Fly and Drag

RDP Friday: WEEK

Old English wice, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch week and German Woche, from a base probably meaning ‘sequence, series.’

Image result for week etymology

Well, however they got named, or wherever those names came from,  I’ve been learning something about weeks lately.

They drag and they fly at the same time.

When you’re in a great deal of pain, and you are fortunate enough to have medication to dull the pain, sometimes days seem like months. I don’t do helpless with very much grace.  I’m very thankful to have a husband who has always, always been willing and able to care for me when I’m down and out. Not everyone is so blessed. BUT!  I don’t like it that he HAS to take over my work. He has plenty of his own projects, and his own pain can be debilitating. He never complains about looking after me when my back puts me down and out, but I truly hate being such a burden to him.  So sometimes the days and weeks drag.

However, now that I’m through that particular patch of misery and am back to work, I look back on those 8 weeks or more and wonder where the time went.  Of course, pain medication  can put you in something of a fog. Terry tells me he thinks I’ve missed a lot more than I realize, and he’s probably right.  But I sat or lay down through part of August, all of September, and half of October, and  that time is just gone, never to be retrieved.

Those weeks have flown.

I’m pleased to say that the pain treatment is working well.  I’m no longer drugged up, and I’m looking forward to going to the homeschool co-op in which I teach every other week.  We have an almost painfully beautiful blue October sky, which of course makes all the gorgeous fall colors more intense.  I’m looking forward to the drive, which is through some hilly farm country and stretches of woods.

For now, because of the injection I get for this pain, my life has been handed back to me.  But I also know how fast this pre-holiday season goes, so I think I’d better fasten my seatbelt and get ready to fly 🙂

RDP: Week

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Memories

RDP THURSDAY – BLIZZARD

early 19th century (originally US, denoting a violent blow): of unknown origin.

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How about that,  Unknown origin, but apparently first used in the USA.  Huh.

Well, I spent a lot of my growing up years in southern Minnesota, so I know about blizzards.  Hoo boy.  Cold, cold.  Lots of wind.  We lived in an old farmhouse across the road from a corn field.  The wind would come charging from the northwest,  whistling across that empty winter field, and find a way to dig its icy fingers into every tiny  opportunity.

Image result for southern Minnesota blizzards, 1965

The sound of the wind against the windows, and then the never-ending clatter of the snow thrown by the wind, would always make me hope for a snow day when I woke up.

Almost never happened.  It was a little farm town, and farmers are a tough breed.  The only real concession was the year it stormed every weekend in March (1965).  It would start snowing around noon, and we could expect an early dismissal.  The farm kids had to be safe home before there was any chance of a bus getting into trouble.

By the time the blizzard was done, and the wind had done its work, we could walk from housetop  to housetop on the piled up snow.

While it was still snowing, there were plenty of times we literally couldn’t see more than a foot or so ahead.  It could be really dangerous, and there were some awful stories of people being stranded in their cars with no one knowing where they were, no able to rescue them.

I don’t miss all that.  Here in my corner of PA, we do have some heavy snow at times.  Some people call them blizzards, but the area here is too hilly to allow for that horrendous wind to drive the snow like a weapon.  It does get thick, but I’ve never seen a whiteout here like I remember back in my teen years.

Of course, memory can fail 🙂

RDP: Blizzard

Soaring

PHOTO PROMPT © Jilly Funelli

Jenny clung to her balloon string with all the might in her sweaty, pudgy fist. “Where will it go, Mommy?”

“Why, it will go wherever you take it, Jenny.”

“No, I mean, when it flies me away.  Where will it go?”

Mommy was distracted looking at a pair of jeans. When she turned to answer Jenny’s question, her little girl was floating out the door.

“Jenny! Stop!  Let it go!”

But Jenny was laughing, thrilled with her new adventure. Once she was out the door, the balloon swiftly took her up, up and away.

To somewhere.

Learn Something New

RDP Tuesday: Serendipity

1754: coined by Horace Walpole, suggested by The Three Princes of Serendip, the title of a fairy tale in which the heroes “were always making discoveries, by accidents and sagacity, of things they were not in quest of.”

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Image result for The Three Princes of Serendip

Well, you learn something new every day.  I’ve always wondered where this word came from, never heard of the story before.  Three Princes from a place called Serendip seem to have set out looking for adventure, and were constantly coming across surprising and positive events that made them happy.

