Attila and I have been enjoying each other's company. He has taken a few days off work. After sleeping through the first day, he has joined the family once more.
On Attila's second day at home, we tackled the yard work. Attila raked leaves, and cleaned out the evestrough. My efforts were directed at odds-and-ends that were easily completed within my five-minute window of comfort; removing leaves from the juniper bushes, pulling a few lemon balm plants from the lawn, etc.
My back will not allow sustained repetitive labor, like raking leaves. I can rake for five minutes, but if I continue beyond that point, I must suffer the consequences. Although medical advice has informed me that I should be taking medication for the pain, I prefer to avoid pills by never pushing my back past its limit. This has been working well. However, certain tasks demanded by home ownership are beyond my bounds.
This can be socially awkward; at least it is where we live. To some of our neighbors, I appear perfectly fit. They do not notice that I never lift any but the lightest of objects. They do not notice the back brace I wear if I overdo things. They have no way of knowing how many pain pills it takes to balance just a few minutes of foolish bravado.
What they do notice is that our yard is not "kept up" during Attila's busy season. Baleful stares often turn towards our property. Each time I interact with one of these denizens of the immaculate yard, they see fit to comment on my lack of industry and/or the state of the yard. It is usually couched as some sort of joke; the smiles do not mask the focus of their thoughts and judgements. Generosity of thought will never be ascribed to them.
Tiresome as they are, the surveillance provided by these same neighbors works to ensure a secure and relatively safe environment. A small price to pay really.
To celebrate his return to the kitchen, Attila prepared a special meal, Coquilles St. Jacques a La Provencale. I love scallops, particularly when they are prepared in this way. It was a meal befitting the occasion of Attila's reparation.
There has even been time for a Christmas shopping expedition. We send gifts to loved ones in Florida and Michigan, USA. These gifts must be sent early, so that they arrive before the big day, which is particularly important to the children who will receive them. One package of gifts has been wrapped and mailed. The final touches for the second will be taken care of today or tomorrow.
In addition to catching up with domestic duties, we have spent a great deal of time just sitting in our easy chairs. The clock ticks. Mist sleeps contentedly on my lap. Attila reads and dozes off by turns.
|RECIPES :: Cast
If I Knew Just What to Say
Composer Patrick Shelley Logier
(Unknown release played on www.blakeradio.com.)
On the Screen
Wind: S 22 km/h
Barometric: 100.0 kPa
Sunrise 7:27 AM EST
Sunset 4:54 PM EST
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