More To Read at My Website!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

New & Exciting Updates

New And Further Expanded:
  1. iDiscuss @ Home Of Knatchwa Forums - Writing The Creative Process
  2. iCommute @ Home Of Knatchwa - Biking as A life Choice
  3. Bike Journey - Exploring the Journey By Bicycle
  4. And more is coming soon in the not to distant future.
  5. And Always Focus Forward in your Life to grow through it.

Those are only some of the exciting changes that are happening at I know it has been a time since there has been a story here, but another one is coming soon. A good story always is an ongoing process. What do you think would you rather that I share them with you and offer you the opportunity to critique and improve?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Internet Censorship ... Should it happen?

As I was exploring KSBW8's Tweet Feed, there was a series of things that caught my interest in regard to Internet Censorship, besides what looks to be an underlying agenda to share news that is in relation to making that a new story. Another media circus, about how it should be censored and the such. The problem is that the objective of the news is to sell even if it infringes on your rights to Free Flow Of Information from the Internet.

What sells is rarely the good news always the bad news, and censoring the internet is an important issue, anything for the ratings right? Perhaps for the Television stations but you and I of the public at large. What benefit is drawn from that?

Why that is, because we as a people have this want to be aware to find another reason why it does not work as well as it should. We are sold on what the media tells us because we have reached a point of taking it as the only fact. The power of the media is clear, the change that is happening every day is a step by step process ... The new media, that is Youtube, Vimeo, and the many other videos sites and Media Outlets available around the world through the power or the worldwide web. This offers each of us an opportunity to explore something different, to interpret something else besides what the mass media has been selling for all these years. The new media is the first step in making the necessary change to become aware of more then what sells, instead to become aware of what truly matters don't you agree?

Some Additional Resources:

  1. This Topic @
  2. This Video @
  3. Or these articles @
Share your views, what is the consensus?

Beijing Olympics 2008 Gymnastics Competition

After spending another night catching up on the Olympics, I started wondering after the Gymnastics Competition, if the Tie Breaker Between The American Gymnast and Her Chinese Counterpart was judged fairly. Considering that the scores reached a tie, and the tie breaker seems to be where the inconsistency is, Seems by my interpretation the American should of been ranked one not two. What are you thoughts Share them In This Topic on The Forums I am curious what the consensus view is. To me it just does not seem quite right. Then again there is one more opportunity on the balance beam tonight on the Gymnastics. Perhaps it will clear up some things.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Alternative Transportation - To save gas and money

In existence today, in this economy, we in the United States are dealing with, where gas prices have broken records. Good or bad is up for interpretation but let us consider this, that with the increase in gas prices there has been further research in other options, in alternatives to driving the gas guzzling car that seemed so wonderful at the time when gas was almost affordable, and was promoted in that way. Then things changed, the cycle came full circle and the price of petroleum was inflated far beyond affordability, and then what? People drive less because it costs less, car trips are canceled because it would be to expensive to cover the mileage. The inflated price of gas flew through the transportation ideas of today, planes, buses and cars. Suddenly it became more difficult to use any of the favorite modes of point to point travel. The focus changed it was now on Alternatives to Transportation ...

Alternative Transportation is Explored here. Read More ... There are ways to break from the cage.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Life without a car and on two wheels

Gas prices so high, insurance through the roof all the while paying off a car at it's retail value, even though once you drive it off the dealers lot the car loses value and yet you are paying it off at the price of a new vehicle. Just gonna have to work extra, sweat equity while trying to keep pace in a failing economy, sound familiar?

For most individuals who have followed that route have started a vicious cycle, one in which like the rat race also known as a job, is difficult to change. It can be changed by taking some steps in the right direction, it will most certainly be a difficult challenge. Every challenge can be overcome with consistent effort.


Monday, June 30, 2008

SOHH Site Hacked - Prejudice?

What kind of stupidity gives a person a reason to return to the prejudices once thought lost and gone, prejudice today it seems even if thought to have been emancipated still exists. It is a sad Story to say the least, there is much growth we as a society must do to insure awareness of the diversity of our civilization. To explore prejudice as it stands today.

