Just a note … where I am right now – October 5, 2016

duck_small

Hello Everyone:

When I first opened my blog I had no particular goal in mind.  Then in March of that year I began to write poetry thanks to a defunct prompting blog and at the same time, elsewhere, I discovered power-shorts and other short forms of micro-prose and I started having fun.  I later discovered how to develop and upload photographs to illustrate my writing. Eventually I moved to Japanese poetry and haiga …

During all that time I was also struggling in a difficult marital relationship.  My companion was never very supportive of anything I did.  He had a lot of anger inside and tended to lash out against others. The closer a person was to him the more difficult it was for those people to live with him. He was rarely physically violent – so he felt safe in saying to himself that he wasn’t violent. But he was very violent psychologically and he did everything he could to persuade me to close down my blogs. Which was why I wrote at 5:00 in the morning. It was a compromise I was willing to take to keep writing without provoking his insecurities.  Which didn’t always work as I’m sure anyone who’s had this sort of problem will know.

Last October,  after a more violent storm than usual over a banality (the change from daylight savings time) I fled my home to get away from his rages.  It wasn’t the first time, but intimately I’d decided, no matter what the cost, I was going to leave him. The next afternoon a phone call came informing my son and I that he was dead, he’d died in an traffic accident.

In this sort of situation, the first thing that comes to mind is that there must be a mistake.  You don’t feel much … just sort of a numbness … no real surprise no shock just disbelief.  “No,” you say “that’s just not possible.”  It’s the people huddling around you – and the phone calls from people you’ve not heard from in years – trying to tell you everything is going to be “ok” that convinces you that there’s something wrong. To me it just kept feeling sort of distant.  I’d feel something like sadness but it would drift away and I’d feel numb again.

Then I felt relieved.  He wasn’t going to rage at me anymore.  No more flying furniture.  No more denigration.  No more fights.  Those who knew him and know me, told me I shouldn’t feel guilty – even before I felt that relief (which made me feel guilty). Feeling sad for the loss of someone mixed with the relief that a bad situation is over isn’t easy to focus on.  What is even more difficult is moving on.  During the 28 years I was with my husband our relationship became more and more closed.  It was hard to make friends with him constantly judging everyone so our friendships with other couples became stillborn affairs pretty quickly.  We didn’t have many friends. The friends I made outside our relationship were fragile affairs that lived on the time borrowed from my marriage.

I’m not a person who talks about my feelings … I’ve become sort of detached.  I’ve worked very hard to become detached to live in the here and now ;  to concentrate on the juicy strawberry whilst the tiger above and the tiger below wait for me to decide to climb up or fall into the gully.  I can tell you all about the moon reflected in a pond just reflecting a bit of reality.  I knew that my husband’s rages weren’t my husband’s nature.  I knew that he felt terribly about his rages – but couldn’t do a damned thing about controlling them – in fact it was a miracle he’d never beaten me up physically.

A friend asked me why I didn’t leave him.  I guess I could say that I didn’t leave him because I didn’t know where to go but that’s a lie.  In a very worse case scenario I always knew I could go home to the States.  I’d found a job at one time and I could have moved out and gotten an apartment.  I thought about leaving him, I really did.  Then I’d think that he’d have felt devastated – he was always so very aware of being alone, he knew everyone preferred not to have to deal with him.  I didn’t leave him because I’d committed myself to our relationship – because I knew that in his own way he did love me and in my way I loved him.

So now sometimes I think, he’d somehow guessed that I wasn’t coming back this time and I wonder if the accident was really an accident.  Of course there’s no way to know if any of this is more than my guilt feelings jabbing me in my conscience.  He’s gone and the battles are over.  He doesn’t have to feel detested any more and I don’t have to pretend that all that anguish wasn’t painful.  I feel lonesome sometimes.  I feel free sometimes.  I also feel like I want to wait a long long time before I even ever want to begin to think of ever having another relationship.

And that’s where I am right now.  I don’t feel inspired to write very often.  I don’t feel very inspired to go for walks anymore either.  Right now I’m drifting – so I’ve made an appointment with a psychologist to help me work through some of these feelings that are walled up inside me, basically because I’ve no one to talk to about these issues.

Maybe I’ll be a better writer for all this … or maybe I’ll never really be able to write at all.  As my Sis would say, it is what it is.  But I hope to get back to writing soon.

Ciao, Georgia

Just a Note – May 15, 2016

Ciao.

This is just a note to say that I won’t be able to dedicate time to my blog for the next few weeks.  You might have noticed that I’ve been rather absent for the last week or so.  If you remember I’d been off for a historical reenactment event and of course couldn’t get to a computer (or even electric lights) while I was with the company.  However, once I reached home i had some sad news.  Suffice it to say that I’ve been rather busy organizing an unplanned trip to the United States.

