The only plant really adapted to this summer in my yard which seems to thrive is the butterfly bush; I almost killed this one by mulching it! Besides the obvious charm of this bush, it has the benefit of not being on a deer's list of muchables. And it attracts butterflies. And it's odor is delightful. I want more as I move into zero scape and old age which necessarily twin. Low maintenance is a plus. Despite my use of a rotten egg, hot pepper and garlic infused water concoction sprayed liberally on plants favored by deer, I have pathetic roses and strangely pruned lilacs. I realize there is a draw back to the butterfly bush, which is its ungainly growth. I don't care, I like blooms in late summer.
In the garden this evening: two tomatoes, low hanging, with bottoms gnawed and telltale signs of tomato worm - but couldn't find the worm or the turtle. Lovely swim at 5:30; after a warm noon protest outside the office of Representative Morgan Griffith. Felt good showing up with many people I knew to urge Morgan to vote to raise the debt ceiling, bring in revenue by raising taxes on rich or/& closing loop holes in the tax code and leaving Medicare and Social Security from drastic hacking. We may not make an impression in Morgan's dim brain, but who knows - worth the effort. Mr. Lee and I are bushed.
Surprise visitor today who is an herbalist, lives across the river in Indian Valley, came looking for Jewel weed and Plantain. I took her for a leisurely stroll down creek to the river collecting the two plants. She is fascinating, having grown up in Dominican Republic (speaks French and Spanish fluently) and having studied herbs (prompted by her experience being healed by her grandmother's herbal tea as a child). She has met my friend Alma and we are hoping to get together for dinner soon with her partner also. And most exciting is the RAIN on this muggy day, keeping the temperature in the 80's, prompting me to do some qigong in thanks under the wet sky. Oh so luscious Cherokee Purple tomato, large as my fist, larger than my fist - for lunch. ah. Such delicious-ness sets me in speechless heaven - nothing to do by lollygag in the taste, in the communion of garden.
The last two snakes have been considerably smaller in girth; this one coiled as if to sleep in the laying box with egg in mouth! I do wish I could persuade one to stay in the studio environs instead of raiding coop. Got my stitches out today and sallied into the river in celebration around 5:30 when the sun had left the swimming hole! Wonderful feeling after almost two weeks just getting my feet and legs wet. I now feel like a captive in my scarf clad window cave from noon until 5; but with the heat I am adapting to afternoon reading. Today I even hung new kitchen lights which I found at Home Depot; they work on the track system already installed but much brighter - mini indoor flood. Perhaps I will transform into an improved house cleaner, more likely I will get back to water colors.
Cool, almost chilly, and a bit of rain - Pearl and I played inside almost all morning and Mr. Lee got a bath. Kind of a spoiler this weather as the 90's are due to return next week, but not to enjoy would be insanity, impossible I think. Straining at the keys, some restlessness tugs at me to move; but I'd like to wrestle longer with this page. After all my last post was fairly strong. I don't seem to be so "bothered" now. I seem to be sliding into the denial pool of living, adding more tumeric to my diet, keeping up qigong, but not overly concerned with skin. Well, this is dishonest; I am worried about my skin enough that I am avoiding sun in the hot afternoon. And I'm looking for a UV protective shirt after returning one from LL Bean, knowing that I'd rather stay inside than wear it out. The topic which creeps into my mind is, cancer happens so damn fast. Well, the cancer probably didn't happen so fast in my body, but the discovery and consequences happened way quick. Too speedy for my assessment emotionally. I mean I was just learning to live with my "shark bite" scar when at the first 3 month check up they do another biopsy which a few days later is said to be another melanoma! This one fell heavily. I tried to hang onto the good news that it was "insitu" which did carry me far. In fact, if I hadn't been visited by my old friend (known each other since 6th grade), I might have keep my delusional mask on tight. Well, her visit and the near catastrophe of the garden tour pulled down my facade. I had cancer. It has been removed. But now I have to be checked again and again. It is rare the dermatologist says to have two melanomas, and very rare to have three. I'm rare enough. I'll bask in the three month hiatus from full body check! I'll let myself stress out every third month! I'll look into the vacation suggestion Ezra gave me.
When I mentioned to a friend that I couldn't attend something which I don't now recall because I had just heard from the dermatologist that I had another melanoma, she proceeds to pull up her blouse to show her back. Oh, I had many removed! There were discolored spots, but no scars that once had sutures, no 26 stitch long slice which I now have on my back, or 2 1/2" scar that looks like a shark bite on my left upper arm. She would be dead. She did later change her story, not melanomas. Another friend when I told her of my melanoma, two in the last 5 months, stripped off her shorts to expose what she claimed were suspect spots. I couldn't see anything. Look folks, I do NOT think that in your right mind you would take out a boob for some one to check for lumps, if that someone just told you that they had breast cancer! "Hello," my cancer is not about YOU.
I might have guessed what Mr. Lee was barking at sooner, only I just dismissed his persistence; but this afternoon at peak stress moment, I went to look: a turtle. "Mr. Lee," I said "NO, turtles are our friends." This, of course, was not persuasive. I finally got Mr. Lee on the deck and took Mr. Turtle up creek - far enough away the he has escaped harassment so far this evening. This morning I found another black snake in the coop and hustled down to the river. Realizing that I had better not risk wading across with the wound on my back, I just let him loose down river. Now it looks like Yoga Sharon has finally arrived.
There was a time, age seventeen, when I wanted scars. I wanted a scar that was a warning. This was before tattoos or I would perhaps have gone for a tattoo/a sign that would alert viewer to the fact that "this woman has suffered some trauma - tread with caution." At seventeen I took up smoking, it looked tough, I wanted to be tough. This is the dilemma of a "cute" person. Today I have a good scar, one that looks like a wild big mouthed animal - maybe shark - took a bite out of my upper left arm. And now I have a fresh one on my back, no depth to this one, but a bit longer. It is bandaged. I won't really get a look til tomorrow. Susan says it is a good one, that our friend Ann won't like it. Susan came with me to the dermatologist's office and she got to watch the whole excision of my second melanoma. I asked the doctor if there was a chance I'd have another; I mean I'm ready to give up scars, I've got enough. He said it is rare to have three. I asked,"do they die before they get another?" The two medical students laughed with me and Dr. Hurd smiled. "no they are still alive!" Oh I was giggly - I mean, what's to do in such a situation. Glad this melanoma was insitu, and glad i didn't have to be put out. Glad I'm a giggly sort a cute 66 year old with scars!