I slept until 8:15 this morning.
Actually I didn't sleep - I was awake around 7:30. I lazed around for 45 minutes. It was decadent and delicious.
Somehow I ended up not having to work on the last weekend before my retirement. Pretty fucking sweet.
Gotta work Monday but what the hell, I get paid for 18 hours - 8 at straight holiday pay, 10 at time and a half. America is a beautiful country.
Drank up some coffee and continued reading David Crosby's second autobiography. Got a call from an old friend (Steve) welcoming me to the ranks of the semi-retired (4 more days to go). We had a great chat.
Steve is a member of the Powerful Five.
I started out with the immoral liquor commission working as a part timer in a store in Concord with four other guys as the core to the store.
Me, Steve, Bob, Eric and Rich. Wayne was honorary #6.
What a crew. What a fucking crew.
We got the job done, we took care of business, and we laughed our asses off while we were doing it. Six insane people, six serious drinkers, responsible for the business operations of a state run liquor store.
What could go wrong?
Good friends all; friends for life.
Got off the phone and went out to cut the grass ( mow the lawn for you yard-care snobs). Worked up a powerful sweat - it was 90 degrees and humid but I am one tough son of a bitch and I got it done.
Showered, and then Carol and I exited the premises for a dump run and to go food shopping.
Sound like a boring day?
It is life, baby. It is life.
I am becoming increasingly more tuned in to the little moments that, cumulatively, make up an entire life.
John Lennon is credited with saying that : "Life is what happens to you when you are busy making other plans."
He was right.
For the last few years I have been trying very hard not to miss life even as I am busy making other plans.
Carol and I drive to and fro to the dump and to Market Basket and we talk. That easy kind of comfortable kind of talk that comes from living with another human being for 38 years.
I would call it small talk but I am becoming increasingly more aware that there is no small talk between family members.
Every word counts.
We bee bop up and down the aisles at Market Basket and I try to keep things light. Wise-ass comments and light sarcasm. It is one of only a few situations where I remind myself of my father.
He was a funny son of a bitch when he wanted to be.
I am also severely tuned in to the other couples who are shopping. To their conversations, to the way they relate to each other.
Carol and I were sliding down an aisle and a guy stopped short at the end of the aisle as his wife walked past and said: "Honey, it's in this aisle."
Small thing, but every couple is having similar conversations. "Do you remember how much of this we have at home? Should we buy the name brand or the store brand? Do you feel like barbecuing tonight?"
People relating to each other in easy, comfortable conversation, making small decisions, but what they are really doing is expressing their love for each other, displaying the unique relationship they have built for all to see.
Carol always says it is cheaper when she shops without me because I am always grabbing things that I suddenly realize I want.
Again, it reminds me of my father. When he was diabetic he would throw candy bars into the shopping cart when my mother was not looking. They would get to the checkout and my mother would say "Tony.................."
We are back home. We have unloaded the car and put all the food away. I am sitting on the porch with sweat running down my chest, typing and tapping away; Carol is inside watching the Sox, panicking, as the Blue Jays pull to within one run.
This is our life. Our life. One life created by two people.
The little things are so deeply meaningful.
I am content today. I'm pretty sure Carol is content today.
Pretty amazing thing when two people can create one life and live it with sincerity.