Changing channels

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Yes, I know it’s been months since I posted. Seems that having a “real” life doesn’t leave much time for writing about said life. I’m sorry for the absence; I’m not sorry for having so much fun.

I knew there had to be a special reason for the Universe to drag me from the beach back to Idaho – in the winter, even. And I was right. There’s a wonderful man in my life who makes me happy, keeps me busy, and treats me better than I’ve ever been treated before.

Anyway, add a full-time job, an active social life, renovating an old house, and you have – you’ve got it. No time to write (well, except for work). Hence the dust on this blog.

After losing my original blog, I never have been able to find the same level of enthusiasm for this one. So rather than continue to do a poor job, I’ve decided to stop for a while and focus on other things – like getting my books into print, and creating a new website. Oh, and continuing to spend time with that wonderful man.

So, I’m going to officially back away from blogging for a while. I’ll eventually add a blog to the new website, which I’ll transition to this address as soon as I get brave enough to flip the “on” switch. But since I haven’t been posting for months, you won’t notice the absence anyway. And if you do, you can always find me on Facebook – although I admit I don’t post much there, either.

This isn’t really goodbye; I’m just taking a breather between sites. I’ll be back in less time than it would take me to post here again!

So thanks for following me here. Find me on Facebook, or at http://www.bethhanggeli.com shortly. Love ya! See you soon –

Posted in Everyday life | 4 Comments

Meeting of the Minds 2013

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Well, I’m back. Exhausted, happy, hoarse, footsore, but full of music and friendship and warmth. My time in Key West was magical, as it usually is. Spending five days on the island with my music friends is something I look forward to every year, although I’m never sure I’m going to be able to return the next year. But so far, I usually have been able to.

Anyway, it was an amazing five days. I ran from 8am until 1-2-3am most days. Duval Street is about a mile long – my hotel is on one end, and music venues are scattered along the entire street, but mostly on the OTHER end. So I walk miles in pursuit of music, friends, food, and fun (okay, and a rum punch or two). If I were smart, I’d rent a bike and save my feet; remind me of that next year, when I’m limping around town on bruised, swollen feet.

Meeting of the Minds, for those of you who don’t know, is the annual gathering of Jimmy Buffet fans, called Parrot Heads. It’s a bunch of days of live music, fundraisers, auctions, parties, awards, and general merrymaking. Now, I don’t consider myself a true Parrot Head  – most of them are considerably older and richer than me – but their presence attracts Trop Rock musicians, and that’s one of my worlds. So I join the masses for a few days, and soak up hours and hours of great music played by my friends.

MOTM is like Old Home Week. Friends from all over the country gather. I bump into them wandering Duval, in bars, listening to music. We form habits – meeting at certain places, sharing meals, catching up over cocktails. Days are filled with music and laughter, hugging friends we haven’t seen in a year, sharing a beer while listening to our favorite artists and songs. It feels like we’ve been together forever, and the good times will never end. Picture a party filled with hundreds of your best friends that lasts a week, and you have an idea of how I spent the last few days.

But all good things must end. On Sunday, we start saying goodbye. We promise to keep in touch, and see each other sooner than later. We know most of us will return next year, so at least we can look forward to that. But it’s sad to bid farewell to such wonderful friends.

So I’m exhausted, tired of walking and talking and laughing and not sleeping. But I’m deliriously happy. I wouldn’t trade a second of it. I return to a place that isn’t known for its live music – although I’m going to work hard at finding the music that IS there, as well as convincing my musician friends to trek north and play for us…once the snow melts.

In the meantime, I have great memories of a wonderful time. I’m dreading returning to the dark and cold, but hopefully the sunny days I just spent will carry me through. And if not, I guess I’ll be heading south again – definitely before another year passes, anyway!

Thank you, Key West. I’ll be back.

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Separate lives

IMG_0174I leave for Key West in the morning. EARLY in the morning. Returning to Florida, where half of my heart lies. The other half is here in North Idaho, where it’s been for many years. Do you think maybe I could have picked two places that were a LITTLE closer together? Having lives in places 3000 miles apart is rough. When I’m in one place, I miss the other – even though I enjoy where I am, when I’m there. But part of me always wants to be somewhere else.

I know, I know, you can never have everything. My father always said if there was a perfect place, it’d be full. And my financial advisor has reminded me that I don’t have to MOVE to a place I love – I can just visit it.

So this week, I’ll visit a place that I love, back in the midst of my crazy music world with my crazy music friends. And hope that the memories I make will carry me through the North Idaho winter, until I can get back again. Unless I win the lottery… (although I understand that requires buying a ticket). But I’ll also look forward to returning to Idaho, to my friends and my life up here.

I’m trying to learn to appreciate where I am when I’m there, instead of always looking ahead – or behind. I never have quite mastered the “now” concept, although I keep trying. I read something that DJ Jeff said, about how he learned to appreciate every day this past year, when he knew his days were numbered. Heck, ALL of our days are numbered – we just conveniently ignore that fact.

