The Dueling Dutch Woman

The Adventures of a Middle Aged Dutch Woman

Archive for peacefulness

Poppies and such…

I’ve decided not to read in bed anymore. It was disturbing my night’s sleep and upsetting my schedule because I got too caught up in the book and didn’t go to sleep when I was supposed to. So now I only read during the day in my armchair whenever I have a spare moment and I do have enough of them. I don’t read non stop because I don’t completely want to lose myself in the book to the exclusion of everything else. It is so easy to lose track of everything and time and forget the world around me. So I do put a limit on how much time I spend reading at one stretch. Every once in a while I have to put down the book and do something completely different.

It’s not like it was in the olden days when I could let myself go and spend a whole afternoon doing nothing but read and completely shut out the world around me. I don’t feel comfortable doing that anymore. I would feel too disconnected. I do feel that I regularly have to stay in touch with reality and be reminded of it and even take part in it. I also have to do the ordinary things like the dishes and walk the dog and watch the news on TV. The last is especially important because it makes me feel connected to the here and now and that’s very important to me.

I suppose that’s why I like listening to the radio so much when I lie in bed at night. The programs deal with current events and I always feel up to date and I hear a lot of the news on the radio. I hear more of the details that I don’t hear on the news on TV.  There are a lot of background stories and interesting guests on the talk shows. The same goes for when I take my nap in the afternoon because I go to sleep listening to political discussions about some current issue. I’m better informed now that I listen to the radio than I was before and all sorts of points of view are represented, though they all are sensible ones and well thought out. There’s no idiotic shouting just to make noise and intimidate. Everything is very civilized.

The fields have been mowed and the wildflowers have been cut down. Except for in the flowerbeds, there are no poppies left. All the chamomile has been cut down too. Now I’ll have to wait a while and see what comes up next. It’s still raining regularly, so hopefully that will help with whatever is going to decide to grow. It’s a shame to see everything gone, but it can’t be helped. Beside the street, on the stretches of grass that have not been mowed, there is wild yarrow growing and I hope to see more of it. There’s always hope for new plants.

Today is going to be a peaceful day. The Exfactor will be here to do the groceries, thank goodness, because I’m almost out of milk. I don’t have any appointments. I didn’t think it was necessary to make one with my psychiatrist and my SPN is on holiday until the 27th.  I will see her next week but I don’t have any pressing problems. I don’t consider the issue of the ‘Black Dog’ serious enough. He is slowly slinking away. I do have to have some amount of self sufficiency and to be able to get myself through these spells. It’s good for my ego if I do. I do have to show some amount of inner strength.

It’s going to rain again today and it will be for the rest of the week. I don’t mind it too much as long as I get the chance to take out the dog regularly. It’s quite cozy inside when it’s raining. I still have the bedroom windows open and it’s not cold inside, though outside it isn’t all that warm. I just have to make sure that I wear enough clothes. My black leather jacket is coming in real handy, although it’s getting a little big on me.

I haven’t been on the bathroom scale, but I think I’m losing weight because my latest skirt is getting a bit big on me, even after I washed it. I’ll have to try and remember to get on the scale when I get up again this morning and I’m in my underwear. That’s always when I weigh the least and that’s the weight I go by. I do want to weigh myself at the most opportune moment.

I’m going back to bed. It will be nice and warm in there under the duvet.

Have a good morning when you get up.




Can’t get my act together…

I laid in bed for two hours and couldn’t fall asleep. I tried my best by listening to the radio and being relaxed, but sleep would not come. I finally said, “The heck with that,” and got up and made myself some coffee. Now I will sit here until I get good and tired, although I am somewhat in a slightly sleep induced state of mind now. It just wasn’t enough to make me fall asleep. I had too many thoughts going through my head and the radio only distracted me more.

It must have been the subject matters that were discussed because they were all about problem areas in the world and what should be done about them and I felt very frustrated in not being able to do anything at all except being very well informed and knowing what I’m talking about. It might have been better to put on a CD by Erica Satie and have listened to his very soothing piano music. He was considered eccentric in his day and age, but I think he is perfect for this century.

I watched and listened to a repeat of the Prinsengracht concert this afternoon of 2010 and it was very lovely. The 30th one will be held this year and it is always a big happening that everyone looks forward to. There’s always a big soloist and a good soprano who sings arias. It’s held on a podium in a canal in the middle of Amsterdam surrounded by people in boats and on the docks and bridges. It’s got a good atmosphere and is a fine evening. There’s a sing along at the end. Young and old go to watch it. It gets you in a fine mood.

We had a brief shower this past evening when I was lying in bed. It sounded very cozy and I hoped it would last a while, but it was over in a few minutes. That was a short lived joy. It barely got the ground wet and didn’t amount to much. That was the rain that was predicted. It should have been a few showers like there are supposed to be today but I won’t hold my breath for them. We here in the very southern part of the country don’t always get the rain that is predicted. A lot of it passes by to the north of us.

