Saturday, September 2, 2006

Stream of Consciousness on the Edge of Exhaustion

What does one write when one has only a few free hours a week? When there are so many other things one should or could be doing, like dealing with a week’s accumulation of animal hair all over the house…or applying oneself to actually creating a home-cooked, home-served meal…or taking the dog out for a few minutes of desperately longed-for one-on-one dog and mom time…or paying the bills…or pulling weeds…or planning and scheming and dreaming the future of the business…?

The café closes at 3 pm on Saturday. I only had to work a nine-hour day. I was not a completely exhausted basket case by the time I got out of there today. I felt like I’d had the day off. Tomorrow, I don’t even have to work open to close. Ahhhh….another almost day off coming up.

The husband is currently ensconced in the only air-conditioned space we own—our travel trailer—trying to redeem a few of the million hours of sleep he has lost in the last two months…

Two months. We’ve been full-fledged entrepreneurs for two months. Since July 1, 2006. Two months have gone by. And, as is the way with time once you have passed the half-century mark, these two months have at once seemed like an eternity and the wink of an eye.

It’s September already, for god’s sake. And I seem to have missed the summer. (I always do the "where has the time gone" thing in September; but this year, moreso than usual.)

I think the problem is that summer is not as long as any of us who live very far north or south of the equator would like it to be. Think about it. Twelve short weeks. And here in Oregon, the first six weeks are wasted trying to shake off the rainy season that lasts half the year or more.

So we have about six weeks of summer. From maybe mid-July to the beginning of September. Before that, or after that, it could be summer…but it could just as easily revert to whichever season—spring or fall—precedes or follows. Which isn’t all bad, come to think of it. Here in the inland valleys of Oregon, spring and autumn are truly the longest and most beautiful seasons.

My drip irrigation-aided garden beds, planted in May before the insanity began, are thriving. The lawn looks like crap (because our sprinkler system gave up the ghost this year) …so the grass is brown and the only green accents are the tall spires of the weeds that haven’t been mowed since July. I can look outside and see the lush, thriving tangles of slightly wild beauty in my raised beds and container gardens. Nothing has been pinched back or deadheaded since d-day (July 1, 2006.) It’s wild and untamed and slightly weedy…but at least it’s green (in places…)

For those of you who remember the saga of the trees (from two years ago…): The volunteer poplars I have encouraged around my deck are now taller than I am. A little while more, and I shall have the tall, green, thriving screen I had when I moved into this house. Only this time, it will be mine…and I won’t have to worry about the neighbor cutting it down again.

I had so much more to write about…but I’ve run out of time. Time. Time to go feed the animals. And walk the dog. And do some laundry. And vacuum the furniture. And…and…and. Sigh!


  1. Hey, catch a breath or two either before or after the hair removal.  The housework will always, always wait for you.  I'm glad your trees are doing well.  I still remember those heartbreaking pictures.  Despite all your busy-ness, you sound amazingly peaceful in this entry.

  2. Ah Lisa, you can't do it all!  Don't lose sight of how much you wanted this cafe, this business to make your very own.  You had all the time in the world before this to do all the things you lament over not having time for now.  For heaven's sake, you're only one woman with two hands (I assume) and there are only so many hours in a day.  I swear there seems to be less of them but that's an "over fifty" perspective which I definitely have.  Don't forget that having all that time on your hands to "do" these things you list wasn't bringing you much joy and happiness in the months, years prior to your wonder and excitement at taking on this new adventure.  Pace yourself.

  3. Always nice to stop by your journal.  Yes how the summers do fly by!!  They are hot and short here, but the weather keeps going in Sept and Oct and we are lucky to cool down by November.  Would love to be in Oregon someday.  Sounds just beautiful.  Best wishes with the cafe!!  Hope ya get that to do list done and me too... sure does always seem to never end.  Hugs,

  4. Time... My yard looks like He** too! No time to take care of it.

  5. Ah, poplars.  I think I am remembering the right tree from my childhood long long ago and far far away.  Don't the leaves quake?  Lovely.
    Seems like all of your readers can relate wholeheartedly to this entry.  All of us have made the decision to read your writing when we could be doing so many other things, too.  Hear, hear to everything you HAVE accomplished in the past two months!  Get a perspective--you started your own restaurant, for God's sake!  You've inspired reflection and camraderie in all of us sharing your ups, downs, and thoughts.  Forget the weeds; even here in the desert the recent rains have brought elephant-eye crops of weeds, ditto all over the country.  Only those with no life are out there hacking.  We're all short of time, but the time I take to stop by Coming to Terms are the best use of time I can think of.

  6. There's a poplar plantation on the way to work. It's really cool to see them when the wind is blowing. They're all silvery and green.


  7. My house and yard are a shambles and I have nothing to attribute it to except apathy.  I know it must be overwhelming for you sometimes but you are living your dream.

    I hope that you enjoyed a little time off over the weekend and went back refreshed.

  8. but.....but.....Are you happy?

    That is the real question my sweet friend.

    Fall is coming.


    Get out you platter.