The Dueling Dutch Woman

The Adventures of a Middle Aged Dutch Woman

Archive for walk

>On a cold spring day…

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I’m sitting here freezing my buns off. The bedroom window is open and the heater is turned off. I’m airing out the place and stubbornly refuse to change the situation. I should put on more clothes, but I also refuse to do that. I guess I’m being very Calvinistic and must believe in minor suffering. As long as my teeth aren’t chattering, I think I can handle it. On top of everything, I had a glass of cold milk and that made me extra cold. I think I will have a cup of hot coffee next. It’s the most sensible thing to do.

My personal helper was here this morning and together we walked Tyke and did the dishes. Doing the dishes with another person makes them less of a bothersome chore. I had just received approval by mail to have 4 hours a week of personal help for another 5 years. Isn’t that wonderful? Now we won’t have to reapply every year, which is a long drawn out process. This comes at a time of major cut backs when many people have their applications turned down, so I got very lucky.

Getting the approval has taken a lot of stress off my shoulders because I was prepared to get turned down and was worried about opening the envelope when it came in the mail. As a matter of fact, I put it off for a whole day before I dared open it. You can imagine what a relief it was when I saw the year 2016 in the extension box. I suppose somebody is watching over me.

It’s overcast outside and windy. It’s a cold wind and it’s supposed to rain later on. It’s not pleasant to walk the dog. I do think I liked the sunshine better, but I can never make up my mind about these things. Inside it is cozy and I have some of the lights on. I’m glad that the dishes are done, but I still have to hang up the laundry and wash another load. 

I’ve closed the bedroom window and turned on the heater and put on a heavy cardigan. I’ve also had a cup of coffee. Common sense did prevail.

I’m very sleepy and need to take a nap. I slept 8 hours last night, but I guess that still wasn’t enough. I have a terrible desire to go to sleep. I think I will go lie down in my bed and get warm and comfortable.

Have a good day!

Ciao,
Nora

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>Always in the morning…

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I made the mistake of looking at the alarm clock this morning, not realizing that it had stopped because the battery had died. According to it, it wasn’t even early in the morning yet. I felt quite frustrated, because I was all done sleeping, but soon after that, I looked at my watch and saw that it was much later. I do have bad luck with batteries for the alarm clock and I hope this one is rechargeable. I’ll have to invest in a package of rechargeable batteries. That shouldn’t cost an arm and a leg and I do need them for other things as well. I’ll put them on the shopping list for next Tuesday along with a bottle of vinegar to clean the coffeemaker. 
The coffeemaker is making a lot of protesting noises when it spits out the last bit of water into the filter and I know it is because of the hard water and the fact that I haven’t cleaned it for a while. It’s so easy to forget. I do have to take care of it, because it’s a good coffeemaker, although I would prefer a Senseo machine, but I can’t really afford one of those right now. I want to get a real one and not one of those cheap imitations that you see for sale sometimes. I have no faith in them at all. I think they’ll break down in the shortest amount of time. 
Yesterday was a nice day, although it rained nearly all day. I didn’t let that bother me and took Tyke for a long walk in the drizzle. I decided we needed some fresh air and some exercise. We both enjoyed it very much, apart from the fact that we got wet. That’s not the worst thing that can happen, though. I pretended that I didn’t have a sore knee and walked like it didn’t bother me. I doesn’t seem to have hurt me at all. It’s going to be sore anyway, regardless of what I do. At this point, I think it’s the cut that hurts me most. 
There was speed skating on television in the afternoon and that did provide some diversion. The Dutch men did well and I can only be proud of them. I do enjoy watching speed skating, as it’s almost hypnotic to look at, especially if they skate a longer distance. It’s a very relaxing sport to watch, while being exciting enough too. The commentary is always very good and professional and as unbiased as it can get. There’s real admiration for the skaters from other countries, not just our own. 
I didn’t get a lot of chores done, but then that didn’t seem so important. There was not that much to do anyway. I played with Tyke a lot and gave him some of my undivided attention, which he appreciated very much. Gandhi participated as much as possible, unless it got too rough. She stuck as close to us as she could and retrieved Tyke’s rubber toy when it got stuck under the chair. That was good, because I didn’t have to kneel down and get it. That’s kind of hard on my knee.
The Exfactor came by and I gave him some of my strong coffee and that quite perked him up. I saw him come to live. I think he’d only had tea, which proves my point that it’s another beverage altogether. 
I went to bed early, despite my intention to stay up. By eight o’clock I was yawning something awful and longing to go to sleep. I put it off as long as I could, but there was no stopping it. I listened to the radio for a while, but there were football games on and that doesn’t interest me all that much. It seems that football season is never over. If so, I must miss the break. I was thinking about putting on a CD when I fell asleep. 
This morning I will go back to bed for a while, because it’s Sunday morning and there’s no need to rush the day. There will be enough hours to be up to do things in. It’s going to be cloudy and chilly today and there may be a shower now and then. It’s not very exciting weather. Mostly very dreary. It’s really the kind of weather that makes you want to have a hibernating Sunday, but I suppose I will go for another long walk with Tyke. We’ll take the same route we did yesterday, because it was such a great success. It was just long enough to not be too exhausting. 
I hope you all have a great day!
Ciao,
Nora

