The dust is still settling with our 3 weeks of being on the road to relocate one adult child to an apartment near her medical school in Michigan and then to visit her older brother and our DIL so my wife could see their new-to-them in NW Montana. I figure that between the back and forth of these two trips but just over 7,000 miles on my car, but it felt longer on our human rear-ends. But it was progressing the lives of two of our three kiddos, so there was nowhere we’d prefer to be. Now I want to pack up and head to southern California to see our third and youngest – but the good folks at my company have an opinion about what I should be doing to earn the money they keep dropping into my checking account.
Oh well – they do have a point.
As I get older, I’ve noticed how I’m ever more tempted to procrastinate whatever I don’t want to do – hoping perhaps that it will somehow go away or become unneeded, or perhaps someone else will pick it up and do it. I’ve been pounding away at work stuff pretty regularly since I was in high school, so, let me think, that was in the early 1970s and now we’re clawing our way through the 2020s so that means I’ve been at this for 50+ years.
What I do for “work” has become part of what defines me. As I return to it, I’m beginning to think that I should get my act together and plan out my retirement. This would make a lot of expectations go away and theoretically give me more time to write, walk, explore or whatever I want and can afford.
Our peer blogger, Marsha of her ‘Always Write’ blog this week encourages us to match one of our creative projects to the theme of work and pair it with a quote. Okay, I should be able to find a quote that speaks to me, so I looked about and found one I do like.
“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” ~~ Mark Twain
Well that both hurts and rates high on the “Amen” scale, so I’m going with it.
I do have one success to report on. We have redwood trees scattered about our property. They were planted by the developer who build the neighborhood, who was compelled by the city to do so. Two of our trees are very – very badly placed and, while beautiful to look at, and stand beneath during hot days, they are slowly destroying anything around them that looks like concrete – like our driveway which is all of 4 feet away from them.
So, I snapped a photo of the “work” I’m having done on our driveway. There were three ‘squares’ and parts of two curbs that had to be torn up and replaced.
The real painful part of this effort is how the price of this kind of work has sky rocketed thanks to the policies of our current national leadership (but enough said on that).
It took me months to even get a contractor to call me back about bidding the work. That was the second most annoying part of getting this done.
If you look closely, you can see one of the two trees responsible for this carnage. The second is right behind it and yes, I managed to accidentally line them up so one is covering the other. Then there are the lovely geometric craters which used to hold cracked concrete slabs. We’d put up with the cracks and holes until we risked damaging our cars by driving over one hasty hole and uplifted giant shard. As I type this, our nice new, uncracked slabs are drying. They’re hard enough already that we can walk on them but cars – no yet so our parking area is still off limits to them.
In the mean time, I had one escalation at work this week and it kept me up until 1am in the morning after a full day of work so I was pretty useless the next day.
I recall being able to do this stuff for days with limited sleep. Man, I miss those days – I think.
On the writing front, my routine is getting back to normal slowly as I’m still trying to catch up on thing left undone by being on the road all that time.
I produced a new 995 word story for Marsha’s Story Chat, but that won’t be published until this coming Tuesday. I’ll send out an invitation when it goes live.
I also created a new 99-word story for the Carrot Ranch weekly challenge. It was an odd prompt this week. The challenge was to write a story that included the simple phrase, ‘Red Convertible’. I knocked it around for a few days but was seeing nothing, until an idea popped to prepping-for-retirement mind and this 30-second read fell into my lap in just a few minutes. It should leave you smiling or smirking.
Click here to read: Into My Sunset
You may recall that I have an ongoing project of refreshing my older memoir stories and this week I cleaned up one more you should enjoy. It’s a grammar school boy story and this time, we took to the trees, well, just one special tree, to combine a normal game of tag, but played out in the branches high above our school parking lot.
This was fun raised to the level of madness, I know, but now that we know everyone survived, it’s funny and dramatic and a tad scary because most small boy stories are a tad scary by definition. This story should take you almost 3 minutes to enjoy. It might feel dangerous but you’re actually fully safe from the position of a reader despite feeling like you’re up there clinging to the branches when you’re not climbing madly to avoid being tagged.
Click here to read: The Tree Tag Adventure
That’s it for me this week. I’ll be around as time allows to check out your coffee venue later today. Last week was a full bust, but I’m back home now and for the foreseeable future so will do much better at getting back to enjoy your posts.