Saturday Morning Unexpected Visitors

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Saturday morning is the day I lie in. This Saturday morning I’d received two visitors before 9 a.m.

The first slunk in unnoticed. He drove his van up the drive and left his calling card in full view by the front door. I discovered this at 6.45 a.m . when I got up to make coffee to take back to bed and unlock the front door in case our son dropped by on his early morning run.

The surprise delivery sat there, delivered by the courier man in darkness without any fuss, a carton of 14 bottles of wine ordered from the Wine Society two nights before. I never considered how much 14 bottles of wine weighed before. I struggled inside, wishing I had octopus  arms, hoping I wouldn’t let the contents fall with a smash to the floor.

There was nothing discreet about this delivery. The carton had New Zealand Wine Society and Passionate about Wine printed on the outside.  No doubt the courier driver realised I must be too by ordering so many bottles. But it was a bargain I couldn’t resist and my wine supply needed replenishing.

The second visitor arrived right on the dot of nine. My husband, dressed, was watching TV. I, still dressed in my dressing gown tied with an old purple scarf and with a head of unbrushed hair, sat on the couch reading from my new Kindle. Anyone coming to the front door peers straight into our lounge, so hiding isn’t an option. We can be seen before we see the visitor.

This early visitor was a friend, who’d offered me a pumpkin she had no need for. Its winter here in NZ and she’d kindly braved the cold, wet  morning to drop it off for me on her way to the local market. I was mortified at the sight I presented as I went to the door. It’s a wonder she didn’t drop the pumpkin and run in fright!

After her departure  and I’d recovered from my embarrassment I started laughing. Thank heavens the wine wasn’t still on the doorstep. Thank heavens I was at least out of bed, even if not properly  dressed. Thank goodness last night’s dishes weren’t still on the bench as they sometimes can be Saturday morning.

Quite respectable for me at nine on a Saturday morning I thought.

Have you ever been embarrassed by unexpected visitors? Why not share your embarrassment with us. I need to know I’m not the only Saturday slob in the world.

Saturday Morning Journal Writing

It’s Saturday morning again and the first day of winter here in New Zealand. Mind you, winter didn’t wait this year, but slammed us a week early. Our summer was long and hot and I have a funny feeling winter is going to long and cold.

I awoke early, probably because I told myself I’d sleep in this morning. Things never work out as I plan at the weekend. When I realised I wasn’t going to get back to sleep I started reading, re-reading actually as I chose to read Natalie Goldberg’s ‘Writing Down the Bones’, from the beginning.

As always happen, whenever I pick up this book, I get as far as when Natalie tells her readers:

“Sit down right now. Give me this moment. Write whatever’s running through you. You might start with “this moment” and end up writing about the gardenia you wore at your wedding seven years ago. That’s fine. Don’t try to control it. Stay present with whatever comes up, and keep your hand moving. “ Goldberg, Natalie (2010-08-31). Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within

And, so I did. I sat down and started writing. Here, in more or less unabridged form, part of the thoughts that flowed through my pencil onto the page of my journal.

There’s so much writing running through my head, chaotic, disorganised, like the wild flow of a river in flood. I have no idea how to tame the wild natural force of a river. Like the river my writing needs to rush onward toward its destination – not the sea, but a recognisable chunk to be added to my work in progress.

Yesterday I completed the piece on the pine grove I’ve been working on. It’s not quite as long as I  hoped for, but I’m pleased with the finished product. I felt immense satisfaction from feeling I’d grown a little as a writer.

Sometimes giving yourself permission to simply write thoughts in a journal leads to other pieces of writing. I had no idea where I was going with this. However, the writing picked up on threads I’ve been thinking about lately, writing about my local river in different contexts, as preparation for a small piece that will eventually sort itself from the chaos and appear in my work in progress.

Natalie Goldberg tells us to keep practicing writing and that is what I do. Every now and then something of greater importance emerges. But, right now I’m still gathering facts and stories and mapping out the direction my new work will take.

How about you? Do you follow Natalie’s advice and practise writing every day, warming up by just writing before you get on with the serious stuff? Do you find the thoughts written randomly written in your journal take you places you hadn’t previously thought of going?

Relaxed on Saturday Morning

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This seems to be coming a habit, writing about Saturday morning. I’ve greeted the world a little later than usual and there’s no rush to make choices about the order things get done. I’m practised at ignoring the breakfast dishes in the sink and the weekly attempt at housework – how can two people and a cat make so much mess? Blame the cat I say.

