The Eighth of July – Twenty Fifteen

Hello again,

I’m still in a funk about writing here, but just a quick update on the patient.

Since stopping the Keppra (anti-convulsant drug) last week, things are improving a lot for Paul. I had a feeling they would. He is still taking it much, much slower than he did before the concussion. He will chose one or two chores around here to accomplish each day and will do them early while it’s still not too hot, and then he will go up to his bed and “rest” until lunchtime.

After lunchtime he will maybe drive over to Marblehead to check on his boat or do a small errand. Then more rest until suppertime.

Usually around this time of year, he will have his boat hauled out in order to scrape and repair/repaint the bottom of the boat and do any other small repairs that are obvious. He knew instinctively that he wasn’t going to be able to do that job himself so he called his cousin Ralph, who owns a boatyard in M’head, and asked if they would haul out the boat this week and do the painting/repairs that he would have done. So that’s what’s happening with that.

He’s missed selling lobsters at the Farmers’ Market on Saturdays for 2 weekends now, and will probably also miss it this weekend, but maybe by next week he will be able to do it again. He might be able to get some “bugs” from some of his buddies who are lobstering now. Slowly, very slowly, he’s working his way back.

I have to say, I wanted him to retire! But he told me, in no uncertain terms, that to retire from lobstering would be death to him. He wouldn’t want to live if he couldn’t go out there on the boat. It’s just part of him, deep down in his psyche, to be on the ocean for part of his life.

He was saying the other day, when we were watching the evening news on TV, that he is so, so, SO glad that he never had to work in a stuffy office and battle the rush-hour traffic (that we see on aerial views on the news each night), and is just so thankful he’s been able to live his life the way that has been best for him. Making a livable living and having a wife and 2 dogs and house to support has been possible this way – nobody got rich but we have survived.

So that’s that. I wrote more than I’d planned.

Watching Wimbledon Tennis now… not too excited about it this year – the same old regulars are in contention in this second week – I really would like to see some new winners for a change – am sick of the usual suspects who already have what seems like billions in the bank by now. So I root for the underdogs! And get exasperated when they lose!

Here’s a photo I took of my little corner garden with the two bird baths… It’s not spiffed up because Paul hasn’t been able to do trim work out there… he did mow the inner lawn where the dogs go once but that just about did him in. Then he put in 2 plants that he’d bought at the farmers’ market and he bent down funny and pulled a muscle in his back! Ice pack and then heating pad for a day and now he’s a little better with that.



Bex & Co.

I think I could turn and live awhile with the animals…

They are so placid and self-contained,

I stand and look at them sometimes half the day long.

They do not sweat and whine about their condition,

They do not lie awake in the dark and weep for their sins,

They do not make me sick discussing their duty to God,

Not one is dissatisfied… not one is demented with the mania of owning things,

Not one kneels to another nor to his kind that lived thousands of years ago,

Not one is respectable or industrious over the whole earth.

~ [Walt Whitman, from “Leaves of Grass, No. 32”] ~

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15 Responses to The Eighth of July – Twenty Fifteen

  1. TopsyTurvy says:

    The helmet is a really good idea, especially since concussion injuries are cumulative. You don’t want to be adding one injury on top of another.

    Hope Paul is feeling better and able to do a bit more each day. *hugs to you both*

    BTW, if you were talking to me, I didn’t say anything about being a recreational fisherman. That’s a whole other ball of wax, and I know it. I said if he needs to be on the water then maybe he needs a pleasure boat for some non-work times on the water. Very different.


  2. Bex says:

    Regarding head gear… he mentioned this idea to a few people and so far two people have given him a helmet… one gave him one yesterday and the other, who is a friend who used to own and operate the Marblehead Bicycle Co., said he had some at home and would give him one. So he’ll have two… not sure what they look like – I told him maybe he could start a thing where all the lobstermen wear them for protection out there!

    As for Paul and recreational fishing, no chance of that. Working fishermen/lobstermen are from different planets from “recreational” fisherpeople. Never the twain shall meet! Well, some might, but not him. He’s one stubborn dude!

    However, the idea of just pulling up fewer traps is one he is going to consider and implement.


  3. crochetlady says:

    Glad to hear that things are getting better for the both of you. Time is a great healer, they say. I second the motion of protective head gear for that young man. I am sure it will increase your peace of mind, too!


