Saturday, July 22, 2017


A good--a great good--thing happened in the U.S. Capitol today, 7/26/2017. The Senate defeated a proposal to toss out a health care bill that would have left millions exposed to illness! 

"Happy Day! Happy Day! When Senators washed by doubts away." 

I never thought that would happen. 

Exhausted?  Despite good weather galore, free time, wonderful spouse and family, a community of fine neighbors, and even the defeat of the "Trash Obamacare" bill, I'm sure it's possible that you are.

Yes, it's possible! It;s inevitable, almost. It's happening to me, in fact. In my case, the cause is such disturbing American and international news. Every time I open the cell phone, the computer, or turn on the radio or TV I'm bombarded.  Bombarded with images of titans clashing, raucously tweeting, covering up the truth. 

A legitimate question for today: how to recover from exhaustion? 

First idea: get out of town; don't read the news while you're gone. Maybe get some perspective in nature.

Perspective in Nature: Eagle Cap Wilderness
 Photo copyright Darrell Reeck

That's what we did a week ago. Photo above: daughter Christina on a mountain peak above Lake Wallowa. Her two kids, my wife and I were with her.At this elevation you do get perspective: not only on the natural world around us, but also on society.

Second idea: enjoy the season. This week my wife canned apricots. She found the fresh fruit at a local farmer's market.

A Beautiful Clutch of Quarts of Apricots

Photo copyright Darrell Reeck

Third idea: look for and enjoy the unexpected. Little surprise gifts come along every day. Imagine this episode: at 6 a.m. Saturday morning, 7/22/2017, I opened the back door of the house to get some fresh morning air. That in itself brought a sense of relief.

Then the unexpected: I noticed a tiny 1" tree frog at eye level on the inside of the storm door screen. How did it get there? Can I photograph it, I wondered?

Below: an answer to the question. I did manage to get a photo or two. Then, within seconds the frog JUMPED five feet to the concrete below and seconds later was gone. I'd had a mini-adventure. Frog did too, no doubt. Can you find the frog in the photos?

Photo with natural light

Photo with flash

 Photo copyright Darrell Reeck

I definitely am not suggesting that you opt out of the national and global discussion. Instead, stay involved or get involved. Expressing your opinion is an opportunity and a duty of citizenship. 

I do mean that it's important psychologically to take a break. The very wise Jesus, twenty-one centuries ago, knew that. He spent relief time in the wilderness, away from crowds (including enemies).

Fourth idea: Lucy and I enjoyed a different break-time last evening. We watched reruns of M*A*S*H, a favorite television serial comedy from decades ago. Lots of good laughs. Can you find an escape like that on your television? 

And, simultaneously, enjoy some popcorn.

Fifth: Ignore the outrageous tweets storm. If we all quit clicking on the tweets, they might go away. Like his TV show fell in ratings, so will his tweets.

Sixth: Give thanks for the integrity--yes, the courage--of all the senators, Democratic and especially Republican, who voted against the "Scuttle Obamacare" bill. 

Do remember the devoted public servants--people serving in our national public institutions in a chaotic situation. Pray for them that they'll have strength to continue with integrity now and personal job fulfillment at last. That will have a benefit for you, too: the satisfaction of knowing that you're helping others as you're able.

After taking your breaks, you'll feel stronger and can reenter the decision-making process in your democracy with renewed energy and purpose.

  • Many blessings to you and your family. 
  • And if you have ideas for self-renewal, let other readers and me know about it. 
  • I invite you to share your ideas below.
  • Many thanks for reading.  
  • Please share the post.

Reader comment: "Thank you for being a breath of fresh air."

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