Usually I go outside to get the local paper and USA Today at 4:11 a.m., since I am often awake with a stuffy nose at that time. I can set my clock by my early morning paper carrier's delivery, and he blessedly chucks it up the driveway near the garage. This morning I miraculously had been able to sleep through the night, so I went out at 7:15 to collect the two papers. (The Salt Lake papers don't land on my driveway, usually just dumped out the car window on the end of the driveway, until 9:30 or 10:00 a.m., whenever the spirit moves him.)
The birds have arrived in countless numbers, singing a chorus as varied and as beautiful as any choir. The divas hold forth with incredible arias and show-off trills, while the mere chorus birds dutifully add their "tweet tweets" and little garden variety chirps. But what a wonderful way to greet the morning. A little hoppy toad was sitting near my garage door, prompting me to go check later when we open the door to make sure he doesn't get crushed. Now some bird is making an incredibly loud sound, kind of like a barge horn, but I can't tell where or what it is. The sun comes to west St. George in patches, since it must rise first over the main part of St. George and then creep upward and over the bluffs that separate the two parts of town. The first sun lights on Utah Hill, not quite worthy of being called a mountain but bigger than a hill, several miles to the west of us, and on the mesas in between. Utah Hill presents a luminous view to start the day, standing out in stark and beautiful contrast to the darker areas in between.
This could be a good day, except for the fact I have to go see my cardiologist at 11:00 a.m. I am always afraid of cardiologists because they always want to do things--run stress tests, run blood tests, wire you up with electrodes to see if your heart is still beating, listen to your heart with pregnant ums and ahs while you wonder what disaster they are uncovering. My cardiologist is mean, and I have told her several times that I hated her. On the other hand, she has likely saved or at least prolonged my life with her merciless regimens and smorgasbords of pills to regulate A-fib, thyroid, blood pressure, and who knows what else. So I guess I would have to say that despite hating her, I still love her. The last time I saw her, she spent most of the visit talking about my wife's health problems with me, and then went with me to the waiting room, an unusual thing to do, to visit with my wife for a few minutes. She told me that the reason she is still practicing is because she is so moved by the efforts many of her patients and patient couples make to sacrifice and care for one another so compassionately. So unless I have to go immediately to the hospital and get a couple of stents put in, I'll be back at the blog this afternoon some time.