Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Happy Friday!  It is Friday, right?  It’s so hard to keep track these days.

The pandemic is still raging on in my corner of the world, so I am doing my part by staying home and wearing a mask for my rare outings to the grocery and on my evening walks.  Working from home no longer feels like a temporary change, which is probably all for the best since there is no suggestion that I’ll be heading back to the office any time soon.

I’ve spent this past week racing my way through Ngaio Marsh mysteries.  There are 32 all told and I am currently on number 31.  It has been interesting to read a series where the main character ages and time so clearly passes.  When the books start, the main detective is a single  young man and WWII hasn’t yet happened.  Now, at the end of the series, he has married, aged, and has a grown son.  WWII has come and gone and he’s advanced from an inspector to a superintendent.  It has been an enjoyable series and the stories I’ve enjoyed the most, romantic that I am, are the one where he meets his wife-to-be and the one where she agrees to marry him; dead bodies notwithstanding.

Staying at home has left me with additional time for reading, but I can’t say that my TBR pile has experienced any noticeable reduction in size.  Ah well, at least I’ll never suffer from the problem of having nothing to read.

For now, I’m going to finish up this series and then spend a little time working in the yard.  The climbing roses have gone overboard and appear to be attempting to take over the entire house.  Some judicious trimming back is in order.  Before that, however, I think I’ll give today’s writing prompt and random words at shot.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Welcome to the end of another week in what feels like the longest Twilight Zone episode ever.

Apparently whoever is authoring this episode thought that we were getting complacent and the stakes needed to be upped a bit.  As if those earlier murder hornets weren’t enough.  Now we have skyrocketing infections plus a new strain of H1N1 on the horizon.  A perfect time for my dentist appointment on Monday.

Nothing but good times ahead.

For now, we’re kicking off a holiday weekend here–celebrating our breakup with Mother England.  I’m sure everyone will wear their masks, wash their hands, and observe appropriate social distancing as the celebrate.

Oh, who am I kidding.

Well, I at least will do all three as I continue to shelter-in-place here in the Writing Castle, which now has a (mostly) working sprinkler system but is still lacking a repaired retaining wall.

To take my mind off reality and give myself something to do other than worry that one of the idiots shooting off illegal fireworks will set my hillside on fire, I think I’ll give today’s writing prompt and random words at shot.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Summer already?  How did that happen?

I don’t know about you, but time just seems to be slipping away for me.  Fortunately, despite my tenuous grasp on time, progress has been made on a few fronts this week.

I finally found someone to help repair my ailing sprinkler system.  It’s still not fully functional, but that broken valve that resulted in a water-gusher has been taken care of.  Even better, my neighbor finally hired someone to replace the retaining wall and fence that separates our yards so now his yard will stop sliding into mine and privacy has been restored.  All I had to do was write a check for my half.

Better yet, I was able to hire that same repairman to fix a small retaining wall on the other side of my property and to replace some decaying house-trim.  By this time next week, that will mean several of the major problems that had been on the “must take care of these” list for quite some time will finally be taken care of.  Next up: time to replace the disintegrating back deck.  Guess that means I’ll be taking a socially distant trip to the lumberyard this weekend to place an order for the necessary supplies.  Good times!

For now, however, I’m going to enjoy my first day off work in quite some time.  I’ll be spending at least part of the day at an online writing workshop.  It’s a small $25 test-drive to see just how well a virtual writing workshop can work, before I register for the longer conference that I mentioned a while back.  I’m sure the workshop will leave me bursting with creativity and ready to attack today’s writing prompt and random words.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Can you believe that 2020 is almost half over already?  I can hardly believe that another week is over already.  I guess it’s a good thing that I’m at home instead of being out and about.  The stores are probably already stocking up on Halloween costumes and candy, and nobody wants to see that.

