House of Mirrors

Last week, I saw a woman walking down a long hallway were I work. She was holding a piece of paper, and glancing at it as if it was a map. I knew she was lost, and I was tempted to ask her how long she had been missing, and if she needed food and water, but she looked healthy enough.

The  building where I work would qualify as a very large house of mirrors. If a person is directionally challenged (E-W, N-S) there is very little hope. Each side, front and back, of the building is a mirror image of the other, including duplicate floors and identical room numbers. Each room number is preceded by the number of the floor, so 5F915, exists on the 5th floor of the north and south ends of the building.  The letter of the alphabet is just thrown in there to confuse everyone. The only letters used are F, G, H, and J. In the center of this megalithic structure there is a large atrium with lush plantings, open to the sky. The atrium serves no real purpose, except to remind those who become entrapped that the outside world still exists.

There are two 8-story parking garages, one on the East side, and one on the West. Needless to say, they are identical, and on each floor of each garage there is a set of sliding glass doors  which automatically open, welcoming the unsuspecting to the atrium. From a directional standpoint, the quote from Dante’s Inferno, Abandon all hope, ye who enter here, should be engraved over each portal.

Normally, the first decision point would be to go left or right. Even if there was an inscription on the wall stating, “The sun rises in the East, and sets in the West“, a visitor would wonder why someone would place that information at the entrance. The inscription should be a clue, but of no real help, since you could only see the sun at high noon as it passes over the atrium.

The lady was looking for new employee orientation, and she was only about 50 yards away from her destination. As I gave her directions, I mentioned that she was very close to her point of entry, just in case she wanted to escape. I just forgot to ask if she was parked in the East or West garage.

I have visions of her standing in one of the garages, in front of an empty parking space, while pushing the panic button on her key fob, trying to locate her vehicle. That’s not an uncommon occurrence either.

I think I failed to mention that I work for the Federal Government. I have high hopes of visiting the Pentagon one day. I love a challenge.





The time of your life…

Today and for the past year or so, I’ve been contemplating time…even when I didn’t know it.


Time to wake up

Time to get ready for school (work)

Time to fix dinner

Time to eat,

Time to go to bed

Rinse and repeat…

Time to get a job

Time to do my taxes

Time to retire

Olden times…


Life on a timeline…

When I was a little girl, I thought life was all about birthdays, and growing up, finishing school, getting married and living the Barbie and Ken life. Notice of course, that Barbie and Ken never had children, so that wasn’t part of my childish equation; neither did they have jobs that I’m aware of. I was always waiting on time, the right time.

I think when I was in my late thirties, I imagined that retirement meant that you didn’t need to wear a watch or have clocks in the house. You did everything on your own time.

But hey, the sun comes up in the east, daytime, and sets in the west, nighttime. Time just keeps on rolling along, whether you wear a watch or not. (That is really old thinking, most people don’t need a watch now; they have their cell phone to check the time.) I need to remember that I’m in a new century. I started out near the midpoint of the last century and now I’m 15 years into the new one.

In January 2014, I experienced a new time…unemployed time. After working for the same organization for 39 years, my entire department was eliminated. I’m a baby boomer, so you get a job while your in your 20s and stick with it.

Naive time…I thought I would be out of work for a month or so.

Sometimes you’re having a good time and you don’t know it.

Past your prime time…

Big gap in my planned timeline. Time and tide waits for no man.

So, with 14 months of time on my hands, job searching…and what a time that was, I am out of the unemployment line.

Now I have no time. Time to go to work. [back to the refrain]

Even Howdy Doody had a “time”.




Double, double toil and trouble…

Act 4, SCENE I. A cavern. In the middle, a boiling cauldron.
Thunder. Enter the three Witches

First Witch
Thrice the brinded cat hath mew’d.

Second Witch
Thrice and once the hedge-pig whined.

Third Witch
Harpier cries ‘Tis time, ’tis time.
First Witch
Round about the cauldron go;
In the poison’d entrails throw.
Toad, that under cold stone
Days and nights has thirty-one
Swelter’d venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i’ the charmed pot.


Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

Second Witch
Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt and toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg and owlet’s wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.

eye of newt

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Third Witch
Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf,
Witches’ mummy, maw and gulf
Of the ravin’d salt-sea shark,
Root of hemlock digg’d i’ the dark,
Liver of blaspheming Jew,
Gall of goat, and slips of yew
Silver’d in the moon’s eclipse,
Nose of Turk and Tartar’s lips,
Finger of birth-strangled babe
Ditch-deliver’d by a drab,
Make the gruel thick and slab:
Add thereto a tiger’s chaudron,
For the ingredients of our cauldron.

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Second Witch
Cool it with a baboon’s blood,
Then the charm is firm and good.

Out of tissues for a while now…Part 1

Me and Ricochet, training for Winter Classic 2006

My sister and I have had several horses over the years and used to spend every weekend riding, washing and fussing over our mounts or cleaning tack. We began riding at the place where we still board our horses today. The facility, family owned and operated,  is on 20 acres of woods, out in the country, far enough away from the city that cell phone coverage is spotty at best. It’s a comfortable place, nothing pretentious, and the family lives on the property. The owner breeds Arabians, so naturally, we started out riding Arabians.

I’ve had Richie (my nickname for him) for more years than I can remember. His breed is National Show Horse (NSH), a combination of Arabian & American Saddlebred. Because he’s registered Half Arabian and NSH, I could show him in either type of breed events, so I was thrilled. He came to me fully trained in English Country Pleasure and English Show Hack, with a lengthy show record. He’s probably the most powerful horse I’ve ever ridden, a Cadillac ride, and a real looker too. His one drawback…he was ‘over it’ performing, that is. He hated arena work and couldn’t wait to get out of the gate. He had been to so many shows, that as soon as we went into the arena, he was ‘on stage’ and started performing his routine on autopilot. Once he finished, he was ready to go back to eating hay out in the pasture. I spent a lot of time teaching him to just walk in the arena, but I had to be prepared for prancing, head-tossing, and his ‘let’s get this over with’ attitude. Eventually, I shortened his arena work and started taking him on trails out in the woods. I had some trepidation about being in the woods with him, because a.) I don’t think he was ever ridden on trail and b.) because there are so many critters: squirrels, armadillos, gopher turtles (yes, horses will even spook over a turtle on the path), deer, and the occasional bird flying up out of the bushes. My concern was for naught; he actually let out a huge sigh whenever we entered the woods and he ‘just’ walked like he was on a Sunday looky-loo. As he got older, I retired him from his show career and we just enjoyed being together and in the woods. As I look back over the time we spent together, I realize he taught me how to hang on for dear life, and I taught him how to relax. We had great fun.

to be continued…

Today we had to say goodbye…

To our best boy

A member of our family of three.

He has returned to God,

And we’re grateful for the time we spent together.

God, let him play and jump,

like he did when he played with me.

He could touch his nose to mine you see.

He loved to chase squirrels

And play keep away

When he found a stick.

He likes to go out in the middle of the night,

And look up at the stars and moon.

He saw the aliens with me.

We’ve listened to hoot owls,

And barked at critters that shouldn’t be

Walking around in our territory.

Today has to be one of the saddest days…

4 mos old
Brother and Sister


White Dog and his sister, all grown up
White Dog and his sister, all grown up
White Dog meets his cousin for the first time
White Dog meets his cousin for the first time
Vicious Corgi puppy!
Vicious Corgi puppy!
Best Buddies
Best Buddies


White Dog was diagnosed with an osteo sarcoma in his right knee right after I came home from vacation in June. It’s a very rapid growing bone cancer and because of his size, he wasn’t a candidate for surgery. He never gave up, even when he was on medicine to control his pain . In the past three days, he went steadily downhill and even though he couldn’t tell me, I knew the pain was becoming too much. My husband and I are basically devastated with the loss of our beloved puppy. So many tears…

White Dog’s sister, was my sister’s dog. She is no longer with us either.