That’s me, and David this AM. We’re having a heat wave and neither of us slept well last night. The temperature in the living room (coolest in the house) reached 70 at 6 AM, the coldest part of the night. I turned on the air conditioning and the blower, and will walk on the treadmill today as it was 80 degrees outside at 9AM.
Now you probably think we are heat wimps, and you are probably correct. But, remember David and I are both descended from Northern Europeans, you know the kind who have sleds for their dogs. Our dogs, descended from sled dogs, lie prostrate on the floor if the temps hit 80 and we are not far behind. Lord deliver us when August arrives.
The bad thing about the heat is that once more the peonies will burn up before they have a chance to fully open. My tulips fare slightly better, but the late tulips were not designed to withstand scorcing sun. Goodness knows what will become of the Hellebore plants in full splendor at the moment. The good news is that a Hellebore I thought dead has thrown up one long unopened leaf. It sits in the darkest part of the yard, next to the shed on the side of the house.
I’d go outside and take photos of these plants, however, I am suffering from seasonal allegies and spent most of yesterday complaining about the weather and the fifty million flowers blooming at present. As I mentioned above, today will be a day for walking the dog inside, on the treadmill. NO, I haven’t done it before, but if the Dog Whisperer can do it with his pet pit bull, so can I.
Given wonderful coverage, including a glowing report by the Canadian Prime Minister, the PBS News Hour gave Margaret Thatcher last evening, it seems fitting to make a comment or two about her. I know many never liked her, but I did. I knew she knew just how tough it was for a female working in an all male environment as I did for much of my corporate career. I also knew as the daughter of a grocer, she was not a member of the priviledged class (More like Zoie in the BBC series, May to December).
Margaret Thatcher proved that women can be leaders as well as men. Margaret set the stage for women like Hillary Clinton and Angela Merkel, two other women I admire.
One day, my boss teased me about being an Iron Maiden because with my steely composure I had stood up to an overbearing union steward. Although I was scared to death on the inside, the steward told my boss I was the toughest woman he ever dealt with. Of course he didn’t tell my boss he showed up for our parley wearing jeans torn in the crotch and sat with his legs spread apart and underwear, filled with junk, exposed for the whole meeting.
Our meeting was about several complaints registered by our office steward concerning the use of the photocopy machine by the secretary. A frivolous complaint if I ever heard it, registered by a novice union member.
The office steward worked for me so my boss assigned me the task of dealing with his complaints which meant dealing with the clerk’s higher-ups.
As it turned out, there were 14 different complaints, and all but one, where I followed the company lawyer’s instructions to the letter, were eventually dismissed. This experience and others with union officials led me to have a negative attitude about the overreaching ways of the union.
Don’t get me wrong. I am a sociology major or was and had many long hours of classes and read with great sympathy many books on labor in the US and Britain and unions. I also got “Good Marx.” Plus, both of my grandfathers were union men, and I know unions did a lot of good for a long time. But in my opinion, some of unions got too big for their britches in the latter part of the twentieth century. And they were infiltrated by Communists.
Margaret Thatcher took on the unions in Britain, brought Socialism to a screeching halt, and made the UK a better place for it. I’m not saying she did everything perfectly, but she showed courage where others (mostly male colleagues) failed. “Make a U-turn if you must, but this lady’s not for turning,” she famously said to her colleagues when things got tough and most of them wanted to give way.
Ronald Reagan’s Cabinet and Margaret Thatcher’s Ministry meet in the White House Cabinet Room. A large jar of jelly beans sits prominently on the cabinet room table during Reagan’s presidency. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I wrote a graduate history research paper on Margaret Thatcher, and in reading the requisite historical material, including her autobiography, I learned much about her. She was a wonderful leader, and many things that work well today can be attributed to her tenacity. My 2 cents.