I do hope that once I arrive that I might write a little, but I don’t know what to expect.  I will be home again though by the end of June.

I hope to see you all from time to time on the reader … I think I’ll find it easier to read than write.  See you soon and happy writing.

Namaste, Bastet

Carpe Diem Haiga – Spring in Arco – April 10 2016

Riuso Haiga_small

I was rather busy yesterday and never got around to publishing a post.  What was I doing?  Participating in our bi-annual community “giornata de ri-uso”:

Listener

Basically at the changing of the seasons – from summer to winter and winter to spring, our city council organizes a campaign to gather those objects and clothing that would often end up tossed out.  In the United States one might have a garage sale a practice that’s never caught on here.

Everything is brought to a pick-up point then the volunteers go through the stuff, dividing the good stuff from the trash.  We then distribute the stuff free of charge.  There are also activities for children in a close by separate area.

Here are a few more scenes:

Spring is on the way in Arco!  Ciao, Bastet.

Just a Note: We’re Closing the Library … at least for a while. March 26, 2016

Zoning collage

Hello Folks!

I won’t be going private until May … I forgot that I’d accepted the A to Z Blogging Challenge with this address …

I’ve been thinking and pondering and reflecting etc. and have decided that I will be putting this blog on hold for a little while.  Which does not mean I won’t be writing – I will be writing for Through the Eye of Bastet (photography),  Walking with Bastet in Prose (stories) and Bastet’s Waka Library (on Blogger) .  I will also be writing on The Poet’s Corner from time to time.  So if  you’re following these blogs you’ll be able to continue to follow my writing.

 

Ciao for now!

Bastet

Just a Note – February 10, 2016

Park Bench - Riva del Garda

Hello everyone!

Some people have expressed their worry because I’ve not been posting as much as usual and wonder if I’m alright.  I’ve also been grumpy and have said I might just close the blogs down.  But there’s nothing to worry about, I’m alright – it just seems that February is determined to be a rather hectic month and I’m feeling a bit flapped.  I’ve been going to bed later than usual because of social affairs and have had early morning appointments .. which means that some mornings I have just the time necessary to fulfill my self-set obligations of writing a haiku for “No Five-Seven-Five”‘s NaHaiWriMo and my personal One Month of Haiga.  I’m a morning person, and if I don’t write the first couple of hours in the morning I risk not writing at all.

I’m overcoming my nicotine drug habit, but one of the side-effects (which is thankfully wearing off) is a certain lack of concentration.  So as I count one-month and one week cigarette free today, a few of the symptoms of underneath craving still make themselves felt.  But by giving up caffeine and keeping a close watch on my diet, I’ve at least avoided other problems like insomnia and gaining weight. Usually people take one step at a time … they stop smoking then worry about losing weight.  That didn’t seem like a wise solution for me – I prefer to workout the symptoms all at once.

Anyway … not to worry.  I’m fine and all I need to do is find a way of focusing while relaxing.  I hope to do some recouping this weekend  and I certainly hope that March will have be calmer in the mornings, che sarà sarà!

Hope you’re all doing fine too!

Ciao for now,  Bastet

Just a Note – Our Disposable Society (A Bit Of A Rant) – January 30, 2016

Hello Folks!

I don’t think there has ever been a period in our history where people have been more manipulated then we, the descendants of the “Industrial Revolution”.  Today’s values are drastically changed from those of just thirty years ago. We have been propelled into a disposable world.  The products which we buy are made to wear down far more rapidly than in the past.  Once, a company might have been stigmatized for poor quality products, now it would seem that no one really cares – unless of course they don’t have the money to replace the objects that they need with a new working versions of that objects.

We buy an e-readers, e-pods, digital cameras etc and discover that it has a life of perhaps two to three years.  Basically because the battery dies and there’s no way to replace the battery.  But then, why ever would one want to keep an object for more than three years?  The new versions have so many great “upgrades” And look at the great colours – yada yada.  Of course this is just one example of how the disposable economy works.  Think about that coffee maker you bought a couple of years ago … the ones that used this or that type of capsule, that went out of production, you’ve still got the coffee maker perhaps but you can’t use it.  Think about your great printer, that one with a super low price, didn’t you have to replace the ink cartridges after about a month, and the cartridges cost almost as much as the printer.

