Health and Wellness

“It’s A Choice We Make!”

June 8, 2020

In my last post, “Rainy Day People”, where I mentioned, “People who value others as much as they value themselves”, I was vaguely alluding to the recent killing of yet another black man by a policeman.

But today I don’t want to just allude to it. I want to be clear and specific.

That policeman, first, chose to feel superior to that black man, George Floyd, and then subsequently chose to kill him, revealing how little value he placed on George’s life. And he did it with no conscience at all, even when people pleaded to let George breathe. It was horrifying to see.

This kind of thing has been going on ever since we set foot on American soil.

Yesterday, I was talking with a friend about all this.

And I asked, rhetorically, “What steps can we possibly take to change people’s thinking and eliminate the systemic racism in America?”

I was just thinking out loud, wondering how to totally stop these heinous acts against black people, these sins against humanity, these sins against God.

My friend had a simple answer.

She immediately blurted out, “There are no steps! It’s all about choice!”

She went on to say (and I’m paraphrasing here)………………

………”When we’re born, we don’t feel superior to anyone. And we, naturally, know right from wrong. But, later in life, we choose to think we are superior to others. Then we treat them badly as if they have no value, as if they are inferior. But no matter how we’re raised, no matter what influences we see and learn in this world, it always gets down to choice. You either choose right or you choose wrong. We all know the difference.”

People who feel superior to others, choose to believe it and act accordingly. But they aren’t superior. No one is superior to anyone. We’re all equal under God’s law and, supposedly, under our Nation’s Constitution.

But how is that working out for us so far?

We espouse lofty ideals and some really great standards to follow and live by, but are we always faithfully and justly executing them? No, we are not!

I hate that about America. I hate that George Floyd and so many others died in vain and their families have to suffer such indignity and the loss of their loved ones. And it all happened and continues to happen because someone decided they were superior to someone else.

No one is superior to anyone else. You may be stronger, wealthier, healthier, smarter, more knowledgeable or better at doing something than someone else, but it NEVER means you’re superior!

I hate the fact that America has been this way all along. It started when we came to America. We deemed ourselves to be superior to the Native Americans. So we killed them, took away their land and displaced them. Then we went to Africa. We thought we were superior to them. We killed many and captured many and sold them into slavery.

But dominating and killing members of another race is never the right thing to do. We know this. Yet we choose to do it or ignore it or allow it to happen. We continue doing it because we continue to CHOOSE to consider ourselves to be superior.

I repeat, NO ONE IS SUPERIOR TO ANYONE ELSE.

To stop this, all it takes is for everyone who thinks they are superior to others, to stop thinking that way.

To make a choice to see the value in others.

To make a choice to believe that we all are created equal.

To make a choice to do that which we know is right, and not do that which we know is wrong.

It’s as simple and basic as that!

Make the right choice!

P. S. I appreciate my friend for sharing her thoughts with me and for always standing up for what she believes.

At this time, I think it is befitting to close this post with a Gospel Medley, sung by my favorite singer, Lizz Wright. The Medley is from her 4th CD, called “Fellowship”.

……………………………To hear the song, click on the link below, where it says Gospel Medley (song #5).

In the second song of the Gospel Medley (song #5), called “Power Lord”, she sings…..

“….We need power. We need Holy power. We need the power to live right, to talk right and to love right.”

I appreciate Lizz for the songs she chooses to sing, and for the principles and ideas she stands for and lives by.


Music

Rainy Day Lovers

May 31, 2020

It’s Saturday morning and a storm is coming through my neighborhood. I hear it slightly in the distance.

So as I was starting to open a couple of windows so I could hear the thunder clap and roll, better, I got a text from my son, Tim, giving me a heads up about the “pretty nice thunderstorm” that was upon us.

I love rainy days, especially if they include thunder and lightening. We don’t get them here like we did in the Midwest, where I grew up. So anytime one rolls in, Tim and I are on “red alert” so we don’t miss it!

I think that a lot of people don’t like rainy days and it’s a negative event for them. Sometimes it spoils the whole day when a planned event has to be postponed because of rain. So rainy days get a bad rap.

