Most people do spring cleaning and make new year's resolutions. I do new year's cleaning and resolve in the spring that I will plant more flowers. To each their own. Which probably explains my vacation this week.
My announcement that I'd going on vacation was met with one question by all my senior citizens, "Where are you going?" With a sly smile I answered, "Away from my desk." Everyone needs a break from being the one in charge, as well as the one doing all the work. Just to not have to be anywhere at a certain time is a gift for the always-punctual like myself. They just shook their heads in dismay. I added that since it was going to be my birthday, I was giving myself the gift of a week off. Actually, I was giving myself the opportunity to do what I wanted in a time frame of my choosing.
Some will say I've wasted my week, others will wonder what part of "relax" I forgot to put into play. To begin with, between various family members, I managed to stretch my birthday out for three days. Not bad. On my birthday, hubby took me out for Lunch and Dinner of my choosing. Let's just say my first choice was better than my second. The latter had the same result as drinking the water in a foreign country. And yes, it was a restaurant that Montezuma's family might've been familiar with, although I will be kind enough not to name names. I'm only grateful I wasn't that hungry, so I didn't eat much.
I got the oil changed in my car. This isn't an obvious highlight unless you're a female facing the dreaded task of seeing the gleam in a mechanic's eyes when he sees a purse come through the door. I chose the local mechanic this week. As I walked in to ask about an oil change, this mountain of a man comes around the corner, calls me by name and wraps me in a bear hug of joy. He use to work for a big dealership, but had just bought the place in my small hometown. He pointed out that the young man behind the counter, who he referred to as "the chunk off the old block" was the same kid I use to watch him bring to baseball practice behind my center. I was glad to see this man for two reasons: I know he's honest and he has a sense of humor. I swore I'd never again patronize the previous oil change business because they were always intent on selling me every service known to mankind while being...well, patronizing. The Mechanic grinned and asked, "Did they do the little demonstration where they put the clean fluids on one side of the tray and then a sample of your car's? Stupid, huh?" Finally, a man with a garage who was aware I have a brain and know how to operate it. When I came back later, his son greeted me with a solemn face and said, "Just so you'll know, I let all that dirty air out of your tires and replaced it with clean air."
You gotta love hometown friendly, with a sense of humor.
The rest of the week has been preparing for income taxes for hubby's business and the aunt in the nursing home. Consolidating records, weeding out stuff more than five years old and finding the bottom of what I call my office at home. I've printed pictures on my new printer...which was even more fun because I made copies of a photo of my maternal Grandfather that my Mom had never seen. After copying it for Mom and her sister in N.C., I made that same aunt copies of a Family Tree "video" I'd made of the maternal side of the family.
Tomorrow we'll paint our bedroom. Sounds boring but it was the only room in the house we didn't paint when we purchased our home 10 years ago. It was an odd shade of green, not very well applied and it's starting to look like an ancient chalkboard. So as the curtains got a bath, I sat down to eat lunch and watch a little t.v.. The writer's strike is very effective if you're a viewer and has increased our consumption of the Discovery, History, Sci-Fi and Bravo channels. Sadly, reality t.v. has taken over. I flipped around and discovered [a] that "reality t.v." bears little to no resemblance to real life and [b] people with too much money don't have a clue. I saw 45 year old actor Scott Baio flip out when he finally asked his girl friend of many years, [she appeared to be a "fill in" between romances with a variety of starlets] to marry him. When she whispered, "We're going to have a baby", he threw a temper tantrum, telling her he couldn't handle her feelings as he literally ran away. I didn't know a 45 year old man could act so childishly. I feel sorry for the baby. The one in diapers, not the one turned 46 and whimpering that he didn't know what he'd do if the baby was a girl. I'm guessing the first order of business would be to protect her from guys like her Dad the Jerk. Insert rolling eyes here.
I flipped once more and laughed so hard I had to turn the t.v. off. Some California pampered wife was bemoaning, on her husband's yacht during her lavish birthday party, that she was turning 40 and her life was over. She was old. She should see a plastic surgeon. And all her friends rushed forward to tell her she looked wonderful. Well yeah, if you like the hooker with money look, she was swell. Her angst melted slightly when her hubby gave her a diamond encrusted Rolex. Her friends oohed and ahhed. One pouted when she realized her friend's "old watch with just a diamond face" had also been a Rolex...because she wanted one and had never gotten one. All her friends had a Rolex, so she starts pointing at her husband to demand he get her one.
My hubby got me a watch for my birthday. It also ends in "ex" and tells time just fine, thanks. We were sitting in his limo, which looks surprisingly like a large truck, when he presented it to me in the company of our two 4 legged children, Smokey and Boudreaux. In fact, Bou leaned forward and sniffed my gift, then wagged his tail. I think he realizes that poor 2 legged critters have to consult their wrist to know when it's time to eat or do other things. He licked my cheek in consolation. Smokey simply sat still and looked sage.
My reality is that my car will be safe for my daily commute, my house is somewhat more organized, the bedroom will be a cheerful color tomorrow in direct contrast to the rain muck outside and I think another birthday simply makes me happy to have made it through another year.
Besides, not being a slave to fashion, I was actually allowed to eat birthday cake. And enjoy it.