Finding peace in my garden

June 2, 2017

Recently, I jumped into my car and drove to Home Depot to look at their new plants.  It’s the best thing about my life that I can do something like this at any time of the year.  It’s perpetual summer here in Hawaii, and plants don’t usually die during the winter as is the case on the mainland.

I found this plant, which is a native of Thailand.  Sorry, I don’t recall its scientific name, and the tag did not give its common name.  But, what makes this plant so unusual is that the top colorful leaves eventually turn dark green.  I bought four pots:

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I rearranged the existing plants in my patio by placing all of the hibiscus together on one side and by alternating the different types of ti plants on the other side.  Those are Boston ferns hanging above the ti plants:

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I love what my Vietnamese neighbors are planting in their side yard.  Eventually, there will be a grove of beautiful green trees to mask their house:

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I just love my plants!  How I wish my father were alive to enjoy these plants with me.  I am so like my dad.  I, too, find great peace by sitting in my patio and appreciating my container garden, looking at the bright blue sky, and absorbing Vitamin D from the sun.  Life can’t get any better than this:

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It’s good to have a Plan B

May 31, 2017

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I would miss Honolulu, Hawaii, if I had to move.  That white structure in the background is our state capitol.

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I wish the U.S. Navy would hurry up and encapsulate with concrete the gigantic fuel tanks sitting 100 feet above our water aquifer near our house.  One tank has already leaked 27 thousand gallons of jet fuel into the water, though so far it hasn’t affected our water quality yet.  Can you imagine bathing in jet fuel?  How would you wash your hair and body with contaminated water?  Much less drink it?

What is the Navy waiting for?  Encapsulate those fuel tanks with concrete.  NOW!  Those tanks were installed during World War II, so they have become rusty and corroded.  With every passing year, they become more rusty and more corroded.  Sooner or later, more tanks will leak, and then, what will happen to our drinking water?  Aaaargh.

If that happens, we will have to abandon our house and move elsewhere.  What is our Plan B?  I had thought of moving to another island, such as Kauai, or to another state, such as New York.  But, at my age, I will probably live near my daughter, Maria, so that she can help me.  And,  of course, I would have to consider where David would want to live, too.

My Plan B would also apply to other disasters, such as earthquakes, hurricanes, sink holes, etc.

It’s good to have a Plan B.  Don’t think for a second that bad things won’t happen to you.  If they don’t, fine.  But, if they do, what will you do?

David’s sports world

May 29, 2017

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This is a photo of a surfer, shown on TV years ago.

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Through osmosis, I have gained quite a bit of knowledge about sports.  How can it be otherwise, when I am married to David, a man who watches sports on TV daily and enjoys talking about athletes, coaches, and their money?

For instance, David informed me that Michael Jordon is the richest NBA player in the world, with assets amounting to $1 billion even after giving a big pile of dough to his ex-wife in a divorce settlement.

David also told me that NBA coach Steve Kerr regrets having back surgery, because it has led to nausea and extreme pain.  He has had three surgeries so far, but is still sick, unable to coach the Golden State Warriors.

On the other hand, golfer Tiger Woods has had four back surgeries and now claims to have instant relief from pain after his fourth.  However, he is not allowed to twist or turn until his back has healed.  The verdict is still out on that one.

David is so into sports, and he drags me into the sports world simply because of his passion for the game.  He is seriously considering attending the Clippers exhibition game when this NBA team comes to Hawaii in the fall.  He will have to go alone, because I dislike sitting for hours.  Years ago, he took me to a Lakers exhibition game, and it was sheer torture for me.  Boring and tedious!

However, I do like to read the sports section of the newspaper every morning, just to know the outcome of any particular game.  To me, knowing the final score is important, not watching the game, itself.

This year, I predict that the Golden State Warriors will beat the Cleveland Cavaliers and win the NBA Championship.

Keep your life simple

May 27, 2017

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This is a photo of my kids, Lisa and Maria, when they were very young.  Now, Lisa is 35 and Maria is 38.

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President Trump has problems that I don’t have.  He should have remained a businessman in New York, because that is what he does best – making lots of money.  We can be happy that because of his recent trip to Saudi Arabia, there will be $300 billion flowing into the USA.  No small feat.  However, as a politician, he is not doing well.  He’s in trouble with the FBI and Congress.  What an ordeal.  All we can do is wait and see what happens next.

Personally, I am okay with my life, my finances, and my marriage.  I am the eldest of five siblings, and I am the only one in our family who has a house and a husband.  Everyone else is either divorced, widowed, or dead, and they own a condominium, not a house.

If we don’t travel, we will have enough money to live on for quite some time without having to rent out our guest room or having to go back to work.  I’ll never say never, but I doubt that we will ever travel again.  We won’t be missing much, considering the turmoil in the world these days.  At any rate, we have already been to Asia, Europe, Canada, and the mainland.  It’s good enough.  I don’t have any pressing need to travel anywhere else.

Hence, we have a nice life here in Hawaii.  Who cares about being rich and powerful?  Keep your life simple, and you will reap the benefits.

Two CDs of the same piece

May 25, 2017

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On May 14, David and I attended a Hawaii Symphony Orchestra concert at the Blaisdell Concert Hall.  The first half featured a short piece by Vaughn Williams and then a violin concerto by Respighi, performed by a violin soloist from Japan.  Both pieces were not memorable enough for us to buy CDs.

