas, no blue. (tattoos don’t count)

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Slim Paley photo

It  was just me, and 3,497 other folks all lined up at a fairground.

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Yes, believe it or not, this is right outside the door you go in for the ceremony

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Slim Paley photo

 An Ellis Island of cell phones.

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The President tapped it out with all of us

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and I must admit, I got slightly verklempt(sp?) when they played the video of Lee Greenwood singing his “God Bless the U.S.A” song (especially the “and I’d gladly stand up” chorus)

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Driving home in the afterglow of achievement,  3 things occurred to me;

For the first time since my sons were born, the whole family will travel together with matching passports.

We will ALL  be eligible to vote in the next election, 2 of us for the first time! (God, hope I don’t get any hanging chads or questions about Ponomona)

and lastly,

I can now qualify to be a contestant on “Survivor!”  Watch out Creepy Russell!

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And just in case you were wondering…

The plastic flags they hand out ARE Made In The U.S.A.

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Cheers!

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