Rain in the night & flowers

TWICE OVER the past week, a premature and gentle rain fell in the middle of the night. The datura are blooming as are red-hot pokers, bridal bouquets, birds of paradise and little white roses. The occasional weed too.

I am of two minds regarding the rain, which normally does not begin till June. It’s good in that it cools our world down. It’s bad in that it encourages grass to grow, grass that will need to be cut, and the lawnmower has yet to receive its annual servicing.

red-bopAlso awaiting servicing is the Honda, which has reached 210,000 kilometers. I should have dropped it off at the garage a month ago, but we had this Kung Flu thing that put lots of chores on hold. Same for the lawnmower.

My child bride is getting skinny — well, skinny for her, which is still lovely — due to her gym being shut. What she’s lost is a bit of muscle weight, but the gym reopens next week, we were told by phone yesterday. She’ll be pumping iron soon. The Plague Year has caused many people to get fatter, not skinnier, but she’s always been a bit of a contrarian.

As previously announced here, next Sunday is our official end to staying (mostly) at home, no matter what everyone else is doing. Obviously, the gym agrees with us. I’ve already started to bust out. So far this week, I’ve gone to the post office and a carwash, neither of which was “essential.” This afternoon we’re driving downtown to visit a pastry shop for a sack of breakfast biscuits. I can’t abide by Costco’s version anymore.

During that same excursion, we’ll visit a yarn store because my child bride needs more of the purple stuff she prefers this month for a sweater.

Springtime, usually the most miserable season here, has been fairly bearable this year. Must be that climate change everyone is in a tizzy about. If that is the cause, I’m not a climate-change denier, I’m a climate-change lover.

Challenges of an aging carcass

AT 73, I FIND myself faced with challenges.

bodyGetting older is an interesting process. I do not recommend it, but it is interesting. It only recently began to pummel me. That began at 73. It will, of course, vary with other individuals.

Up until 73, there were physical changes, but they were almost entirely a reduction in energy, nothing extreme but noticeable. I passed my 73rd in August, and that’s when things racheted up a few nasty notches.

First the foot problem, which I wrote about last September. That appears to be permanent. It’s only an issue for about a minute after I stand up after being seated a spell, but I’ll never again be able to flee from someone or something chasing me. With an ax or an appetite.

I am easily nabbed now.

Then there was the back issue, which I wrote about last month. Not the first time I’ve suffered that problem, but it’s never lasted so long, a tad over two weeks of Hell. Usually, it self-cures in four to five days. Big difference.

It was the back issue that knocked me upside the head.

I had been getting lazier by the day, and that needed to change.

For decades, I’ve done regular, moderate exercise, and I eat healthy. For these reasons I have been svelte for almost 40 years. But my regular, moderate exercise had been very gradually diminishing. I knew I had to change my habits.

Old routine: 20-minute, brisk, morning walk around the neighborhood plaza Monday-Friday. I often cheated on the frequency. And I have a home gym set, a big fancy one I bought about decade ago. I was doing a 10-minute weight routine three mornings a week. Again, cheating was not unknown.

New routine: 20-minute, brisk, morning walk around the neighborhood plaza Monday-Friday with no more cheating on the frequency. A second brisk walk around the big plaza downtown following my afternoon coffee. Weight routine on the gym set every weekday morning. No cheating allowed. Yoga. Well, that’s what I call it, but it’s actually two sets of stretching, one in the morning, one in the late afternoon. Weekends off.

I was losing my flexibility to a notable degree. Thus the stretching, which helps a lot.

I’ll close now with the following words from Welsh poet Dylan Thomas. The “good night” being, well, you know …

Possibilities

I’VE BEEN SINGLE — and I’ve been married. A lot.

Three times.

Being single doesn’t hold much appeal, and now that I’m considerably older, it holds even less.

Actually, I loathe being single. Maybe I subconsciously married someone 16 years my junior to virtually guarantee that I’ll sail off into the ether before she does.

She goes to the gym three evenings a week. During those times, when I walk through the bedroom, the above is what I see, and I imagine it as a permanent scene. Grim.

I prefer the photo below.

Late in the day

STANDING IN the darkening bedroom between the king bed and the huge window, I watch it raining.

Late afternoon.

Between me and that window is a love-seat equipal and its matching single seat, both dark green, the first furniture I bought in Mexico years back.

The green is cloth, which differs from the more common cowhide you see on most equipal furniture. I had the set special made in Guadalajara, and it took ages to get here.

It’s fading now, the back, due to abutting that open window. I’m fading too but for other reasons. Time.

The rain bounces off the monster aloe vera just to the left and the leaves of the golden datura straight ahead.

My child bride is at the gym, so I’m standing solo, waiting for her, which I do many evenings. If she’s not at the gym, she’s swapping family tales with her sister.

She’ll be home before 8.

I’ll have two big salads made, our supper we enjoy on lounge chairs upstairs while watching something on Netflix.

Dull old people in the mountains of Mexico.

This has been going on for years. Sometimes it’s raining and cool. Other times it’s dry and cold. And yet other times — springtime — it’s dry and stuffy.

But now it’s raining and cool. I stare out the window and wonder, how did this happen? It’s good.

When I get up in the middle of the night for a wizz, I often pause at the bathroom window to see the streetlight and the mountains if the moon is out.

How did this happen?

It’s said that life is what happens while you’re making other plans. This is usually understood to be negative, but sometimes plans pale in the face of sweet, accidental reality.