Let’s talk about prevention…

I read a phenomenal article about climate change and why it is so important that we invest in nature. The author, Mark Tercek “makes the case for nature” by stating that not only does investing in nature benefit the environment, it actually also benefits the economy! I’m always perusing articles to do with climate change and nature, so I was really interested in reading about how caring about nature can benefit the economy. My boyfriend works in finance, and though he cares about the state of nature, as far as I know, he wasn’t aware of how investing in nature benefits the economy. Taken directly from Mark Tercek’s article, “…we’ve found that planting a new forest can be a cost-effective strategy for businesses to comply with air quality requirements. Or, investing in watershed conservation upstream can improve water quality and reduce treatment costs for beverage companies and utilities. Or, improving natural infrastructure like rain gardens, porous pavement, and artificial wetlands can help cities address storm water runoff—a leading cause of water pollution.” I think that’s amazing! Talking and presenting evidence to global economic leaders (such as JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, Amazon etc.) is important because if we can get them on board, we are one step closer to really making noise and capturing the attention of world leaders. Mark Tercek urges us to “join the voices of businesses around the world calling for smart climate policy, including a price on carbon.”

That’s all good and very well, but if you’re like me, you’re may be scrolling through the article thinking, “That’s great, but I’m not a business leader in any way, shape, or form… what can I do?” I could probably write down a list of ten things that you can do right now that will impact the Earth, but I’ll stick with what Mark Tercek says for now; “Connect young people with nature.Take kids outside. Teach them about why it’s so important to protect the lands and waters that sustain us. Help them begin building a conservation ethic.” Being a teacher, I’m thrilled about how my position enables me to have such a significant impact on young children. Start young! Think about it: prevention is key. It’s better to prevent problems rather than have to deal with the problems after they start. (It’s much more cost effective too, Mr. Business Leader…) It’s crucial that I interest young children in respecting, caring and advocating for the environment. Make it a habit while children are young so that when they’re older, they won’t think twice about it.

Here’s the article. Well worth a read: https://blog.nature.org/conservancy/2017/07/21/insuring-nature-ensuring-resilience/

P.S. I don’t have the energy to really throw myself into detail about this one thought I have here but: climate change and caring for the environment should not be a “political party” issue. You know what I mean? It shouldn’t be Republicans fighting what Democrats are trying to push, or the other way around. We should ALL be in agreement that our climate is in trouble, and that if we don’t do something NOW, we and our children will be paying dearly. It’s ridiculous that we are spending our Earth’s precious time fighting. Anyway…

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Tell me your story!

Today I’ve been reading. I read Johnny Cash’s autobiography (very good, by the way) titled, “CASH.” It’s cliché, but the way he tells his story is the way that you can imagine your grandpa talking; slowly, honestly, bluntly at times, and punctuated with funny anecdotes and sentences you’ll want to write down and share with others. I love autobiographies; I find them so intriguing. I suppose in  some way it’s why I enjoy blogging because in a very basic way, I’m really writing a little autobiography. Though my life story certainly isn’t comparable to Johnny Cash or Michelle Obama! What are some autobiographies you’d recommend? I have lots of time for reading these days! So far my top (not in any particular order) autobiographies and biographies are:

  1. Arnold Schwarzenegger and his Total Recall.
  2. Michelle Obama: A Life. Such a good read even though it is not an autobiography. She’s an incredible woman and probably the woman I look up to the most.
  3. Now Johnny Cash and Cash.

If I’ve read others I can’t remember them, haha! Such a short list, whoops.

I’m really interested in reading about Malcom X and Dr. Martin Luther King, so I’ve been perusing the web for their biographies/autobiographies. Both of them were such influential men, and I’m fascinated with the differences and similarities between them.

Okay. So I’m back working in the customer service industry again-briefly, thank goodness. I worked during 3 out of 4 college years in a restaurant. Right now (may have mentioned it earlier) I’m working temporarily as a receptionist. Now don’t get me wrong, there are definitely parts of customer service I enjoy- I might even say I love. Things such as: successfully helping a customer, talking to clients, making money of course… I really do enjoy talking with people and chatting about their days and all that. Unfortunately this isn’t going to be a “romanticized” post, haha! Things people should know about customer service:

  1. I’m here to help you. I genuinely want you to get what you need.
  2. Don’t get angry at me for calls not being returned- hey, I understand it’s frustrating. I’ve been on your end many times. But I am LITERALLY just taking your details and then giving them to the service reps- they are the ones who are not returning the call. I can’t do anything other than forward your messages. So PLEASE don’t yell at me.
  3. Everyone should have to work for a year in the service industry. I think people would be MUCH more understanding and patient if they know what it’s like.
  4. That’s about it… just be patient people, and don’t get mad at me. I can listen to you vent about how frustrating it is that someone hasn’t called you back, but I really can’t do anything more than that. I wish I could-honestly. But I can’t. Sigh.

So yeah, anyway. That’s just been on my mind. Yesterday after transferring a call, the client angrily said (thinking the service rep couldn’t hear him) that I was a “useless fking lassie” and she went, “EXCUSE ME?! She is NOT useless, she’s doing a great job, she’s brand new at this, it’s her second week.” To which he stammered out an apology. He hasn’t called back since. HA. You got served. I have a few horror stories of rude customers I could share from over the years. Anyone else have any to share?

