Greetings from the tower…

It is certainly warm tonight. Something they didn’t mention in all those shows about castles is that tower rooms can be very, very warm. I guess in the old days, towers weren’t really built for comfort purposes but rather to give a view over the land, a defense post or a place to house your irritating relative, neighbor or treasonous high born conspirator. My tower room has three levels, an entry with the bathroom, a middle floor (where I am now) that is a sweet and spacious living area and the top floor where eventually I will sleep. The top is quite literally under the eaves of the tower, you can only stand up very straight in the middle of the room. I have windows everywhere and I can see the countryside for miles. And there are no bugs, rats, molding bones or other things to take away from the experience. I had booked this stay because I wanted to surprise my original traveling companion with an experience that you couldn’t really replicate in the US. I did on their behalf and I probably would not have done it on my own. However, being here and having so much fun with this has taught me a good lesson about doing things for yourself too, and not just to surprise other people. I am pretty good at arranging fun things for other people and not so good about doing it just for myself. I am learning though and this was an important training exercise 😉

We are in the middle of a heat wave in the Netherlands. NO, I don’t mean it has reached 70 degrees and panicky Dutch people are fainting from the unexpected sun 😉 I mean that the past couple of days it has easily hit the 90 degree mark and doesn’t cool off much at night. There’s not alot of air conditioning here either, much like Seattle. We’ve had about a week of this kind of weather and it doesn’t show much sign of letting up. It makes me glad I let Robert convince me to fix Astrid’s air conditioning when he was renewing her interior. I remember laughing at the time that I would need air conditioning. Well, I used it today during the last 40 km to Maastricht when it just got to be too much! I expect I will be glad to have it when we are going to Italy in August too.

This weather makes you not want to eat and only drink. I can say that within the first 30 minutes that I was sitting outside this evening, writing away in my journal I drank an entire coffee milkshake (i thought iced coffee was Seattle style, it wasn’t) a liter bottle of mineral water and a very cold Brugse Zot beer. And I never had to pee, that’s how hot it was. That’s alot of liquid for you non liter using readers 😉 And right now, I am drinking another bottle of mineral water that I raided from the tower mini bar.

There are people here from all over the world to see Andre Rieu. I heard Australians tonight. I am looking forward to the concert tomorrow night. I have my portable Mom ash with me and will be bringing it and I have her serious camera so I can take good pictures. Oh, and the castle is for sale, which seems only fitting because as soon as I walked in the door, I heard Mom in my head saying her famous “I could live here”. Unfortunately, 2 million is a little out of my budget. Although I am sure they would be open to negotiation.

I had one of the greatest experiences this week. At work, we had an opportunity to spend 1:1 time with a young person who is what they call far from the work market. This means that they have a physical or mental condition or both that makes regular employment probably an incredibly long shot for them. I had a great afternoon working with an amazing young woman. She was 21 and has big plans. I worked with her to help prepare for the process of an interview, what to ask, what to expect, how to carry herself with confidence, to believe in herself. At the end of the day, we were not even done. I asked the organization to keep me posted and let them know that I am open to meeting with her again and helping her. I hope they will contact me. Her dream job means she will need to go to school and that’s not always easy to do if you don’t have people along the way encouraging you that you can do it, especially when your Statistics class SUCKS. We fit well together because I don’t have a traditional path to where I am now either. I didn’t get my bachelor’s until I was 36. I hope that we will be able to work together again.

Talking with her reminded me all over again of the importance of gratitude. I also just finished reading Amanda Palmer’s The Art of Asking (which was fabulous) and had the connection message jumping all over the place in my brain. I do have difficulty asking. Which is what made the book so interesting to reading. I don’t think I will become an expert in asking for help overnight. I do think I will ask for it more often though. So if I ask for you something, let me stumble my way through it, because the trust it requires for me to do it is something that I want to recognize and cultivate.

We had a vet visit this week for Moortje. I am pleased to report that the medication to lower his blood pressure is working very well. He’s down to 130. He was at 240 which was NOT good. It is nice to know that even if my cats run away from me because they do not want to get their medication twice a day, it is helping. Now if I could only get them to understand that. Henry went with to get his nails trimmed which he absolutely fought. The vet and I were both wrestling with him to get it to happen. This is the vet that works with the lions in the Amsterdam zoo. Henry wasn’t impressed. However, he is walking much faster since it happened. Sometimes I wish I could speak to the pets in a language they would understand.

Wow, it is 1130 pm nearly. I guess I better get some sleep if I plan on exploring tomorrow before it becomes wickedly hot. The forecast is for 93 by noon. Oy.

Hey, thanks for reading, by the way. It means alot to me that you do.

2 thoughts on “Greetings from the tower…

  1. Love reading about your adventures! Don’t stop writing. Where are the photos of the castle? Safe journeys –

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