I started a new job last Monday and it’s going to be a lot more intense than my last job. Interesting, but intense. Starting new things is hard on me and it takes me a lot longer than most people to get into my comfort zone. New people, procedures, culture, and work take a lot out of me, and on Monday evening I found myself going to bed at 7:00pm. And I slept through until 6:00am. The rest of the week found me exhausted too, waking up in the wee hours of the morning with my mind whirling. Sometimes I would catch a few more winks, but often that was it for the day.
With a busy first week, I would normally try to keep my evenings quiet, but I had two events that were must-attends. The first was on Wednesday when I went to the book launch for Peggy Blair’s second novel The Poisoned Pawn. I first heard of Peggy when I listened to her read from her first novel The Beggar’s Opera at (the now sadly closed) Collected Works bookstore – one of the last few indie bookstores in Ottawa. I bought her book after her reading and I completely enjoyed it. I’m looking forward to reading the second in the series which got a favourable review in the Globe and Mail. How fabulous to see a local author doing well. It’s very inspiring.
The second event was also a must-attend because it was at my house. I was hosting my book club, with my book choice being Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie. This book has been on my ‘to read’ list for years but somehow never made it to the top of my reading pile, and choosing it made me finally read it. It’s a long one, astoundingly written, and with sentences that I could only ever dream of constructing. It was a heavy book but I did like it very much, and others in my group seemed to like it too.
Tradition for my book club is that the host prepares the main course and then everyone else brings appetizers, salads and desserts. If you have been following along, you know that I’m not the cook in our house, and I may even be a little bit afraid of my kitchen. I had picked out the curry recipe in this blog post and had all the ingredients on hand, and was strongly counting on guidance and advice from Tony in the preparation of the meal. His phone call at noon struck panic – he had been invited to the hockey game by an important client. Could he go?
Could I say no? I wanted to.
Of course I couldn’t.
So I was on my own and made this:
And it was good! Even though Paul M said it looked like it was glowing.
And eight-year-old Beatrice was a huge help in setting the table and getting other things ready for the evening. She was super helpful and without her I would have been scrambling to be ready in time. It’s a new stage when kids help you with something and it actually makes things easier rather than making the task take longer. It was a bit of a milestone and I was so grateful.
I really enjoyed the evening, even though no one brought dessert. Normally it just works out, with all the parts of the meal being supplied without too much prior planning. Last time I hosted there were no appetizers, so it seems I may need to organize a bit better in future. Since we’re trying to watch what eat around here, I had nothing at all sweet to serve. Wine glass fill-ups did the trick.
So after a crazy week, I was looking forward to some quiet time this weekend. But then – plague hit Tony on Friday and so I spent the weekend handling all the weekend activities too. Tony is not one to give in to the sick, so for him to concede to illness means he probably should be in the hospital. I’m only exaggerating slightly. If anyone gets a man cold around here it’s me.
Now I love that my daughters have a lot of interests and are well-rounded people, but I found myself dismayed at the sheer busy-ness of the weekend after a long week. Three basketball events, badminton, and a full day of downhill skiing for the girls has meant we have been on the run all weekend. In between that I was doing laundry and all the other chores that need to get done on the weekend.
But right now, I am sitting in the ski lodge and this is my view.
It took me a while to figure out which of the skiers were my kids because everyone has a blue jacket it would seem, but I knew they were flying down the hill and having a perfect day.
So I’m happy.