Read More ...

And offer your feed back in the comments.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A dream ... Experienced & Bridged

The day before a graduation of Billy, a fellow solider, one part of a larger class of graduates from a place run by an Psychotic Commander by the name of Eagle Eye, known for being overly aggressive, and a fundamentalist soldier without regard for those he had in his charge. Not usually about the place, and most were happy with that, as he tended to carry with him a deep hatred for anything and everything. His appearance were not usually expected, and regularly a result of some disciplinary action. The site I speak of seemed more like a prison then a place of training, defined officially at least. As a result of that there was some individuals, that would do all they could to get out. On this particular day one individual pulled off an escape that may of been the red flag that brought Eagle Eye. It was certainly strange, how he had escaped, a little person of some sort fired off some kind of explosion, that was just the diversion necessary for his escape and the catalyst that brought about the appearance of the individual most hated and feared.

The strange thing was also in this dream, I was looking for my second boot, that for some reason was missing, the living quarters we were housed in, was chaotic at best, substandard and beyond that. Someone finally tossed me my boot, and then I headed towards my bicycle where I found the seat was missing, the point of all this was to go for a ride to take a break from the insanity that surrounded us. Until all that went down, eventually got everything together, but in the next moment we as a unit are inside like a stand or something with only a small back window of light, although even with the hiding Eagle Eye was able to maneuver the copter close enough to look into our eyes, so far as it goes he is a damn good pilot.

Upon landing the next thing I know I am on the road riding the bike with Billy in front of me heading back to the base, within about 200 feet from my perspective I suddenly see, another of the graduates pick up something and try and explode land mines. after trying to warn us. I could only assume in the ride Eagle Eye had them placed for some odd reason, 200 feet is covered quickly on a bike, and it seemed as if billy was oblivious. He continued his direction of travel and only seconds later there is an explosion of really only fire, otherwise it would of killed him. So after the explosion he continued riding in that direction. Moments passed before the same happened to me, considering this was a dream I would not try this at home. Riding through the fire, I kept pedaling and circling in a figure 8 while he just stood there in the center with what appeared to be a smile. Even though I was burning and logically I should of been in pain, knowing it was a dream made a difference.

Even after the explosion of the mine, I was still riding in the figure 8 and yelling loudly, "Why in the hell, would you do that!?!?!" Cruising around as he stood on his feet not moving, not feeling, only smiling, "You realize Billy is expected to graduate today?!?!?" The last thing I stated was "Answer!?!?!?!?" and it was at this point the yelling of Answer brought me out of the dream and subconscious into the conscious world as if it had been that important!

My sister came upstairs and asked "Did you say something?" and I answered "Yeah just a crazy dream." her last comment was great, she said "You should write about it." and so I did. I wonder if that was the reason it bridged the gap between the sub conscious and the conscious mind. Or simply that it was so insane, as mindless as it was, as without reason or objective that this character Eagle Eye did without thinking just doing. To use an explosive device, fully aware of what it could do stuck me so deep, could of very well stopped what otherwise is a great time for Billy, A moment of growth, a springboard, in a new direction, into a better reality for a brighter future. What do you think? Let me Know in the Comments.

Friday, June 20, 2008

The Story Continues

To consider the last time I entered something here was in in the trial, at this point after all has been said and done the deliberation has begun, the journey as it is ongoing, this aspect offering a whole new learning curve, remarkable as it is. The process in itself is a learning process, through it I have learned much and have had the opportunity to explore the characters of the people who are also a part of the entire journey. Truly remarkable, and yet even without that things constantly change, life goes on many would say. It is what you do with it and when that makes the difference. So it continues on and as I look at it closely I realize how much more it relates to the Focus Forward Project that I constantly find myself living and exploring. Perhaps not a story but an intro for what is to come.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Jury Duty - A reflection So Far...

