Wednesday, December 3, 2008

40 days and 77 nights

...I'm not entirely sure about that statistic, but without further thought I think it's a good summary of how many days I've gone in to work vs. how many nights we've slept here in France... it still feels like I miss out a lot on what is going on with the kids, but on the other hand, I don't know if I'd want more... it's kind of funny but I miss some of the commuting time. My neighbor and friend Anne told me it took her a year to get used to the commute from Philly to New York... to try out various options, to figure out exactly what she wanted. I suppose it could be the same here; I still don't have the right balance or discipline in my daily routine... no time to read when it takes less than 10 minutes to commute door to door (and less than 5 of that sitting on the bus). Well, I think what I want is something I've been too exhausted lately to really pull off, until today. Today I woke up (always without an alarm) at 5:10, switched the laundry, went for my run, showered, got the kids out of bed for snuggle time, ate with them, and headed out the door. The only part that's missing is reading time, and maybe I'll get that in at lunch.

A reader mentioned yesterday that it seems like things are getting easier and easier every day. It's true! We are getting into a routine and we can predict how long things will take. For example, the laundry. We dragged all our seche-linge racks into the bathroom, got a small space heater, and now we know that our clothes will dry overnight. Before that it could take anywhere from an afternoon (if we were lucky enough to get sun) to a couple days. Since we generate a load a day, it's really hard to stay on top of the laundry if it doesn't dry... we can only hang up 2 or 2 1/2 loads...

The other day Rebecca said I get to see the sunrise on my runs... it's not true. That only happens during the spring and early fall, then again when the time change comes. Today I was running down dark corridors, that by day would seem like streets, but at 5:45 or 6:30 in the morning I am all alone in an otherwise deserted environment (I think only the bakers and bus drivers are out at this hour). I'm always afraid I'll startle someone as I come around a bend, or a dog will pop out of nowhere, or when the leaves rustle behind me that someone was there I didn't notice, or that a car will swerve around a blind curve in the wrong lane. My run is a good way to get some feeling coursing through my veins... partially because it takes so much willpower to keep moving that there's really little left by way of thought, and partially because of the way I run--often a new path, and often a loop. The idea is that if I go a new way, I gain the perspective of an adventure, while at the same time embracing the helplessness that comes along with being lost... It's a really great way to start my day.

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