Friday, May 21, 2010

7 Quick Takes

1- Watched a great flick this week, which I am counting under "Current Events" with Feche Boy; Amreeka. Palestinian refugees in America. Sisters, one who has been here for 8 years, and one newly arrived, from a west bank torn by strife, a wall and political unrest. Very well done, capturing one's longing for home and one's longing for a future at the same time. Bittersweet.

2-And at the same time I've been reading "Lipstick Jihad," by an Iranian American who returns to Iran in 99. Her insights into being a first generation American, her culture, returning to Iran as a working adult are fascinating. Her recounts of the suppression and oppression in Iran are disturbing, but it's an interesting look at a mysterious culture and the theme that Home is Home, no matter how dysfunctional plays throughout. While I'm fascinated by the Middle East, I LOVE AMERICA. Freedom to think, dress, believe. Bring it on.

3-After being dishwasher free for 7 years KB and I rejoiced at the sight of one in our leased house. We, however, continue to wash dishes by hand because the dishwasher just kind of moves the dirt and debris around from dish to dish rather than removing it. Sigh. otoh, washing dishes is one of the mundane, reflexive activites, that if kept under control (like dishes washed after EACH meal) can be peaceful. Dishwashing=peace. Yup.

4-The house re-build moves forward. This week a new drain field was incorporated into the landscape, insulation was added to walls, plumbing pipes were acquired, the cats returned from our friends house (THANK-YOU Stan & Cyndi!!!). We are still thinking mid-June for re-entry.

5- Beit Midrash. Exodus 16 & 17. The diaspora moves towards Mt. Sinai but encounters the Amalakites, intent on killing them along the way. Through a strange act of obedience, Moses' hands lifted, the Lord saves the company. Immediately after, they encounter another desert tribe, the Midianites, led by Moses' father-in-law. Jethro, devout priest of Midian, hears about Jehovah's mighty works and believes, offers a sacrifice, and gives wise counsel to Moses. Isn't that the way of it? Intent on vision and purpose, we are often accosted, out of the blue, by those bent on our destruction. And, just as importantly, we are blessed, out of the blue, by those committed to what's to come. I loved reading these 2 chapter together.

6- Viking Man attended a professional conference last week where they talked about research on returning vets that show trauma shrinks the size of one's hippocampus. Psychotherapy allows one's hippocampus to return to it's pre-trauma size. The hippocampus is responsible for memory and navigation. I think our year might explain the complete lack of ability I've had remembering names this year. It's not a normal "can't remember." It's, I so know this person and talked with them regularly and cannot access their i.d. can't remember.

7-Graduation season is upon us. Funny how one can categorize one's developmental stage by the celebrations one is invited to. Just before, during and after college everyone got married and wedding showers were the celebration du decade. Then baby showers, then celebrations as people received advanced degrees or opened new businesses or advanced in their careers, though those were mostly acknowledgments in yearly Christmas cards. And now my generation is going through round one of graduations with our kids, though more are to follow and soon enough we'll be inviting each other to those same kids wedding showers. Life is so very seasonal. What a relief that is, eh?

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