Saturday, October 18, 2003

Saturday Morning Roundup

Thing 1) The weather holds beautiful in a way completely special to Florida. It's like a magic wand waved over the land -- well, a magic cold front mellowed to perfection by the southward sliding semi-tropical sun. The sky is darkening, the heat (and it's associate, humidity) recede from memory, and it's possible to open all the windows in the house and turn off the air conditioner. The real reason that air conditioners run for so much of the year in Florida is not completely that Floridians are wimps and can't deal with heat. It is there's so much moisture in the air that, if you let it into the kind of closed off, dark spaces houses create, you get incredible amounts of mildew and mold.

From the air.

Let that thought sink in a minute.

Let me add to the picture. Fast growing, highly destructive, stinking, staining mildew living on the clean clothes you put in the closet four days ago.

Air conditioners, in cooling the air, also condense the moisture out of it. There's a pipe running from the unit to the outside of the house to drain off the copious amounts of water. Once a year we have to clean it, or the water will back up and flood the garage. Betcha didn't know that.

Thing 2) I've been trying to write about our trip to England and meeting Rien . I kept a journal while I was there, which I thought would help. Yet, everything I write sounds so maudlin that it drains all the wonder and happiness right out of the trip. I couldn't figure out why it was so hard to write about, but I should have known. It's not the writing, it's the expected tone. In a weblog or online journal, people write about anger, depression, alienation, loneliness, sadness, indignation, bogglement, inconvenience and malaise. Happiness, contentment and good stuff make for boring writing (or a plethora of rainbows, cliche cute kitty pictures, and little sunfaces). No one believes you, and those who do get bored with the tedious repetition of your good fortune pretty quick.

So, I've whittled down everything I wanted to say about a really good trip where very little bad, inconvenient or uncomfortable happened.

-- All of England is either upstairs or downstairs.
-- So are large portions of the Netherlands.
-- Rien is one of those online people who is just like that when you meet him. If everyone I met online were as authentically themselves as he is himself, I'd want to meet them all, if just to bring them cookies.
-- I got blisters from walking, and was upset only about the fact that they kept me from walking as fast as I wanted.
-- It's an amazing thing to have all your history living with you in the present, and we have very little of that in the US, which I think is a huge underlying part of the US personality.
-- I hate airplane turbulence, ok? Hate it hate it hate it.
-- Virgin Atlantic feeds you identifiable and tasty food,like, every 10 minutes, sometimes even when there's turbulence.
-- If I could have any vacation I wanted, expenses not considered, I'd invite 4 friends to go with me and the Husband on a 2 week theatre/museum tour of London. We'd see a minimum of 6 shows, and I'd go through the British museum completely before moving on to all the other ones I *didn't* get to see.
-- I'd do the same thing in the Netherlands, reducing the number of shows and increasing the number of flower markets. (The redlight district can offer nothing to my happiness except any number of things to laugh about).
-- I want to go to Germany one day. And Ireland. And Northern England. And Canada. And Australia and New Zealand. Maybe Japan. It would be even better to visit someone someone I know online who lives in each of those places, so I could 1) get around some of the tourist stuff 2) learn a little of what it's like to live, breathe and think in another part of the world.

Thing 3) I have the best husband I can imagine. I need to mention that because I do rag on him frequently here, and I'm often a less than wonderful person, but he still hangs around. I'm lucky.

Thing 4) My mother in law is arriving in 3 days for a short, unscheduled stay. Oh lawsy lawsy. At least it's short. Not like when she shows up in December. When she's shows up in December, it is like a two month dental visit -- deep cleaning, two fillings.

Thing 5) It's so beautiful outside, but the perfect place is here in my library with all the windows open and the morning sun shining in on me, my cats, and everything else. I'm feeling so Pollianna-ish that someone is going to have to kick me.

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