Thursday, February 26, 2009

Cleaning out old boxes and meeting with friends.

It's amazing what you find when you start doing a little early spring-cleaning. I am still going through old boxes. They say if you haven't used something in the last year then you should most definitely throw it out. I think I am the consummate pack-rat, I hate to throw anything out and the things I have in those boxes have been stored for a lot longer than a year. I came across this old USA map designed with children in mind, probably bought a long time ago for a forgotten project son-one-and-only had to do. It effectively stopped my clean-up as I studied it, and by the time I had finished studying the mood had left me. You know that mood don't you? The one that tells you you've had enough of going through old boxes and you drift off onto other things. I have the attention span of a flea these days.

Good job it was near the time I had to get ready, as I have started seeing friends more regularly now that I no longer have to go to the restaurant where I used to work. Off to Wegmans again, as I have mentioned before, my favorite supermarket. That place is starting to become our regular place, our "Cheers", though have to say no-one shouts "Norm" when we arrive. We can sit in their dining area upstairs after plopping ourselves down into the overstuffed chairs that are tucked away in one of their out-of-the-way corners. We can lose ourselves literally for hours and no one ever bothers you or even looks your way. There are enough tables and chairs for the lunch crowd and you don't feel you are overstaying your welcome. You don't get a staff member giving you one of those 'get-out-of here' stares and no one gets their little broom to sweep under your feet, to give you the hint to get your chatty selves off the premises.

That actually happened to me once and having not so long ago worked in the restaurant business I can sympathise, though I don't think I would ever have done that to any of my customers. For one thing, most of them were more like friends but I did visualize on certain days of great tiredness, getting the hook to yank them out the front door, God love them. Some dear souls knew me well and if they saw that I was falling asleep on my feet, they would ask me to sit down with them, which I did on a couple of occasions - only when things were quiet - and they would show me their baby photos, holiday photos and wedding photos. In some ways I miss those days, but for the time being I am loving my freedom. Attention span of a flea? You betcha!

So here I am at Wegmans and first thing I do is buy my coffee along with a breakfast sandwich and head upstairs. I can't tell you how good it is to see my friends' smiling faces. We drink our coffee and chat away through four-and-a-half hours. No hook was forthcoming in any direction. We managed to journey our way through many topics of conversation. The longest was Carol's summer and autumn in Scotland last year. She still has family over there. Like me she is British - Scottish - and we talked of highlands and bagpipes, and haggis and Rabbie Burns. It was wonderful. She and her husband have a home in a small hamlet and have made many friends. She showed us photos of quaint little cottages surrounded by glorious scenery, and we saw her friends at their gatherings, either at each others houses or at the local pub. Gail and I told her to expect long staying guests next year. We were kidding of course but she told us we could visit any time we wanted and I know she meant it so who knows, maybe one of these years we will take her up on it.

I brought things to a close when I told them it was two-thirty and I needed to get back before rush hour. I didn't want to be stuck in all that traffic. It is always the same, we express shock after looking at watches, and we go our separate ways until the next time one of us calls. Before I left I bought a lettuce and a hot house cucumber and headed for home. Traffic was heavy but free flowing. If I had left any later it would have been bumper to bumper.

I got home around 3.30 p.m. and pottered for a while. I didn't have to cook as we were eating more left-overs; spaghetti sauce made a couple of nights ago which we ate with angel hair pasta. I had made this the day before the squash dish I prepared yesterday; that we will be finishing off tomorrow. I LOVE left-overs. Dishes always taste better the day after anyway, they have a chance to get happy, isn't that what Emeril would say? I wonder if he eats left-overs? I threw together a salad and toasted a couple of pieces of cheese bread which popped out of the toaster just as Gregg walked through the door. He had called to say he was a few minutes away from home.

That's been my day today. It is now 11.47 p.m. and I am going to wrap up, get off to bed and wish you all sweet dreams. I'll be back tomorrow.

14 comments:

Jeannette St.G. said...

Really sound like you're beginning to enjoy your new found freedom!
I am like you, having a problem cleaning out old things, because so many memories are attached to them, even when you're not using them anymore:)
Once in a while, i get brave when I think, what if I would have to move??

Cathy said...

Hello Denise
Thank you so much for popping and leaving your lovely comments when I was feeling down. They say thats what friends are for:)

Its good to hear you are catching up with your old friends - its one way of not getting bored after changing the pace of life. Almost a good reason for leaving work lol

Take care
Cathy

Cezar and Léia said...

Dear Denise! Such a great time you had!I`m happy for you!Many thanks for your friendship!Have a nice Friday there!
God bless you
Léia

diane said...

The only way to clean out boxes of "stuff" is to be ruthless and hope you don't regret it.
Great idea keeping in touch with friends in real life.

Cactus Jack Splash said...

Thank you for visiting my bolg. Yours is very interesting.

Louise said...

To sit for more than 4 hours in overstuffed chairs chatting with friends sounds like heaven to me. I might fall asleep if I had that opportunity!

mommanator said...

thank God for stopping ya cleaning.

Strawberry Jam Anne said...

Sounds like you had a lovely time with your friends Denise and it is so enjoyable. It is something I have gotten used to since I retired - I love it.

I am also supposed to be "sorting" through things in readiness for whenever we sell our house, but not doing very well. A x

Patty said...

I think you are enjoying your days of not leaving the house for work. I know it took me a while. I was so use to leaving the house around 1:30 Mon-Thur and 8am on Fridays, that I didn't know what to do with myself. But I had retired at the end of June, so there was always something that needed to be done out in the yard. And I can truthfully say, I don't get bored easily. If have to set in a doctor's office and wait, I enjoy watching the people around me, or strike up a conversation with someone. The only time i get restless is if I have another appointment and waiting for the one will make the other one late. Spring cleaning, what's that?? LOL

Dot O said...

Only been to Wegman's once and loved it!!! The closest one is about 50 minutes away but I could spend an entire day walking and eating my way through that place!

Sarah Laurence said...

Denise, how fun to connect with you! We have something in common: my husband is English and lives with me in the USA, and he spent part of his childhood in Devon. We often visit family there. It sounds like you are making good use of your free time.

Leedra said...

If my hubby had called a few minutes had he wouldn't have caught me at the computer yet again!

On our trip home from Fla I saw a group of 5 ladies sitting in the Arby's knitting. Made me jealous. I would love to meet with a group of ladies to sit and knit. I could those complicated stitches I can't figure out on my own.

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Mary said...

I love the map and the first thing I did was look for Indiana to see what our picture was...and Indy racer was certianly no surprise! I knew I was behind with your blog, but I guess I missed that you no longer work at the tea shop? I hope it was a choice you made happily. I can see I had better read back through more of your blog :-) Loved the restaurant story...you are a good writer and I smiled a lot.

Walker said...

Wonderful post. I need to get going on some of the same.