Tea at Home


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My sister Bean and my brother (we shall call him Northwoods) demonstrate the kind of shenanigans that we get into when all the siblings are together.

Today was my last day visiting home. Tomorrow I leave at the crack of dawn to go home home. It was a day of mixed feelings: pleased to have the time to visit, sad to have to leave, happy to be getting back to the Curmudgeonly Lion, relaxed with no plans but busy with tasks of preparation and things left undone.

For the past few days I’d been reading a book called “Mayflower” (about, you know, the Mayflower) by Nathaniel Philbrick who also wrote “In The Heart of the Sea” which I read over Christmas. I was anxious to finish the book before I left. I was sure that my folks would let me borrow the book if I wanted to read it on the plane, but I was also sure that I would finish it before the flight was over and possibly before I even boarded the plane and I would be left carrying the book around with me as dead weight. I don’t really mind carrying a little extra weight when it comes to books, but the longer I was spending at home the more other books I wanted to borrow and I wanted to finish “Mayflower” to make room for these other books instead.

So I spent a portion of the day focusing on reading which was very pleasant.

For another portion of the day I had tea with my Mom and two older ladies who have become like surrogate grandmothers to the family. This wasn’t a formal tea, just a chance to eat cookies and chat, but it was fun to visit without any sense of trying to squeeze the visit to fit a schedule- a rarity in my life.

Making time is something that I need to do more of: making time for family, making time for the Curmudgeonly Lion, making time for myself, making time for society at large. I’m a busy person with school and projects and I like being that way, but I don’t want to fall into the trap of thinking that a full schedule means a fulfilled life. This visit has caused me to be especially mindful of this fact: by coming out with no plans I was free to just visit with whomever was available. Some of these people won’t be around forever (one of the ladies that came to tea today was in her late nineties) and would I really be happier if I spent my time making work for myself to keep busy rather than visiting with her?

Perhaps “Make More Time” should be one of my New Year’s resolutions, although I’ll need to think of some way to make it quantifiable if I’m going to have any hope of making it happen.

At any rate, tomorrow I fly back to California, weather permitting, and my holidays will be over but not forgotten. If the rest of the year manages to be as happy as the past ten days have been then I will be very lucky indeed.

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on January 2, 2015.

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