Posted tagged ‘morning ritual’

“I may just be on the outskirts of being okay.”

November 3, 2016

Neither of my two newspapers had the results of the game last night so it’s a good thing I stayed up until the end. This game 7 of the World Series had everything: a come from behind team who tied the game, a rain delay and extra innings. It was exciting. I was happy for the Cubs. They reminded me of the Red Sox who had gone so long before winning a series. They also had former Sox players and Theo Epstein who guided this, his second, team to a spectacular win.

I slept late this morning, a mirror under the nose late. It was eleven before Gracie and I woke up, but it didn’t matter. My routine stayed the same. I put the coffee on, went to get the papers and yesterday’s mail, came back inside, greeted Maddie and gave her morning treats, filled Gracie’s dry food dish, changed the dog’s water, put bread in the toaster, got coffee and my toast then sat down to read the papers. By this time it was closer to 12 than 11.

Gracie and I are going out today. I have a few errands I can do and a few places where I can shop. I am in the mood. It’s been a while since I last shopped just for the sake of shopping.

I’m finding myself talking out-loud more and more. Usually I start my conversations by naming Gracie or Maddie so it seems as if I am actually chatting with my pets. Maddie tends to ignore me. She even keeps her back to me. Sometimes I clap to make sure she hasn’t gone deaf overnight. So far she is just ignoring me, doing that superiority of a cat thing. Gracie is a wonderful conversationalist though she doesn’t say a word. She looks into my eyes the whole time I’m talking. She cocks her head every now and then which makes me think she might have a question. I don’t usually explain. I end most conversations with Gracie by patting her, a thank you for listening. Maddie just walks away.

 

“It had been like swallowing a gust of October wind.”

October 15, 2016

The morning came late for me, finally. I woke up at 7:30. The day is chilly but the sort of chill you know won’t last. When I went out to get the papers, I saw smoke from my neighbor’s chimney. She had turned on her heat to ward off the cold of last night. Another neighbor was returning after walking her dogs. We exchanged pleasantries and commented about the chill.

I have a few things to do around the house: a wash, putting in the second storm door and watering plants. Life is back to the humdrum.

Gracie and I are heading to the garden center. It is pumpkin time. I’ll buy a few for my front steps, a few different size pumpkins. I’ll also buy some gourds, the last of the garden fresh vegetables and some bread.

Gracie is snoring and sleeping on the couch. The two cats are sleeping in their usual spots. Their morning rituals never change.

Moxie is an acquired taste. It is like drinking medicine. I don’t know anyone who drinks it. A lot of people never even heard of it. I don’t like Dr. Pepper either. I love A&W root beer, and I love how it foams when you pour it. Right now my drink of choice is fresh apple cider. It is the drink of fall.

When I was a kid, I always had a school bag. When I was really young, my school bag was almost like a briefcase, square with buckles to close it and a strap which went across my body. It was sometimes plaid. When I was older, my school bag was the green one with rubber inside to protect the books from the rain. It had a drawstring. When I was teaching, I had a blue briefcase. I always liked carrying it. It made me feel a bit important.

When I became an administrator, I stopped needing a briefcase. I switched to a backpack and used it as a handbag, a purse. My first one was nylon. Now my backpacks are leather. The one now was made in Vermont, is black, and the leather is soft. It is my winter bag. My summer bag is canvas, a messenger bag. It is getting close to switching time.

“I believe in rituals.”

October 16, 2014

Last night it rained and today it is supposed to rain again, heavily. The sun is popping in and out of the clouds. The temperatures of the last couple of days have been in the 70’s with mild nights in the 60’s. My windows are opened and the front door still has its screen. Gracie sits there and looks out for the longest time. I wonder what keeps her interest as my street is a quiet one. I stand with her every now and then just to keep her company.

All my life I have had morning rituals. During my childhood the weekday mornings were always the same. Get up, get dressed, eat breakfast, do teeth then walk to school. For breakfast I always drank cocoa. My mother gave us toast and eggs and in the winter we had oatmeal, the sort which always has lumps. When I was in high school, I had to get up earlier and getting the bus was added to the ritual. In college, I grabbed breakfast on the way out, and every morning my friends and I would sit together in the canteen, drink coffee and race each other in finishing the newspaper’s crossword puzzle. Usually we worked in teams of two. When I was in Ghana, I had the same thing every morning: horrible coffee, two fried eggs and toast. The eggs were cooked in peanut oil, and they were the best fried eggs I ever had. If I had a break in classes, I’d walk to my house and have another cup of coffee and sit on the porch to drink it. Breakfast never varied. I had margarine on my toast as butter was imported and not in my budget. I’d sometimes add groundnut paste, the Ghanaian version of thick, thick peanut butter which needed to be mixed with peanut oil to make it spreadable. The Ghanaians used it as a soup base. Those mornings in Ghana were amazing, every single day.

When I started teaching, I got up 5, had two cups of coffee, read as much of the paper as I could, got dressed and left for school at 6:20. On the way to school, I’d stop at Dunkin’ Donuts for a medium coffee. I did that every weekday until I retired.

In retirement I haven’t changed much though now I get up whenever. I feed the cats, fill the water dish, fill the dog’s dry food dish, let the dog out, put the coffee on and get the papers in the driveway. Sometimes I have toast and sometimes I have a bagel but mostly I just have coffee, usually two cups, one with each paper. I take my time reading the papers. I then check my e-mail and finally start writing Coffee.

I think of my mornings as ritual, as almost sacred.


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