A new life at 67.Can a woman start all over again?

Posts tagged ‘Women’

A Touch of the Tropics

There is no escape.

Everyone travelling or staying in the tropics gets hit by it sooner or later.

The situation where your poor western stomach says,enough is enough of this eastern food.

You don’t really know whether it was the deep fried cockroaches you had for dinner the night before,or the cheddar cheese sandwich with Branston pickle which is also available here.But whatever it was you had better make sure a bathroom or bowl is in easy reach. Having established that they are near, you can lie back and wish to die.

You don’t of course, but it certainly feels like it,and in fact you will probably hope for  your passing at the acute stage.

Luckily it is usually something that takes at the most 48 hours to get over.Afterwards you will sleep and sleep,then greet the next day, a couple of pounds lighter and with a stomach that is now immune to the ‘joys’,of in my case,Asian cuisine.

A thought that went through my head while I was suffering was,

“now you are alone”

there is no family to accompany you on whatever journey this was going to take you,nobody to hold your hand,or make sure you got some fluids into you.It is all up to you.

But I managed it,and survived.

Although being alone when you are in need of care might be something that stops women doing what I did, this incident showed me we are all strong.It’s just fear that is the inhibitor.

Should I do Bali?

Here comes the difficult part of being alone again.
Diminished funds.
Forty years of not having to consider very much whether I could afford it or not gets to be a habit.
Of course if I had considered it then,I might not have had to consider it so much today, but that is beside the point now.

A friend of mine asked yesterday, if I would like to join her when she went to Bali in January,her husband would be away and she would enjoy the company.

A lovely idea I thought.It would also combine with my having to make a “visa run” (one of the rusty bits where staying in Thailand for more than a few months is concerned)

But now I can’t just say,yes,which I would have done before.
I now have to consider many things,the main one being,can I really afford this,even if I get the cheapest available flight,and basically I am a 5* girl.
Is Bali really worth it.

I suppose I could fast for a few weeks.
Cut out the gin and tonics,which of course I only take for their medicinal benefits in the tropics.
Not send Christmas cards,which I won’t get back anyway out here.
Not start my art classes again,which are an added luxury and I don’t practice enough.
Forget the hair dressers, even though it does only cost 100 Baht.

Yes,I will really have to think about it.

Yesterdays Roses

Yesterday was my 40th wedding anniversary.No that is not completely true.It would have been, but then I was divorced on September the 7th,so I suppose I will have to start again from that date.Yes,I think I will do that because I like celebrating things. What do you think?

Of course there will be no red roses anymore,I never really liked them anyway,so grand,so overpowering.So shall I buy a rose for myself, one  -seeing as I will be paying – of those lovely round pink ones with the tinged green edges. Fragonard would be an appropriate name for them I think.

Yes,I am sad,memories don’t die so easily,but I have many things that make me happy and they are what count now.

Full Moon Festival

One of the most beautiful festivals celebrated in Thailand is that of Loy Krathong.

It falls on the November full moon night.

Loy means float and Krathong leaf bowl or wreath.

All over Thailand people make these wonderfully decorated floats out of folded banana leaves and artistically arranged jasmine,orchids and chrysanthemum flowers. Candles and sticks of incense are placed in them as well as a few coins as offering to Buddha and they are then lit and placed in the canals and waterways where they float away,perhaps bringing the wished for happiness and appeasement to their makers.

My Thai friend invited me to the festival.She had been helping the children in her daughters school, to make their Krathongs and I had watched and even tried the complicated folding of the leaves myself. Obviously it would have been insulting to refuse her,even when she told me that the three of us would go of course in the national costume. Have you ever seen the national costume!?

I was taken along to a shop where the beautiful heavy silk dresses and ornamental jewelry and tiaras could be hired.They are very expensive so few people have their own. The chosen dresses were then fitted,the bodice so tight we could hardly breath,and the long narrow skirt definately not designed to walk quickly in. We were to return on the afternoon of the festival to be made up,and our dressed in the traditional styling.

