Friday, October 30, 2015
This year I am guilty of false advertising on my little blog, Not Whistling Dixie, because it says very clearly, "Daily reflections on my wonderful life". This year I have failed to post daily as in years past. Why is this? Is it because my life is not longer wonderful? Well, in some ways yes. Laura and I are in retirement planning mode, the world seems to be preparing for WWIII mode, and my preaching is not getting enough butts in the seats, and on occasion is getting butts off the seats when I offend someone. Is the word "butt" offensive?
So, thank you for visiting Not Whistling Dixie where I share several times a week about my transitional wonderful life. False advertising seems to be a reality in just about every aspect of life these days....politically, socially, educationally, spiritually, and certainly most forms of media. God help us to hear truth and honesty through it all.
Monday, October 26, 2015
Sometimes I see myself laying a foundation for a new understanding,a new reformation, something that will save humanity. Then someone wonders why we need a new understanding, and someone does not care for the pillar of the new foundation I am trying to lay.
In moments like those I need to see the building whose maker and creator is God, by faith, and not be overly anxious when people are not praising the pillars or seeing the need for the building, because I see it.
Saturday, October 24, 2015
Over 40 years of marrying and burying and it never gets easy, although my appreciation of the process of grieving and celebrating have developed over the years. Phyliss was over 80 but the last seven years involved the loss of memory in the disease called Alzheimer's.
Earlier in the week my visit with a loyal husband caring for his failing wife allowed me to experience the presence and absence of cognitive ability up close. My heart breaks for those dealing with this.
Thursday, October 22, 2015
Last Saturday I had two greasy hamburger meals and two rich servings of cake during two celebrations and long story short ended up in the ER with chest discomfort and gastric distress. I took my first upper GI Cocktail which consisted of three ingredients to calm the stomach... the most interesting being lydacaine? not sure of the spelling which puts whatever it touches into numbness.
I did make the worship service and did preach and have recovered to sleep again, but am now wondering if the whole thing was stress related because of a number of things going on in my life right now.
I have never tried to answer the questions in my title but I am thinking about doing some more research into handling stress and stress reactions. It has to be cheaper than moving to Hawaii.
Monday, October 19, 2015
We are enjoying pictures of Laura's class of 1975 reunion at our common Alma Mater, now Belhaven University. We enjoyed hearing about life journey stories from many in the weeks leading up to the weekend and from the pictures it looks like those who went had a great time catching up, seeing some retired teachers and observing the robust present of this growing educational campus.
I kind of snatched Laura the previous January for our wedding and the end of my youth work year in Alabama so this class was the year she finished her elementary degree and did some student teaching while she lived with me across town at Seminary, so we were not quite connected enough to feel the same as many, though some of them were dear friends from Laura's Junior year.
Anyhow, since this blog was started in 2008 after my 35th anniversary of my High School Class of 68 I find myself reflecting on how long and how short the fourty years of our active life and career really are.
When your living through those years it seems ardous, but after you reach the end you look back with a feeling of swiftness. Where did the time go. You have so many memories and joys and life experiences, but it still seems so fleeting.
Four seasons in a year, four decades in an adult life, and of course we all plan for long retirements. Life is to be cherished.
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
I am discovering that the older I get the more some forms of technology begin to defeat me. I have a brand new laptop with a bad installation of Windows 10 that has now changed the entrance password and locked me out.
I am now officially through until death do up part with my yearly struggles with Turbo Tax. We just don't get along.
I am now hopefully through with this two year flirtation with late tax filing caused by Turbo Tax and its unwillingness to cooperate with the unique tax situation of clergy.
I am amazed at the leftward drift of our country in things related to free enterprise but I am feeling a need to agree with the loss of jobs for factory and blue collar folks. We just can't support a future generation with fast food and store clerk jobs no matter how much they pay per hour, and if they price themselves and their products out of the market people will quit eating junk food and will continue to buy mail order products.
Sorry for the rant and stuff, mailing taxes at any time lifts my spirits.
Tuesday, October 13, 2015
Apparently they were related theologically with the prediction several years ago by the Radio preacher and were convinced he did good math but missed the day by exactly 1600 days, which was last Wednesday, so it leaked to the web that yes, the world would indeed be annihilated last Wednesday.
So the leader did indeed issue a statement the next day when the world was indeed not annihilated saying how dadgum surprised he was and how he would indeed have to continue studying the word to see what when wrong, but meanwhile, He is coming soon.
Indeed, this is why the world laughs at us...indeed, the ridiculous literalist number counting fundamentalists are giving the good and beautiful gospel a really stinky image. Indeed!
Sunday, October 11, 2015
This week many of our friends from up north have returned. We find our time occupied with routines for the winter different from those of the long summer season and we enjoy the reconnect with some special friends we see and dine with weekly.
Hints of fall in the air, but some 100s still seem to show up in mid October.
Saturday, October 10, 2015
In June of 2010 we ascended the hill to see the Waimea Canyon and the Napili Coast from the top and were met with pea soup fog. I had some photos from 2006 I cherish and was very sad that we did not find time to try again that trip. I set a secret hope in my heart that was fulfilled this month we again we spent some time up there with clear skies.
