Perhaps the best decision I’ve made lately has been to change my train reservation such that I can spend an additional four days visiting my husband and Maine. This morning — when I would otherwise have been on a train to D.C. — I am sitting in the cottage with the woodstove going to take the chill off the sea air, as the sun warms things up outside, with a Tony’s donut and cup of coffee close at hand, MPBN on the radio, and the memory of a morning walk along the beach putting a smile on my face. Soon I will run a hot bath to complete my island morning routine. And then get to the day’s work, which includes writing, a meeting, and a job app. On the enjoyment front: a couple of walks through the autumnal woods or along the shore on this clear day, a stack of newspapers I need to read before adding them to the stock of woodstove fuel, and presumably more novel-reading, one of the chief pleasures of the post-dissertation world. I’m rediscovering a lot of those.
Up here, the past few nights have been clear as a bell, and the stars have been incredible. On after-dinner walks to the back shore, Jupiter has been hanging above the bay. It is amazing that, so close to Portland, the sky can be as brilliant as in the middle of the Adirondacks. But I suppose I should not be so surprised. Life up here tends to be perfect like that.
You may wonder about the Maine earthquake that hit a couple nights ago, and was the main topic of conversation among the early morning crowd at Becky’s diner yesterday. I can’t say we felt it, or knew we were feeling it: that probably says more about the usual movements of our little basementless house, and the fact that at the time it was filled with us and five guests, including two children, so between the piano-playing, recorder-blowing, and general running-around, a tremor would not have been remarkable.