The email was quite innocent, really, on a totally different subject. But then the writer jolted me back to reality with a couple questions about something I had pretty much ignored:
"By the way, did you recover from your injury? How is your diet coming?"
My first thought was, "How does she know about that?" Then I remembered that when you write a column, your life can become an open book. Ah, yes, I thought. I wrote about those things a year ago, in my piece on New Year's resolutions for 2012.
So I guess it was confession time. Just how did I do with those published promises I made to myself a couple months after moving to Menifee?
Before I could look up my Dec. 28, 2011 column on that subject, I felt the ache in my big toe that never really left after my foot surgery a year and a half ago. OK, so I haven't recovered from injury quite like I wanted. Surgery fixed part of the problem, but some days I still limp around like Walter Brennan in a John Wayne movie.
That recovery wasn't really a New Year's resolution. However, I did have some degree of control over my healing, with the diet I had planned. Working out regularly and losing weight? Those were definite goals.
As I realized this, I glanced down at my belly. Hmmm. Failure on that one. The goal was to lose the 15 pounds I had gained since foot surgery. Instead, I gained another 20.
Thus Resolution No. 1 is a holdover from last year -- work out regularly and lose some weight. But let's see how I did on my other resolutions:
Read at least two books a month: Failure. Maybe if I could string together all the college papers I grade and count them as books. Otherwise, nope.
Learn Menifee history: Success. I'm no expert, but I have the motivation to learn and the willingness to get my feet dirty on the old tractor paths. I apologize for anywhere I trespassed to get a photo of some relic up close. Not you, Mrs. Jones.
Grade papers on time: Failure. Well, let me clarify that. They were graded in time to meet the final deadline at the end of the quarter, but not in what I consider a timely manner. Better keep that one on the list for this year.
Take horseback riding lessons: Failure, but I refuse to give up on that one. Keep it on the list, but wait until I lose those 35 pounds. I am against animal cruelty.
Go camping: Failure. Think I'll leave that one off the list until more of my grandkids are old enough to sit with me by the campfire.
Stay focused: Nope. I still walk into a room and forget why I went there. I'd like to keep it on the list, but I need suggestions.
Explore the area on foot: Success, to a point. I've checked out a lot of the territory, but without one foot cooperating, I'm switching to a bike to keep this one on the list.
Work on my family history: Failure. And I'd been doing so good at that. It always stays on the list, however, and this time I'm determined. Gotten a few leads lately.
Be kind to others: You tell me, but I think I'm passing.
Drive from Newport and Antelope to the Countryside Marketplace in less than five minutes: I swear I've done it once or twice, but I'm not really obsessed with that one. As my wife likes to say, "It is what it is."
So Happy New Year once again, and I'll update you on my progress. Maybe most of you don't care, but there's one lady in Sun City who seems interested. I always wanted a fan club.