  4. TopsyTurvy says:

    Oh, yay! Glad to hear how you and Paul are handling your SS, Bex! Might want to remind your smart guy that moving toward retirement doesn’t have to mean giving up time on the ocean, though. It just means more choice as to when he goes out and whether it’s for pleasure or to work.

    Maybe Paul needs to add in a pleasure boat, so he has the choice of what kind of day on the waves he wants to have. šŸ˜‰


  5. Bex, You’ve been a good caregiver. Great news Paul is recovering this well.

    I can understand his never wanting to leave the water. It’s his way of live and his enjoyment. I get that. It’s nice to be as financially sound as you sound to be.

    Love how lush the bird sanctuary looks. No more snow!


  6. Bex says:

    Teri, P. has been getting his SS for a few years now and I’ve been getting mine for several years… He saves his and I use mine for my bills. So he’s OK for money.

    Plus, we both have IRA’s saved up so it’s not that we will lack for money to live on, it’s just that a “way of life” is very important to him (and me) and if he had to stop working, he’d be lost. It’s all he’s ever done and he’s not one to try new things – he’s a stubborn old salt and this is just how it is. I am encouraging him to start liquidating his portfolios soon, as well, due to the world financial situation which is heating up!


  7. TopsyTurvy says:

    Bex, I think you said something about Paul being nearly 70 years old? From my own experience I think Paul has had to pay self-employment tax all this time so he would have social security later.

    With social security, you don’t gain any more money in payments when you hit 70. So if you don’t start drawing your SS by 70 you are actually throwing away the money you put into the system.

    That said, Paul might want to talk to someone about how social security all works. At 70, he should start taking in his pension with an eye to partially supporting all of you while he works on the boat or selling on themdays he wants to.

    You could even bank the SS money, saving it for the winter when its harder for him to get out there and such.

    Paul needs to check into how things will work, taking in his SS when he turns 70. Could be he wouldn’t even have to pay self-employment taxes anymore on his income.


  8. Eric Mayer says:

    Paul has the right idea. There’s nothing more valuable than being able to live how you want to live. Your life is worth more than any amount you can earn. My stepson is, literally, a genius. He could have gone in for any sort of scientific, engineering, computer employment. He works as a carpenter because he couldn’t bear to be inside an office all the time. He was smart enough to know that the most important thing is doing what you want. I work inside, which is fine for me. I am not an outdoor person. But for twenty years I have worked at home. I did the office thing for thirteen years. It was like being locked in an institution for the criminally insane. If I hadn’t got out to work for myself I would have been dead long ago. Here’s to Paul having many more years on the sea.


  9. sandy freel says:

    Wonderful news of Paul feeling better…in time he will be back to work full time doing what he loves the best.
    So happy that he was able to fill his life with the work he enjoyed…
    You are a wonderful caring mate for him….never put yourself down and think you don’t do a good job…cause you do !!


  10. Sandy says:

    I’m relieved Paul is slowly recovering. Sometimes meds create their own separate problems.

    When Paul goes back on the boat to work, would he consider wearing protective headgear? The reason I ask is that for some sailboat races in the midwest a lot of the sailors are wearing sailing helmets. They protect the top, sides and back of the head, while leaving the ears uncovered. It looks good for slip and fall accidents on board.


  11. Bex says:

    Bonnie, we get the algae too, but I go out each day and zap the concrete bird baths with the “jet” setting on the hose and it gets rid of some of it, and I refill them up each day with fresh water. I wonder which the birds prefer – the older algae-ridden water or the newer fresh water (which contains a bit of chlorine which the city adds)… I never know. They use these for both drinking water AND bathing… so I hope they are happy!


  12. Bonnie says:

    Yay Paul, slow and gradual. šŸ™‚ Love your yard, imagine changing bird baths up there may not be as often as down here. We get a lot of algae due to the heat.


  13. WendyNC says:

    Here’s wishing Paul all the best for continued recovery–without further incidents!


  14. I am so glad to hear that Paul is on the path to recovery. Now there is a man who knows what he needs! What a wonderful working life he has had, and what a wonderful personal life he has! Hope you are feeling more relaxed Bex, now that he is on the mend, you had a lot on your plate.


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