Saturday the temperature stayed a few degrees above freezing. A light rain fell intermittently throughout the day. I walked in Glendover Park when the rain let up a bit. My step counter app now counts more steps than before, after an interval with fewer steps per outing. I drove in the late morning to PetSmart to get a new sack of food for Beatrice. Beatrice's food is a matter of some intricacy, as she has for years been on a prescription weight management dog food. In prior times, all one needed was to have the fact of a past prescription in the store's computer system. Now, though, one must regularly bring a renewed prescription in to get a plastic passport from the store. The woman in the animal hospital at the back helped me cheerfully. I saw behind her a sign which listed all the first names of the dogs who were in for their "wellness checks". Meanwhile, a picture window to my right showed a number of contented-looking dogs enjoying something called Doggie Day Care.
I passed another wall on the opposite side in which cats were in glass cases, awaiting adoption. I have not owned a cat since I was an adult, but I could easily imagine adopting any of those eligible candidates. When I checked out, the nice woman behind the counter asked if I wanted to donate to a local children's charity. I was happy to do so. A great deal of barking emitted from a van just outside the store. "We're going to be in for a noisy one", the nice cashier said, and its transpired this was the dog adoptee crowd. While they usually would be stationed outside the store, the rain meant they had to come inside the store. I hope they all get adopted. I am intrigued, by the way, with the language people use about dogs, such as "forever home" as a place for adoptees, and a "rainbow bridge" as a passage to the afterlife. I like the idea of traveling on a rainbow bridge to the afterlife, but Beatrice might prefer a grassy path bordered with dog treats.
I walked in Limestone Quarry Park, where the stark colors of open fields of dead grasses enchanted me.
In the mid-afternoon, we went to the home in Plano of one of my wife's co-workers. She and her husband were holding a Christmas open house. When we first arrived, her mother greeted us at the door. Her mother explained that my wife's co-worker collected nativity scenes. She had lived in England, where, the mother explained "people go to Europe the same way we go to Oklahoma or Arkansas". I agree with the idea she was expressing, though some part of me wants to explain the differences between Tishomingo, Oklahoma and Luxembourg City.
Dickens reports that the reformed Scrooge kept Christmas in his heart. My wife's co-worker keeps Christmas in her house, with dozens of nativity sets and numerous themed Christmas trees. I liked the Grinch Tree, the Dickens Tree and the little village of bethlehem. My favorite nativity scene was a felt-coated set from Eastern Europe.
I liked the fellow who hosted. He lives in Toronto much of the year, and with his wife, my wife's co-worker, the rest of the year. He explained how the novelty of driving in Texas, with its slight regulatory differences from Toronto, had worn off. He lamented, a bit, the loss of that feeling of alien-ness. I understood his point exactly.
The rain picked up in the late afternoon. We stopped for pho ga' at Saigon Street. It went well with the chill in the air. At home ,we rented the Patrick Stewart version of "A Christmas Carol". I was intrigued with how many versions of the story exist in film beyond the substantial number I know already.
Sunday I walked on the Chisholm Trail, and then went to WW. I was up 2/10ths of a pound. I am holding steady on that plan. After WW, I walked in Shawnee Park. The weather was cold, but I had a nice walk. At church, the sermon covered exchanging fear for love.
My least favorite part of church is the part in which everyone is supposed to greet each other. In theory, this should be an affirming ritual, with tis kind words and human contact. For me, the ritual somehow emphasizes how much I do not know these my neighbors. The minister suggested also that we all move up closer to the front rows. I always think that with church attendance declining, churches should not award "style points" for where one sits in the sanctuary. But I moved up to the 5th row and was probably better for the experience. I like, by the way, either being in the back 3 rows or the front 3. I am grateful to have a journal in which to be able to publicly demonstrate my mild dose of curmudgeonry.
After church, I went to Panda Express for a fine meal of mixed vegetables, broccoli beef and string bean chicken. Then I walked in Green Park, where I saw a half-dozen species of birds. In the mid-afternoon, I turned on the local sports team's televised game and worked on some work paperwork. I feel asleep early.
I woke suitably early and got to the office well in advance of my morning meeting. I learned that my busy week would still be busy, but that most of the most busy parts would be at the end of the week.
I walked in Salmon Park in Sachse, which was wet from the Saturday rain. I got chicken at Church's.
My wife had a work party tonight. I stopped at Schell Park on the way home to walk a bit. Then I got a Subway turkey sandwich and baked chips. At home, I made a WW mug cake. I think I did not add enough water, as the cake was pretty good but the cake size was small.
My dog Beatrice are enjoying our evening, and all seems right with the world.
I like the way that social media lets one think about things one would not necessarily consider. I read tweets about issues people in Dunblane, Scotland (a town I liked very much during a very brief visit) are having with Scotsrail schedule changes. The Unqualified Podcast had an interview with Sophia Bush, who explained how she once thought that she was "too much" for the people she dated, but now knows that she should find people who can accept who she is. My cousin's podcast discussed the passing of and funeral for President George H.W. Bush and the ongoing demise of our "Greatest Generation".
I am delinquent in designing our personal Christmas Card this year. Perhaps I will tackle that tonight or tomorrow.
from Dreamwidth, because two posts of the same text are twice as nice