The Hebrews had a desire to see a city whose maker and builder was God, and the author of Hebrews said they never did, but that when they saw the day of Jesus they were glad.
All week long I kept thinking about our four previous visits to Kauai and how they all ran together in my mind and added up to about 40 days of island living. Only a short slice of our life time, but because the island is not, indeed, as close as San Diego which I also love to visit, there just seems to be something akin to a spiritual feeling when I see such views. I keep changing, and resort amenities keep changing, and recreational activities keep changing, but that coast line has changed so slowly that to my eye it is as changeless as just about anything we see.
Greatful to bask in a spiritual/physical site.
Friday, October 9, 2015
When I was 24 I was petting a Scott Terrier on a pastoral visit, He put his paws on my knees and wagged his tale, so I leaned down to pet him and he bit me on my nose, both incisors digging into my flesh as I pulled back instinctively, and I bled immediately and profusely and had four or five stitches on both sides, the scars of which I bear today.
Yesterday on a pastoral visit, I tried to enter a home through the front porch, was directed to the Kitchen door, turned to my right and hit an aluminum awning full force. At emergency care, which was caring but very slow, I got a tetanus shot and determine my wounds did not need stitches.
A far cry from the Apostle Paul's physical threats, but, you never know when a wrong move will cause great pain.
Favorites from day 4,5,6. Wiamea Canyon on the right and Napali Coast on the left of a mountain ridge make Kokee State park the best 36 mile round trip of beauty. Also the wild Chicken survivors of Iniki 23 years ago still over run Kauai and are bit players on the islands charm.
Thursday, October 8, 2015
When we are on our morning walks, which for me are photo walks, I am always playing catch up to my wife who strides ahead of me. But honestly, when I stop to snap a picture, it is a real and tangible way for me to extend my vacation and make sure I really remember I spent a week in that beautiful garden island. When I bought the largest photo picture frame that exists, it allows me to have momentary vacations in my mind as the picture of a time and place spends 10 seconds on display.
Here today are my favorite pictures of day one, two, and three. Two Rainbows one above one below, an oft repeated of wifey beside Kialua Falls.
Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Monday, October 5, 2015
We packed every day with sights and sounds. I sat and watched the ocean and sky early and late, walked the streets with happy couples and families, sat on the beach, swam through coral channels with colorful fish, flew a man made machine over the valleys and mountains that were formed by volcanic activity and seeded by natures variety.
We observed the economic history and diversity of the population with the new and old industries. But it was mostly about the unique eco system of a tropical island and all the people attracted to the lifestyle it allows, both short term and long term.
I will return to my desert home richer for the music we heard, the food we enjoyed, the vistas we saw from shore to mountian, and the fun of getting up and going each day. Home again is good too.
Sunday, October 4, 2015
A lovely return for great singing and guitar at Keokis Paradise, our favorite dining place for hebi fish, short tailed swordfish, a local Hawaiian specialty, very good texture and taste.
One more full day on Sunday, then home. This island is special.
Saturday, October 3, 2015
I felt myself surging backward and surfaces at what turned out to be a wave break area, and before I knew what was happening I was lifted and dropped on the reef, all in real time filming. I scrambled back in and only sustain to cuts to the hand I used to steady myself.
Today we are going back for another swim, and ziplining in the pm. Never to old to act young we say.
Friday, October 2, 2015
Yesterday ended out on the Lanai starring at one of the clearest dark skies I have even see and a starry, starry night as brilliant and full of twinking stars that mesmerized our third full day on Kauai. We ate at the new RumFire Restaurant at the Sharaton where we stayed on our 25th Anniversary 15 years ago. The resort was fun then, and I noted how many changes have taken place to make the experience modern. They had a number of fires surrounded by large rocking chairs that gave people a change to sit outside, the pool was remodeled again to add more outside eating areas, and many of the chandeliers have been updated.
Its just the nature of humanity to be creative in updating the decor. My complements on the resort experience. Yesterday we saw the quieter west side of the island including Wiamea Canyon and the Napali Mountain top. I erred with my travel mates in heading up the mountain with very little gas in our tank which gave them insecurity, My Bad!
Only 4000 ft up, but so near the wettest mountian top swamp on earth that it got cold up there. We had a return trip to glass beach, down in the harbor industrial area where trash was dumped and decades later polished glass fills the sand.
Another great day on Kauai filled with music, and the sound of waves crashing the shore.
Thursday, October 1, 2015
Yesterday was all about seeing the beautiful island as we departed early for a date with Jack Harter Helicopter and enjoyed an hour with one of the most experienced island pilots who has been flying the islands for almost 30 years. His ongoing commentary added to his swirling around to give great photo opps for both sides of the copter made for a magical morning.
In the afternoon we joined 18 young friends for a four hour sea tour of the Napali Coast with an hour of snorkeling and entering into the sea caves along the shore. It was a blast bouncing on those huge waves and getting sprayed. I followed a sea turtle for five minutes and got my underwater camera in good use. It was a day to cherish in and around the beautiful Honalea Bay and the Napali Coast.