I have not died or done anything drastic. (Sorry for the long absence.) I have, on the contrary, been living quite extraordinarily. It will doubtless be remembered by longtime readers that I used to be very ill with some kind of respiratory distress; the doctors did not agree on what it was but did at least agree that it was complicated, and made more difficult by mental stress and a variety of allergies. Upon returning to my home country, I expected the change of air, situation and environment to have some positive effect and that eventually I would be able to look forward to waking up in the morning and perhaps one day be able to look at my own future with a tad more hope and a measure less of dread.
I don’t say that these goals have all been achieved and that I bear no negative effects from a long and chronic illness, but I will say that last year I could only walk briskly for fifteen minutes before I was weak, dizzy, and needing my albuterol inhaler: this year it is half an hour:) In the printed word it seems so small... but imagine five whole years of gasping for air every time I tried to walk on a treadmill or take a hike or keep pace with others on a city sidewalk. I can now even start a regular exercise regimen that does not simply involve slow stretches. It feels good to be able to run, even for just a minute or two at a time.
My garden is starting to realize that winter will not last forever, too; when brushing out some odd leaves, clipping back the neighbors’ ivy from my red-brick corner, there seems a waiting, quivering, impatient, laughing silence. It makes me afraid that with such life waiting in my little garden, what must it have looked like when the very stones of the earth were desperate to cry the name of Jesus! I look forward to spring, to my roses and my herbs and the cats rolling around in the patches of sunlight. I want the sun on my face and the smell of clean earth on my hands.
Oh, and I splurged on Amazon.com and bought some used copies of some of my old textbooks from my grad studies in Ireland. The Alliterative Revival is so much more exciting than it sounds... and I’ve begun to read in Old English again.