The Suitcase Lady

Stress

October 18, 2016, 10:34 pm

The upcoming Presidential election seems to be a choice between Democracy and decency or demagoguery, racism and misogyny. This surreal situation has landed many of us in a state of constant stress.

Stress is harmful to health. Lately, I have been hearing much advice from the media and friends on how to stay sane in the midst of this electoral madness.

One suggested option is wine…..lots of wine. My guess is that liquor stores are seeing an uptick in sales. However, drinking oneself into oblivion, while tempting, is probably not the wisest solution.

Meditation and slow breathing are also proffered as anxiety reducing techniques. Unfortunately, some of us don’t get any results from mindful breathing except slower breaths……the mind still races full speed ahead.

My only escape from the current political scene is reading. I have been checking out piles of books from my library and making sure the books are by my favorite authors.  Recently, I was overjoyed to get Alexander McCall Smith’s latest book in his No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency Series entitled Precious and Grace. For three blissful, stress escaping hours, I read the book straight through.

Alexander McCall Smith is a medical ethicist by profession, and his books are not detective novels. They are, however, about the mystery of love and human nature.

Here is an excerpt from Precious and Grace:

Mma Ramotswe smiled. It was some time since she had heard the word skellum, as it seemed to have passed out of favour. Yet it was such a fine word, that so effectively described a rogue or a rascal; a word that her father had used eloquently, picked up from the Boers, when describing dealers who paid poor farmers too little for their cattle, or traders who doctored their scales so that they could give short shrift to buyers of sorghum or maize meal. Obed Ramotswe had seen these as skellums and would call them that to their face; now, perhaps, the skellums could get away with it because people were afraid to stand up to them, or were no longer sure what was right or wrong, or were afraid to identify wickedness or sleaze when they saw it.

No Stress

photo: menucha.org

 

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