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Returning to Normal?

What is normal for us anyway? With so many recent changes in our lives, it is hard to say, but for now, not having a cough would be a good start. A horrible cough has lingered, although I am up and about in spite of some difficult nights sleeping. Isn't that the way, you are fine and dandy while upright, but oh, once you lay down, the coughing begins! The power of gravity, or so I assume, helps keep it at bay while standing or sitting. I'm trying not to listen to folks who've told me that the cough stays with you for weeks!

At least it did not keep Bruce up at night as he did not come home until Friday afternoon, having left on Sunday afternoon. Oh wait--he was up all night watching his workers complete their tasks. The good news there is that they are pretty much done with the Miami remodel, leaving only the job in Calgary to be completed. Preparing meals for one can be difficult as I'm sure many of you well know. One night, struggling to put a meal together, I had to resort to roasting some carrots for dinner as there was not a thing resembling a vegetable to be found in our home. I do not recommend trying the same, unless desperate of course, as these were awful.
That said, I still can't fully taste food. I was thinking, having experienced the no-taste thing for much of the week, how awful it would be to lose one's sense of taste. Aren't senses one of those things we take for granted until they are taken away? Then again it is easy to take our good health for granted too, isn't it?

Meanwhile, while I am all whiny about not feeling my best, our Florida neighbors in the Panhandle will not be returning to normal anytime soon following the destructive path of Hurricane Michael. Oh my gosh, what devastation. Periodically throughout the day that it came ashore, I would turn on the weather channel for updates. While I'm not sure what I was expecting, it seemed to me as if the coverage almost bordered on tabloidish, if I may be so bold as to use what is perhaps a made up word. Apparently there is a market for that kind of reporting, but I'm not it. There really are no words to describe how awful it must be in so many ways. The relentless heat we are still experiencing must be excruciating with no air conditioning. Then too, where do you begin the cleanup? An interesting story, from the NYT, of one one house that remained standing amongst the ruins.

One morning I drove over to Lake Eola Park for a walk around the lake, something that I'd yet to do since we've been home. After parking the car on Washington Street, I began my walk near the playgrounds, and more importantly the bathroom that I used to frequent every Sunday. These signs must have been around then, but I can't recall seeing them before. Not surprising with my memory! I thought they might interest some readers.
Maybe the print is too small for reading? Narrative continued here:
One bird that is oh so plentiful at Lake Eola are Mute Swans.
At one time we had some Tuxedo Swans, which I thought I was seeing from afar. Upon closer inspection, I'm not quite sure what this one would be called. Did it mate with a Muscovy Duck? Weird, isn't it?
The park was filled with pink flamingoes as this is Pink October. While I have great sympathy for those affected by breast cancer, isn't it time this campaign went away quietly? Is there anyone who is not aware that breast cancer exists? After all, there are far more deadly cancers that receive little, or no attention. I'm thinking pancreatic, or ovarian cancer, to name just two.
I continued my walk until I came to the spot that we called home for more Sundays than I can count. How we did the market, week after week, is beyond me.
Yesterday afternoon, following church, we strolled for a little bit through the Autumn Winter Park Art Festival, of course recalling the time when we were set up during a deluge, one time we had a terrific show, and one time I'd completely forgotten about.  At this show we saw some very fun,
and imaginative art.
That said, it was so blazing hot, not to mention we are not currently in the market for art, we cut our visit short, heading instead over to Luma for lunch and air conditioning. This starter, of roasted brussel sprouts on a sauce colored with beet juice was tasty, albeit stupid expensive ($15). Plus, that pink is a little weird looking, right? Pepto Bismol anyone?
 Driving home down Fern Creek we came across what is a new park to me,
apparently begun following the Pulse tragedy? Or so it would appear.
On the home front the Golden Rain tree along the lakefront has gone from shocking yellow, to bright coral.
As you see from the above, the Lake Pineloch shoreline has a white sandy beach, whereas our little lake is not nearly as tidy. But, we do have a plethora of wildlife, for which I'm most grateful. The other morning a Limpkin and Ibis were foraging,
while this big fat turtle was resting, presumably having swum across the lake, or so I imagine as I see them most mornings. Well, I just see the tip of their nose, but you get my drift.
Most evenings people gather at the big pool and on this Friday night, there was a good crowd, mostly women, which Bruce doesn't mind in the least. He's talking with Patsy Barr, the mother of one of my childhood friends. In fact, it was her daughter that took me to her church youth group where I got to know Bruce.     
 Have you noticed how the days are getting shorter?
Lots of things happening in our part of Orlando---new buildings going up, and old ones slated for change, including the Fort Gatlin shopping center at the corner of Orange and Gatlin. Seeing this happening Saturday afternoon was shocking in many ways, one of which I was startled to learn that there had once been a library branch there. Who knew?
And in other news, I saw a Black-Capped Chickadee on our feeder this morning. Returning to normal, maybe so, at least when it comes to feeding birds. :)

your friend,


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