Wednesday, June 30, 2010

So, you think there are no castles here

Well, there is no denying the Royal Castle across the street from my apartment in Warsaw was significantly more legitimate, more historic, more solidly constructed -- pretty much more everything -- than the would-be castle across the street from my leased-for-the-summer townhouse in Minnesota. But, you cannot argue the point. There really is (at least, was) a castle across the street from me here in Minnesota, too. Perhaps, castles are to be found wherever I go; an interesting point over which to speculate. Whatever …. the view from upper-level windows often is intriguing and fascinating. Of that, you can be sure.

Forever Fram the Fortunate

Part 1 of (maybe) 2 (or more)

During the immediate eight or nine months before I went to Poland, I had dropped eighteen pounds which had crept up on me during the eleven or twelve years since I had quit smoking. While I was in Poland, I lost another eight or nine pounds. Since I returned from Poland, I have gained those eight or nine back, and a few people have commented that I look both better and younger carrying the extra weight.

Why am I mentioning this? Very simple. Because, during the past few weeks, I have been in a phase of spending too much time thinking about stupid, trivial, unimportant, nonsensical things rather than about the important matters in my life.

It is not that fretting about what possessions to keep and which to throw away is an easy or a welcome task, or that my opinions about reincarnation or love have no relevance in my life, but it is that I have been failing to put my life into perspective and to prioritize the chores that are confronting me at this point in time.

Where do I want to be a year from now, or should I just hoist sails and go wherever the wind takes me? Who do I want to be with a year from now, or should I move over into the "love the one you are with" side of the ledger? I think these are the only two real questions confronting me, and they are facing me in that order. I have two months to reach some major decisions in my life.

All right. That said, take one more step. What in god’s name am I doing writing (i.e., whining, crying, complaining) here?

I could be married to an evil, mean, gold-digging woman -- but I am not. I could have a job I hate and a boss who makes my life miserable -- but I do not. I could have a serious, even a life-threatening illness -- but I do not.

When I was a school boy, I slept in a snow/ice cave for ten nights and had no food except for what I shot with a rifle. When I was in the Marine Corps, I slept on rocks anchored to a slope so I would not fall down it into a ravine and, more than once, slept tied to the branches of a tree so I would not fall out of it. I have the strength to do this yet, and would neither care all that much nor complain if I had to do it again right now. So, why does my life seem to be in turmoil today when compared to living life like that in the past? Absolutely no logical explanation.

Like many before me, I have looked into the eyes of death, closed my own and leaped into it with a smile and a laugh -- then collapsed into sleep after living through it, only to repeat the exercise a day or two later. So, what is important enough in my life right now to match that? Absolutely nothing.

My only issues are where do I want to live next winter (or, maybe, even longer) and, if fate wills it, who do I want to live with in "momentary" (sorry, I could not resist) happiness. You know, it is quite possible I am a very, very lucky man, but simply too dumb to realize it. I suppose that is what love can do to you: Confuse you, put you into a state of bewilderment, keep you off balance in terms of the other elements in your life.

Think about it. I soon will be literally unencumbered of any albatrosses around my neck and free to "go my (your) own way" to a significantly greater degree than I was a year ago -- or, even than I have been at any time in my life since I was eighteen or nineteen. Maybe, there will be no one for me to go to, but will that be the end of the world for me? Not quite. Love most certainly is a two-way street, so why give it if you do not also receive it? Life goes on, and so will I -- with or without a companion by my side.

A young lady in northern California wrote to me recently that she has reconciled herself to the thought she probably never will find the ideal partner with whom to share the rest of her life. It could be that I need to "grow up" in that sense, too, and then accept probability as fact that I will be living the rest of my years with no love greater than that which friends can offer for each other.

When a man is young and inexperienced at life, there is every reason to be wary and nervous, but I am older and have swung a sword a number of times. I suppose it might be understandable when a man drifts off into a daze during his weaker moments, but, when all is said and done, there should be no problem for him eventually to remember what he has accomplished in the past and who he is because of it and what he is capable of doing tomorrow and the day after.

