Hello and good day to you where ever in the world you are reading this. The past week kind of got away from me. It is July 8, 2021 and you have made it to see another day. I write that really to remind myself that “Yes, I have lived to see another day.” 30 years ago on July 24, 1991, my world changed forever. On that day, I had a stroke, CVA (cerebral vascular accident), bleed or what ever someone may call it. On that day, a weak vessel in my left ventricle, near the Circle of Willis sprung a leak. I would later find out that I had an arteriovenus almformation (AVM). I still remember the day it happened like a photograph, but most things after that, I have trouble with, probably why I repeat stories and look at pictures to keep the good memories from fading and never coming back. I think of this as I was complaining yesterday about my weight, the food I cannot eat right now and all the aches and pains that I have been experiencing due to the surgery for CES. Really though, I am ever so thankful for anything that I feel on any given day as I know that when I was discharged from the hospital in September 1991, I was sent home to be comfortable as that bad vessel was deemed inoperable and if left untreated I would have more strokes and possibly die. Anyhow, I have mentioned this in a previous blog about how thankful I was for the invention of the Gamma Knife by Dr. Lars Leksell as his invention gave me precious years that I was surely not sent home to see. It is easy to take for granted waking up so this is why I remind myself, daily. The past thirty years, though, have been wild, to say the least but thank you God, physicians and my family for getting me through that time. Wonder what the next thirty years will be like? Time for a little music break as I am feeling a little punky this morning.
I posted the above video, well because it is the Descendents and I love them!!! Oh sorry about that…that teenage, fan girl in me, you know. The drummer, Bill Stevenson, had a brain tumor removed and I just read that he also had open heart surgery in 2016. Dude, I feel you on that one. (I just had issues with my brain and the heart issue has resolved itself with rest and a change in diet. ) Anyhow, I love seeing stories like his as it makes me keep trying, even when I get unmotivated or in a rut. I remember seeing these guys (as ALL – ALLROY Saves Tour) back in 1993 at the Palladium with my boys father and then again in 2016 with my boys and Hubby. I was two years past my stroke and still learning to adapt to the new normals in my life – walking with a numb leg, speaking and using the right words, getting lost or scattered and never completing stuff, and a number of other things that people that have had CVAs understand. I bring this up because I was trading messages with a friend and she brought up that walking challenge and we decided to start our own, I guess not so much a challenge but a way to keep each other motivated as I know that having someone to check in with made it easier for me to stay on task. I was told to not strain my heart two months ago and now I have the green light to resume so I am looking forward to getting back into the my old routine of dancing in the morning. Thank you, Terrie, for motivating me!!
A few things happened in the week like, Fourth of July 2021. I do love fireworks, well, watching the professional shows. When the kids and I lived in the San Gabriel/Alhambra area, we used to watch the yearly fireworks show at Almansor Park. Those times were the best as I recall. Me, I usually worked during the day, mainly as it kept me away from holiday parties but I always made sure to watch the fireworks with the boys. This past 4th of July, Hubby and I watched the show that Agua Caliente put on. It was spectacular! This show lasted 30 entire minutes! I tried to capture the entire show but got tired and wind beat. Some of the wind gusts were strong enough to move me and shake the camera, even though the camera was attached to the stabilizer. I also tried taking some long exposure shots of the freeway while we were driving toward 1000 Palms. I turned the nob over to Manual and adjusted the shutter speed and such and shot when something caught my eye. I was not not looking for clear shots but shots of running lights.
I guess my medication helps with the ideas some times. The above photos remind of some nights when I was a drinker. Thank you God for getting me through that as well.
Here is the condensed version of the show. I trimmed it to around two minutes.
We found a great spot across the freeway from Agua Caliente Casino in Rancho Mirage. There were about 30 cars parked when we found a spot. Again, it was windy. Below are a few of the shots I took when I stopped recording video. It was warm that night and my Sony A7 started to overheat quickly.
I almost forgot, we got rain, well, a little bit of rain fell from the sky on morning of July 4th. Hubby was home that morning and we took a quick ride around the valley. I mentioned to Hubby during the beginning of the ride that I was looking for things to paint like the mountains in the landscape behind the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
The rain only lasted for a few minutes but the sky afterward was gorgeous and the air smelled so fresh. Fresh air is something I love and we don’t seem to get enough around here because of the smells that sometimes infiltrate the valley that come from the Salton Sea.
The last stop on our short drive was the Tennis Gardens. During tournaments and music festivals the green fields are covered in cars. I am planning on trying to recreate those mountains and want to study the shadowing.
Speaking of painting, I have been having fun with my new hobby. It was nice when Hubby asked me if he could hire me to paint a photo of his that was taken over twenty years ago. I happily said, “Of course!” He only wanted a small 4×6 canvas so I was able to get it finished in hours. Sometimes though, some of the paintings that I work on I start and then walk away from them like the one of the Pistol Annies that I have been working on for a few months.
Really though, I would never charge for creating a painting, just not my style, I think of things and projects like these as gifts from me to the subject. Besides, I don’t think they are anything special as I have seen some of the creations that my friends and family have done. However, if Hubby would like to pay me with a song or something that he creates then whoo-hoo! He has been helping me in my pursuit to play one song on the acoustic guitar. I must say that I have noticed the improvements that I have made. I will have to record myself again sometime. He said that when I decide to start focusing on the bass that it will be easier. I am looking forward to that next adventure.
Tonight is Thursday and I am hoping to go out tonight and see Sara Winchester as she will be back at the Lit Lounge tonight. A few years ago, many of my blog posts mentioned her as she has been so kind to me when she is performing here in the valley. She is a Los Angeles based musician. I can always count on smiling and singing along to the songs in her sets and she doesn’t mind if I take photos of her while she performs. However, I do not have permission from the hotel so taking photos in that place is out of the question. Also, when we were last at the casino, the security guard that I had a run in with followed me and Hubby around and made sure that I did not take any photos. I did use my cell phone but was told that I could never use it inside. Anyhow, it still upsets me because they often use my photos on their website. I am not upset because I get no credit or payment for those shots, no I get grief and made to feel uncomfortable when I just want to enjoy the music and to capture a few memories that I can relive again because sometimes with brain, it is like seeing things for the first time again. Below is a video that I shot one of the first times I saw her perform with the band Country Nation, I tell you, that band had such great chemistry.
If you are in town tonight or you live in the Coachella Valley and have been missing dancing and singing along to great music, do stop in to the Lit Lounge tonight to check out this performer. I am sure will be a sparkling ball of energy on this hot night. Fingers crossed that I make it out tonight.
Thank you dear reader for the visit. I hope you have a lovely day filled with joy and fresh air. Where ever you are going and where ever you are traveling, get there and safely. Hugs.