Thursday, August 10, 2006

Vacation update

So, for the better part of the last year, I have worked my two jobs pretty much non-stop. I would get up at 6:30 am, work out, then do some freelance work whilst cooling down before my shower. (If you don't cool down enough after a workout, the shower just doesn't "take." I bet Fatmammycat knows what I mean.) Then I would do the freelance work during my lunch break at my regular job, then I would do the freelance work at home after work. Cook/eat/clean-up dinner, then back to my desk to transcribe interviews until I couldn't stand it anymore and dropped, to begin the whole process again the next day. Weekends? What weekends? I was working 7 days a week. FROM AUGUST OF 2005 until JUNE OF 2006.

Tired? You could say that.

Then, for some reason, this summer the freelance work dried up. A large job I was expecting has never appeared, and though I could use the extra money, the break has been kind of nice. And for the last week of July, I had LITERALLY NOTHING TO DO at work. So, when I realized that I had 25 days of vacation banked at my regular job, I thought, " 'allo! I'll just take this PAID time off, take the longest vacation I've had since grade school, go back to work August 21, and Bob's yer uncle, I'll be well rested and ready to whup my weight in wildcats well before registration."

Remember those limitless summer days when you were a kid? No agenda, all the time in the world, wandering hither and yon, at will? Well, that's the kind of vacation I was nostalgic for. Not one where you take one week off, only start relaxing on the Thursday, and then you go back to work on Monday, which is my usual M.O. But one where the summer seemed limitless...that's what I was after.

But being a clean freak, I would never be able to enjoy this kind of freedom if my house was a mess.

So, since coming back from Newport, I have spent 3 days getting this apartment absolutely spotless. The bathroom is gleaming, the floors are swiffered to slippery, shiny gorgeousness, the fridge is cleaned out, defrosted, organized and full of fresh, organic produce and other healthy comestables, rugs are vacuumed and dust-free, laundry cleaned, folded, and put away, and I am free to do whatever the hell I want.

What to do, what to do. Well, what better way to spend a beautiful summer afternoon than wandering around a graveyard?

So, after yesterday's workout, the longest I've allowed myself since I don't know when, I took a 3-hour stroll around Mt. Auburn Cemetery. I'm lucky enough to live within walking distance (about a mile from door to gate) and after 3 years of talking about it and never actually GOING, I decided yesterday was the day.

It's a spectacular, gorgeous place. Some beautiful and interesting statuary, beautifully landscaped, full of little gothic touches. A little medieval-looking chapel, a tower you can climb and see all of the Boston area spread out before you in all directions, a couple of ponds, some famous graves, and best of all? Because it was 3pm on a Wednesday, I pretty much had the entire place to myself.

I spent the first hour trying to find the tower. (The trees were so fully in bloom that you couldn't see it until you were under it, and I didn't want to stop at the office for a map. Maps? I didn't want no stinkin' map. The whole point was to wander aimlessly.) Evidently the tower is a monument dedicated to George Washington, though it wasn't built until 100 years after his death or something like that... I dunno.

Right, found the tower, climbed to the top, and stood at the top for about 20 minutes, feeling like the Queen of Absolutely Fucking Everything. When I climbed down? Well, my legs were a bit wobbly (from all the working out and the climb - my poor pale chubbies weren't used to all this work) so I found a little bench and took a breather. And when I got up?

WILDLIFE! I wandered to within 10 feet of a hawk, the size of a freakin' border collie, with a freshly killed quirrel in its claws, and he was staring at me as if to say, "Christ, woman, can't a guy have a quiet meal anymore?" I wished him a quiet bon appetit, and backed away slowly.

Then I found one of the little ponds, and a heron - I SHIT YOU NOT - flew over my head, no more than a few feet away. A HERON! Sweet, dancing Jaysus!

Then I got lost. For, like, an hour. And I started to worry. My legs were still twitching with lactic acid, I was starting to get thirsty, and this place covers about 175 acres - full of twist and turns and tree-lined paths. You can find a fence, sure, but it's more than likely across town from where you went in!

Anyway, I found my way out, obviously. And the walk home was a bit tough, what with the shaky legs and dehydration setting in. I'm sure I looked pretty frightening when I got to the Dunkin' Donuts in Coolidge Square and bought a lemonade, then guzzled the whole thing in one go. (And I NEVER drink those shitty, sugary drinks. But my body was screaming "SUGAR!!! GIMMEEEEE" so I did.)

My legs are killing me. Today? Maybe I'll drive to the mall.


Blogger P1P said...

I am a fan of graveyards too. They always seem so peaceful. Thought I'd say hi after being away and thanks for the concerned comment. I am back on my feet and looking for trouble.

11 August, 2006 06:07  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I envy your day so much, sounds heavenly. Jealous like a fox. And I TOTALLY get the shower scene too, ya know where you try to soap and you can't and then you try to dry but ya can't do that either. Vile. Our gym has changed its heating for the summer, the shower area is like the middle of the antartic, but as soon as you head back into the tropical region of the locker rooms you immediately start to sweat all over again. Super double vile.
On the plus side, IT IS FRIDAY!

11 August, 2006 09:11  

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