After the intermission, we were treated to a wonderful piece, “Romeo and Juliet” by Prokofiev.  We had watched the San Francisco Ballet perform this dance decades ago in Honolulu.  Back then, the orchestra played in the orchestra pit below the stage, and because of the small size of the pit, the orchestra was very small and limited in scope.

However, when we heard “Romeo and Juliet” performed on May 14, there were no ballet dancers, and the orchestra was huge, occupying the full stage.  How glorious it was!  Though parts of the piece were cacophonous, it ended with a whisper.  Tears flowed down my face, because it was so incredibly beautiful and exquisite.

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I told David that we must order a recording of it.  He checked our CD cabinet and said we did not have the CD, so he ordered it from Amazon.  Well, just yesterday, I was checking all of the CDs under “P” and found Prokofiev’s “Romeo and Juliet” filed among the Pavarotti CDs.  When I showed it to David, he was upset, because we would now have two recordings of the same piece.  However, it’s okay with me, because the two recordings have different orchestras and different conductors.  We will listen to both CDs and determine which is better in terms of clarity and interpretation.

I am so glad that I married David, because we both love classical music and were classical musicians at one time, studying classical music in college.  Common interests and values seal our marriage, and this is why we are still married after all these years.

More colorful muumuus

May 23, 2017

Last Sunday, I drove to T&L Muumuu Factory to have a zipper replaced on my muumuu.  It cost me $10.00 to have it done.  While there, I decided to buy three new muumuus, ranging in price from $60.00 to $70.00.

I like these muumuus, because they have no zipper ($60.00):

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This muumuu does have a zipper, but I bought it anyway because of the black and white design and pretty neckline ($70.00):

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I hope T&L Muumuu Factory doesn’t go out of business, because I really like their location and the kinds of Hawaiian apparel they sell.

Nice reward for a good colonoscopy

May 21, 2017

As you know, David underwent a routine colonoscopy last Tuesday at Straub Medical Center.  It was uneventful.  He has no polyps and no inflammation.  But, he does have diverticulosis and small hemorrhoids.  No treatment is necessary.  Next colonoscopy will be scheduled in 10 years.

So, with that, I drove David to the Mexico Cantina at Ward Center for a Mexican lunch.  Surprisingly, he was not groggy, but alert enough to walk to and from the car.  On the other hand, he miscalculated the bill after our meal.  He did not add it up correctly.  When I pointed out his error, he stared at the number for quite some time until he realized his mistake.  Quite embarrassing since he was an accountant before retirement.  Well, what do you expect?  He was recovering from anesthesia and a colonoscopy.

Here are photos of our Mexican lunch in Ward Center:

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Views of Ala Moana Park:

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View of the restaurant:

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David ordered the CRAB enchiladas, Spanish rice, black beans, and salsa:

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I ordered the CRAB quesadilla, Spanish rice, black beans, and salsa:

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This is David:

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This is me:

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The crab dishes were quite reasonable:  $22.50 for the enchiladas and $20.95 for the quesadilla.

Nice reward for a good colonoscopy!

Lunch with friends

May 19, 2017

I have known Lynette since first grade at Manoa Elementary School, and we played together as neighbors.  She now lives with her husband and family in California.  A week ago, she telephoned me and said she and her husband would be in Hawaii for a couple of weeks and that she would like to get together for lunch.

Yesterday, we dined at the Museum Café in Honolulu with other Roosevelt High School classmates.  We are all college graduates, and one of us is a retired Circuit Court Judge.  So, we all have done quite well in life.

As women who are 70 – 71 years of age, we do have a lot to be grateful for — above all, managing to survive this long.  May we all continue to age well and have some fun, too.

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I don’t want to identify anyone, so I will let you guess who is who.

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Let the good times roll!

Aiming for better health

May 17, 2017

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This is a photo of me on my boyfriend’s 27 foot sailboat, when we sailed between the Hawaiian islands in 1975.  Look how skinny I was back then at age 29.  I have gained a tremendous amount of weight since then, and it shows.  Arrrrgh!

***

Today, David will undergo a routine colonoscopy at Straub Medical Center.  I will drop him off, return home, then pick him up after listening to the gastroenterologist speak about the results of the procedure.  We will then have our lunch at the Mexico Cantina in Ward Center.

Which reminds me that I should schedule appointments for a mammogram and a colonoscopy, myself.

My father died at age 87 of colon cancer, and my mother died at age 99 of dementia.  If you live long enough, you are bound to die of something.

Both David and I have to take medications for our chronic ailments.  It’s too bad that we are not in better health.  But, David says that by quitting his stressful job as an accountant, he added 20 years to his life.  Stress, as we all know, can be lethal.

I think I should exercise more and eat more vegetables on a daily basis.  Above all, I should strive for peace of mind and focus on the simple pleasures of life.

Too bad we don’t own a sailboat.  On the other hand, I tend to get seasick.

Michael’s graduation party

May 15, 2017

For the past few days, I was unable to post anything new on my blog because of malware on Microsoft Windows.  Now, the malware has been removed, and I can post.  Halleluia.

Last Saturday, my cousin’s younger son, Michael, graduated from the University of Hawaii with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics.  He will return to UH in the Fall for his Master’s in Economics.  What a smart kid!

Michael’s parents, Stewart and Vivien, hosted a graduation party for 61 people at Happy Days Chinese Restaurant in Kaimuki.

Me, Michael, and David:

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Michael and Stewart:

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Kanani, Toni, and Charles:

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David, me, Rylan, Julia, Grant, and Maria:

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It was so nice to see Michael and our cousins again!  Good luck and best wishes to Michael!