Leaving our neighborhood on my way to the gym, I waited for a traffic light to change to green, and when it did I started going. A small pickup truck came roaring from the right. I thought, he’s going awfully fast to stop in time. So I watched him, and sure enough, he didn’t stop. He ran the red light, turned directly into my lane in front of me, and took the right-of-way. I slowed down to avoid a collision and he took off like nothing had happened. His truck was brand new with paper plates, so I was surprised he’d be so careless, if for nothing else but his shiny red truck. Nutty drivers. You have to drive defensively all the time. Or they’ll hit you. And when the defensive driving isn’t enough, then Someone sometimes steps in and helps. That’s what happened to me later.
This week is crazy and I just want to curl up and watch a movie and pretend I have nothing to do. Why is it that Decembers are always so busy? Besides my normal stuff, like teaching music lessons and writing this daily blog that I’m just about ready to bury in the backyard so I don’t have to see it or think about it, I’m booked. I thought getting Chloe’s Odyssey out would ease up my schedule for me. All it did was create a vacuum that sucked in a bunch of other commitments. In the next seven days, I have three rehearsals, three musical gigs, tickets to see a Christmas Carol, and a freelance writing deadline. I’m out every single night this week after today. And I hear a snowstorm is coming tomorrow. The only thing worse than driving in the dark for me is driving in the dark and in the snow.
As many of you know, yesterday I had to take a stop-out of my life, my plan, my book launch prep, to go serve on jury duty. Just like everyone else in the world—well, everyone except that young, enthusiastic personal trainer who was excited to be in the juror box yesterday—when the summons appeared in my mailbox, I was not happy. I dropped back my head, aimed my nose to the sky and cried, “Un. Believable!” It’s our civic duty, yes, to serve our democracy in such a manner, but really? Right when I’m days away from launch? I bet astronauts wouldn’t have to go sit on a jury minutes before heading for Mars. That stupid pink envelope adds a blow of stress and upheaval all of us (except that young, enthusiastic personal trainer) could live without.
It was always a little hard to decide who would be what for Halloween. I wanted each child to be happy with their character and to not feel slighted in any way. We weren’t a family that put emphasis on one type of person being more important and inherently better than another.
The week before last we were doing some fence repair in our yard. Beforehand, we had to call the utilities to have them come out and put their little party flags and colorful paint spots all over our yard to indicate where not to dig. We always call the flag and paint guys before digging, because we know what can happen.
Yesterday was a sad day. Sometimes I just have those. I know a lot of people do. When I get one, I can’t always pinpoint the trigger, but if I can that’s helpful because I can put it in context and process it. If I can’t figure it out though, like if I can just feel sadness in my blood as a chemical that for some unknown reason decides to course through my system on a given day, I just have to weather it. I used to focus on it more and it got a better hold of me. Now I try things to cope with the sadness.
After attending a funeral last week for a friend my age, my mind turned to thoughts and processing of death and what that means. Death is a prevalent part of life. But as many have observed before, our society does little to prepare us to deal with it ahead of time. Many current resources can help us when life catapults us into the sudden face of dying and death, but most of us just don’t go there until we have to—at least we adults who are mostly in control of our behavior and faculties.
Before our honeymoon to England, I bought a green London Fog coat for the trip. It was a medium weight, lined squall jacket, perfect for so many different weather days. It was good quality and lasted, both in condition and style (plus I generally don’t run after fashion trends so I knew I could wear this thing well into the 21st century) (in spite of what my kids might say about it once they grew up and found me wearing the same coat).
When a writer begins his or her book, there is always a little bit (and sometimes a lot a bit) of delusions of grandeur. You have visions of amazing things that will take place in the future: your guest appearance on the Tonight Show, accepting that Oscar for best something or other (maybe they’ll make a new category just for your own type of book), or having Oprah read it and love it and tweet it out to all her fans.
Twenty-three years ago this month, we had our babies baptized. I grew up Baptist and we were taught that baptism didn’t count unless you were old enough to decide for yourself and then got immersed completely, like water-up-your-nose dunked.
Want my stories delivered right to your inbox? I can do that! Click the button below to sign up and I'll make sure to send my post right to you each day that I blog.