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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

In My 22 years....


This post marks the 100th post of my blogging "career."

Tomorrow, I am turning another year older and hopefully another year wiser. On this last eve of enjoying my 22-year-old self, I wonder that if I ever had a moment to travel back in time and offer a word of advice or a note to my younger and naive counterpart.......I would say:


  • Learn a musical instrument
  • Take better care in learning and appreciating French and Latin. 
  • Be a better English student. 
  • Play in the strategic position of "Forward" or "Striker" in soccer.
  •  Write sooner. 
  • Do not let anyone anyone influence the decision(s) you make because of a heartthrob.
  • Do not fall in the wrong crowd, because you want to "fit in" with your peers. 
  • Be proud of who you are. 
  • Love the name your parents gave you.
  • Listen to new music other than the popular tunes you hear on the radio.
  •  Don't let other people's opinions or criticisms downgrade your spirit and zest for life. Take all with a grain of salt, acknowledge the ones that will make you better and let the rest role off your back, like water droplets on a duck's wing.  
  •  Count your friends- You know who your real friends are. 
  • Express yourself. Words are a gift to others, as well as feelings.
  • Enjoy every day as it comes. 
  • Be patient- it will happen when it will happen. 
  • Being a grown-up is not what it's made out to be- adjust to it.
  • Have a diverse group of friends, but be careful who you admire.  
  • Jobs should make you happy and add definition and fulfillment to your life. 
  • Some people are noble and have integrity; others are two-faced and shifty.

Monday, October 20, 2014

New Layout and Design+The Bane of Parkies

I've rearranged the design of my blog-once again. I don't know how I can ever keep it on just one theme. Anyway, I've changed the title of my blog. From Aspenglow to Wandering Reflections.
 I could just become a "Parkie" and travel to other National Parks or resorts and work at these places, never settling down and never being stable, always having a "survival mindset".
My new blog title would surely fit this experience.

 My rather curious friend of a Frenchman, once told me, "Screw being stable, you can be stable later in life." He didn't actually use the word "screw", but because I wish to maintain a blog rating of G or even PG-13, I elected to leave his more accurate description out of this post.
First of all, we have to define "Stable". It means to be constant, consistent, firm, steadfast, even-keeled, tough, or even well-balanced. Why would anyone question the decision to be stable? What is being stable in life really mean? Does it mean the hampering of freedom and expression-or the ability "to come and go like the Seasons?" Or does it mean remaining constant in one's responsibilities, job, relationships, and living? Regarding the latter point, some consider this type of "stability" to be a bore. Is it a personality or intellectual flaw, a changed notion on living, or is it something else that spurns some to think this radical?  Does not being stable mean that they're more mature and whatnot? Perhaps my readers can help shed some light on this quandary.
I have friends and acquaintances who like to make good money, travel, soak up every cultural thing there is in the world and I think, remain uninhibited by Life's ultimate responsibility of growing up.
I think those who hop from state-to-state and switch jobs every 6-9 months aren't really responsible or even have the maturity to settle down and deal with Life, in the true sense of the phrase. Maybe they do, maybe they don't. I could be right, but then again, what do I know of such things, after all, I am a "baby" as some older people would say as a counter statement.

OR, I could break the mold of the status quo and take the time to discern what God is calling me to do, and take my time with making an employment decision. I just wish He would lay out His cards for me right now. God has a knack at letting me wonder to the point of doubt and confusion, and then back to wondering and never doing. The circle never ends.
If I begin another job right now, I would have no time for ample self-reflection and decompression. I actually would be working another job right now if I hadn't taken a step back to think and ponder, and think some more, aside from peer-pressure to be "busy" with an another adventure.(?) Sometimes being busy is counterproductive.

Like +Ashley Wied said in her comment (I hope she doesn't mind being put on the spot) in the previous post, there are in fact many leaves strewn about. The path I am on seems to be more of a rough hiking trail, it wouldn't be so bad if there weren't so many wet and slick leaves on it.

That brings me to an another point. I hope my readers take the time and enjoy this beautiful Autumn right now.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

~Summer Highlights~

 Here are some pictures detailing my summer in a scroll or less.


Hike on Garfield Peak- June.


