Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Posts Tagged ‘Relative Something

Another Thought

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Well, tomorrow brings another thought. And, yesterday’s tomorrow, is today’s today. I have another thought this morning about how I might respond to the milestone of completing ten years of daily blogging. What if I did it for ten more? That’s another way to look at this interesting opportunity.

It has definitely become a comfortable habit that continues to offer me multiple benefits, and occasionally, surprising rewards. Also, by writing about my life every day, I avoid accumulating a build up of some wild idea about someday writing an autobiography.

I should try an experiment where I choose a memory from my past which I have already chronicled here years ago, and write a fresh version to compare how different they might come out. Last night, Cyndie and I met our friends, Barb and Mike for a fine dinner out in Red Wing, MN. One of our conversations touched on the fact that memories get reshaped a little each time we recollect them.

One way I have been contemplating a recognition of ten years of Relative Something is to mine the archives for a variety of gems from years ago and repost them anew. I’ve also begun seeking possibilities for resurrecting a couple of my old “games.” One involved guessing images from an extreme closeup, and another required readers to conjure their own picture in their minds from a description I write. A day later, I provide the picture I was describing for comparison.

Meanwhile, there is no shortage of new stories worth telling happening every day around here. The flooding wasn’t catastrophic for us, but it still caused me more anguish than I care to experience. I think part of that came from the fact that Cyndie was dealing with it alone, while I was so far away at work during the days.

The days of rain have passed and the return of below freezing nights has eased the worst of flowing water for now, but there is still a ton of snow yet to melt, so who knows how long this will last.

The horses were absolutely heroic in allowing Cyndie to guide them out of the barn through the standing water without panicking over the scary reflections and sounds, of which they have had little exposure in their time with us. They’ve dealt with a lot of mud over the years, but rarely, if ever, been asked to traverse water over their ankles.

Oh, the horses.

Man, we are going to miss the horses.

There will be much to write about with the pending re-homing of our herd, but it’s hard for us to even think about, let alone put into words. Maybe that contributes to my pondering the idea of ceasing to write.

If you know me, that is a pretty unlikely result. Writing is how I best process my thoughts.

Here’s to the possibility of ten more years of somethings you might find relative.

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Written by johnwhays

March 16, 2019 at 10:11 am

A Recap

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How did we get to this point in the story? …Previously, on Something Relative:

John (that’s me) and his friend, Gary, were going on a trek in the Himalayan mountains of Nepal and wanted to share stories and photos of the trip with friends and family. Son, Julian, suggests I should use a blog for the purpose. I look to post something new everyday to keep the thing from becoming stale.

I write some poetry and take pictures. One day, my wife, Cyndie, tells me I should put my poems on my images. Words on Images becomes a regular, occasional feature.

I share stories and pictures from an annual bicycling tour and camping week that happens in June every year.

Cyndie and I go on a trip to Portugal to meet Ian Rowcliffe and his family and friends. Life altering trip inspires us to dream about creating a forest garden of our own and leads Cyndie on a path of discovery with horse communication.

When we decide to look into selling our suburban home of 25 years and shop for horse property, Cyndie gets recruited for a lucrative position with Boston Public Schools. Blog becomes filled with posts depicting me trying to cope with her absence while doing some minor remodeling in preparation of putting our house on the market.

Cyndie comes home after a year and we get our first offer on the house. We take a look at a few new properties in town before seeing the paradise that we chose in Wisconsin.

Blog becomes a chronicle of our transition to rural life while making property enhancements toward becoming first-time horse owners. Oh, we also got a Belgian Tervuren Shepherd dog named Delilah who has a knack for commanding all attention possible. Cat, Pequenita, is a sweetheart who demands less attention, but is no less loving and lovable.

I begin to figure out power tools and tractors. Cyndie and I trade off years staying home full-time to manage the property. We plot launching an equine-assisted training business. A relationship blossoms between our family and the Morales family in Guatemala, growing from a first meeting between Cyndie and Dunia at the Epona apprenticeship in which they were both enrolled. Trips back and forth to visit each other in our home countries ensue.

We decide to try building a chicken coop ourselves and make plans for a couple of years, fretting over how we would keep dog, Delilah, from killing them if we added a flock.

Neighbors (and our farrier), George and Anneliese temporarily move in with us while they are between homes in a plan to move closer to family back in Minnesota.

Somehow enough people overlook the crude and bullying, most times inappropriate, and occasionally vulgar statements and behaviors of a candidate with no previous governing experience to elect him as our 45th President in our national U.S. election.

Super moon arrives to the closest proximity in the last 69 years. It looks like a sunrise in my image.

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I’m not quite sure what to expect next. Will we actually get chickens? Will we figure out how to grow our own hay and get it cut and baled? Will we launch the business? Will we ever get our dog appropriately trained? Will the climate continue on its trend of increasing warmth and extreme precipitation events? Will I continue to post something new every day? Will I find a way to get back to visit Ian in Portugal again? Will we get the significant projects under control enough that I can ride bike and play guitar more? When will I cut my hair again?

Stay tuned and keep following along. I’ll probably post about all the above and more, with photos!

Thanks for reading my “Relatively Something” take on things and experiences!

John W. Hays

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Written by johnwhays

November 15, 2016 at 7:00 am

Today I’m

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Today I’m not preparing to evacuate a hurricane zone. In the middle of the country, the biggest threat from hurricanes on the east coast is that they might temporarily stall the usual flow of high or low pressure weather systems that move across our region.

