Letter From New York 02 20 2016 Thoughts on a Saturday night…

It’s a wild Saturday night here in Claverack.  The creek is illuminated with floodlights.  I am having one of the first martinis since I got out of the hospital, now almost two weeks ago.  My body is working very hard to be normal; I am not as tired as I was and while there are still some tests to be done I think Dr. Paolino was right:  I was sick and now I am better.

On Pandora is Hipster Cocktail Music, a channel I added by accident but thought I would try out.  What I am discovering is I’m not a hipster.  Probably time to change to another channel soon.  An interesting experiment.

Life is an interesting experiment.  Cooking certainly is.  I have been cooking for the last three hours, prepping dishes for an off the train, train party.  Those of you who know me, know that our train community is tight knit and we party off and on the train.  Tomorrow, Loretta, who is one of the conductors is throwing a party that will include her family and friends, which includes those of us from the train. 

In the slow cooker, I have BBQ ribs cooking and I have in the oven something I have never attempted before, a casserole.  Never in my long life have I cooked one so I thought I would attempt one.  This one is ham and rice and vegetables and who knows whether it will work out or not.

All of these have been diversions from the real world.   Or what we think of as  “the real world.”  Hillary has narrowly won Nevada, which she needed to do and Trump, God Help Us, has won South Carolina.  He is now in for the long haul.

Trump may very well win the Republican nomination.  I suspect it will be as catastrophic as Goldwater was in 1964 but in this campaign, all bets are off.  Everyone I know is, as the Brits would say, “gob smacked.” I know I am.  Like many others I thought Trump would burn out by end of summer but here he is, stronger than ever.

Spring is on us.  [It was 63 degrees here in Claverack today.  No need for the winter coat I wore when I left the house.  People were in shorts.] And Trump is with us more than he ever was.

Look, it’s Saturday night and people are out celebrating whatever they do on Saturday night while I am tucked away in the cottage writing and thinking about world events.

And while I am sitting here, still listening to Hipster Cocktail Music, I noticed that the last survivor of Treblinka, a Nazi concentration camp, has died.  His name was Samuel Willenberg, a man who said he survived “by chance.”  They are leaving us, the witnesses to that incredible, horrible time that was World War II.  The unspeakable horrors of that time are being resurrected in these days, with IS and its atrocities. 

While they boggle our mind, they continue.  There is no World War to stop them.  All is fractious politics in the Mideast. 

It is sweet to be here in the cottage, my dining room table a mess of papers from my teaching, the lights illuminating the creek, music on Pandora, the hum of my dishwasher in the background, plans to redo my bathroom. 

All the lucky things I enjoy because of the moment in time and place in which I was born, coupled with the luckiness that my life provided me.  When I wake in the morning, I work to take time to say my mantra:  thank you for this day in which I find myself, thank you for the resources to live through this day and thank you for the luck that has brought me to this place, cozied in my cottage, surrounded by friends and living a magical life.

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