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.

 

 

 

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The wake

Some wakes celebrate the life of someone who has passed, but in the wake of Irma, we celebrate the demise of one who wreaked devastation.

I read someone’s post earlier this week (posted under “humor”) about why anyone would want to live in Florida, a hurricane magnet, and live in fear of the loss of life, or destruction of one’s home. We have tornados too, so I guess we have two strikes against us. We have no basements. We’re only about 100 feet above sea level.

I was born here, and I still live here.

At least with hurricanes, we can prepare in advance, so I won’t be moving to Kansas any time soon. Prepare is the most important word in that sentence. When hurricane season begins, you begin to prepare. It’s an Aesop fable I learned as a child, The Ant and the Grasshopper. Those who live on the coast, must be prepared to leave. Although the storm tracked up the gulf, the backlash was felt even on the east coast because it spawned tornados. The weather radio compared Irma to the size of Ohio. I can’t say I’ve ever been there, but it was interesting here, for sure.

Central Florida, Orlando specifically, is on the same latitudinal line as NASA. I don’t think NASA built there without giving it some thought, and I’m happy to share in their reasoning, even if I don’t know what it is.

Plus Disney World is here (NASA Theory), and tourists. I marvel at people who save a boat load of money to bring their family here during the summer, when temperatures are 95 plus degrees, and heat indexes are well above 100 degrees. But, I’m one to talk; I love visiting the frozen northland during winter.

We were without power for almost 3 days, and as soon as our power was restored I lowered the thermostat on the AC to see if I could get it to snow in the house.

Everyone I know has two refrigerators. One in the house, like the rest of the country, and one in their garage for ice and water, and other libations. We stocked up on ice and water early. We went through 60lbs of ice before our power came back on. I shared water and cooked on the grill (everything that I could before we lost it) for our neighbors that rode out the storm. I had placed the grill in our garage to weather the storm. It’s easy to roll the grill out in the driveway.

I know you don’t think I was grilling in the garage.

I’ve had a camp-style coffee pot for years. There wasn’t a day I missed my coffee. I do have some priorities.

After 3 days of no power, everyone in our neighborhood lost all of the food in their refrigerators, so we will clean them out and start anew.

We lost one tree, and have raked a load of leaves and picked up limbs until my sweaty back hurts.

Even as I am doing a ton of laundry and sweaty bed linens, I know how fortunate we are, and I pray for those who are still dealing with the wake of Irma. I’m not sure that fortunate is the appropriate word. I prayed to God for our safety and the safety of all those in her path. I do think prayers are answered. It’s all about faith.

 

 

 

 

Scratch the sling-shot maneuver…

Friday – Rush Hour Traffic

Self, JustI say, Perhaps I’ll stay at the back of the pack. It would be a shame to die on a Friday afternoon.

A wise decision, me thinks!

Frosted flakes

dr-z-snow-in-house

Just before sunrise on a chilly, February morning…

Me: I think I’ll turn on the heat to take the chill off the house

Husband: It’s not that cold. Why don’t you put on more clothes?

Me: I’m already wearing 3 layers! Including my Uggs!

ugg-boots

Husband: [sigh]

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Me: You know I hate winter! Floridians shouldn’t have to live like this!

Saturday…

Today is laundry day…

My mother had hand embroidered dish towels with the days of the week, and a different chore assigned to each. I remember laundry day was one of them, but I don’t remember the specific day.

My husband reminded me that he had blood on the sleeve of one of his favorite shirts, and he asked me to try and get it out.

I was an emergency/trauma nurse for 25 years; if there’s one thing I can do, it’s get blood out of a shirt.

I also had to pick off stick-tights and a sand spur, because he and the dog are like magnets when it comes to traveling weed seeds.

I can remember when I was little, my mother used to let me sew buttons on the dish towels. She had a tin full of buttons, all shapes and sizes. I knew needles were sharp.

My sister is 4 1/2 years younger, and I don’t remember mother letting her do anything with a needle.

My husband is 4 1/2 years younger than me. Sometimes I think he and my sister are twins. I marvel sometimes over their similarities.

I like laundry day. My thoughts wander, and I remember things I haven’t thought about in years.

electric-washing-machine