I was reminded today of how I used to have a chunk of charcoal in my water bottle. I haven’t thought much about that at all recently, (however, I might start doing it again) but apparently the lacrosse team I used to help coach thinks of it often.
First off, the charcoal in the water bottle is something I learned from Japan, though, via my brother before I moved there (and then it was emphasized while I lived there). It has to do with cleaning up the water, essentially, from what I recall. (Note: It is not drinking charcoal mixed with water. It is a stick of this specific charcoal that sits in the water bottle, so that its pores can absorb unwanted stuff from the water.)
Anyway, so I had this stick of charcoal in my water bottle. I carry my water bottle pretty much everywhere with me in life, so lacrosse practice was included back when I was coaching (and teaching). Apparently, one of the girls has held on to the fact that I had ‘some kind of rocks’ in my water bottle, though I have doubts as to whether she recalls what the ‘rocks’ actually were (the stick had broken in half, so there were actually two pieces in the bottle, instead of one, but they didn’t really look like rocks). In memory of my water bottle, in a sense, that particular girl regularly drops rocks into other people’s water bottles, telling them that it is healthy, and reminding them of how I did it.
Yes, my wonderful lifestyle rubs off in the best of ways. 😛 I guess it gives us a new meaning for ‘on the rocks’, now.
Today, I watched some mounted shooting. At this rodeo, anyway, mounted shooting means that an individual rides his or her horse across the arena, following a sort of zig-zagged pattern, and then back in a straight line, all while shooting, in a specific order, ten balloons that are placed around the arena. The average speed for doing this was 12-14 seconds. I’m not sure I could even have sprinted from one end of the arena to the other in that time, or even made all ten shots successfully while standing still in that time, and these people were riding all around it and back, knocking out balloons with their pistols along the way. Somehow, things like this make perfect sense to me, and I love watching them. It made me, even more than ever, want to ride horses every week in my life.
Though, I’m more of a Robinhood type, and so I would want to do mounted bow-and-arrow shooting, myself.
As I sit here, cringing at how people partner dance to this live country western music, I wonder what I must do that makes a master of that area of life cringe…
Tonight at the rodeo, during the invocation, I had a thought that surprised me. First off, I enjoyed the fact that a stadium full of people was taking a moment for prayer before beginning events of the evening…, even though it was not a religious event, or even religiously-officiated event. Second, I noticed how much I enjoyed the praying part myself as an individual and as part of the community. And thirdly, the thought which then occurred to me and surprised me most, I wondered if I might not want to be somehow involved in this kind of thing. Perhaps I really would love to be involved in cowboy-related stuff, country and ranch stuff. A visually beautiful place, filled with happy, animal-loving people, and where God is a happy place (as opposed to a sensitive or nonexistent one)…, now that would be nice. I, of course, do not at all know that I would enjoy such a setting. I think I fall under the common category of individuals who would be considered to be ‘liberal’, and that might not roll so well for me in the cowboy world. However, there’s a niche for everything, and it is certainly possible that I could slide in perfectly well in the ranching and rodeo world. Who knows, aside from God, anyway?
It’s just a thought I had, but I like the idea of considering it some more. 🙂
Tonight in the wine garden at the rodeo, we had a unique scene occur. I was standing in line for the toilets – a very long line that doubled in size just in the time I waited in it. I found myself wondering how the men’s toilets were. They were part of the same trailers as the women’s toilets. There was even a door on the inside that connected the men’s to the women’s toilets within a trailer. Well, two guys come waltzing out of the men’s toilets in the trailer next to ours, and declare ‘Hey, we’re unisex here; you can use these, ladies.’ A small, but somewhat mad dash ensues by ladies that had been a ways back in our line.
“They say that…” I begin, but end there, for my conflicting thoughts couldn’t agree upon an end to the sentence. It boiled down to the question of who would be liable for the issue of inappropriate bathroom use by the opposite gender – because I know that it is actually a thing – and the matter of 1) if anyone actually cared, and, if so, 2) who would be the one/s to correct/stop the behavior (aka enforce the gender rule of the toilets).
Sure enough, within moments after my statement, a grounds service person heads calmly up to the men’s bathroom and the line of ladies standing at it, and tells the ladies that they can’t use the men’s bathroom. By the time I was going into the trailer, – by the way, these are fancy trailers with flushing toilets and hand washing and even paper towels – the man had almost persuaded the likely drunk final three ladies from the men’s toilets. Though, I’m not sure he managed to get them out before they used the toilets. We could see straight into the men’s bathroom while the door was being held open, and it cracked me up, because there were two women standing in the walkway-type area of the trailer, next to the stalls, the worked outside the trailer, failing to convince them that it wasn’t okay for them to be in there, and a man’s head and cowboy hat 100% clear above one of the stall doors, while he clearly was using the toilet within the stall, but still chatting with the people outside of his stall, who were standing in the bathroom (i.e. the ladies), plus the man outside the trailer.
The whole thing just cracked me up.
Also, there were only two or three stalls (I think two) in the men’s section, whereas the women’s section had five stalls. I appreciated that fact.
Last June, I had a filling slip on one of my teeth. It didn’t slip far, but it slipped just enough that I had to have it replaced (although, I waited until November to do it). Upon my having it replaced, the dentist commented how I really shouldn’t get fillings done in France, then, since I had had the filling done in France. However, I had had the filling done in France, because the filling had popped out while flossing (while I was living in France), only three months after it had first gone in… in the USA. When the French replacement made its slight slip, it had done its duty of holding tight for over six years. Also, while living in Germany a few years later, the other filling that had been done at the same time as the one that had popped out in France, well, it popped out while I was flossing. So, I had to have both the US fillings replaced, because they came out while flossing.
Fast forward to now. On Friday evening, guess what happened. One of the fillings that was replaced, specifically the one that was replaced because it had chipped slightly (front tooth – it happens), though several years ago, well, it slipped! And when? While flossing. Now, here I am, barely three and a half months (if that) after having the filling inserted, and here in the US again, and the filling is falling out. I feel as though the dentist’s comment on France’s dental care was not only inaccurate a recommendation, but incorrectly directed. Clearly the fact that so many of my fillings from the US have gone so poorly in terms of lasting quality, could rather recommend that I not get fillings done in the US.
I think this is the main reason I really wanted to get out of the US as soon as possible this past fall – I want medical and dental care to be affordable for me again in life.
We went to an opera showcase tonight, and, as we commented on the style of box seats in the hall (or was it when I was listening to the host say something about Mozart?), I recalled the night I first saw “Die Zauberflöte” (“The Magic Flute”).
You see, it was a regular night in my life in Vienna, and I thought it would be nice to go see a show – that was kind of an incredibly easy thing to do while living there. I arrived to the theatre and purchased my ticket for the show using the fabulous discount that Austria offers to young adults and students, and headed toward the coat check. At this point, I recognized a friend of mine ahead of me, and called out his name. Apparently, we had both spontaneously decided to come to the show that night, and, with my having bought my ticket directly after he’d bought his, our seats were together. It was my first – and possibly only, actually – time in a box seat. The show was truly spectacular, and it was wonderful having someone to share the experience with me. When I later relayed the tale to my mom, we were utterly tickled by how crazy the whole thing was, especially with how snobby it could come across. ‘Oh, yes. I had spontaneously decided to attend an opera one night, ran into a friend upon arrival, and we enjoyed the wonderful show together from our box seats.’ 😛