February 4th, 2018

abstract butterfly

The Post and The Decisions

The temperature on Saturday was only slightly lower than the temperature on Sunday. But Saturday featured high humidity and an Arctic breeze which gusted near 30 km/hour. I enjoyed my outdoors time on Saturday but I found myself in need of layers of clothing.

Saturday morning I walked in Glendover Park, the 10-acre park a short walk from my home.  This year my "experiment" has been to try to take extended walks in this small park.  In the past I kept almost religiously to a circuit of the small pond on the park, which makes for a nearly-perfect one-half-hour loop from my house. This year I circle around in the park.  I get lots more steps this way. I see lots more wildlife this way, too.

Saturday lunch we went to the Food Court next to the Asian grocery in Plano. I hoped that we could visit the place that made meal-size Summer rolls on chilled rice paper. But we did not see that place.  We wandered among the Hakka Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Cajun, Filipino, and Sichuan Chinese choices. We settled on each ordering shrimp and vegetables from a Korean place that served Chinese food. It was very good--I particularly enjoyed the pickled vegetable side.  When I later read up on the subtleties of Hakka cuisine, I decided to try that one next time.

Saturday afternoon I walked in Suncreek Park and the Trail at the Woods in Allen. The brisk wind convinced me that I needed to walk in a wooded area. I got going good, though, when I realized I had left my camera battery in its AC wall-plug charger. I kept on walking, but I missed having the camera. I am neither an expert photographer nor an expert birder, but I like the chance to capture a moment from a walk with an image or video of something I see.

I fetched my camera, and headed to Green Park. This park is even smaller than Glendover Park. I have been pleased to see that the city's replacement of its bland playground equipement with new fire-truck-themed equipment has increased the park's popularity. As the park sits between an elementary school and a fire station, the fire station theme is ideal.  I saw dozens of Cedar Waxwings in a tree.

In the evening, my wife and I met our friends Scott and Donna. Each of them made a major career transition about a year ago. We were thrilled to hear that both had gotten minor but solid good news on the work front. We went to a place in west Plano called the True Food Kitchen. I had a teriyaki quinoa bowl with Salmon added. I liked the meal very much, even if the food being "true" meant I could not order a diet soda. My diet sodas are always true, and sometimes even have a true aftertaste.

We went to the movie "The Post".  LIke the earlier movie "Spotlight", this movie reminded me that truth can stand up to power. As with the movie "Darkest Hour", my reading after the film intrigued me, as so many of the most improbable scenes were the historically true ones, while routine details were sometimes the altered bits. "The Post" and "Darkest Hour" are great antidotes to the depressing feeling that things have never been as bad and fraught with risk as times today, but they are also clarion calls to remind us that each era requires action against the darkness.

This morning I got up and walked on the Chisholm Trail, starting from Orlando Drive and walking eastward. This time I saw some 90+ Cedar Waxwings in the trees. I assume they must be gearing up to go to better berries and buds. Cedar Waxwings, unlike other migratory species, are not mere north/south migrators. They migrate in all directions, with an uncanny sense of where berries are visible. I heard a Carolina Wren in a far-off tree make a territorial call. I heard a Carolina Wren in a nearby tree making an answering call. I looked at the nearby tree, and soon was getting good images and video, as the bird was just fifteen or so feet away.

At Weight Watchers I was up 2/10th of a pound--a good result. The meeting I attend is super-well-attended this January. By May, it will have thinned out a bit, but perhaps not as much as some years. It's a good group. I should talk more during the meeting, I suppose.

After my meeting, I walked in Hoblitzelle Park. I took video of an Eastern Phoebe perched nearby.

Then I went to church. The minister gave a good sermon on open doors and open hearts. He discussed the dilemma facing a study committee of the United Methodist Church about LGBTQ concerns. This group's recommendations are due in 2019. I hope that the church will amend the Book of Discipline to reflect a more liberal view than the current rules. The minister took a middle-course, not revealing his own position. As he said, some folks on the right will leave our denomination if the Book of Discipline is amended. Some will leave the denomination unless the Book of Discipline is amended. . Many folks advocate for middle positions,  The minister stressed the importance of love and inclusion even if issues divide people. I became a Unitarian Universalist in part because I think that church should be very inclusive. I belong to a United Methodist Church, but retain my universalist views. I will have to see what 2019 brings, but I appreciated the minister taking on this somewhat controversial sermon topic.

After church, I had fried catfish and green beans, with a roll, from Chicken Express. I took Beatrice for a walk this afternoon in Glendover Park.. She loved her walk.

The Super Bowl looks like a very good match, but I think we will watch "Victoria" on PBS instead.

from Dreamwidth, because two posts of the same text are twice as nice