May.

This year's Survivor Party was the ultimate Survivor Party!

Last breakfast before Annie Creek shutdown for the winter.

Mattheus and me went bowling. So much fun, but we're both out of practice.

Enjoying some beer at Running Y Ranch after our bicycle tour.

Ah, Toketee Falls.

Scaled Mt. Scott twice this season. View of Klamath Basin.

Last hike upon my favorite, Garfield Peak.












Mattheus and his salads.


Sample platter of Standing Stone Brewery beers.



This was taken before work one time.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Changing of the Seasons

It is now fall or autumn here in Southern Oregon, and it is very pretty. The colors of the trees, sunsets, swirling leaves, and nature getting ready for winter, offers me some temporary respite and decompression from stress at work and in my personal life.

This journey for me, which includes realization of many different aspects of myself and of the world, is partly related to the Pilgrimage and the tantalizing workplace drama, which seems to have dominate and perpetuate throughout the season. This season and this year, in all of its tomfoolery-ish annoyance and seemingly grandeur facade, is autonomous to a Shakespearean play.
You have your protagonists, antagonists, themes, conflicts, symbolism, and minor characters that all somehow add definition to your story. There are character die-offs that translate to firings and or quitting/s. The climax of a story is best related to those daunting days in August when all seemed hopelessly lost.The resolution of the story is a two-edged sword- you don't really know what happens in the end, but 'il est fini', or consummatum est.You also have twists in the story, that catches the reader or observer unawares.
Shakespeare had it right then.
I have learned what friends are and what friends aren't. Cathy has been with me since the beginning. We have been through feast and famine and thick and thin over the course of this season. You are an amazing person Cathy! I love your determination, sensibility, inquisitive and caring nature. You have helped me to carry on at work, even more so recently. I can be an intense, emotional, reserved person, hard to read at times and yet, you have been very patient and tolerant with me. I have a hard time showing gratitude and appreciation, but I want you to know, that I will always be your friend. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

........

I didn't really pass my vocational schooling, but am still considered a "graduate".  I don't regret the time spent in studying Medical Transcription, even though I realized much later on I didn't want to do it. I learned a lot and even though it took a little longer than most, I am impressed with the fact that I persevered and had determination to finish it. Even more so, I was able to go to France and attend a Pilgrimage all by myself, away from my safe-havens. If I set my mind to something, I can do things. I am a tenacious, stubborn, determined, honest and dependable over-achiever.
Now, as I look back from this present time to several years ago, everything seems to have fit together like it was a puzzle. Everything happens for a reason, known only to God. 
As Isaiah 55:9 states:
 " 'For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
            Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the LORD.
      9“For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
            So are My ways higher than your ways
            And My thoughts than your thoughts.' "

At this stage in my life, it is one of frustration. I am discerning a religious vocation. There, I admitted it, I am discerning a religious vocation. I don't expect everyone to like this idea. In fact, I expect no one too. Religious life has obtained somewhat of a mysterious and repulsive rap to it. I used to be repulsed by it. I used to fear it. I just didn't understand it then. It's not conclusive yet that my vocation is a religious one, but I am sincerely taking an effort in discerning it and opening myself up to other possibilities. 
I am coming to terms that I probably am not going to be settled down by age 25, have a lucrative career, a satisfying relationship and a fancy car. This is what the world expects of me, but it is not what I or maybe even God really wants. The discernment continues during the changing of my seasons.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

O Sacrament Most Holy +

Let us all do some act of reparation for the Satanic mass that is being held in Oklahoma today.
 

O SACRAMENT MOST HOLY
O SACRAMENT DIVINE
ALL PRAISE AND ALL THANKSGIVING
BE EVERY MOMENT THINE

 






Friday, September 5, 2014

Nameless Shall This Be

This post will remain nameless, because I haven't gotten my mind to think up one. I could blog about James Foley's death, which remains as a reminder for us Catholics and of our Catholic duty. Or, I could rant about our Leader's ineptness in dealing with foreign policy and the tinder box of the M.E. I could even be so superficial that I could talk about the latest products I use and the things I recommend vs. not recommending. SO genuine, huh?! I have ranted about Popular Culture, Church affairs, politics, and talked about some personal dealings.
Blogs have a way of inspiring the un-inspirational, and today, I guess I'll attempt to enumerate my feelings in the most radical post of late.This is a long-time in coming and my feelings and thoughts cannot be held back. Enough with the pleasantries. The waterfall has breached so to speak.


