Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Monday, April 18, 2011' snow, don't ya know?

Close to an inch fell while I was working, today, spread over the course of a few hours.  It's hard to believe there's still the ability for it to fall this late in the season, but I remember when I went to Yosemite in June (many MANY years ago) and found snow still on the ground.  It was so freaky.

I went with my folks just after graduating from college.  It was blistering hot when we left Texas (my father had a red and white 1975 Chrysler Cordoba with "fine Corinthian leather" seats and a so-so AC), and it stayed hot as we drove through New Mexico and Arizona...until we got up to Flagstaff, where it was nice and cool.  Then came my first trip to the Grand Canyon (warm), across the Hoover Dam (hot) and stopping at a Deli in Las Vegas (DAMNED hot).  I tried borscht for the first time, played the slots at Ceasar's and wound up leaving that town with $45 more than I'd started with (haven't done that since).  Then we trekked up to Yosemite (and nearly burned up the brakes on the car coming down the mountain) and stayed a night in San Francisco.  My first time there, too.  Driving down to LA, we took PCH as far as we could, stayed the night in LA and wound up driving to San Diego to visit my sister and brother.  It was nice.

I have the photos in one of my albums.  I should scan them, sometime, before they fade too badly.

I guess I'm remembering that trip of firsts because this is my first trip to Portland, and it's a city I'd always intended to visit, someday.  I'm told it's lovely and livable.

An online friend of mine has just decided it's time to begin AA classes.  I told him he's being strong, taking this path.  He doesn't really believe me.  But I've seen how hard it is for people in his situation and I can only wish him the best...but I've learned the hard way that this is a journey he has to walk on his own.  He has to determine the direction and he has to want to stick to it.  I will give him any support and reinforcement I can, but I will not push.  That doesn't work.

It amazes me how many people will force members of their family into rehab and attending AA meetings, thinking that will sober them up.  It won't.  Invariably those who are forced to get it through emotional blackmail or threats or legal action...will not stay clean.  Because deep down they really don't want it.  I've seen it proven over and over with family and friends, not to mention these celebrity junkies who get ordered by a judge to $1000 a minute clinics...and still wind up in a crash and burn.

But I think this guy does want it.  And I'm sending him all the positive thoughts I can.  He IS strong...because it takes a strong man to change his life, like this.  And if he wants to succeed, he will.

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