The Dueling Dutch Woman

The Adventures of a Middle Aged Dutch Woman

Archive for November, 2010

>On a cold Tuesday morning…

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According to my weather bar, it is supposed to be snowing right now, but it looks like we haven’t had any snow since last night. I think it must get it’s information from the airport which is several kilometers away from town, because it very often shows different weather than what we have here. It lies on a higher plateau, so that may make the difference. 

The world is white and lighter and brighter, and so far the snow is pretty. We don’t have any treacherous ice yet. I’ll have to go out in it in a while to walk Tyke and test the conditions. I’ll wear my sturdy cowboy boots, those are the best ones I’ve got at the moment. I wore my ankle boots yesterday, but snow got in them and my socks got wet. The snow falls on Tyke’s outer fur and he easily shakes it off and doesn’t really get wet. He’s well insulated. 
I’ve slept well. I went to bed at 11 o’clock and woke up at 6:30 this morning. That’s not a heck of a long sleep, but it’s enough for me. I feel I’ve done well if I’ve slept that many hours. It did take one cup of coffee to wake me up properly and another one to get me started well. I think I could have stayed in bed a while longer, but I was too eager to get up.

As it is I’m dawdling now and the morning is moving along steadily. The parents have already come by and taken their children to school. The kids were making snowballs as they went along. Tyke’s looked at them full of curiosity and he’s now sitting in front of the window looking at the white world. No doubt he wants to go out in it. It has started snowing lightly.

I wonder if the Exfactor will be able to get through it on his motorcycle. I assume the major thoroughfares are clear. I don’t want him to break his neck just to get here, but he always managed it last winter. I think he sees it as a challenge. I do need groceries and my bike does need to get fixed. Unfortunately, he was not able to get that done when he was here yesterday. All for the lack of the proper tools.

I do an awful lot of daydreaming when I write a post. I spend more time daydreaming than I do writing. Whatever subject I write about,  causes a long string of thoughts to unravel in my mind and before you know it, I’m someplace far, far away. It’s amazing the amount of stuff I deal with when I do that. It must have some purpose. I assume these things need to be thought about and that they are subjects that I normally would not get around to putting much thought to.

I look outside and see that, for the sake of fashion, some people are hopelessly under dressed for this weather. They wear everything just a bit too tight and too short and too open. You know they must be cold.

I’m going to get dressed myself and walk the dog. We’ll get dusted by the snow and it will be nice.

Have a nice day!

Ciao,
Nora

>Getting started…

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Because it’s Sunday, I had a convoluted day. I spent a lot of the night awake and slept all of the morning. I didn’t get up until 1 pm and took my time getting my act together. I was very much discombobulated and needed two tranquilizers to settle down. Then I took the dog for a walk in the icy cold. Although the sun was shining, there was frost on everything, but the cold air felt good on my face and I was dressed warm enough. 
The dog doesn’t seem to be bothered by the cold at all, but then he does have on his own winter coat. That’s why I don’t want to get him trimmed right now, but I am going to have to consider it next month when it is going to get too long and some of it is going to have to get cut off. Maybe he can get partially trimmed and not as severely as he was  the last time. I think he’s going to be too cold if it is. 
I need to get back to a normal schedule tonight, because tomorrow regular life starts again. It’s okay to be careless for a little while, but I can’t keep doing it. I do have to have structure and having a normal night’s sleep is one of the things that comes with it. I don’t actually enjoy being off my normal schedule like I used to. I do appreciate sleeping through the night. I have a better day if I do. Getting up in the middle of the night is not the thrill it used to be, but then again, I may have made that claim before. 
The sun is going down and it is getting cold in here. I’ve just turned up the thermostat. I’m shivering in my thinner cardigan. I decided to wear it, because the other one was to warm, I thought. I think I’ll make myself a cup of hot chocolate to heat up my insides. It would be nice if I had marshmallows to put in it, but that’s wishful thinking.  I’d probably finish the bag of marshmallows before I’d finish the package of chocolate mix. It would still be nice, though. 
I’m just now beginning to feel normal. All this time I’ve felt that I’ve been in a bad dream that I could not wake up from. I must have finally got back to my senses. It sure took long enough. I feel like I’ve walked out of a confusing place into a place where everything makes sense. I can think straight again. It happened as quickly as opening a door and walking through it, but it really makes me think of the saying that when God closes a door somewhere, he opens a window some place else. That’s what it feels like. 
I’ve made my cup of hot chocolate and very delicious it is too. Very filling also. I can’t drink it too quickly, otherwise I’ll start burping, but since I’m here on my own, it doesn’t matter too much. The animals don’t mind. 
Have a great evening.
Ciao,
Nora

