Saturday, May 30, 2009

And a good time was had by all. 'specially me.

Okay, guys, I have just gotten through, truly, the suckiest week at work in a long time. I will not belabor the details; that's not the purpose of this post.

This is going to be a happy post, by gum.

At 5:00-ish yesterday evening, I almost literally limped to my car. I mean, we're talking down, ragged and defeated, despite the author of my pain taking a vacation day. My circadian rhythms make the hours between 5 and 7 pm the lowest point for me, energy-wise. I typically get up at 6 a.m. and for the next several hours am very ready, willing and able to do just about anything, especially when it comes to planning and organizing. But starting around 3:30 in the afternoon, the energy starts to wane seriously. Especially on Friday, and especially if it's been a tough week. A good example of this was yesterday -- made a detour to the restroom and stood in front of the wastebasket with a crumpled paper towel in one hand and my car keys in the other -- needing about three long seconds to sort out which one I was supposed to toss in. There are some evenings when I will walk in the door, say hi to Carl, kick off the shoes and most of the clothes, and just fall into bed and be deeply asleep within 2 minutes, waking up an hour or so later not having changed position. Then, of course, I stay up until the wee morning hours, but...

So, yesterday evening, I had to rush over to the church to catch the tail-end of an important meeting, and then a half hour later it was time to attend dinner at a friend's house. I had to slap together a time sheet, as I always do on Fridays, and would have gotten it started earlier, except for having to fill in on the company switchboard from 4-5. So it's rush-rush-rush, making up the time sheet, shutting down my computer, putting away all the paperwork and getting out of Dodge. In my quest to arrive promptly at the meeting, I took a shortcut along one of the most dismal, drug-ridden streets in the city. Such was my pessimistic frame of mind that I fully anticipated encountering a flat tire, fender-bender, carjacking, or improvised explosive device along one of those 4 blocks. Perhaps my emotional sun started to peek through the clouds as I turned onto the next street and left all that squalor behind.

The church meeting was not unpleasant, but it was a somewhat confused and talk-heavy affair, and having come in so late, there was little for me to contribute. I think everybody was fairly fatigued by the time we broke up at 6:00, but I didn't want to arrive too early at the dinner, which was located just blocks away. But there was no one to hang out and chat with, so I took the long route to my friend's. I'd never previously visited them before dark. Upon arriving, I discovered that they have ample parking space behind their house, making it unnecessary to scope out an appropriate spot at the curb. One of the other guests had arrived just before me; their smiling faces were a balm to the soul as we walked into the house together.

And so went the whole evening. My friend is a wonderful host, along with her husband, and a splendid cook. I've known her just over two years and feel enormously blessed by her friendship. She is a consummate night-owl. If you even try to make conversation with her before 11 a.m. or so, you'd be advised to record it, since she won't remember much of it later. So most of the time we spend together is on weekday evenings. She's walking on air, while my ass is dragging. I was genuinely worried about how I'd hold up for 3 hours' worth of leisurely dining and conversation with six other people.

But I needn't have worried. There was wine (oh, yesss!), salad, a roast, potatoes, squash, a marvelous dessert and coffee. A few auxiliary brain cells kicked in and I was able to converse intelligently about politics, religion and society in general. I indulged briefly in a recitation of the preceding week's miseries, but all of that suddenly, miraculously felt irrelevant.

After about three hours, the inevitable exhaustion reappeared and I was the first to get up and say goodnight. I'd seen one or two discreet glances at wristwatches before that and suspected that I'd provided an opportunity for the others. Six warm hugs and then it was a short, uneventful cruise back to my (thankfully) empty street and quiet abode.

An absolutely perfect end to a day that could have been worse, at the conclusion of a week that many of us thought would just drag on forever.

I'm hoping the momentum will carry me through this weekend and enable me to do something other than stare at the computer and take naps. And then Monday it's back to the battlefield ... freshly armored.

1 comment:

Barbara Bruederlin said...

It's those days when you are expecting the worst and end up having a glorious time that make it all worthwhile.