This past week’s calendar was filled with lots of expected tasks and commitments, with fall activities back in full swing after summer hiatus. Of course, the unexpected has a way of springing in. Here are some of the unexpected things that cropped up this past week.
- One evening I got back from an activity and put on my Chromebook to see an instant message from my daughter warning me that her hair was now purple. She wanted me to know before I saw it on Facebook. This led to a Skype call so I could see it better than in the photo – and also so we could visit as she is thousands of miles away. Her hair looks nice purple, but it is not a long-time commitment as it will fade out in six weeks or so. This is helpful as her hair is quite long, so a permanent color would take a very long time to grow out.
- I had expected to have an appointment for a flu vaccine study that I had agreed to participate in, but it got cancelled so I got to attend an excellent lecture on climate change and its impacts in our state instead. This also gave me material for a poem that I wrote from a prompt at Binghamton Poetry Project this week. Serendipity strikes again!
- My spouse B had an unexpected day off on Friday. Upper management gave them the day off to reward them for the release of a recent product, so we scooted off to Oneonta to attend the opening of an art exhibit that featured works of a college friend of mine. I had not told her that we would be there – and we almost missed her as we arrived early and she had had quite a drive after work to reach the reception – but it was fun to see the look of surprise on her face when we connected.
- Unfortunately, this week also afforded the both expected and unexpected news of yet another mass shooting here in the US. The details and timing are unexpected, shocking, and tragic. That it will happen again is sadly expected. And disturbing. And tragic. I can’t understand how the interpretation of the Second Amendment to our Constitution has become so warped that some people think it means that anyone can have a gun anytime, anywhere. These people totally ignore the first clause of the amendment, which talks about a “well-regulated militia” and sets the context for the part that follows about the right to bear arms. At the time, the United States did not have a standing army, so the defense of the country was left to state militias. The men who made up the militias were not professional soldiers, but farmers or tradesmen or whatever, so they had to have guns available in case they were called on to defend their town, state, or country. The amendment didn’t intend that any person could have any weapon anywhere anytime. The mass shootings get attention, which masks the smaller scale tragedies of gun violence that happen every day across the country, and nothing happens to reign in the problems. Definitely, people who hunt or target shoot or have guns for legitimate needs should be able to have them, but we need to get them out of the hands of the mentally disturbed and those intent on killing people, whether strangers or family or neighbors. [I can’t bring myself to write any more than this about mass shootings, but I will provide this link to a piece that I wrote about a mass shooting in my area and how it relates to other similar-but-different tragedies.]
This post is part of Linda’s Stream of Consciousness Saturdays. This week’s prompt was “expect/unexpected.” Please come join us! Find out how here: http://lindaghill.com/2015/10/02/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-oct-315/