>Around the bend…

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The day has gone by quickly and already it is the end of the afternoon.The day has been overcast almost all day and it didn’t get warmer than 34F degrees. Still, I did not experience that as cold and I think I’m just getting used to it, although it may be the absence of any wind that may have something to do with it too. The sun is about to set and I will have to turn the lights on in the living room.
The domestic help has been here and left me with a clean apartment. She folded the dry laundry and did the dishes, unasked for. She’s a bundle of efficiency. She cuddles Tyke and plays with him and Tyke is crazy about her. He eagerly waits behind the front door when she’s rung the intercom and nearly jumps in her arms. Then he runs and gets one of his favorite toys and shows it to her proudly.
The first thing Tyke does, after she’s vacuumed and mopped the living room floor, is get all his toys that have been gathered in one spot and distribute them all over the clean floor. It’s hilarious and we always end up laughing about it. He doesn’t like all his toys neatly in one place. We’re supposed to trip over them and pretend it’s an obstacle course. 
The dog gets spoiled by every woman who enters this apartment and he loves all of them.  He likes their good smells and their happy, light voices and their soft hands. He thinks they all come here especially for him and can’t wait to bond with them. What he wants more then anything is a belly rub, but any kind of attention will do. Just being talked to makes him happy, but he loves a good perfume.  He’s crazy about any woman who smells good.  One of my personal helpers always wears very good perfumes and Tyke very much would like to lie in her lap and never move from there.
Gandhi is just happy if she didn’t get locked up in the same room with the vacuum cleaner, because she is scared of it. She does return as soon as it’s turned off, because she is a member of the tribe and doesn’t want to feel left out. She is very much a people cat and likes to be in the presence of company. As long as the vacuum cleaner stands silent and doesn’t move around, she can stand walking past it. She does want to sit on everyone’s lap, but people are funny about cats and are less tolerant of cat hair and the sharp nails that they imagine every cat has. People either love cats or dislike them a lot. It’s not like with dogs. I’ve not had a lot of cat lovers here yet. Poor Gandhi. 
Tyke is telling me that it’s time to go for a walk. Unfortunately, we have to wait for the delivery boy from the pharmacy to get here first. I hope he can be patient enough until that time. I’m going to have to distract him. 
I hope you all have a good evening. 
Ciao,
Nora

>Drinking coffee early in the morning…

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I got up early, though I had not gone to sleep until 10 pm, and doubtlessly that means I will have to take a nap later today. I may try to stay up and save any tiredness that I feel for the nighttime and try and sleep really well then. I’ll have to wait and see how well I do today. 
Someone mentioned, on an other blog, that your need for sleep changes as you get older and that you need less of it at night. It would be nice if I could blame my short nights on that. I remember my parents always needing a nap in the afternoon as they got older. Maybe that applies to me. Maybe I am an older person now, though I would hate to think of myself that way. 
Maybe it is all a very personal matter and it depends on your individual internal clock and how it is set. Mine seems to be set for shorter nights, with an occasional exception, and naps in the afternoon. I’m sure there is no good or bad or right or wrong, but just a system that works well for each person. You have to accept what works for you and live with that, as long as you get enough sleep in the end and you don’t do all of it during the day, like I was doing for a while because of the tranquilizers. 
I had a very satisfying session with my SPN yesterday morning in which I closed the chapter of my first marriage, because I think I’m done with it.  I’ve gained a lot of understanding about it and about my own role in it.  I can look back and see how events unfolded and why things happened the way they did and why it ended the way it did. I’ve been relieved of a huge burden that I carried with me for a lot of years and that really weighed me down. 
I’ll be moving on to the next chapter and that is my marriage to the Exfactor, which needs to be discussed, though it is not nearly as pressing as my first marriage was. Having said that, I wonder what’s going to come to the surface in those talks, because a lot of things happened in our marriage that are not so admirable from the side of either party. There’s not going to be a blaming game going on. Just an attempt at understanding. 
I’ve had my coffee in the meantime and I have switched to cold milk. It’s making me burp something awful and I’m a regular orchestra all by myself. Tyke and Gandhi are the only audience members, so I don’t have to be embarrassed. 
My head’s still on awfully straight. I haven’t stopped being sensible yet. I don’t know what’s come over me. I don’t know how long this is going to last, but I better take advantage of it and do sensible things.  One sensible thing I’m going to do now is get dressed and walk the dog. At least I will get that out of the way.
Have a nice day!
Ciao,
Nora

>Time to write!

