IMG_5688The blowing, sideways rains of November have returned this October. When I got out of the hot tub I smelled worse than when I got in, a combination of bromine and chlorine you’re not supposed to mix, the smell of stifled eggs. The frogs think it’s spring and sound like sockets ratcheting. The wind turned the trees to wooly mammoths with their trunks thrown up and undersides exposed, the whites of their eyes rolled back. There are mushrooms growing out of the sides of them the size of bistro tables, like album art from a Yes record, the early ’70s. Lightning struck one and split the base, the bark peeled back like skin, and I could swear it was a face in the tree, or maybe only I saw it.

I went back to work and waited in the lobby for an escort in. I worried the blazer was too much but was glad to see a couple others wearing the same when I arrived, Portuguese, on their tablets.

The best part, and I didn’t expect this, was walking into the new work area as a contractor, not a full-time employee, but how familiar it felt, how nice everyone seemed, they needed my help. There was a guy from Germany and a woman from France and I was able to say I’ve lived in both of your countries, and that was a good place to start.

I took Friday off for Dawn’s birthday but spent a couple hours on Saturday on a slide. It didn’t seem like I was working on the weekend, there are no weekends. My last two years have felt like one long weekend and there is no end without a week, they all run together.

I bought a desk from IKEA that cranks up so you can stand or sit, and put it in a corner by the windows in our bedroom. The bedroom desk is the work desk and the sofa in the den is where I write for fun. I walked to the lake and sat on a rock and wrote a poem about the trees, how the limbs fanned the air and spun like some large beast. The water was like glass, slate gray, and the trees turned upside down. I called a guy about firewood and made arrangements to meet him. I got cash for the gardener and a gift for Dawn’s birthday. I stayed up later than I should because in some ways, I didn’t want it to end.


Categories: musings, writing

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21 replies

  1. Sounds like a perfect day. Your descriptions of the trees and lake are exquisite.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey thanks Michelle! We live about 10 minutes from a small lake and the first few years here I think I only made it over a few times, and then to a playground with my kids or to swim in the summer. I go there now about every day as a touchstone to get some phrases and inspiration to write, and it never disappoints, even when I don’t come back with anything. I was surprised and happy how good it felt to go back to work, through a combination of going in to a place they wanted me to be and working from home too, I’m really excited about it. Thanks for reading, enjoy the day. Bill

      Liked by 3 people

  2. Hi Bill, so glad the transition back to work is so positive. Is it the same sort of work you were doing before? Fantastic you’re so happy about it. And your descriptions of the woodland, the bark peeling on the trees – fantastic. Lovely writing


    • Thank you Lynn, and for asking about the new job! It is a combination of writing and project management, which is rare to find a need for that I think. It’s a team of marketers at Microsoft who work with companies around the world responsible for selling Microsoft products and services. I think there’s only a few of us Americans and the rest are from other countries, so that’s really appealing to me. They’re all smiles and smart and they’re really busy so they need my help to organize some of their deliverables, edit and write content they send externally. So, that’s it — I’m looking forward to it — and thanks for the kind words about that peeling bark, that’s the sort of darkness we have in common I think, ha! Bill

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh god, those Yes album covers … Close to the edge, indeed!

    Hey, break a leg on the new assignment. Sounds like a great gig.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh yes, there’s a face. I enjoyed your description of wind blown trees as wooly mammoths…hope I think of that next time it happens. Congratulations on the job and good call on the blazer.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. i’m happy you were happy and when i first saw the word ‘slide’, i thought you were referring to the playground )


  6. Congrats on the new gig, especially so that you feel good about it. Sounds like a perfect balance!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Cali thank you. I’ll always remember the encouraging words you had for me when we met too — thanks for that and for reading, and the warm note. I appreciate it, hope things are well with you and yours too. Bill


  7. Revisiting your blog after some time away. Your words remind me to listen out for the extraordinary details in everyday life. Great first paragraph – reads like you had fun writing it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • We all need time away! Thanks for revisiting Caroline and for the comment and yes, it’s about having fun — glad you picked up on that. That’s where it’s at. Enjoy the day and your week my friend. Bill

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m excited for you. It’s like back to school with a new pair of pants.

    Liked by 1 person

    • And a new cut, thanks Ross. Loving your book, started last night with that little essay on how a newspaper is made by that Beech girl, so sweet. Those people on advertising, and all that coffee, all that bad language and disdain for semi-colons, sounds like my operation here.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Sounds like summer is officially dead…there’s some sadness to that, but autumn has it’s music too (stealing from Keats is one of my things). I knew summer ended when I got a call from my neighbor about my trees dropping leaves on his property…and then this morning I was working on a chunk of my novel about fall and then I come here and see that the world has decided that it’s time to prepare for winter. Nice. Love the frogs and socket noise.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good for you working on your novel, go back in the pit man! Sorry though about the neighbor calling re: the leaves. I think you told me about that neighbor, that doesn’t sound neighborly or nice. Leaves tend to do that this time of year. I shouldn’t take for granted the fact we don’t have neighbors calling. Sorry about all the negatives in that construction, Mr. Eekhoff.


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