Morning, friends. Another new week – it has to be better than last week, right? These are awful times that we are living through right now, and I am privileged enough that for me the awfulness is just in the watching, and not in the living. The senseless murder – because it was murder – of George Floyd is sitting heavily on my heart, as it is on many hearts. Reading about his cry of “Mama!” brought me to tears, as someone who answers to that name. And coming so soon after my running community mourned Ahmaud Arbery, I just don’t know what to say anymore. I often find myself without words after these horrible crimes – not because I don’t care, but because I worry that my voice won’t add anything to the conversation and will ring hollow to people who are actually suffering, or that posting to a hashtag will come across as lip service and nothing more. But that’s clearly not good enough, so I am trying to come up with words. I’ve checked in on my friends who are people of color and let them know that I am here if they ever need me. I’ve arranged another FaceTime play date for Peanut and her BFF, who is biracial. And I’ve downloaded anti-racist reading lists, which include quite a few books I’ve already read but plenty more ideas, and donated to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. (Here’s the donation page, in case you want to make a contribution too.)
Anyway, with that – I do try to keep politics and justice issues out of my writing here, not because it’s not important to me but because I like having this space as an escape. So. The hideousness of the world last week aside, how are you all holding up in week eleventy-seven bajillion of the age of corona? We had kind of a rough week, even setting the state of the world aside, last week. Nugget had not one, but two spills on the bike path: one when he and his sister were clowning around and she ended up plowing into him and knocking him over during a morning walk, and one when our bikes got tangled up together on Saturday morning. (I took the brunt of that one, of course, and my hands look pretty bad right now.) And the kids were sort of at cross-purposes all week; a lot of bickering between the two of them, and defiance directed at Steve and me if we had the audacity to say things like “Turn off the TV” or “Wash your hands, it’s dinnertime.” At least the weather is good?
Reading. Most of the week was pretty slow, at least as far as books were concerned. (I read a lot of news coverage and opinion pieces, though.) After finishing Austentatious, I tried to pick up The Heat of the Day, by Elizabeth Bowen – the last book off my library stack. I got about a chapter and a half into it, and I can tell that it’s beautifully written and is going to be wonderful, but I also can’t seem to motivate myself to pick it up. Instead of reading, I spent most of the week puttering around the house and scrolling on my phone – not at all satisfying, but my brain just didn’t want a book. On Sunday, I had a sudden desire to dive back into the Lumberjanes world. (A bunch of hardcore lady types solving anagrams, battling mythical monsters, and shouting out exclamations like “Holy Mae Jemison!” seemed like exactly what I needed.) I ended up spending a chunk of the day with my face buried in the first three volumes, and I feel more excited to read than I have in weeks. So that’s something.
Watching. As with any light reading week, it was a heavy watching week. We did a lot of family TV watching – including several episodes of Rock the Park, the penultimate Be Our Chef, and Ratatouille (twice). Steve and I also watched two episodes of The Crown (we’re way behind, so no one tell me what happens in season three, okay?) and I spent an evening zoning out to the Pure Adirondacks channel on YouTube.
Listening. Back on podcasts while running – I listened to two-and-a-half episodes of Another Mother Runner (on the future of races in the age of corona, tips for trail running, and long run routines). The episode on the changes that are coming to racing was especially interesting, since I’m hoping to stick my toe back in the local race scene starting in the fall.
Making. Not much this week, in keeping with a week in which I felt paralyzed by the state of the world and out of sorts by the state of my house. I stayed up late baking bread on Saturday night, but I think that’s the only thing I really made this week – a few dinners aside. Not much creativity around here at the moment.
Moving. On the other hand, it was a pretty good week on the moving front. I got in three runs during the week and a hike on the Patowmack Trail at Great Falls Park on Sunday. Skipped a few workouts toward the end of the week, because I had another virtual 5K and I wanted to take some time off my last one, so I needed fresh legs. I did skim off about a minute – not as much as I wanted to, but every step counts. Aside from running, I didn’t do much; this week my goal is to get in at least two strength training sessions in addition to running. I’m beginning to cautiously think about some goals for the fall and beyond, which feels good.
Blogging. Going to be a fun week around here! I have my May book list for you on Wednesday (sadly, it’s on the shorter side – especially for such a long month – since most of the month was a full-blown reading slump) and a post about quarantine silver lines on Friday. Check in with me then!
Loving. As the weather has gotten better and it’s turning into full summer here, I’ve been enjoying my outdoor spaces. I hate going inside when it’s nice out, but with social distancing we are trying not to leave the house more than once a day. So I’ve been spending a lot of time on my back patio and my front porch. The chairs on my porch were pretty grimy after the winter, and I spent some time cleaning them up thoroughly – and now they’re my favorites (again). I’ve been sitting out there with a bottle of water and (sometimes) a book, breathing the outside air, watching the birds and waving to my neighbors, and it’s been so refreshing.
Asking. What are you reading this week?