Tonight, the house is filled with the scent of roasting vegetables - potatoes, onions, sweet potatoes, cauliflower, and baking fish. It smells fabulous. Warm and full of interesting aromas. Does anyone else use the oven to heat the house? I leave the door open after I finish the cooking, and the oven cools while releasing the heat into the kitchen. Perfect. My house multi-tasks too.
It has been a wet and grey day, and had Jean and I not made plans to be at the gym at zero dark o clock this morning, I may well have stayed in bed a lot longer. I love lingering under the duvet when it is grey and revolting outside. Slothful, I know, but lovely. Clocks go back this weekend, so the evenings will be so dark. I absolutely hate the clocks going back. The countdown to the 21December begins immediately.
I have been back in the sewing room again this afternoon. Not sewing today, but cutting, ironing, pinning. So tomorrow, I can get things done. Putting things into thread colour piles. So many colours. Finding the matching threads. Finding bobbins - I need more bobbins. Note to self - go and get some next time you are in town. Why didn't I get them on Tuesday????? Sigh.
One day very soon, I will have to empty the boxes and find out what I have for Christmas and what I still need to think about. I pop things away and then forget them. At least this year I remember where the things are which I lost last year. Cupboards on the deck if I forget and start wailing, people. Never mind that between me and those cupboards is a mountain. I am brave. I can conquer mountains.
Did I mention mountains??
When Andrew was at junior school, there was a Big Walk every year in the forest at the foot of the mountains to raise funds for his school. They were always raising funds. I forget what for. The course took the boys up into the mountain, along contour paths high up and then down again. Challenging. Fun. If you were between 5 and 12. This was a wonderful family event. Parents all arrived, most happily waved their offspring off as they ran the 10kms like the wind (walk? You think young kids will WALK???) and settled down to start the braai (BBQ), pop open a bottle of wine and relax in the forest, while chatting to friends, and the little ones played together in streams. Perfect. Wonderful. Civilised. A great family event. Some valiant adult souls did the walk too. For fun. Some were marshals, of course. And every year for 5 of the 7 he took part in the Big Walk, I swore I would do it one day. Then came the 6th year. I had recently lost a huge amount of weight. I was a stick insect, in fact. Way too thin. My dietitian had lost her mind. Anyway. I decided to do the walk as well. In fact, I decided to RUN up the mountain. Not having trained for a second.
Well. Andrew and Diana were well ahead, and I was running with a couple of friends, and by the time we got above the tree line and had an excuse to stop and admire the beautiful view, I was positively light headed. Crazy would have been another accurate description. Thankfully, the rubbery legs got as far as a water station, and after being yelled at by the more sensible adults manning it, and having litres of water poured into the system, we set off again. At a slow plod. It was that or the indignity of a tractor, and we were not prepared to be humiliated. Oh no, we were not.
You know, maybe my love of the mountains and walking through their forests was born that day. The day I had to slow down and breathe and had the time to look around and take in the beauty. The pride may have been slightly dented, but I saw the trees. The shadows. The soaring peaks. The sunlight dappling the leaves. And my son was impressed that I had actually managed to finish the course. So was I. I was ever so speedy heading for my chair next to the BBQ.
Thankfully, I happened to be pregnant the next and final year. Very very pregnant. Perfect excuse. I reclined in the chair and did nothing. I did take photos. That is what Mums are supposed to do. They are not supposed to run up mountains. And we will ignore the fact that my 10 year old finished hours before me.