It is definitely different – this July.  For almost everyone, travel is out.  For most, beaches are out. For many, the mood is constantly changing, from gloomy to hopeful; from resigned to not knowing what lies ahead to intense curiosity about the changes that lie ahead.

Meanwhile, we have more time than ever to read, to write, and to watch our home screens. What are you reading and watching these days? Please tell us and help us expand each other’s possibilities. Most helpful would be knowing why or how whatever you are reading or watching seems related to how you are experiencing these days of upheaval.

Personally, I can’t wait to finally get to see Hamilton, with the original cast, this weekend!

P.S. We just learned that we were named one of Healthline’s “Best Senior Blogs of the Year.” I want to thank every one of you who reads and especially those who write here. It is you who deserve the award.

Yes this is a unique July. I view it in a positive sense. I have found that at my age 85, my world has grown smaller and smaller. The aches and pains that chase after me remind me that I am human and am passing into newer and better world. My brain and emotions have come alive and what a joy in looking at a young mother pushing her precious baby in the park. This visage of eternal love brings new life to me. The sight of a new flower growing beautiful and healthy in the warm July sun reminds me of passions once flowing through my own body and soul in my earlier years. But most of all, I now can retreat into my soul and thank God for my life and the miracle of the wonderful journey I have had the privilege to live and love in.

What’s different on this 4th? Really, when you think back, every 4th is different. I’ve given up bungy jumping, rebuilding my cars, camping in the wild, and collecting stray children. Turning 88 did have some bearing on my choices. So, what does this 4th encompass? Dust bunny chasing, ring removal, that’s toilets not diamonds, turning a 10 lb bag of russet potatoes into individual freezable dinner delights. Stuffed, scalloped, smashed and friables, ready to go. Hint, putting smashed potatoes in muffin pans, freeze, then bag is perfect for a quick dinner for one. I do the same for gravy. Faster than a speeding bullet, a gourmet dinner. My reading/ listening consists of real news, fake news, and behind the curtain news. Believe it or not there are small golden nuggets of truth to be found with my jaundice eye of course. I have become the ‘go to’ person for research on drugs and ills for friends and family. Just call me Dr Jung. (sick joke) With a quick change of hats I become a Wall Street Guru chasing the next big 10 bagger! Things I never had time for. I have this addiction to learning and now, the time to go down paths and explore what ever. I never know what tomorrow will bring…like ‘Alice going down the rabbithole hole’.

I have many thoughts on this different July – some about being part of the “older adult community” that is vulnerable to “the virus”, the situation in PA nursing homes, and much about how this crisis has shed a broad light on all the ways our country has failed to consider the needs of everyday citizens regardless of who they are, and in particular our Black community.  I doubt I have anything to say/blog that hasn’t already been said by so many.  I am heartened by the current level of engagement we are seeing, and from the bottom of my heart I hope that we will sustain this early momentum. It is a daunting task in front of us on so many levels. I just finished reading White Fragility and currently reading Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates.  Definitely both worth reading and reflecting upon, and hopefully discussing new insights about how our country has structured itself. Even as an “enlightened” woman, I have so much to learn, think about and DO.
We should celebrate our country on the 4th, not for who we have been, but for what we stand for and how we will live our lives in support of a true democracy.  Our forefathers were far from perfect, but they had a new vision that has yet to be fulfilled.  That doesn’t mean it won’t be.
So Happy July 4th and wishing you a nice relaxing summer.

I discovered the author Emily Giffin and love her style of writing. As a writer, my reading choices are as much about the style as the story. Our TV viewing centers around anything different from the news – escape. We discovered Upload on Amazon. I describe it as a comedy Sci Fi with the cleverness of Harry Potter. Not usually Sci Fi people, but my husband and I LOL with this one.