Sunflowers

Yesterday after work I walked across the road to the train station. It was SUCH a beautiful evening, let me describe it to you. I was sitting on cool brick, basking in the warmth of the evening sun, and enjoying the delicious feeling of the breeze rolling over my arms and legs. It must be so cozy to be a cat; you know, when they’re all curled up beside a window and that spotlight of sunlight encircles them. Two trains passed by, and I thought about the people in them. I think everyone does this, don’t they? We tend to naturally romanticize things. I often think about how at any point in the day, someone is having the best day of their life. (And someone is having the worst day.) Someone just kissed someone for the first time, someone just prayed, someone just got their heart broken, someone died, someone was born… all these someone’s. The third train pulled in and I shielded my eyes from the sun (even though I was wearing sunglasses) and I felt my heart leap when I saw him coming towards me. I don’t know what feeling is better: seeing your someone and moving toward him, or being the someone and having your someone waiting for you. (See what I mean about romanticizing everything?!)

He bought me my favorite flowers. There is nothing quite like a bouquet of sunflowers.

word vomit

My brain is really full right now, so I’m just going to spew out a little word vomit here of things that are on my mind! Polar bears, climate change, politics, NASA, solar system, planets, life elsewhere, heaven, death, family, time, full-time job (tiring), people, emotions, sadness, love, cooking, music, fun, FBI, phone, people people people, dogs, pets, cats, furry, dinner, lunch, weather, sunny, sunshine and roses, rose-colored glasses…

I wish I could make a cool poem or haiku about this.

How do you grieve?

Big question. Big topic. So… my Grandpa died a month ago. Today is exactly one month from the day he died. It’s strange. I haven’t properly grieved for him.

I cried a lot the whole month before he died, and the day he died I felt strangely peaceful and almost relieved in a way. Relieved because he is not suffering anymore, and that we don’t have to bear him suffering anymore. The song line that continually ran through my head was always “I’m not crying ‘cuz I feel so sorry for you/I’m crying for me.” (Wayman’s Song) Then I became so busy I was able to push back all the emotions of his death in the back of my mind. I was unable to go to the funeral, which was horrible and I cried about that. (He lived in Scotland and I couldn’t scrape up the extortionate funds) And then yesterday after lunch I was sitting in the train thinking that I will probably be going to see my Granny tomorrow (now today) and … it actually physically felt like my heart cracked in two. I had to return to work so I am still holding it back for now. But it really feels like I have just put a band-aid on my heart, and it’s barely holding everything back. I need to release all of the emotion, I really do. I talked to my Granny last night and we chatted about what I’ve been up to etc. and we decided that my boyfriend and I will go next weekend to see her. We’ll take her out for lunch and then spend the afternoon together. I just… I can’t do it on my own. And I know it’s selfish, especially since it’s my Granny who has felt the brunt of the loss. I just know that if I go alone I will crumble.

So… how do you deal with grief? I don’t know how long I will feel this way for. Five years ago my ex-boyfriend’s sister unexpectedly died, and I still cry for her sometimes. Do you just sortoff roll with things? Like, understand that it’s natural to feel really sad but that things get better? I really don’t know. But then I think that probably nobody really knows, and that you just take things one day at a time. Loss of a loved one is something that everyone has, or is, or will feel.

I think a lot about the person my Grandpa was. (Was.) He was the most gruff, seemingly grouchy person on the outside but the absolute most marshmallow of a man on the inside. I never appreciated or understood his sense of humor until I was in my teens. He had the best sense of humor ever. Every comment was teasing, sarcastic or a little insult. He was fiercely loyal, and a no-bullshitter. That was my favorite quality about him. He told you things straight. No beating around the bush for him! He had a hard life. I won’t go into the details because it’s his personal life, but if anyone knew hardship, grief and pain it was him. Which then leads me to almost answer my own question about how to grieve. He had reason to grieve all his life. So…how did he stay so strong?

Anyhow…so that’s all I need to say for right now. If anyone has anything to add about grief and how you dealt with it, or any thoughts related to it…please feel free to comment or to message me. I’d love to hear from you!

Scotland!

I’m in Scotland! I’m sure in one of my other posts I mentioned that my boyfriend lives in Scotland, so…I’m here staying with him and his family until September. My mother was born here, so thanks to her, I am a British Citizen! Which means I can legally live here, work here blah blah blah. Starting Wednesday I’ll be filling in for a receptionist who is going on vacation for a few weeks. She works at one of my boyfriend’s family car businesses’s. It’ll be my first time in reception. I’m slightly nervous because obviously I have no idea what I’m meant to be doing and all that… yikes. However, I have worked customer/client service at the restaurant I used to work at so…I’m comfortable working with people, talking on phones etc. Should be fine. (Ahhhhhhhhhhh dying.) Anyhow… so right now I”m just in the office typing away here on my laptop. I’ve been organizing things all morning – opening a bank account here, working out insurance, taking care of my phone service, etc. Also -some exciting news, I sold a duvet cover with MY design on it (!!!!!!), and two art prints! SO.COOL. The idea that someone bought a DUVET COVER with MY ART on it is SO FREAKING COOL. I wish I could see how it looks in their room, whoever bought it!! If you ever buy any of my art, feel free to send me a photo when it’s all hung up or displayed…I would LOVE to see it!!!! Here’s the one: it’s a Highland Cow! (Or “coo”..)  To see this as a variety of products, go to my Society6 shop. 🙂 20170710_095835.png