Two weeks in to the WEGO Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge and I’m dreaming of my ideal day. How would I spend it? With whom? A dream day …
Years ago, I had one of those dreams we’ve all had, realistic and lucid. In it, I had misplaced an important book and was searching high and low for it in an unfamiliar house. I awoke, a little frantic, not sure if I had only been dreaming, perturbed to have lost “the big book of simple pleasures,” wondering if, in reality, such a book had ever been in my possession. The idea of it appeals to me as does a day filled with simple pleasures that we take the time to consider. Because it is in the mundanity of life, within commonplace conversations and overlooked moments, that we find certainty. And so a day devoid of uncertainty would be a dream day for me.
On Sundays, I am slow to stir, in spite of the sunshine streaming in. Thinking I might still be asleep, my husband ever so quietly makes a pot of coffee. But I’m awake, enjoying the distinct sounds of newspaper pages turning, cereal filling a bowl, a slice of bread popping from the toaster, a stifled chuckle if my daughter has been successful in snagging the Sunday comics from the newspaper that has been strategically arranged for reading by my husband. There’s some outside interference – random arpeggios composed by wind-chimes that hang heavily from a magnificent Chilean mesquite tree in the middle of our backyard; the distant rumble of a truck on an otherwise abandoned freeway; the plaintive coo of a mourning dove, and the woof of a neighbor’s dog. Altogether, it’s a Sunday morning spell, cast just for me, its effects slow to subside. Workday mornings are different, of course. We’re a little more hurried and harried by thoughts of what and what not to wear, what needs to be turned in, last minute signatures on a permission slip, money for lunch, reminders to take vitamins and to have a really great day. Just one more cup of coffee, a goodbye hug and a kiss, “I love you,” “I love you too,” “See you tonight.” When it’s my turn to leave for work, I can count on three things: my husband will blow me a kiss, flash a peace sign, and watch until I disappear from view. A perfect farewell. Every day.
Quotidian moments such as these would saturate the space that stretches from sunrise to sunset on my dream day. No subtext, no surprises. Each of us on solid ground.
Being Boring by Wendy Cope
“‘May you live in interesting times,’ Chinese curse
If you ask me ‘What’s new?’, I have nothing to say
Except that the garden is growing.
I had a slight cold but it’s better today.
I’m content with the way things are going.
Yes, he is the same as he usually is,
Still eating and sleeping and snoring.
I get on with my work. He gets on with his.
I know this is all very boring.
There was drama enough in my turbulent past:
Tears of passion-I’ve used up a tankful.
No news is good news, and long may it last.
If nothing much happens, I’m thankful.
A happier cabbage you never did see,
My vegetable spirits are soaring.
If you’re after excitement, steer well clear of me.
I want to go on being boring.
I don’t go to parties. Well, what are they for,
If you don’t need to find a new lover?
You drink and you listen and drink a bit more
And you take the next day to recover.
Someone to stay home with was all my desire
And, now that I’ve found a safe mooring,
I’ve just one ambition in life: I aspire
To go on and on being boring.”