Anyway, I had a little blog piece all ready to be written, a sensible little piece calling for attention when I went to bed last night. I came to the computer with my scribblings in my notebook and my coffee in my hand, ready to read the latest posts in my Reader.

This morning’s offerings are really Friday nights for most of you, as I’m writing this tucked away in the distant land of New Zealand. Obviously bloggers are in a relaxed mood as they pound away at the keys on Friday night, fuelled by the freedom of the weekend ahead. I started smiling and chuckling, until outright laughter escaped into the morning. A few new – to me – bloggers captured my attention this week. I’m discovering clever and funny people waiting to entertain me.

Outside the day is grey and wet, a good day for staying inside writing and ignoring housework while I read the funny stories written by others. But, now I realise I have a problem. How could I possibly contemplate serious stuff on a Saturday morning?

Saturday needs to be light-hearted and today several good role models demonstrate how to let the humour flow. I’ve told myself, stop being so serious girl, relax, laugh at yourself a bit more. Maybe that’s the secret to successful blog posts, the ability to laugh at one self and be more entertaining. I’m going to need a bit of practice to get that skill flowing freely.

Meanwhile, the serious piece can wait until a more suitable time. I’m going to approach Saturday as it deserves – relaxed and with a smile on my face, thanks to the entertaining blog posts I read over coffee. First though, I need to go pour another coffee.

The Best Thing About Saturday Morning

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The thing I like most about Saturday mornings is the silence. The birds still sing in the tree outside the window. The traffic still rushes down the street, as if this was just an ordinary day. What I don’t hear is the telephone ringing at some horrendous hour of the morning. This is a welcome break from my weekday life.

My morning routine on waking is monotonously consistent. When awareness of the living world nudges me, my eyes remain closed and I try to estimate the time by listening to the passing traffic out in the still dark morning. Next one eye opens and peers cautiously at the clock. Dare I doze off again, or is phone call time dangerously close?  On more rebellious days I pretend the phone won’t ring and snuggle down again, hopeful I’ll have half an hour longer in bed.

That’s when the phone rings loudest, when I’m almost back to sleep, forgetting it’s a weekday morning. The shrill noise penetrates the whole room as I fumble in the dark for the light and the phone, knowing the busy but fun day I’d planned will be put on hold.

You see, I’m a day relief teacher and, although much of my work is booked ahead of time, early morning calls from a school when a teacher calls in sick come when least expected.

Saturday mornings are different. The phone remains silent beside the bed, knowing its safe from the crazy fumbling of a half wakened lady. The phone is safe from being sent flying onto the floor as my extended hand misses its mark in the dark. My half-awake appearance at that time of morning won’t startle the phone, causing it to recoil and switch off.

Saturday is one of my two days off, a welcome break from early morning calls. For today my slumber time is safe.

Saturday Morning at the Bottom of the World

Some of you may not be aware of this, but New Zealand is the first country in the world to see the light of a new day, not only a new day but also a new month and a new year. We made a big thing of this way back at the turn of the century when we were the first to welcome the new millennium.

This difference became apparent when I started blogging just a couple of short months ago. Many of you will be relaxing on Friday night as you read this, knowing the weekend lies ahead. I’m sitting here on Saturday morning, looking at the dishes on the bench demanding attention and the vacuum cleaner trying to throw itself into my hands. I refuse to let my thoughts dwell on all the regular weekend chores. The only problem with starting the weekend ahead of the rest of the world is Monday come around more quickly as well. So those of you in the northern hemisphere can sit back on Sunday night and spare me a thought as I trundle off to face my working week.

This is my time, when I make myself a cup of coffee and treat myself to personal time, before my conscience takes over and insists I get on with real life. This is my time to read my favourite blogs. Many blogs have captured my attention since I started writing here. This is my time to be inspired by the words of writers I’ve come to admire. The rest of the weekend can wait.

There’s another difference I have with bloggers in the rest of the world, I stare out my window at an autumn world. The sky is grey today and a light, drizzling rain is falling. This rain is welcome here in New Zealand, as we’ve had the hottest, driest summer in many years. The morning is warm and as I write the clouds are starting to part, letting a little blue sky peep through.

If the world could be frozen at any one point in time, what a fascinating array of situations we’d be greeted with as people go about their daily lives. Fortunately the world doesn’t stand still and we go about our lives wherever we are. I’ve developed a new fascination, that of making contact with people in different parts of the world experiencing different time frames from my own. Isn’t the internet wonderful?