A Tendency to Blame

34_Blame_4-11-18The call comes from my veterinarian at 4, saying my cat’s 5:30 appointment has to be changed. The vet needs to leave and there is no one who can fill her spot. Will Friday at 5:30 work?

There is nothing on my calendar Friday at 5:30. But that doesn’t matter. The Judge does not like that I’m being asked to rearrange my schedule; something “could” come up.  Someone is at fault that my appointment must be changed, and since I properly booked the appointment, the fault must lie outside of me.

Continue reading “A Tendency to Blame”

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Which Character is Gonna Appear?

12_Which CharacterDriving the country roads of Sonoma County is a joy, regardless of the weather. It calls to me, and the mystery of a shrouded day brings particular pleasure. On one recent outing, the clouds were low in the sky, some stuck on the treetops. The road was damp; it meandered. Trees curved over it like a cathedral ceiling. The autumn leaves had succumbed to the winds and to age and were scattered along the roadside and in the woods.

A dirt road—likely a driveway—appeared on my left, curving like a shadowy “S” away from the main road, before disappearing into the woods. I glanced over and noticed an old, large oak had fallen across the drive, blocking access.

My first thought was that life can block our way, as quickly and solidly as that tree blocked the drive, preventing any car from passing by as long as the tree was there.

How we respond to those moments fascinates me.

My own response falls into two parts. One involves practical, “external-landscape” factors; the other involves more emotional, “inner-landscape” factors.

Continue reading “Which Character is Gonna Appear?”