Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Hooky . . . Time Out!

What a good thing I had committed myself to finding Christmas in the moment, yesterday morning. As it turned out, not only our 8:30 ferry, but then also the 10:30 and the 12:30 were cancelled, due to "Adverse Weather Conditions" -- high winds, in other words. Meanwhile, outside our condo windows, a different kind of Adverse was hefting its wet way to the pavement. I'm not sure I've ever encountered snow quite so wet, but it was, nevertheless, thick enough to stick, mucking up traffic enough that we decided not even to try for the 3 ferry, surely full with all those poor souls who'd been waiting at Horseshoe Bay since morning, nor even for the 5 p.m. which would have got us fireside on our little island by sometime around 8.

Instead, we went for a long, wet, cold walk that was nonetheless enjoyable for the drama and the fun of being among the very few walkers out and about in the city. We ended at the wonderful Patisserie Lebeau where we enjoyed delicious Belgian waffles with very welcome strong hot coffee. We browsed at Mint Interiors, imagining ourselves furnishing a very different, very hip loft-style condo, but then ordered three new pendant lights for our island home.

And then we settled into reading our respective mystery novels in the quiet condo. Paul eventually went out to pick up Indian takeout for lunch, and there were tentative plans to head out for dinner, maybe a movie, maybe even dinner and a movie.  But the sense of playing hooky, just the two of us, was so delicious that we ended up managing with a mixed-up evening meal of various leftovers and staying in. I finished one sock and began another, took a short nap, watched a few episodes of Damages on Netflix. Paul channel-surfed, put together the mixed-up meal (beet salad, roasted brussel sprouts, a couple of sausages fried in the pan with onions and a few pyrogies) and then read. We had the coloured mini-lights on to enhance the quiet festivity, but otherwise our contentment glowed brightly enough all on its own. . . .

Then this morning, we were up early, breakfasted on the 8:30 ferry, and were home stoking up the woodstove by 11. A friend knocked on the door shortly after with a very generous Christmas gift, and we waited almost 'til noon before deeming it a respectable time to open a bottle of red and toast our friendship in the warmth of the season.

We have to turn out and reverse our steps on Saturday morning, heading back to Vancouver (our son and daughter-in-law will be coming from Victoria so the whole family can do an early Christmas before the Victoria branch heads back to the island). This coming and going may be evolving into the new tradition for us -- much as we used to like being the fixed centre that the kids and grandkids came back to, we now seem to have the most flexibility and/or resources to do the travel. It gets a bit tiring, truth be told, but we're pleased that being together is still really important to all our gang, so what's a little fatigue? -- All the more reason to grab the gift of a slow-down when it's handed to us, gift-wrapped in Adverse Weather Conditions. . .
And having made it back home, even if only for two days, I'm making the most of the fire, the armchairs, and the outdoors -- above are photos of the seasonal greenery arrangements I made up from findings in the garden. Simple joys. . . .

17 comments:

  1. Being stuck somewhere can be a gift from the universe. You had your knitting and your book and it sounds like you had a wonderful time! Isn't it really all about the attitude? Better to embrace it than fret.

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    1. Exactly! It helped that we had nothing that really had to be done, and we had a cozy place to ourselves.

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  2. An enforced slowdown is something to relish, if in the mood. Well done for making a go of it.

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    1. I could do with a few more days like that, although I'd rather have them in our island home with all my books and knitting stuff. . .

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  3. Hooray! Hooray! I feel the old Mater voice coming back, the one that's gotten some down time:).

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  4. If there's anything I value more than a cancellation, it's being stuck (incommunicado is best!)somewhere with my best guy and a good book.
    One of these days I'll have to post about my love of cancellations, but in the meantime I'll enjoy your delight in your enforced pause.

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  5. No snow here. Those Belgian waffles and hot coffee sound so good. Sounds like you had a wonderful "time out".

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    1. Our snow was quickly washed away as well, Marla, but it gave us a good push to quiet. . .

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  6. Hi Mater, I'm glad you enjoyed playing hooky! I must say that reading your blog over the years, I've become more aware of the different stages of married and family life. What you said about once being the centre of it all, now being the ones to move around - that really resonates. It's nice to think of these interesting stages lying ahead, whilst still enjoying being the centre - for a little while longer anyway! If you don't post before the big day, let me now wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas!

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    1. It's so interesting, Patricia, becoming aware of the "ages and stages." We're watching my in-laws deal with some unhappy stuff right now and all of us trying to figure out points along the way that might have been opportunities to better adjust -- although I'm sure we'll just make different mistakes.

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  7. This is why I miss school snow days. I had the best time stuck in the house reading for hours and hours.

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    1. Snow days are the best! (except when they shut down something fabulous you've been anticipating for weeks, as once happened to us . . . )

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  8. Your adverse weather turned out to be a gift of a day and you spent it well by the sounds of it.
    Happy Holidays Mater!

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  9. I loved this post. So evocative as I sit here, looking at our 8 inches of snow, drinking coffee out of a new cup, daughter back on her way to her city, son sleeping above dreaming of a wild NYE at his college apartment and my sweetie quietly watching some news program.

    Happy Holidays,

    MuttiStacy

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  10. And you paint an enticing picture yourself, Stacy . . . we don't have snow here to enforce a home day, but our house guests (daughter, SIL, g-daughter) leave today, and some lazy lounging will ensue . . . Happy Holidays to you as well

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I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we? I apologize, though, for the temporary necessity of the Word Verification -- spam comments have been tiresomely numerous lately, and I'm hoping to break that pattern.

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