My house has apparently gotten tired of having me around and seems to be plotting against me.  First it was the dishwasher.  Then the sprinkler system.  The refrigerator has been making an odd moaning noise that either means one of the belts is wearing out or I accidentally closed a ghost in there with the frozen foods.  Today the automatic garage door decided to get into the act, making it’s own odd noise that, if memory serves me correctly, means that the main spring is about to go at any minute.  Or maybe the garage was just annoyed that I left the house to buy groceries today.  Hard to tell.

I fixed the dishwasher–thanks to the help of a couple of YouTube videos–and I think I’ve finally found someone to come and take care of the multiple issues with the sprinkler system.  Now I just need to hear back from the garage door maintenance folks and all (except my bank account) should be on the road to recovery.  I’m ignoring the refrigerator noise for now and keeping my fingers crossed.

To take my mind of my plotting house, I think I’ll make a nice root beer float (wouldn’t want that ice cream to go to waste if the refrigerator goes out) and give today’s writing prompt and random words a try after work today.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Good heavens, I almost forgot it was Friday.

In my defense, I’ve been busily reading, working my way through the Ngaio Marsh mysteries (staring Inspector Roderick Alleyn).  One finally made its way to the top of my ToBeRead pile last week and once I finished it I dug around and found two more volumes further down the stack waiting to be read.   After that, it was (virtually) off to the local library for the eBook versions they had available.

Set in England and New Zealand in the 1940s, the stories are fairly short and the equivalent of fictional popcorn:  It’s hard to stop after just one.  I think I’m on about book sixteen and there look to be at least a dozen more to go.  I may lose interest before long, but for now they are distracting and entertaining.  Just what I’ve needed.

Of course there are many other things I should be doing, like writing or finishing an assignment due in about 24-hours for a class that I am taking, but for now I’m reading.

Once I’ve finished this current story (and maybe my homework), I’ll be giving today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Happy Friday.  Has it only been a week since last Friday?  It seems like it has been a lifetime.  To say we are living in interesting times would be a massive understatement.

Though there is a focus on what is going on in the broader society, our own personal lives need attention too.  There are meals to cook, dishes to wash, laundry to fold, not to mention a that day job that seems to want eight hours of focused productive time each day.  Somewhere in there is worry about whether or not it is safe to be going out and about again, and conjecture regarding what “normal” life will look like in the coming months.  And don’t get me started about the wasp and mosquito who have taken up residence in my living room!

Pandemic-wise, things are starting to loosen up around here, though it sounds as though I and my co-workers will be working remotely for much of the summer.  Funny, when I used to envy those who were able to work remotely all the time, this isn’t quite what I had expected.

My cat, at least, is thrilled with the my working from home.  He is free to wander in and out of the house all day long and get “on demand” attention.  I’m still wishing I had paid for faster internet.  While it was amusing at first to attend virtual video meetings where the video and the audio were out-of-sync, it has long since lost its charm.  Ah well, in the grand scheme of things, I’m lucky and I know it.

This past week I managed to fix my dishwasher, thanks to assistance from several random people via YouTube videos.  With that success under my belt, I’m thinking of tackling the leaking sprinkler system next.   Or maybe I’ll just read.  What I definitely plan to do is give today’s writing prompt and random words a try after work today.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Hope today’s post finds you happy and well.

I’m currently watching the news and listening to the plans for the gradual re-opening of my local area.  Though I’m not particularly eager to be in close contact with other individuals, I do have a longing to aimlessly brows the aisles of the local bookstore or the fabric store.  For now, the online library app will have to do.

Regardless of what happens next week, I’ll be doing Ye Olde Day Jobbe from my house for months to come (since office buildings are some of the last places to re-open) and dutifully wearing my mask whenever I leave the house.  I’m surprised how quickly it has become second nature to slip on a mask as I pick up my keys and purse.

Since heading out to paint the town is not on the agenda any time soon, I think I’ll pour myself and refreshing adult beverage and give today’s writing prompt and random words a try after work today.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Happy “It’s Almost the Weekend” day.

