Here are a few of my favorite online haunts:
[This is the site I visit to fantasize about
living in Toronto again, which is almost
day during the winter]
Jonathan Cainer's Zodiac Forecasts
[This is where I visit in the morning, when
I need a positive spin on things past, present
[This is where I go to see what Canadians
are up to, sometimes I even buy things from
the businesses listed there.]
Environment Canada Weather
[This is the site I visit every morning,
and before every road trip during the winter]
The wind awoke me this morning. It moaned quietly through the trees just outside the window. When curiosity finally overcame me, I opened my eyes; I expected to see the backlit tree branches blurred by a white haze. In the city, there is always a backlight to provide silhouette. Sharp contrast revealed swaying black lines across the sky; no snow. I closed my eyes and dozed. Ten minutes later the wind rattled the window. Again, I gazed from my pillow up into the stripped canopy. The wavering branches were blurred; the snow had arrived.
Hours later, it was still early morning when Attila waved goodbye from the driver's seat of his van. It was a pretty as a picture. The streetlights swayed slightly as snow danced around them in a whirling halo. Two tracks in the fresh snow followed Attila’s departure into the day. I waved from the warm haven of the front window. He waved from the warm machine as it carried him away from home.
Another hour has passed and here I sit, staring into the thickening light. The wind still teases the morning, but the snow has stopped, for the moment at least. I can see that this will be a day of sudden reversals.
The telephone rang just now. It was Attila.
"You’d best stay home unless it’s really important." his cell-phoned voice scratched, "The roads are treacherous. Save your errands for tomorrow if you can."
I thanked him for the heads-up. Already I am re-planning my day to suit the weather. How lucky I am to have that alternative in the face of inclement weather.
On Sunday last, I asked Attila if he would mind committing a couple of hours to help me rearrange my office space. The intention was simply to move the furniture about, so that the desk faced the window. Gazing out the window is a necessary part of every day.
One thing led to another and the project turned into a "grand purge". My office has been accumulating "stuff", unchecked since 1998. Everywhere there are piles of "tech" notes, outdated documentation, and like detritus of modern life. After sorting through papers for hours on Sunday, I was exhausted. Focus is required to ensure that documents and notes containing sensitive material be sorted from the rest.
There were four categories of papers to deal with; documents still needed, documents to be discarded (printed both sides), documents for scrap paper (printed one side), and sensitive documents to be destroyed.
After sorting all day yesterday, it seems this project will be completed today. The documents-to-be-discarded pile of paper is over a foot deep, as is the stack of documents-for-scrap-paper. Shockingly, the sensitive-document stack is even deeper. These documents will be burned.
The "domino effect" has come into effect. While sorting out my working space, I unearthed many personal letters, cards, and memorabilia saved over the last five years. All of these discoveries must be relocated. This lead to a rearrangement of all such treasures collected over the years.
I am getting old. The collective volume of treasures increases with each passing year. The "grand purge" project has leapfrogged into a complete reassessment of the treasure trove. This is very time consuming. The temptation to reread those wonderful letters, from friends now seldom seen, from friends gone and buried, from small children who once sat on my knee and kept me perpetually exhausted; that temptation is too great to resist. I visit my past, my ghosts, and my spent youth.
I am reminded of a phrase used in a letter I wrote at the age of thirteen. Forced to attend a family holiday, the boy friend was left behind for several weeks. I wrote to him daily. I wrote to him of the "bittersweet melancholy" of separation. It was entirely heartfelt. Here I am, experiencing a "bittersweet melancholy" decades later, the same sentiment in a very different context.
Just as a point of interest, I married that boy friend, years later, and lived to regret it bitterly. I should have known better. When I returned from that family holiday as a young teenager, he ridiculed me mercilessly for using such flowery language to say I had missed him. We were temperamentally unsuited. That marriage was just one of those monumental errors that haunts an entire life span. I understand why I chose to marry such a being; I forgive myself. However, I have not forgotten just how "human" I can be.
As I sit at the keyboard, I can see the snow drifting down through the trees. My line of vision includes a storage cupboard, partially emptied and surrounded by stacks of memories just waiting for my company. So will go the day.
|RECIPES :: Cast
By the Easy Chair
Death in the the Holy Orders
by P. D. James
Festivus: SHOUTcast.com's annual tribute to the holiday season.
via iTunes radio
Wind: W 13 km/h
Barometric: 103.1 kPa
Sunrise 7:36 AM EST
Sunset 4:50 PM EST