Gotta love that hard frost

There’s a special joy to be had, sitting in the warm kitchen, looking out at the hard frost over the East Allen valley, as the sun threatens to encroach over the horizon. I know this, because I’m experiencing it right now for myself.

And if I am cheerful and ready for the day, it’s no thanks to the moderate amount of wine and whisky I imbibed yesterday evening; my tolerance has dropped away since we put ourselves on a strict 14 units of alcohol maximum throughout the week. Never mind, the less the better, of course, and rather like the reminiscence of nicotine, after a couple of years of abstinence, I’m not missing the over-consumption, much.

It’s strange how old habits can drift away, to be replaced by new ones. My new obsession is the keyboard, of course, and the daily word target. I’m living a vibrant interior life with my characters. I awoke this morning, startled with the realisation that I needed another scene of motivation or else the story would founder under a sudden onslaught of too-abrupt plot development. So I’ve sorted a better transition, I think. In the emerging novel, life goes on.

Transitions are also pre-occupying our own daily lives though, as ageing, aches and pains, and the changing seasons reflect our own passage through time. It’s fun to look forward, but in doing so there’s the bittersweet feeling of saying goodbye to the activities of previous years. Some things we simply can’t do anymore.

And yet, still the sun rises, and the frost glints on the little round picnic table. Soon it will have vanished, and I shall venture out for more heavy gardening, as much as I can manage before my breath becomes harsh and heavy. I shall try to find joy in the things I can still do, the tidiness I can still facilitate, and the exercise I can experience in the cold, crisp air.

And then, oh further joy, I can retreat into my warm, cosy nest and experience another scene vicariously through my beloved characters.

2 responses to “Gotta love that hard frost”

  1. Your thoughts in today’s Joy resonate with my 70 year old mind & body with a few exceptions. Having Type 1 diabetes for 66 years has put my physiological aging decades ahead of yours. No complaints bc it’s a small % of T1s who are long term survivors. That % however is growing all the time thanks to science.

    I indeed wish that I could engage in heavy yard work maybe even the lighter as in more spring planting. Isn’t there something gratifying about engaging with the rhythms of the changing seasons in our climate zones? On a side note Connie & I note that our climate is getting warmer My participation in Spring is down to planting herbs in patio garden boxes on our deck as well as a few annual flowers in already established beds. Still even the scaled-backed gardening is a gratifying experience.

    I end my comments with the opening  lines from a song by the 1970s group Kansas for the author to ponder:
    Carry on my wayward son
    There’ll be peace when you are done
    Lay your weary head to rest
    Don’t you cry no more, no…


  2. Lovely sentiments, Henry, delighted to read them! As you’ll see, I’ve had a bit of a computer crisis, so hadn’t been able to get through to, and respond to, the comments until now. As of today, I’m looking forward, if that’s the right sentiment, to finishing the last two scenes of my novel. Actually, I’ve so loved this phase, as the narrative tightens up and the story comes closer and closer to fruition. The penultimate scene should be straightforward, but the last one, yikes! I’m really dreading it, not only for when I shall have to sigh and figuratively affix the immortal words under the last line: ‘The End’ . . . I say figuratively, because that doesn’t seem to happen anymore. But it should happen, the end of the first draft, within the next few days, and then there will be the post-creative tristesse to deal with. I may be disconsolate! It’s possible that the joys will be fewer and further between, especially as I await the possibly damning verdict of my beta reader(s). But I shall try to be patient too. I’m very fortunate, as you’ve noted, still to be able to enjoy the delights of ‘heavy gardening’ which lately does consume much of my energy capacity. Anyway, thanks so much for thinking so deeply on these topics . . . quiet reflection somehow makes the transition into older age that much less fearsome!?


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