For those in the United States, this is is a holiday-weekend.  Monday is Memorial Day–a day for honoring and mourning the military personnel who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces.  It is also typically the unofficial kick-off of summer, although this year there will be nothing typical about it.

While the grocery stores are sporting plenty of meat for grilling and a variety of red, white, and blue items for that patriotic feel, a pandemic is hardly the time for big holiday gatherings.   My state is pretty much still in time-out, although we are moving into the curb-side phase of things.

My neighbors apparently got a head start on the “meat grilling” portion of the holiday program this evening–either that or their house was on fire.  Judging from the smell of lighter fluid wafting across the street, I’m going with the grilling answer.  I won’t be doing any grilling of my own, and not just because I don’t own a grill.  I have stocked up on spinach salad fixings, fresh fruit, and some refreshing adult beverages, all in an attempt to slow the impact of being stuck at home and away from the gym for more than two months now (online workouts can only help so much).

Growing up, holidays always seemed to require jello salad–often with some kind of unidentifiable fruit suspended in the jiggly mess and covered in cool-whip or some other nutritionally vacant substance–but there will be no jello salad for me.   I’m thinking that’s probably a “life-extending” decision.  I can’t guarantee that there won’t be donuts though.  Someone has to help keep the local bakery in business.  It’s my civic duty. 🙂

Before I succumb to a sugar high or imbibe a refreshing adult beverage, I think I’ll give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Happy Friday.  It is Friday, isn’t it?

To be honest, I’ve had my days mixed up all week, though that isn’t really such an unusual occurrence these days.  The only day I’m completely sure of is Wednesday, since that’s when the garbage trucks rumble through the neighborhood, grinding and clanking (and obsessionally thumping).

I don’t know about you, but my weeks at home have been filled with more seminars, webinars, phone calls, and Zoom meetings than I would have though possible.  Almost every email I get is either someone offering to teach me something or sell me something.  Ah well, at least it is proof that there are actually people out there somewhere.  As a plus, I’ve learned all kinds of new things–all of it for free!

In our work meetings, very few coworkers have been bold enough to turn on their cameras so we can see them when they talk.  Almost two months with no haircuts or coloring, plus no visits to the gym coupled with “working in comfortable clothes” has left many unwilling to make themselves visible once again.  I’m planning to brave the camera in my morning staff meeting, even if it means I will have to change out of pajamas and wear real clothes.  We’ll see how that goes.

Once my work day is done and I’ve gotten over the trauma of turning on the camera, I think I’ll reward myself with and adult beverage and then give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Welcome to the end of another week.  Or is it the beginning.  It’s getting harder and harder to tell.

I actually got to leave the house this week for something other than my weekly trip to the grocery store, which I’ve been treating like a game show.  Can I get in, get what I need, and get out this week faster than I did last week?

Wednesday included a trip to my actual office.  I needed some books and files that I hadn’t initially brought when we all were sent home and thought it was just going to be a temporary thing.  I’d forgotten what I nice view my office window provided (though all of those people out there without masks, what were they thinking?).

It was a little weird being the only one in my part of the building, not to mention strange to have to have my temperature taken before I could get to the elevators, but I appreciate the care they are taking.  I was also able to pickup my allotment of masks, so now I have a backup stash.  My computer apparently appreciated being attached to the network after such a long time; it took almost two hours for it to do all of the updating it needed to do (which was another reason I was in the office).  I was on conference calls most of that time, so it wasn’t too much of a problem.  I should have made a list of what I needed before I left home though.  I managed to forget one of the main things I stopped in to get.  In my defense, I got distracted just as I went to pick it up  by the package of batteries in my drawer that had gone on an acid-trip in my absence.  I seem to have that effect on batteries these days.

Anyway, now that I’m back home–having survived the crazy drivers on the road who seem to consider both speed limits and turn signals to be for “other people”–I’m ready to get back to sheltering in place.  Seems like a good time to pick up a favorite book or maybe pop a good romcom caper movie into the DVD player.  Before that though I think I’ll see what I can to with today’s writing prompt and random words.

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