Friday, December 28, 2007

another tragedy. what is One to think. i read of Benazir Bhutto's life and really am struck by her glamour and demeanor amidst such ugly violence. her voice was so soft. apparently there were questions of corruption when she served as a prime minister. i can't say i know. and then, poof, gone. none the less, what a family legacy; to have had four members die in violence. and in the larger picture, the reaction i hear (i only have a radio and no television.) comes across like a pulsing to me, like the pressure is building...add this to what's already stewing...fear, poverty, natural disaster and least one can say It's all alive. and i ask again, just what is One, ( all of Us) to think?

well, we get up and it's another day.

i am reading about forming a non-profit and left unsure of whether i can do this myself! i could hardly sleep last night as i thought of possible names and purpose. i don't want it to be limited anymore than i want it to be something un-accomplishable. and this is just the beginning! today we will have lunch with a gentleman who has worked in Africa in stoves and has a non-profit. i am looking forward to hearing about his experience and perhaps to pick his brain a bit!

on a personal note, i am doing better with each day. yesterday i walked two miles! PT still is uncomfortable. i am so fortunate to have such a dedicated team of therapists, even if they try to "kill" me in the process. and i got to visit little Louie, Tina and Ed's baby. he is such the little person and a pleasure to know.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

i'm in physical therapy now. today was my first day. eee-yow, that stretch over each hip, and in opposite directions, i believe it's called traction, manual traction. like telling your body you will be this long...and then the hands move apart stretching the skin in opposite directions. i was tight but geeez. and then i'm on my stomach and while michael stretches my spine upward, eee-yow, from the incision up, i am imagining my incision being torn open. ...yikes. PT can indeed smart. yet physical therapists are amazing. i had been looking forward to this day! i'm anxious to know what i can do, what i can't, what exercises are going to make me feel put together right again? so yes, i learned my first exercises and just now did them here at home. it'll be twice a day for more than 6 weeks. so, now i sort of hurt and think it's time for ice and maybe a pain pill. i did that earlier and slept for 2 hours! the only problem is that i'm still not quite done with my christmas things. oh dear. it just will have to wait. (i'm printing photos and sending a special note off to certain families and friends in peru.) i thought it wouldn't be too strenuous. WRONG. in truth too much sitting is not good. yet, another little pearl that i learned today! i should be resting with ice in bed three times a day! in bed!! no sitting more than 1/2 hour. so it looks like i need to slow it down a bit, even if it is christmas.

Monday, December 17, 2007

I've uploaded NEW stove reports as my Dad pointed out a couple of numeric errors. Can't have that!! I also added the spanish version. There are some other typos that Ellen found for me, but will get to those later. So you'll see those options on the sidebar. love, Laurie

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Merry Christmas to all who read my blog!
Thanks, and love,
Oh, i see i forgot to mention i have attached a slide show of Life in Sipascancha, originally made to share with the kids at North Branch School in Virginia. it's on the sidebar!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

good morning! buenos dias! i am now 6 days out from my surgery! i am still in a foggy cloud, induced pharmacologically by muscle relaxers and pain pills, but the cloud has cleared some thankfully due to less medicines and more days out of the general anesthetic i was given. and geez, look, i can even type!! (at least for the most part! ) i was going to translate to spanish but will pass on that...

so how can i thank shelley and claudia enough for coming down here and staying with me? for shelley to set aside all her other worries and work to help me out, and claudia too. they both had left their houses in questionable situations due to the big storm up there. that's friends for 'ya!

