Thursday, October 10, 2013

My Ideal Day

I wake at 5:30, refreshed and energetic after a restful night's sleep, full of good dreams. I go out on the back porch, where I sit among the trees and flowers and watch the sun rise, my mind empty. As soon as the sun is well up, I take a brisk nature walk among the junipers. I have a nice breakfast of coffee, croissants, and jam while reading the paper (fortunately the news is all good today) and dashing off the crossword.


After my leisurely breakfast, I sit down at the computer and write. The words cascade onto the page, each one a gem. In three hours I have ten pages of pure gold that will require very little editing. My husband and I head out for our favorite bistro where we have a light lunch, after which we stroll over to the independent bookstore and spend an hour or so browsing. We make a quick stop at Trader Joe's or Whole Foods and pick up a few fresh items for supper.

When we get home, I'm bursting with ideas again, so I head back into den and write for another couple of hours. It's hard for me to stop when suppertime rolls around, but my husband has whipped up quite a gourmet feast for us I quit writing in the middle of a sentence so I can take up right where I left off tomorrow. Don and I laugh and chat through supper, then after cleaning up, we sit together on the couch and watch a '40s noir movie. I take a shower, then read in bed for a while until I fall into a restful sleep, looking forward to tomorrow.

My Actual Day

I stayed up too late last night reading. Didn't get to sleep until nearly two, then I had anxious dreams and kept waking up off and on. Couldn't drag myself out of bed until 9:30. I get dressed and sit at the dining room table, staring into space like a zombie for fifteen minutes. Don has gone to the gym. I run out to Subway and bring home a sandwich. Eat it over the newspaper, spend way too long messing with the puzzles.

I need to write. But if I don't do a wash we'll have to run around naked tomorrow. While the wash is running, I dust and run the sweeper. I need to put away the dishes I washed last night. I hang the clothes and run another two loads. I need to throw the bathroom rugs in the washer, which means I'll have to mop the bathroom floors. I'll be danged if I'm going to put clean rugs on an unmopped floor.

I finally sit down at the computer, where I make the fatal mistake of looking at my email. I spend the next 45 minutes answering my email and looking at Facebook. Then I finally start to work on the guest blog entry I promised so-and-so last month. I have to get it in to her THIS WEEK. Oh, and this is my Type M week, too. I've put off answering the note my sister sent me, and then there's the thing I said I'd do for the women's club.

Can it already be 5:00? I have no idea what to do about supper. I ask Don if he has any ideas, but he'll eat anything I come up with. I root around in the cabinets. If I had a can of hominy I could make up a quick posole. I need to go to the store. We go to the store together and diddle around up and down the aisles until it's too late to make anything. We bring something home from the deli and eat it in the living room while watching The Big Bang Theory. Don went to the library today and came home with DVDs of Kerry Greenwoods' Phryne Fisher series from Acorn TV. After doing the dishes, we spend the rest of the evening watching that. It's great.

Can it already be 10:00? I watch ten minutes of the news, but it's so upsetting I go take a shower. When I get out, Tom Hanks is on Letterman, so I end up watching him until 11:15 blinking o'clock. I go to bed with a book, resolved I'll turn out the light at midnight without fail. It's 1:30 when I rip myself away from the story. I'm all wound up and can't go to sleep.

I'll never make it up at a reasonable hour in the morning.

At least I no longer have to get up at 6:00 and go to work from 8:00 to 5:00, then try to have a reasonable relationship with my family crammed in in the evenings AND write a book/story/poem whenever I can cram in a minute. How did I once do that? (I'll tell you how. All that mopping and cleaning would have gone by the by) I'm amazed at how tasks expand to fill the available time.

For the umpteenth time, I resolve to do better.

3 comments:

Irene Bennett Brown said...


Donis, as always your post is an absolute gem! I may have said it before but I think this often: your posts should be collected in a book for readers who want to know about the life of a writer, and be wonderfully entertained at the same time.

Donis Casey said...

Why, thank you, Irene! From your typing fingers to God's ears

Charlotte Hinger said...

Yes!!! I agree with Irene. And you've hit me where it hurts.