FOR AULD LANG SYNE

 

Should auld acquaintance be forgot

And never brought to mind

Should auld acquaintance be forgot

And auld lang syne

I guess poet Robert Burns was in a sentimental mood when he penned this ditty in 1788.  Bet he had no idea it would become the anthem heard round the world on the day the ball drops.  This song about preserving old friendships and looking back over the events of the year is certainly apropos.

Writers and Bloggers are busy doing their Year in Review. The media and talking heads will all be serenading us daily with their particular take on the Year That Was.

For many, 2016 was a tough year, full of national tragedies, political upheaval, personal trials, and of course, unexpected deaths. The image of PBS Journalist Gwen Ifill’s smiling but now silent image on the 6 o’clock news still unnerves me.

I like to think the metaphor for my life is….Like a song and as I reflect back on this year …a song is playing somewhere in the background.  Kinda like…Stevie Wonder’s Songs in the Key of Life.

Like most recent New Year’s, I found myself soundly asleep in 2016 when the ball dropped.  Only to be awakened shortly afterwards by a phone call from the One Who Remains Nameless or more recently daughter J or one of the grandsons who revels in the fact that he is now old enough to stay awake until midnight.

Yes, Virginia, there were the years of dressing up in my finest glad rags and hitting the town for the passage of the Old into the New…but like most things life/time  intervened and the need to go cavorting out in the streets with all kinds of drunk, high strangers has ceased to appeal to me.

I do know quite a few people who find themselves on their knees in church at midnight, but I often wonder about the safety of those folk when they leave the church en route to home and come face to face with an errant drunk driver coming back from da club.  Much like those unfortunate souls in Charlestown who met their untimely and tragic end while trying to save a soul…in church.

Despite my Rip Van Winkle entrance to 2016, the year proved to be one of challenges for family, close friends and even Moi!

It began with my 90+ father’s unexpected trip to the ER and an ensuing 12 hour wait and see game played by the hospital staff only to be unceremoniously tossed out of said hospital because my father’s PCP thought “he would be better off at home”. Despite documented lab and test results to the contrary showing a need, in the words of the treating Resident, for if nothing else a few days of observation.

The months that followed became somewhat tortuous for my father who up until that time was spry, sharp of mind, and except for occasional bouts of arthritis in his knees a poster child for AARP.  I mean the man mastered the computer many years ago and regularly emails, searches the internet, and googles with the best of them. His collection of scrapbooks documenting important stages of his life is a hobby with a purpose that keeps his mind sharp and old age at bay.

Watching his cognitive skills decline as a result of an unfortunate happenstance was difficult, but more difficult was the way the medical profession responded to his condition.  I don’t want to belabor this issue but several tersely written letters from me to the appropriate folk at higher levels of Medical Authority did not go unnoticed and I think helped to speed up the diagnostic and treatment phase of his condition.

The pen IS mightier than the sword.

Right on the heels of my father’s illness, my body began to flirt with what became a 4 month descent into uncertainty and downright fear as I struggled with an unnamed illness that resisted diagnosis.  Fortunately, in the capable hands of my PCP, Dr. E, I was finally diagnosed by Summer’s end and began the ascent to recovery.

During those dark months of my illness, I watched as my closest friend struggled with her fight against the big C.  She is and remains the definition of a Trooper, and became my hero as I watched her undergo devastating chemo treatments, return to work the next 2 days infusion intact, without missing a beat.  All the while maintaining her part time Vendor business and being the Matriarch of her large and needy clan. Fran is the definition of a Shero and watching her fight became my Will to overcome the demons that had invaded my body.

Troubles don’t last always….

2016 had its bright moments as well.  Much of the goings on at the White House with the first AA President and his Lady Michelle were designed to take our minds off the dreary, nasty battles between the candidates fighting for the title to become King.  Watching First Lady Michelle and the President host galas, state dinners, and musical performances at the White House was a great distraction and mood lifter for many of us.  Even if Congress thwarted the President’s attempts to bring about Real Change…the first couple showed America…when Others go Low…they go High… AND  dang it..they know how to Par tay.

And now we are about to be Trumped…I’m not sure exactly sure what that means, not being a card player, but it has some ominous undertones.

However, Readers, I remain hopeful that the same spirit that brought us Hamilton, Memes, Drones, Bacon flavored ice cream, Kengen Water, Quinoa, Turmeric, Bathroom signs proclaiming P…People Room and Garth Brooks concerts where all tickets start out at $67 only to be resold  online for up to $2,000…is a Country/People that can Survive Anything!

Happy New Year !

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Clothed in My Right Mind

(Reader, This post is from my original Blog started in 2013. It was a poem looking back at that year and ironically not much has changed. I share it with you as a  way to end this year since Father Time once again approaches.  Feel free to comment/share. Thanks for Reading..115 See you in 2016!)

Mourned with the nation

once again

As halls of learning

Became graveyard for

Innocents.

A reminder of my own

Brush with violence

In the classroom.

Endured silently as close friends

Battled the big C

Praying for their strength

And God’s mercy.

Where is the cure for

This unspeakable disease.

Battled my own

Insidious malady

That like some thief

In the night

Robs me of sleep

And my Memory.

Marveled as my Readership

Climbed to new Heights

Propelled by the Musings

of a Canine with an attitude.

Witnessed two couples

Become Betrothed

Renewing my blistered faith

In Happily Ever After.

Watched painfully as another

Sizzled and burned

The vows of Matrimony

Sacrificed on the

Altar of Deceit.

Relished the fervor

Of an Unexpected Romance.

That awakened a spark

And just as quickly

Flitted and Died.

Marveled as hordes of folks

Worshipped at the throne

Of Scandal.

While the real scandal

A President without support

Played out up the road.

Bid adieu to a Pillar

Of the community

And of the family.

Her battle courageously fought

At peace now finally at Home.

Labored in my Jardin

Harvesting food for my Soul

Feeding family and neighbors

And daily stopping to smell

The Rose.

Celebrated parents, brother

Sister, and two girls.

Not always in harmony

But always in Love.

Confided in good girl friends.

Sharing both highs and lows.

Thankful for the voice

At the end of the phone.

Celebrated life in the faces of

I, J, K and D

Becoming Men of the Family.

Hoping that the New Year

Already frigid and cold

Offers a Chance

To once again

Pursue the Dream.