Painting with Words – Mesa Verde

Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado
I am a dreamer to my core; it is just who I am.
That is simultaneously a curse and a blessing.
I recognize how things are but imagine them to be better.
There is no place better to do that than Mesa Verde

My first visit there seemed almost spiritual.
I could almost see my ancestors living their daily lives.
How they got there no one really knows.
Why they left is pretty much the same.

The stone and adobe walls they built are still there.
I touched them and dreamed I was among them.
In their isolation they lived in peaceful harmony with nature.
But that is kinda the Native American way, isn't it?

I would go back several more times and it always felt the same.
I absorbed their world into mine if only for a few minutes.

God willing, I will go back again before I leave this earth.
My idealism and dreams needs a refill from time to time.

For me there is no place in the world quite like it.

A place where I can escape the dreadfulness of our times.
Where I can immerse myself in an imagined Utopian world.
We all need a place like that and Mesa Verde is that place for me.

Being The CHEF Of Your Existence

It’s been an interesting journey trying to stay up on the happening of the Millennial and Centennial Generations. They seem to be learning lessons we Baby Boomer couldn’t make happen. One of those lessons is keeping your hormones corralled. I don’t think that suddenly the teenage years and slightly beyond have changed that much when it comes to hormones. So something else is taking place.

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Seeking a Joyous Journey Rule No 11 – Don’t Get Hung Up On Stuff…

Capitalism in America demands that we buy more and more stuff each year. Without that insatiable drive we simply couldn’t grow as a society today. I think that needs to be basically changed to match the successes of the rest of the world. Instead of requiring us to buy more this year that last, maybe we should spend it on our infrastructure or, here’s a wild thought, maybe making healthcare a right instead of a privilege! Ok, enought soapboxing for now, let’s get back to the point of this post.

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A Joyous Journey Is About Coping

Having a joyous journey doesn’t mean your life is obstacle free.

In fact, it is more likely the opposite. I know I, and I suspect many other seniors, get depressed when we visit a typical retirement blog on the internet. Almost all of them are about the great time the blogger has experienced. They travel to many foreign places and tell you how mystical they are. They tell you about how strong and supportive their families are. They often bring up their spouses as those who support and agree with them 100%. Life is just great! Life is joyous!

How come it is not so great for some of us!

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Joyous Journey Rule #8 – Take the Dark Side In Small Doses

The dark side of life is kind of like a black hole, or maybe a Venus fly trap, it can suck you into its depths. and won’t let you go. If that happens there is no way for you to even fully dream of a joyous life.

I must admit that much of the news from the world today is “dark side material”. Especially when it comes to politics. There just seems to be nothing good happening there recently.

We shouldn’t drop out entirely from our political processes, but instead we need to take them in small doses. Kinda like a drone level view. But one thing we do HAVE to do is to turn out on Election Day 2020 to have our collective say on who we want to lead our country, and maybe secondarily how long we want it to survive.

Rule #8 – Take The Dark Side in Small Doses.

Seeking a Joyous Journey – Find Something

I’m going to let you in on my secret of life.  It has taken me seven decades of continuous searching to discover this secret.

Find something you might enjoy and then do it.

But maybe the real secret is to find the things you don’t enjoy and get rid of them as soon as possible. Personally looking at the back end of the process, I have found that the most freeing time in life starts with your retirement from the working world. This is a time you are no longer shackled to that 9 – 5 job. You can do whatever you want. Don’t spend too much of it in procrastinating indecision. If you don’t know what you want just pick something and if that doesn’t work out then throw it away and try something else.


I have been retired from the corporate world almost twenty years now and I have tried scores of things that I thought might give me joy. I have settled on a half dozen or so that indeed make me jump out of bed in the morning, at least when my back and knees let me, to tackle each day! One of those things is, of course, RJsCorner. I can’t wait to browse the Internet each morning for things that catch my attention and might also be of interest to you. I can’t wait tohave my say about them. I can’t wait to give you some of the lessons I have learned in life.

But, RJsCorner it not my entire life. If I were to suddenly lose interest, which I can’t imagine doing right now, I could fill up the time I spend here with other things that also give me joy. Never get stuck in thinking that you have no options.

Seeking a Joyous Journey – It’s Never Too Late

I want to let you in on one of my dark secrets I have learned in life and that is, I waited way too long before I sought, or even realized, what a joyous journey could be like. Some people, and I am totally envious of them, figure it out much earlier than I did.

I went through much of my life afraid of change. Out of college, I thought I had a good job that provided me with the security I thought I needed. But in reality that was a cop out. While I didn’t hate my job I really didn’t get much pleasure or even satisfaction from it. It would be over twenty years into my thirty year corporate journey until I finally did things I really enjoyed doing. Even the change that caused this joyfulness to happen was really forced on me due to circumstances of my going deaf.

Due to my Aspie traits, I just didn’t have the understanding, or maybe it was just courage to manage much of a social life. A few dates came and went, but for the most part my single life was just that, single. I was just too awkward in one-on-one communications to hold onto many lasting friends.

It was not until I retired from the corporate world at the age of fifty-four that the idea of joy captured me, or maybe it was more like, “now what do I do?”panic. I, like so many others based my life on my work-world and when that was gone, I was numb to the possibilities without that label.

Eventually, it dawned on me that I could do just about anything I wanted. My cautious but boring life before allowed me to save enough and that along with my pension and social security freed me from having to choose something just to make money.

To close this post off, it is never too late to go on new adventures that make your life joyful. Yeah, I had a lot of missed opportunities in earlier stages of my life, but I believe I am finally finding the joy that I should have sought much earlier. And now that I have it, I intend to hold on to it!

