Sunday, April 23, 2006

Signs of Life

Hello my friends. I have finally returned to this, my little forum of self-expression. I have been absent for far longer than I ever imagined I would be. To those of you who have encouraged me over the past few months to write here again, I would just like to say a heartfelt thank you! I will explain my absence shortly, but first I would like to share with you some recent pictures and proof that Spring has indeed returned to Indiana. :)

First, I have for your viewing pleasure some daffodils that were in full bloom last week. I got a nice little digital camera a few months ago. It is a Canon PowerShot A510 with 3.2 megapixels, for those of you who might be curious. It is not a really high powered model, but it will be more than adequate to my needs, and besides, the price was really right! :)

Next, I have zoomed in on a portion of the previous picture. Just for fun, can you find these flowers in the bigger picture? Well, if you are good at picture puzzles, you should have no trouble. :)

Finally, I have a picture of a Robin's nest that I took a few days ago, with two beautiful blue eggs. I have been trying not to disturb the mother as much as possible. She flies away if I get closer than about 20 feet. However, yesterday I got a quick peek into the nest and now there is a third egg! More to come on this story. :) Some of you may remember my pictures from last year when a dove nested in the same place!

Ah, now on to the more serious business of where I have been. On December 16 of last year, my father's mother passed away suddenly. She had been in declining health for some years, but her passing was quite a shock for me. As I said in my post "Questions and Answers", from November of last year, visiting my Grandmother in Tucson, Arizona was high on my list of things I wanted to do! I had not seen her in about three years. She and I did talk occasionally on the phone, though. Three months before she died, she asked me to come and see her soon. I wanted to. I just wish there had been more time. She was my last surviving grandparent, and one of my most beloved relatives. I have been working on and off since February on a post to honor her memory and tell a bit about her life. It is still in the works and I will eventually publish it here. For a long time, I thought that I just had to finish it before I wrote anything else in my blog, but my heart just hasn't been fully into the project. I am still healing from her loss, but I am feeling better. I have many enjoyable memories of her and my grandfather. I promise that I will share some of them with you!

Finally, just a quick note about my new blog Apolitical Deconstruction. I have published a few of my letters to my U.S. Senators there and I will certainly write more in the future! I have some strong convictions, which I don't mind sharing with my elected representatives (and now with you as well, if you are interested). However, I view political opinions in much the same light as religious beliefs. It is ok if your opinions and beliefs are different from mine. As long as the conversation remains polite, you are free to agree or disagree. I am willing to accept you as you are if you will afford me the same courtesy. So, with that in mind, I look forward to interesting discourse with whomever wishes to visit and engage. So far, all my visitors have been quite amicable! :)

Bye for now, and thanks for your patience and support! I promise to return again soon.


Blogger Pinkfloydish said...

it is good to have you back :) sorry for your loss,but as you the best things we have when they are gone are the beautiful memories. i'm anxious to read about her, please do share your memories with us.
cheers :)

4/23/2006 4:44 AM  
Blogger Dr O2 said...

wow! couldn' quite believe my eyes to C the blog updated :-) popped in asap :-)

sorry for the loss David. I have a very close relationship with my grandparents and I know the loss will somewhat shock me even more than the loss of my parents!!!

Ah the nest is up agn! lol, guess you can raise the rent for next year ;-)

P.S: the magnified flowers are located in the middle of the pic ;-)

Welcome back Dave.

4/23/2006 6:35 AM  
Blogger Jamak said...

My condolences David. I know how much she meant to you.

4/23/2006 6:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good to have you back David! I was sure you will come back, but coming back with another blog is a strong one, almost upthere with Mick Jagger rejoining the Stones (sometimes back in the Neolothic times?)!

Nice pics. I life dafodils.

4/23/2006 11:39 PM  
Blogger David said...

