"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Day After

In some ways it's rather better. In others, worse.

--By staying in bed till 10 a.m., I caught up on my sleep.
--I needn't go anywhere at all today.
--I feel I could actually accomplish some writing that isn't blog-related.
--I managed to practice the mandolin, after a two-day gap.

--The new, surreal silence and stillness of mealtime. Huskies tend to be very vocal. During breakfast and dinner preparations, Lola danced about, letting out ear-splitting barks. "Feed me first!" she would shriek. "Feed me quickly! Hurry up! I want that bowl now--what's taking so long?" During this performance, the young ones would keep far, far away from her, Ruth under my dining room chair, Jewel on the landing. Now they come right up to the kitchen counter and sit politely, tails thumping expectantly.
--Ruth, not normally a wanderer, moves from room to room, seeking. Hurts to watch her do this.
--The footprints still embedded in Wolf Mountain, which I noticed this morning when I went out to feed the birds.
--This huge empty space on the Persian carpet here in my office. Never came in here yesterday so hadn't confronted it till now.

I'm extremely grateful for the kind condolences offered by my blog visitors, via the comments section and private emails. They are a greater comfort than I can adequately express.

Last night I attended a legislative dinner hosted by the state's dental society, having RSVP'd a couple of weeks ago. So despite being thoroughly gutted, red-eyed, and emotionally exhausted, I had to transform myself from a mess of mourning into a proper state rep, in nice clothes and make-up and name tag and all of that. Didn't much look forward to being thrust into a social situation, but it turned out okay.

I chauffeured my local legislator buddy and all along the way we could see the enormous moon rising up. I'm sorry I didn't get a picture, it was quite a sight--the prelude to the later eclipse. Our meal was excellent: beautifully cooked steak with baked potato and steamed veg, with apple crisp รก la mode for pudding. Much appreciated by me, who had forgotten to eat all day. The program was informative and interesting. Our hosts were very pleasant people. I sat between a lobbyist and the Executive Director and enjoyed getting to know them.

I got home to find the Chap and the girls watching American Idol. I tried to concentrate, but occasionally heard myself making random comments like, "I'm so glad we had pasta over the weekend, it was her favourite meal." Or, "Remember how she stole the veal right off the counter on her second day at the Lodge?" I wasn't being maudlin...just airing fond memories as part of the process.

We all went outside around 10:30 to view the eclipse. It was happening right above our backyard, and was simply magical. We had a full, clear view of the reddish moon surrounded by Saturn and the Regulus star and others, all so bright and brilliant. I got a picture but the image wasn't crisp enough to show all the detail, so not worth posting here.

When we got cold, we came inside and discovered we could also watch from the bedroom window.

We headed back downstairs to finish up the newspapers and watch the tv news. At some point I fell asleep with Jewel nestled against my chest, Ruth stretched out along my legs.

After work today the Chap heads down to Boston, where tomorrow he attends the annual luncheon of a hereditary society to which he belongs. He'll probably do some museum-ing and perhaps see a friend before returning Saturday.

For me, there's an upside and a downside to his absence. If--when--I get a bit weepy, no danger of setting him off. But he won't be here to hold onto.

On this gorgeous day, the girls and I are surrounded by mounds of snow and ribbons of sheet ice (formerly known as driveways). Skating conditions on the little lake appear to be excellent. At the weekend I saw some of our neighbours out there.

Our octagon deck--the least-used of the three--is still covered, but the snow has pulled away from the sides and edges so it looks like a giant snow puff.

There's more snow in the forecast, expected tomorrow evening. This next round should take us over 90 inches.

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