Sunday, October 22, 2017

Head to Toe

On a warm afternoon in October it seemed like a good idea to shed my shoes for a pedicure and then to shed that hair I've grown since June, too. So we took a little personal grooming trip up to our local shopping center, and now?

I'm ready for the fall social season.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Home Improvement

"You should come to Home Depot more often!" Heidi told me this afternoon.

We were standing in the tool aisle, but it could have been nifty containers, or maybe lighting. Our cart had a couple of mums, a keyhole saw (for our pumpkin), some velcro wire ties, and a clamp lamp.

"Why?" I asked.

"Because it makes you so happy!" she answered, and she was right. 

All around me I saw possibilities for improvement. That washer, those light fixtures, that key chain, snow shovel, arbor vitae-- I knew just the place for all of them, and on a gorgeous Saturday afternoon in October, with a 1 day work week behind me, and Halloween just around the corner, it all seemed within reach.

Friday, October 20, 2017

May the Road Rise up to Greet You

I parked the car this morning, grabbed my lunch bag and heavy, heavy backpack and started my long, long hike up to school. Halfway there, my path merged with a throng of students coming from the bus drop-off point.

"Ms. S!" a student hailed me with a genuine smile. He is one of the few kids I have had to call home about; we've gone to head to head more than a few times, and he is one of my genuine concerns. "I missed you!" he continued as I came up next to him, and then put out his arm and pulled me into a friendly embrace.

And what a quick and easy walk it was from there!

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Plus One

Since Heidi was working every day we were at the beach, it seemed a shame to head home the minute she was done. And so?

We didn't!

Instead, we enjoyed dinner on an oceanside patio, and one more morning at the beach, complete with perfect weather, sandwiches from Taste (no longer unlimited), dolphins, pelicans, hawks, and an eagle.

Once in the car, the traffic was light, and we made it home in no time at all.

I think I can make it through the workday tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Awkward

I was walking on the beach this morning when I saw a blonde woman coming toward me with a couple of yorkies. She was dressed in seashore chic and wearing sunglasses, but I thought she was a few years older than I am. As she approached, I wondered if it was someone I knew back when I lived here.

Lucy bounded over to see her dogs and I followed, peering closely into her face. “Are you Gaye?” I asked her, because for a moment I really thought it might be my friend.

She looked at me in confusion and a bit of horror. "I'm sorry?" she replied.

I shook my head. "Is your name 'Gaye'?" I clarified with a laugh.

"Oh!" she looked relieved. "No. I'm Debbie."

"I just thought you might be someone I knew," I explained.

She nodded and hurried on her way.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

In the Present Moment

Lucy and I headed north up the beach on our walk this morning for three reasons. I wanted to go the opposite way from yesterday; I wanted to start into the wind so that it would be at our backs on the return; and I wanted to explore that section of oceanfront that used to be "ours" when we lived here over 30 years ago.

We lived in four places just a couple of blocks off the beach in the stretch from 47th to 58th Streets. The biggest change was that the "new" Cavalier is gone, demolished to make way for some multi-million dollar homes, and a few of the houses that line the way were different, but the beach was pretty much the same: wide and empty in the way I used to love it in the off-season.

We walked all the way to 58th, and before turning around I headed to the trashcan at the foot of the walkway from the street to dispose of a bag of Lucy's. Up there the seagrass and dunes cut the wind, and I remembered some of the cold days I came to a little windbreak right here where the warmth of the sun did not have to compete with the frigid ocean breeze.

The sky was impossibly blue, like today, and the muffled surf was a lullaby as I lay on the warm sand and breathed the salt air. The light was white, so white I could still see it even with my eyes closed. And time was suspended, then like now, and so now like then, I lay down and closed my eyes.

Monday, October 16, 2017

... Is Still a Day at the Beach

There must have been 25 dolphins playing in the breakers this morning. "I guess they don't mind the rain," Heidi said as we watched them jump and splash from the shelter of our balcony. It turns out Lucy didn't mind it either. It's 42 blocks down to the fishing pier and back, but she must have covered three times that distance on our walk, chasing seagulls and bubbles and running away from the scary surf. She never found the courage to actually enter the ocean, but that was okay with me-- she got just as much of a work out with no rinsing required.