Lately, and I say lately, as in the last several months, I've been disliking being around people and dealing with the world in general. I guess being in customer service and Hospitality tends to do that at some point in one's job life, but this is entirely different. I'll be pretty personal right now and frankly, I don't care what others think about this. This is my blog and if the NSA wants to read this, they can too!
Most of my interior conflicts began right after my Pilgrimage. Now, I don't want to give the impression I am dissing my most memorable and greatest achievement of a lifetime. I had wished that the leaders of our Pilgrimage group mention at least something about dealing with the after-effects of a pilgrimage and what to look for, but they didn't. I am still a little resentful towards this fact. It took a priest-friend of another sort to warn me why the Devil would do such a thing to try and ruin this best time of my life and has he certainly tried!


I am having a seemingly most difficult time of my life right now and I feel writing about it helps a little. Co-workers, friends and family are telling me I am disconnected from them. One person even went so far to tell me that I seem "lost". I didn't know I was being disconnected, or ignoring? I offer a sincere apology to everyone for how I treated them in the past and I'll offer a pre-apology for those times, if they happen in the future. I don't why I feel this different. I am always trying to be happy and chipper, if not for myself, but for the people I am around with. Apparently, some can see right through this facade.Work has been crazy weird and I feel that this is part of my closure off to people and to things. I am discontented with the way I feel. The world is very crazy and insane. People are selfish, prideful, arrogant, greedy, immoral and ignorant. My annoyances can go on and on.
I am beginning to dislike people and the most importantly the world, in general. I am in unrest, confused, in a lost-sort of frame of mind. I am not crazy, I assure you! Being in Hospitality where you can see and deal with all types of people, cultures, personalities, and whatnot gives the observer a prime view of human nature and people. I tell you human nature is the worst intangible thing there is, after evil, but evil and human nature are intertwined and they go back since the Creation. I really think, my Pilgrimage and my Catholicism are affecting this view point. I feel as if I am against the world, like St. Athanasius was.
I noticed that as part of the tantalizing effects after my Pilgrimage, people saw me differently. Of course, they knew I went on one, and I didn't hold back when they asked me about it. Some people have become antagonistic towards me, where as before they weren't and of course the usual anti-Christian/Catholic sentiments. The latter has always been there, but it seems to have intensified since I've been back. This isn't really new information, because being Catholic in today's world will automatically make non-Catholics hateful and antagonistic towards the believer, if the believer hasn't done anything to provoke this.

This comes with the territory of being a Catholic. In knowing that what I believe makes people so uncomfortable, it gives me a smidgen of comfort to know, first hand, that Catholicism is the True and Only religion amongst so much moral and religious relativism and subjectivism prevalent in the world today-not to mention the immorality and loose speech!
Some people, whom I have known for a long time, have hurt my naive heart, even though we are still somewhat polite and friendly towards one another. I wonder if these friendships are tied to the seasons?


I still say my Rosary, even though sometimes it is very hard to pray. Right now, to pray is an act of the will for me, it used to be out of habit or sentiment, not anymore. I tend to think it is better when one has to consciously think to pray than out of merely habit or past-time. For me, being Catholic in today's world should not simply be out of habit, or out of ease. Being Catholic should be the act of the WILL! Because if we love and want to follow God, then it should show in our will, but is it so ever hard!


Maybe I am having hard time balancing my work, life and my spiritual life? I am annoyed that I am not spending as much time with my spiritual life as I should be. Maybe this is all part of the after effects of my intense pilgrimage? Maybe this is all a prelude to some important self-discovery? Maybe I am just being too sensitive? Maybe I am just hormonal and these problems are just a figment of my imagination? Maybe I am being a lukewarm Catholic, who needs a spiritual-kick-in-the-pants?

This year is certainly a different one, one that is full of change for me. I need a break from the world. I want solitude, peace and more importantly, time!

Please pray for me!