Okay, so where did the name Serendip  come from?  Once source says the name comes from an old name for Sri Lanka (Ceylon), hence Sarandibby Arab traders. It is derived from the Sanskrit Siṃhaladvīpaḥ (Siṃhalaḥ, Sri Lanka + dvīpaḥ, island).

I guess that makes a lot of sense.

Anyway,  I’ve never read the story but now I’m quite curious. I just made a quick popover to Amazon and bought a used soft-cover copy for $5.00.  Which I found serendipituous, because the first listing was a hard cover for $120!  My word.

And that’s all for today, folks 🙂

RDP: Serendipity

Having a Blast!

RDP Monday: BLAST

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Image result for Having a blast

The picture really doesn’t have much to do with what I’m thinking, but I really like it–so there it is 🙂

Did you grow up, as I did, in the 50’s and 60’s when “we had a blast!”  was a positive comment on some experience or the other?  It could have been a party, a picnic, a good ball game, an exciting experience like riding a scary roller coaster.  “What a blast!” was high praise.

But from what I’m learning this morning,  the word blast probably had more to do with fire, or a blaze, than an explosion.  Today, that’s what we call an explosion.  A blast.  We use it to demolish a building, or carve a roadway through mountainous territory, or any other occasion in which it is necessary to blow things to kingdom come.

Earlier this year, we had a series of suspicious blasts all around Bucks County and I think in Lehigh, as well.  No one knew what they were. There was talk of military exercises, planes breaking the sound barrier (doesn’t sound the same at all–that’s a BOOM!) and probably some extraterrestrial activity.  They even brought the FBI into the investigation.

Turns out it was some local guy who owns a chemical factory, and I can’t remember now why he was doing what he did.  He never hurt any property or people, so maybe he was just having fun playing with some of his experiments.  Anyway, it sure got everyone’s interest.  Turns out it was just a way down the road from us, near Spinnerstown.

Of course his activity doesn’t explain the the blasting noises that were heard in states several hundreds of miles away.

Someone out there is still having a blast 🙂

RDP:  Blast

A New Word

RDP Saturday – Fleek

early 21st century: apparently an arbitrary formation; popularized in a 2014 video post on the social media service Vine by Kayla Newman (‘Peaches Monroee’).

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So this is a word someone made up in 2014.  I have to wonder if it’s not one of those Cockney words that rhymes with something else that means just the opposite of.  . . . no, wait, I’m getting all tangled up.

Anyway, it seems to be a compliment.  Would you feel really good about it if I said you were looking fleek today? Or, more accurately, that your nail polish is on fleek?

If you’re really interested you can go here: peachesmonroee

Let me warn you that it’s very much a teen girl website 🙂

 

RDP: Fleek

Damp the Fire!

RDP Friday: DAMP

Middle English (in the noun sense ‘noxious inhalation’); related to a Middle Low German word meaning ‘vapor, steam, smoke.’

Image result for heavy rain

We’ve certainly had more than our fair share of dampness this year.  Last I checked, we’re over 13 inches compared to the norm for summer here in my little corner of Pennsylvania.  That’s a lot of water.

There’s sunshine with the clouds today, though, and it’s wonderful to see.  Lifts the spirits.

I’m thinking of another use of damp, though.  I remember, long ago when I was maybe 8 or younger, we were on our way to Colorado to visit my dad’s family.  We had stopped somewhere in Kansas or Nebraska to have breakfast,  and I can’t remember the exact context, but I heard my dad say something like, “Damp the fire.”  I was shocked right out of my mind, because I thought he had said “DAMN the fire!”

He never swore.  Ever.  I was so shocked!  I remember standing there like a deer in the headlights, not knowing what to do or where to go.  He glanced up, must have seen the stunned look on my face, and asked if I was okay.  What do you say in response?  No, I didn’t know either.

What I do remember is that I got tears in my eyes, and he was completely puzzled.  I finally was able to tell him that I thought he’d said a bad word.  Now he was the one to look shocked.  Not for long, though. In fact, suddenly he was snorting with laughter.

When he explained what he had actually said, I felt SO much better 🙂  But then he had to explain what it meant to damp the fire, and he often had a really interesting way of explaining things.  He talked about being out in the desert, building a fire to cook something or the other, and then damping it.

So I understood what a damper was for when Terry and I had a fireplace later on, and I was glad to know how to control the fire by turning the damper one way or another.

Funny the things that a single little word can stir in one’s memory.

RDP: Damp