The Dueling Dutch Woman

The Adventures of a Middle Aged Dutch Woman

Archive for television

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

 

 

 

 

 

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.

Ciao,

Nora

Just give me more coffee…

I’m not really awake yet. As far as I’m concerned it’s all an illusion that I’m sitting here behind the computer. Or a dream I’m having, but it does seem awfully real. I’ve made a pot of coffee in order to wake up and I hope it’s going to happen any minute now. I’ve nearly finished my first cup and reality should dawn on me soon.

I feel I’ve only briefly been asleep and that’s probably true because I didn’t go to bed until after midnight. I watched comedy on television and it was good. I actually laughed and was very amused. That doesn’t happen very often and I was left with a good feeling. Thinking back on it, I can instantly recall that good feeling and smile again.

I’m drinking my second cup of coffee and I think I’m awake now. I’ve ceased yawning and I can think clearly. Things no longer seem like an illusion. That’s a relief. It’s good to be back amongst the living. It felt a little strange to be so disconnected. It is much better to be in touch again. Now the night feels just like any other ordinary night.

There was going to be a good British thriller on after midnight, but I decided I shouldn’t stay up that late. It was an episode of the series ‘Taggart.’ I’ve never watched it, but it seemed interesting and gruesome enough. It must always be on late at night for me to have never seen it. They must save the real scary stuff for then.

All that’s on for thrillers on Wednesday nights right now is ‘Midsommer Murders.’  That’s amusing enough and I always watch it, but I miss ‘Inspector Linley.’ I’m waiting with bated breath for the new episodes and for other British thrillers such as ‘Silent Witness.’ I can’t wait to see what the new season will bring.

I shouldn’t wish for that too much, though, because it won’t start until the fall and we first have summer to get through and enjoy. I mustn’t dismiss summer because it will be over fast enough and I will be sorry when it is. I want to enjoy every day of it. It already started yesterday when we had temperatures of 29C. Luckily, inside the apartment it stayed nice and cool, so I didn’t suffer too much. It was only bad when I had to walk the dog in the hot sun and out of the breeze.

I wore a summer dress that I’d only worn one time before and it fit a lot better because I’d lost weight. It looked a lot nicer too. I felt more comfortable in it and not so shy about going out in it. It was very cool to wear and exposed a lot of skin. I will get a tan in it. But today we are supposed to get a few thunder showers and on Monday it’s supposed to rain.

It won’t be so hot then and that’s okay with me. I like the milder temperatures. I doesn’t have to be so hot for me. The problem is that it also gets humid and that’s no pleasure. I’m used to the dry heat of California. That’s much more bearable.

Today I’m going to watch the men’s final at Roland Garros. I think it is on in the afternoon. I watched the women’s final yesterday. I was rooting for both people. I didn’t have a favorite. It should be an exciting game today. I will root for Nadal.

I’m going back to bed. I’ve got a lot of sleeping left to do. The early birds are singing and I will go to sleep listening to them.

I hope you will all have a nice day.

Ciao,

Nora

 

Stalking the night…

The first thing I did when I got up tonight, was make myself a wonderful pot of freshly brewed coffee instead of drinking that old heated up in the microwave stuff. That was just about the kindest thing I could have done for myself. I’m enjoying a cup of it now and very nice it tastes too. I thought, why short change myself with bad tasting coffee when with a little more effort I can have the real thing? Sometimes I forget to treat myself with the kindness I deserve. That everybody deserves, so I hope you all treat yourselves well at every opportunity.

When I went on the bathroom scale yesterday morning, I discovered that I had lost another kilo. This leaves me 3.5 kilos short of my latest goal. I’ve already reached two goals and this is my third one. I may set a new goal after I reach this one, it depends on how easily I lose the weight. No doubt I will lose more weight quickly when I cut down on my medicines soon. This particular one is well known for weight gain, so I’m expecting to lose weight as I decrease it. That’s not the reason why I’m cutting down, but it’s a nice benefit of it.

I’m becoming my old skinny self again, someone I haven’t been in a number of years. It’s a great relief to be getting my old body back. Well, of course, it’s been ravaged by time and middle age. It’s not quite the body I used to have. I will need to have some surgery done on my stomach to get rid of excess skin. That’s where most of the weight gain was. I had an apple shape. All of me is skinny now except not quite there in that area.

I had a nice day yesterday, although I didn’t do anything special. I walked the dog a number of times and watched sports on television. I’m becoming a real sports addict and watch a number of them. I even watch field hockey, which I used to think was boring. I do enjoy the tennis at Roland Garros and can watch it for hours if they are good matches. I like to watch Federer play. He’s poetry in motion.

I didn’t get around to reading my book as the animals decided to take up a lot of my time every moment that I sat down in my armchair. There was always one climbing on my lap wanting to be petted. I suppose yesterday was animal bonding day. That’s what Sundays must be for. Every time I gave them a kind look, it was reason for them to come get attention from me.

We all did take a nap in the afternoon and I woke up very groggy and had to be resuscitated with coffee and cigarettes and then a refreshing walk with Tyke, followed by dinner and lots of cold milk for my never ending thirst. I had my pajamas and bathrobe on before I remembered to take out the trash. I watched a quiz show on television and got a lot of the answers right and felt superior. It’s probably different when you actually stand there in front of the cameras and have to give the answers.

I’m not especially looking forward to today. The personal helper and the domestic help will be here. I’m not too thrilled about it. It will be nice to have a clean apartment, but I’m not looking forward to the company. The personal helper wants to micro manage me to pieces and I have to put a halt to it. I will do that today. The domestic help wants to sit and visit too much and I will have to put an end to that also. I do want to be in charge of my own life and my own day and time.

