Today I’m actually blogging in the more typical sense. I know, shock, horror! Actually, one reason this blog tends to get the once-a-week post is that’s usually all I have time or mental energy for. Buuuut I’ve had a wonderful dose of extra time by taking last Friday though Tuesday off from work. I have about a billion vacation and personal days and I decided it was high time to actually use some of those. No worries for anyone following along with Once, there will still be another post devoted to that tale on Sunday.
So, what have I done with this sanity reclaiming time? Well, nothing extremely exciting actually…but I’m okay with that. Still, each day has had at least one something special going on:
Friday: Made a day trip to Wake Forest (it was only a half-hour trek in the car so I’m not sure that counts as “day tripping”) and stopped by the Storyteller’s Bookstore. The actual visit left me feeling a little disenchanted – a much smaller store than envisioned for sure. Not a bad bookstore mind you and if you happen to live in or near the area, it’s worth checking out. This was just one of those cases where the expected experience in my head did not match up with the one in real life. But onward I went and ended up grabbing some tea and a scone with devonshire cream at a The Olde English Tea Room just down the block. If you are a fan of tea and delectable yummies, I highly recommend seeking out the nearest tea room in your area!
Saturday: This was mostly a lazy day but I did make it out to tour at the Triangle Brewing Company in Durham with one of my writer groups. Yes, our writer group did a brewery tour. Now granted, writing and beer are not two things one might normally associate with each other but as, one person pointed out, Tolkien and C. S. Lewis met at a pub (Oxford’s Eagle and Child Pub to be exact). Awesome time – got to sample two yummy glasses of the product and chatted with new friends about everything from writing to organic farming. Though I will say this: after learning more about the beer making process, I will certainly stick to purchasing rather than trying to make it myself. What the fine people at actual breweries can produce is far better than anything I could ever make. I say this with confidence after trying my hand at making ginger beer a couple months ago. I’m not entirely sure what the brownish, face-puckering concoction I made actually was, but it was far from drinkable.
Sunday: Not much to write home about for this day – except that I did actually get a small amount of writing done. Consumed caffeinated goodness at the Starbucks in ye olde Barnes and Noble (putting that coffee shop inside a bookstore was absolute genius on someone’s part) and parked myself at a table to dot down in the ending of a revised chapter add in for Future Memories. And yes, that was sans laptop – paper and pen were merrily put to use. Now I’m (obviously) not against using the computer and technology – but there’s just something about going old school and writing things out. You can cross out sentences that aren’t working, write little notes for a sudden eureka that might be handy later, draw arrows to connect things. I don’t know why, the physical act of writing is part of the fun to me even though it means needing to go through the extra work of having to transcribe all those scribblings onto the computer. Yep, call me crazy.
Monday: I will sum today’s events up with the library and bread.
I know trekking to the library likely sounds as exciting an activity aspiration as cleaning the bathroom but I tell you, I was quite pleased with the idea. And even though I’ve been living in Raleigh for over three years, I’d had yet to actually get my Wake County library card. Strangely much like doing a load of laundry, completing this simple task gave off a satisfying feel of accomplishment. Hooray for simple victories!
Today was also when I tried making homemade bread for the third time – though I’m not entirely sure if I would say the loaf I created was a success. My first two attempts were so scrumptious, they nearly had me thinking bread making must be some secret gift I never knew I had. Until today. This loaf was very moist and dense (I would actually call it “yeasty” though it is baked fully and was hollow when I tapped to check it). After reading trouble shooting tips on the Web, I’ve determined my impatient self just didn’t give the poor thing enough rising time or my kitchen was a little too cold during that last hour when you let the dough sit all by its lonesome in the pan. However, I’ve happily discovered that even when the bread you home bake has some glaring character flaws, it can still toast up quite nicely. I added a little butter to my rescued slice and chomped through most of it while drinking a Blue Moon. I would have eaten the whole slice had it not been for this chain of events: placed plate with yummy toast on bed to fiddle faddle on the the computer, cat daughter Patches did her duty in the litter box and scratched around in it for a short eternity like a bull hopelessly waiting for a matador to appear, cat daughter hopped up on the bed immediately afterward to her new napping spot and mashed one of her kitty paws smack dab in the middle of the buttered toast. Ewwww. Good thing homemade bread is cheap – that fact helps create less guilt after you’ve yelled at your cat daughter and find yourself tossing the formerly edible toast into the depths of the trash.
Hmmm. Tea, beer, coffee, and bread. I just realized I’ve managed to make food a bit a centerpiece both in this post and during my days off. I suppose there could be worse things to tie a few lazy days together. Makes me wonder what Tuesday’s food celebrity will be (which since it’s officially a little after midnight, is actually today). Right now, my money’s on scrambled eggs.
Whether you’re working or have the day off – find something tasty to munch on during your travels!