…has been busy. I’d say for the first time in 12 years I have successfully worked the scheduling system at work and gotten the best schedule ever. Sure, it’s on our new sh***y 757 to Europe; however, I am working 3 day on – 4 days off, same days every week (regularity, wow!) and I get to finally go see my friends in Brussels. Considering that I am the only person under 20 years seniority on the flight, I clearly got an enviable schedule. So it’s just as shocking that I got my 2nd choice of work position on the plane. It hardly gets any better! I can only assume that I held this schedule because it touched Labour Day weekend, but I was (for once) clever enough to request a week’s leave in advance for that weekend, so I didn’t have to work that trip. It all makes it worth working that awful plane. (Then again, ask me at the end of the month!)
For said Labour Day weekend, my family all went up to the Finger Lakes, where my grandparents had a farm for my whole childhood. This is perhaps the most sacred place to me in the world, and one of my vacation favorites – right up there with Istanbul and Montreal. We had to sell the farm in 1996 and the only other time we’ve been up there is in 2004 to take my grandparents’ ashes to their graves. So – this was a really special treat of a Labour Day and I think we’ve reignited a tradition, complete with the owner of our old farm being hospitable enough to welcome us when we descend on his property hoping to have a nostalgic look around, taking photos of every little corner that reminds us of our many summers there. (He even offered – several times – for us to stay in the guest house next year when we return. How nice!) I feel very lucky that we sold it to a hospitable and empathetic man who is also a seeming restoration enthusiast (so, although he’s making changes, he’s taking loving care of the place). As usual, I’ll get around to putting some photos of Flickr later this week.
I also learned about the advantages of tennis shoes (or trainers, as the Brits call them, which really is a more sensible name for once). I have a new favorite workout, and that is the Masala Bhangra class at my gym. You know, Indian style dance…it’s a ton of fun and an intense workout (at least arranged as an aerobic class routine as this is). This weekend I went barefoot. Just to try it. I’ve seen the instructor do it, and after all, real Masala Bhangra is done barefoot. And going barefoot is in general supposed to be so good for you. So there I went, slipping of my flip-flops in the gym, noticing that 4 of 5 other girls followed my lead and removed their own trainers about 10 minutes into the class. But I wonder if they also regret it, as do I.
I loved it during the workout, but 1) the floors aren’t that clean, which is uncomfortable if you get a gathering of dust from the hardwood floor on the ball of your foot and 2) the class routine involves lots of superfast (double time), jumping-jack style jumps both side-to-side and back-and-forth. This is, I can tell you, rather hard on your little tootsies as they get your weight and the friction on the floor necessary for stopping your movement on the contact end of each jump. I now have bruises on many toes, most notably the ball of my big toes-a big deep yucky bruise that makes it necessary to walk the house in both socks and slippers to cushion the area. I didn’t even know that was possible. It’s very hard to bruise the bottom of your toe! And thank goodness because it’s really uncomfortable. So – I’ve done it for you. You don’t have to. Wear gym shoes to the gym – that’s the moral.
Back in a few days to share about Del’s birthday and the surprise “party” that Del helped me plan for himself.