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 It’s early in the morning and I’m completely awake and ready to go and tackle anything that’s worth tackling. I’ve had my second cup of coffee and barely had any cobwebs in my mind when I woke up. I’m just about to pour my third cup and have a good sit down here. My sore upper back is still sore, but it isn’t nearly as bad as it was yesterday. At least the sharp pain is gone and it is now a dull ache. I think one more painkiller ought to do the trick.
I’ve visited Facebook and did the necessary socializing there. I don’t do a lot of it, but mainly keep in touch with family and relatives and the friends that are ‘real’ friends. People who care and keep in touch one way or the other. I do appreciate that, those little tokens of affection. A person needs all the strokes they can get. I think that’s what this socializing is all about. Mutual strokes. I must get better at it myself. I do think it teaches you to be less self centered. 
I’ve got to go see my SPN today and I’m more than ready to. I want to continue the work that I was doing on my first marriage, but I think I made a lot of headway already. I think I can come to a rounding off now, unless I’m very mistaken and there’s a lot more beneath the surface. We will see. Whatever I have done so far has helped me tremendously and I can tell that by the nature of my dreams. They are far less sad and frustrating and are taking a far different turn. I’m even starting to dream about the Exfactor now. Maybe that marriage will be next on the program, although I feel less traumatized by it. I think that maybe the Exfactor got traumatized in it more than I did. I must find out about that. 
Since today is Wednesday, my appointment with my SPN is the only one in my agenda. I will not be seeing anyone else. I will have to do some laundry and straighten out my desk. I need to go through the paperwork that’s stacked on it and see what can go. There are many odds and ends lying there that need to be organized and looked at and put a way or tossed out. I also have to try and get the speakers to work on my computer, but how I’m going to do that is not clear to me yet. I will have to fiddle around with them. That’s all I can do. I’m not a technical wonder. I never was taught anything about electronics and computers. Maybe common sense will apply. I do have that for practical things. 
My head is on awfully straight this morning, but I lack an enormous amount of  imagination. I seem to be all business. I can’t stand it when I’m like that. When I’m only efficient and not imaginative at the same time. I suppose I’m going to tackle everything head on today, without any complicated emotions. Well, I will have my moments of clarity, I suppose, when I’m no nonsense and get straight down to business. Maybe I better take advantage of it. I may get things done that have been lying by the wayside. I guess everybody has days like that in their life when they have good sobering thoughts and get their act together. 

I thought I had temporarily misplaced my dog, but he blended in so well with the interior of the living room that I overlooked him and I just discovered him. He was so quietly asleep and not even snoring. He’s always so close to me that I worry if I don’t see him. He’s not like Jesker who would go off on his own and go to sleep in another room. 

I had trouble seeing through my glasses, until I took them off and saw that they were very dirty, so I took a bottle of window cleaner and got them completely clean and suddenly I could see again. What a difference that made. Everything got sharper contours. Leave it to me to be so absentminded as to not have noticed that earlier. I even do amaze myself at times. My right eye is fuzzy, though, and it needs correcting. 

Right, it’s time to take my medicines and get dressed. I need to take Tyke for a walk. The early morning calls me. It’s cold out there.

Ciao,
Nora

>Company…

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The day is unfolding little by little. Between each scene I take a time out. I do that with a cup of coffee and a cigarette and some time spent pondering about what’s happened and what’s coming up next. Mostly I feel very pleased, because the day is unfolding pleasantly, although I am only halfway there yet. I know the rest of it will be fine too. I feel it in my wind swept bones.

Before my personal helper got here this morning, I did the chores and I did them with good humor and not at all frustrated because I had to do them, like I sometimes do. I owe this to the fact that I have stopped taking a tranquilizer in the morning that always made me feel so tired and like going back to bed. Now I have energy and I’m not dragging myself from room to room trying to get things done hopelessly. It really does make a difference. 
I put clean sheets on the bed and put the dirty sheets in the washing machine immediately. They will have to stay in there for a while, though, because I have a load of laundry drying on the rack in the bathroom. I can only handle one load at the time, or I would have to get another rack that I could hang over one of the doors and dry more laundry on it. It would work, but it isn’t all that necessary that all the laundry gets dried at once. I’m not running an orphanage, after all.  It is just a one person household.

I got the whole apartment straightened out and ready for the domestic help, so she would be able to clean it without there being any stuff lying around  that was useless and in the way.  Cleaning up Tyke’s toys is the biggest challenge, because as soon as I do, he drags them all out again and distributes them across the living room floor. He’s just like a little kid that way. And to think that I ordered more toys for him.

I made a fresh pot of coffee when my personal helper got here and took a shower and put on a new set of double layered clothes. She had warned me that it was cold outside, but I had already noticed that when I stood by the back door to let Tyke out.

I had to wait for my psychiatrist to call me before we were able to go for a walk and he called promptly at noon. He asked me how the decreasing of the tranquilizers was going and I told him that I had it down to one pill during the day, but that it had not been as easy as I had thought it was going to be. I had missed them. We made an appointment for next week at which time we’re going to discuss decreasing my dose of anti-psychotics, which is going to be scary and I’m honestly going to tell him that. I’m a hero on socks, as we say here. The implication should be clear.