>It’s 2011…

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I realized that this time Christmas and New Year’s Eve weren’t as bad as last year, because they were the second time since my divorce that I lived through them on my own. The first time was much harder. I was very consciously aware that I was on my own and I felt sorry for myself. I had no such problem this time and made it through just fine. I felt very independent and sure of myself and like the solitude was a choice and not something that was forced on me. I was comfortable with my own company and I didn’t feel lonely. 
Last night, at the stroke of midnight, I cuddled and kissed Tyke and wished myself a Happy New Year. I couldn’t cuddle and kiss Gandhi, because she was hiding from the noise of the fireworks. She didn’t show up until an hour later. I petted her then and she followed me to the bedroom where I could finally get into bed along with Tyke very cozily. I was asleep soon after that. It does wear you out to listen to a barrage of fireworks for nearly one hour. 
Tyke did well. He was a little bit scared, but stayed close to me and I petted him the whole time and soothed his sometimes trembling body. He didn’t bark or whine and I thought he was very brave. 
I’m very much aware that this is a new year and I do have certain expectations of it. I have not really made any resolutions. I still have the ones I made along the line last year and I’ll continue on with those. They are very simple ones. Just some things I have determined to do for myself. Eat healthy, live frugally, be social and look at the bright side of things. Learn lessons from everything that happens. Nothing happens by chance. 
It’s late in the morning now and I have been sitting here for a while drinking coffee as if I have a hangover. I drank milk at midnight. No alcohol for me. I would have enjoyed a cold white beer, but I didn’t have any in the refrigerator. I survived without it too. It isn’t necessary to celebrate every significant event with booze. It’s a myth that it puts us in a better mood. Alcohol is a depressant, so who needs that? 
I’m going to see my sister and her friend this afternoon. She will come and get me so I won’t have to ride my bike through the sludge that is the thawing snow and ice. That’s a relief. I must eat something before I go. To celebrate the new year, I will eat something festive from my care package. The best thing I’ve been eating from it was the aged cheese. I have a piece of that every day and it’s quite good. I’m down to the last piece now and I will have that tonight, providing I have room in my stomach. It depends on what else I’ve eaten. 
I must get dressed in something festive too. I must enter the new year correctly with the right amount of color. It won’t do to look drab. 
Tyke and I will take a walk through what’s left of the snow. There’s actually quite a bit of it still. It isn’t thawing fast enough for me and on Sunday night it is supposed to start freezing again. I hope they got that prediction wrong, because the street isn’t nearly clean yet. It will be nice to be out in the fresh air and not break my neck in my new boots. They have proved to be very steady.
Hava Happy New Year all of you! May it be the best year ever. 
Ciao,
Nora

>The weekend.

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It’s Saturday, the first day of the weekend, but I’m not going to let that bother me. I’m going to act like it’s a day like any other day and not give it a different connotation. I will get dressed in a little while and take Tyke for a walk, even though he’s already done all of his business out back. It will get me in the proper mood for the rest of the day and I do have to go out this morning and go to the tobacco shop. I will be ready and in the starting blocks.
It hasn’t snowed any more, despite the predictions, and even though it snowed a lot in the west of the country, we are left with the couple of inches that we already had. I found out that my boots are snow proof, so that’s a relief, and they are warm enough. I just mustn’t walk around in wet slush with them. I also found out that if I wear thin socks in my hiking boots, they fit a lot better and I don’t get a blister on my toe that turns into a permanent sore spot. Of course, I haven’t tried them on long distances yet and will not. I’d rather not tempt fate. 
I think I will watch a lot of cultural programs on television today, because Saturday is the day for it, and there will be the news on. There will be sports later on in the day, but a lot of football matches got canceled because of the snow. The cultural programs are about art and literature and architecture, amongst others. They’re usually quite interesting, although not always to my taste, but challenging nonetheless. A person does need to be keeled out of his comfort zone sometimes. It gives you an opportunity to think about certain expressions of art and understand them better, even if you don’t take to them or are even repelled by them.

Well, I’ve just taken my medicines and I have to get the show on the road. It’s still dark and quiet outside and it will be a perfect opportunity to walk Tyke. We will have the world to ourselves. 
Have a good day!
Ciao,
Nora

>On a cold morning…

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Yesterday it snowed all morning, but it only gave us about an inch of snow. All that effort for such a little bit. It’s supposed to snow more today and we’ll see if anything serious comes out of the sky. A few inches of snow would be right. It’s very frustrating to see it snow all morning and to hardly have anything to show for it.
I do have the proper boots now and I want to test them out, although I tested them out on the slippery street last night and they seem to work fine and hold their grip. I do have to wear thicker socks with them, as they are a little bit roomier than my other boots. That’s okay, I was wearing thin socks and they may not have been warm enough, although that never bothered me.
Tyke was lucky, as I developed a tiny hole in the toe of one of my socks and I could give it to him last night and he was very happy with it and guarded it with his life when he thought I was going to take it away. I saved the other sock, as I have more just like it and they all match up, so sooner or later it will have a partner again.
My Wednesday personal helper and I took Tyke for a walk in the snow yesterday morning and very pleasant it was too, as it was not really cold and there was no wind to speak of. Tyke tried to follow a trail, but completely lost his bearings and went in a hundred different directions and plowed through the snow like a vacuum cleaner. I had to shorten the leash to get him to follow me properly, because he was beyond control, but it was nice to walk outside with the snowflakes falling down on us and the world looked very pretty and peaceful.
My SPN called me and told me that there was a place open in the creative therapy class at the SPC (Social Psychiatric Center) and that they had advised her to put in an application for me immediately, so that I would be able to start in January. The SPC has moved from its location downtown to a new building just around the corner from the office of my SPN, so it is a lot closer to me now and considering my agoraphobia, this is only serendipitous. I won’t have to go all the way across the river anymore into the complicated downtown area. That is one of the reasons why I didn’t go before. Hopefully, I will be more brave this time. 
Today is an empty day, although the Exfactor may come by. I don’t know if he’ll make it through the snow, though. I have to find enough things to do to entertain myself and I’m not quite sure if I can. I do worry about that a little bit. Maybe I have to get some more sleep first. I’ll take my medicines and try that. 
Have a great day!
Ciao,
Nora

>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