The Dueling Dutch Woman

The Adventures of a Middle Aged Dutch Woman

Archive for radio

Early bedtime?

Apparently I’m not supposed to go to bed on time at night. It is completely futile that I do because I do nothing but lay there and waste my time trying to fall asleep. It would be wonderful if I dozed off, but I don’t even do such a thing. I’m just wide awake and completely aware of my surroundings. I have silent communications with the dog and the cat who can’t go to sleep either as long as I don’t.  We all toss and turn and switch positions to get the most comfortable we can be, but it is all to no avail until I finally announce that I’m getting up and that sets the troops in action. We all move to the living room where everybody finds their spot.

One of the problems was, that for some reason there was no British thriller on tonight. There’s going to be tomorrow night and the night after that, but none this evening. This p*ssed me off a little bit because I had gotten so used to there always being one. There was other ‘amusement’ on the TV, but it was nothing that I was happy with. As a result, I went to bed early thinking that I would be happy listening to the radio, but it wasn’t so. The subjects that were discussed didn’t interest me all that much and I was just out of sorts. Sleep seemed like a good solution, but it didn’t come, despite my sleeping pills.

I cut my hair today because I decided that it was too long and didn’t make me look good. That’s because I was wearing my glasses and I thought I looked like a very average run of the mill woman without any pizazz. I wanted to do something about that quickly so I grabbed the scissors and started cutting. I did do it very carefully and it turned out alright. At least I have more bounce to my hair now and it is a little perkier. I will have to go to the hairdresser to have it properly evened out in the back, but I can take my time doing that. I’ll see if I can go next week some time.

I was supposed to have a domestic help today, but she never showed up. I will have to call on Monday to find out what happened to her. I still haven’t got my regular Friday domestic help back and I don’t know what’s wrong with her. I haven’t seen her in ages, but I sure do miss her. She does such a nice thorough job of cleaning the place. I hope she’s back on the job soon.

It rained off and on all day and one time the dog and I got rained on when we were out for a walk. It wasn’t too much rain and we didn’t get too wet. We weren’t too far away from home because I had anticipated that it was going to rain. Next week, for a few days, the temperatures are going to be almost tropical and then we’ll have rain again. This crazy Dutch weather!

I’m sitting here dressed very warmly in my gray cardigan. I have the windows closed and the heater turned on because both the dog and I were cold. I will reverse all of that before I go back to bed. I like sleeping better in a cool bedroom. I just didn’t like sitting up feeling cold. I was desirous of warmth and so was the dog because he was shivering. He would after he had all of his curls cut off. He’s almost naked now.

He was sitting in front of the window for a long time this afternoon and I thought maybe he was contemplating his navel because there was nothing to see outside. Maybe he has a rich, secret inner life that requires a lot of pondering, although he’s really not the type for it because he’s way too optimistic and good natured. Maybe he has secret, happy thoughts. I can imagine that.

Sometimes the cat sits beside him and helps him look out the window. They both must be having the same fantasies while they stare into the distance at nothing at all. Not that much happens out in the street. Maybe it’s a form of meditation and it calms them down. Maybe I have animals that are into Buddhism the same as I am.

I think I will go to bed now. I do feel sleepy and I think it’s time. I hope I don’t feel the need to get up again tonight. It would be awfully misguided.

Ciao,

Nora

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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.

Ciao,

Nora

An honest effort…

I woke up in a sweat with my hair all wet. I don’t know why, it’s not that warm in here and the bedroom window was open. They say it’s good to sleep with a cool head, that you sleep better then. That certainly didn’t apply to me tonight. I had a hot and sweaty head and woke up from it. I felt like laying a bag of frozen peas on it, but it’s cooling off as I sit here now with my cup of coffee and my hair is drying up. I think I will not wear socks when I go back to bed next. Maybe I should go to bed naked.

I took refuge in my bed early tonight because staying up was too much of an effort. The ‘black dog’ was breathing down my neck and making me think unpleasant thoughts that i was not in the mood for thinking. They were totally useless and unnecessary thoughts and served no purpose whatsoever. The only thing they did was get me down. I could think of only one escape and that was safely lying in bed listening to the radio. Luckily, that was almost enough of a diversion until I went to sleep.

Sleep is the only true diversion from my thoughts and when I wake up, I feel better for at least a while afterwards. Such are its restorative powers.

The Exfactor was here yesterday and he bought me a loaf of sliced white bread and a box of dark chocolate sprinkles. Now, when I have a craving, I have a slice of bread with that on it and I feel so good. It’s like manna from heaven. It satisfies my deepest longings. That’s the craving I always get when the ‘black dog’ is visiting. At least the gastric band limits how many of these slices of bread I can eat. I’m not a lost cause altogether.