Hi Pinkfloydish, It is always a pleasure to see you here. :) Thanks for your condolence and I very much appreciate your interest in reading more about my grandmother. I will also be including some details about my grandfather and my greatgrandparents, along with pictures. I think they were all interesting people, but I may have a slight bias there. :)

Hey there Omid! It sounds like my post made your day! :) Seriously, thanks for your sentiment. I am glad that you are very close to your grandparents. All of mine lived far away for most of my life, and I was lucky if I got to see them once a year. I loved all my grandparents, but I always felt closer to my father's parents. I wish that I had grown up near them! Anyway, I wish you many years of continued closeness and joy from your grandparents!
You are right about that nest site. It seems to be really prime real estate! Maybe the occupants should run in one of those hamster wheels and generate some electricity or something in exchange for the comfy accomodations! ;)

Jamak, thank you very much for your kind thought! She was indeed very special!

Thanks Khodadad! I didn't know Mick ever left the Stones. I guess my knowledge of historical musicology is sorely lacking! ;) Glad you liked the pics! I think there are still a few unphotographed Spring subjects out there. Maybe I will take a nice nature walk later today. :)

4/24/2006 3:53 PM  
Blogger jarvenpa said...

Yes, welcome back, David. I'm sorry about your grandmother. I have been reading the first letters my grandparents wrote to each other, back in 1922 (I didn't know these existed; my uncle sent them to my youngest brother; brother has been dutifully scanning them and sending them to me. It is like meeting them in a different way. They were much in love, always, though my grandmother lived another 20 years after her husband died).
Daffodils! Beautiful daffodils! And robin's eggs in a dogwood tree--these are so lovely, thank you.

4/25/2006 2:03 PM  
Blogger David said...

Thanks Jarvenpa! I have also read some old letters between my grandparents, and between my grandfather and his father, that date from the 1920's. It is amazing to have the perspective of close relatives that I always perceived as old from when they were young! Glad you liked the daffodils. :) Actually, the robin's next is not in a tree, but in a wreath of plastic dogwood flowers hanging on a wall. But, the robin seems quite content to have been fooled, as well. :)

4/26/2006 5:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope you'll accept condolences from a complete stranger, but based on some reading I've been doing on your very well-written blog, I think you will.
Nearly all your posts strike me as very intelligent, honest and open-minded. My compliments. (Most blogs seem to be that way! But then again, I'm very new to the blogging world.)
I do not fully agree with you on religious beliefs and political opinions: whereas the former have more to do with personal feelings of security and belonging, the latter must always be open to critical debate and are, ideally, less resistant to change. The more so because they are a means to an end.
By the way, the flowers are located just past the middle of the width, and about a quarter of the way down from the top.

An eighteen-year-old from Arnhem, The Netherlands (Simcha is a pseudonym, meaning 'joy' in Hebrew.)

4/27/2006 12:14 PM  
Blogger Dr.Human said...

Hi david,I liked your post,
first I would like to tell you that I have two camera the first one mercury for photos and the other is sony for vedios and I told my brother to buy a new one for vedios and photos in the same time it is (GENEX).it is a good one as my friend told me

I am sorry for your loss .I thank my God always because I sew all my grand parents except my mother's father ,he died before 3 monthes of my birth

any way .thanks for visiting my blog


4/28/2006 2:11 PM  
Blogger David said...

Hi Simcha, welcome to my blog. Thanks for your condolence and for your compliment to my writing. Not many new visitors would take the time to read more than the current post. I appreciate your effort and interest! I agree with what you said about religious beliefs and political opinions. I only meant to equate them in the sense that many people are very intolerant to others who do not share their belief system or who have different opinions and ideas. Based on what you have written, though, I think that you are probably much more open-minded in that regard.

You have very sharp eyes! Next time I may have to increase the difficulty of my zooming. :)

You are my first visitor from The Netherlands. The name Arnhem sounds familiar. Wasn't it the site of a famous WWII battle?

I do not know much Hebrew, but one of my cousins is reasonably fluent (my father's ancestors are Jewish). However, I recall a holiday from my early youth called Simchat Torah. :)

Thanks again for visiting, I hope you will drop by again. Let me know when you start your own blog! :)

4/28/2006 3:34 PM  
Blogger David said...

