The Spartan Life: Now that we’ve been doing without all our worldly possessions since the 14th, I have begun to miss a few things:
–Roger the milk frother. Though I can nuke milk to the desired warmth for my tea-drinking, I prefer the touch of Roger. Also my veggie steamer and the strainer.
–Small tables and plant stands to put things on. Having everything sitting on the floor does get old.
–Oddly, more of all the things we actually have: I look forward to again having more than 2-3 forks, plates, dresses, and pairs of undies.
Yoga with Live Music: Yesterday Kelly and I headed off to Downward Dog to try their 1/2 class. We had the idea that this class was pronounced “One Half” and was the halfway point between the (wonderful, awesome!) Beginner/prep classes we’ve been taking and Level One. Rumor has it that L1 is super-hard!
It turns out that 1/2 means “One Two”–it’s the halfway point between Level One and Two! From this I reached three epiphanies in rapid succession: OMG, OMG, I’m gonna die, followed by Holy Shit I survived that, man I am a Yoga Stud and, finally–after I looked up the class definitions and realized we were in something that might have been termed 1.5, Odds are good I could probably do actual Level One once a week.
Grief Makes You Dumb: A lot of my mental bandwidth is taken up with Grandma-related thoughts. Much of what’s left is getting antsy over the fact that I haven’t written any fiction since the 15th. The latter situation will get addressed tomorrow. So if you ask me for something in the near and get a less than useful response, like “Noodles!” just dumb down the question and try again.
F. Scott Fitzgerald makes you dumb too: The Great Gatsby was a very pretty disappointment. Everyone seemed emotionally flat except Tom Buchanan, and there’s no way to get behind him. Also, Toby Maguire may win the Me Award for simperiest narrator ever.
In the midst of chaos: Life goes on, except when it doesn’t. Auntie Emm wrote last night to say that my grandmother has had it with petering out slowly and painfully, and has stopped taking food and medicine. I think this is an amazing and right decision on Joan’s part–not that it’s for me to say. But, for myself and for K, ouch.
Long and short of it: I feel much grief already, of course, and expect to be winging it to Saint Albert in a state of woe in the not too distant.
Edited to add the thing I told Ana: One of the dumb move things that is making it harder is that our stuff was, originally, supposed to have arrived last week. If Great Canadian Van Lines had delivered as promised, I would at least have a black dress and the freedom to jet off to Alberta any time I wished. As it is, the stuff hasn’t arrived and Kelly is having a ferociously hellish time getting the mover and the building move-in coordinator on the same page.
She must, at this point, have made twenty phone calls or more trying to get the driver to commit to a time when the elevator’s free. We need to know when the stuff will come so we can know when I might hypothetically go.
Casualties of move: Rumble is very pleased to announce he has finally managed to bust one of our possessions. And as a bonus, it’s a mouse! He knocked it off the desk this morning and now it does not right click.
Speaking of cats, here’s one of the neighbors:
A bit of random in this post: The new yoga studio looks like it’s going to work out. We’ve only gone twice, and we miss the little bits of meditate-y spiritual guidance we used to get at Open Door (we miss many things about Open Door) but the two classes at Downward Dog were the right mix of do-able and challenging. It’s not hot yoga, but the small studio there has some ventilation challenges. This is nice for me, as I like a warm room. It’s maybe less nice for K.
Speaking of nice, here are some baby robins I shot yesterday. It was a crummy day, in a way, with bad sandwiches and lots of jerking around from hither to yon, but I wandered into a community garden and scored bigtime.
Toronto has wind! I am realizing that what passed in B.C. for wind was, you know, not.
Finally, we now have something to sleep on. The Sleep Country guys delivered our bed (the second one, the one we didn’t have to demand a refund on) yesterday, after Kelly paid them a $100 bribe to not drive off when they saw they’d have to wait their turn for the building loading dock.
In addition to lying OMG on a real mattress last night, we slept with artificial rain noise. Our bedroom is right near the stairwell, and what with both elevators being down it means every single person in the building has to tramp past us to get to their home. The building is largely unoccupied, but we needed some white noise. Snuffy recommended a program called Sleepmaker and we set it to play a heavy rainstorm with frequent swells of thunder all the night through.
My Novel II class is going well–I have about nine students now, and they’ve all got pretty intriguing books on the go. They’re disciplined, hardworking, and ask a lot of questions–a dream come true while I bounce through this transition.
Awesome: One of the friends who has been taking such excellent care of us is the brilliant and thoroughly wonderful Linda Carson (whose Ignite Waterloo talk Art… WTF? is five minutes you’ll never regret.)
Here’s a shot of Linda and Kelly at the Art Gallery of Ontario on our first (failed) attempt to go there and partake of the wonder. Failed, because AGO is closed on Mondays.
Problematic: There’s an elevator repairhuman strike ongoing in Ontario. In order to keep our building’s elevators in service, the management company has been running them like old timey elevators, with security guys parked inside to keep the rogue tenants from abusing the hardware. For a week we’ve had to get them summoned, via radio, to come to the ground floor and convey us up to two. But now both elevators are out of service anyway, so I expect they’ll open up a stairwell and allow us to rampage up and down.
Makes you wonder how often elevators do in fact break down, doesn’t it?
The happy bit for us is that we are on the second floor right next to the stairwell. The climbing is negligible and it shouldn’t even be that sucky for our bed delivery guys, Saint Someone Please Let them Come Today, to haul our mattress and boxspring up to the new, cavernous, furniture-free Chez Dua.
The less happy bit is that everyone else will be tramping by too, pretty much along the wall to our bedroom. Said tramping woke Kelly at three last night. We will be looking into a white noise app, I think, to replace the comforting drone of traffic that lulled us to sleep on First Avenue.
The Ugly: It’s not actually all that ugly, but our moving truck hasn’t actually left B.C. yet. Delivery will be a week later than projected by Great Canadian Van Lines, and we shall be camping amid the emptiness for at least another week. I am beginning to question whether we needed to bring anything at all. Surely if I’ve done without all that stuff for this long, it’s not necessary to my health and well-being. What was in all those frogboxes anyway?
The Awesome: West King Street is so terrific. It’s like having all the awesome of Commercial Drive stretching endlessly in just about every direction, and then you slam into downtown.
The Problematic: So our building is under construction. Okay, noise and dust, who cares. But, actually, our suite’s not quite finished either! We had guys in today replastering the ceiling. During the one stretch of time when I actually had to be home to make important phone calls and send important e-mails, I did it closed up in the bathroom, with le Throne as my office chair and somebody’s sandbox as my desk.
The rest of the period of plaster-guy exile I spent, with K, at the Art Gallery of Ontario. About which, OMG. It deserves its own entry in the category of Awesome.
The Ugly: The bed that was supposed to be delivered on the 16th? Well, it just wasn’t. It looks as though the situation’s gonna be resolved as of tomorrow–so I won’t say much about it–and we have a temporary workaround to sleep on in the meantime. But we have suffered an epic, faith-in-humanity-shattering customer service fail.