It's the first day of April and the weather person promises record breaking temperatures - like in the 70's! It's a day like this I've been waiting for since last October. We have had a few warm sunny days, but they lasted just a few hours before temps dropped and grey skies spit a few flakes to freeze my soul.
But those bits of sun here and there woke up the dormant sleeping porch lover in me, and I have been busy - not on blogging - but on redecorating the screen/sun/sleeping porch, getting books and teaching papers done and discovering the life appreciating jolt in the heart that comes when disasters strike.
The Passport - the first heart and soul tremor.
I love Holland and England and well, travel in general. On April 26th I will be flying off to visit my very cool friend Joke in Holland. The trip has been planned for months as I scrapped together frequent flier miles, figured out dates from arcane airline web pages and working on the felt book class I will be giving during my time in Amserfoort. Imagine my shock when I was told that because my passport expires in June, I could not use it for travel. Seems that one's passport needs at least six months of unexpired life left or one cannot enter most foreign countries. I would be captured in Schiphol Airport and shuffled back to the USA in some cargo plane full of other rejected items!
Hyperventilating and thanks to the passpost guy in our local post office, I had that passport form, pictures, a huge personal check and all my hopes in an expedited expensive next-day-delivered envelope on it's way to some government office within hours and a WEEK later had a new passport. Most be a slow season somewhere.
Another disaster occurred when my ancient, wonderful $5 Good Will espresso machine blew up almost a week ago. It was horrifing and sad. It's name was Charlie and we made coffee every single day for almost 7 years. After that much time together it was almost beyond my abilities to figure out what to do - which was to spend several days on the computer checking consumer reports and web sites for the best espresso machine within my price range. One just can't count on Good Will when the chips are down. The result is in the photo - Marco DeLonghi - my Amazon espresso object of worship. I still have to hold the instructions in one hand while checking water temps with the other. Who knew coffee could be so tempermental. But, oooo, the taste!
And finally, everyone's great disaster-heart-stopper this time of the year, le taxes. I have laid out the papers on every table in the house hoping that seeing them at every turn would guilt me to work. Didn't work. But instead the porch has been almost completely transformed...walls and floors repainted, a fabulous green bench was found at the auction house, new curtains hung, a day bed moved in instead of uncomfortable futon, goodwill pillows were gathered, a few ferns to hang...
And now I am almost back to the artistic life - Sitting in the sun on the porch has done wonders for getting books stitched and teaching plans firmed up. Yes, I get my wifi out there and if I can find a small bar for the G&Ts and enough power for Marco's life affirming coffee, I'm not moving until Jane comes to take me to the airport (clutching that precious passport in my hand).