Wednesday, August 29, 2007

In Case Of Emergency

My friend Louise is supporting (unwaveringly) my trip and but she is beginning to turn her lip under when discussing my imminent departure. So.....being the friend that I am...... I have made her an emergency Teri Kit to help her get through it. If the separation anxiety gets the best of her, she can break it open and indulge.

Barry Manilow Greatest Hits CD
Corks from my two favorite red wines
My teal tiara
A pack of tissues
An early Christmas present
My favorite book about Paris (Happy Birthday to us!)
A stinky sock (so she knows what she's REALLY missing)
A scallop shell (symbol of the Camino)
A picture taken of us at Pat's Christmas party
And a mild "MEN!" greeting card (we don't man bash!)
Dark chocolate (or the closest facimile I could find on short assembly)
My ring and its magic yellow egg for safekeeping. (The bunny stays home.)
THE share bear
I'm-missing-her-too-but-don't-want-to-think-about-it air.

And I implore Team Teri to keep her IMd, emailed, Sushi Tuesday'd, wined, dined and otherwise distracted until I return.

Full Moon

Some friends of mine did the full-moon-from-the-chair-lift-at-Sundance gig last night. I knew ahead of time that I could just not commit to it so close to leaving. A good call on my part because I worked until 12:30 AM again.

I missed the eclipse - but several pilgrims posted about seeing it on the camino. I'm sure, in the middle of a tiny village, in the middle of Spain, this was a spectacular experience.

This morning *yawn* while I drink coffee and work on yet another before-I-go-commitment (only three left today), I'm looking out the kitchen window and see the full moon in the west. If I cupped my hands together to make a circle, the space is the total amount of sky view I have through my leafy trees. And there in the center is the moon. Hanging out, looking cool.

And month from now....I'll be in Spain and hanging out with it.

I just watched my countdown counter switch from 2 days, 48 hours, 2880 minutes to 1 day, 47 hours, 2879 minutes. And tomorrow - I get to say - tomorrow! After that I get 39 days of vacation....37 of which will be in Spain. I LOVE MY LIFE!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

New Word - Assticulate

A friend was typing an IM last night and was saying someone was articulate (Mr D). Her kitties were helping her type and it came out as "asticulate". To which I responded......NEW WORD - ASSTICULATE (verb) attempt at making a valid point while pulling the WAG (wild ass guess) out of one's ass.

It won't qualify for The Washington Post's Annual Neologism Contest because I changed more than one letter. But it will provide humor for years to come for anyone dropping onto my site.

Energizer Bunny

I have MORE work to do tonight. It will wrap up my warp speed do-it-before-you-go-list of things to do.

A few associates have dropped by today to wish me luck. A few customers have sent notes of encouragement. My friends are getting pouty about me being gone. The return parties are being planned - a greeting party of faux nuns and priests at the airport, sharing my Spanish wine with Chef Kent himself.

I am in awe of all of this. How can I not succeed?

I came home to a trimmed tree tonight. It was on my to do list, when I would be able to pull it off before I left, I don't know. The trimmer angel hath visited!

EVERYONE has worked very hard to make it a walk-away-without-looking-back event for me (contridictory to my type AAA personality). How can I ever repay EVERYONE?

Thank you ALL so very, very much for your interest and your assistance. My love to you all.

I LOVE My Sales Team!

Not only do I love them (they keep me employed and thus traveling) they love me back! Check this out:

Dear Princess,Good luck on your journey. I hope that it turns out to be everything you want it will be. I wish you health, strength, but most of all I hope that you find as many people on your journey that are as kind as you because you will need them. Be safe my friend. Gonna miss you.

Kids - Pay Attention!

When your algebra teacher speaks....listen.

You will need this information at some point in your lifetime (it's a badge of success).

Check this out:


This is my morning!

Monday, August 27, 2007

My Dream

I'm sure I dream, but I hardly ever remember them if I do. Last night I went to bed early so I was pretty restless in the pre-dawn hours. But...I do remember what I dreamed about this morning and it was WEIRD.

It was about the place you go when it is time to die. Not ghastly or anything. You just go there, get essentially euthanized and move on to the afterlife. However......I didn't know how I got there, I hadn't heard anything about it prior to my arrival and when it was all explained to me, I was like, "well how about that?". My next question was if I had to deal with it right then or could I hang out a bit longer. Whomever (or whatever) seemed to be in no real hurry. I started looking around, pretended like I was interested, quickly and quietly gathered up my stuff, slipped out a back door, booked a flight and left for France.

I'm not going to shop there anymore.

I'm Official!!