Another day comes and goes, additional hours pass, lunch once again, things change in life and in living. Sometimes life presents a series of unfortunate events, as is the case here and now. The ongoing journey that it is in infinite cycles, of ups and downs. An ongoing event, multi-faceted to remain objective, to explore both sides of the argument to reach an unbiased decision, to grow through, making the best call in a difficult game where the burden of proof must prevail and yet only founded on reasonable doubt, the legal language can be confusing though it is part and partial to this process, the legal process skewed or blind dependent on the best argument, whoever is the most influential the one who makes the best argument moral or otherwise. The final decision with a group of unique individuals holding their own view on the preceding.

To wonder where you go from there in an understanding, the insanity of the process. Following legal definition whatever that may be. Such a crazy process, and yet so necessary for what is termed a "fair trial by jury." Nothing like the wonders of the numerous shows that jumped the bandwagon of supposed Super Sleuths who get everything done in thirty minutes to an hour and line up another shortly thereafter, a false idea a preconceived notion with a false understanding of the actual process thinking everything is cut and dry, black and white. Such false understanding even if wrong could be held. The same point when the decision must be made, whether the individual is guilty and sentenced as such what then would depend on the charges, how serious and by definition is the consequence for heinous charges, whatever the charge may be.

How confusing, how insane it can be, attempting to find a jury who holds no bias, how difficult it must be then to not speak of it, until deliberation, until the final point whereby such a conversation officially and legally can take place.

So goes the story, the tale of one juror exploring reality and its process in comparison to the false ideas of a lost medium. In the world today, with a new medium taking it's place with the internet being seen as the one solid medium with an immense variety of views more realistic? Perhaps if only an idea, that is from the people without the censorship. Without limitation yet still biased in their own view.

What is fact? What exactly is fiction? The choice lies with each of us in this world, to make up your own mind, to choose what you believe. Is that the true purpose of trial by jury? Or is it just another modified view from the people based on the evidence, the only truth? Perhaps if you decide to take it as such or is that the only real speculation? You were given free choice, without bias? Maybe if you had no outside influence, the fact is we each grew up and in that process a belief system was formed, do you think that skewed your mind?

Or can you truly be unbiased no matter the seriousness of the trial, can you remain unaffected, no matter the emotions that flow as you sit in that chair? Or is it in the fact that we are each human, that makes it near impossible to truly be unbiased? What do you think, what evidence do you offer that we each can be as blind as justice appears to be? Or is the legal system more confusing then clear? The choice is yours share your view in the comments.

Monday, May 26, 2008

SEO Optimization or Great Writing?

SEO Optimization or Great Writing?

SEO Optimization, over proper writing technique, is Helium presenting the wrong view? A great story is written for the sake of the readers enjoyment, to share with the world at large, something you feel strongly about...


Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Mint Green Cadillac

A recurring entity in my dreams, a reoccurring theme. The Green Cadillac that can go through walls usually a result of evil, an evil within perhaps. A turning of a device in a indistinguishable garage somewhere. There is really no time period, time of year it just reappears, reaffirms itself in my mind through my dreams. What is the message, what does this mint green Cadillac mean? To unlimit self, in the fact this vehicle can go through walls, to look outside the box, beyond the here and now? So what is the idea, the primary message of this mint green convertible Cadillac? It is an older model, in the days that the cadillac's were huge, powerful, the 50's 60's somewhere around that time.

A mint green cadillac convertible, what does it represent? Is it a baseline, for a truly great story? One to formulate, to publish, to make a splash as an instant masterpiece? A necessary springboard into tommorow, into a new chapter in my life the first step into a great publishing feature. The question, as a result of evil this entity appears and often is difficult to remove though it can be done, as the character has done so before. The sense that it was not completely eradicated, as it once more appears, when I have not dreamed of it in so long. Seems the logical result, is it must be removed, completely? Perhaps dependant on what it represents. A subconcious mind is an amazing thing, it speaks of possibilities, open for interpretation. The possibilities that are underlying, that which cannot be eradicated, cannot be removed until it is dealt with and overcome. It is like a hunger that if not satisfied will consume you. So I wonder, I look at it, I try and interpret the amazing message my subconcious mind is trying to get across. Perhaps it is the interpretation of evil, of something that goes against the moral majority, that goes against the way I was raised. Something lost but never found, constantly resurfacing, telling me to make that change to understand it and overcome it.