Anyway, for the next few days, I’ll try to live in the now. I’ll soak up every ounce of fun to be had, enjoy being with my Florida friends, and fill my memory banks with good times. Then I’ll return to Idaho, where the rest of my life waits. Which is filled with some pretty good stuff these days, as well. If it would just stay above freezing until, say, June…

I’ll try to post pictures on Facebook, although I’m not promising anything. I hope everyone has half as much fun as I’m going to have, and I’ll wish you all were with us, down on the island.

Be back soon!  Stay tuned!

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Don’t waste a second

My Trop Rock world lost another of our shining stars today. DJ Jeff lost his battle with cancer this afternoon. I saw him in May, when I was in Key West, and we recently exchanged Facebook comments about trading hugs next week. He was instrumental in bringing Trop Rock to the Internet through Beachfront Radio, so touched all of our lives through the music.

I ache for his lady – you could tell how much they loved each other by just being around them. I would be lucky to find someone to love me that much. Carol stood by his side through this whole ordeal, and I can’t fathom what she’s dealing with right now.

Jeff was always positive and cheery, squeezing every second out of the time he had left. Even though we knew the situation was dire, we still hoped that he would be the exception to the rule. I guess I convinced myself he would, so it was such a shock to read that he wasn’t able to.

We’ll all be in Key West next week, and I know his name will be everywhere. We’ll have time to comfort each other, and reminisce, and celebrate his life. And curse cancer for taking another of our family way too soon.

It’s yet another reminder that life is short, and I better stop wasting precious minutes of it. I’m vowing tonight to work harder at figuring out what *I* want out of life, instead of trying to please everyone else and be what they want me to be. Because every second I waste, Jeff would like back.

My heart hurts tonight.

Sail on, Jeff.

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North Idaho pictures

I’ve been urged to post pictures when I have nothing of value to say. So here are some, since I have none. 🙂

 

Marina at the Coeur d'Alene Resort

Marina at the Coeur d’Alene Resort

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The view from my cousin’s dock on Lake Pend Oreille

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Sunset over Lake Coeur d’Alene

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Phil and Dave on the dock, shooting the rainbow

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Pisces

IMG955195My friend Dave shared this with me recently, and although there are a few small things that aren’t quite accurate (my memory is selective, don’t really have any nervous habits, and don’t know that I’m moody), overall it’s a pretty good picture of me.

While I don’t read my horror-scope every day and believe that that’s exactly how my day is going to go, this description pegs me pretty well.

Maybe Dave knows me better than I thought he did! 🙂

Does your zodiac sign describe you as well as mine does me?

Posted in Deep thoughts, Everyday life | 2 Comments

October already?

Where did September go? Heck, where has 2013 gone? I still have to stop and think what year it is, and it’s almost over already. What’s going to happen in 2020 – will I even realize the year has changed before it’s gone? I guess the fact that time is flying is good. It means I’m busy.

Life in Idaho has been fun. I have lots of great friends here (that’s not to say I don’t have great friends in Florida), so am out a lot. I’m staying with wonderful friends who keep me sane, and warm, and not lonely. Work is – well, work is always work. It’s fun to see my name in the paper, and I work with nice people. (If you want to read any of my articles, go to http://www.cdapress.com and search for my last name; there’s one now, but will be more as time goes on.)

The weather is getting cold, and dark, and gray, and wet. Idaho’s weather is my albatross. If I wasn’t such an outside girl, I could tolerate it a lot better: I’d just stay inside until April! I have always been an outside girl, so not having windows to gaze out of, warm weather to revel in, beaches to walk – it all makes me a little stir crazy. (Okay, a lot stir crazy.) Not to mention having to wear SOCKS every day. That is the worst. I’m truly taking life day by day, focusing on the good, trying to ignore the bad, and pretending that winter is never going to come.

In three weeks, I’ll be in Key West for 5 days, back in my music world with my music friends. I’m counting the days. I might pitch a tent in Mallory Square and refuse to leave.

Anyway, I’m still out here. Trying to decide where my path lies. The Universe keeps shoving me in one direction, and then another. I’m looking for a crystal ball – or maybe a Ouija board – to help me make those big decisions. If anyone has an extra one, I’d love to borrow it. Maybe I need to visit that fortune teller on Duval Street…

Anyway, I’m fine, I miss my Florida life, I’m enjoying my Idaho life. Par for the course, in Bethland. I’ll try to check in more often. But in the meantime, here are a couple of pictures from Lake Pend Oreille. Enjoy!

My cousin and his neighbor Dave - and a rainbow - and the lake

My cousin taking pictures of the rainbow, and his neighbor Dave

The view from my cousin's lake cabin

The view from my cousin’s lake cabin

Posted in Everyday life | 6 Comments