My Camino Blog was accepted into the Way of St. James Web Ring!! I'm at the top position of the hub with a little yellow NEW beside it. I haven't been in a web ring since having to handcode web pages back in the day of Ronnie Dog (you can still find residual pages cached on the big ole Internet from WAY BACK THEN!).

You can get to the blog there from here: and then if you want more, jump into the web ring at the bottom of the page.

Poodle Power!!

Please visit the blog below and leave a comment in my favor. The baby needs the poodle costume. It may be her only chance at pinkdom.

Please tell your friends and ask that they tell their friends. This is an important cause.

Poodle Power.

Poodle Power.

Workin It - Workin It

Checking into, I see I only have 82 hours till take off.

At the rate I'm going this week half that time will be spent at work. And I'm not going to complain for one second.

This the season - budgets for our customers and budgets for us. I actually LOVE both! The customers' budgets mean money for us and my budget means salary increases and stuff for my team. I feel like Santa Claus - projects for everybody!

So off to la-la land. Gotta feed the beasts and I'm told I should have a package waiting for me. (I LOVE PRESENTS!) Wash, rinse, repeat.....but only for a few more days :)

The Time Has Come

I have before me this wonderful pilgrimage - full of nature and God.

But to press forward, I also have to leave behind some things:

I have to leave with my brother in Hospice.

My friend in the hospital.

My friends with whom I frolic - here and afar.

The job I dearly love.


My sorrows and my losses.

All of these people and these events and have gotten me here today - ready to walk to the end of the earth.

You're all in my pocket (I'd put you in the pack, but then you'd be on my shoulders and that would be a major bummer).

Hello Today!

Life changes quickly.

I ran across an email today that I received last November:

Hi Babe,

I’ve been reading your blog for about 20 minutes now. Every day it fills my heart with a greater love and warmth for you as I discover more and more about your soul and your mind. I am the luckiest man in the world to have you in my life. I don’t think it’s possible to appreciate you more, but know tomorrow will bring a new revelation to make that happen.

I absolutely, totally, completely, most assuredly, and unwaveringly Love You Teri (last name removed)! Thank you for the gift of your heart.

(smiley face)

While at one point in time a few months ago this would have had me unloading a bucket of tears - today it does not. It is what it is - the course was not mine to chart. I'm better for having had the relationship, but really no worse for the wear for not having it now. I learned lessons I would not have otherwise have had the opportunity to learn. I learned that I was still lovable. I was able to understand what really happened to Robert and why I was helpless to "fix" that too. And so the light at the end of the tunnel is another evolution of me -which at the end of the day is the only change I can truly influence. I'm less timid than I was before to be loved and exponentially more appreciative of those that have endured the passage of time and trials and continue to love me.

Hello today! I can't wait to meet tomorrow!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Weekend End

It's 9:00 pm and I'm heading to bed.

The work work did not get done. I can go in early and tough it out.

What did get done was enjoying the capricious weather, uber cleaning, updating my iPod with some music D sent me, exchanging emails, downloading a movie to take along and thinking about my brother, girlfriend and daughter.

I talked with my girlfriend for awhile tonight. She's got hashmarks on her hospital room whiteboard noting the "Days Served". Six days left until she's out of the "major woods" and into the "woods". Oh and she hates the hot pink poodle costume I sent for her soon-to-arrive daughter. I told her she can't be a red crayon her first Halloween it just isn't right. She said she's going to have to have a long talk with the girl about her "special" Aunt Teri.

So today was comuning and thinking about those I love and tomorrow will be work. Sounds like I finally got it right.

Can't Do It

I need to do some work stuff today. I can't. I have the work, I have a deadline and I can't get into gear. So I'm going to switch gears. Keep going with my weekend, plow through the chores I have left for the trip. I'll go to bed early and into the office early and stay there until it is done. I didn't say when on Monday I would turn my project in. It is a dangerous stone to throw because my job is so dynamic...but I'm going to toss it out there anyway.

It is thundering and raining and throwing a hailstone or two every few minutes. I'm having a much better time sitting on my porch watching nature play around. And...because of the rain, I can scratch watering the lawn off my list of things to do today. The air is cool and flirty feeling. After all the hot weather we've been having, it seems a waste to just let it pass.

I'll let my mind float for a bit while I sip my stateliquorstore imported French wine and dream about the carnival of flavors my tastebuds are about to experience for the next month. I'm trying to recall some French phrases like how to say "thank you", since I'll need it for the better part of a day (to be polite). How on earth could I forget Merci? One of my favorite french words (I only know a handful). It sounds so tinkly and animated when heard in France. My Spanish is still limited, but the pronounciation will be correct for what I figure out how to say. I figure it will hone itself during "the walk".

