By 2012, though I still had hopes for my draft of BeakSpeak, I realized I’d been duped into thinking I was living my “golden years.” As a friend of mine, just a tad older than I, once said, “now that our parents are gone, Peggy, you do realize, don’t you, that we are sitting on the front row?” It doesn’t intimidate me that I’m nearing the end of my life. What bothers me is all that I’ve lost and what I’ve lost the ability to do. My greatest bane, at the time, was my back. It was headed for osteoporosis, like my mom, grandmother and grandfather. At that, two of them had severe scoliosis. How could I continue to work a farm disabled to that degree?
So, when I finally had my fill of scorpions stinging me, wild hogs rooting up my hay field, chickens suffering from stick-fast fleas, fences falling down, and a back disabling me completely, I sold the Double Bar M. I was too old and sick to manage the adversity anymore. Bob sold Freckles for me to two nice boys in Giddings who won show ribbons with him, and I gave Legacy to my vet in Seguin, Scott Bugai. He had a ranch with plenty of other horses to keep Legacy company. This pic is of Bob working with one of his horses
I sold the place pretty quickly for my asking price, then built a nice home across the street from friends on the north side of Canyon Lake. It’s comfortable. I can still have a garden if I enclose it to ward off the deer, coons and birds. Chiggers out the wahzoo, though.
I enjoy watching the beautiful deer and am ashamed I ever killed one. Aging makes you appreciate life, no matter the creature living it. Even though I’m happy my chickens live on in BeakSpeak, thanks to Kathleen Shields, I bemoan losing all my precious cats over the years: Tabatha, Mandy, Deuter, Gen, Karl, Percy, Tandy and my only Manx, Putter. Tandy and Putter are buried here. I had to leave the others in Seguin. i wonder if the buyers realize yet the front yard is a pet cemetery? The following are pics of Tandy and Putter.
I’ve also lost my youth, my silliness, my swagger, and my ability to drive my RV down to Rockport-Fulton’s Goose Island State Park, where I loved to park at a cabana, cast my line into the bay, sit in a lawn chair all night and day, and never tire of listening to the gulls screeching for me to throw them dead bait. I would eventually have to sell the RV, too, because I was having trouble reaching down and back into the bay areas. I miss, I miss, I miss.
Now my life is comprised of doctors’s appointments, water color classes, Mexican Train games, golf (when the weather and molds allow), enjoying Addy and trips, now and again, by car, plane and cruise lines. I did get my lumbar spine fused in 2014 and made one more trip by RV before I had to sell it, and that was to the Outer Banks of North Carolina where I caught a couple of bull reds off the coast of Cape Hatteras.
In 2016 Dr. Kuwamura followed up my lumbar fusion with a cervical fusion, so now I have a cage and screws in my neck. Still, I can swing a golf club as well as I always did: badly. 🙂 I can still also promote BeakSpeak and fish. I have a lung condition now that requires me to be on a nebulizer and wear an air clearance vest that vibrates my chest and back for twenty minutes, optimally, three times a day. Aside from that, I try to see my siblings when we can get together. Life is complicated. They are busy with families, and I am busy with taking care of myself and looking for opportunities to promote BeakSpeak. I know I’ll never get rich with my little book, but it pleases me it is finally is out there, because I believe in my little chickens and their message. Aside for helping it become more “in demand,” I’m hoping someday my cat, Addy, will cuddle like Putter did.
This is probably the best time to get the conversation off of me and onto teaching children, like BeakSpeak does. Children are our future, and their success in language will enhance their life skills. So, since I introduced nouns last time, let’s talk about linking verbs. Linking verbs do just what they say. They link the word that comes after them to the nouns that precede them. All you have to know is that linking verbs belong in the “be” family: be, being, been, am, is, are, was and were, as well as that any word that can replace them and have the sentence mean the same thing. Examples: Walt is a bully. “Is” is a linking verb because bully reflects back to Walt. Sue feels hurts. “Feels” is the same thing as “is” so feels is a linking verb making hurt reflect back to Sue. Jayne was rude. “Was” is a linking verb because rude reflects back to Jayne.