There’s a part of me that wants to be upbeat and happy and that wants to fight against the downbeat and dark side of me. That must be because it’s the middle of the night and there’s room for both of them. It would be the only time that there were. I don’t feel this way during the day.

I just let the dog out back and stood outside by the back door. It was so nice and cool out there. It was very refreshing. I feel properly chilled now and am going to have to put on my bathrobe. There was moonshine with just a few clouds and no wind, just cold night air. It would have been nice to have gone for a walk in it, but I’m too chicken to do it.

In spite of everything, yesterday went by quickly. There was some respite in the form of television, but I was put off by what I saw on the news and the weekly chat with the prime minister who’s as slippery as an eel. My toes curl when I listen to him talk. He’s so very much not my favorite person. I wouldn’t shake his hand if I met him.

There’s a lot of nonsense on television in the summer season which has already started. It’s when you have to push the off button and refuse to watch it. It’s the negative aspect of summertime.

I’m going to have to go back to bed.  I’m not really ready to, but I don’t know what else to do. There’s no other sort of trouble I can get into. I’m going to have to be well behaved.

Ciao,

Nora

 

 

 

 

 

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.

Ciao,

Nora

 

 

In spite of myself…

I very cheerfully keep turning out one post after another despite the fact that I get very few comments. I’ve decided that this is not for the lack of readers, but that it just means that my readers don’t comment. They must be so awestruck by what I’ve written that they don’t know what to say. Isn’t that a satisfactory explanation? It means that I can keep writing and assume that enough of you are reading me to make it worthwhile.

If nothing else, I have something to do on those boring moments when I can reread my own old posts and see how I was doing. That’s always a pleasant occupation because I learn a lot from it and see behavior of myself that’s clearly not always rational and is usually linked to something else that is happening in my life, no matter how subtle it is. I see all the little potholes and bumps in the road and the mental hiccups I have as a result of them. It certainly is educational and always gives me courage to keep writing, even for the lack of comments.

I’m sitting here in the middle of the night, although you could say that it is almost early in the morning. I depends on how optimistic you are. I tend to be optimistic and see this as the beginning of the morning because the early birds will start singing in about another hour, before it even is dawn. Sunrise will be at 5:24 AM this morning, but those birds start singing much earlier. I’m glad that they do because it makes everything sound so much more cheerful.

My new summer cardigan arrived yesterday. I waited for it half of the afternoon and then had enough sense to look in the mailbox where it was. I could finally take the dog for his walk and he was eager to go. The cardigan is lovely and the weather was just right for it. I have enough clothes that will match it and I’m going to wear it often. I do love cardigans as they can complete an outfit perfectly and they are good if the weather is just a bit chilly, but too warm for a jacket.  I got it on sale and saved 25 Euros. That was a good deal, I thought.

I watched ‘Midsomer Murders’ last night and went to bed late. It was a satisfactory episode, as usual. There’s always enough of a twist at the end to  have a surprising outcome. I went to sleep at midnight listening to a discussion on the radio about country music and why it had never caught on in this country. Apparently, a lot of people are not appreciative enough of the real stuff and think of country music as something to line dance to. These are the same sort of people that listen to singers of ‘life songs’ that we call ‘sad rags.’

I’ve switched from coffee to milk and I’m getting tired now. I will have to go back to bed because I’m starting to yawn. It will be lovely to go to sleep again.

I hope you’ll all have a good day.

Ciao,

Nora

 

 

>How long will it last?

>

I’m somewhat sleepy headed as I sit here with my first cup of coffee in the middle of the night and I’ve been yawning nonstop. No doubt another cup of coffee will fix me right up and I will be perky in no time at all. I wish to be perky and not sit here so muddleheaded and in danger of dislocating my jaw every time I yawn. Besides, I do want to be able to make some sense as I write this and not look like a completely misguided woman. I always want to come across as totally sane and sensible. 
Oh yes, I forgot that I had stated that I wanted to be completely honest at all times and that I would show my less positive aspects also. So I don’t have to be perfect. I can be muddleheaded and misguided. I’ll be it for just a while then until the coffee starts to work. When the caffeine kicks in, I’ll be right on track again. 
I’m sitting here with my short hair totally sticking out all over the place. It looks like I’ve been in a bad storm and it has gotten stuck that way. No amount of brushing will get it in place again. I will have to wash it with a good shampoo to get it to look decent again. I don’t know what I do in bed to get it to look that way, but apparently I rub it the wrong way. It’s not even static electricity that makes it look like this. I do this all by myself. 
Those are the lesser side effects of having short hair. You very quickly look like a porcupine.

