Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Another day in front of the window

This political book I'm doing seems to have no end, like the crazy surreal world it is attempting to capture. I feel guilty, because I had accepted another job editing someone's manuscript, and the author of that work has already waited a month for me to get started. With RBG dying last week, it is possible she may have to wait a month more. I am trying to craft an email to her explaining things. I know she is anxious to get her book done and sold, her family could use the money, but I simply can't abandon the first project until it is completed. This is why I've been a little scarce around here, working intensely all day and reading your posts on my phone when I fall into bed at night, but not commenting much. Please know my silence is not a lack of care.

My niece who has been living with us for the past year went home to her parents in Orlando for a while. She hadn't seen them since January, and decided she could work remotely just as well from there as she could from here. She doesn't go back into her office in New York City for at least another month, maybe more, so it's just the man and me again, puttering together, being outraged at the news together, moving around each other with gentle humor and untucked ease. 

I'm starting to reconnect with friends I haven't set eyes on in forever. I went for a walk and then sat on benches in the gardens where I live with two different women on Friday and Saturday last, chatting and soaking up the sun. And the week before, I sat with five other women under a tree in Central Park, our folding chairs in a socially distanced circle, catching up on our lives in quarantine. On the bench we wore masks. In the park circle, we took them off, trusting the wafting breezes to blow our invisible droplets away. New York continues to do well, with positive cases at less than one percent, and fewer than five covid deaths a day in the state, none of them in the city most days. But people are still dying from this thing. We are trying to figure how to live this masked life and love each other safely.

Up there in Cambridge, my girl and her guy continue to live a rather more social existence on campus, meeting up with their new friends almost daily. Last Sunday, her love's section group and their partners all went on an apple picking outing, organized by the school. It was outdoors and masked, ergo safe, though these young people have also begun to gather in each others homes. Most of their get togethers are still in rooftop bars or on lawns. But it's getting colder now. I wonder if the school created these section pods within the larger class so that new students might get to know one another, since classes are still all virtual. The students (but not the partners) still get tested twice a week, so if anyone comes up positive for covid, they can quickly trace contacts within the designated sections. Maybe they also intentionally placed my girl and her love in a section where almost all the students relocated with partners.

That's my girl with her puppy, Munch, with whom we have all fallen in love. Munch also has fans on campus, with human friends scheduling regular play dates with him. My daughter reported that one woman told her she had overheard her husband on the phone to his mom saying, "There's a dog here I  love so much. His name is Munch and he has such a joy for life." Munch is indeed scrappy and affectionate and energetic and sometimes hysterically bored. Did I mention they tested for his DNA? He is half English Bulldog, a quarter Beagle, an eighth miniature Schnauzer and an eighth mutt. His shaggy brindle coat probably comes from his Schnauzer ancestry.

Here's a blast from the past I ran across recently. The photo of my husband and me was taken during carnival in Antigua one summer. We weren't yet married. I was a year older than my daughter is now, and the man was two years younger than me. Honestly? I still wonder how I got so lucky that this tall handsome man with the dancing wit and steady heart chose me. Thirty four years later, I choose him still.


  1. In spite of the anxiety and the time management issue this is such a cute and lovely post, You are all darlings and i heart you! I used your quote in my covid journal of tiny silly watercolors, you are genius and say just the right thing at just the right moment. AND you are adorable as adorable as that puppy! A quarter beagle, that is where he gets his wit!( of course i had a beagle)

  2. I'm sorry (not sorry) but HUBBA-HUBBA!
    And honey? Lord, you are a beauty.
    It's no mystery that your kids are gorgeous.
    Half English Bulldog? I never would have guessed that. That little video is hysterical. "Fetch? Oh. Are you talking to me?"
    Never apologize for having to use your time to earn your living with your art! You are the most disciplined person I know.
    Enjoy your sweet husband-and-you time. It can be a beautiful experience.

  3. The video is hilarious. What, me run after THAT? Nah. Our daughter's dog will chase a kicked ball, but will not return it. If she catches it, it is HERS!

  4. That dog is so cute it hurts me. Your weekend sounds fabulous.

  5. I remember reading your blog a few years ago and you were worried you wouldn't have enough work. I'm guessing that ship has sailed:)

    I'm glad you're able to see friends again, safely. I had lunch out today with my daughter in law, her parents and my hubby. It felt nice and weird at the same time. We all work with high risk people and all take care to protect ourselves and others but it still felt odd.

    Munch is a cutie. And the not fetching, it's a beagle thing.

    And your hubby, he just has excellent taste.

  6. Munch is gorgeous. I have a 100% mini schnauzer !
    Beautiful photos of your girl and her dog, and you and your young man.

  7. lovely to read your writing again, Rosie. As i noted on FB messaging, i am moving toward extricating myself from that morass; blog world feels lie a return to earlier, less horrifying times. i am happy to keep a maternal eye on your daughter (she's not that far from me) if you keep an eye on my son; theyre back in Brooklyn for a while. i love your stories of beautfiul you meeting handsome suitor... xo

  8. So enjoyed your post (even though I share your anger and frustration about so much right now)...but the Munch video (he shares the same non-compliant trait with my dog), news about daughter and niece, photos of you and your husband...well, they all speak to what is GOOD with the world. Thanks. And good luck with the book(s).

  9. You are balancing work and life with Grace. Boy that Schnauzer blood in Munch is strong even if it's only a tiny slice of his heritage! New York's Success at mitigating Spread gives me renewed Hope that other parts of the Country might follow that example eventually. Here in Arizona they misbehave far too much so we get a couple thousand new cases daily and so many deaths that it's heartbreaking. We live near a Cemetery and they're having as many as a dozen Funerals daily now. Before the Virus you might have seen one every few Weeks. You and your Lifelong Love are such a gorgeous Couple, then and now. Continue to Be Well and Stay Safe.

  10. I'm glad you are getting out to see your friends now, and am really pleased that covid cases are dropping in NY. Here in the UK numbers are going up again and we are close to going back into another lockdown. At the moment bars and restaurants have to close at 10.00pm and you aren't allowed to mix with any group bigger than 6. But I'm such an anti-social homebody that neither of those restrictions bother me.

  11. That table by the window where you write is beginning to seem archetypal to me. A place you return to again and again to work in the midst of a full family life in the context of a complicated world. Thank you for posting the photo of you and your beloved. In love then and in love now.

  12. I am with Lilycedar, remembering your worries about work and I am delighted for you now, even if it's getting a bit much.
    I love the way you all take care of each other, one way or another and what a good place to meet friends, under a tree!
    Look after yourself, don't work too hard.

  13. You are a beautiful couple and seem made for each other. Nice that you are able to gather (social distancing & mask) with friends. Writing and editing always seems to have peaks and valleys. Nature of the beast? Good to hear all is well in Cambridge and it seems you daughter and her love (plus sweet Munch) have settled in nicely. I am happy to be well and am glad that you are well too. For that I am grateful.