Thursday, January 24, 2008


Christmas was kind of depressing for me. Family issues, the looming financial wreck of trying to stay on here in this big old farmhouse, and being scheduled to work right through Christmas at my paying job in the city gripped me in an uncomfortable vise of dark emotions.
I had to really struggle to maintain any kind of cheerful attitude.
One bright spot was the enormous table of delicious pot-luck food we, the unfortunate ones who had to work, brought in to share with each other on Christmas Day.
Another bright spot was when Oldest Daughter and Son-in-Law took me out for a lovely lunch on Christmas Eve. Granddaughter kept us entertained with a non-stop, silly, Kaylee's point of view rambling commentary, quizzes, stories and jokes, in at least three languages.
On the way home in the car, I played the game "what would you rather..." with Kaylee.
"What would you rather," I asked her. "Lose your hearing or lose your ability to talk?"
"Lose my hearing!" she proptly replied.
That made us all laugh, and even Kaylee could see the humour in that.
"You don't take after your Mom or Gramma!" I declared.

Son-in-Law laughed, but wisely refrained from making any comment.

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fridge magnets

First, the yo-yo temperatures of the January thaws have made for some interesting foggy/frosty things happening around here:

My best friend Fiona has the most wonderful fridge. Or, to be more precise, her fridge door is what fascinates me. Like many people, she has fridge magnets on it.... and, lots & lots of newspaper clippings, photos, art work done by her kids, and lists. Looking at her fridge door can take a while.....
It was on Fiona's refrigerator door that I came across this fridge magnet, a naive childish drawing of a girl with straggly hair in ballet tights and a tutu holding a polka-dot heart-shaped balloon with the caption that reads: "I Love to Dance. Life is that dance we do in the space between 'making it happen' and 'letting it happen.'"
Now, I have to confess, that in-between space, that in-the-meantime place, is usually very uncomfortable for me. And yet, if I believe the journey is more important than the destination, why is that? Why am I impatient to find out how it all turns out? Am I still the "immature reader" as described by my high school English teacher, Mr. Jurianz, who reads only for plot?
Yes. Yes, I am. (reminds me of a meditation mantra I just learned which means I am That.)
You see, I have finally had to admit to myself that living in my big old farmhouse, which is so expensive to heat, etc., commuting such a long way to visit my daughter, to go to the gym or to run with my running group, or to go to my paying job, none of it makes financial sense. And as my running and work out schedule ratchets up in intensity, I have been spending less and less time at home. Does it make sense to drive all that way only to drop into bed, sleep, gulp down a breakfast and go again -- even I'm doing that in a lovely old farmhouse in a secluded rural landscape? Of course not.
So I have finally decided to move. Closer to my paying job, closer to my daughter, granddaughter and son-in-law, closer to my gym and running group in the city. I have had to face my "monsters" re city living and envision the possibility that an urban dwelling can also be visited by wonderful light and wildlife. It may even be possible to have a garden, even if it is in pots. And after all, we northern gardeners have to learn to enjoy gardening in pots or be limited to a terribly short season dictated by our climate!
All this because I have really and truly re-committed myself to my running again. The old knee is behaving itself and as I get stronger the knee is better supported by strenghened muscles around it. I have a goal and a dream. I'm going back to Ethiopia to run the 10 km Great Ethiopian Run in November and I hope to raise money for Ethiopia Reads (more on that to come). Lessons were learned back in March 2007 re what it takes for me to be ready for the altitude and mountainous terrain of Ethiopia, so no mamby-pamby 6 km runs on the gentle slopes around Sturgeon Point for me. I have to get serious here!
Meanwhile, I feel as my whole life is up in the air! Do I enjoy the dance of this in-between place? Depends on when you ask. In the morning -- after a cup of coffee or two, mind -- I anticipate the changes with eagerness, wondering how the adventure will play itself out. At night, when I'm tired, I worry myself to distraction. I'm pulling my hair out! Sigh!
I'll try to keep you all posted as I can.