My Week: Awash in Kakis

Talk about a “fiscal cliff”. My budget is right on the edge of one. Oh, I had already allocated money for Christmas presents. That’s not what caused the problem. It’s what I’ve done with the rest of it that’s gnawed away at it until there’s a thin line between safety and disaster.

DD and I had our sometimes weekly visit. She told me about the week she and merm had spent in Southern California with her in-laws. They’d been to all things Disney and had seen THE Wardrobe from The Lion, The Witch and…

THE Wardrobe

AND the ill-fated Mr. Tumnus.

Mr. Tumnus Turned to Stone

I’m so so jealous!

A bit later in the afternoon the phone rang again. I didn’t recognize the number but no one calls me without a good reason because the only people who have my number are those I’ve given it to. It was the produce manager at Walmart. He had a box of persimmons for me! I promised I would go in the next day to get them.

Go get them, I did. I also picked up Twinkle’s food and the nice lady applied the coupons I had to that purchase plus the previous one (I’d told her Hill’s was sending me coupons and she’d promised to do that) which saved me $10. Not too shabby.

Speaking of Ms Twinkle, she was showing ‘way too much interest in my dish garden—which includes philodendron. To take away the temptation, I sprayed the whole thing with Veggie Wash (hoping it wouldn’t do it in). The plant has lived and Twinkle has stayed off the dining table.

It had been raining off and on. It’s rained a lot lately. Between showers, I went over to my neighbor/cousins three times for one reason or another. That evening, Twinkle was sitting on my lap and I was watching a video on Netflix when the power went off. No blinking lights. No hiccups. Just BOOM and it was off. After a few minutes, I got my flashlight and went to the neighbors’ again.

My cousin said she’d tried to call City Hall but the line was busy. No telling how long it would be off. I mentioned I had candles but no matches. She gave me a lighter. We visited and then a clap of thunder convinced me I needed to get home before it started raining in earnest. Cousin grabbed an umbrella and walked me to the stairs leading up to the deck. I turned to hand her the umbrella as I was stepping onto the first step and caught my toe. She’d said she’d walk with me to make sure I didn’t fall. Oh, well. I fell, anyway. The look on her face was classic. I wish I had a picture of it. The only thing I did was hit my shin on the next step then pivoted and sat down. I don’t even have a bruise.

My windup radio came in handy to make noise. I turned it to NPR and heard stories about a woman who knits hats for the homeless, a civil engineer from Iran who was threatened by his countrymen because he was working with the Americans (he can’t get a full-time job here) and something else that was really interesting that I can’t for the life of me remember. I knew I should make a note of it.

The lights blinked on a few times but didn’t stay. The last time they did while I was awake, I looked at Twinkle and said, “I don’t trust it!” Just as I was reaching for the flashlight I’d had burning all that time, they went off again. I gave up, blew out the candles and made my way to bed.

In the middle of the night I woke to go to the bathroom and noticed the lights on the modem were on. The electric clock in my bedroom said it was a little after 2 a.m. It wasn’t too far off since it has a battery backup. I’d shut down both my netbook and my notebook. Not wanting to leave them that way, I started toward the kitchen. Making my way in the dark with my eyes closed made me a likely candidate to run into something which I did. I barked the other shin and that time, it brought blood. Not a lot but blood nonetheless. I washed it off and went back to bed.

Wednesday dawned bright and beautiful. When I went to the mailbox, I noticed this…

But--it's DECEMBER!!

The UPS man drove up as I was snapping pictures and told me he’d seen several trees in bloom.

My friend in Federal prison had sent me a Christmas card with his picture plus his annual gift of a calendar. The second picture is on it. They strike me as being sad because of the fake backgrounds. I know he’d give just about anything to be where there are real trees and real fireplaces to enjoy.

Christmas Picture 2012

Calendar 2012

Thursday afternoon, my friend from church called and said she was going to the university supermarket and did I want anything. I gave her a short list then later, she called me again from Costco. It’s so nice to have a personal shopper. Then the produce man called me saying he had another box of persimmons (kakis according to my niece-in-law) for me. I went in to pick them up yesterday. I sincerely hope that’s my last shopping trip until after Christmas. Talk about a zoo! My credit card has taken quite a hit.

The sun was shining but it was cold and windy. I was out in it long enough that, last night, I had a scratchy throat. Not feeling well at all, I went to bed at a little after 8. This morning, I woke feeling fine.

Now, I have a lot of things sprung on me at church but this one takes the cake and I really can’t blame it on anyone but me. Months ago, I found a hymnal my sister-in-law had given DH and me. I thought it was gone forever so I had replaced it. I don’t need two so I gave the extra one to the pianist at church. We’ve talked about playing a piano and organ duet for special music but we’d never gotten together to practice. WELL. This morning, she told me she’d remembered to bring hers (I keep mine at the church locked up in the organ) and could we play “My Tribute”? Like someone who isn’t thinking too clearly, I said okay.

That’s when I got rattled. During the lesson study, rather than trying to hear the teacher who doesn’t talk loudly enough, I studied the song. I hadn’t played it for months if not years and I’d never played it as a duet with a piano. When I was playing the congregational music (all Christmas carols) I was constantly hitting wrong notes. My hands were shaking (the left one more than usual) and I was regretting my decision.

I’d prayed that we’d do well in spite of everything and we almost did! I made a small bobble but not too bad and I praise the Lord even now that it’s over! The pastor told us he was impressed and said he leaned his head back and closed his eyes while he listened. To impress him even more, we told him neither one of us had played it lately and never together.

Before I left the church I told him I had a job. “??” I explained I’d been sending in corrections to the lessons on SSNET and, after the umpteenth time, I was asked to be a proofreader. He asked the same question my sister did, “Are you getting paid?” No, it’s volunteer. I mostly check the links at least a week ahead but if I find something else I report it, too.

On the Wordscraper front, we’ve had a snowman, a snowflake and now we’re playing on a board with holly leaves and red berries. Genese is really getting into the spirit of winter and Christmas. I’ve won the last four games but that can’t go on for long before Genese lowers the boom.

Twinkle is relaxing on her heating pad. I had quite a scare the other day. With my budget in the shape it is from all the kaki-buying, it was unnerving when her pad quit heating. Talk about a relief to discover she had, some way, somehow, unplugged it. I plugged it back up and all is well.

The world didn’t end yesterday. This time next week, Christmas will be over. Time marches on.

4 Responses to My Week: Awash in Kakis

  1. Mary Jane December 23, 2012 at 6:03 pm #

    With the terrible wind we had a couple of days ago I was afraid my electricity would go off–which would mean no heat–and I was thankful that it didn’t happen. Sorry it happened to you, but glad it wasn’t for too long.

    Quit beating yourself up falling and bumping into things!!It’s dangerous!

    • Tommie December 24, 2012 at 11:20 am #

      I’m looking at getting a UPS for my modem/router combo so I can use my cell phone if necessary when the power goes off.

      Yes, ma’am. I think I would have been okay walking home alone but it was nice for her to go to the trouble. At least I didn’t really hurt myself either time.

  2. Lila December 26, 2012 at 9:40 pm #

    What are the chances of your prisoner friend ever being able to celebrate Christmas as a free man?

    • Tommie December 27, 2012 at 7:42 am #

      Unless his time is cut radically, it will be Christmas 2014.

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