Archive for July, 2010
“The worst of ME is known, thou knowest, my people knowest- but thine face is false thy face as well as thy heart” ( Maxwell Anderson Mary Queen of Scots ( Mary to Elizabeth)
My son set me up a facebook page a couple of years ago. Why? I have no idea. I would from time to time get people wanting to be my friend but since mostly they went to spam I didn’t bother to follow through, actually my “friends” know exactly where to reach me and if they want to know how I am or have something to share they can come to this blog.
I don’t twit , sorry tweet,
I leave that to the twit(ters) or the birds at 4 o’clock in the morning. I find it bad enough keeping up with 6 different email accounts, a website and this blog.
Since a lot of life and losing of life got in the way in the ensuing months I never really paid attention to the facebook account or those messages of friending.
However, after Chris died I was receiving a lot of messages on the “page of the face” . I accessed the account and clicked on some of those messages that came through on a wall……
writing on a wall?????—-hmmmm well that could segue into a philosophical debate or graffiti gurus unleashed.
CRASH!!!!!!!! and Yahoo was compromised. I received a virus ( a fake face book message) that came through on one of my yahoo accounts which I naively opened.
This virus then inserted itself as a nice little “OK’d ” file in my computer so wasn’t recognized as I had apparently allowed and OK’d this file SIGH….
but who is to tell whether a friend is “fake”? especially if you are the type to take things at “face value”
Angela Lombardi ( ritchey) by CHRIS RITCHEY
I have enough trouble with “fakers of face” in my real world let alone the cyber world – real people who I thought I knew can be their own kind of virus.
My lovely Trend Micro took care of the insidious virus after I had to hijack my files. (Pity they can’t do the same with people virus)
Still I persevered with the “page of face.” And yes! – lesson NOT learned -a couple of months later I was hit again and once more hijacked and cleaned. Now this all takes time out of my day and causes much frustration. On the “face” of it it is just not worth it!
So to all my “friends” who know my face well , please don’t think me unkind for not replying to your offers of friendship on a “page of face”.
You see my world is crappy enough without having to decide on the web who is real and not real and what face they really wear.
My “friends ” already know where to reach me !
And it seems friends or not according to the BBC they would also know 100 million of you too
Details of 100m Facebook users collected and published
Apparently my Nag Nog taught my mummy and loads of other kids to swim in “Kuncle’s” pool. And since it is really really really hot I have been taking a plunge ( special diapers and all)
She was a Red Cross swim instructor a long time ago , probably looked a lot better in her bathing suit then too!
Nag Nog says that since we live by a lake and have a pool that I have to know what to do if I fall in. She also says that it isn’t just about swimming from one end of the pool to the other and that swimming in the lake is different from swimming in a pool.
There are currents and waves ( well Nag Nog knows how to make waves I have heard)
Now it is my turn only I think she is a little crazy.
I thought I would doggy paddle, and Tetley could help me but no I am not allowed to learn the doggy paddle-
Bummer Tetley !!!
or the crawl ( hey I passed the crawl a couple of months ago – I already know how to crawl)
I am sure ‘Kunckle” has a bubble maker – I don’t need to get in the water to blow bubbles
There will be no shutting her up if I ignore her ( you all know that – even the Pope knows that 😉
Here I come Mum!!!!
I have to wear a life jacket out of the pool but I get this swim aid and at least three lifeguards ( mummy , Nag Nog and Poo Bah) watching my every move in the pool. I am not sure about this swim aid- the blue is OK! but do they think pink is my colour?
Next apparently I have to learn how to kick- ha! I was kicking in the womb, don’t they know that?
I heard them saying the first thing is treading water– well I am good at walking now and I am pretty good in the tread dept. but on water- beyond ME at the moment
But I guess I will be getting a jelly fish float after I can do that , so maybe something to look forward to. Wonder if it will go with the turtle I won at Cedar Point!
The jellyfish float is also known as the survival float. The survival float is used to conserve energy when you are in trouble in the water, or waiting to be rescued.
