Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Sign o' the Holidaze

Seems like there is always something going on...and no time to slow down. A sign of the times perhaps?

No doubt my friend is correct in his assessment, but since I've managed to carve out my little slice of pressure-free bohemian living for the most part, I can sometimes forget how it is for people with more traditionally structured lives.

Except during December.

Even then, my own life remains mostly manageable (being invited to multiple holiday parties on the same night isn't so much a stressor as a first world choice) until it doesn't. We crossed that line late last week when there ceased to be enough hours in the day or night.

Mind you, I devote nine hours of each night to sleep, but still. My to-do list is growing like Audrey.

I think it began when I had to keep company with a sculptor moonlighting as a pulley-and-rope window repairman for nearly four hours when I had so many other things to do in the outside world.

I'm not saying he wasn't an interesting fellow or that his podcast recommendations aren't worth following up on, but I lost a lot of respect for him when he told me his fiancee doesn't like music.

Doesn't like music? I wanted to ask how you overlook that when you fall in love with a person, but it seemed presumptuous on our first meeting. But since he's convinced I need all my 1876 window frames redone, re-caulked and repainted, I'll get another chance to ask, assuming I can figure out a diplomatic way to address it.

It continued through a challenging weekend involving the disappointment of a much-anticipated walk being postponed, the guilt of being asked to save someone's ass by taking on an eleventh hour assignment I didn't have time to do because of existing deadlines, meanwhile executing all the necessary holiday falderal.

Today had been earmarked for another trip to the Northern Neck to assist Mom and Dad with more holiday prep and while I could have almost caught up on my to-do list by staying here, what kind of first-born daughter would I be if I had?

Besides, I knew they'd make me laugh and they did. Repeatedly.

After making sure the guest rooms were primped for her Wednesday guests (to include my godfather/Uncle Mickey, the only other family member besides me with dimples - a point of pride - and also downright hilarious in his own right), wrapping the rest of the presents for our 26-member family (using some Chipmunks wrapping paper she'd bought from a grandchild back when they did elementary school fundraisers - the youngest is now a sophomore at Temple), I was baking cookies while Mom sat in the breakfast room chatting with me.

In comes Dad, crossword puzzle in hand (he does both the RTD and Post daily, asking for her help only when absolutely necessary), pencil behind his ear, looking mighty pleased with himself.

"Actor in Cat Ballou? Lee Marvin, of course!" he crows. "Don't they know I go back far enough that such things were in my lifetime?"

Boom. My low-key and retiring Mom glances up, smiles and delivers. "Not much isn't."

Laughter: the best holiday medicine there is.

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