Perhaps that is exactly the point, the reason this dream reoccurs, this dreams constant resurgence. Something, deep within past lives or the present one that has never really been resolved, never been dealt with. The wonders of dreams, the astounding creativity that is apparent when such boundaries are lifted. When you sleep, there is no external influence, nothing that tries to limit your thinking. It is the unlimitting of possibilities, through dreams so much can occur, to take the time to remember, to be livid, to know in that moment you are dreaming and to take control, to explore this unlimited space to stretch beyond self imposed limitations. The possibilities are truly limitless, to grasp this power, this awareness within a dream, within a journey so intense. It is not only the good dreams but all dreams, as each has a message, as each has an objective in our own self improvement. It is merely a matter of both you and me, realizing, grasping and following through to see the possibilities as truly endless, the opportunities abound. What do you think, your own dreams, taking the time to understand, to comprehend the important message your body is trying to tell you will you explore it? Will you instead try to run in fear, to not have to deal with being uncomfortable even if that is the only way to make the change that is so important in your life. The journey we are each on, to make that choice to make a difference, will you?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A Tale Coming Soon

A great story takes time...while patience is a virtue, explore the other writings:
The New Site revised and improved for your reading pleasure.

Friday, April 11, 2008

A New Story

As it has been a long time since I put together a story here, I ask you to be patient, because another one is coming soon. In time a book, an ebook of course. Once that moment passes you will see it was worth the wait.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Reflections of a Writer

In Relation To Existence

So much was planned for this day, lofty goals under ideal circumstances. To reach for the stars and grasp the moment. To write, in this life or the next, beginning today is better then tomorrow. To start to write expecting to finish, things change sometimes. As I begin the process of writing the plan was the same, follow through being the key to the lock of progress. Though in all honesty nothing is ever that cut and dry or that simple. Proven on this day for as I begun searching for the topic, for the story to write in this moment, one particular item caught my interest, a short story, on vacation, the first thing coming to my mind was a trip taken back in January of 1999 for a wedding, a train trip, cross the country. The experience what a story it would make, a short story though. Well, it seemed to be a more appropriate novel consisting of in depth detail building on a character only as a persona in my mind. Such was the case a story based on experience a character a thought in my mind.

You see I was the only one from my immediate family who could make it to this wondrous event, the marriage of a sister barely a year older then myself. The prospect exciting, and of interest for it would be the first time to travel by train Coast to Coast during the Winter of 1999. You know the supposed end of the world and all that.

I could bring in the new year in Florida at least that was the plan. Sorry to say it did not happen, but the experience did, perhaps in this coming year when 2009 comes about I will have the opportunity to enjoy a New Year in a different state then California. No offense to California I have lived here most of my life, born and dare say raised, in this great state of ours. To enjoy such a momentous occasion in a another place and time seems to be a wonderful goal to strive for.

To realize the fact that it seemed to be the right time, the near perfect moment. I had worked hard and had earned enough for such a undertaking from jobs I was working. I must admit the fact that really it was not that much money, though it was cash not credit, and it was worth just being able to attend both the bachelor party and the wedding and the events thereafter.

It worked out quite well though, one story, one creative event, simply put it was Quality over Quantity, a simple principle, sometimes the most difficult as it were to choose quantity over quality. The story was started but not finished this day. A great story is rarely wrote in one day. A masterpiece, should I be so bold to coin the term, takes much time and moments of inspiration put together over time. Besides for myself at least I tend to get frustrated for lack of activity even when writing. The initial plan you see had been to also ride my bike for the breaks between sessions in writing, with the rain falling upon the beaten ground it was decided that it would be better not to ride at least on this day. Understand that for me I work towards balance of work and play, a Libra that I be perhaps that is appropriate, seeks such balance in their life.

Certainly it is true I enjoy writing as I share my views on a daily basis, often the best writing done when you take the moments away to inspire. The time away allowing free movement of the thoughts and ideas as they relate to life and living, to the story at hand.

