We had expected, and I, to go to our friend Bruce’s for New Year’s Eve, stay only until midnight, and then go to her drum teacher’s house, stay the night, and then go to drumming on New Year’s Day. Only half of this plan worked out, or more accurately two-thirds.
I met at work, and we drove together in her 4WD Subaru to central MA, where we met her drum teacher (and best friend), and her husband. After a quick bite to eat, we headed on all four of us to Bruce’s. Bruce lives in an all-wood geodesic dome. It’s really cool. There’s a living room, dining area, and kitchen that fills most of the ground floor (one small corner seems to be a storage area), with a passageway into a separate structure which serves as the bathing area. There’s also a wood-fired hot tub about fourteen feet from the front door, which was surrounded by candles and snow sculptures the night we were there. There were ten or twelve couples there, and we wound up drumming until shortly after midnight. Then the four of us went back across central MA, and crashed into bed about 1:45-2:00 am.
Clio’s whining woke me about 7am, and I let her out to pee and play and eat. I got back from her walk about 8:30, to discover that had showered and everyone was having something for breakfast. I cooked a challah that I had mixed up at home the day before, and we had a bread that looked pretty ugly, but tasted delicious about 30 minutes later. It’s so much better when the bread rises overnight. Have to remember that for the future.
We got the cars loaded. The plan was for and I to travel to Boston with Opeyemi, a friend of ours, who would then drive home with Irene the drum teacher, another student, and Larry. With all the seriousness of a military logistics operation, we managed to get the two cars packed with drums, Clio, and all the relevant gear for people, drums and dog.
Then it started snowing. We left Florence, MA, at about 10:30 am. By 11:30 am we had made it to I-91, and managed to go all of two exits south. By 12 noon, we’d not quite reached the MassPike. At this point we saw two near-accidents, and resolved not to be the third. Also, we saw three hawks just sitting in trees, watching the parade of stupid humans traveling (or attempting to travel) during near-whiteout conditions. A flurry of calls followed — to the drumming organizer, to the folks in the other car, and to other persons — in order to create a plan B.
The second or third call went to our friend O. “Whatcha doin’, O?” Opeyemi asked. “Roasting a turkey,” came the grumpy reply. “Only there’s no stuffing, and no veggies, and I don’t know where my daughter is to eat it.” Speedily we offered to bring the turkey, and we called other folks. Within about an hour, we’d arranged a lovely New Year’s Day stone-soup type potluck, and O’s daughter wound up showing up just in time to eat a delicious turkey, potatoes, salad, sweet potatoes, monkey bread, cheese, chocolate truffles, and prosecco. We called quarters and ate. Over dinner, we shared our three wishes for the New Year — one for the world, one for our nation or community, and one for ourselves. The wishes were varied and wonderful, and I think we made a wonderful day for ourselves out of storm-tossed confusion.
Eventually, after the weather cleared up, and I headed home. It was not exactly an easy drive at the beginning, but by the time we reached Connecticut the worst of the weather had passed. There wasn’t any more snow on the ground here than when we’d left, and a rain had washed away at least some of the extra snow. There was a little bit of ice on my car where we’d parked it at ‘s workplace, but not much. After that, it was an easy drive home — where I basically suffered a mental shutdown.
From about 9:30 pm until we went to bed around 11:30pm, I was crashed on the couch, virtually non-communicative. kept telling me to go to bed, and I just couldn’t quite muster the energy to do so. Eventually, we did go to bed, but it took a huge mental burst from me to get up from the couch, get myself into pajamas, and climb into bed.
The students return to school today. Part of me is not ready for school to start up again. For one thing, I can say that it was a good vacation. I did a lot, and I got to see my folks, ‘s family, and my family, as well as my tribe and my community. But it involved a lot of late nights, a lot of driving, and a lot of mental focus to keep Clio on a reasonable schedule, and the humans happy. I don’t really want to do anything for a while now. On the other hand, Opeyemi had a 10-year predictive calendar, which said that the them for 2008 is Flexibility. Maybe now is a good time to take up yoga, and learn to go with the flow.