A Bit of a Ramble on a Friday Afternoon

It is twenty minutes until five on a Friday afternoon. I am going to do my best to get words on the page now so that I can have the luxury of a whole evening to do whatever I damn well please, which probably includes climbing in bed fairly early and watching tv with Ray. (We are currently watching the British detective series Luther on Netflix, plus HBO’s Perry Mason, which is awesome.) Normally, we rendezvous around 10 pm for an hour or so of television before going to sleep. During those evening hours, I am either working with students or (if I’m lucky) working on my own pieces of writing. So, writing in the late afternoon feels like a real treat. I might even go outside afterwards and water our little postage stamp-sized garden.

What to say? My mind is in a bit of a flutter at the moment. I’ve spent this afternoon attending to bills, paperwork and Story Circle Network Online Classes business. I didn’t finish, but I arrived at a satisfying stopping point. So, that feels good. Plus, I had the most satisfying lunch (all homemade, of course) of chicken and rice soup (thank you, my dear Instant Pot), roasted yams and a romaine salad filled with goodies and topped with feta cheese. Plus, a few days back Rachael made a lemon cake using two cups of grated yellow squash from our garden and it was still moist and wonderful, especially with cream cheese frosting.

Life has become quite simple around here. We get up, eat, work, eat, work, eat, and then watch tv. When in Ojai at the orange grove, the only difference in that routine is that we watch DVDs instead of live tv or else read and do crossword puzzles. Plus, we try to get up as early as possible while there so we can get as much done before the heat becomes oppressive. I am not complaining about this simple life. I rather like it. We are very lucky in that we have a lot to occupy our time since we have project after project that need our attention. That is life living with Ray, who has enough ideas to fill five people’s lives from dawn until dusk. (Plus, I have a few ideas of my own, of course.)

I think this time when there are few diversions has helped me to appreciate very simple things. For example, that Romaine salad at lunch was simply delicious and the conversation I had with a young woman from Verizon about our new jet pack hot-spot for the orange grove made me quite happy. She was kind, considerate and helpful. In exchange, I was appreciative and assured her that I had all the time in the world so she shouldn’t feel rushed. We set up an in-store appointment for tomorrow when I’ll go masked and ready with Purell and before I know it, Ray and I will have our own hot-spot instead of always having to asking Liz and Ron if we could please borrow theirs.

It is now five o’clock and I’ll close. As my children are fond of saying lately to me, “Wow, Mom, that information was soooo interesting.” (Sarcasm being alive and well in the Beaty family.) What can I say? I haven’t been to a movie, a store or out to eat in four months. I am finding joy in life in the slow lane, where I seem to be spending a lot of time performing mundane tasks that feel remarkably satisfying to complete. Did I mention that I just learned how to fill gaps with canned spray foam with that skinny little nozzle attachment? I have been filling up gaps to keep the little critters out of our various buildings at the orange grove and feel very proud that I’ve managed to form clear lines of foam. Not to mention, that I have spray painted practically every piece of outdoor furniture in sight.

Talk tomorrow. Rest assured you’re not the only person in the world with little to nothing to say. I’m here to demonstrate that truth.

Hugs to all and wear your masks!

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