I’m having my second cup of coffee and the yawning is lessening. I do think I’m becoming more clearheaded. Any minute now I’m going to break out in a song and dance routine. 
Well no, I don’t think it will be as bad as that. I’m not known for quite that much exuberance. It would cost me an awful lot of effort. It would probably knock the wind right out of me. I don’t think I will ever do a tap dance and I can only sing in the shower. 
I almost forgot to be happy that today is Saturday. Isn’t that wonderful? I have most of my chores done and the day to myself. It really and truly will be a weekend day to enjoy as I please and as far as I know, the weather is going to be decent also. We’re supposed to have sunshine all day. 
In a way, that’s not so good because we ought to have some rain to replenish the rivers and canals and groundwater supply. We do officially have a drought now, so we don’t hope for a long hot summer. On the contrary, we wish for rain. The dikes along the rivers and the canals are drying out and that may cause a break and a flood and some of them are now artificially kept wet. The Netherlands are not a wet country anymore.
It’s with some amount of anticipation that I look forward to going back to bed. It will be nice to lie in the semi dark and listen to the radio before I drift off to sleep again. 
It will be equally nice to choose which clothes I’m going to wear today. I’m still looking for that unfindable cardigan. I have yet to figure out what I’ve done with it. 
I hope you’ll all have a nice day. I’m planning on having a very nice one. God forbid anything should stop me from having it. 
Ciao,
Nora

>When you don’t know any better…

>

Yesterday evening I watched inane television. Since it was Saturday evening, it was the only kind of television to watch. It is not thought that intelligent people watch television on a Saturday evening. It is expected that they are all otherwise engaged. Apparently only dull and desperate people watch television on Saturday evenings.
It was one way to pass the evening and I pretended to care very much and be interested. I watched it while I slowly ate my dinner in stages. That takes me a while and is a good distraction. I also played with the dog and petted the cat who decided to come lie on my lap. I do have other things to keep me occupied while I try not to get too disgusted by what is offered for my entertainment. 
The other option is turning the television off, but that is too silent and then I wouldn’t have anything to be exasperated with. Luckily, there are only commercials in between the programs, otherwise they would drive me crazy too. There are very few amusing ones and some of them make me want to throw a brick through the screen. Fortunately, I don’t have a brick handy. 
Some of them are an insult to my intelligence. But you can walk away from them until the next program starts and go to the toilet or be otherwise engaged. At one point, I just turned the darn thing off and went to bed and listened to the radio instead, which was broadcasting a football game between Milan and Rome. Some days you can’t win. Luckily, I was tired enough to fall sleep quickly, so I was spared most of that.
The only reason I was tired enough was because I had taken my ‘fall asleep medicines’ and once those stopped working, I was awake again. As I became conscious, I was writing a blog post in my mind, the gist of which I don’t remember now. That’s how much it occupies my mind in the middle of the night. I compose blog posts as I wake up. Beethoven must have composed music in his sleep. I assume he had pen and paper handy. 
I forgot to call the hairdresser yesterday to make an appointment while it was really necessary that I do. Now I’ll have to wait until Tuesday because they are closed on Monday. I have a terrible head of hair that needs a lot of hairspray to keep it in place. The dog leaves the bathroom when I apply it and waits in the hallway. He doesn’t do that when I apply my deodorant. Of course, I don’t use copious amounts then. 
The cat escaped into the stairwell yesterday and stayed away for half an hour. Finally she showed up at the front door again where she waited patiently until I opened it. She does once in a while look for an opportunity to make her escape. I don’t know what she does in the stairwell but she always goes way to the top. I refuse to chase her and always rightly guess that she’ll show up again. Every once in a while she escapes though the outside door, but she just walks around the block end enters the apartment through the cat flap in the back door as if it is no problem. Luckily, she is a bright cat. 
The dog doesn’t know what to do with himself when the cat has escaped. He thinks it’s weird and misses her because he knows she’s gone through the front door. He keeps going there to see if she’s not back yet. Then when I let her in, he pretends that he won’t let her and tries to push her out again as if he’s not happy with her company. God forbid she should not show up one day. He’d miss her badly.
It’s with some amount of reluctance that I bring this to an end. I don’t want to make this too long and I have to think about going to bed. I am yawning, so maybe I’ll be asleep again in no time. There’s always the radio to listen to. I’m sure there will be no football games on now. 
We’re still expecting some rain today and it will be most welcome, I just hope there will be enough to really make a difference. A really good shower should do. 
Have a good morning. 
Ciao,
Nora