I’ve run out of milk and have had to drink orange juice. Since this does not agree with my stomach so well, I’ve had to take stomach tablets that reduce the acid. Luckily, they work. I won’t get new milk until this morning when the Exfactor will get the groceries. I hope he doesn’t get here too late. Doing without milk is difficult. It’s such a soothing beverage for me.

Yesterday was the last day off. Today is not a holiday anymore, but not a lot is going to be happening. It will be a rather peaceful day and only my psychiatrist is going to call me to inquire about my state of mind. I will be able to tell him that it is good after having reduced the medication.  It’s the anti-psychotics that I’ve reduced and I feel fine. I did that two weeks ago and have had no bad effects from it. i have to reduce them one more milligram.

I’ve got to think about the clothes I’m going to wear tomorrow. It’s going to be cloudy but not too cold. Still, I’ll want to wear a cardigan. I want to wear my red one for the cheerfulness of it. I have to think about the rest of the clothes I want to wear with it. Or maybe I’ll pick something completely different. It depends on what skirt I can find to fit me. I washed the one that’s my favorite and it’s not dry yet. The possibilities dazzle my mind.

I’ve got to go back to sleep now and make sure I get up on time in the morning. I can’t stay in bed endlessly, much as I’d like to. Sometimes I do have to act like a responsible person and get up before I’m ready to. It’s really not as painful as I make it sound. It just hurts a little bit.

Have a good morning when you get up.





When I have something to say…

It’s in the middle of the night and I’m sitting here with my cup of coffee and my cigarettes. I don’t actually know if I have something to say, but I’ll give it my best shot. I feel that I have to be somewhat productive in the nighttime, as I always claim that this is when my head is most clear. And it it is, but I just may be short of subjects to write about. Not that many things happen in my life so I always have to think very hard about what I will discuss. The tiniest details matter.

Yesterday went by in a flash just like Saturday did. The day was over before I knew it. Of course, I slept late in the morning and took about an hour to wake up properly in my armchair with several cups of coffee while I watched a literary program on TV. What used to be one of my favorite writers was on, but that was in a former life when my tastes were a little different. However, he discussed a book of travel stories he had written that sounded interesting and I do love travel stories if they are told well and no doubt he did. His name is Cees Nooteboom and he is translated in many languages. I can recommend him heartily. His novel ‘In the Dutch Mountains’ is very good.

My sister called and invited me over, so I had to get ready and walk the dog before I could leave. Luckily, the weather was nice enough, although it wasn’t especially hot. I did have to wear my cardigan, but I also had to wear sunglasses. I rode my bike over there in a stiff breeze, but in my sister’s garden things were pleasant and warm. I drank cappuccinos and had some Italian cookies and we ate a bowl of cherries. I admired the growing things and saw how much good the rain had done to the garden. Some plants had completely perked up and started to flower.

My sister very animatedly told me the complete plot of an Italian movie they had seen and she did such a good job that I feel that I’ve seen the movie, but also that I feel that I want to go see it myself. She’s made me very curious.  The name of the movie is ‘Mine Vaganti.’

When I got home, I watched the last two quarters of the field hockey game for the European championship and the Dutch club won. It wasn’t a very exciting game and they won with a penalty shot. After that, I took the dog for a walk because he had been waiting patiently. It looked like it was going to rain, but it didn’t. It is going to today, however. We’re going to have showers anyway, which is too bad for a holiday. There are several cultural festivals going on around the country and they sure can’t use the rain.

Today will be a nice and quiet day at home. I have nothing special planned and it is a relief to me. I look forward to the peacefulness.

I’m going back to bed.

Have a great day you all.



Some mind numbing information…

I woke up in a sweat, but I don’t think it’s because of menopause at all. I think it’s because of my anti-depressives and is a side effect from them. I used to get worse night sweats when I was on a higher dose of them and they have gotten a lot better since I cut it by half. I don’t have any other signs of menopause and I’m sure I’m well past it.

Since I had a complete hysterectomy and replacement hormone therapy, I never did go through it, except when I wasn’t on the proper dose of hormones and that was easily fixed. I do know what it is like to be emotionally irrational and to have hot flashes. I don’t have anything like that now.

I have become a completely a-sexual human being and don’t have any longing for it left in my body. It is the furthest thing from my mind and I could do without for the rest of my life. I have no desires left in that area. I don’t miss it one bit either. I wouldn’t mind a good hug and a cuddle, but I think that’s more a general human need. I don’t get turned on and I don’t mind that.