Today I’m purposefully ignoring anything that democrats or republicans want to tell me about how awful and scary the “other” party candidates are. Just not gonna allow them to sully an otherwise promising possibility for goodness and prosperity to spring forth from even horrifically dire situations.

Today I’m remembering how it felt to be chronically depressed and appreciating the grace that allowed me to discover I had power over my thoughts and my body chemistry to navigate my way to better health. Eat well, exercise often, focus thoughts and actions in the direction of optimal health. Repeat.

Today I’m revisiting my realization that I am the only one who sees things exactly the way I do while standing in my shoes, and the view from every other vantage point is not necessarily wrong. Many could even be the exact opposite. Whether you need to turn left or right to pull into our driveway depends completely on whether you are approaching from the north or the south.

Today I’m going to laugh at something, because the universe is filled with comical possibilities. Even our horses have demonstrated the art of prankish shenanigans. It’s all in the timing, and they obviously have a sense of it.

Today I’m publishing this post, because you might stop by to read it and I want there to be something for you that wasn’t here yesterday at this time. A morsel of *this* John W. Hays’ take on things and experiences that I captured in the moment. A glimpse of the ongoing drama from my world that I hope dances around being relative to something for you every now and again.

Today I’m sending you peace and love from beautiful Wintervale Ranch in Beldenville, WI, USA.

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Many Thanks

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DSCN4129eOn this eve of our Thanksgiving holiday, I wish to extend my heartfelt thanks to you, my readers, for venturing into my world and joining in my adventures and explorations of Somethings occasionally Relative. You may have arrived to view my stories of a Himalayan trek, our visit to Portugal, my annual bike trips, pictures, poetry, Words on Images, or tales of a transition from the suburbs to our Wintervale Ranch paradise. You may be family, friends, coworkers, fellow WordPress bloggers, poets, photographers, wordsmiths, or happenstance searching link-clickers.

You are my audience, and I thank you for your participation, silent or otherwise.

I hope that regular followers have grown familiar with the usual cast of characters that populate the content of late. A certain dog seems to get the most mention. Long ago I began a move toward dropping constant use of orienting descriptions for people and animals that show up in my tales of adventure and woe, hoping that they were becoming established and familiar to readers over time.

We are many chapters into a book that you are reading as it is being written. What will happen next? I can’t make it up. The drama plays out with little concern about how I might be able to narrate it.

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I purchased a replacement GFCI breaker for power to the waterer in the paddock. It failed, too. My “spidey” sense tells me there is leakage current, after all. Removing the access panel on the waterer revealed an incredible amount of moisture present. No wonder. I saw a statistic that we are currently running in 7th place for wettest November on record.

In the previous two years of having that waterer during the winter, we’ve never faced needing to have the heater on when it was so wet.

I’m temporarily bypassing the GFI safety feature to keep the ice off the water source for our horses. Cyndie had a heck of a time breaking off the ice for them yesterday morning, after I tried a night with no power at all.

IMG_iP0964eIt appears the solar-powered battery supplying electricity to our arena fence is successfully keeping the horses from wreaking havoc on the barrier.

I found a picture I had taken with the intent of showing how wet the ground was, and discovered it caught Legacy in the distance, mouthing the fence. Busted!

Don’t forget, you can click on the smaller images to bring up the full-size view for closer inspection.

Our house is already filled with the aroma of traditional holiday feasting fare. Cyndie has been busy cooking and cleaning in preparation of hosting Thanksgiving dinner here tomorrow. Family that are planning to come should consider bringing mud-boots.

The weather shows signs of possible precipitation, in addition to the water already saturating our grounds. I’m hoping we don’t all end up stuck indoors watching parades and football games, and eating way more than we should as a result of more rain. It would be a shame to miss out on walks in our woods, exercising Delilah to tire her out, walking the labyrinth, and visiting the horses.

I’m guessing we won’t let a little rain stop us from getting out for a little bit.

Thank you for reading!

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Written by johnwhays

November 25, 2015 at 7:00 am

Winding – revisited

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If everything happened according to the plan, we should have arrived home yesterday afternoon. This will be the last in my series of revisited ‘Words on Images’ creations filling in during my adventures in Guatemala. I am taking one last day to absorb all that we have experienced in the past week and a half, before endeavoring to compose the tales of our adventure for you to see here in the days ahead. Thanks for following along!

Today, “Winding,” first published in June of 2013.

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Words on Images - Winding.

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Written by johnwhays

April 6, 2015 at 6:00 am

Simple – revisited

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During my adventures in Guatemala, I am taking a break from posting daily. To fill the void, I have rummaged through the “Relative Something” archives for a few previously published ‘Words on Images’ posts for you to ponder anew.

Today, “Simple,” first published in October of 2009.

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Words on Images - Simple.

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Written by johnwhays

April 5, 2015 at 6:00 am

Remember – revisited

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During my adventures in Guatemala, I am taking a break from posting daily. To fill the void, I have rummaged through the “Relative Something” archives for a few previously published ‘Words on Images’ posts for you to ponder anew.

Today, “Remember,” first published in May of 2012.

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Words on Images - Remember.

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Written by johnwhays

April 4, 2015 at 6:00 am