Whatever comes from the trip now will be what it will be. The trip is now up to St. James and God. The remaining time here will be making sure all left behind in a good, home, friends, cats, etc. That's my responsibility.

My Lucky

Just four days until I begin my current "journey of a lifetime".

I say current because my life seems only to build - a constant crescendo of facinating experiences and people. I long ago abandoned the fear of a climax in my life's experiences.
At some point, when I'm too decrepit to walk, my feable brain will wander back in time to lots of lovely places.

I have "key" people in my life, who along the way have carried me over obstacles, pushed me through portals, pulled me out of trees and pulled me through forests and up mountains - literally and figuratively. And a select few, by knowing that tomorrow I get to see them, hear their voice or read a tender note, sail me through today - no matter the challenge that I face.

This is my lucky and I am blessed.

Saturday, August 25, 2007


My daughter came down to see me this weekend. Her fiance didn't come - they decided to take separate trips.

She expressed her disappointment in his actions because he often spends time outside on the phone with other people, doesn't ask her to go with him when he goes somewhere, and he spends a lot of time on the computer which doesn't invite interaction between the two of them. She commented about feeling unappreciated because she'd been getting groceries after working long hours and making sure there were nice meals on the table.

This morning we went together to do shopping for her son for school. This afternoon she worked on the computer, spent several hours on the phone, and just left without a word to go out for the night with a friend. She's mentioned doing the same tomorrow with another friend.

She'd sent me the nicest note earlier this week and I was really looking forward to her coming to see me. I had worked very hard this week to be ready for my trip so I could spend time with her this weekend. I turned down some other invites so we could be together. I took them out for breakfast and dinner.

I can honestly say I completely understand how she feels.

Friday, August 24, 2007

The Twins

I have a really close friend at work. We are almost inseparable these days. Our friendship has grown slowly, but has gone very deep. We keep finding things that we have in common. The most recent discovery goes back to the early 80's. We both had daughters and we both made our girls the same dolls.

She has her daughter's doll at her home and my daughter brought her doll for the photo opportunity:

Need Your Prayers

This is my brother. He needs your prayers please.

(The portrait is painted by his wife and is "spot on" him and his work. He too is an artist.)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I Love My Friends!

This week has gone so quickly. Work has been busy and just nuts. Thankfully so! I'm training my replacement, customers need quotes (yea!!!), conference calls are to be had, extra hours of work needed. I'm so grateful my vacation cover is working with me now. There's enough work for the two of us.

And then my wonderful amigos and amigas are throwing a party for me. I feel a little strange. I'm just going on vacation (OK a little bit of an exciting one). We're having Paella, Spanish wine: Albarino (white spirit) or the Rioja (red spirit) and smallbites (tapas?). I'm so lucky. How thoughtful everyone is! D - wishing big time you were going to be here to play with us!

And this weekend - a kidlet will be home. Can't wait to see her before I take off for my fun! Only 200 hours to go :)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

My Next Project

Today I worked, I walked, I'm writing, I have a glass of wine and homemade wockamole. I love being an adult. I can eat what I want for dinner - and this is it. I can play letter games or roll my eyes because someone else does it.

A few years ago I had a crap boss. (I've been fortunate and that label in my life has been limited.) He gave me an interesting gift once though. It was a little spiral notebook and the cover was dark green crushed velvet. He said it reminded me of him. I did NOT ask for the correlation. But....

One day, I was so overwhelmed by sadness in my marriage. I took my little book, some flourescent highlighters, red licorice laces, Pez, my Walkman cassette player and went to the beach. I drew pictures of things I saw. Yes, wtih highlighters. I don't recall crying, but I do remember feeling very, very alone, but also knowing that I would somehow, with my little book and bright markers, be OK. In that book, I wrote down observations of couples very much in love, some billboard comments, stuff I made up: When Harry met Sally it wasn't time, etc. I made a list of a dozen or so things I wanted to do some day.

After I completed my juvenile adventure, I took off in the car down a road that followed the waterfront. I ended up somewhere near Tacoma. Via backroads that's pretty damn impressive.

When I got home I was asked what I did that day. I explained it. "Why would you do something like that?"

Things like going to the Issaquah zoo, flying to a Barry Manilow concert, be skinny so I could priouette, etc. Later I had included seeing Barry in Vegas. And I did - I was invited to his PBS special taping in December 2005. Later I added things I wanted to do after my youngest daughter left home.

Some of these things I've done. With some of them the meaning has changed. I think now, I would add more exotic places and probably some service projects (like Mexico next year). Some are silly, some are grand.

My mother died in 1993 when she was 76. Lots of my family seems to pass on in their 70's.

