Warm weather but the leaves are turning anyway. On Saturday I played substitute photographer for strangers – a 50th wedding anniversary. The non-professional photographer they had lined up cancelled the day before, and my mother happened to be in the right place at the right time. I was volunteered.
Despite my adamant warnings that I had no professional experience, lacked all the proper equipment, the woman in charge was happy to have me. Or perhaps relieved is a better word. To compensate for my lack of experience I took 1200 photos in 5 hours. Most of them blurry due to the low light conditions, the subject matter on the dance floor, and my lack of proper lighting equipment.
But then there’s always that sweet little cherub who stands perfectly still. Thank you sweet child, you saved the day.
Later there was apple picking – that time honored Vermont tradition.
Next up, planning for the all important Halloween decorations. I may need an intervention. This will be the first year I can remember that I’m living somewhere that gets trick-or-treaters.
Your word this week, word-nerds, is from “All the President’s Men”. I’m not reading it, no, but it was the closest book near me. The cover sports Dustin Hoffman and Robert Redford. In black and white.
Go forth and write my dear word-nerdlings. I’ll catch up with you soon.
My writer’s block/procrastination fueled by a truckload of Overwhelm hasn’t quite cleared yet. It feels like so much “fits and starts”. I trust that I’ll feel back to normal soon, and in the meantime I move myself gently through the day. You know, instead of the internal beatings we humans love to give ourselves for being…human.
Going “home” (coming home?) is said to be tricky emotionally, and after a few weeks here, I must agree. We spend our adult lives sorting out all the positives and negatives from our childhood, and these are irrevocably attached to the places we grew up. Coming back to this place I spent the last years of childhood – there is a hefty gravitational pull to it. The pull to regress, the pull to relax and stop moving, the pull to settle (in all the variations of definitions), the pull to change it.
It’s neither wholly good or wholly bad, it’s just a pull, like tentacles wrapped around the calves at sea, with no shore in sight. Fighting could lead to exhaustion, relaxing could lead to going under. It’s a test, so I pace myself.
I bike along trails, help my mother with the business (at a harvest festival over the weekend), take in the sights, and cook with fresh ingredients from the garden and greenhouses.
Your word this week, dearest word-nerds, is:
Two days spent carving out a work/living space for myself in my new/temporary home, and today discovered that the café in town feels like a slice of the home town I left – local, organic, eclectic, and I was pleasantly surprised to learn they offer wireless. Only two tables in the joint, but in my head I choose the window corner to work a few days a week on copywriting, chatting over the counter with the owners during refills.
Really, I’m thrilled more than I should be about this café. A head cold at the end of last week has set me behind in work. I don’t like being behind. It makes me panicky and anxious. I’m countering these feelings by, what else, being productive now that I feel better. Having found a place where I can work, besides the sunny little spot I created for myself, means more productivity. It’s easier to work long hours when you can switch up the monotony. Plus I’m one of those people who works better with background noise I don’t need to pay attention to.
(I stole this photo off their Facebook page. A winter shot, but I liked this one best of the outside.)
I still ache for the place and people I left behind, and especially my cat, mostly because I hear reports she’s taken to living in the basement and isn’t her usual, perky self. I’d like to bring her here, but there are already cats and I can’t decide which situation is more traumatic for her. Also, I don’t want her to get used to being an indoor/outdoor cat as I plan to land in the city soon and can’t stomach the thought of her longing to be outdoors again.
So I carry on, putting the pieces together of a new life – new people and new places and new spaces to love, like this one.
Your word this week is:
The hydrangeas are full on the bushes, weighing down the branches, just turning now from white to a rusty pink. As I stand on a step ladder clipping a bushel of them, they release the previous night’s rain onto my face and shoulders.
I am clipping these hydrangeas for a wedding. My mother, the florist, gave me the task, but I failed to count the bucket of already clipped hydrangeas before starting so we end up with an extra armful that now sit bunched in vases on the dining room table. As mistakes go, this one is delightful.
Setting up a wedding involves last minute rushing to ensure the freshness of flowers, followed by a lot of waiting at the venue between the set up and the handing off of the bouquets and pinning of the boutonnieres.
Tomorrow my mother has to prep flowers for a funeral. I think of the strange intersections in the deeply personal that being a florist means.
My mother’s shop has no website, and being well practiced in wordpress I plan to set up a new website for her. Just as soon as I finish the long list of other things I’m supposed to do. Not least of which is landing a new full time position.
At night I’m reading a John Grisham novel that was left behind by my lawyer sister. I have several books I brought with me to read, but was too tired the first night to dig them out and ended up picking this one up. Your word from the book is:
Keep on word-nerds.
The man at the car rental place looked over my head nearly the entire time we stood there discussing which vehicle would be best to transport me and a tiny, yet not actually small, amount of my belongings. He was wholly unconcerned with my dilemma – the mini van or the Suburban? The cargo van I had reserved was not yet returned, and I didn’t have time to wait another hour or more, so I was left to assess the cargo areas of the mini-van or the giant SUV.
His name tag said, “Michael”. Michael clearly hates his job, I think. He moves in that slow, heavy-limbed way of the soul weary. He didn’t care whether or not I was going to be able to fit my bicycle, several bins, and various other odd sized boxes and baskets and bags. I wanted him to care. I wanted him to notice the neon sign on my forehead flashing, “I’M IN A MAJOR TRANSITION”.
According to the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale, I have concurrent stressful events that add up to 165. Code level yellow. And this guy, this guy, won’t throw me a bone. He lives and breathes cars for a living. He knows things I don’t, and I need him to tell me which damn vehicle is going to fit little me and my little mountain of stuff.
I ask him for a tape measure and decide on the Suburban. It’s longer. I get it home, and despite my fretting, everything fits with a little room to spare.
I close the gargantuan back of the Suburban, hear the click of the latch and it’s the sound of closing a 7 year chapter of my life. Just like that. Before I start to cry, I point the nose North, and then it was like this:
(Pardon the spots on the windshield – the dude didn’t even wash it for me.)
Your word this week, my dearest word-nerds, is inspired from real life events: