My Library Experiment, Week One
I’m trying something new this week. It seems a bit ridiculous to me as well as extreme, but if it works, I will love it. It is the second day that I’ve packed up my “stuff” and set up to write at the local library.
Home is just so cozy and delicious. Food and beverage, fireplace, books, garden, friends…not to mention countless, non-writing-related tasks to take care of. You know, like laundry.
So yesterday, I stuffed my laptop, a spiral notebook, and my writing day planner into a tote. But I wanted both water and coffee. I couldn't put those with my laptop. Does the library even allow coffee? I decided it wasn’t an option. I put both the travel mug and travel cup into my purse, along with a small square of chocolate. I knew I’d get hungry, but I was already running late.
I’ve not spent much time at this fairly new, extremely efficient neighborhood library. It’s about five minutes from our house in low traffic. I had to ask a few questions before finding the study area. It was SO QUIET! I might not speak loudly, but I am otherwise impressively noisy. Everything I did seemed to echo – unzipping my bag, setting my beverages on the table, arranging my laptop and its charger. I even peeked around wondering if a librarian would approach and ask me to please settle down.
And the librarians! The ones in this little library are at least a couple decades younger than me. They patrol, put books away, and are frequently at their computers. What are they all doing, I wonder? Some research, sure, but what else? Hmm? It fascinates me. I’ve always thought I would enjoy being a librarian. Much as I love the outdoors, I find great libraries, churches, and museums restorative in a different sort of way.
Of course, I felt hungry early on. I ate my one chocolate in the first hour, drank my coffee, sipped some water, and well, after all that, I had to take a little break. Once I was in front of my computer again, I put my head down and worked for almost three hours. Then a new noise disrupted the quiet. My stomach began growling.
I tried to ignore it and worked for another 45 minutes. But I was distracted. My daughter-in-heart had given us some of her fabulous chicken tacos the night before and I knew there was still one waiting for me at home. On my way out of the library, I stopped by the front desk, interrupting the young librarian.
“Can we…we’re not allowed to eat in here, are we?”
What did I expect her to say? I knew the answer.
She looked apologetic. “Not inside, but we have a little courtyard outside with seating.”
Today, I wanted to bring a peanut butter sandwich but again ran out of time. I have another chocolate square, a Kind bar, and a banana stuffed in my purse. I do not doubt that I will make an inordinate amount of noise unwrapping the sticky Kind bar. They'll probably throw me out. I wonder if I can eat a banana in here without anyone noticing? If I didn’t like the windows so much, I’d sit in a cubby. Surely no one would catch me there!
But some writing will get done. Some, as you see, already has. :)
Here's to a week of productivity and more!
What Comfort Zone?
I don't have a bucket list, per se, and I do NOT approve of skydiving. I get it. It's safer than driving, yada yada, and you're going to do it whether I approve or not. None of that means I have to like it when you jump out of a plane.
I'd always thought to go hang-gliding, though. It never struck me as particularly dangerous and enjoying an eagle's eye view of the mountains I love held great appeal. So when Joseph announced that we should go paragliding in Turkey, it wasn't in me to seriously object.
And there is that something about challenging yourself to do something at least a teensy bit out of your comfort zone.
It was a cool, cloudy, November day in Oludeniz when we went, and we had to wait for the clouds to disperse a little. We trusted Birsen and Kerem, our guys from FlyLiberty, so we weren't worried. And oh, it was so much fun!
I admit, as we drove to the top of the mountain (thousands of feet), I began to feel a little anxious. We just kept going -- up, up, up -- and I'm a little uncomfortable with heights. I joked that I would just stay in the van. I believed I was voicing more concern than I felt in order to amuse the others. In retrospect, looking at the photos, I probably was as nervous as I thought I was pretending to be. I'm holding on tight and don't look that comfortable. As to that, I wasn't comfortable! My coat was bothering the heck out of me. Next time -- and we hope to go again soon -- I won't wear a coat or anything so constricting. Or sunglasses! Kerem insisted I wear his, but I don't think I needed them, especially on a cloudy day. But I digress. In short, Joseph looks relaxed and competent in his photos. Born to it. Me, not so much.
Despite that vain displeasure, I found it a refreshing experience. Does that sound odd? For one thing, it's fun. And then, there you are, high above the forest and sea, a sure, cool breeze blowing... Everyone has asked me how it feels to jump down or jump off the top of a mountain. I don't feel that I did. We backed up, ran a little, and jumped -- up. I never experienced a feeling of falling. Kerem skillfully maneuvered the parachute and the wind took us! It was smooth sailing with spectacular scenery. Eventually, we glided gently to the ground.
Would you prefer something less soothing, more exciting? The experience is, of course, tailored to the customer. I expressed anxiety and, I realize now, was clearly nervous, so Kerem took it easy. But they do stunts and loops and all sorts of things if you're up for it. Maybe next time.
I'm really glad that we did it. It was a fun experience to share with my sweetheart. He didn't rub it in that I was the poster child for awkward and afterwards we celebrated with a beautiful dinner in Fethiye.
Many thanks to everyone at FlyLiberty. Oludeniz, I look forward to seeing you again!
Happy New Year!
Before diving into the new, it's not a bad idea to review the last. I'm not saying to dwell on the past, but to just take stock, make notes, cry a few tears if needs must, and hopefully enjoy a few smiles.
Last year, our house was hit hard by the historic deep freeze and subsequent bursting of pipes. But it also got renovated and we love the improvements. And during the renovation period, we enjoyed bonus time with our children and grandchildren.
There were a few other things that didn't go our way, to say nothing of the precarious world situation and politics. We had cause to worry about some of our loved ones -- still do -- particularly my beloved, elderly father-in-law. But there's a beautiful new baby in our extended family, and we are more grateful than we could ever express that everyone made it through the year without serious illness.
Travel was limited, but we did get away. New Mexico's mountains were beautiful last summer. We visited Turkey's Mediterranean coast and paraglided in Oludeniz.
We watched our grandson play baseball. We saw our granddaughter bloom as a young artist.
I signed a contract with The Wild Rose Press.
For me, looking back has reminded me that things can change very fast and made me realize that last year wasn't all bad. Not at all.
So, what of this year? I have so many ideas! Remember that I said some things didn't go our way? Einstein's quote has lodged itself into my imagination.
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
I've resolved to do things differently this year. I always make resolutions and review at the end of the year. I didn't do badly last year, but my resolutions were too broad for them to be truly effective.
This year, they're more specific.
I'd like to mention one because I think you will be interested. I hope to read at least 12 self-development books and share about them with you.
I wasn't going to sign up for any reading challenge but Goodreads. I weakened and signed up for Cruisin' the Cozies again because that was just fun and I'd like to read 40 more cozies this year. As for my Goodreads' Challenge, my goal is 130 books. That's approximately two and a half books a week. I hope to more than meet that goal. Working with that number, I've created my own subdivisions, one being 12 self-development/personal growth books. I'm excited!
In the few quiet times during the last days of December, I listened to Deepak Chopra's The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success. I liked it so much that I want to study it further, memorize a bit, so I've ordered a hard copy. This week, I will be reading that and listening to Oliver Burkeman's Four Thousand Weeks, Time Management for Mortals. I will review, update, and generally keep you posted.
I have a new day planner and wall calendar. I trust them more than my phone app, although it certainly has its uses. I have new hopes and plans and dreams.
Is there anything that you'd like to share?
All the best in 2022!
A Little of This, a Little of That
Keep me away from the wisdom that does not cry, the philosophy that does not laugh, and the greatness which does not bow before children. – Gibran Khalil Gibran
From me to you with a smile.
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