I've lived all over the world, but the buggiest place has been Florida. Ants. Roaches. Blue-flies. All other sorts of creepy crawlies. I mostly use pure essential oils to repulse them. My latest for the roaches is white vinegar, water and peppermint. This doesn't kill the bugs, it just disgusts them and they go away; I have to apply it often, unlike poisonous alternatives. I have cats and don't want to spread poisons around.
When I moved into my current apartment, I didn't have a bed. The efficiency I rented had a fold up futon couch that the landlord let me use. It served me well for years, until one day, a bed bug crawled across my shoulder. It freaked me out and turned my life into a month long nightmare.
I had to throw out the bed and purchase Bed Bug Bully to spray everywhere. I'd get up in the middle of the night to inspect everything and spray, spray, spray. OMG! I didn't expect to ever be rid of these blood suckers. But finally, they were gone.
I had attended a community Chamber of Commerce meeting where a bed bud specialist gave us a lecture on the problem. Seems there is an epidemic of these pests and getting rid of them is quite the challenge. NYC, I'm told, has also experienced this invasion.
Once I thought only dirty places get these pests. Not so. I don't know where they come from, how they proliferate, and how they get into your house. I am only glad that since I have gotten rid of them, I haven't seen any. Aside from my essential oil applications, my furbabies manage to catch anything that moves. They earn their keep!
I loved living in Manhattan. I didn't need a car. Public transportation including buses and subways and trains were reliable, ran often and affordable. There were taxis, too. But I loved walking. Even when I lived in Jersey City Heights, right across the river, I'd go into the city just to walk around.
I'd walk everywhere. Harlem. Midtown. The Village. Chinatown. Little India. Little Korea. When I lived in NYC in an apartment as small as a closet, I never felt closed in. I had all of NYC. I never felt unsafe. I had a regular shopping routine; I never went to a supermarket. Instead, I'd get groceries in Chinatown, Little Italy and other local stores. My total for the week never exceeded $20!
When I moved to Pembroke Pines in Florida to stay with a cousin, I started to walk around. OMG. That was a mistake! I was approached by so many men. I stopped walking. Eventually, I got my own place in Lauderhill and a car. I couldn't believe that it took me over a half hour to go across town.
Buses in Florida, if you are going East to West....well, I would wait till I was almost in tears for them to come, if they came at all.
Finally, I found a great apartment, centrally located. Everything I need is in walking distance. I bike to the center of town, though. So, my walking is only to the local store up the street, or across the street to the supermarket and CVS. After having sat in pee on a bus, I try to avoid the bus. I miss walking. I have tried to exercise in the apartment, but...somehow, I never get to it. I don't like gyms. It's too hot to bike to the beach.
As fortune would have it, we have a pool at my complex. Swimming has become my exercise. Looking at the sky, being at home with pool access, is truly a blessing. I still miss walking. Seeing the shops and their changing displays. Seeing all those different people from around the world. Looking up at those buildings. Discovering new neighborhoods. But a blessing is a blessing. How could I complain?
I learned about Shiatsu from my supervisor when I lived in Tokyo. She was accepted as a student by Chinese acupuncturists, which was really unusual. She needed someone to practice on and I volunteered.
Shiatsu helped me live and helped me help other people when I was in Israel. I lived in a farming village in the Arava desert. Our closest neighboring village was several miles away and Eilat was an hour or so by car. We had no stores and our supplies did not include medicine. I was able to help relieve headaches, help relax a mother enough so she could nurse, help toothaches, back aches and so on, including relieving menstrual cramps.
I earned a certificate as a Shiatsu practitioner in Tel Aviv.
When I returned to the States, Ohashi, who wrote the book I learned from, had a school in NYC. Massage in general was still unrecognized and Shiatsu was practically unknown.
I finally moved to Florida in the '90s and became a licensed massage therapist. Swedish massage, sports massage and other advanced modalities are wonderful, but, compared to Shiatsu, they are not 'medicine.' Shiatsu is based on Chinese acupuncture; the difference being that no needles are used, only your hands. Other than that, the principles are the same.
It amazes me that people still would rather pop pills than use acupuncture or Shiatsu. When I was a massage therapist, one of the other therapists at our location had hurt her wrist. I had had hurt myself around the same time. I got a treatment and was back at work the next day. She, on the other hand, was in a restraining device and out of commission for a few weeks.
I've been to some acupuncture clinics here in Florida. They are amazing. Upgraded and beautiful. How times change!
I want to write about my cat, Mishu. My neighbor adopted this orange kitten and named him Mishu. He wouldn't stay in the house and would yowl until he was let out. This went on for a while. He'd come yowling around my apartment looking to be fed. I already have to cats and wasn't ready to have another. The neighbor would give me money to feed Mishu.
Eventually, Mishu decided I was his human and began to come into my house regularly. He is now a year old. I could set my clock by him. He comes in at 5 or 6 am, eats a little, then sits by me till I move. Then he goes out to return again at 6 pm. At first, the other cats did not like him. Now, he comes in and stays for longer. When he cuddles next to me, he constantly purrs. He is so affectionate. And the other cats, especially Mickey, licks him and sniffs him when he comes in.
We decided we had to have him fixed. The day he came home, I kept him in. I got up in the morning and he was gone. I couldn't figure how he got out until I saw the torn screen in the bathroom. I have jalousie windows, and he tore the screen and escaped. I don't have a cat door so this is his escape route.
We thought having him fixed would calm him down. No way. He is domineering, territorial and possessive. He still fights with other neighborhood cats coming home with cuts and scratches. He brings me captured birds, mice and lizards as love offerings.
When he is home, the other cats don't come into the room. I am HIS human after all.
Animals, like babies, do not have a cluttered mind. They see things we don't. I am in a program that helps me with the rent. The other day, my social worker came over. Mishu took one look at her and dashed off to his escape window. I take his assessment seriously.
The other evening, his former 'owner' had some guys over; they were outside,playing music and being loud. Mishu was coming home, and when he saw them, he freaked. I had to grabbed him and take him in the house.
I take his assessment seriously.
ensorship is nothing new. The internet has open the avenues to gain information on just about any subject.
I loved our hometown library. It was two miles away by bike. The ride over seemed like only a mile. It was a small library, two floors, wooden banisters, tall sky-high windows and palatable quiet.
My sister, who was smarter than me, wanted to borrow a book above her grade level. She was denied. I was amazed and horrified. So, I took the book out in my name.
Information was simply not easy to access. If you wanted something the library didn't have, you could put in a request, and they would locate it and notify you when it came in. Still, you might have had to go to NYC, to their main library, midtown. Access to legal books, never the less, depended and probably still does, on some connection to the legal profession. The internet overcomes all these hurdles. I can even get the library's material on the net.
During the protests of the sixties, we would compare newspaper reports. Knowing the source was so important. The slant of the report was determined by the main underlying viewpoint and philosophy of the paper.
I haven't been inside a library in years. There are many ways around censorship. The internet is the most empowering device. Access to information, any information, medical, legal, general, news, adinfinitum keeps the mind active and offers the possibility of evolving, growing...
Writing and art are my passions!