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April 07, 2003: Rising

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My older sister called last night, and we talked for a while. She let me unload on her, and she sympathized. I know I'm not the only one who's felt this isolated, but still, sometime it's nice to have that validation in person. I also know that, logically, the ability to find new friends remains throughout life. It's just that sometimes, especially when I am feeling so low, I feel as if it all just passed me by. Your emails and comments are very much appreciated and I thank all of you who sent them. I needed the gentle reminders that things are never as bleak as they might seem.

In the background, near the end of the conversation, I could hear my youngest nephew singing. He loves the Veggie Tales videos, so he was singing, "Oh Where is My Hairbrush". Except that he substitutes "baby" for "hairbrush" since he has a little doll (whose name is Baby) that he carries around with him pretty much everywhere. In fact he gets a little upset if he can't find it. Are all his female relatives taking pictures and recording this little quirk of his faithfully for the future? You bet we are! Call it potential blackmail material for when he's a teenager and mouthing off at his mother, or desperate to impress a girlfriend.

The sun came out today and the weather was so nice I decided to go for a walk during lunch. There is a little office park across the street from where I work and it has an area that is ringed by bike paths and includes little cement benches and lots of trees. I walked around the perimeter, startling more than a few squirrels. Some of them fussed at me while the rest simply froze on their trees and tried very hard to pretend I didn't exist.

This evening, while chopping up vegetables for soup, my mom called from the hospital where she works.

"There's a new church in Vacaville," she told me. "We need to go and worship there. All the nurses agree."

At first I thought she was joking, but then when she told me the name of the new 'church', I promptly agreed. After all, no self-respecting ice cream addict would *ever* forgo a chance to pray at the alter of Coldstone Creamery.

********

This weekend I was awoken early one morning by an odd sound. At first I thought that perhaps someone was simply dragging their garbage can back in from the curb, but when it came again, a little while later, I finally got out of bed to investigate.

There is a black and white dog of indeterminate shepherd mix that lives a few houses down from us. I see him walking with his people occasionally, and every once in a long while he gets out of his yard and goes wandering around looking for something exciting to do.

When I looked out my window I saw him, standing splay-legged in the neighbor's driveway with the source of the noise. Somehow, this dog had found himself a large white bucket, and the noise would come when he would pounce on the bucket, causing it to roll across the cement. As it rolled he would wag his tail excitedly and cock his head to one side to watch its progress, and then once it stopped moving, he would promptly repeat the process.

I thought briefly of going outside to return him to his yard. But then I decided against it. It's a quiet little dead-end street where I live so there is no worry about traffic for him. He has always returned himself to his yard when he is done playing before. And perhaps most importantly of all, it was obvious even from my second story window that he was enjoying himself immensely. I didn't have the heart to go outside and spoil the fun.

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