My kitchen is a mess in the summer. Always. The floor has bits of dried leaves and things that all three of us (husband, dog, me) track in from the garden, the countertop always has some dirt-filled things, like garlic drying or onions. Right now there is a bowl of raspberries left over from breakfast, to be snacked on until they’re gone (before lunch). Soon, I hope, the perpetual bowl of tomatoes will be there.
We live as much outside as inside during the summer, and while my winter kitchen is spotless and everything is in its place, the summer kitchen tends to be a riot of seeds, plants, and rooting cuttings, compost for the worm bin and on and on and on. Sometimes it bugs me, and I get busy, cleaning, cleaning, but the next day it’s back to its normal summer state. And I guess I’m growing to love it.
When the tomatoes are over, the pickles are in the pantry, the rest of the produce in the freezer, my kitchen will again be clean and ready for the winter. And then I’ll miss the chaos, and I’ll miss my summer kitchen.
Meanwhile, I’m kind of enjoying the mess.
Four of my books are now available for the Amazon.com Kindle. Suspicions, Black Leather, Lizard Wine, and Candyland can all be downloaded and read on their electronic reader.
NPR’s Morning Edition had a great story on the Kindle last Monday. I love mine. I like reading books on it, but my favorite is magazines. They’re so cheap and downloaded automatically, and on Sunday, I can get the NY Times Sunday edition for $.75 without even getting out of bed. Sweet.
Anyway, another way publishing is changing, and, I believe, for the better.
I’ve been a practicum student at Serenity Lane this summer, a drug and alcohol treatment facility in town, working with the chaplain as she ministers to the spirits of the patients. What an education that has been! Yikes. I see myself in so many of them — their eyes, their stories, their fears, their shame. I identify and empathize, and yet I know the other side of that misery as well. If only they will stick with it, if only they could glimpse what I know to be true about a clean and sober life…
If only that insecure but talented writer could keep the faith and keep putting the butt in the chair and keep pumping out the words. If only they could glimpse what I know about successes as a writer…
If only that young married couple could stick it out, reach deep and find the reasons they were attracted to each other in the beginning, and rekindle that respect for each other. If only they could glimpse what I know about the sublime pleasure in a long satisfying marriage…
These are the pleasures of age.
I am one of the extraordinarily fortunate ones, and I am grateful every second of every minute. The question now is how to share the knowledge in a meaningful way. Other than walking the talk–which I try to do, and accomplish with varying levels of success–that is the current quest.
But more will be revealed, if I suit up and show up, and that’s what I’m doing.
What a summer.