Tag Archives: death

Health or bust.

 

In the midst of a viral apocalypse, it’s hard not to think about your health.

Am I safe? Will I be infected?

And if so, should I be binge watching Netflix… or picking out a granite color and font?

 

 

Thankfully I’m a very healthy person. One might say boringly so.

I’ve never broken a bone.

I’ve never had the flu, an ear infection, strep throat, the measles, pink eye or a cavity.

I still have my tonsils, appendix and wisdom teeth.

Until I was 48 years old, I’d never had the chicken pox either.

And trust me…. when I caught them from the husband because he came down with shingles?

I was not a happy camper.

 

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No, those aren’t pimples….

And if you think it sucked having chicken pox as a kid? Try doing it when you’re almost 50. It’s not only Hella uncomfortable…. but dangerous to boot.

Matter of fact, it was such an oddity to present at that age, all the doctors and nurses stopped by the exam room to take a peek.

 

 

You know all those times in your life when it was nice to feel special?

That wasn’t one of them.

But aside from that week of polka dotted misery, I’ve been blissfully healthy.

Heck, I’d never even been in the hospital until a few years ago…. and naturally, everything that could go wrong?

Did.

Quite spectacularly.

Because if you’re going to screw something up?

My motto is don’t do it halfway.

 

I’m suddenly glad that I don’t drink coffee.

 

Because I saw this in the store a while back….

 

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And have to admit it was a little frightening.

 

 

For anyone interested in a life threatening coffee experience, you can find it here.

 

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Their advertising tag line is “It will wake the dead”…. so please be careful who you give it to.

The world has enough overly caffeinated zombies as is.

 

Window – 1. Bird – 0.

 

We live in the country with a large back yard…

 

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A field….

 

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and some woods.

 

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This leads to a lot of avian visitors.

Some of whom sadly commit suicide on our windows.

I wasn’t here when this particular bird went splat, but it did leave me a rather prominently placed clue in our bedroom.

 

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A perfect dead bird body print.

 

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Complete with wings.

 

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RIP little one.

 

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Did you know… a challenge.

 

So the last time I did one of these quite a few people knew what I know, and that’s disappointing.

So I’m upping my game, reaching deep into the grey matter to find some heretofore unknown tidbits because….

 

 

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Did you know….

Hedgehogs were called urchins in medieval times?

The first recorded use of the word “hedgehog” wasn’t until the 15th century.

 

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Did you know…

In France you can marry a dead person?

Article 171 of the French civil code states, “The President of the Republic may, for grave reasons, authorize the celebration of the marriage where one of the future spouses is dead.”

Maybe it’s just me, but is that really cause for celebration?

 

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Did you know….

Pope Adrian VI died after a fly got stuck in his throat as he was drinking from a fountain?

That couldn’t have been pretty.

 

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Did you know…

Robert E. Lee wore a size 4 1/2 shoe?

That doesn’t speak well for the size of his….

Oh, never mind.

 

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Did you know…

Endurance training that involves alternating between high and low intensity is called fartlek? It comes from the Swedish word fart, meaning speed and lek, meaning play.

Oh, those silly Swedes.

 

 

 

Did you know….

The amount of potato chips Americans eat each year weighs 6 times more than the Titanic.

Damn. That’s a lot of spuds.

 

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The only truth in advertising you’re ever apt to see.

 

Who knew they could break your heart?

 

We had a really wet, cool fall last year with a really wet, cool spring this year…. and it was rough on the landscaping. The blueberry bushes look punky, the rhododendrons are spindly and we had 2 deaths.

While garden deaths usually don’t make me cry, these did.

For those of you who don’t know, my mother died July of 2014 from Non Hodgkins Lymphoma, and it was rough. I’m an only child and lost my dad when I was 15. I never knew my grandparents.

She was my family. Pretty much all of it.

Mom hated the fuss of funerals and wanted to be cremated. Said it was up to me to decide what to do with her ashes. Since she loved spending time at our home and enjoyed our gardens, I planted a tulip tree with part of her nourishing the soil.

 

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The tree had been growing well since then, but didn’t survive the winter and spring. We had to remove it…. and I cried.

Cried.

Silly, I know. And yes, I can always plant another one, but somehow it just feels…. wrong.

Then there was the beautiful red rose our neighbor gave me to mark her passing.

 

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It was stunning, and always filled with riotous blooms.

I would walk by, think of my mother and smile.

I mean damn…

 

 

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The crazy thing would even bloom in the snow.

I figured nothing would kill it… and then we had a really cool, wet fall and a really cool, wet spring.

 

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Yeah.

The beauty that I’d been enjoying for years…. gone. Just like my mom.

And I cried.. again. I couldn’t help it.

But I decided to replace the rose.

 

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With this flashy lady.

 

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The blooms looked almost painted….

 

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Which made sense when I removed the tag.

 

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I’ve always loved impressionist paintings, so that felt right.

 

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Fingers are crossed this one does well.

I think my mother would have approved.

 

When I die….

 

My epitaph shall read:

Here lies River

She was swallowed by a quince bush.

 

 

 

This is the bush from Hell that lives and multiplies like a rabbit on our property.

 

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Every fall we wack it down to a manageable level, and every spring it comes back with a vengeance.

 

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Yes, the blooms are lovely.

 

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And yes, the bumblebees enjoy it.

 

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Pardon the bee butt shots. Apparently they’re camera shy.

 

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But damn.

It’s only June and the pink spawn of Satan is already reaching the roof line.

 

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So if I should disappear this summer?

Grab a machete and come get me….

 

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It’s already got three window exits blocked.

 

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I fear the doors are next.

 

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Meet Great Grandpa….

 

 

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Okay, technically he’s my 8th great grandfather.

Though I can’t say I see the resemblance.

I’ve been shaking the family tree again and found Sir Adrian Scrope…. born in 1601, matriculated at Harts Hall, Oxford. A military man, he obtained the rank of colonel before it all went bad.

 

 

Very, very bad.

 

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Scrope was one of the regicides who surrendered at the Restoration of Charles II. The House of Commons voted to pardon him under the Act of Indemnity, but the House of Lords demanded that all the regicides should be brought to trial. Scrope was condemned to death when Major-General Richard Browne testified that Scrope had justified Charles I’s execution to him even after Charles II’s return. He was hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on 17 October 1660.

 

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An account of his behaviour in prison and at the gallows describes him as “a comely ancient gentleman”, and dwells on his cheerfulness and courage.

 

Cheerful at the gallows?

Well, good for him.

I can’t say his 8th great granddaughter would have been quite so chipper.