It took three and a half hours for them to turn us, into unbelievable looking china dolls,with a flawless make up,not only on our faces but on our arms and shoulders as well. We hardly recognised ourselves afterwards. Our hair was sprayed until it was so stiff that the sea breezes couldn’t harm it, put up and crowned with a gold Tiara and Orchids. Gold Jewelry was fitted around our waists, arms, neck and ears.

At last we were ready. My friend in a dress of burgundy and gold,mine the colour of the moon with gold,and her seven year old daughter in a lovely peach.

I soon got used to the nudges and stares, smiles and thumbs up. We were the absolute center of attraction.Everyone wanted to take my photo and the flashing cameras of the hundreds of Thai who weren’t in a costume made me feel like a Hollywood star on Oscar night. It certainly isn’t usual for them to see a blond “Farang” in the costume of old Siam.

Carrying our Krathongs we finally arrived at the canal and lowered them into the water.Slowly they floated away,the candles flickering in the moonlight.Our wishes going with them.

Will they come true? I hope so.

Heavy Metal

Nice to be able to enjoy a couple of days of complete freedom.

Hubby went down to the Italian part of Switzerland,and I was going to stay at home,feed the cat ,and do exactly what I liked.

Bliss I thought.

A call of help from a friend changed everything yesterday.

Being a person who finds it difficult to say no, I jumped into the car and drove the few miles over to her place.

I suppose what we had talked about was still in my mind as I got back and I drove automatically and without really looking, into the garage.

Usually my car is able to drive itself home. We have a wonderful relationship, and the flitzy Italian has saved me from quite a few unforeseen situations.

But not yesterday.

Do you know what the worst sound in the world is to a car driver ?

The sound of metal fighting metal.

And that was the sound I heard yesterday as the Italian cut the corner and caught itself up on the framework of the garage door, and stayed there.

Driving forward brought the spine chilling noise to my ears,and reversing wasn’t any better.

No Hubby, neighbours on holiday,what was a woman supposed to do at a moment like this ? I suppose I could have called the fire brigade,they have often been called for less.

But I didn’t. I put my foot slowly on the accelerator and to the sound of music eased the car forward.

Two black doors,now have large white etchings on them,and a bit of the wheel guard seems to be missing.

Hubby doesn’t know yet.

Euro 2008:A Woman’s View

I don’t really want to to be a prophet on the outcome of the Euro 2008.

Now that Switzerland has gone,at least with her head held high after the 2:0 win over Portugal yesterday (I won’t shout of course about the missing 8 best players in the Portugese team) I don’t really care who wins.

That isn’t perfectly true,there are a few countries left that I definately don’t want to win.

To save any of your feelings I won’t mention them here.

I am a bit fickle,so Croatia isn’t my favourite anymore,and I am in the process of looking out an old Orange shirt from the back of the cupboard.

For me it’s got to be Holland. They still play Football like I remember it,and I remember the World Cup Final England vs. Germany in 1965,and I hope the Oranje are unbeatable.

I will of course watch the match tonight,when our neighbours and co-hosts of the 2008, Austria play Germany.

We will take everything back about what we say about them in Winter,and they will be our friends for ever if they can send Deutschland home.

The Most Expensive Woman in the World

Sue Tilley is the name of the lady,and she has just been sold for 33 Million Dollars.
Lucian Freud painted her in eight hourly sessions , three times a week over nine monthes.
He called his painting “Benefits Supervisor Sleeping”

She earned about 40 Dollars a time,and is now famous.

Lucian Freud is one of the most outstanding and brilliant portrait painters of our time and “Supervisor” is the most expensive painting ever sold by a living artist.

But he is not for everybody,

as the controversy over his 2001 portrait of Queen Elisabeth II proved. A lot of people thought she should have locked him up in the Tower of London for it.

“I am only interested in painting the actual person; in doing a painting of them,not only using them to some ulterior end of art” says the 85 year old.

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