Simple as it may seem, it is not easy to write a story. It will stretch the mind, a hand may cramp, it is up to you and I to overcome those moments, to use them as fuel in your ongoing masterpiece that is life.

Write another chapter, finish one more sentence, complete just one more page, overcome the challenges faced in the race from place to place. Life's journey explored, experienced and made the best of, hit those curves beyond the gate, know the choice is yours alone not fate. It is up to you to make the best of your life, in the short time we exist in Father Times' great playground. Make the best of it, life lived to the fullest is truly life lived. Take the reigns and ride to enjoy the wonders of life's great excursion.

Thanks for reading ... and as always Forward Focus for life lived to its fullest.

Monday, February 4, 2008

2008 a year of Change?

Either we are going to have our first black president or our first female, neither one of which has ever happened in so many years. So truly 2008 is going to be a year of change of a truly pivotal time in history. Why now, this particular year?

Seven years it has been since the events of 911 changed the world, for better or worst that is a decision you need to make. Three years since Hurricane Katrina hit and decimated New Orleans, known for Mardi Gras, also known as Fat Tuesday. After Katrina little remained of this famous town, and that was only three years ago.

What is it about 2008, that makes it such a time for change? Can you really come to an answer on that? It is hard to say, when I thought about it though I found it quite intriguing. After 30 minutes of meditation and the time after of thought. I wondered, and I started to write, for a moment sleep was on my mind and now once I have started it is more difficult to stop when you are inspired. Though I must say sleep is a fine idea. For now will start with this and will continue later.
Further Reading can be found here
to be continued

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Kindler Gentler Cleansing of Society

A story from a dream, written and remembered.

Two men, from another state, another place, coming here to try to bring Hitler's view on cleansing, to the society of today. A different name perhaps but same general idea, the technique different in its own way, instead of provoking fear, and bringing about an army, these two figured they would keep it a bit more stealthy, somewhat under the radar. Using a plant, that with one prick its poison would knock the afflicted out in a matter or seconds and they would sleep for hours. Not wholly lethal but effective in stopping any resistance from a person at a time. Therefore it was necessary to always be stealthy in each attack and make sure it is pointed and takes care of the challenge one by one. Effectively quiet and cunning working together in unison. Making it all that much more difficult, to thwart. And so they went, one by one, until they come to one specific house, the home of one not so spectacular individual, one who was just realizing the potential of life and living. Existing for the moment, just working the job, you know like the world tells you to. Within this person though, was a realization, an internal frustration, looking at his life, and seeing beyond where he was at that time. It was this internal frustration, this constant gnawing, of this limited existence. The fact that he knew, there was more to life then that. After so much loss in the year previous he decided long due for a change, so maybe not all that common , of suddenly he heard the breaking of a window. He was not in the common area of the house so it was thought no one was home.

Friday, January 25, 2008

2008 And It's Beginning

With 2007 in the past I was looking forward to a more exciting 2008, with not so much loss or pain. And for a bit all seemed to be doing well, until just today, well officially yesterday my grandmother, my lola, my grandma had a heart attack, that put her in an altered state, one in which she can only move here eyes and her mouth somewhat. With a tube down her throat to help her breathe. All seemed well until this evening when my uncle, my tito, had called the house to let us know the news. The possibility of death looming, and we should come see her tonight to make sure to see her if all goes bad, and she passes in the night. Once the news was clear we debated on who would go, as we have so many pets someone needed to stay here to watch them, well at least the kitten. She is a sweet kitten surely, but she also tends to get in to alot of trouble. After some decisions being made the consensus was that my sister would watch them while the rest of the family and I would go for the two hour ride to go and see my grandmother. To just see if she was conscious enough to respond to any inquiry we may bring.

