Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Ten Things on Tuesday

1. My eyes are worse this morning, which I would not have thought possible last night. My allergy appointment is at 10:30 and should be miserable. I've done allergy testing at least 3 times before. I am allergic to nearly everything. The most recent testing I was allergic to 74 out of 75 items; the only thing I wasn't allergic to was dogs.

2. I am allergic to horses, and I don't care.

3. Speaking of, we've now trapped something like 5 skunks from our barn. In the hope that this is all the skunks, I cleaned up the piles of skunk poop last night. Fingers crossed.

4. When I talked about mostly hating mission trips, I should have added that I don't hate medical mission trips--the ones where teams of physicians go to developing nations to either give medical care or train local physicians. Correct a child's clubfoot or cleft palate and you don't have to build a long-term relationship or understand her culture to have a profound influence on her life.

5. For all other forms of aid, however: listen first. I recently read about a community in African where several women prostitutes had been killed. What was the answer here? Better law enforcement? Job skills training, so the women could do something else? When asked, the women of the community said that what they needed was a way to keep elephants out of their fields. Elephants were trampling their crops, leaving them so destitute that they resorted to prostitution to feed their children. Accordingly, an aid group raised money to buy fencing materials, and the women themselves built the elephant-proof fence.

6. Back when, I promised to give away my copy of Interrupted to one of the people who left comments on that post. I used a Random Number Generator set between 1 and 4, and the winner is Diane! This amuses me greatly, both because I know her and because her comment was, "Why don't I just borrow the book?" I'll give it to her and she can pass it on however she chooses.

7. I am finally making progress on my to-do list. The freezer has been moved to the basement and the ironing is done (it tells you a lot about my life that after 3 months of no ironing my ironing pile consisted of a few random linen towels, one blouse, and my good napkins). Also, the clipper cord has been replaced, by the same man who sharpens my clipper blades. His name--I'm pretty sure he's making it up--is Will Sharpen, and he does a mail-order clipper repair business worldwide, but also lives about 5 miles from me, so yesterday he showed up in his truck and fixed everything. This means I have functional clippers several weeks before I need to clip the horses, which is amazing. I've also gotten 5 of the 7 horse blankets laundered, just waiting for sunny weather to do the other two.

8. I feel amazing.

9. Except for the eyes.

10. To round out this list, I offer you another quote from the back of my novel, The War That Saved My Life.  This one comes from Karen Cushman. (Get out of town! But it's true.) "You are about to read an astounding novel. I was gobsmacked. Will you cry and rejoice and hold your breath? Absolutely. Will you find the book as exciting, touching, wise, and profound as I did? Yes. Remarkable achievement, Kimberly Brubaker Bradley. Thank you." (Note: it doesn't get any better than that.)