It’s Never Too Late To Seek A Joyous Journey.

Seeking a Joyous Journey – The Secret To It All

I know most writers save their ultimate secrets until the end of the story. But, if you haven’t figured it out by now, I am different. I am going to give you the ultimate secret to life right now. 😉

Always Open Your Mind To Different Possibilities.

To me, being closed minded is the ultimate in stupidity. Yes, I realize that many of us are just too fearful to think there might be another way to live our lives. For some, it just takes a giant leap to actually make changes. I could say those people are in a rut, but I really think it comes down to courage to face today and tomorrow with hope instead of despair. That is a very hard thing for some to do.

I don’t care what you might say, none of us has a lock on life! We are all just playing it by ear as each year passed. Mostly we make mistakes, but sometimes we also do something right. We should pay attention to those “right” times to try to learn lessons from them for the challenging event.

Unfortunately, most of us instead concentrate on the stuff we screwed up and that teaches us not to take risks. Risks can result in failure and that is something we want to avoid to a paranoid degree. We learn from our mistakes so as to maybe do it right the next time. We don’t stagnate on an event in our past and live it for the rest of our lives. There are other possibilities that will result in a more joyous life.

When I see men of my generation still living the Vietnam war of more than 50 years ago, I shutter at a wasted life that is stuck in the past. But, it seems we make more guys, and now gals, like this with each of the wars we inevitably get ourselves into. When will we ever learn? Wasted lives due to unnecessary traumatic experiences is a true tragedy of my generation.

When I see so many senior citizens and even those younger think that it is better to try to bring back the past rather than to do something to make America better for tomorrow, I see helplessness. By their inordinate fear of the future they have put a heavy burden on their children and grandchildren to fix what our generation won’t.

The secret I gave you above is similar to one of my ten pillars of life.

Embrace Change

That is the way we move forward as people, communities, and nations. Whether you believe it or not, we are all in this together and we need to look out for each other, instead of considering almost everyone different from our, an enemy.

Seeking a Joyous Journey -Rules

I am one of the many people who regularly watch NCIS on TV. There are so many NCIS’s now that I guess I need to expand that sentence. I’m talking about the one with Leroy Jethro Gibbs. One of the things I like about him is his rules. I don’t know how many rules he has, but his team seems to know them all.

When I was trying to find a format for this new project of RJsCorner I thought of Jethro and his rules, so I thought I would start my set of rules on having a joyous life in my senior years. 😉

If you have any suggestions on what to add, I am open to them.


In investigating sources for posts, I have come across more than I ever imagined. I think this topic could go on forever (ha). One of the top sources is a guy named Ernie Zelinski. He has written several books on the topic of finding joy in your life. He definitely knows how to enjoy life.

One is entitled

The Joy of Not Working: A Book for the Retired, Unemployed, and Overworked — 21st Century.

Another is

How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free: Retirement Wisdom That You Won’t Get from Your Financial Advisor.

As we go thorough this new series I’m sure you will come to appreciate Ernie as much as I do.


Let’s finish up this boring preparatory work by telling you I am giving each post in this topic a unique number. Since I hope to build up the joyful story one brick at a time, numbering the post will make them easier to refer to them in the future.

Next time I am going to give you the main secret to what I think allows us to accomplish a joyous journey in our lives. I know giving my secret out at the front end of the story is pretty unusual, but since I plan on referring to it many times to reinforce what I will be talking about, it just makes sense.

Seeking a Joyous Journey – Joyful??

Seeking a Joyous Journey Through Our Retirement Years

With this post, I am introducing yet another new special project here on RJsCorner. It is entitled

Seeking a “Joyous Journey” Through Our Retirement Years.

This project will hopefully become a major part of this blog in the coming months. I have also redesigned the header above to reflect a new direction for RJsCorner.

Joyful is often a very misunderstood word, especially in today’s hectic world. Some think that being joyful and being happy are the same thing, but I am finding that couldn’t be further from the truth.

What is joy?  Joy is a state of being, whereas happiness tends to be an externally triggered event. Happiness is based on other people, places, thoughts and events. It’s nice to have moments of happiness, but it is much more fulfilling to be in a self-induced constant state of joy. You see the difference don’t you?

A primary source of a joyful life comes from our attitudes. It is not always about accepting the way things are, but sometimes it is, especially those things we have no control over.   Joyfulness is a state of mind. It is hard to completely wrap your mind around the concept of joy in just a few words or even books. Many people, me included, have sought joy throughout their life and never manage to really find it.

I want to make it clear here that I am not turning RJsCorner into some “feel good” site. My posts on this topic won’t be about citing a bunch of platitudes and buzz words. Instead, it will be about learning to take control of the dark side of life and eventually letting the sunshine fill its place. It will mean we caste off the negative things that presently consume way too much of our time. The degree in which we manage to do that will determine how successful we are at finally achieving a Joyous Life.

Making a joyous life will mean thinking for ourselves and questioning how we got to where we are. Changing your attitude toward life is not fluffy, and that is exactly what I hope to accomplish, at least personally.

It is a challenge, especially for me, to move my mindset from my current state of negative thinking to a more joyous path but I am determined to do just that. Just how it will happen I don’t fully know yet. But the most obvious obstacle is to avoid the stench of politics and other distasteful things that are taking up too much real estate in my personal journey.

I will continue with some of the regular stuff here, that many of you seem to enjoy. That includes of course, “Having My Say” about things, giving you some techie lessons, and of course snippets here and there, and some of my bouts of creativity.

I would really like to hear your thoughts on this new agenda here at RJsCorner.