1. Take a deep breath
2. Put your face in the water and exhale, let your arms and legs hang freely and rest in this position for a few seconds.*
3. To take another breath, slowly lift the arms to about shoulder height and move the arms forward. Separate the legs, moving one leg forward and the other back.
4. Gently press down with the arms while bringing the legs together. This movement lifts the mouth out of the water and now you can take another breath.
5. Return to the resting position and repeat the steps to continue breathing and resting.
SOURCE ( ED note please check out Leonnie Isaacs poem that goes with this artwork.
In the Don’t Ask- Don’t Tell- Don’t Ignore post and answer to
How are you ?
Most days I try to get through but then there are days that I am not sure I will make it through
There are no good days , at least I haven’t found any as yet, but there are people amateur and professional that have tried to give me a good day or at least move on. We have, as a family, had loads of advice. There is always a question I ask to those of the professional kind.
Have you lost a child, a son
Did you watch your child die -take his/her last breath -watch as their heart stopped- did you scream silently for them to hold on, not to die , even though you were the one that had to make the decision to let them go?
Do you know what it is like to relive that moment every time you close your eyes?
NO???? Ok! then well sorry but unless you have lived that you cannot possibly , even though you have years worth of “academic knowledge” help me because you cannot relate.
This is like nothing I have ever known- I have no words that adequately describe what is happening to me .
One Dr. (a lovely person) who is childless, told me
I smiled, thanked them for the advice and came home.
Take down from your house all photos, reminders of Chris put them away out of sight. Put the things that are most meaningful to you in a drawer and leave them there then when you want to remember go to the drawer relive your memories you get them out and then shut them away again.
As I walked up the path to the front door, through the wrought iron gate Chris had helped me choose and put up , to the pair of lions that flank the steps I once again saw the chip on the nose where a naughty little boy had tried to change the shape of the lion’s nose, still visible .
The front door where the welcome bells ( a mother’s day gift) scratch the wood- And I hadn’t even made it into the hallway where a little brass lion sits , a
I am sorry for defacing the lion
There are hundreds of reminders in this house, gifts, photos, artwork. I checked there isn’t one room including bathrooms-( candles too pretty to burn) ) not one wall that doesn’t hold some reminder of the baby, toddler, child, teenager, and young man who called this house home 27 years.
I wandered from room to room -I would need a storage unit, I haven’t even touched on the attic and basement. And then what would I keep in that drawer?
As I wandered realizing the daunting task that was ahead of me, the bricks on the fireplace caught my eye –
Yes the day of the “lion’s nose” had also found him trying to leave his name on the mortar of he brick, it is still there – first left as reminder to him NOT to do such a thing again, then forgotten with a “I must get to that” and now evidence that the child existed at all.
Which drawer? Would I choose the one where resides an envelope with a nugget of coal and some pencil flowers? Another I am sorry gift made for me after he had been particularly naughty. The homemade flowers delivered by dirty chubby hands looking for a softening of his mothers face, which he didn’t get until he handed her an envelope saying “if these don’t warm your heart ( the flowers )maybe this will” as the nugget of coal fell onto a white rug- but my heart was warmed and the smile and forgiveness followed.
In my world the scenes of “past life’ are so real , the colours, the voices, even those terrible last months and days, are with me – We all know about split personalities , various people living in one body/ brain.
I experience split lives, going through the motions of the present, simultaneously living the past- as it comes unbidden to the fore.
I can see the toddler as he stood at the top of stairs after finding out he could get out of his crib. I see him on the kitchen floor when, at two in the morning, he had decided he wanted more of the chocolate cake , this little boy cross-legged face full of cake looking innocently up from the mess he had made
The archway into the dining room where he would jump up and hit it as he grew leaving handprints on the off white wall. The dining room floor he helped me refinish whilst his dad was away just a 4 years ago. Even the damned ivy that is growing over the windows once again, he was supposed to cut it back for me. As it grows, it is a constant reminder of his not being here.
I sat on the couch where he had sat dazed and afraid ( although he tried not to show it) the day the Drs. told him you have cancer.