But, to me, a rainy day is never sad, gloomy, or limiting. The music and the rhythm of the rain always speaks to my heart. To me it’s a cleansing, life-giving event with the promise of sunshine to follow. It also elicits a sense of romance and comfort within me.

Somehow, rainy days always remind me of my favorite song by Gordon Lightfoot, called “Rainy Day People”.

I like the lyrics and the meaning behind them.

I think he is saying that he appreciates people who are down-to-earth, honest and upfront. People who have gained wisdom and experience through hardships in life who are better able to move forward in life and help others progress as well. People who don’t judge others. People who listen well and are attentive to other’s needs. People who are sincere and humble. People who understand others’ situations because they have experienced similar ones too. People who value others as much as they do themselves.

I think we need more Rainy Day People in this world.

P.S. As I listened to the song and read the lyrics, two lines (that I highlighted) jumped out at me and reminded me of a saying I learned on one of my trips to Zurich, Switzerland, from Andy, a tour guide whom I befriended while I was there. He said…..

“Shared fun is double the fun. Shared pain is half the pain.”

Enjoy the song……..

“Rainy Day People”…by Gordon Lightfoot

Rainy day people always seem to know when it’s time to call.
Rainy day people don’t talk. They just listen till they’ve heard it all.
Rainy day lovers don’t lie when they tell you they’ve been down like you.
Rainy day people don’t mind if you’re cryin’ a tear or two.

If you get lonely, all you really need is that rainy day love
Rainy day people all know there’s no sorrow they can’t rise above.

Rainy day lovers don’t love any others that would not be kind.
Rainy day people all know how it hangs on their peace of mind.

Rainy day lovers don’t lie when they tell you they’ve been down there, too.
Rainy day people don’t mind if you’re cryin’ a tear or two .

Rainy day people always seem to know when you’re feelin’ blue.
High stepping strutters who land in the gutters sometimes need one, too.
Take it or leave it or try to believe it, if you’ve been down too long.
Rainy day lovers don’t hide love inside, they just pass it on.

Rainy day lovers don’t hide love inside, they just pass it on.

Source: LyricFind

Songwriters: Gordon Lightfoot

Rainy Day People lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc

Health and Wellness, Travel/Adventure

Caribbean Cruise: Day 9 and Day 10

March 29, 2020

Cozumel, Mexico – Day 9 (2/2)

At Sea – Day 10 (2/3)

(Note: I’m bundling these two Days of the Cruise because the last day, Day 10, was a day at sea and was uneventful, as we headed back to Ft. Lauderdale.)

This is the view of Cozumel Island, the most popular destination in Caribbean (Mexico).

This dock was long………a long walk to shore.

From the balcony, before we disembarked, I watched a local entrepreneur giving the passengers a ride to shore on his bicycle carriage.

I liked that idea, so I said, “Let’s ride the bike, Uncle Walt!“My treat!!”

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Health and Wellness, Travel/Adventure

Caribbean Cruise: Day 8

March 29, 2020

Roatan, Honduras – Day 8 (2/1)

I woke up about 04:15 a.m., as the cruise ship was heading toward Roatan, Honduras, our fifth port on this ten-day cruise.

I had to go out to the balcony to peek at the weather and the view.

We weren’t due to arrive at Roatan until about 08:00 a.m. So it was back to bed after I snapped this picture.

However, we arrived earlier than expected. It was about 05:00 a.m. as we approached the island……

Soon after that we were docked….

The picture above was taken from a beach area (seen below) of Mahogany Bay, at Roatan, Honduras.

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Health and Wellness, Travel/Adventure

Caribbean Cruise: Day 7

March 27, 2020

Belize City, Belize – Day 7 (1/31)

The cruise ship had to anchor five miles off shore to avoid damage to the coral reef. This is what five miles looks like out at sea.

We boarded the tender boats to get to the dock at Belize City.

We got to Belize City at about 8 a.m.

Our excursion for the day was an airboat ride through the swamps.

As soon as we got to the city we were picked up and delivered to the place where we would get on the airboats and ride through the everglades to see all kinds of wildlife.

They said we might see some alligators, manatees, and a variety of birds.

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