I took my time shaving, flossing, folding the laundry and putting away dishes. I took long, indulgent showers. In short, I slowed down. Stopped checking my phone. Went through things in the garage, reread old letters, threw out none. Sifted through old photos, threw out lots. Cut back the dead in the garden and sorted it, bagged it, tied it for removal. I’d been away from work so long, a good six or seven weeks, I didn’t even feel off, I just felt removed. I had to wait in line longer than expected at the pharmacy and didn’t get upset. Running errands I took the long way. I listened to the afternoon radio show. I cooked stews and deep cleaned the refrigerator, bought a fresh batch of candles, replaced worn pillow cases, started building a disaster recovery kit but stopped short. I read Cormac McCarthy’s Border Trilogy. I rotated the house plants in the windows and fed them ice. I restocked the liquor cabinet, pressure washed the patio, sent out RFQs for an arborist. I deleted low quality photos from my hard drive. I got my eyes checked. I blew leaves and made kindling with the last of the wood, took the hammock down. I mailed a book to my uncle. I learned the difference between mezcal and tequila. I sharpened knives. I stood outside in my socks under the eaves as it rained, admiring a rainbow. There was so much life to be had outside of work it was hard to believe I ever managed to do both. I savored my time and knew its scarcity and loved it hard.