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March 21, 2018: Heading South

This morning, my sister Eleanor called. I was in the process of getting the goats back into the pen. They did not want to enter the gate. I think they were saying they preferred to stay outside. But I wanted them inside, so I knew where they might be. Pete came to the door as the goats came in the backyard gate. Once inside the gate, Ryder assists me in putting them away into their pen. All she has to do is look at them and they go into their pen. Sometimes, if they are being balky, she will herd them into the enclosure. Today they were balky.

I told Pete to call Ryder. I went to latch the outer gate which right now isn’t latching very well because there is frozen ice at the base of it. Ryder appeared and put the goats away. I got the latch secured and went to take the call.


I had, before going out this morning, put “Call EL” on my list of things to do. As I did this, I thought that the sheer act of writing down that I needed to make a phone call was really pathetic. Generally, people don’t write this sort of thing on lists of things to do. This is because they are on the phone multiple times a day. Not me. I talk on the phone at the very most, three times a week.

So, I had to switch gears and postpone eating breakfast for a bit. There really was not a more convenient time to talk to El. I had, in a manner of speaking, to switch gears.

As I get older, switching gears is taking more effort. By this I mean that I first am cognizant of the fact that I’m doing this, and then cognizant of the fact that I am doing it. Switching tracks is also more difficult in the morning, when I am figuring out what my day will entail. Today, it seemed, was one in which I had a number of disparate tasks to tend to, both inside and out.

And so, once I switched gears and picked up the phone, I was on the differing track, or so I thought.

El wanted to talk about our upcoming trip itinerary. We are going to San Francisco together – this is going to be a sister trip. I am so looking forward to this, as is she. We’ll spend two days at Pete’s sister Sara’s place and two days in the city. I can’t think of anyone else who I’d rather travel with. And I have my fingers crossed that this goes well and that in the future we can do more trips together.

I had not thought for a few days about the itinerary, and when I looked at the calendar with its multiple scribbles, I suddenly felt overwhelmed. So I handed the phone and calendar to Pete and he did some clarification. I then went upstairs because the downstairs phone crackles.

I talked with El for a while – had I remained on the other track, I would have cut the conversation short. But by now I was firmly on the track that at that moment I most wanted and needed to be on.

I sometimes think that if I became seriously ill for, say, a short length of time, that my priorities would change. And what I’d then realize would be that what I think is important really is not.

Talking with El did get my day off to a good start because it put my mind in trip mode. I now will start thinking about the things I’d like to do in San Francisco.

Next: 81. 3/22/18: When Your Days are Your Own

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