We took Tyke for a walk in the cold wind, therefor our walk was not very long, but long enough for Tyke to take care of all of his needs. It’s not only time for thick winter coats, but for gloves and hats as well. I worry about my hair and the scrunched up state it gets in from wearing a hat. Vanity does prevent me from doing it yet. I’ll have to suffer from a cold head. It’s tough trying to be a fashionable woman at my age. I don’t look good in hat hair.

The domestic help has been here in the meantime and we had ourselves a good old chat while she did her work. We also drank coffee and smoked cigarettes even though she’s not supposed to, but I’m not going to tell. She’s got two little boys and she tells me stories about them that bring tears to my eyes from pure emotion, either from laughter or compassion or a mixture of both. I’m easily moved. Of course, I’m in a much better state of mind to be moved too, now that my emotions are not dulled by the tranquilizers.

I’ve got a lovely clean apartment and I’m going to keep it that way. I do feel incredibly spoiled. The quality of my life has improved so much since these people have come into it.  I never want to go back to how it used to be. I pray to Allah/God/Buddha/Wotan that I will always be this lucky. Everybody deserves a break and I was certainly ready for mine.

I’ve got to walk Tyke if he’s ready to go. I think he’s sound asleep, but we’ll see. One movement from me can mean the end of that. He does have his alert ears on, even when he’s taking a nap.

Have a good evening, everyone.

Ciao,
Nora

>We all fall down…

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It’s early on a Sunday morning and I’m having my second cup of very delicious coffee. For some reason it turned out really well today, so I must have had the magic touch when I put the ground coffee into the filter. Maybe slightly carelessly scooping is the best way to do it, instead of carefully measuring each spoonful. I was in a hurry when I made the coffee, because I was impatient for a cup and I couldn’t make it quick enough. 
Luckily, the coffeemaker gets done quickly and I had my nice hot cup of coffee in no time at all. It just seems to take a while when you’re waiting, but that’s when you have to find a way to amuse yourself instead. I did that by answering emails. That’s usually the first thing I do in the morning, though I’m barely capable of it at first because of the cobwebs. I do manage to fake it until I make it, I think, because I go about it very slowly, unless the answers are very simple. 
I went to bed very early last night. I realized that I was grumpy because I was tired and in need of sleep. I had no patience left for anything or anybody. I made myself a glass of black berry milk and took that to bed with me and listened to the radio. I made sure that Tyke and I had some quality bonding time, which he was in need of, and in the shortest amount of time I was asleep. Gandhi was sleeping beside my pillows.
I suppose that yesterday was a perfectly uneventful day. I paid bills and got my paperwork in order and found out how poor I was. That’s always good to know for the rest of the pay period. Then you know how much you have left to spend on groceries. God forbid that you should eat too much. 
I had planned to take a nap in the afternoon, but I never did get around to that. I suppose I wasn’t sleepy enough and wanted to save whatever there was for the nighttime. I walked Tyke when he needed to get walked and sat behind the computer. I did some chores, but there weren’t that many to do that were urgent and I will finish today what I didn’t do yesterday. I have to put clean sheets on my bed and I do want to do that today to make going to bed tonight as pleasant as possible. 
Since today is Sunday, it’s going to be another quiet day. There will be speed skating and other sports on television and I will watch them most likely. I also have to make sure I watch the news this morning. There were manifestations all over the country yesterday against the cultural budget cuts that the new government is planning against the will of many. I think the attempts to call a halt to it, though, are useless, because this government is ruthless.
It’s going to be a cold day today. I just let Tyke out back and there was a cold wind blowing from the east. I was shivering in my bathrobe. Even Tyke thought it was cold and came back in in a hurry. It’s only going to be 44F, but because of the wind, it’s going to feel colder. It will be no fun to take Tyke out for walks today. I’m not looking forward to that. I do so dislike being in the cold wind. I will have to wear my North Pole coat. My leather jacket is not going to be warm enough. 
I’ve had enough coffee for this morning and have switched to milk with blackberry syrup. It’s very delicious and filling too. It takes care of my sweet tooth at the same time. It does give me that little sugar high and it makes the milk more interesting to drink. It makes it last twice as long, because I don’t gobble it down all at once. I take delicate sips, if you can imagine that. It’s an excellent discovery and for that kind of milk you pay a relative fortune in the supermarket. 
I’ve got to take my medicines. It’s that time of the morning again. I’ve had to play ball with Tyke while I wrote this. That involves a lot of wrestling to get it away from him. 
Have a good Sunday!
Ciao,
Nora