I've started a blog that I will start working on when I get back. If I Live Until I'm 75. It has a count down counter - like my camino site does. I will know, based on this estimate, how many days, hours, minutes and seconds I have to live my life wholly. It isn't a death timer. Heavens - if I can keep up the fun, I want to sprint past our family's averages! What I want is a reminder that live is precious, special and my own canvas to paint it as I can. This life is a gift and I've been blessed time and time again. I don't want to forget and I don't want waste a single second of joy.

Bring on those markers folks....we have something special to start creating!

I Don't Get It

There was a note stuck on my door about a boy doing an Eagle Scout project (major boy requirement here in Utah). His project was to assemble hygiene kits. He was asking for something like $4 for each one and his goal was to make 150.

I called him up. I travel for my work and have a box or two of shampoos, soap, mouthwash, etc. that I've schleped home from the hotels. Some is darn nice stuff. Nicer that I would buy for myself.

He can't - he has to make them out of specially purchased merchandise. The whatever LDS church society that he's doing it for's requirement. Huh. He has to collect cash, to buy it from a church store (I'm guessing on that), and then assemble the kits.

He declined the items I have, that I hauled back with me - for just this purpose.

I'm now going to officially sound old....

First - Eagle Projects used to be a difficult, grow up the boys, think on your feet and outside of the box endeavor. It required blood, sweat, tears and acquiring the skills to rally a community together for a CAUSE. It was not sticking notes on doors with a time indicated where they would return to collect cash, to buy church sponsored supplies to give to whatever need was determined by the church. This is paint by number and I think it's a shame.

Grumble, grumble

More Thoughts

My daughter sent a email today. In the middle there was these two sayings. I related to them.

To handle yourself, use your head.
To handle others, use your heart.

God Gives every bird it's food, but He does not throw it into its nest.

Monday, August 20, 2007

I Missed The Boat

Oh boy, did I miss the boat. Literally and figuratively. Not that I didn't realize it then or many days since.

Dear Prince Henry - thank you for making me feel, again, like the most royalist Princess in the land.

You are the one person who has always placed me on a pedestal and never, ever, even under probable cause - (OK, OK due cause), attempted to dethrone me.

To read what you wrote today to all my friends and family and people I barely know (the guy from Spanish class and Customers :-) is surreal - that anyone would say something so sweet and kind about anybody and you said it about me.

Yes, I'm weepy and humbled and honored and feel very, very special.

Thank you.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The Best Mistake I Ever Made

I wanted some Sonny's on chicken for dinner tonight. I like to poach the chicken when I drown it in BBQ sauce. I didn't have any stock open and I didn't want to have any hauting my refrigerator. I had water and one (of two left) bouillon cubes. Looking in the cabinet I found some Savory. I had no idea how it worked/tasted. I went to sprinkle some into the water and spilled it in (my MO). Oh like so yum! Now I'm debating whether I want the BBQ sauce or not.

The other day I stumbled across the apron I brought back from France for SweetStuff. Maybe I should go put it on. Nahh - I don't have any dessert fixins'.

Team Teri

I have the smartest friends! Thanks Louise - thanks Dwight!

My pack is paring down. Being able to talk about my logic, ithinkineeds and general whining we've come up with alternatives and ideas. I don't have to haul an extra pair of shoes from here to kindom come I'm sending the 2nd pair and backup supplies ahead. The correos (post office) will hold perigrino/perigrina packages for a month. I've figured out day 15 and a resonable sized town so I can locate it. Waiting will be my favorite, shoes, extra insoles, the rest of my vitamins, real shampoo, conditioner, razor, etc. I'll toss the first pair (OUCH) when then 2nd ones come. Which shoes? The lime green ones of match my pack! I might be dusty and trail worn arriving in SDP - but I'll be stylin! LOL.

Plan B

I found a little scrap of paper I tore out of a catalog. It's about a t-shirt. I used to be a T-shirt collector - but I really don't like wearing them - I'm either a tank top or sweatshirt girl - two seasons :) Anyway..... the shirt said:

Life is all about how you handle Plan B

This is is SOOOOO ME! My friends are all about Plan B anymore. Anything that goes sideways has an alternate plan for them too! And when I get stuck - the first question is "and Plan B consists of????? We know you have one!!".

I like Plan B. It says that most likely you know things won't go the way you planned - life, business, love and family consists of too many variables. And I've found that if I have a Plan B, or C or D, that when things don't go as planned, it's really OK. At least I'm not stunted by the change. And, well, take it from our friends at Microsoft and Excel.....after Z comes AA, AB, AC, etc.. There's a whole world of options out there. One has gotta work - right!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Taking Care Of Business (Or Trying To)

I'm trying to get all my bills scheduled to be paid while I'm gone. The Internet is a wonderful tool for this. I made my payments this month and I scheduled my best guestimates for next month.