That’s more than you probably wanted to know about me, but we don’t generally discuss these things. I’m not worried about my non sexual state of being and I wouldn’t want other people to worry about theirs. There’s so much more to life than that. Everything does not revolve around sex.

That’s another reason I wouldn’t want another man in my life. I would hate to be bothered with a man with a sex drive while I have none. It would be a terrific problem as I would want a relationship that was strictly platonic. I don’t think there are many older men out there who are looking for that, especially since there is Viagra. I shudder at the thought.

In the meantime, I’m drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes and gently passing the night. Last night we had a huge thunderstorm and lots of rain. It was like a deluge. I went to sleep listening to the sound of it as it slowly passed overhead. It was a good way to go to sleep. I’m sure everything is very soaked now because we got enough rain. Everything was dripping wet when I let the dog out back just now. It was pleasantly cool outside too.

This came at the end of a warm and humid  day when I wasn’t sure of how to dress. I was fooled by the clouds that were in the sky and when I walked the dog, I was dressed too warm. Today it’s supposed to be a bit cooler and I will have to find the appropriate clothing. I ordered a summer cardigan on line and it will be here this afternoon. It’s still best to dress in layers so you can peel one off when it gets too warm.

I’m going to have a very uneventful day. See if I won’t like that. It’s going to be a very peaceful day filled with quiet moments. I will have lots of time to read my thriller. The most important part will be that my sanity will be intact. It has been for quite a while now and I appreciate it very much. Thank goodness for peaceful times.

I’m going back to bed now. I must finish sleeping. I wish it would rain some more to fall asleep to the sound of. Instead, I hear early birds singing.

Have a good  day.







I suppose that’s best to describe the benign feelings I have right now about the world  in general, though not about all things in specific, but I’ll not let myself be bothered about them right now. I want to have nothing but benign feelings, pushing away the effects of the less happy news items I watched on television last night. If they are all true, they make me feel very jaded indeed and I want none of that right now. 
I do want to enjoy my few hours of peace and quiet in the darkness and silence of the night and believe in the general goodness of mankind, though it is hard to pull the wool over my own eyes. It requires a state of oblivion that even I don’t know I’m capable of. I’m going to give it my best try, though. 
The face of one man is etched in my mind right now and that is the face of Dominic Strauss-Kahn and I wonder how he is doing in his single prison cell on Wicker Island. I want the allegations to not be true, but I’m afraid they are and I’m ever so sorry about that. It bothers me to no end that a man in his position would steep so low.  I suppose I feel an enormous amount of disappointment. This isn’t about having extra-marital affairs anymore. This is about rape and it’s very serious. 
Enough said about that. I have to find something equally true and honest in its place. Something to offset it. Something of beauty and elegance. That’s hard to come by in this world. I suppose I’m looking for a hero and I can’t find one at this moment. I need a Nelson Mandela.
I suppose that I don’t feel as benign as I thought I did, though I wish to. I worry about men in power abusing their privilege. It’s been shown that the brain activity of people in power changes and that they take bigger chances and do things ordinary people would not. They are risk takers. This goes for women in power as well as men. Women are more subtle, though. They don’t have a penis in their pants with which they have to assert themselves. 
I’ll gently return to the night and it’s peacefulness. If I sit here so silently, it’s hard to imagine that there’s a big complicated world out there. I can make my own world as small as I like. I can make it as small as the light of my desk lamp reaches. I can forget about yesterday and the day that is to come. All I have to do in a while is go back to bed and sleep. I don’t even have to dream about unpleasant things, at least, I hope not. 
On another subject, the book I’m reading, ‘Loot and other stories,’ is not fascinating me at all, but then again, not many books are lately and I never seem to be able to finish one. I will have to go in search of another book that will hopefully grab my attention well enough. I do still have enough to choose from on the bookcase. It’s a shame to leave all these books unread, but maybe some day in the future I will go back and finish them.
Today actually brings nothing complicated with it. It is a day of no consequence at all. I can make it as simple as I want and I am grateful for that. I will do some simple chores and generally take care of my mental health, which has for the most part been good. I’m not going from one extreme mood to the other, but am mostly positioned somewhere in the middle range. You have no idea what a relief that is. I’m not in the bouncy castle.
I hope you’re all having a good night and that you’ll have a good morning when you get up. We’re actually going to have good weather. 

>My pesky dog…


It’s in the very early hours of Saturday morning and my dog is being a pain in the neck. I don’t know what he wants and so far I’ve given him a milk bone and a rawhide chewy but still he’s not happy and keeps pestering me. He’s already been out back, but it is possible that he needs to go there again. It will be with great reluctance that I get up and try that again. I never know how quickly I can get him back inside. Maybe I best ignore him. 
That’s not at all how I wanted to start of this post. I wanted it to have a serene beginning and not a frustrated one. Now I feel that I have to start all over and get into the proper mood. It’s hard when a pup is begging by your side for I know not what. I’ll have to figure out a way to find my equilibrium and peacefulness in spite of him and hope he goes to lie down by my feet and falls asleep soon…he has just done that, so there is hope for me yet.