Microsoft and the computer companies under its economic umbrella have hit onto the ultimate way to induce consumers to renew their whole configuration of electronic products by simply changing their operating system every two years or so.  XP, fell to Vista, which fell to Seven (and many gave a sigh of relief)) which fell to Eight which is now succumbing to Ten.  Vista came out when? In 2007, not even a decade ago.  Oh and if you have to buy a new computer, you will be obliged to buy it with the new Operating System … and probably will have to replace your older model scanner, printers or what ever peripheries you have and you’ll see why below.

Now for synergy at it’s most sinister.  The software known as drivers for a lot of peripheral objects like printers have to be written or adapted for the new OS … at a certain point, these companies simply make a “new” version of their printer without the older Operating System’s “drivers” being included this means that one can’t use that printer on one’s older system – if you have a new computer you can’t use the old drivers of the peripheries (yes your machine worked but you have to chuck them anyway) – voilà the sales of printers, scanners etc. go up.  As time passes, Microsoft stops updating their older products. (Just as an aside, does anyone remember Microsoft Reader … if you see any old .lit files you might not know what to do with them .. the reader was dropped by Microsoft and no longer updated, those who bought the reader were left hanging – I’m afraid it doesn’t bode well for my favourite mobile phone producer, Nokia).

Of course if the platform as an OS is now formally called had been made without security wholes that wouldn’t be such a big deal. This is not the case, they are vulnerable to security attacks  – and so we need security updates and when there are no security updates our computer can be hacked through the Internet.  After a period of time even browsers like Google Chrome etc. stop writing security software for the older OS :

“Earlier this year, we announced that Google Chrome would continue support for Windows XP through the remainder of 2015.  At that time, we strongly encouraged users on older, unsupported platforms such as Windows XP to update to a supported, secure operating system. Such older platforms are missing critical security updates and have a greater potential to be infected by viruses and malware.

Today, we’re announcing the end of Chrome’s support for Windows XP, as well as Windows Vista, and Mac OS X 10.6, 10.7, and 10.8, since these platforms are no longer actively supported by Microsoft and Apple. Starting April 2016, Chrome will continue to function on these platforms but will no longer receive updates and security fixes.

If you are still on one of these unsupported platforms, we encourage you to move to a newer operating system to ensure that you continue to receive the latest Chrome versions and features.

Posted by Marc Pawliger, Director of Engineering and Early Notifier

Once upon a time, there was a wheel.  The wheelwright put all his skill into making his wheels the sturdiest wheels around and he had many loyal customers who stood by his product and brought their friends.  His wheels lasted for ages.  But he wasn’t part of a multi-national occult cartel – his clients wanted a good wheel that worked and was sturdy .. not a gadgety hodgepodgeery wheel that changed how you had to mount it every two years meaning eventually one was obliged to buy a new cart (and maybe even a new horse) in order to use the wheel.  Sure, the guy down the street was right, the new wheels are cheap, you can buy them for a fraction of the price of the wheelwright’s wheels .. but is it really worth it.  Besides, that neighbours back yard is full of broken discarded wheels 😉 .

The majority of consumers today are exactly what the word implies .. people who consume – they’re the ruminants who are needed to make a system based on poor quality and greed work.  We see this everywhere …  starting from fast food poison and going on up the chain.  Never has the saying that “people are sheep” been truer than in this age of ever-present propaganda inducing people to put their critical sense on hold as they run blindly towards the latest novelty convinced they are living in opulence.

 

Just a Note – January 3, 2016

Bridge

Hello World!

So, yesterday this blog celebrated its third anniversary and I look back over the three years since I began blogging seriously reflecting on what I want to do when I grow up.

Since the day I opened this blog, I also opened four other blogs, two on WordPress and two on Blogger, well actually one of the blogs on Blogger opened in 2009 but I only began writing on it in 2014, so I consider it new.  I’ve been concentrating all my work here over the past months but I think that I will begin to transfer some of my work over to them and will put links on my widgets to get to them more easily.

Their names are: Through the Eye of Bastet : It is dedicated to my photographic experiments.  This year I will be buying myself a new camera and will begin to do photographic blogs again.  The second is Walking with Sekhmet, this will be the blog that I will use for short stories and other prose works, except for haibun.  My historical Blogger site is called Bastet’s Waka Library.  I Blogged there from June 2014 until February 2, 2015 writing only haiku and waka mostly in response to Carpe Diem Haiku Kai and Haiku Horizon prompts and am considering returning there in the future for these posts.  The last blog is called On the Empty Road, and it is empty, basically because I have to log into another account to write there.

Now diversifying means that I’ll have to do some planning and changing. Some might have noticed that last year I began to put up pages on the header of this blog.  That is because I’m slowly removing all the older posts, editing them and then archiving them as category pages.  This is Bastet and Sekhmet’s Library and therefore, all my blogging work will be available here (except haiku) even if one has to wade through it on pages.  This is a huge job though because I’ve been writing anywhere from two to six or seven posts a day for three years.  So it’ll be a slow go.  With every post I put to a page it will disappear from the main blog.

