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Articles written by Sondra Ashton

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 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: I have nothing to say

Some weeks are like this. Nothing happens. My mind is either too restless to settle or too restful to notice. My son Ben and his girlfriend, Kristen, are recovering from the COVID... — Updated 11/19/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: The creature from the white lagoon

My son and his fiancé are both sick with the dread coronavirus. I had not heard from him so I hounded him, knowing something was wrong. Ben managed to send me a two line email... — Updated 11/12/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Those were the days, my friend, we thought they'd never end

The Governor of Jalisco pushed the Emergency Button. Only food stores and pharmacies are open for business. The numbers for COVID infections and deaths have doubled what they were... — Updated 11/5/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor - Aging exponentially

A couple weeks ago I wrote Kathy, “I have aged 10 years since I had surgery in January.” Today Kathy wrote me, “I’ve aged 20 years since this coronavirus pandemic.” Since... — Updated 10/29/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking Out My BackDoor - A shift in perspective

This morning, Leo brought me a box of 24 jumbo Crayola Crayons and a pad with a dozen dry cakes of water colors. Along with the requisite brush. Just like we used back in first grad... — Updated 10/22/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Day by day by grateful day

On Canadian Thanksgiving Day, Kathy wrote with questions about our U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Basic “how does that work?” questions. I’d been in the kitchen... — Updated 10/15/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Oh, yes, I'm the great offender

“My need is such I offend too much. I’m lonely but no one can tell.” Ah, they were a great group, back in my time, The Platters. “Pretender” is the real word of the song,... — Updated 10/8/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor - Double bubble toil and trouble

In these perilous times, we must make our own fun. In the interests of pleasure and economy, aided by an unusual (to me) scientific bent, I set out to boil up some chemical... — Updated 10/1/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: The 'real' meaning of life and other silliness

When I sit at a blank page with no idea what I want to write, I go through who, what, when, where and how of the past several days to see what might pop up and out. My life is... — Updated 9/24/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: Why I'm not a real writer

Several years ago I attended a prestigious writers’ conference in Seattle. It was time. I was committed. I paid a bundle. The conference offered a chance to mingle with real... — Updated 9/17/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: Topsy and turvy

Last week, Crin wrote that she saw two full moons. I shrugged. That fits. The earth is flat, thank you, Pam. And the sun gallops around the earth at an unprecedented rate. The world... — Updated 9/10/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: Anything worth doing is worth doing badly

I don’t know why so many of my life’s lessons seem to require humiliation. Learning has always come easily to me, book learning, that is. And in the grand scheme of things, I... — Updated 9/3/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor - Monsters in the night

I crawled into bed early, barely darkish. Wasn’t feeling great. My stomach/intestines were slightly crampy, nothing dire, just not my usual cast-iron gut. Went to sleep with... — Updated 8/27/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: A rendezvous with death

I woke in the night reciting lines from WWI poet Alan Seeger’s, “I Have a Rendezvous with Death.” Where did that come from? “At some disputed barricade, When spring comes... — Updated 8/20/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: Greetings from Gringolandia

Michelle and Ana, up the road in Oconahua, tagged the name “Gringolandia” onto our enclave and it stuck. Though there has never been a dozen of us in residence at any one time,... — Updated 8/13/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: I know where the keys are kept

Kathy said that she told Crin they should ask Josue to put locks on their closets because I am out of control with my sewing machine. Once my creative juices begin flowing in a part... — Updated 8/6/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: The allegory of the green beans applied

Several years ago, while I still lived in Washington, I visited Dad in Harlem. It was during the last days when my step-mom was still able to do simple things for herself. She put... — Updated 7/30/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Goo-Goo-Googling along

I woke up with yellow eyeballs. The color was not quite glow-in-the-dark neon yellow, but definitely, the whites of my yes sported a sickly yellowish cast, gunked with matter. In... — Updated 7/23/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Along for the ride

Now and then, I am reminded how utterly unimportant I am. Sometimes a nudge from memory. Or a “knowing” I’d forgotten. Being alone as much as I am with only a couple... — Updated 7/16/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: This too shall pass and coffee

Last week I forbade, with wagging finger, I forbade Leo, our Rancho gardener who mothers all of us oldsters, to get sick. The next day Leo landed in the hospital. No, he does not... — Updated 7/9/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Got myself in trouble

The week has been filled with emails sailing back and forth between myself and my friends in the States and in Canada. We each are settling into a way of living that might be our... — Updated 7/2/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Life in the slow lane

Life is such a mixed bag of tricks, isn’t it? In the morning we slide out of bed, make coffee, check the obits to see if we made headlines, put our two hands (some of us are... — Updated 6/25/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Never a dullish moment

In quiet desperation, this morning I joined the ranks of those who cut their own hair. Using nail scissors. I do not recommend it. If anyone should ask, I’ll say my favorite... — Updated 6/18/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Wonders of my world

Outside my big front gate, the one used for truck delivery and such, a clump of lantana took root voluntarily. Lantana wears one of the world’s most beautiful flowers, like rings... — Updated 6/11/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: Looking for love in all the wrong places

He’s not feral. I assume the stranger is a him. He’s not a rack of bones. He yowled around beneath my bedroom windows three nights before I glimpsed him in his white coat with... — Updated 6/4/2020

 

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