I do have to get up and get myself a cup of coffee because I’m thirsty and in need of some caffeine. I hope I don’t upset the careful balance we’ve achieved. I’ve already had to make cigarettes and frustrated the dog because I wouldn’t let him on the dining table. I didn’t want him looking out the window in the middle of the night where he would see imaginary danger and start to bark. That’s the last thing I wanted him to do. Yes, my dog comes with an instruction booklet too. It has to be applied on a daily basis. 
Since today is Saturday, it is my day off, but I do have to hang another load of laundry to dry outside. Yesterday’s load  was dry in no time at all and I’ve got very clean smelling sheets and pillowcases. Today I’ll be hanging up a load of clothes and it will be nice to have them smelling equally good. I have to take advantage of this weekend’s weather to do as much laundry as I can, because on Monday it may rain, so I thought I’d dive into my closet and pull out some clothes to wash. 
We’re having a bit of a heatwave this weekend and today the temperature is going to be 28C, which is unheard of for the time of year. I’m not complaining and in the apartment it is still relatively cool, especially the back of it where it will be nice to go lie down for a nap in the afternoon. I’m already looking forward to the day and can’t wait for the warm sunshine to walk the dog in. As long as it doesn’t get too hot, I’ll be alright, if dressed appropriately. I’m sure I’ll find something that’s just right. 
I’m expecting the Exfactor in the morning who’s going to bring me some cat food that I’m almost out of. I had forgotten to put it on the grocery list on Tuesday. The cat does eat a lot, although she doesn’t get any fatter. She’s a slim cat and dainty. She does beg by her bowl for food every day and will even eat dog food if I don’t fill her bowl on time. That is, if the dog lets her because he can be quite moody about that. Some days he cares more than others. 
It’s with some amount of relief that I’m going back to bed in a little while because I haven’t slept enough yet. I’m yawning and looking forward to going back to bed for a few more hours of sleep. 
I’ve got to make an appointment with my hairdresser soon. My hair is out of control and I can’t do a thing with it. It is too long. I’ll call today, but I’m sure I won’t be able to get in today. It will probably be sometime next week. You always quite suddenly have desperate hair from one day to the next. With me it happened yesterday. I washed it and it went flat and unmanageable. I look like a hillbilly. 
I’m off. I hope you’ll all have a good Saturday no matter what your weather is like, but I wish you lots of sunshine. 

>On a sleepless night…


That’s not quite right. I have slept already, but was awoken by my need to go to the toilet and you know that I can hardly ever go back to sleep once I’m up. I’m full of curiosity and life and ready to have a cup of coffee and a cigarette and to sit behind the computer and have my nightlife. These are the most exciting times of the day and night, when I feel mighty good and very full of myself. If I were in a position of power, I would send out all sorts of decrees and sign new laws into action. I would probably do my best and most innovative thinking. I would make short shrift of any nonsense. 
Not being in that position, I will just have to limit myself to my own little world and make the best of it there. At least I will do whatever I want with the best of cheer, because that’s the kind of mood I’m in. No doubt the pot of strong coffee is helping me get there and I’m drinking it eagerly before it becomes overheated and bad tasting. I’ve found a way to make the coffee just strong enough without making it too bitter and I’m taking full advantage of it. It perks me up tremendously and keeps my mood upbeat for a long time. It’s like drinking espressos without having to drink it from a tiny little cup and I take it with milk, lessening the strong impact of it somewhat. 
Taking the Temazepam during the day has helped me tremendously and I spend the day with a much greater sense of peace. I go to sleep easier too and sleep better and don’t have such complicated dreams. There’s a tremendous amount of relief in feeling the stress fall away from me and being able to relax and truly looking forward to going to bed with peace in my heart and not as an escape from the day. I think it’s been a brilliant move on my part, but I’ll have to find out how my psychiatrist thinks about it. No doubt he’ll be a party pooper about it. 
I’m wallowing in the good mood of the moment and can only think of ways to bring it to expression. It’s impossible without falling into repetition. I can only hope that this is a turn around moment and that my mood continues to be good from this point onward. It would be ever so nice if I woke up in the morning and immediately had the courage that I now have to try and find after several cups of coffee and much soul searching and many false starts. I hope I stop to see the world as a hostile place and find that I can move around easily in it again. 
Nothing can spoil my night, however, and it isn’t nearly done yet. I’m only at the beginning of it. There’s much nighttime living to be done yet. I do have to savor these quiet, peaceful hours that are so filled with good vibes.
I hope you’re all having a peaceful night too.