“Dad come up and kiss me goodnight”- Mum I need a drink., How come Nikki isn’t in bed?
Children’s laughter as they tore through the house playing their games. The bedroom ceiling fan he chose. The fish ,frogs and even Misty which drawer do they go in ? Which reminders are not as important as others?
Do I move out the house altogether? I see him in the street signs , I see him at Settlers’ Watch , I see him playing over at Irving , the baseballs and soccer balls lost on the roof, the broken window ( they never fixed just boarded over) all those years ago.
I see him on the storefront windows, on television, his ads, his design on signage in Cleveland. I am reminded every time I see a soccer ball, a Nike commercial, Adidas,
everytime I vacuum I look at his logo on the machine. I see him in my daughter’s eyes, in her smile – my grandson’s hands . The very sign on our street designed by my son.
No there isn’t a drawer that can contain and lock away my heart memories,
Photo Mark Teleha -artwork Chris Ritchey
there isn’t a storage shed anywhere in the world large enough to lock away and hold those memories.
My parallel world of the past cannot and will not allow confinement .
There truly are days that I wonder if I will make it through until tomorrow but I suppose the day I don’t is the day the heart memories and echoes will no longer cause the smiles, the wishing, the whying and nights of crying .
“In search of my son- in search of me.”
Part One – In search of my son- In search of me
Part Two – Tourjours Moi-Always Me
Part Three – Always Me – Always Chris
Part Four – In search of My Son-
Chris Ritchey – Thanks
Part Five – Dark Humour- Shedding a Light
Part Six – The Unfinished Portrait
Part Seven– The Unfinished Portrait- The Artists
(2) Part Two – Who Are We Really?
Part Eight– When Premonition Becomes Hindsight
Part Nine– When Premonition Becomes Hindsight – Part Two
Part Ten (a) – There is an “I” in Death
Part Ten (b)- I didn’t know my son- Chris Ritchey
Part Eleven- Unfinished Portrait the Artistic Gene
Part Twelve- Unfinished Portrait- the Artistic Gene- Part Two
I had the privilege and honor of being asked to accompany the crew of the Neah Bay on their journey from Cleveland to Lorain for the Port Fest.
I was greeted by a very courteous crew member and found my way onboard. My first impression of the ship was what tight quarters and how “solid” it was. This was an “Industrial Strength” ship. I’ve been on the Jet Express and it was built as a pleasure craft, this Ice Cutter Tugboat was built for power.
To get to the different levels of the ship I had to manage ladders, not steps, these were very vertical. I’m not sure of all the technical names for different areas on the ship but I searched every little nook and cranny except for the “basement”, there was no way I’d make it down and back up again, but I could hear the engine and watched my bottle of water drop off a table due to the vibration while at the stern of the ship.
I told the Lt. Commander, if we were able to bottle the feeling of cruising on the water, wind in your face, perfect temperature, beautiful surroundings, we’d be millionaires.
I introduced myself to several crew and officers. I was very struck by their good nature, politeness and knowledge. You couldn’t pick better PR for the military. I found they came from Rochester, NY, San Francisco, San Diego, South Dakota and even Steubenville, OH.
Saturday morning I ran down to the ship to take pictures for my Editor (That Woman) for her afternoon edition. While standing next to the Neah Bay cars were driving by to take a look. One car stopped and two gentlemen and a woman stopped to talk. They were both ex Navy and Lt. Commander Woityra came ashore, shook their hand and answered questions. There was some reminiscing and promises to come back later for the tour.
When I returned home to download my pictures for the Editor, I thought back at just how touching all this is. Do we realize how much the Coast Guard really does for us? They protect our borders every day, here on our land. They save millions of dollars, if not BILLIONS by preventing flooding during the winter months with their Ice Cutters. They save lives, remind us to be safe on the water, rescue individuals (on boats, ice flows etc).
I was a little jealous, cruise on the water for a job…. I could live like that and then I remembered the other side of the Coast Guard, those that have been deployed overseas; away from family for months on end.