I'm a conscientous person and try to think ahead. But not everyone appears to care that this is the case. A couple of stories.

The first story is about a major credit company that requires all expenditures put on the green card to be paid each month. I have a couple of auto charges (can you say STARBUCKS and another) that come up each month. I just traveled and my expenses have already been reimbursed - so I wanted to pay that too. My payment due date for August just past and I'd already paid that. Now said green card company, on line, would allow me to pay for the outstanding amounts (remember I technically have a zero balance), but would not let me pay the little extra that I know will pop up between now and the next billing cycle. I was on put on hold off and on and talking to India for about half an hour. And in asking about what then happens if I have charges while I'm in Spain and can't get to a computer to pay my next bill. ....the conversation went like this.... your credit is fine, charge what you want. OK, but what if I do and I can't get to a computer to pay it next month? OK, no problem, just call the toll-free number. I won't be where the toll free number works. OK, no problem, you have good credit. Yes I do until I don't make a payment on time. What can I do if I have charges and the billing period closes? OK, no problem. How much will you be spending? I don't know. It could be for a pair of shoes or an airplane ticket or a hotel if I get tired of bunking with 40 stinky people. OK, no problem, just call us at the toll free number and we'll work with you. I can't use the toll free number - I'll be in Spain and I don't know exactly how well the phone will work because I'll be walking in the fields, amongst the bleating sheep. Longer story - not as interesting. I did find out that my billing period will be OK. But since I can't over pay the final result - I'm scheduling the payments through my bank. They'll send anything I ask them to.

Also - tis the season for auto and life insurance renewals. I call them trying to get the amount that I owe and make arrangements to pay them. Again, everyone is really nice. Oh I don't think there will be a problem. I'd feel better if I took care of it before I left. Don't worry about it - we'll send you a statement closer to the date. But if you send me a statement I'm not going to be there to pay it. Can you give me the amounts for this coming year and I'll just send it in? Well no, I don't have those yet, they haven't been generated. Can you generate them? No, I can't, but we'll send you a statement. But I won't be there to get it. Oh you'll be OK - we give you a window, after any stated dates, before we take any action. OK - so when I come home I'll be able to use my car without getting ticketed AND if I die on this trip - my kids won't get cheated - right? Oh absolutely! Have a good time!

Check back in October and see if I've started walking to work, have nothing for my children to remember be by, and if my credit scores have taken a nose dive. :o)

Friday, August 17, 2007

Happy Happy Joy Joy!

What a joyful day! (Until I tried packing my pack for my trip - WAY over weight).


I got so much done at work today! I actually made headway. Everyone was in such a light mood. There was laughter to be heard all over the building. Everyone was talking about how happy everyone was. There were groups of people everywhere chatting. There were some heavy conversations that took place, but everyone was like "yeah OK - that makes sense" and off we went - another thing to cross off the lists. A tensionless day.

At one point went into my manager's office to update him on a project. He had some serene music playing. I told him I liked it but if it were playing in my office, he'd be seeing the Z's floating out the door. "Behave!" he said. The perfect set up for me...I had my shirt on that said "Well Behaved Women Rarely Make History!!!" With that he told me to "get outta here". Again - what fun we had today!

Hahahaha - I just saw the Viva Viagra commercial. What a happy bunch of men :)And behind every viagra-happy man there's a viagra happy woman.

I caught sight of myself in the mirror today - glowing with happiness. The tenseness and sadness is gone. The calm and joy is back and I like it - I look younger again. I'm thankful.....and happy!

Be A Better Co-Worker

I found this posted in our kitchen/break room area at the office this morning and searched it out on the Internet. It is "spot on" as our CFO would say.

Taking a moment to think about how we may be viewed by co-workers is an important exercise that could have far-reaching effects. While you may not care what Bob down in accounting or Mary the administrative assistant thinks of you, it's important to remember that Mary may go on to become the administrative assistant to the potential new boss you have an interview with. And one day Bob just may be in charge of auditing your expense receipts at a future company.

"The single most important thing to remember is to be considerate," says John Challenger, chief executive officer of global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

If you truly think about how your behavior may impact others, you will understand how to behave courteously, improving your rapport with co-workers. Here are 10 more tips to help you be a better co-worker:

1. Dial it down a notch. Whether it's talking on your phone, singing to your iPod, or slamming file drawers with a deafening bang, reduce the volume of noises emanating from your office or cube, Challenger warns.