Hi Maas, I am glad that you liked my post. :) I am happy to hear that you have two cameras! So, won't you please post some pictures on your blog soon? ;)

Thank you for your caring thought about my grandmother. I hope that you will have many years of joy with your remaining grandparents and that you are able to visit them often!

4/28/2006 3:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, to be honest, I'm not that well-versed in Hebrew, let alone fluent, as I may have suggested. I am (at a very slow pace, I have many more things to do) working through a paperback pocket in the "Teach Yourself Books"-series called "Biblical Hebrew, The language of The Old Testament". I've gotten to the point where I can actually understand the phrase "Simchat Torah" ('rejoicing with the Law'): "simchat" is the so-called "construct" form of "simcha". The funny thing in Hebrew is that there is no ordinary genitive case. You don't say [the house](one word) + [of the man](one word), you say [the house of](one word) + [the man](one word). "rejoicing with" (simchat) + "the Law" (Torah).
My pseudonym Simcha was inspired by a very cute little character in the movie "Left Luggage" by Jeroen Krabbé.
Also, you're very right about Arnhem! What a pleasant surprise that you've heard of this town. It was almost completely destroyed in the appropriately named "Battle of Arnhem", after the failure of "Operation Market Garden".
Before starting my own blog, I want to gain some more experience in commenting first...

4/29/2006 5:21 AM  
Blogger David said...

You seem to have an interest in learning languages. I have enough trouble with plain old English. :) However, I have picked up a few words of Japanese, Korean, and Persian over the years from some of my friends. You might like to visit my friend Khodadad's blog. He is an Iranian Ph.D. student studying in California. He likes to study ancient dead languages, among other things. There is a link to his blog in my list of Friends. Also, I was talking to my friend Melantrys today. She lives in Germany, but occasionally travels to The Netherlands and has some friends there. I mentioned you to her and that you live in Arnhem. She said that she has a friend named Maarten that lives in Arnhem. I don't know if he has a blog (I should have asked her). But, you might like her blog too.
I understand your desire to get some experience with commenting first before starting your own blog. I did the same thing. I commented for a year before starting my own blog. I hope you don't wait that long. :)

4/30/2006 3:14 AM  
Blogger Dr O2 said...

we live a block away but still don' get to C each other much. Work load kills relationships :-S

4/30/2006 4:57 AM  
Blogger Melantrys said...

A blog?! Maarten? For laughing out loud!
He's the one too busy to check my blog or answer any messages now that he has his girlfriend. Maybe Simcha would like to pick up the towels and shirt I forgot there on New Year's and give them to me ;) , as I am royally pissed and seriously don't feel the urge any more to visit Arnhem for his sake.

Hm, strange, I started blogging and commenting at the same time.

David said (...) I have enough trouble with plain old English.

Lol, if you say so.

4/30/2006 10:05 AM  
Blogger David said...

Omid, why don't you make time for dinner with them once a week? I'm sure they would enjoy your company!

Ok Mel, bad suggestion on my part! Sounds like Maarten is a bit preoccupied! ;)

5/01/2006 3:00 AM  
Blogger Dr O2 said...

well we do get to C each other 2-3 times a week but it used to be everyday ;-)

Bingala is my other blog. Didn want to let it out but it get's confusing with IDs ;-) lol

tnx for the notice mate....

5/05/2006 2:21 AM  
Blogger David said...

Two or three times a week?! What a lucky man you are! Treasure your time with them. :)

Hey, stop confusing me! ;)

5/07/2006 3:17 PM  
Blogger Dr O2 said...

yeah :-) I am truely lucky in that sense!

Well U know as hard as I try sometimes my PC can't take it as I comment on both English & Farsi blogs & change IDs consequently ;-)

5/09/2006 12:29 AM  
Blogger Lavinia said...

David, welcome back and big hugs.

Thank you for the beautiful pictures and for sharing so much of your life with us in this post.

I am very sorry for your loss, but I know that all your good memories of your grandmother and all her good qualities will live on you. It is always like that with beloved people who pass away.

5/10/2006 4:17 AM  
Blogger David said...

Thanks Lavinia! :) The kindness of your comment is much appreciated!

5/11/2006 1:13 AM  

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