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Thursday, September 5, 2013

New Passport

My passport arrived. I paid $60 extra bucks to have it expedited because I procrastinated thirteen months before renewing. After I opened the delivered passport, I was shocked to see a picture of an old lady on the photo page.  My last two IDs carried a sweet image of my wild thirty-something years. The guy at the post office agreed it was time to update that woman to a more representational rendering of my current self. He took a picture on the spot.
I think there is too much reality. However in twenty years or so, it will look good to me.
Once again, I am papered to fly away to corners of the globe not yet explored by me. Holding a passport gives me the same feeling of freedom as renewing my driver’s license and vehicle registration. Infinite possibilities occur when one is legal to leave the city, state, country, and continent. Oh how I love to travel. 
Up first is Ireland. The pretty green island is home to one-quarter of my ancestry and one-half of my late husband’s. There is a reason why chose Ireland as my maiden trip. I will save that for when I get closer to the trip date of October 6th.  Instead, let me tell you the story Uncle John brought back from Ireland a decade ago.
The O’Neils (Neil-my ancestors) and the O’Dwyers (Dwyer-Paul’s ancestors) lived in the same county. A dispute had grown over a spit of land between the two clans. Rather than fight a bloody war the chiefs decided to have a foot race to determine who truly owned the hill. 
On the top of the knoll grew an ancient tree. The two men agreed to run to the top of the hill and the first one to touch the tree would be the winner.
Both clans came out for the event. Music, food and spirits were shared by all. With a drop of a scarf, the race started and the two chiefs ran hard up the hill. First O’Dwyer led then O’Neil then O’Dwyer. It was clear that O’Dwyer would win as he had taken a commanding lead. O’Neil pulled his sword and lopped off his own left hand. He threw it past O’Dwyer and smacked it against the tree thus winning the contest.
This is why the tartan for the O’Neils is a bloody fist on a field of green and the O’Dwyers is a field of black.
This is true because Uncle John heard it told in an Irish pub in Cork.
Today’s Menu:
Breakfast: ½ c Raisin Bran w/almond milk & strawberries.  Coffee with agave syrup and almond milk.
Snack: Strawberry & Rhubarb cake with decaf Earl Grey Tea at Panera Bread El Camino.
Lunch: Subway 6 inch wheat bun veggie sandwich with no dressings, oils or cheese. Jamica tea from Beto’s Tacos. I love Jamica tea. It’s made from Hibiscus flowers. So yummy.
Snack: 4 Marshmallow Cookies.  I was weak.
Dinner: One soy corn dog and salad 
Snack: Water. I ate the cookies and the cake earlier. Bad day for calories and sugar.