"Not all those who wander are lost" J.R.R. Tolkien

Friday, June 17, 2011


I am raising an Old Soul.  Within five minutes of his birth I realized he looked just like an old man (my father in law, minus the wrinkles, to be exact!) and the resemblance remains today.  One day, walking home with #1 from first grade, there was a group of high school kids walking in front of us and they were goofing off, being obnoxious and just generally acting their age.  #1 observed the juvenile behavior, shook his head wisely, looked me in the eye and said, "Teenagers!"  He was probably all of six years old.  He has a genuine affinity for antiques and anything nostalgic, be it old music, reproduction toys, or pickups of the 50's.  He has been known to wax eloquent about "the good old days" which could be be anything from the early 1900's to the 80's!

I'm certain it is genetic because I think I've always been an Old Soul as well.  Sorry, #1!   One example of this is that I have dreamed of being old and retired since practically my wedding day.  The idea of being footloose and fancy free (ie, kids with their own incomes) with Donald has always held strong appeal.  I imagined quiet mornings drinking tea and reading the paper together.  I imagined eating out  and traveling whenever the whim betakes us.  I imagined ballroom dancing classes.  Never in my retirement imaginings did I imagine being only 37 and teaching my boys at home.  Also, never did I imagine wanting to send my husband back to work so badly!  My number one piece of retirement advice is do not retire with someone who has PTSD and does not like to leave the house.  You will go crazy, trust me!  Luckily he is looking for a job and recognizes the need to eventually have a schedule again.  You know the red and green paper loop chains we all made in kindergarten to count down the days till Christmas?  I'm thinking of starting one to mark the days until a job turns up.

So what to do when the craziness finally becomes too much?  Well, you go running for one thing.  Secondly, you start looking forward to something.  Anything.  Just pick something.  I chose the grand opening of the Salem Trader Joe's and marked it on every calendar in the house. If you don't know about Trader Joe's, please come visit me and I will complete your education.  It is a marvelously small grocery store where you can buy inexpensive organic and gourmet food as well as normal, every day stuff.  Nothing genetically modified or shot up with hormones.  I could go on but I won't.  Instead, I'll tell you that I had difficulty sleeping last night because the new store was opening at 8 am this morning.  Yesterday my kids remarked that the fridge was getting empty; this is a huge concern to two boys who eat constantly and in large amounts.  I've been letting everything run out so I could buy it at TJ's this morning.

#2 and I arrived five minutes before they opened and the line was wrapped around the parking lot!  Amazingly enough it was actually sunny today which added spunk to the mood.  The lady in front of me informed us this is the biggest thing to happen to south Salem in years.  Local news channels busily interviewed people amid the island lilt of a steel drum band and all the workers hawking free samples.  The grand opening had all the hum and fanfare of an organized three ring circus.  I loved every minute!  I like crowds because no one knows me and no one cares.  And this was a happy crowd. No one was rude or pushy; everyone was generally so pleased to have a local TJ's that no one minded standing in cheerful checkout lines that lasted 20-30 minutes!  It was like a really big, fun birthday party!  When was the last time you saw that happen at Walmart?

Now that I've returned home with all my lovely, healthy packages and produce I've realized I'm probably a just little bit pathetic and that now I need another something to look forward to!

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