And, most importantly, there should be no problem for a man to understand that there really is absolutely nothing at all in this world to fear. Life can do no more to him than kill him, and it most certainly will do just that, sooner or later, no matter what.

I frequently have been accused of being too introspective and of taking myself too seriously. Well, perhaps. No matter. I wonder .... possibly, I will be fortunate enough to find a castle to lease for the winter ....

(To be continued ....)

Castles in the Air" by Thomas Love Peacock

My thoughts by night are often filled
With visions false as fair:
For in the past alone I build
My castles in the air.

I dwell not now on what may be:
Night shadows o'er the scene:
But still my fancy wanders free
Through that which might have been.


Anonymous said...

Hello Fram..everything ok?
Very nice post :)))))))))))
I had to laugh alot about that castle !!! you think it is not castles around here..ehehhehehe

Your writing becomes better and better..I dont know if the rest is about you or a new storie..but i think since your primary focus is where to stay in autumm..first..go to the love of your heart wherever it may be.(if there is a love in return,,)If not i wuld enjoy myself and que sera que sera!!..

For me this days..I have finished my work nighshifts 8 nights and have changed the day completely..I do my packings for departure to Cypros at mondaymorning..(god i love to be in the sun for a while..).

By the way..that old uniform was very neat!!:))))))Happy time Fram the great!!!!Kisses happily!!:))))

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Poverty is stranger to industry.....................................................................

Magdalena said...

Really cute castle, Frammy! White Bear must be terribly jealous, isn't he? :-)

Fram Actual said...

Thanks for coming to visit, Anita, and the compliment about my writing. Yes, whatever will be, will be ....

My writing here is always about me, although it might be used elsewhere and for other purposes at times. This is actually a good place to practice, and a better place to clear the cobwebs.

I am happy for you that the night shift is finished and that you soon will be on your way to sunny skies and beautiful waters. Be sure to greet the Mediterranean for me, and tell it to prepare for the return of the dragon ships.

Fram Actual said...

Hi there, beautiful one. Nice to see you out and about today.

White Bear was insisting we buy our own castle like it until I explained to him this castle was only for playing in, not for living in, and that we would look around for the real thing. He told me he did not want to hibernate next winter, so that I had better find one before then. He sure can be a bossy guy at times.

By the way, how are the new rollerblades? I can visualize you on them, Mag, racing up and down the roadways and through the countryside.

Magdalena said...

Well, I can see you don't have an easy life with this smarty furry, but Jack, unfortunately, is very the same.

My new rollerbalades are the best in whole world! They are so comfortable like a sport shoes, but on wheels. Yes, I race every day, sometimes my mom go with me on her bike. I cannot wait until I am strong enough to spend more time racing, because now I am on this zero diet, and sometimes feel a bit tired. Tomorrow the last day :-)

Fram Actual said...

That your mama should ride along with you on her bicycle is not a surprise, Mag, but what I am really curious about is if your papa will put on his new rollerblades and take to the roadways, too. If he does, he is a more courageous man than I am.

I finally resumed my own exercise regimen, just yesterday, six months to the day since I last did it. Unfortunately, I do not think it will be so easy for me to cut back on some food items. I have discovered French Silk Chocolate ice cream. I love it as much as the Magnum Classic, and have been buying it by the half-gallon.

Promise to be careful on the blades ....

Magdalena said...

Oh, sure he did! He put them on the firs day he bought it, and first we were riding at home. The next day we had a little trip around our little town, and we both fell down once. The next day he packed them to his car and promised to ride as often as he can find the time and the right road.

Mniam, you better do not tell me about those ice cream now...

I will, promise :-)

Fram Actual said...

Good for him ....

As for you: Ice cream, ice cream, ice cream, ice cream, Magnum Classic ....

Sorry, Mag. I lost control for a moment ....

Something special ....