Please join me in thanking all that serve and protect.
The other day I received a comment (ah! those comments) of course from a “nom de plume” from the Indiana State Dept of Education server. He/she/it basically took me to task for blaming my troubles ( re the loss of closure and the legal “cremainsnapping of our son” ) on the “institution” of the Roman Catholic Church .I tested the email it came back false so I didn’t bother to approve the comment.
I didn’t blame the“institution” of the Roman Catholic Church just some of the “holier than thou types that profess to be believers,
and how the enabling of the actions of the few?? by employees of the “institution” has effected my little part of the world.
WHY shouldn’t I hold the “employer responsible for the action of the employees, whether it is the business of religion or oil?
I have been very disappointed in the actions of Bishops , priests and parishioners and also of BP! Although a multi national corporation , I would have hoped that as once the B stood for British I held them to a higher standard. Sorry BP, but there you have it. You have let the side down!
And now I am reading :
Al-Megrahi, 57, is the only person convicted of carrying out the 1988 bombing of a U.S. airliner over Lockerbie, Scotland, that killed 270 people.
He was released on compassionate grounds by the Scottish government after doctors said he was likely just months from death. Nearly a year later, he remains alive.
BP signed a $900 million exploration agreement with Libya in May 2007, the same month that Britain and Libya signed an agreement that paved the way for al-Megrahi’s release from a Scottish prison.
BP has admitted that it lobbied the British government over a prisoner transfer deal with Libya in late 2007, but denied playing any role in the actual decision to release al-Megrahi nearly two years later.
Todays news has the headline”
BP admits ‘lobbying UK over Libya prisoner transfer scheme but not Lockerbie bomber’
BUT WHY ARE YOU GETTING INVOLVED IN PRISONER NEGOTIATIONS ANYWAY?
IS THIS WHAT BIG BUSINESS AND THE NEED FOR OIL HAS COME DOWN TO?
IT IS DISGRACEFUL!
WHICH COMPANY GETS THE EDGE? IS IT THE ONE WHO CAN CIRCUMVENT CIVILIZED BEHAVIOUR THE BEST?
BP let me tell you a bit about that tragic day and how it touched this little family in Lorain ,Ohio. I was so worried, incredulous and bloody scared at the time but I would never have thought that 20 years later I would still be feeling anger but at a “corporation”
Granted it was nothing compared to the horrific happenings that devastated a community and many many families, we were also due to fly out of the USA a few hours after the disaster to London for Christmas that December 1988.
We went to the airport with mixed feelings. The children Nikki 12 and Chris 8 were terrified that they would be blown up. They looked suspiciously at every one as we boarded the big 747- just like the one that ended up blown out of the sky.
We arrived safely in London, the news was grim for those on the plane and the town of Lockerbie, Scotland
No we couldn’t get our money back just because we were uncomfortable with going and the State Dept said Morocco was OK.
We were booked into a French Hotel, since I spoke a little French I did all the talking. The Americans in our party were told to shut up and look German ( the Arab population had an affinity for the Germans). Being an American that week was not a popular thing to be , as evidenced by the conversations at the surrounding dinner tables, being English was only slightly better. Luckily my two blonde children were thought to be German. I think the fact my husband had a sort of tweed Tyrol hat on most days and was carrying around the book he was reading that had to do with Germany in World War Two and had a swastika on the front endeared him to the staff. All I know was that he never paid for a beer the wholetime he had that book.
We did not go out of the hotel unless escorted by our private guides. It was the most awful tense and stressful time as far as traveling I have ever been through. And I have been through some Vacations from Hell that could fill the pages of Horror Tales of Travel Abroad.
I will write more about the “road to Morocco” in a future post.
However, once again an “institution” or corporation out of greed possibly or not having a real plan of action has effected the lives in this country in the most disastrous fashion. And now they seemingly have the audacity and lacking any respect for those who lost their lives in 1988 allegedly petitioned a government to release the cause of so much horror and heartaches so they can pump more crude out of the ground. I hope this isn’t the case and there is still “British ideals” in BP