Saturday, December 15, 2007

Some good energy for you...dipped in vigor and rolled in vim

Mrs. Sundberg's weekly epistle:

.....I'm catching my breath at the moment. Last week was busy and this week is even more so, but I've been managing just fine. Seems every year about this time I get an energy going that carries me right on into the New Year. It's not a burst of energy, really, and it certainly isn't fleeting. It's as if, early in December, something washes over me, as if I've been dipped in vigor and rolled in vim, and I can't for the life of me fall asleep before midnight.

There's more to it, though, than energy. I seem to have been given another sense. A sixth level of awareness that makes a trip to the grocery store or a visit with a friend more of an adventure or more of a joy than it usually is. I get hungrier and chocolate tastes better and the sky at night is so dang clear. Mr. Sundberg seems funnier than usual, and the kids, well, the kids are both a bit sweeter and a tad less tolerable. Housecleaning goes faster and, frankly, I could bake all night. I look forward to wrapping gifts and the kids coming home from school. I enjoyed, immensely, every moment of the Christmas Program. Good energy, it is, in the darkest of the dark months.

Thing is, just about everything is temporary. Goldfish, anger, caffeine withdrawal and parties. Toothaches, free time, and therapy. Poison ivy, and kissing on Sunday afternoons. Good or bad, there's not much that keeps on going. This is a blessing when it comes to rabies shots, but when it's baking at midnight you're talking about, well, load up on the flour and make sure you've got some eggs. Mr. Frost said it best in his loveliest poem, "Nothing gold can stay." And there you have it, my dear hearts. Tomorrow you may not. So take it all in as best you can, and never a moment regret........

and Russ about the weather:

In uncommon quickness the landscape and population morphed in unison into the season. The real estate became a soft white and we the people put on four inches of foam-filled girth and big feet and became gnomes under the hoods and caps and the scarves. Problems associated with partial exposure of the glutei maximi and of loud music from open car windows are gone. Very little skin is visible on anyone and windows of any kind are all shut. Most of the loitering in the state has moved indoors to small scattered shacks and it's called 'ice fishing,' and it's a big industry.

and how we talk around here:

The other morning in a cafe in New Richmond, just across the river in Wisconsin from us, a local farmer was standing talking to some other codgers there in the booth, saying, "No, I got rid of that manure spreader fifteen years ago, and I got rid of the Chalmers a couple years after that." A man asked if he still had the horses then and he said, "I kept 'em a lot longer 'n I needed 'em, but I finally got rid of 'em two summers ago."

I've never made peace with the phrase 'got rid of.' The push-pull of it scrapes on my ear even after all these decades of common use, somehow vaguely seeming to be bad English. It wants to translate into 'I came into possession of their absence two years ago.' It's generally expressed as a positive — whatever it was, it was a good thing to acquire its departure. Sometimes even better than the original obtaining of its presence, as in a case of the flu.

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