Last week, I didn’t leave the house from one Sunday to the next. Or, more accurately, I didn’t go to town. I did leave the house a handful of times: to go running and to visit my mother one afternoon, and another afternoon a friend came out to chat. But mostly, I was at home. It was okay. Boring yes, but not torturous.
And now this week is turning, unintentionally, into a repeat performance. I hosted a writing group meeting on Monday, and Tuesday a new-to-me friend came for a visit, but beyond that, I’m just here.
It’s weird, but the more I stay at home, the less I want to go anywhere. A quick trip into town to go the library or pick up groceries begins to feel like a hurdle and I find myself putting it off as long as possible, and then putting it off some more. I can see how a person might become a recluse. Just give in to the suck of inertia.
So what do I do all day long, you ask?
Well, mornings are pretty fixed. I run (except for when my ankle swells up for no good reason, humph), shower, and then writewritewrite, only taking breaks to grab breakfast, pee, and do a bit of homeschooling.
The long afternoons are a little more challenging. I pick raspberries and pop grape eyeballs from their skins and do yet another canner load of tomatoes. I feed my starter and make granola and put a pot of dried beans on to simmer. I tell kids to wash dishes and hang up laundry and sweep the porches and put things away. I read or nap and sometimes, like now, I blog.
Occasionally I get irrationally grumpy (hello, PMS and Stupid Ankle That Won’t Let Me Run) and then my son pulls a pantyhose over his head and makes me laugh.
Other simple pleasures that get me through: NPR, Hershey Kisses, and books. Right now, I’m reading Esperanza Rising to my younger son, and to myself: Ask Again, Yes, and Slow Man, which I am, predictably, taking forever to finish. (Of note: last week I whizzed through Three Women and then paced the house wishing I had someone to discuss it with.)
Evenings are reserved for more reading, sometimes Netflix (Schitt’s Creek, with my younger daughter; The Hunt, with the three younger kids; Barry and season three of Stranger Things, with my husband; and, as of tomorrow, season ten of The Great British Baking Show, whoo-hoooo!!!!!!), and getting all wild and crazy with fruit leather.
All of them were a hit, but I liked the grape banana best. Or maybe the plain grape. Or the grape applesauce?
The swirl version was especially pretty.
My younger son keeps accidentally calling grape leather fruit “tar.” It does bear a resemblance.
In other news, my hair is still falling out. This is the handful I got this morning after its twice weekly washing.
What is wrong with me? I’m taking great care of it — no heat, sulfate-free products only, and minimal washings. I haven’t brushed it for two years, only gently combing through it with a pick about once a day, sometimes less.
Adding oil to my hair: now there’s something I never thought I’d do.
And so go my days, the hours spooling endlessly. It’s both tedious and productive, satisfying and dull. I grit my teeth and hunker down, doing my best to take advantage of the quiet. Sooner or later, something will pop up and — poof! — all traces of calm and boredom will instantly vanish.
Oh, look at that! A bunch of Puerto Ricans just walked in the door!!!
And we’re off!
Or at least they are, to go get pizza. I’m at home, typing this.