Sunday, July 24, 2011

solitary refinement

I’ve had the entire week to myself, to reflect, stir the muse, and BBQ hot Italian sausages.

You see, my wife and daughter went of with my sister-in-law and her kids to a cottage for a week’s vacation.

It’s been a while since it was just me and the four walls.

The walls haven’t changed much.

Being the planner that I am, I’ve had a long while to sit back and decide what I want to get done before old age claims me.

And by old age, I mean sitting infirm in a chair mostly blind and deaf wearing Depends and drooling on myself. Not a pretty picture, but pretty close to the inevitable reality unless I just up and expire from heart failure or cancer. Both of which I’m trying to avoid by exercising and eating good things as much as possible.

So, what has this week of solitary confinement done for me?

Well, for one I finished watching Heroes. I saw many flaws in the show’s logic, but overall I was okay with it. It didn’t speak to me on too many levels and the fourth season, which I was really hoping was going to rock my socks, only managed to create a slight static cling effect. In other words - Meh.

I think it was because Hiro had a relatively small part in the fourth season and he was my favourite character as I’m sure he was with many other fans. But getting time travel stories to work out awesomely is a tough task at best.

I also managed to go to an auction and gather more goods for my wife. She teaches and needs baubles to hand out to kids for appropriate classroom behaviour. I managed to scoop a huge box of colourful butterfly erasers. Huge being around five hundred or so - no I am not going to count them.

Also had my good friends over during the hottest day of the week to play Arkham Horror. And we were up against Cthulhu himself - but we smoked him by closing all the gates before he could come pay us an unpleasant visit.

I’ve played tennis five times during this week as well. And it’s really taking a toll on my aging body. I have back aches, ankle aches and a pain in my neck muscles and my wrist is hurting me again just when I thought it might be getting better. This getting close to 50 thing is really starting to bother me. Still, others at the tennis club are 70 plus and they are still playing so I should not grumble about my ailments too much.

Our steps were professionally replaced this week too, so nobody needs to break a bone falling down them now. Or if they do break a bone falling down them it’s going to be their own fault and not the fault of the steps.

Can you see I’ve been avoiding telling you what I’ve managed to come up with during my down time?

And no, it’s not finding a job. That chapter is closed.

What I've realized, and not for the first time, is that it’s all about doing what you like every day, even if it’s only for a few minutes. I know, not exactly earth-shattering and not exactly anything I haven’t figured out before. But it really is the key to staying mentally and physically alive.

The strange thing about this not-new revelation? Actually making yourself do it. Really enjoying the moments that make up the activities and celebrating those times as they happen takes planning and energy. So, I'm getting my sleep and making my plans.

You only get one life and I find a lot of people like to live either in the past, or harp on the injustices of the present, or cling to their belief that the future will be so much better. I don't want to be one of those people.

Bottom line for me?

Enjoy the moment. Do what I like to do. Have compassion. Love my family.

I know what you are thinking with one finger down your throat - dear god, don’t ever let him be alone for another whole week!

Don’t worry, my family returns from vacation today so next week you will be spared my too-much-time-alone ravings.

Until next Sunday . . .

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