Tomorrow will be a much better day. My time will be my own and I have no appointments, except that the Exfactor is going to be here to do the groceries. You have no idea how much I appreciate my freedom. I need lots of breathing space and room to move around in. Other people can make me feel trapped, especially if I feel they need to be entertained and amused and kept busy.

I’ve got to go back to bed now and get a couple of hours more sleep before the personal helper gets here. I do want to be coherent before she shows up, so I have to set my alarm clock.

I hope you’ll all have a nice day.

Ciao,

Nora

Just take some pills…

I just woke up from an afternoon nap and for a change I’m not feeling all that great. I’m grouchy and grumpy and basically in a bad mood. To take care of this, I’ve made myself a fresh pot of coffee and I’m now drinking my second cup. I hope that it will improve my outlook.  I don’t like myself this way, but as I drink the coffee, I see little glimmers of light and I think there will be improvement soon.

I’ve also taken my evening dose of medicines. When all else fails, there are always the medicines to take. A couple of pills will always bring relief. I can count on that. Such is my faith in them.

Of course, it helps if you sit down and write about what is happening to you. If you put it in words, you are bound to feel better. I am a great believer in that. The moment I put down that I’m in a bad mood, I am less so. The sheer act of making it public makes me feel better. At least it’s not a dark secret I’m carrying around with me. I publicly announce that I’m a grouch and a grump.

I do dislike pretending I’m cheerful when I’m not. I think people ought to be allowed to be grumpy when they feel like it. As long as they don’t make any casualties it should be okay. You have to get over your grumpiness in your own time and at your own rate. As long as you make an effort and don’t get stuck in it. It is always my intention to get over it as quickly as I can.

There, I’m over it now and can be normal again, whatever is meant by that. I can think straight anyway. And as I write that, the sun is coming out again. That is a welcome sight, as it has been playing peekaboo behind the clouds all day. And we still haven’t got any rain. It’s useless trying to wish for any, we’re just not going to get it.

Maybe that is just as well because I still have to take the dog out for a walk and I certainly don’t want to get rained on. The dog is lying by my feet waiting very patiently for me to take him. I should say that he is impatient. Every once in a while he jumps up against me and looks at me with begging eyes. I’m so cruel to make him wait.

I better go get my shoes and jacket on and take him out. I’ve missed the 6 o’clock news as it is. It will be nice to get some fresh air and  exercise. After that I can get my pajamas and bathrobe on and vegetate in front of the television.

I hope you’re all having a good weekend.

Ciao,

Nora

>Forget me quicklies…

>

I have yet to pick out a book from the bookcase that will grab my attention long enough for me to start reading it and finish it. I’m thinking about choosing the thriller by Mankell because his books usually fascinated me the most in the past. I’m a little bit worried that I’ll start reading it and lose interest somewhere one third through it as I have with every book that I’ve tried to read lately.
I must make a decision, though, and choose one because now I’m not reading at all and I see it as an intellectual waste of time. My mind is not being challenged and that is not good. I waste it watching dumb programs on television instead and that is mind numbing. There’s no excuse for it, except that I am mentally lazy. It will lead to early dementia at this rate. 
Just to make sure I don’t change my mind, I’ve already put the book on my sidebar. Now I’ll be forced to read it. That will be something I’ll do later this night then, while I wait to get sleepy again. It will be one way to keep me out of trouble. I will sit in my armchair and read until the birds start to chirp before dawn. Then I will be off to bed to get my beauty sleep. Hopefully, I will have dealt with one gruesome murder by that time. 
*
My hair is squeaky clean and it’s got a dent in it from me laying on it. I’ll have to wash it again to get rid of the dent or look lopsided.  It’s possible that if I’m up long enough, it will settle back down again. I keep pushing the hair in place. Maybe that will work. Where there’s a dent, there’s a bump and the one thing will have to be replaced by the other. It’s the drawback of having squeaky clean and very fine hair. 
I’m sitting here in my pajamas, at least, what functions as my pajamas. I’ve got on an oversized T-shirt that is from when I was a lot heavier. Two of me could just about fit in it now. It slides off my shoulders continually making it look like I’m trying to be sexy. Yes really, all on my own. These T-shirts are very comfortable to sleep in, but they are huge. I can’t believe I used to be that big. I pretend that was a completely different person in a completely different era and that it has nothing to do with me now. 
I did just now have to put on my bathrobe because I got a bit chilly. It still cools off during the night even though the daytimes are nice and warm. I do have the bedroom windows open. This all in effort to air out the place. My bathrobe is equally big on me and very comfortable. I fit in it time and a half. I washed it often enough, but it didn’t really shrink. 
*
I had my two obligatory cups of coffee and didn’t even finish the second one. Apparently I was not really in need of it. I feel surprisingly awake without it and don’t have any cobwebs in my mind. I’ve switched to a glass of cold milk and very nice it tastes too. I’m thinking very clearly without being overly optimistic and I think I have both feet firmly planted on the ground. This is not a night for hypo-mania. I’m as cool as a cucumber and I don’t mean the temperature. 
I suppose I will now start reading my book. I’m not nearly ready to go back to bed. I’m not sleepy yet and can stay up for a while longer. I hope you’re all enjoying your night. Sunday is coming up and it will be a day of rest and we must enjoy that. I’m sure some of you will be occupied with all sorts of chores, though. 
Ciao,
Nora