2. Keep your ego in check. Watch your bragging. It's great that you recently aced the deal with a difficult client or made an unbelievable golf shot yesterday. Most of your co-workers don't want to be subjected to hearing the endless reasons why you are so great. Wait to earn a compliment rather than trying to force people to deliver one.

3. Avoid office politics (Part 1). When the resident gossip "confides" insider information to you and is waiting to hear your reaction and rebuttal, don't bite, even if it's about someone you dislike. Scandalous scuttlebutt flourishes on the office grapevine and you don't want your remarks to come back to haunt you.

4. Clean up after yourself. This old standby of mom's is spot-on. Make sure you clear the break table after eating and don't leave food rotting in the fridge.

5. Silence it. Silly noises usually elicit more grimaces than giggles. Avoid annoying phone ring tones or computer sound effects. While you may enjoy hearing "It's a Small World After All" over and over every time your BlackBerry rings, you can bet you're alone in your amusement.

6. Cut cube clutter. Make sure your thriving collection of ferns doesn't cascade over into adjoining cubes or the many pictures plastered around your area don't stick up over cube dividers. While these items may make your cube 'homey,' the view from the other side is far less pleasing.

7. Avoid office politics (Part 2). Today's politically polarized environment makes discussing even the most innocuous issue a potential touchstone for office controversy. So keep your ideas for obtaining world peace or solving economic dilemmas under your hat.

8. Temper your toxicity. Try to not let your moments of personal or professional unhappiness blanket the office. Co-workers will cringe at your ability to put a negative spin on everything.

9. Good hygiene never fails. Oftentimes, you're with colleagues more often than you are with your family at home. That doesn't mean you should become complacent in your grooming. Your co-workers will always appreciate your use of shampoo, toothpaste and soap -- and several squirts of cologne do not take their place.

10. Keep the small talk small. While it's important to bond with fellow co-workers, everyone is there to work. By all means share a quick little story that will brighten their day. But don't plop down in a chair and kill a good hour with idle chatter.

"The best environments to work in are those where people really get along and have built friendships in the workplace," Challenger says. "However, if there ever is an issue between co-workers it's very important to recognize it and repair it," he advises. It is in both your best interest and the best interest of the company to maintain a cooperative, friendly work environment.

Kate Lorenz is the article and advice editor for She researches and writes about job search strategy, career management, hiring trends and workplace issues.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Caring People

Today has been a phenomenal day!

My day stared with an email from Mr. Special who, while dealing with family illness and job trauma, took time to send me an email, as promised, thanking me for my email, minimally stressing his dealings (TIDE PEN), sent prayers to my friend who is hospitalized, reminding me to keep walking. HOW SWEET IS THAT?

I got an email from a perfect stranger who had read my Camino posting and had thoroughly checked out my blogs (plural)and taken the time to write (twice). He'd noted a point when he remembered counting tearless days as a milestone in his life. What he made me realize is that I can't, now, remember the last time I cried - YEA!!! (Except the joy tears for my tiny footprint pins).

I had posted about where my camino started and had half a dozen posts in response (see Spain blog).

Had my friend who is in the hospital AND her husband. both, despite their time of need, ask ME how I was doing.

I had a wonderful birthday lunch party for a friend of mine.

I have the most wonderful caring people surrounding me. Some have been around awhile (25 years), some are more recent (20 years) and some are new (today). It is amazing how wonderful and caring they are. How lucky I am to have such wonderful people in my life. I never take any of you for granted. THANK YOU!!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


I had a pointed comment I was going to post tonight and just before I hit "Publish Post" - I erased it. I realized the fact that while I thought of saying it I realized more than even if I posted it I would get no return, that I didn't care enough any more to even bother trying to get my point across. That in itself is saying a lot. Usually I'll try until the cows come home. Hmmm, maybe that explains that strange smell. Moooove over Rover - here comes my life!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Prayers Please

Jules, Brian and baby Merlot need your prayers. It isn't time for Baby Merlot to be born yet and Jules has some complications. Please pray for them.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Beautiful Sunday

I slept late this morning.

Once I got up and out of the hotel, I found a beautiful park and walked around the lake there. Later I found the BBQ I was looking for. (More sweet tea, banana pudding and hushpuppies.) Took lunch back to the park and ate in the gazebo in the middle of the lake. The BBQ was not the same as other places in the south, but equally as good. Bonus find today - a Sams club and in that fine building was Sonny's BBQ sauce. I bought two half gallons to take home.

I took a nice nap too. I must have been running on empty because the time difference isn't affecting me - I'm using both time zones to their full advantage. LOL.

I found a trail, but late in the day. Wished I'd found it yesterday for this morning. The hotel didn't tell me it was here :(

I was sitting in the hotel gazebo this evening - perfect temp and weather.

