As the Dust Settles…

Coming up for air as things settle into transient equilibrium in my inconsequential corner of the universe… Sharing a few observations, lessons, and a glimpse of ‘scores and highlights’ from the past few weeks… Not writing. Just reporting.

Wedding: My sister T’s wedding earlier this month went off with only one hitch – and that ‘hitch’ was to her partner! i was anxious regarding the coalescence of family around an emotionally charged event. Whether they all buried their respective shit out of respect for my sister, or because of my pointed directive prior to travel simply doesn’t matter – all went well, and it was a celebration!

My anxiety was driven by a series of messages and e-mails the week prior to the wedding. My brother couldn’t understand why my niece was invited, and he couldn’t stand being in the same room with her. My niece, and sister S, were both barking because my brother would be there. In a group e-mail to the clan sharing logistics and plans for the weekend, i added the following line: “There will be no drama.  i will drown the first person to be rude.” Regardless of the reason, everyone was cordial and nobody got drunk and stupid… Well, i might have had a few too many once i got on a plane toward home…

And then there was the suggested dress for the wedding – “Nautical Chic”… Us ‘Trailer Park People’ had to request clarification on this one. In southern Ohio, “Nautical Chic” means “Dress for a day of boatin’ on the Ohio River”, and would lead us toward cut off blue jeans and flip flops. i suggested Khaki trousers, polo shirt, or if going more “yacht club”, wearing the khaki’s with a light blue oxford and a blue blazer. Boat shoes for the gents, of course. My sister S’s husband J won the prize by asking if his old pair of disco shoes would be ok…

disco shoes

Kitchen Remodel: Today is the ninth day with skilled laborers in my home. Tear out began on 27 April, and there has been a tremendous amount of work done – making my new space look like a real kitchen again. A dream kitchen, in fact. Fortunately, my boss and the nature of my work has allowed me to work from home while construction is underway.

i sit in my home office, dog at my feet, bashing through e-mail, documents, presentations and conference calls. They tear out walls, install wiring, plumb gas lines, place flooring and trim, make all things perfectly flush and level, and haul a 10′ 6″ long slab of manufactured quartz that weighs 830 pounds into place on top of the new kitchen island.

In awe of their knowledge and skill, I’ve tried to stay out of the way – but have bootlegged the chance to learn something. What have i learned? We need to send fewer people to universities and instead develop more skilled tradesmen. They don’t need to leave at lunch to go to the gym to get exercise – they use their lunch breaks to rest.

Working with my designer, and lead contractor, i’ve also had to do some juggling and dancing to keep the project on track as various components were damaged or delayed. This morning? Flooring contractors were finishing up as the plumbers arrived. They were mostly finished by the time the refrigerator was delivered and installed. i really need to have the kitchen operational soon, because…

Adventure: There is a cruise in my immediate future. Not the type of holiday we usually take, this one is special for two reasons. The first? A former boss organizes an annual family and friends cruise to celebrate remission from brain cancer. Seven years ago he was given a 20% chance of getting on the other side of an aggressive tumor.  He did it.

The second reason? A friend, who has attached to us because she wants to be more adventurous, invited us along – with a request: “Please come on this cruise – I want to go diving with you guys in the Mediterranean!”  So we plan to be diving ruins in Naples along with a few other adventures – a bit more aggressive than typical shore excursions.

Studley had to carry the football on this trip because i handled travel logistics for the wedding, and am working logistics on a late summer trip to see The Girl in Turkey. So much to look forward to… but i am a bit overwhelmed.

This arrived today – i have a luggage fetish and am smitten with Samsonite Fiero. A new mid-sized piece for the collection. Time to get the kitchen re-organized and start loading this baby…

packing

Life is short. Don’t postpone joy…

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16 thoughts on “As the Dust Settles…

  1. Glad you are enjoying your adventures. And the kitchen looks spiffy. Just keep on trucking, you’re right, life is short and your circumstances can change unexpectedly. Do what you can, while you can, and hope you are still going strong at 100.

    • i’m working on dislodging the guilt – i have a good life, but know that i’m one phone call away from daytime nightmares. Running as hard as i can while it lasts…

  2. Thanks for the update.
    Love that the only hitch at the weddding was the right one.
    Kitchen remodelling? Reminiscent shudder. And awe at the skill of the tradies.
    Have fun on the cruise. A redundant expression because you will find it and/or make it. It is who you are.

    • The wedding really was beautiful – i plan to write a more detailed tale, but have limited time. There are several long flights ahead this summer, and it is my hope to get some 80% drafts completed while flying over the next few months… We will have a glorious time, even though we sort of backed into this particular holiday, it will be fun!

    • By leaving me with all of the cash, Mom put me in a position to hold their attention… at least my brother. i don’t think the rest of the crew really cares all that much… i prefer to think they all did it out of respect, not fear, but there were no more snarky e-mail messages after i sent that one…

      God, the Fiero was such a hot mess of a car! Please tell me you didn’t own one? i got the mid-size piece this time – i already have the roll aboard size, and it is delicious and sleek and maneuvers like a Formula 1 race car!

    • Those are authentic 1977 Disco Shoes! i suggested he put them up for sale on eBay, but he is apparently quite fond of them, even though he found a pair of more sensible loafers for the wedding!

      J is a retired fireman – and even though he’s in his mid-60’s, he still has biceps as big as my head. He WAS the bouncer!

  3. Sounds as though you need a candle with four ends. In your race to do all (and I don’t think I need to tell YOU this) don’t forget to enjoy all! Love the comment regarding the trades – you are so f …..g right. The talking TV heads, politicians, school hucksters all scream about the necessity of the gran toure de colleeeege. Even sitcoms down-grade the “hand-workin’-man.” How many CEO’s can work for GM? There’s a lot more to plumbing than knowing shit flows down hill.

    • Hmmm… at least four. i am enjoying it – as i’ve been saying lately – i am drowning in first world problems…

      i know someone who went into massive debt to get an associates degree in fine arts. how could this be a good idea? i encourage my friends in the arts to major in what they love, and minor in business – that way, they can pursue their passion, but manage retail. you can pay the rent a little easier if you’re managing a store, rather than working at the counter…

      One friend reminded me – It’s those college people who are hiring the tradesmen to do the kitchen remodeling jobs. Sure. Some truth in that. But everyone needs a plumber, and electrician, an auto mechanic…. We will have a shortage in the skilled trades soon.

  4. i’ve been keeping tabs on you via that other social media site, but this is so much better because of the comments! i think my daughter is channeling you in the way she’s dealing with her brothers! LOL they toe the line because she gently reminds them where it is! you’re a good woman, sister, and i am looking forward to raising a glass with you! xoxoxoxox

    • i’ll keep up with the blog – although it’s tougher these days. That other social media site is far more convenient on the road. i’m TERRIBLY behind in my blog reading, too…

      With the planning for another cousins reunion underway, i’ve learned that our side of the clan isn’t the only source of drama. This year we’re hoping to avoid the venomous snakes and maintain civility in some of the other parts of the family. Turns out, we didn’t have the market cornered on my mother’s side of the family!

      i’ve got a good friend sending her daughter off to SCAD this summer. We’ve talked about a roadtrip once she’s settled in… Perhaps we’ll get to raise that glass sooner, rather than later! 🙂

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