I am in the country writing. And waiting.
My husband has taken our son back to college after a semester of forced hiatus, during which he worked in Scotland as an assistant Game Keeper and grew up by leaps and bounds.
I am waiting to see how the re-entry goes. And I am waiting here at home, because Henry says everything is less dramatic without me. Now I choose to imagine that can be a good and bad thing. But when you are going back to college and you are a young man, I can see you might relish less drama. Checking into your new room with a very cool, smooth father has to be better than the whirling dervish that is me.
OK, so I am waiting to see if the room is nice, the kids are kind to him coming back. If he finds food. No point in enumerating. I wait to be told, “It’s all good.” The kid has shelter, food and some friends. And I promised I would sit here and force myself to write until my husband returned.
Well, I cracked. I had cabin fever of the chair. Of the computer screen.
I couldn’t sit still one minute more.
Let’s not lie.
I got up to do wash.
I got up to pee.
I folded some laundry.
But I wrote pieces.
I edited others.
I wrote a funding letter.
I scrawled a profile of an author who wrote an amazing book called How Starbucks Saved My Life and I wish I had written that book, but I never worked at Starbucks.
I wrote more scenes for the opera I am attempting to forge from my book of essays about 9/11
And I fidgeted until finally I had to go outside and walk in the snow and failing light.
I hate to walk.
It seems so slow compared to my usual means of transportation: the bike. But I need to walk more. I need to move my body myself; this means not the bike moving me, which I am so used, to it is no longer exercise. I have to do this, as I have gained 15 pounds since October and now I have high cholesterol to boot.
So I bundled up country style. I put big socks on and pulled them up over my sweat pants. I tucked my dirty hair into a wool cap and I zipped up and literally ran into the open arms of winter.
I ran up the hill, well scampered pretty fast. I detoured into the cornfield so see how much corn the deer had consumed. Nearly every stalk left to dry has been chomped clean of all the kernels.
I listened to the wail of the wild turkeys. I heard the errant geese honking, and I walked up the hill over to where the free range cows roam, well, free. The farmer door raises these wild cows with no pens or fencing and even the bull roams free with long strings of spittle waving in the cold breeze.
I yelled, "HELLO, COWS." I mooed.
And I hollered "HELLO, CROWS." And did my best caw-caw.
I had walked about a mile and was freezing. Thin sweat pants make for nice writing togs, but lousy winter wear. So I turned around and on the way back, between looking for bird nests and cataloging the juniper trees with the most berries I discovered a small pond.
Now this was discovery the way Columbus “discovered” America. This pond had been here all along, but it took winter to reveal it to me. I needed the trees to be thinned of leaves and the under growth to have been beaten down by snows and melts. And there it was right on the road where I take my walks when I am being good.
It made me wonder what else is out here hiding from me in spring, summer and fall. I am going to find out, but first I am going to finish the list on the wall.