the shipping news

Another week; they flicker past. The big trade show of the year tired me out so much that I would come home and lie down on my bed for an hour after work. The first day I didn’t do that, the girls were surprised. A coworker said today he never thought of me as the sort of person who worried about client meetings. I said “Ever asked yourself why I do three hours prep for every hour face to face?”

Claire has a new violin. The school is giving lessons, free, so we rented this half-sized instrument from a place on Market. It’s adorable. I want to learn myself. The feel of the bow across the string is tantalizing.

Speaking of, Bella has a sore foot and I have been riding Jackson. He’s a big sour old Thoroughbred, scary sometimes to watch because of his repertoire of evasions. But when I ride him with my best self, I can get him forward and soft. I can only get it for a minute or so at a time: hence, tantalizing. I want to stretch out the nice moments so they get longer and longer. The trainers talk about the feeling of being “on rails”, when the horse’s hind legs are pushing along a straight line and the reins feel like train tracks and everything feels preordained. I’ve had that a couple of times on Bells, and now I can get it a little on Jacks. It’s quite a feeling to ride this huge horse over fences, fearless. Lopity lope.

When I get off him, it’s another six inches or something before I land, versus getting off little Bella. My eyes are probably sixteen hands or so off the ground, but his wither is above the top of my head. He’s vast and gentle.

I’ve been intermittently organizing around the house and I made my folding desk into a proper workplace for myself, with paints and sketchbooks and pens and pencils, so that even if I only have half an hour I can make a sketch or a watercolor. On Labor Day Monday I was in a bad mood for various reasons, but I did a painting and it helped me to feel better. I am completely amateurish, which is the point: I am letting myself learn to fail more. Julia loves to paint with me. Claire likes it but is also enjoying her piano. We’re the Austen sisters around here, I tell you what.

Speaking of, Claire has mastered the rice cooker and the kettle, and tonight’s stir fry with chicken, broccoli, green beans and carrots was mostly her work. She taught Julia to make the rice. Claire likes to bring me cups of tea, and has been offering to make me gins and tonic as well. Kid knows her mother.

Jeremy’s lovely but between his new startup gig and wushu, and my promotion and the horses, we sort of terrorist fist-bump in passing. But he did get a haircut and is looking totally awesome. I wonder if he would go out with me.

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