I woke up this morning with an intense feeling of gratitude to be alive and to have the reduced, trimmed-down amount of Freedom I still have. Then started writing articles, listening to a woodpecker peck away at the pecan tree out my window. Then went out and picked a coupla ripe tomatoes in Prince William’s Garden.

Yesterday I wrote 3 articles and stayed up late writing. Just before going to bed I clicked on an email about Facebook. Decided to sign on to it. Signed off, then tried to find my site and a notice, “Invalid Password” popped up and thought that was the end of it.

Those who know me know I’m almost illiterate when it comes to anything mechanical or electronic, and have trouble operating a can opener. My use of the computor is more accidental than any deliberate know how, usually. Even my Twitter site set up by my NY editor stumps me. However, I never cease to be amazed at this wonderful computor machine.

Having been born in the horse and buggy days, I’m awed by the fact I can type out something with two fingers and it goes around the world 24-7. And always so pleasantly surprised to receive emails and comments. The past few days I’ve had several wonderful surprises.

Not the least of which was receiving a response to my Facebook sign up the first thing this morning. Out of the blue and so unexpected came a comment from my local surgeon, Dr. Rich, who did an emergency operation on me about a year ago. He mentioned my blog site, octogenariansblog.com. Had no idea anyone in this little north Georgia town even read my blog articles.

I probably know less than a dozen people in this little town that I moved to from Atlanta about 3 years ago. I receive comments from readers around the world, from Switzerland, Australia and China – but more surprised to receive an email from someone local than foreign countries.

I had rarely been to doctors until I moved here and there for awhile had a bout of health problems.Quite frankly, I!m not too fond of doctors in general, but this particular doctor was an exception. I adored him, and suspect he saved my life in an emergency room operation. Have always felt that his being on emergency room duty that night was Divine Intervention. And imagine my surprise after signing on to Facebook late last night, waking up to see a response from him? Now I’ll try to get back to the site.

My second surprise this morning was a comment from my friend Kent McManigal, a writer for the Albuquerque Examiner, saying he was moved to tears from my article yesterday, “If You Want to Gather Honey Don’t Knock Over the Beehive.”

Another wonderful surprise, after checking storyofmylife.com and seeing over 40,000 had visited my story on that site in less than a month. Probably more than the population of this little town I live in.

Additionally, last week received a lengthy, newsy email from my oldest dearest friend in Hollywood, Grace Zabriskie, an actress and artist I have known from the 60s. One who has been in many movies, co-starring with Farrah Fawcett in “The Burning Bed” and many others, plus dozens of appearances on television shows. She co-starred in Norma Rae. She used to be a regular on the Seinfeld show.
I met Grace when she was a student at Brenau College here in Gainesville, and ironically, I now visit Brenau to watch my grandchildren perform ballet on the stage at Brenau.

Grace is a very accomplished, talented person, and for anyone interested, you can google Grace Zabriskie on the net and read about her and the movies she has been in, plus her accomplishments as an artist.

Another friend from Kenya, Africa, moved to Maryland, and we stay in contact. She wants me to go to Kenya with her to see Mt. Kilimanjaro, which I would love to see, but I don’t fly on a plane. I’ve always wanted to go there since the movie “Snows of Kilimanjaro,” starring Gregory Peck.

Since I will be 85 years old on August 8th, most of the friends I once knew are no longer around. But so grateful for this long and varied life, which today seems so short. So fortunate to have my children and grandchildren around to enjoy along with a few friends. On the other hand, it seems like I have lived several lives in this one journey. My 4 year old grandson, Prince William, thinks I’m his age when he insists I get on the floor and play cars with him.

From time to time I’m reminded of all these plaques my mother had hanging on my bedroom wall growing up back there in the country. One said, “Life is real, Life is earnest and the grave is not its goal.” Funny how things we read, heard and saw as a child stick with us. And remind us. Another plaque said, “If you fail, try again.”

Plus the fact, I’m so fortunate my son called 16 months ago and said, “Mother, I’ll asign a team to help you with a blog site if you would just write.” I had no idea what a blog was. The first thought that came to mind was a Rorschach test, a technique psychiatrists use by spattering ink on a pad and asking the subject what they see.

Reminds me of one patient taking the test and after each spatter, suggested he saw something sexual. Finally the psychiatrist said, “Is your mind in the gutter, do you see something sexual in everything?” The patient replied, “I’m not the one drawing the dirty pictures, you are!”

So this fourth of July, I’m home all day, enjoying writing, and feeling so grateful for my many blessings, the family and few friends I do have.

Hope you are as blessed as I Am.



Email: annecleveland@bellsouth.net

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