we've all been girlfriends for well over 25 years. they are actually more like sisters than friends. we all met back in the day when we all had our little boys. actually, there was one woman we knew who had two little girls and she would just be beside herself when she saw her daughter jessie, peeing, standing up right alongside those boys!! (jessie had more little boy-friends than little girl-friends, and i'm confident that now she pees sitting on the toilet !) so, during the time we've known each other a few husbands/men have come and gone and back again and our boys are all grown up. claudia and brigido have grandkiddies! our shelley had breast cancer and is now nearing the 5-year mark. so phew, we have seen each other through alot! way back then we took all the boys camping, never very far, but far enough to make it seem a vacation. we once won a prize for building a sand octopus during the Long Beach sandcastle building contest! at one point shelley are i were dating the same man--he didn't know we were best friends--and as i described this guy's shoes to shelley, she said, "hey, wait a minute...i know those shoes..." and we both dumped him. as the boys got older and left home, we'd get together at least a couple times a year for an "adventure" of some sort. shelley's son alex went to iraq and we would all feel as if he was our own over there as shelley told stories about his time there. claude and brigido visited me in peru. shelley and i often joined other friends in annual backpacking trips or winter fun, skirting possible grizzly bears, swatting gigantic mosquitos while carrying our canoe, or attempting to cross country ski, but mostly entertaining our other friends. we've done all sorts of things together and now. eeeks, we're getting older together too. we talked about it as we did our facials. (thanks, claude for bringing the lovely clay mask!) we chatted about all the things women are doing to themselves to appear younger. ugh. really our generation of women has been under a lot of pressure!! when little girls, we were raised to be good wives and not to take off to the other side of the country and homestead. (as claudia did.) or to hitchhike, work on a fishing boat, or have children (nearly) out of wedlock or to go off to places like peru working for free. (as i did.) or that one of us could almost die of something like cancer (as happened to our dear shelley.) or that we'd end up doing alot all alone. (as we all did, still do sometimes, and for a variety of reasons that caused each of us to grow up the hard way for our childrens' sake and then for our own.) magazines always portrayed women our ages back then as trim, happy-to-be supermoms with big smiles on our faces, we who could do it all even without husbands. yes, our children were predicted to be total failures as a result of growing up in single parent households. we lamented often feeling we were from another planet just never quite fitting in. is it no wonder we still say that?! Now we are sold all sorts of remedies for our menopause, hair color has reached new technological advances, and we have wrinkle creams, laser treatments, and various surgical procedures to keep us looking like we haven't lived through all we have, or like we should be ashamed of it.

So the biggest hug and kiss goes to beautiful claudia and shelley for coming to springfield, making themselves at home, being so sweetly patient with me and for just being here like always. and of course another big hug and kiss to my sweetie steve, for all his help, coming back and forth, not to mention just the right music to recover by!

oh well, back to printing pictures to send to friends here and in peru. i hope to send a little contribution toward hot chocolate and sweet rolls in the villages. and a few others are on my list as well....

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

well, i think the tree pictured below has likely lost it's leaves. especially after the storms we've been having. i have been following particularly the north coast, where all my oldest buddies live. it sounds as if astoria and vicinity was just pounded! what a trip those waves must be! 30 feet!! i will have to pass seeing them in person, as tomorrow i am having surgery on my herniated disc. the culprit is L-5-S-1 and i having a minimally invasive procedure to relieve the herniation and my trapped nerve root that has been causing my right leg to be painful and my right foot numb. and speaking of my buddies, shelley should be arriving tomorrow to look after me for a few days, with claudia set to arrive on friday to take over from there. that is if they can find a way out of astoria! i looked up the newspaper (the daily astorian) and it seemd like every route out of that town was closed or flooded. hmmm.

so other news is that steven (i have taken to now calling my sweetie "steven"!) and i did a whirlwind visit to the north/slightly southeast to visit family. (hence, the "steven" thing!) all went very nicely given the potential. traveling with my back was tricky but i managed fine and got to meet everyone as did steven. and we're back to tell about it! i will also post the slideshow we did for the great kids from North Branch School! (remember they collected and donated pencils for the students in Sipascancha?) it was fantastic!

and, maybe i will post a few pictures later.

so, i have a few books in line to read during this recovery thing. i will be trapped over here in springfield for at least a week, maybe more as i am not allowed to drive. so i have Love in the Time of Cholera, (i cannot believe i haven't read this but will now.) and on the non-profit scene, How to Form a Non-Profit Corporation and a book about grant writing. as i told my peruvian buddy carlos, i am "making lemonade from these lemons", for him, ie., limonada de mis limones, he had not heard of this saying in spanish and now uses each time he writes me! if i have to be off from work for 6 weeks, i intend to make it fruitful in some way. that is in between my physical therapy and hopefully swimming at the pool right here in downtown Springfield.

so, chao for now........