“The truth is that everyone is bored, and devotes himself to cultivating habits.”

This morning is already 41˚. That’s a hot spell, time for sunscreen. Gracie, my weather barometer, has been outside pretty much the whole morning. She comes in every now and then for water and to make sure I’m still here.

The feeders have lots of different birds today, even mourning doves and winter robins. Hopeful is the best description for a day like today. It’s nature’s way of reminding us that winter won’t last forever. There will be more snow, that’s inevitable, and chilling to the bone temperatures but soon enough every day will be in the 40’s and then the 50’s then climbing from there. Green shoots will start appearing in the front garden by the end of this month and will become a calendar of sorts. As they grow taller, we’ll be closer to spring. Once they bloom color fills the garden and spring finally gains hold. The air gets that smell of freshness, of growing things, of flowers and grass. Cold mornings give way to warmer afternoons. Some vestiges of winter hang around for a bit longer but that’s okay. I always think of them as a last gasp.

This has been a strange week. Little holds my interest, not even books I usually devour. I won’t even mention television. I haven’t seen anyone to talk to since Sunday; I don’t count the man at the dump or the woman at the pharmacy. We didn’t converse. I could be the main character in a last person on Earth book, soon to be made into a major movie. In my empty world, there would be no vampires or zombies running around trying to drink my blood or eat my entrails. I imagine blue birds singing and flying above my head sort of like in Song of the South or Cinderella. Flowers are always in bloom. The sun shines, and the day is perfect in the 70’s. Yup, I’m living in a Disney movie. I don’t know, though, how long I can go without people and conversation, but I figure I’d be talking to myself a whole lot, but I do that now. I usually direct my comments to Gracie who listens with a cocked ear but doesn’t ever answer. She’d be in the book too. I do have an ending for this book. There I am surrounded by blue birds, my faithful dog by my side as I walk through the park. All of a sudden I hear someone whistling a tune, yup, a happy tune. I stop and gasp, my hand in front of my mouth, and say,”Hello?” I hear, “Hello” right back, and it isn’t an echo. I am not alone. It’s a happy ending.

Now you can understand I really need to get out more!

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23 Comments on ““The truth is that everyone is bored, and devotes himself to cultivating habits.””

  1. Bob Says:

    The winter doldrums certainly play havoc with our minds. Being trapped inside for so many days of bad weather and long nights affects our mental health.

    While we are now super connected through the internet we have become islands of solitude in our homes. I have never spoken to my neighbors on one side of my house and the other neighbors, who actually came over and gave us a housewarming gift 16 years ago, now only wave while pulling out of their driveway if we are lucky enough to cross paths.

    In reality between you and my coworkers I have more communication daily than between my wife and my kids 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Part of it is there is just little to do around here in the winter. I’d go out in the rain or cold if something caught my interest, but little does.

      It’s true. I have more connection with people through my computer than with actual contact. I do see my friends down the street and chat with the neighbors across the street when I see them, but that’s it unless I invite people to dinner. My friends were here for the weekend last week, and I had a great time. We talked, we laughed and we just enjoyed each other’s company. It was fun and I know I need people.

  2. olof1 Says:

    I’ve had much the same week here, well I have been talking to people at work but my mind has been elsewhere to be honest. I can’t remember anything of what we were talking about 🙂

    I did feel like I was alone on earth today, I only heard a few birds singing, not that winter twitter but not quite spring song either. I guess tey just cleared their throats just in case spring would come insanely early this year 🙂 No other sounds but the ones made by the wind could be heard.

    Have a great day!

    • katry Says:

      It is probably just the winter doldrums settling in on all of us.

      It was warm so the birds were celebrating and being loud this morning. I swear the gold is coming back in the goldfinch but I might just be seeing things.

      We have a late spring here so I know I’m jumping the gun just a bit, but I can’t help it.

      Have a wonderful evening!

  3. im6 Says:

    We really should (I’m as guilty as anyone) get to know our neighbors a little better. There was a little old man across the street I never met, but I’d see him going to and from his car every day (apparently there are apartments in back of the main house that faces the street). Then a couple of weeks ago I noticed the car hadn’t moved. For days. So I asked a young man I have met who also lives in one of those back apartments if he’d seen the missing old man. He hadn’t, but seemed to think the old man was there because he THOUGHT he’d seen visitors. Still no old man sightings. Yesterday, the car had been moved, a truck was parked out front with belongings and a mattress/box spring strapped to the top. And strangers got in the car and truck and off they went. I never saw the little old man again. I hope he didn’t just die and go undiscovered for several days. Well, I hope that cheered you right up!

    • Bob Says:

      That reminds me of the story I read about the retired airline captain who was living alone in a small apartment when he died. The building superintendent and the police opened his apartment and they found it filled with stacks and stacks of boxes loaded with hotel little soaps, little bottles of shampoo and little bottles of conditioner which he had collected over his career. 🙂

      • im6 Says:

        Oh, Bob, that’s really, really sad. And probably not at all uncommon. I feel bad that I didn’t do more, but at least I asked about him and hoped that would spur his (closer) neighbors to investigate. One of my great fears (I joke about it, but I’m half serious) is getting into one of those “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” type of situations and no one finding me for days or weeks. Some days (or more) this blog and Facebook are the only contact I have with people. And I’m not one of those people who has their phone attached to their ear (who do they talk to all the time and for so long?!). So this could very well happen to me, but they’d probably only find empty Dr. Pepper bottles.

