Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Grind

Work 10-12 hours a day
Home 8-12 hours a day
ETC - the remaining time

This is life on a weekday.

Classes 4 hours a day (drive time included)
Random Party 4 hours
Home improvement 4 hours
Sleep 8 hours
Random things - the remaining time

This is life on a weekend.

My life seems to be on a schedule. On Friday evenings I am excited to go home but before I get home I am tired from the past week. I make plans with G to drink, watch a movie, and veg out and the only thing I accomplish is vegging out on the sofa watching a TV program that was recorded two weeks ago. Of course we never get to finish the program because the two of us are stretching it out on our respective sofas. At approximately 2am I realize that I have a strained neck and wake up feeling that I am in a strange place and slowly migrate to the bed. And the weekend begins.

God forbid I make plans to hang out with friends, I am out of the zone. I am constantly thinking of how to juggle Sanjana's weekend classes with the various other commitments and how to do something at home and something for work. Nothing goes per plan and I am running helter skelter like a moron who lost his hat while it is still on her head.

The vacation was a good break. It removed me from the routine and put me onto a different grind. One that I definitely think has better prospects than my life. I sit down with a cup of coffee and remember our Romanian friends coffee in Paris. I wear a pair of pants and I think about walking in it through the streets of Barcelona. Pair of slippers remind me of what a pain they were in Pisa and my sun glasses remind me of how they were both glasses as well as hair band through the trip. We made memories and I believe that is how you measure the success of your vacation. You have a longing to go back, you are back in the present but the past is still keeping you engaged.

Do not mistake me as I am not complaining. I like the routine, I like things to go per plan. I make plans and I try real hard to stick by them. For a person like me, the Grind is security. Once in a while a bump in that grind is what makes my life interesting!

Tired ART

Monday, July 07, 2014

To leave and to be back...

The moment you drive up the house you were so eager to leave on a vacation a mixed feeling of excitement as well as dread sets in. In the two weeks we were gone, the grass in the lawn was now a field with swaying blades of grass welcoming you. Weed has overtaken one of your favorite knockout rose bush. "I am not doing lawn work today," I declare as I step out, "just too tired to handle this." Husband agrees but looks at the work in front of us. We go to the backyard to inspect our pool and things are still looking good but there is weed everywhere. The okra plant is now a rogue plant looking to compete with trees overpowering the basil  next to it. I walk back in closing the door saying, "Nope, not going back out till everything is clean." Husband comes back and tells me, "something is surely dead in the weed." Yuck!!!

That is what you get for leaving home and going to far away fantasy lands for two plus weeks. The walks, the sights, the relaxation, and the multiple coffees that you enjoyed while neglecting your house...well the house wants it revenge back. I have been walking around slowly into every room to make sure that the solitary roach has not invaded it yet. So far so good but I am always stuck with one rogue roach that manages to make my home its home in my absence.

The first few days away from home was filled with me moaning for sleep. I missed my bed, my shower, my home and my potty. We were driving through the roads of France and Spain, peeing in seatless toilets and eating food that could have easily spent a few more minutes in the oven. I was craning my neck to get a shut eye while also ensuring my husband or his brother did not take a nap on the steering wheel. I was cranky when we reached Barcelona.

From there on, every road we took was an adventure. Of course after a full night of sleep everything smells good and a smile is plastered on your face. Yes, the roads that took us through our vacation was filled with filthy toilets and basic food (sorry EU, you need to up your game on travel amenities along the road), but the views were one of a kind, the people were great and if all else sucked, the coffee still rocked. I am more of a tea person but the espresso and the style of serving it made me an instant convert. You cannot do that style with making tea.

This was one of the few vacations where I relaxed without worrying about coming back to work and mundane life. I relaxed at a coffee shop sipping on my new found love, noisette, and chatting up with our favorite Romanian barista who served coffee with such elan that I thanked my stars for being in that place at that time. Yes, this trip got me obsessed with coffee that my sister-in-law and I would sneak out in the pretense of shopping to get a sip of coffee. We would giggle like little girls while adding the 4th pack of sugar that most coffee shops thought was weird. We tried every coffees shop on the street and always landed at our favorite place.

All that high from coffee to looking at my lawn made me groan. This is it, the reality of life. You cannot go away thinking that everything will be at a standstill waiting for you to come back. Life growed on in our yard while time stood still in our vacation. I did not care if it was a Monday or a Friday. Every night when we settled in the various hotel rooms, we slept dreamless sleep, toes curled from all the walking and snored away to peace as the tired of the day behind slowly slipped away.

In a few days time, our lives will return to the grid but the memories we made will remain forever fresh like the Italian Coffee in the small shop across from Garbatella station in Rome.

Missing you already Europa. May you stand stuck in time from past with everything modern assimilating beautifully in to your lifestyle. May the coffee never go down with the recession. And hopefully we will meet again for a nice chat over a cuppa.

Travelling ART