I will also be publishing this year.  Now this isn’t a resolution, it’s a necessity. The whole point of blogging in the beginning was to leave something behind to remember me by, mostly for my family, now for the friends who may wish to remember me once I’m gone.  Death struck very close to home, as many of you know and that event has pressed upon my mind that anything can happen at any moment.  I’ve been fearful of publishing, it’s not easy for me to learn all the programs and things I need to know to get the job done but as my friend Elena would say we have to overcome our fear to be the best person we can be (my liberal translation).  So, I’ll have to study up on how to get those programs to work best for me.  Already, thanks to Chèvrefeuille at Carpe Diem Haiku Kai, I published a thirty page book of waka (Japanese poetry)  the lay-out work was done by my son whom I sure will help out, but I know he has a lot on his plate and will need to go this more or less alone.

I discovered over the years that I’m a haiku/waka poet.  I can and do write other poetic forms and I can and do write prose.  One of the forms I love is haiga (haiku with a drawing or photograph) … so in February to celebrate my 64th birthday I will hold a month of haiga and invite those interested in joining me in this month-long celebration to do so.  I will hold it here but will also post on Through the Eye of Bastet since that is my photography blog.

Ok … this is my game plan for the next few months of 2016.  I’m actually a terrible organizer so this is enough to begin with and maybe actually too much, we’ll see.

I’d like to thank all you who follow this post for your enthusiastic support.  You’ve kept me going through thick and then, though you might not have realized it.  One of my most faithful readers is a man called Harbin 77 who has passed by every day for the last three years … a special thanks goes to him.

Bastet

 

 

Merry Christmas (Just a Note) – December 24, 2015

 

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Merry Christmas World!

The sun is in a grey funk, but that’s ok since we’ve been blessed with such warm weather that everyone sees the grey clouds as a gift of normalcy!

I probably won’t be on-line for a couple of days as I’ve a lot to do for Christmas. Today I’m holding an open house – tomorrow we’ll be cooking, playing games and doing all those things one does on Christmas Day.  On the 26th we will be celebrating the feast of St. Stephen and will be out roaming.

So here for you are my Christmas wishes for you and your loved ones … may your life be full of love, may peace smile on you and may you have the strength to find serenity in times of trouble.  Merry Christmas.

Just A Note … December 18, 2105

Hello World …

I’ve been having a bit of problems the last few days fighting windmills and bouncing off rubber walls … getting nowhere fast, except into a state of frustrated anger. This morning I poured my reflections out in a bi-lingual haibun – Italian with an English translation.  I don’t usually like to pour my personal problems out into the ethereal void that is virtual reality, but this morning I just felt I had not only to write my reflections, but I needed to have someone read them.  I even put a link to the post on Facebook.

Once I’d done that, I felt a surge of energy and decided that I would solve my problem by myself and dismiss the persons who were supposed to help me.  Before doing that I called one last time to one of the two persons and was able to make enough contact to finally get the ball rolling again.  The haibun didn’t help, in the sense that I’m sure neither of the two persons read it or would even have understood it, but it helped me to touch that part inside that was hurting and give me the energy to go beyond the problem and therefore, so it seems, find a way to solve the problem (in Italy one keeps one’s fingers crossed just in case until the very last i is dotted).  I’ll be back to my normal posting mode tomorrow.

I’d like to thank you readers who read the haibun and for your patience, your contribution was precious.

Bastet

Just a Note – My e-book is up! December 7, 2015

Book Cover

Book Cover

Hello Everyone!

 

My e-book, “Old Bamboo Wind Chimes (Peace of Mind)” , a collection of original haiku and waka I just finished writing is up on Carpe Diem Haiku Kai as of today.  You can click HERE to see the announcement and eventual comments about the book  and HERE to read on-line and eventually down-load the book.  You might remember on last week’s Just a Note I wrote all about the book and how it came to be that I was publishing with Chèvrefeuille’s Publications. The haiku below is the winning haiku with the photo I used to illustrate it in the new book.

Old Bamboo Wind Chimes

rain drips
off old bamboo wind-chimes
serenity

I was so excited to send the completed e-book off that ,unfortunately, I didn’t think to send Francesco Neri’s original cover-design to Chèvrefeuille (tell the truth I myself at this moment don’t have the original completed book-cover design myself!).  I hope to e-mail it to Chèvrefeuille some time today.  I’ll also add a link to the book at the side of my blog sometime later (I’ve got a full schedule this morning) … hope you enjoy the book!

Ciao,  Georgia