As some of you may know from experience when a grandparent is in Intensive Care you should be concerned. She is fortunate to be alive surely but the question is what type of existence will it be come tommorow, or next week? Or will it be an existence at all? In the simplest terms in that situation is a time when you should be most concerned particularly with one you love so dearly as your Grandmother. She has lived a full life certainly all of 84 years and survived dialysis as defined in regard to liver, it has been said few survive after the first 5 years of dialysis, my grandmother on the other hand has been dealing with it for 10 years now. It can be said honestly she is a strong women, stubborn as all hell in life and in living. I am proud to say that I gained part of that via my mother but that is another story. As a strong woman, a survivor my grandmother has been through so much and came out all the stronger each time, it is safe to say if only in part she is my inspiration on the Focus Forward Project I have been putting together. It was tough to see her as she was but good to know that she is a survivor, I just hope for all the best for her and the family that I call my own that she survives this up and coming year.

The saying goes though, Expect the worst but hope for the best, a simple quote but so true in such a situation as this, I can hold in my heart that she will come out all the stronger but also must be prepared for the inevitable end to a life fully lived that left an impression on me and my family. Short and sweet, how you can define this post but I would rather use that same view as I remember my grandmother, my lola, and just hope that January 2008 is not the end but the beginning, perhaps of a different type of journey who knows?

Thanks for Reading

It is sad to say that she passed this day my lola, shall she rest in peace and enjoy her journey to the next existence. She did much for the family, and as strong as she was I have always looked up to her even though she is a bit shorter then me. :) I am just glad she no longer has to deal with the pain, and the suffering existence in pain, an attempt at extending life, and so it did, just for a bit. In 84 years, she has seen alot and done alot now she may rest for she will be remembered in this generation and the many to come.

Thanks for Reading

Monday, January 21, 2008

Why I stay up to the early hours of the morning.

For myself, sometimes I seem most receptive to creative energy in these early morning hours. It is in those moments I have the opportunity to focus, clarity of the juncture in the deep silence each morning. Besides the fact that as of late it has become a constant, a habit formed by a choice made. It is these hours from 2a until 5a in the silence of a sleeping home, all but me, experience REM sleep. These hours I often become more receptive to the possibilities and more apt to think as the writer that I am. Receiving the abundant creative energy through my undertakings. As the hours pass one by one it seems some of my best compositions are a result of this silence.

Whether it be interpretive the fact is reinforced when I review the writings so meticulously compiled, articles or stories, as I review the message within each. Perhaps it is just the silence, the eternal quiet, that enables the ability to become my focal point in hours otherwise reserved for sleep. Thoughts and ideas readily apparent, of the words not said, otherwise ideas that are dear to my basic principles in life and living. As I focus forward and put the plan into action these same principles become a foundation for the articulate story to be as I continue with my project. Future Focus for those who I care about now and those who are not yet a part of this world, the generations to come. My hope, my goal, is that one day in the near future as one more generation comes into being, that these writings will serve as guidelines for a life lived fully. For those in generations to come to strive to excellence, to once again put the plan to action and do.

Those who I care for, who I have touched in one way or another, are and will continue to be my inspiration, for the hours spent at the keyboard, for the time writing on the paper. Those who I have touched and those who I shall touch as time moves forward. To truly make a difference in their chosen life, to plant a seed and observe as it comes to fruition. A legacy that will last the generations now and then. That is my journey, a choice made a curve ball hit out of the park, a life aspiration under constant improvement. Making a difference in the life of those who I care deeply about, and those who I care for if only in passing.

To persist in my life aspiration, is the very least I can do for those who have known me and have yet to know me. Day in and day out, all the hours morning evening or afternoon. I can only hope, by reading this I will touch your heart & soul, so you to can be my inspiration to keep on keeping on through the ups and downs of the roller coaster of life. Focus Forward and Grow with Me. The future is bright and in you reading this it becomes brighter by the moment.

Thanks for your time and your thoughts and comments are appreciated.

- Ray 0552 012108

Sunday, January 13, 2008

2008 has Arrived

A new year, and exciting beginning what to do with it, what to write about it even though it has just begun, time still passes and life is constantly lived, day by day. I could look at it as part of looking back. This same time in this last year, Panda a kind tuxedo cat passed a bit earlier then it was expected, aspirin and animals do not work together to well. The consequence of giving a cat aspirin only one time was apparent once the cat died. The aspirin does not move through the system quickly enough for an animal to handle it so in the simplest terms she was poisoned but not intentionally. It is a sad story but still the ashes remain from this loving cat near my mothers bed in her room, still today.

