More Face Time

Well. That was nice. I left the land of ones and zeros for a while, and made-do with face time.

I visited the D.J.s in my life. Son Zach is on the left (D.J. Veda), and his roomate, D.J. Martin, is behind him. John Ray (also a D.J.!) -- who came to visit from Santa Fe -- is on the right, with my husband, Jim standing behind him. Jim's the piano player in the family, a jazz man through and through. He's learning to appreciate these guys and their style -- their enthusiasm is infectious.

Sat at the counter chatting with daughter Hannah while she made batch after batch of muffins. She is smitten with smitten kitchen, and we are the willing beneficiaries of her experimentation and largess.

Face Time. Remember that? When we knew each other because we'd met in the flesh, had formed relationships side-by-side, and kept in touch via the telephone or snail mail when we were apart.

I'm glad to have my laptop, my internet access, my ways of touching base nowadays that go beyond snail mail and telephone, partly because I have phobias surrounding both, so the internet allows me to be much more social than I would normally be, and of course it allows me to conduct business on a level that wouldn't be otherwise possible.

But, I have felt sucked in lately. Some days, I look up and the day is gone and all I've done is stare at my computer, whether it's the work in progress I'm staring at, or administrivia, or research, or email or... it sucks up hours of my day. This is the way I've begun to live, and it's not good for me. I don't seem to be able to multi-task in a way that grants me pockets of time for everything, and so I have asked myself these questions: What can you let go of? What's important? What's most important?

How can I not have had time to scrub and cut some Yukon Gold potatoes, add in the last of the whites, and cook them with some freshly sliced organic cabbage and lots of cracked pepper (and a dash of cream) for a lovely winter soup?

This past three weeks, I found time. It snowed last week, and we sipped this soup, cozy, with our fire crackling. Then, the next day, I added tomatoes and red kale and curry and a tinge of red pepper. It was great. I didn't look at my computer for an entire day; I looked at the snow, and my family, and my friends.

In the time I wasn't catching up on my 262 facebook friends or twittering about my latest experience, I steamed spinach and made pie crust and started knitting a new scarf. I read. Imagine that. I took long, hot baths in the new, deep tub. The bathroom is almost finished. Beautiful photos of a beautiful new room here.

Also in the last couple of weeks, we hosted a potluck for a beloved friend and mentor who is retiring (early retirement, at age 86!). Talk about face time! (photos here) That's all there was, was face time. I adored every moment of this evening, and remembered what it was I had been missing -- craving. Time away from virtual visiting, and more time face-to-face.

So I'm going to do something about it. This "something" is a work in progress, but for now I'm going to abandon facebook and twitter (so much for that social experiment... but never say never, I may be back). I'm planning more face time, here at home, and away. I'm going on a trip. Two trips. Three. I'll tell you about them soon. I'm going to visit friends and family, to see them, face-to-face. Along the way, I'm going to do the ALL-STARS two-step. It's all very, very good.

AND... I'm going to write another novel. I'll be sitting in front of my computer as I do that. I'll be checking email (and glad to have that connection, so please don't quit writing me), I'll be researching on the internet, I'll be staying in touch here at One Pom. I'll just be structuring my life for more face time. It does me good. It grounds me. It brings me home.