Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Lent

Ahh, the parades are over and we can get back to life. Well, life during Lent at least. The 40 days Jesus spent in the desert praying and fasting before his crucifixion. Many moons ago Lent was taken very seriously. Not that some don't take it seriously - it just seems to have become a big party/parade/drunken feast. That saddens me. Lent was taken so seriously when my grandmother was young that the theaters closed. And no parties were held. And likewise, no weddings or baptisms.

Many people don't realize that Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday) is based on the Catholic faith. Before Lent started the people would feast on Tuesday because during Lent you fasted and prayed and no meat is eaten on Ash Wednesday or on Fridays during Lent. So they gobbled up all the food they could. Thus, Fat Tuesday. The parades? Masked riders would get on horseback and go around from house to house asking for items - rice, chickens, eggs, flour, oil, spices, etc., and they would use these things to make a huge gumbo for all to enjoy at the end of the ride. People would sit on their porches and wait for the riders to come by. They'd gather and play music and pass a good time before Lent started. Ya gotta get that all outta ya system there, before Lent. Can't be having nun-a-dat!

Now they have floats instead of horses and music on floats instead of on porches and they throw stuff at you instead of ask for stuff. Lots of changes.

The kids asked to go to the parade. We went. It rained. They asked to leave. They said it was horrible. They wanted it to be like it was when they were little. I tried to explain that it was always like this and that as little kids they didn't notice all they notice now. Next year I'll have to make it a point to take them to the Crewe of Barkus Parade (parade of dogs and other animals) and the Children's Parade. I think they'll enjoy that.

Tonight we rushed to the gym in order to make it to mass to get our ashes. The ashes are a symbol or a reminder that with Jesus's death we start anew. A new life. He died for us. When we die we turn to ashes. After his crucifixion we were saved and now have eternal life. I hope this makes sense. Father explains it so much better. I'm tired and sore and not thinking straight.

We had a good time at the gym. The girls did weights, Daniel played basketball and walked with me some on the track and I walked the track. Felt really good. My mind is clear when I leave. I feel like I've worked my body. My mind gets worked all day. Today was a particular shitty day. Not often I have one of those but when I do they are pretty horrible. It's not often I complain about my job. Not often at all. I really like my job. But today was very stressful. Lots of mumbling or speed speaking doctors. The exercise gave me time to clear my head and release some stress.

My shin splints didn't last near as long and I was able to make a full mile. Oh yah, giggle if you must at my mile. But I did it. And while to some of you that may not seem like much, it's a lot for the gal who sits in this chair day in and day out and never gets any exercise.

I was jamming away with MP3 player. That is THE best thing at the gym. I get totally lost in the music and before I know it I've been walking waaaay longer than I thought. I had that lil box cranked up and was cruising. No skips, no scratches - just pure musical bliss. I had to skip thru a few songs that were just too slow but for the most part I had a good mix. Funny how music can get you going.

Tomorrow Rich gets to join us. I think the kids are gonna swim too. Maybe a dip in the heated pool after walking is just what I need!

Time for bed. All this exercise makes me tired!

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