Traveling lets me see TV channels (and the time to do so) that I normally don't see. Gene Simmons has a reality show. He and his wife are good parents. This episode he's with his daughter in Paris because some guy in London wanted her to model. Was fun to see the Paris sites including the restaurant they were meeting it - Les Deux Magots. Funnier - they went in December as I last did - the Christmas tree is in the square at Notre Dame. Been there!

Such a nice day - about time to wrap it up :)Only one more Sunday in the States.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

My Slice Of Heaven

I love the South. I love the humidity. I've had my sweet tea and a baked sweet potato. Tomorrow I'll seek out the BBQ. I do love it here.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Squished Like A Bug

I got squished like a bug the other day. I have an opportunity to have it happen to me again. So my intelligent self says: "Teri, now why would you want to go doing that to yourself again?" My other self (which is often wrong) says: "No, it wouldn't happen AGAIN!?!". And then my intelligent self responds: "GIRLFRIEND! What you been smokin'?"

And so it goes.

My Joyce Friends

I have two stories to tell.

Joyce - I was trying to find a bar of shampoo to take on my trip. I thought Burts Bees made one (they do - ugh). I was shopping for it at the health food store. The clerk was trying to give me all kinds of ideas other than the bar of soap. (I have the alternative, I wanted to try this route.) I finally told her why I was looking for this specific type of item. She looked at me and asked me a direct question to which was the El Camino de Santiago. She told me she'd read about it and knew of it. Blah blah blah, etc., she's Catholic (longshot in Utah), blah, blah, blah, etc. She ended the conversation giving me a blessing. I treasure this.

Joyce - I've met up with this one twice when I've been out walking. The last conversation we had was about a book I was reading....while walking (yes, I had the iPod going too). We'd talked about the book and I'd promised to let her read it when I was done. That was a month or so ago. I did a later walk tonight and bumped into her again. We walked to my house and I got her the book. I asked if she'd like to sit and we started chatting. She's LDS, but her entire family is EVERYTHING else. She'd asked if I was Catholic - she saw the Crucifix in my living room. (Thanks D!). We talked about Faith. All of her relative's and our own. She shared with me an experience her brother had and one that she had at age 13 following the death of her father. Having been reared in an athiest family I'm amazed that she is so open to so many ways of believing.

Both experiences were amazing. I can't believe how people are feeling about what I'm taking on...they take it to their hearts. I'm so glad I'm doing this, for me, and for everyone that needs it.


One needs more in their toolbox than just a hammer and screwdriver. Dontcha think?

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

One of Those Days

Today was one of those days. A busy, busy day for work that started early, ended late, and had more work than day.

I learned something new today. Not exactly the type of learning I wanted to experience, but I learned it none the less. I found, at the end of the day, I was much wiser. It is not a lesson I will ignore.

The auther of the book that got me started on planning my trip wrote to me today. She is the second author that has written to me regarding the Camino.

I'm so looking forward to my trip. The thought of having the only goal for the day be putting on my shoes, walking a few miles, eating my dinner and repeating the same for 34 more days is beginning to sound more enticing than a week at a spa. Ahhh.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Friendship II

Today being Sushi Tuesday, found a bunch of us going out to lunch. The group had again morphed and included my daughter. Conversation inevitibly turned to my send off and return. Oh the return will be blogable - let me tell you.

To honor my dear (and slighty CRAZY) friends I found these quotes:

"The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when you discover that someone else believes in you and is willing to trust you with a friendship."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
"Words are the empty actions of the heart, but actions are the words of the heart."
Submitted by Mikel Tucker
"What is a friend? A single soul dwelling in two bodies."
"The best friend is the man who in wishing me well wishes it for my sake."
"The only way to have a friend is to be one."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
You all are my inspiration, my strength, my joy and my reward. Thank you all - so very, very much. And to those sitting near us...I'm so very very sorry if we disturbed you with our laughter and joy - NOT!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Perfect Weekend

Help a friend move bookcases, dine and chat a few hours. Have family come to visit. Go to an arts festival in the mountains. Have company, dine and chat. Sit on new patio chairs and converse. Hmmmm. Nirvana.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Shifting Gears

More driving...funny.

I down-shifted today. I only need one cell phone. I've been sharing a service with my daughter since she was in high school. She'd graduated and I have a cell phone for my job. Time to lighten up my purse and fatten up my pocket book. Service transferred - time to close out the phone.

I went through it - writing down numbers I need to move, looking at numbers I didn't know I still had and eeking out numbers that I wished had came up on my screen now and again. Oh well. I cleaned out messages. I had kept some very romantic ones from late last year. And some from earlier this year that broke my heart to read again. But like the need for this phone, time passes and life moves on. I looked through the pictures - time to erase my picture with Davey Jones (Monkees). Pictures of my grandson will have to move on too. He's much older now and I have many that I can carry in other ways.