      • katry Says:

        That is truly a sad story. To think that’s how he’ll be remembered.

        I live alone and sometimes worry about that, not being found for a while. I just hope my neighbors will notice the papers cluttering the driveway.

    • katry Says:

      I have new neighbors at the house which faces my street. I saw her out and drove into the driveway to introduce myself. Last weekend her husband was walking by the house, and I stopped to say hello. I will make an effort to get them here for dinner some night when they are here for a weekend as this is their second home.

      Yup, I’m not kicking my heels in the air!

  4. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    Did the owls come from Song of the South? I seem to know them from somewhere but a Betty Boop cartoon comes to mind so I’m probably wrong.

    I spend a lot of time talking to my dog Rocky. I’m sure he doesn’t mind since he sleeps through much of my conversation.
    But I’m fortunate that some of my neighbors are friendly and we talk often even in the winter. The woman across the street uses the same plow guy as I do so we stand out in the street and have a nice chat as we watch Kurtt cleaning up our snow. I love winter sports. 😀

    Tomorrow is Ground Hog Day. Punxutawny Phil will probably see his shadow. He always seems to. I think it’s because of all the TV lights. It’s supposed to be cloudy here so our local ground hog, Ms G, will not see her shadow. Whatever happens, spring is still 6 weeks away. I hope it will be an easy 6.

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      The cartoon appeared when I googled Disney cartoon + black and white so I have no idea where they are from.

      Gracie at least looks at me when I talk to her. Sometimes I swear she really does understand.

      I talk to my sister every few days and my other sister every Sunday so at least if I go, let it be Saturday night. I always chit chat when I see the neighbors across the street, and I check on them if I don’t see movement. They are in their mid-70’s.

      I didn’t figure Phil was going to give us good news. He seldom does! I don’t want that horrific cold we had to come back and I’ll be happy!

      Have a great rest of the day!

  5. im6 Says:

    Just discovered this GREAT holiday — happening TODAY, February 1, so hurry or you’ll miss it!


    • katry Says:

      Now I want a tropical drink with an umbrella!

      • Bob Says:

        Similar to the idiots who will be in the stadium tomorrow night bare chested with grease paint on their upper body with the colors of either the Seahawks or the Broncos. “We’re not cold we drank so much alcohol before the game that if we had a spark we would ignite”. If they had a brain they would take it out and play with it during the game.

      • katry Says:

        At least it will be warmer than it has been for the idiots with no shirts. Some fans are just rabid for their teams. I don’t mind. It doesn’t affect in any way, gives me a chuckle usually.

    • Caryn Says:

      I followed the link and read it and then laughed out loud because the ad right below was Follow the Death Records.

  6. Lori Kossowsky Says:

    Hi Kat,
    Winter doldrums even happen in California. I think part of it is the sun goes down so early. I haven’t spoken to many people either, except by phone. My car won’t start, so until I have my friend charge it, I’ve been stranded.. I could call AAA, but there isn’t anywhere I wanted to really go. I do need a new battery and two new tires..
    I’ve been sad about the death of Pete Seeger ( thanks for the Seeger songs). Most of my sadness, I believe are the memories of going to his concerts and missing the people who went with me. My mom was a fan of his, and had taken me to NYC to see him perform at a very small gathering.
    It’s time to have a conversation with Cookie.
    Don’t get cold lounging outside in your grass skirts drinking your tropical drink.
    Lori and the Crew

    • katry Says:

      Hi Lori,
      I was taking some encouragement from the sun staying up longer, and here you are talking about it going down early. I can notice here that the day is longer.

      Pete Seeger influenced so many, but I think even he would say he had lived a long life and seen so much. He left us a huge legacy.

      I’m thinking the deck and me sitting there with a coconut drink with that umbrella!

      A snoring Gracie, two sleeping cats and one awake Kat

  7. Cuidado Says:

    How strange that this should be the topic. I pulled my arse out the door yesterday to visit a friend who has no phone or vehicle, a modern day hermit. We were complaining about being bored yet we both have plenty to do. I just feel blah. Things that I normally love to do in winter such as snowshoeing and skating have no appeal. The result of all this – I’ve gained 5 pounds! I vowed to start today to do something about it. I am going snowshoeing today no matter what though it really has no appeal. Glad I’m not alone in this.

    • katry Says:

      I think a whole bunch of us hit the wall at some time in winter. I can read only so many books before I’m tired of reading. I’m thinking more movies, but that’s not cheap. I could organize my closet, but that would be a sign I’ve gone over the edge!

  8. splendid Says:

    Dearest Kat & coffee friends, I can agree totally with so many of you and the lack of gumption that permeates this season. I was surprised to hear you mention ‘Song of the South’ Kat. I purchased the DVD on line many years ago from a dealer in England. My children had never heard of it and I felt it was something for them to see. As young adults their opinions are vastly different than when they were children. But I do believe they enjoyed much of the music and sentiment expressed, let alone the cultural references that they understand much better than most. I hope you get out to talk to some others soon Kat, and I will begin working on the extra weight I too found in this warm house so far this Winter. xoxoxox to you all

    • katry Says:

      I was out to breakfast this morning so the week is starting out better than last, but even my favorite breakfast spot had few people. I think most are just fine sitting inside and ignoring the cold. Winter does makes us sloths!

      Thanks for the good wishes!!

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