Welcome back to Solo at Sixty!
This past Saturday I found myself at loose ends. For the first time in… umm… forever, I had nothing planned! Remember, I love routine, and am a huge planner. Yet here I was, not at work and not at the beach. I have worked a lot these past 15 months, often on the weekends as well. Working was good for keeping me busy and keeping my mind off of things in my personal life. But now I am past that stage. I no longer need the distraction. But this was a new thing – a total day off with nothing scheduled! What to do? After Friday night’s impromptu protest on the campus of UVA, and the predicted “unrest” for our downtown area, I decided it would be wise to skip my normal Saturday routine of going downtown to the Farmers’ Market and running through UVA. Good move on my part! For anyone who did not have their TV on last weekend, our lovely city of Charlottesville was invaded by a hateful group opposed to the City’s decision to move the Robert E. Lee statue out of Emancipation Park (formerly known as Lee Park) in downtown Charlottesville. I will not go into the politics of these decisions, nor give value to these violent protests. Just saying that our lovely city was dealt a black eye. And it affected my Saturday routine as well as all the downtown businesses and restaurants.
I decided to take a cycle class away from the Downtown area instead of running, and when I got to the studio, I asked if the rope wall yoga class after cycle was full. Lucky me! There was one spot left and it had my name written all over it! Sidebar: When my son was little, the kids and I were back-to-school shopping at the mall, circling the parking lot several times before we finally found an open spot. I said “that spot has our name written all over it.” To which my son said, “where?!?! I don’t see our name anywhere!” Kids are so literal.
“Each person deserves a day in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for. Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares that will not withdraw from us.” Maya Angelou
If you remember my first blog, I mentioned how much I like yoga but never seem to find time for it. Well, Saturday I had time. Plenty of time. I love the yoga teacher and I love the rope wall. It is such a different yoga experience. I could actually talk to my neighbors without getting the evil eye from all the yogis! As a matter of fact, we were encouraged to talk to and help our neighbors with positions and poses. If you have never experienced yoga on the rope wall, it is wonderful for getting into deep poses as you have stability from the ropes, while gravity pulls you into position. I love inversions (upside down – like my life last year) and my favorite position is the STARFISH (upside down with arms and legs outstretched – my kids vetoed this picture!). It reminds me of the beach. PLUS, my girlfriends and I always joked that when our spouses were out-of-town, we could sleep like starfish. One of the benefits of being SOLO is sleeping like a starfish all the time!
Lucky me again! As I was leaving the studio after cycle and yoga, a farmer’s market was set up right across the way. I bought peaches, zucchini, and eggplant to supplement the veggies from my garden for the week. Well, actually for the short week, as I am at my happy place (BEACH) the rest of this week until my reunion this weekend. More on that later.
“You don’t always need a plan. Sometimes you just need to breathe, trust, let go and see what happens.” Mandy Hale
So what to do now? Cycle, Yoga, Farmers’ Market. Done. Sitting in my car having the smoothie I had made to enjoy after cycle, (not knowing it would be 2 hours later after yoga too) I pondered my dilemma of what to do with this “me time.” I headed to the nail salon to get a pedicure and yes, I chose the Essie color “WIFE GOES ON”! (It is now my favorite color – even bought a bottle of it to have on hand.) While being pampered with the pedicure, I watched with dismay, disbelief, and horror, the national news about what was going on downtown, barely a mile away from me. This was NOT my Charlottesville! My daughter works at a vineyard a few weekends a month, so I texted a friend about going out there to see her, far away from downtown. My friend and her husband picked me up and off we went. We got a bottle of wine, bread and cheese, and sat outside and enjoyed the serenity and beautiful views of the VA mountains. We were joined by my friends’ son, his girlfriend and her lovely friends who were in Charlottesville, visiting for the first time. We assured them how special and beautiful Charlottesville is, as evidenced by the views at King Family, not by what was going on downtown. Unfortunately, their dinner reservations were cancelled as most of the restaurants in Downtown Charlottesville closed due to the actions of the “visitors” to our town. So they visited with us instead. Nothing like surrounding yourself with a group of beautiful, fun, young people to lift your spirits! There was a lot of laughter and a lot of wine consumed! And actually, I think those young people enjoyed hanging out with us “old folks”!
Speaking of beautiful, fun, young people – oh wait, these people will not be young, but they will be beautiful to me! I am heading to my 41st high school reunion this weekend. Remember in last week’s blog I mentioned that we now have a reunion every year? We need to cherish every chance we get to spend time with “old” friends. Hopefully I will have a lot to share next week about the reunion.
“Allow yourself to rest. Your soul speaks to you in the quiet moments in between your thoughts.”
As I said before, I am such a planner that rarely do I have days with nothing to do. I usually find myself at the beach on these weekends, but my older daughter was in town Thursday night before heading to NC Friday for a wedding. Not missing a chance to spend time with my kids! My calendar is already scheduled out to December with beach trips, a trip to NYC, football tailgating weekends, parties, weddings, trips to visit my family and friends, plus I do work one weekend a month to get my financials out. So finding myself free was a bit disconcerting. But it was a wonderful day spent doing just what I wanted. Another perk of being SOLO!
“Sometimes, the best “action” is to be still. Take time to breathe into the wind, focus on the horizon, and look inside for the answers. There will be time enough for getting busy.” M. B. Moss
What did Sunday bring, you ask? Don’t! No, just kidding. It was a good day as well. I headed downtown to my office early morning and along the way I noticed that the police presence was still very much in sight. State police as well as local police. But there were also people running, walking, having brunch outside. Restaurants were open and business was thriving. Our church service was dedicated to the horror our city had witnessed the day before, and was very comforting. Since I will be off to the beach for the latter half of this week, I went back to the office after church before heading home mid-afternoon to pick those last veggies in my garden and sit on my back porch watching a Hallmark movie and working on my blog. Life goes on.
I have realized that we all need to take (or make) time for ourselves. And we need to make the most of every day because we never know what tomorrow may bring.
Here’s to you West Forsyth Classes of ‘75 ‘76 ‘77! I cannot wait to see your beautiful faces this weekend!