I cancelled 75% of my cable today too. I don't watch but about an hour of it a month. True, I won't be able to do Law and Order marathons, but the reality is, I haven't for a year or so anyway. I'll spend the money on books - or rent a movie if I really want to sit for a spell.

In a few weeks I will begin a new era of me. I will be different. I hope as much lighter as I will be in bodyfat, I hope I will be I will be in heart and in want. Perhaps the exercises of today will be preparing me for the person who will emerge from this event.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Checking The Rear View Mirror

And for about a mile tonight I saw my new patio chairs in my rear view mirror. Amazing how a Miata can become a pickup truck with a couple of bungie cords! My daugther is visiting this weekend and we're going to use those chairs and have us a good chat. I haven't seen her since last year. Missing her big time.

While that paragraph worked with the title, it isn't what I'm really blogging about. Every now and then I think it is therapeutic to look over my shoulder and look where I've been.

July was a great month. It has been a hard year for me - so much sadness. But I'm happy to report life is back to normal and in one regard (bonus) my real normal. For this I rejoice.

And turning back around to look at the road ahead - my life looks fabulous! I want for nothing.

How High is High?

How do you know that you're cared for? Go to dinner with a couple of guys from work and watch them fuss and worry about you. These aren't dating guys - they're co-workers (one a long time friend) that have taken me under their wings and fuss about who I see and what new crazy adventure I'm planning to embark on. Both took me out to dinner last night as a trip celebration - I won't be in town the next time either of them will be.

After I went through the whole camino intinerary (I took my maps) - one began to worry about the mountains I would be crossing - there are 5 ranges I will cross. I thought one was perhaps 7000 feet (turned out to be 1540 meters or 5000 feet). He was worried because that was higher than where I lived.

Yes, but I reminded him that I'd done Timpanogos last year (with the other dinner guest) and that was 11,700 feet in altitude. But but but, he said, that wasn't for 18 miles in a day. Yes it was. :) At that Pat and I high-fived. It took us two years to conquer that damned peak.

After I got home I checked the highest point on the camino and the altitude is about 5000 ft. But...there is the fact that the "valleys" won't be 4000 feet as they are here - they'll be sea level. So...yeah there will be peaks and valleys - but when isn't there?

I love the fact that I have all these big brothers looking after me. Now if I could only get them to carry my pack for me for the 500 Camino miles :)

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Some Utah Alcohol Laws

Pat and Steve took me to dinner and then drink (not s) tonight to celebrate my upcoming trip. We got to discussing some of the interesting rules about drinking (or trying to drink) in Utah.

First we ate at a great BBQ place. I'm moving in. And then we went for a drink at another restaurant.

1) If you order a bottle of wine, the restaurant leaves the cork or top (screw top is OK now) because you can take an unfinished bottle home with you. Why...because it would be wrong to expect or force you to finish it before you drive home.

2) The bartender cannot serve you over the bar. Either the waitstaff must do it or the bartender must put the drink at the end of the counter, come out from behind the bar and then deliver it to you. If the drink had been mixed in the back room - he/she could have just placed it on the counter for you - but since he/she made it in front of you, it must be delivered.

3) 6% beer has to be purchased in the state run liquor stores. You can get served bottled 5% beer at the clubs that have memberships. On tap is 3% wherever you go.

4) Kegs are illegal in Utah.

5) Only 1 oz. of liquor is in mixed drinks.

6) Your glass has to be empty and removed before you can be served a subsequent drink.

7) In a restaurant that is allowed to serve alcohol you must order food. Chips will be served by demand. (Notice - I did not say "on demand").

There are more, but these ought to get your dinner discussion started.


Having essentially lived (long term project) in Minneapolis for nearly three years, having two major customer sites and a sister office in the area, the bridge collapse is of great concern to me.

So far, no one we know has been affected.

But whether or not I know anyone involved, my thoughts and prayers go out to all of the survivors and the friends and families of those who so very sadly, did not.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

25 Years

D sent me camino feet - spare pairs :) See the Camino blog!

But I'm here to talk about a connection that has, as he chose to commemorate with a silver St. James medal, has spanned nearly 25 years.

Through work, through marriages, through cities and countries, through trials and joys - he's always been there. He put me on my first grown up airplane flight (just a little sloshed), took me on my first trip abroad (and shown me the secret treasures of many many places. He's propped me up, cheered me on and stood at the finish line with a smile and applause a million jillion times.

No one is more creative or thoughtful or appreciated.