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Articles written by Sondra Ashton

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 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Testing, testing, testing

Funny how some things never change. Remember back in school days when you had a big test coming up? Perhaps you went to bed worried and woke queasy, not wanting breakfast? I’m... — Updated 6/10/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: The things I do and don't

A couple thousand years ago, somebody famous, broadly paraphrased, said, we do things we know aren’t good for us (or for others) and don’t do the things we know to be good. Well... — Updated 6/3/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: Scorpion Alert!

When I moved to Mexico, one of the first things I learned was to check inside my shoes before inserting feet. Evidently that is a popular hiding place, nesting site, attack... — Updated 5/27/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Not original, not profound

I am a blade of grass. When I don’t have water I turn brown, crisp, wither into the ground. I lie dormant until such time as rains come. I am the same as a blade of grass ... — Updated 5/20/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: 'Riding Along in My Automobile'

We Americans are so tethered to our cars. It’s as though there is an umbilical cord between our brains and the ignition switch. When I first moved to Mexico, driving my vehicle... — Updated 5/13/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: In the grand scheme of things

We are one week plus days past our second vaccination shots and feeling great. Carol said, “I wonder if the syringe had anything in it. Ben sent me a cartoon, unsigned, so I’ve... — Updated 5/6/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my back door: Fantasies of Phenomena

I was going to write about the morning symphony, featuring “Variations on a Theme at Sunrise” with Bell-ringing Bird on timpani. This music assured me that the huge black cloud... — Updated 4/29/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Ring my bell!

I’d been out of bed five minutes when I heard the clang-rang of my gate bell. We respect each other’s boundaries. When neighbors visited, they stood out by the gate and yelled,... — Updated 4/22/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Down-in-the-dump-slump-lite!

Some days I can’t lose for winning. Sunrise, up earlier than I wanted. I moped around, felt mildly depressed. Not real depression. Real depression is serious stuff. Me, I’m in... — Updated 4/15/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: This week I started smoking again

I used to have a photo of my Dad in his crisp uniform, just back from Overseas. “Overseas” is a lost word, known to us older folks. Dad was in the Army Air Force in WWII. I was... — Updated 4/8/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: My world and mathematics

There is magic in my world. If I do not see it, it doesn’t matter. If I do see it, it doesn’t matter. Every day is a song. Yesterday’s music fell to earth, gone. Today’s... — Updated 4/1/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: The future is dark, which is the best …

True Montanans fully understand Virginia Woolf’s expression that “The future is dark, which is the best thing the future can be, I think.” We are trained from early times to... — Updated 3/25/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: The constancy of change

It’s a paradox. Constancy — firm, steadfast, permanent, consistent, un-changing. We can count on something with the property or nature of constancy. One thing we can count on... — Updated 3/18/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: An out-of-mind experience

Because of the pandemic, health cautions and precautions, these past several days, I’ve found myself to be the only gringo in town, or to be precise, on the ranch. Tom and Janet... — Updated 3/11/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: The day my mimeograph machine broke

Back in the olden days, in grade school, teachers used low-tech machines which made copies for all manner of school work, from pictures to color (don’t color out of the lines) to... — Updated 3/4/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Stick, stab and jab at the lab

Have you ever felt like you don’t really know what’s happening until it’s over? If I’m not around people to mirror back to me what I’m doing or saying, it is easy to fool... — Updated 2/25/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my backdoor: Dear Leanore,

I love it when Leo comes from the post office with a real letter in hand. Here it is mid-February and I just received your Christmas card. Denise’s arrived last week. I’ll not... — Updated 2/18/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: February is the longest month

Into every life some rain must fall. Okay. I understand. Go throw up and come back to let me explain. Our particular metaphoric “rainfall,” the whole world over, no humans... — Updated 2/11/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Letters, we get letters, we get stacks and stacks of letters

My last two were heavy-with-grief. I received unprecedented response. And lots of questions. I’ll talk about that in a minute. First, the good news. My son is back, truly the... — Updated 2/4/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: As the World Turns The Edge of Night

Nobody could have written a soap opera to equal the drama of these pandemic days. It’s not just me and my family. We are all part of the drama. Nobody would believe it. No soap... — Updated 1/28/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: It's a mess

When one thinks it can’t get worse, it can. And it does. This coming Feb. 20 would have been my son’s sixth sobriety birthday. I considered a thousand different ways of talking... — Updated 1/21/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: When summer sausage is a slice of bliss

Jim from Missouri, funny how we label people, isn’t it, was talking with me the other day, distanced and masked, when, in an idle comment, I mentioned that I miss summer sausage,... — Updated 1/14/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Beginnings, mysteries and a mixed bag of nonsense

Bob T, a long-time friend from my past, used to compare life to a battery. In order for it to work, life must have both positive and negative poles. I, of course, wanted only the... — Updated 1/7/2021

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Merry Christmas

The phone rings. I grab my mask with one hand and the phone with the other. “Merry Christmas.” My new habit. Masking has become automatic. Before I leave the house I grab a... — Updated 12/24/2020

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Oblivious me

I am a marked woman. Last week I announced to my little world that I am studying Spanish, obviously a language tagged as subversive. When next I arrive in Havre, I'm likely to be... — Updated 12/17/2020

 

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