Sunday, November 23, 2008

Late November observations

So here's a tip: Don't mix toilet bowl cleaners. Not without reading the labels first, at least. My throat is still sore. My brother-in-law the doctor thinks I made mustard gas.

Here's another tip: Relocating is great, fun, hard, an adjustment, and never a cure for everything. Yesterday was Bag Day, a local shopping tradition. Bring a bag and you get 20 percent off a single item. I was downtown anyway so I went around and shopped awhile but it took me two or three stores before I realized it was a single item, not the entire shop. So, not so good. A friend at a party that night said my being there confirmed her theory that only people who didn't grow up here participate in Bag Day, kind of like New Yorkers would never go to the Macy's parade at Thanksgiving. She did say if she had already been there, as I was, she would have gone too. A neighbor goes around and buys gift certificates but lots of stores won't sell them at a discount.

I am not posting regularly, duh, but am going to try to post every Sunday. Here's the news about the house: Our electrician took down all the hemlocks in our front yard for free. He wants the firewood. We have piles of brush to chip, and the front of the house looks like a war zone, or maybe a construction site, what with the path of the excavator cutting through the pachysandra still visible. And we can see our neighbors -- yikes! and they can see us! We do like all the sun streaming through the windows, that's really nice, although that has to do with the leaves off the oaks all having dropped too. Winter is odd that way: Less light from the sun but more light because the leaves are gone.

I've been asked to sit on a local theater company, the New Century Theatre, and I think I'm going to say yes. I have a very full plate but this is a really great company, with lots of interesting, smart people, and they have a great track record, nearly 20 years going on an Equity contract and they are in the black! I haven't seen a show yet but now we have season tickets and I am excited to be working with these fine people.

This is a turkey weekend: Yesterday I made a turkey breast for a party last night and right now I'm making a whole bird, an 18-pounder, for a party tonight. We're going to Cate's brother-in-law's for dinner on Thursday and then to Long Island to Dave's family for the weekend. I actually like turkey but I'm going to have to pace myself, given that it's on the menu four times in eight days.

Dave's job is turning out to be good and interesting, although I think a union job at a state university is very different from a in Soho. We are both working 8 to 4 so we are all home by 5 or so, usually, depending on Lily's schedule. I'm getting to the gym more, although less now that we're closing the February issue. We've now got a white board that's actually silver and we write in the week's events, Lily's classes, my meetings, who is picking her up, etc.

And then I write what the menu is, so I don't have to have that "what are we eating tonight" brain freeze every time I get home. We are both cooking up a storm and freezing it. So we have lots of soups for lunch and lots of soups for dinner too. Today Dave made a lentil vegetable soup and I made some more apple sauce.

The main difference with us both working, it seems, is that the house is dirtier. But I try to keep after the laundry, sheets, and bathrooms. That's how I poisoned myself this morning.

The temperature doesn't rise above the low 30s lately, and we see flurries often now. Everything feels pretty stark, cold, dark, the bare trees are skeletal against the sky. And there's so much sky. The sun is cold, even if there's no clouds. Did you know that during the winter, Earth is actually at its closest point to the sun in its elliptical path? It's just that the northern hemisphere is tilted away from the sun, so it's chilly and dark. Astronomy 101. Thank goodness Wellesley had distributional requirements, much as I didn't like taking them at the time.