That was January it came and it ended, on a sad note, though it was also a time for celebration as my sister had been married, eight years on the 16th of this month. one of the more high notes of this new year of 2008. In the end we survived January and through February, with not to many incidents. March went off without a hitch or at least that is the story to tell.

Interesting to note, that February through March I was in Cincinnati, Ohio staying with a friend. So when Panda passed I only heard about it did not see it occur. Though I was glad it did not get any more insane in that month.

Survival of the fittest it has been said, and the first quarter of the year has come and gone the pets we have today still survive, with a few additions besides. When Fluffy passed, early on this year it was thought there would not be another like him and still there is not as the story goes, he was an amazing animal, it is to bad he had to die so early on in his existence. Once he had passed and the initial pain dissipated, fortunately Mona was found and brought into the home. To help my mother cope with the pain of loss of something that is so dear as Fluffy was to her.

And as the year progressed, April to June, July to August and September through October all was well, once November came around things changed once more. Not for the better I am sorry to say, The beginning of the month all is fine, seems like it will be a great holiday, fluffy will have his first holiday experience, we will all come together once more as a family, or at least that was the initial plan. As tends to occur, things change, and some for the better while others for the worst.

The days moved on coming closer and closer to Thanksgiving, the holiday expected to be a celebration of plenty, the history goes, as a event of remembrance of the pilgrims and the indians coming together for a feast. In thankfulness it exists, and the expectation is usually the same, dinner with family, spending time with in laws and all the fun thus associated. A gluttonous feast on a bird and its stuffing, food aplenty, stomachs not up to the task.

We sit, eat, talk and eat some more, all seems to be going as expected, until my cell phone rings just as I was finishing my third plate. Its my sister, she had called, knowing that she should call in only an emergency whether person or pet. I answered as you would expect, I needed a break from the food anyway. We started talking, and she says, "it is an emergency Fluffy is dead, he got stuck in the gate and I tried to help him out! He finally came out but he was bleeding out his nose and ears. I did not know what to do." as was my duty I had to share the information with my mother, the fact that the kitty, who for the first time this year, nearing the holiday season had died unexpectedly. On the day of supposed thankfulness, instead it was a day that will live on in infamy. Such a small kitten to die so suddenly, so sad and heartbreaking, he was once a near farrow kitty, born to a stray living with my stepfathers mother along with six or seven other cats mostly farrow. One of which was sick by the name of Kitty Kat, feline aids an elder male cat, along with Daisy an Older Cat, lived most of her life outdoors but succumbed to domestication certainly by choice. Besides daisy there was about five other felines on that property and now there is none.

Immediately after becoming aware of the news we departed far earlier then we usually would, there was crying and much sadness about the vehicle as we traveled the two hours back home. When we had covered at least thirty minutes of the ride back we stopped and it was requested that I call the house and see if there was any way we could get the kitty to the hospital. Thanksgiving, of course no one is open but an emergency clinic a full thirty minutes from the house and without a car that becomes a lot more. I had done some searching on my cell phone for emergency animal services and had received some information from the local police department. The problem was the fact that my sister did not have a car at home so unless I could find someone to give her a ride there was no way she could get the kitty to where he needed to be. It donned on me, a neighbor of ours a few houses down, has seven kitty's in her home, and I had a cell phone number for one of the sisters in the house, the possibility came to mind that maybe, one way or another she could help the situation if even just a little bit. Rapidly I put my plan into action, dialed the number and was fortunate that at least one of the sisters answered. I explained the situation best I could to her, and asked if she could at least check on the kitten. There was no car available sorry to say but there was that one thing I could do is at least have her check on my sister as I am sure even beyond the passengers in the car, she was in disarray, confused, sad, hurt, unsure. Many things traveling through her mind at the same time at a very high pace. Panic, confusion, hard to say what she was feeling at the moment, perhaps just shock, as such things tend to occur in your own mind in light of such emotional situations. Eventually after I was put on hold as she walked over to my sister and the house, she confirmed the suspicion, that surely there was no way to save the kitten now, Fluffy's' life had ended. I did all I could but was not able to save the kitten, perhaps only help my sisters sanity by having someone there to comfort her after all was said and done.

