I have been fretting a bit lately. Correspondence with Ariel has been consistent throughout these months of her chemotherapy. I have not heard from her now for two weeks. She is about to begin radiation therapy and may be quite busy dealing with the change and the challenge. I worry about not hearing from her and must work hard to temper my fears and imaginings with patience and optimism.
I received a book for my birthday, entitled Roughing It In The Bush, by Susanna Moodie. As I read I compare the words, the politics, and the sentiments to those of my own ancestors who pioneered Canada.
It is the last day of February. The sun shines, the wind blows, and it is below freezing. There is promise though, in the dark widening patches of earth that swell with the strengthening heat of the sun. Of note as well are the happy songs of birds. Even through the exterior walls of our thickly bundled and wrapped house, come the excited calls of spring.
Recently, I was taken over by the mood for change. Having few pecuniary resources, travel or a shopping spree was out of the question. After considering my options, I settled upon the notion that rearranging the furniture was the most effective and inexpensive alternative.
Donning my protective back gear, I proceeded slowly towards my goal. I have learned over the years to minimize my efforts and maximize the results when engaging in lifting and shoving. One of the keys to my success is taking my time and considering my actions before I begin.
Over a period of eight hours, the living/dining area was transformed. The table now sits in the sunny section of the room, in front of the big picture window. We can sit over a snack and watch the birds, the plants, the bipeds, and the other animals that populate our street. We can haul a pile of papers or forms that need filling over to the table and use the natural sunlight to cheer us as we wade through the bureaucracy of life.
Where the table used to be is now a cozy reading room. Our easy chairs slightly turned toward each other, so that we may sit and chat as well as read. What I like best though, is that where the chairs sit is the former dining area; it is right next to the kitchen. Now I can sit comfortably and chat with Attila as he cooks. He hates having anyone in his kitchen while he is cooking. His attitude has always seemed quite reasonable and I would not dream of impeding his pleasure in the kitchen.
I made the decision to move the furniture in the early morning over a hot, steaming cup of coffee, after Attila had left for work. My rational was that if Attila did not like the arrangement, he could move everything back to the way it was when he departed. In the past, Attila had always been conscripted for the push and shove part of the job. This time, however, the project was conceived and executed without his knowledge.
Attila was surprised and pleased. He liked the arrangement very much. He likes change, particularly when it is associated with increased functionality and aesthetic. He especially likes changes that do not require the sweat of his brow to accomplish.
So ends February, wintry on the outside, warm and cozy on the inside.
|RECIPES :: Cast
By the Easy Chair
Towns Without Rivers
by Michael Parker
"But there is a higher motive still [for emigration], which has its origin in that love of independence which springs up spontaneously in the breasts of the high-souled children of a glorious land. They cannot labour in a menial capacity in the country where they were born and educated to command...
The hand that has long held the sword, and been accustomed to receive implicit obedience from those under its control, is seldom adapted to wield the spade and guide the plough, or try its strength against the stubborn trees of the forest. Nor will such persons submit cheerfully to the saucy familiarity of servants, who, republicans in spirit, think themselves as good as their employers."
Roughing It In The Bush or Forest Life in Canada, page xv-xvi, xviii-xix
by Susanna Moodie
Susanna's perspective on pioneer life seems much different than that of Andrew in 1821.
Wind: SW 33 km/h
Barometric:101.7 kPaSunrise 7:02 AM EST
Sunset 6:12 PM EST
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