The winter solstice has slipped into memory. I celebrated the first day of longevity in San Francisco, spending money with abandon. I bought the best banjo that I could find to give my son for Christmas; I can say that because he arrived last evening and the cat has already sprung from the bag. I think he liked it though now we have to ship it to Evanston.
I nearly hit a divider trying to make a U-turn looking for parking but we got safely to a restaurant and waited out rush hour. I broke my vegetarian diet with a fish fry at the Old Clam House. I enjoyed it but I don’t think I’ll do it again. Now I am confronting the problems again: The shower with no hot water, the washer installed in a cabinet without being connected, my joblessness, the porch that won’t build itself. This and that. Chickenfat. I knew a lawyer once who used that expression: This, that, and chickenfat. I’m not sure what it meant but it seems fitting now.
The virtual voice mail of my office number says that I have thirteen messages but I can’t find any of them. I suppose that I’ve got some setting wrong. I’ll have to spend a few hours working today, hard to do without a printer but I’ll manage. I’ll borrow an Allen wrench set and figure out how to adjust the hot water. We’ll make breakfast and go tour the Delta. It all seems do-able, possible. I keep hearing Broadway tunes in my head — the soundtrack of my childhood, Mom in the kitchen and the little boys and I dancing in the living room. Anthony Newley’s resonance melting into Gilbert and Sullivan’s relentless cheer.
A few annoyances could claim my own contentedness, but I’ll push back. My son likes Angel’s Haven. That counts for a lot. I’ll ignore the unsettling dream that I had last night, and the misgivings that arise with any major change. Geese flew over my house at sunrise. I couldn’t hear them, but I watched their easy glide. They know their place. South in December; north when the weather begins to warm. I envy their conviction. I aim to model the languid sweep of their eternal effortless dance in the winter sky.
It’s the twenty-second day of the forty-eighth month of My Year Without Complaining. Life continues.