Category Archives: Barbara Ellen

Twin Pecan Trees

That’s what I’ve decided are the twin grandfather trees off our back porch at Neely’s Canyon. By the shape of their leaves, which are spearhead-like.

And that explains why the squirrels like to play on them, says Barbara Ellen. Ah, but I have seen them play on big oaks, too.

Too bad we can’t gather their pecans, but they are deeply rooted a good hundred feet down the steep slope of the canyon and therefore unreachable. Chiefly because it would be a bear for us two old fogies  to climb back up.

Grocery wars

Bar came back from Randall’s with a sad tale of an elderly woman crying because there was no toilet paper and a young man stealing something from another young man’s cart when he wasn’t looking. Many shelves bare but store PA system, words in lieu of usual music, says restock on Monday.

Working from home

Easy for information workers, like us, who could work from the beach if we chose. Bar is set up with my old laptop on her analyst job. Getting a new one delivered soon. Our upstairs neighbor, an accountant, brought in two monitors yesterday to work from home. I am retired, so it’s just another day.

UPDATE:  Bar’s server keeps crashing and losing her work. Twice so far. Too many people on the system, apparently.

Bar’s eyes

Barbara Ellen’s been meditating to a guided mp3 by medium Suzanne Wilson. Just five minutes with her eyes closed but enough time to see eyes looking back at her: “Just eyes. Male and female, but so many.” Not threatening. Just cool.

High Plains drifter

Our old Army OCS friend Russ Wheat wanted to be buried in Higgins, Texas, on the High Plains, about 800 miles north of Canyon Lake where he spent his retirement years.

So, when he was discovered deceased at home alone by his pastor shortly before Xmas, a local funeral home drove him in his casket to Higgins. There was no autopsy, apparently because there was no sign of foul play and the sheriff learned that Russ was under the care of the VA hospital in San Antonio for multiple maladies, including prostate cancer. He was 81.

The executor of Russ’s estate returned his dozen or so stray dogs to the Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation in nearby Kendalia where Russ was a benefactor. One dog was blind in one eye, one had three legs and some were mangy. Russ had shared his one bedroom home with some of them for almost twenty years.

Canyon Lake is a little town near San Antonio catering to retirees. Higgins, near Oklahoma, is a little town barely clinging to life, with a living population of about 400, according to a 2017 article in Texas Monthly. Russ, unmarried and apparently childless, is buried with his parents in the town cemetery, on one of the few hills on the prairie.

Barbara Ellen and I are planning to go in March. We’ll make it a leisurely trip of a few hundred miles a day to see the wildflowers, and Palo Duro Canyon, as well as my friend’s resting place: a High Plains drifter gone to ground at last.

Anne Boleyn

Bar has me watching The Tudors by Showtime. Mostly fiction but on a base of history. In which I have become interested in Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII’s second wife and queen, until he had her and four presumed lovers beheaded for adultery. Reading through some book samples off Amazon to try and find something credible to read.

UPDATE:  Finally settled on Brit historian Eric Ives’ The Life and Death of Ann Boleyn

Love Lives On

“This one of the best grief and mourning books around and I have read more than a score of them since my wife died of cancer in 2015. Louis LaGrand’s effort is remarkable because it blends the best grief and mourning advice with the latest understanding of life-after-death and reincarnation. Sort of a one-stop on the subjects that most pertain to each other. If you’re grieving/mourning anything or anyone and need not to spend money on a dozen such books this is your best bet. Thank you, Mr. LaGrand.”

And so I wrote in an Amazon review in May, 2016, and so I still contend after sending the book to my step-daughter who recently lost her alcoholic father. He sent her a gift of love in a radio play that her boyfriend wrote off as a coincidence but I think was one of LaGrand’s Extraordinary Experiences. And if she will remain open to them there will be many more in a new, actually better relationship than before.

As the author says: “Focusing on that source of everlasting care and support can give us great strength (and) energy to use in the restoration of life after loss.”