Hi, Dear Reader. It’s late morning in Lithia, Florida, on Friday, March 4, 2022. It is a warm spring day in the Tampa Bay area. Currently, the temperature is 81˚F (27˚C) under sunny skies. With humidity at 45% and the wind blowing from the east at 5 MPH (8 KM/H), the feels-like temperature is 79˚F (26˚C). It’s going to be a hot, almost summer-like day; the forecast calls for sunny skies and a high of 88˚F (31˚C). Tonight, skies will be clear. The low will be 61˚F.
Well, tomorrow is my 59th birthday. As you know, I am extremely ambivalent about reaching the milestone; on the one hand, I’m glad that I’m alive and in relatively good health. Beats being dead, that’s for sure.
On the other hand, I’m not exactly looking forward to tomorrow. Since I, of my own volition, turned down an invitation to go to a theme park to celebrate the occasion, I have no idea what The Caregiver’s Plan B is. I have not asked – I don’t want to give her the impression that I’m demanding that we go out to eat at a local restaurant; demanding stuff is something I don’t do often or well – and right now she’s in her home office doing remote work for the county courthouse anyway. All I know is that the topic of “what we’ll do tomorrow” was not broached at breakfast, so….
This is the first time that I’ve experienced a serious case of the Birthday Blues. I have felt bouts of sadness on March 5 for the past 12 years – ever since my mother’s health took that fatal downturn in 2010 that ended with her death in July of 2015 – but nothing as acute as this year. Other than maybe wanting to go to Cali Viejo – a Colombian restaurant in Brandon – I don’t have a Plan B of my own.
So, Dear Reader, here I am, on the eve of my 59th birthday, typing a blog post while the digital copy of Sony Classical’s John Williams & Steven Spielberg – The Ultimate Collection plays on my Amazon Music app. I have not listened to this album in a while; I have a lot of John Williams-related recordings, and many of the themes on John Williams & Steven Spielberg – The Ultimate Collection are present there, too. I guess I figured I needed some “comfort music” to help me get through the day, so it was either John Williams & Steven Spielberg – The Ultimate Collection or a Star Wars soundtrack. The former – obviously – won the coin toss.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine continues unabated, and even though the Ukrainians are fiercely resisting, it’s now a question of how long they can continue doing so. Vladimir Putin has not been swayed by world opinion and opposition to his aggression, and Russian attacks on Kyiv and other cities in the war-torn country are intensifying. The United States and NATO are providing arms to Ukraine, but they both have said they cannot intervene militarily because the country is not a member of the alliance.
This morning, in fact, I heard that the Ukrainian government asked NATO to declare (and enforce) a no-fly zone over Ukraine. NATO refused.
Maybe the combination of Ukrainian resistance and the harsh sanctions imposed on Russia will convince other Russian officials and military leaders to depose Putin and reverse his aggressive policies. Somehow, knowing Russia and its history well enough to make a prediction, I doubt this will happen, but one can hope, right?
Anyway, I’ve tarried here long enough. I need to take a shower and change into (ha ha) street clothes, even though I will probably end up sitting in my room till The Caregiver announces that dinner is served or I decide to grab a book and head to the living room couch and read for a while. So until next time, Dear Reader, stay safe, stay healthy, and I’ll catch you on the sunny side of things.