Monday, March 16, 2009

Love Handles of Steel

This past weekend was a seventy two hour period when everything seemed to go completely awry, but in that good way. It was one of those miraculous events I pray will happen all the time but never actually expect it to -- a completely unintended “selfish” weekend. But wait, let me back up for a second.

For some unknown reason Matt and I had plans booked from Friday night through Sunday this past weekend, something I really dislike because then it feels like there is no time to just be, but one of the things we had really wanted to complete was the final installation of the entertainment center; with so many plans scheduled however that was seeming more and more like a lost cause as the week drew to a close. (If you do not already read my other blog GLR please at least check out the final “Free Furniture” installment for details on this hilarity)

A Tarot card reading and playing Rock Band with our nephews were on the table -- both extremely fun endeavors -- but starting on Thursday evening, the onion known as our weekend started to lose its layers.

My Evil Stepmother (disclaimer for new readers: this is what she calls herself, she is actually quite awesome) emailed me to let me know that her friend who does the readings had come down with the flu and was not going to be able to make it after all. We would have to reschedule.

The outer skin of Friday night was stripped so we had a nice quiet evening at home amongst the clutter of unfinished furniture and tiny pieces of rock salt we had been unable to vacuum up for what felt like months due to loss of traffic paths. But since I could do nothing about the cluttered mess that night, I jumped on the computer and there was another message waiting for me.

Melissa was concerned because -- W had a fever and did not seem so well, would we be around in the morning to chat about it, maybe we should just reschedule to be safe. Wow, two for two just peeled off all of Saturday’s layers as well.

Wait a minute, for real? All of our plans just got proverbially trash-canned so now we can get our house back together again? Ecstatic was not a grand enough emotion to express how happy I was to be blown off, it was time to take full advantage and do all the things we have been wanting to do for ourselves but have not made time to get done. Hence the inadvertent “selfish” weekend.

I should be fair and say that it is not as if I do not want to see people or spend time with family or friends, truly I love hanging out and would not make the plans in the first place if it was something I did not want to do but when I envision another full week of living in my literal house of chaos, it elates me to no end when suddenly the time needed to de-clutter makes itself available. I love how things work out sometimes (although not the reasoning of a sick friend or nephew, that sucks and I hope they both feel better very soon).

Matt has been talking about getting himself a bike for some time now because it would greatly reduce his commute stress and also get to work on that growing gut that, just like my ass, magically seemed to appear one morning. He is not a picky guy and does eventually want to get back to the level of mountain biking he used to do but for now he would be happy with a bike that can safely get him to and from the subway station on the other side of town without having to endure the odorific adventures of the bus. With Saturday plan free we hit the road early to acquire him all the assorted gear he would need for getting started. He skipped the basket though which I am sure some of you will understand the reasoning behind.

Then we came home to our 600 square foot apartment filled with half built furniture and spewed tools…with a bike to add to the bedlam. Super. This required drastic measures.

So we decided to just get out for a while and finish up the list of stuff we had planned before we trapped ourselves inside with screwdrivers, hinges, hardware and a whole lot of cursing. It is not considered procrastinating if you still fully intend to complete the task. And after all, it was in the mid fifties, sunny and only about eleven in the morning. We hit the grocery store, my favorite sub shop over in Malden, Ace Hardware and the library. Not necessarily in that order but the stop I was most excited about was the library.

One of these days I will tell the story about living in Springfield before construction was complete and how two people and a cat really can survive with no kitchen, two outlets for 1500 square feet, barely a bathroom and only a half finished bedroom with a 10” television as the only source of entertainment, but today is not that day. Suffice to say the library became a necessary requirement for computer access as well as a wonderful escape from squinting at a shiny box of static. This past weekend I felt the same way about the advantages of the library as we acquired our first card in well over four years and both walked out with something interesting to absorb.

It felt exhilarating like I was doing something secretive -- I walk into this great big limestone structure and without spending a single penny come out carrying a hardcover and a full book on cd lesson in French. Cool. They even ask you to whisper inside, further enhancing the mysterious vibe. Since that was our last stop and Matt had most of the entertainment center duties for a while, I got to reading Angels & Demons by Dan Brown (the guy who brought us The DaVinci Code) because the movie is coming out soon and judging from experience with his other novel, I wanted to finish the book first.

I forgot how much I enjoy reading. I got through about a third of the 600 page book that day. The library is going to be seeing a lot of me.

With the furniture debacle behind us as the glorious sun rose on Sunday morning, Matt could finally put his bike together to go for a ride and I could get busy on reducing apartment anarchy. He went to time the ride to the subway and I pulled out the vacuum and a new filter. No one should ever be this excited to sterilize. Put it this way, if cleaning the house were an Olympic sport I would have medaled in gold yesterday. I even dusted the dust. After Matt got back we just kind of hung out and soaked up the last of the warm Sunday sun.

And then I inhaled a deep breath of clean, fresh, spring air as my blood flow slowed back down to the nice relaxed state it pumps at when my world is back in order. Man, I can not wait to start the next project.


Suldog said...

To paraphrase Blanche DuBois, "I have always depended upon the kindness of serendipity." Glad the same seemed to work for you during the weekend.

Bridgete said...

Matt didn't want a basket because it's hard to be a gangsta with a basket on your bike. ;)

pastrywitch said...

I LOVE the library. Especially the reserving books online feature - it's like shopping at amazon, with no nasty bills :)

Karen said...

I cleaned out my refrigerator today and felt the same way :) There were- count 'em- 13 tupperware-like containers filled with bits of this and that. Got rid of those, washed down the insides, drawers, etc., then sat back to enjoy the day :)

Dave King said...

An enjoyable canter.

Chris Stone said...

love the title! and matt might come around about the basket.... though a bike bag works pretty well!

got a finished pic of your entertainment center? looked awesome as you were working on it.

ginger said...

heehee...bridgete's funny.

sounds like a lovely time. i also love the unlayering of proverbial onions...not dan brown though. he irks me. i realize i'm in the minority though.

Judi FitzPatrick said...

Ah, the library, my favorite place to go - as you say, all those lovelies to be borrowed for free.
Please send some of that energy my way, I could use it!
Hugs, Mum