There passed November, a loss over a holiday, and the coming home to a lifeless corpse of a once active kitten, we buried him eventually a few days later in the same house that he had been born, a hole deep in the backyard besides an aging garage and overhanging willow, in a box in the ground resting soundly forever. To be only remembered in memory and in pictures may he rest in peace. Perhaps in rebirth, he will be in a home, to experience the holidays, not as fluffy perhaps but as the once farrow cat that found a home even if for a very short span of time. His spirit lives on in my heart as well as the hearts of my family. Regardless the pain of loss, it seems it is better he ventured onto the spirit realm. So that chapter in this year comes to an end or does it? November had passed, Christmas was coming and a the New Year 2008 was right around the corner.

Once we had overcome the loss, and had buried that sweet kitten, it seems almost immediately, we acquired another kitten, this time from the SPCA in Monterey County, her name Mona a sweet tortoise shell kitty. Recently she just enjoyed her first holiday season in our home. Though fluffy will never be forgotten Mona is surely a blessing. She has helped my mother overcome some challenging times, and she has come out better for it.

So November passes with a loss, December comes around and all seems well, until a letter is received, addressed to my sister, informing her that our Grandfather Bill, has passed the 12th of December, he had been a part of the family for so long recently I had gone and visited him along with my Aunt Sharon in Oregon, at the time he seemed well, I will admit though, I should of seen him recently. When I look back I wish I could of been there for him in his last days, but as it goes things don't always go how you want them too. Learning through letter as my divorced father felt it necessary, it was just another hit on an already difficult season. I think about it, and perhaps his liver finally gave out. For so many years of drinking are not without there consequences. He had been clean for quite some time, my guess is, that even though he had stopped drinking the damage had already been done it just caught up with him. So December twelve days before Christmas my Grandfather passes. Sadness, hurt, becoming far to common in this year 2007, which is why I can only hope that 2008 turns out for the better.

With his loss, though sad, Christmas was just about here, things almost started looking up until, my stepfathers mother, Alice passes in her sleep. I cannot say I knew her well but I knew her nonetheless, I had helped in fixing the kitchen floor in her home while she was in the hospital recovering, advanced diabetes was the culprit here. At the very least she died in her sleep, no pain just an endless nap. She lived a full life nearing 90 years, it is to bad it had to end before she reached 100. I must admit, besides fluffy, that was the only funeral I attended. What a funeral it was, a storm in Salinas, the worst in so many years, pouring rain and blowing wind upwards of 40-50 mph. Her place of rest a graveyard on the top of a hill only a few miles from this home. I attended yes, but it seemed so appropriate that at the hour of the final burial the storm seemed to be at its worst, making it nearly impossible to stand as the wind blew furiously and the rain not falling down but sideways, and later what felt like hail. All of this as Alice was laid to rest the final time in a grave upon a hill. The family I knew little of, understood less of, I joined for a feast at a local restaurant. A restaurant where a previous co worker of mine now called her career. I met the family from all walks of life and throughout the west coast of the United States, it was odd, seeing as the first time I met them was at a moment of such sadness. What brought them together, was the death of someone they loved dearly.

Once all was said and done and Christmas finally arrived, so much had happened so close to the end of the year, you could say it truly was a year that will live on in infamy, a time of loss.

We come to the New Year, 2008, looking back realizing, that even with the loss there was still much to be thankful for. Difficult to see the light at the end of such a dark tunnel. The choice must be made to see what is good, remember what is sad, to focus forward is certainly a choice. Even with loss one cannot live in the past, and so I made that choice, I chose to put my focus forward and to make 2008 the best year ever.

Thanks for Reading, And I wish you the best in this new year.