Walking

I like walking in the morning after a big snow.  The fluffy kind that eddies and swirls with each step.  When the silence is so profound it is a roar.  When all you can see is white. Frosted trees, curious mounds that used to be lawn furniture,  and the small tracks of some wild animal out foraging for breakfast.  When air sparkles silver and the shadows make interesting images on the white canvas of the snow.

I like walking at lunchtime with my close friend who is also my boss to the restaurant we have chosen for lunch.  I cannot often afford to do this any longer, but I miss those walks.  Idle chatter, not related to work, feet pounding cement,  me trying to keep up with a woman nine years my senior. 

I like walking in the late afternoon on an eastern beach in the slanted western sun.  I always start walking south so the waning sun is to my right creating long shadows on the sand.  I will stop and stoop to pick up a shell or a rock or a piece of driftwood now and again, but mostly I am just walking.  A moving meditation.

I like walking at twilight in the summer neighborhoods of suburbia when the good people of America are cooking out, mowing their grass, sipping cold sweet tea on their front porches watching the passersby.  The fireflies are starting to blink now and again.  And the hummingbirds flit around red feeders.

I like walking after midnight on empty city streets, Patsy Cline in my head singing.  The film noir of the downtown area is lit by street lamps and the flash of neon in the fog.  The stoplights change from red to green, green to yellow, yellow to red as if there is traffic in need of control.  Sometimes you can hear music or a television drifting from an apartment window or bar open late.  Sometimes all you hear are your footsteps.

I like walking in the small hours when the whole world is asleep.  The furtive fox and the nocturnal owl keep watch.  Everything in shadow, the moon lighting a path that needs careful negotiation.  This is the time when the temperature drops to its coldest and people snuggle deeper into blankets.  I wrap my coat tighter and enjoy the bracing wind on my face. 

I like walking at dawn in late spring.  The fullness of summer in the promise of the garden, the bird song as they wake and begin their orchestrations.  The sweet smell of dew and the cheerful red of late tulips.  The soft air is a slight mist that will later burn off in the fullness of the sun and provoke crystalline blue skies.  But today, now, wrapped in the mist that is the shawl of the mountains.  Wrapping us in love, in contentment, in abiding peace.

My intentions are good.

I like writing unless I have a formal project to work on and then I procrastinate it.  I do a lot of head-writing but don’t put it on paper.  Fear of failure?  Needing an adrenaline surge to produce?  Right now, I have hanging over my head, an article that I need to write from an interview of one of my all-time favorite people.

Photo by Martha Dominguez de Gouveia on Unsplash

I think this piece will get a reasonably large readership.  Everyone knows her and everyone loves her.  She’s more fun than a box of puppies. 

I like having an audience.  I do write to know what I think, but I also write to be read.  Of course, I have some pieces that will never see an editor’s pen, but others I want out there for anyone to read at will. 

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Yes. I’m sure my house is brown.

Towards the end of June, I called the Dish Tech Dept. to report my satellite television service was not working properly.  I told them that I couldn’t get more than half of my channels and asked if they knew why.  Indeed, they did.  Hurricane in Florida. Or maybe that time it was because it was raining.  One or the other.  I called again.  Hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico.  Or maybe rain. One time they asked me if it was cloudy.  I told them I live in Ohio Valley and that it’s often cloudy but that my satellite dish has always worked when it was cloudy before.  I also told them my neighbors had Direct TV and had no problems with clouds, rain, hurricanes in Florida, or yellow waxy buildup on their kitchen floor.  I called yet again.  I talked with a nice woman.  We did some diagnostics and re-booted the receiver.  I had a working satellite for about 2 hours. 

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

I’ve called every couple of days since June 29th.  Monday, I talked with a techie who knew what he was doing.  After about an hour on the phone with him, he concluded either my receiver had a bad connection point or something was wrong with the dish.  He scheduled me for a service call today after asking my preference for either 8 to noon or noon to 5.  I complained about the window.  He apologized, but…  I called customer service and complained.  I was told, essentially, “Fine, lady, how about noon to two?”  I agreed.  Someone called last night to confirm my appt. for noon to five.  I said, no, noon to two.  We went rounds.  I talked to supervisors, etc. etc.  Noon to two.

I arrived home at 11:55.  At 2:10, I called and was unceremoniously told my window was noon to 5, but the tech was running late.  I burst into flames.  (This will prove prophetic, later.)  No good.  I called Customer Service and ranted about a month of no service, general dicking around, and now this.  Eventually, I wrangled a $49.99 service call credit.  I made my beach packing list.  At 4:40 I called.  The tech was on his way.  I should call back in 20 minutes if he wasn’t there.  Yeah yeah yeah.  I decided to cook an early dinner.  The phone rang in the midst.  It was not the Dish Network, it was Putnam General Hospital who is perturbed at me because my ex-husband had not yet paid a lab bill.  I wished them well and hung up just as the frying pan burst into flames.

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