As I recall with a memory of joy, relief, and a sense of moving forward, I started this year with a new roof on my house. The old one had blown off in the middle of November, the day after I returned from the hospital with a new knee in place. I chose a red roof for my house; I like it a lot. And now I have a red door to match. It seemed like last December there were lots of strangers coming to my house to give me estimates on the roof and then work on it. In addition there were the physical therapist, the nurse, the bath lady, and others associated with the surgery. Hectic is how I remember it. Shortly after New Year 2012, I was feeling better and faithfully doing my exercises so my leg would get strength and stability. One Sunday morning, the weather was clear, I felt strong, and decided to go to church. En route I was pulled over for speeding on Carson Street. That was the first ticket I ever received, ever. I was crushed and astonished by the $92 price tag that came with it. I was already late for church so I just turned around and came home thinking I was not yet ready for normal activity. I remember wondering if this ticket was an omen for the whole year. Happily, it was not.The next few months were normal, if there is such a thing. I was steadfast in recovering and walking as much as possible because in April I was going to meet my grandson for the first time. A few chapters in my book were written during that time. But, I devoted a lot of effort to learning as much as I could about St. Augustine, Fla., where I would be meeting Hayden, my grandson and vacationing with my son and his wife and, of course, getting to know Hayden. At the airport, Master Hayden came up to me and said, “Are you my Grandma Ann?” I said, “Yes, and I am thinking you are my grandson Hayden, right?” He said, “That’s true, how are you?” He turned 4 in July, so he was already quite the talker and curious about everything. I found him very cute and friendly; we played a game in the hotel where he would hide in the closet and I would say an animal’s name and he would make the sound. Or, he would make the sound of an animal and I would have to guess which one it was. He loved it and trust me when I say it became tricky. Do you know the sound of a skunk, for example? It’s “pew.” We also went swimming and touring this beautiful city. I had a great time and relaxed and enjoyed both the sun and the rain, and loved the beach!Refreshed and invigorated, I returned home to continue living and learning the mysteries life holds for all of us. I also put a new effort and approach into finding some meaningful employment for myself with my limited ability to walk any substantive distance. I had a few students to tutor but that was done on a trade basis. I sent some of my chapters to the Appeal and was invited to write a column on Saturdays. That was the best professional thing that happened to me in 2012. As a result I have met some fantastic people in Carson City whom I enjoy very much. Every week my column brings a call from someone I do not know. I love it. We have become friends and visitors to each other and go out to events. It is a pleasure to meet so many like-minded people in Carson City. I do believe some new people now subscribe to the paper. In October what I recall as the most disgusting campaign season in my lifetime was under way. Not only exorbitant in cost, but overall not effective. I was delighted to become involved with the library proposal and pleased with the truly grass roots effort that resulted in defeat of this frivolous proposal. I find that my slogan for it, “Don’t be Duped by Deceptive Dazzle” works for many situations. I find myself using it often.The tragedies of both Hurricane Sandy and the Sandy Hook School were so pathetically painful; I have stopped just short of unplugging the television. It was a little, quiet Christmas for me and my horrific cold. I am better at long last.And, now as another New Year looms a few days away, the “Scare du Jour” worries me. But I think that “13” is a lucky number. We need to once again become a “United” States of America, One nation, under God... together. We Americans have hearty souls!• Ann Bednarski of Carson City is a career educator and journalist.
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