Monday, December 09, 2002

A Day In The Life: Breakfast; Brattleboro; Back

Mocha Joe's coffeeshop. Ginny works there.

Woke up at 7:45 on Sunday to find the baby's feet in my face; she had somehow managed to turn herself 90 degrees looking for Darcie, who had left at 7:00 to load kids on the a ski trip bus. Managed not to wake up completely, and so I was able to slip easily into sleep again when Darcie came in the door and back to bed a few minutes later. Ahh, sleep...I miss it so during the week.

Back up at 10:00 for a breakfast meeting at the the only real restaurant in Northfield, a small town which also has two small cafes, a bakery and a general store which makes deli sandwiches. Meeting was with a student who wanted me to write a college recommendation letter. I like the idea of getting off campus to have the pre-rec-letter-writing conference, because that way no one feels like they're supposed to be somewhere else. The pressure of "Oh, I'm at school and should be working" goes away when off campus; just ask the relaxed students in the general store in front of the laundromat: this is really why kids wash their clothes off campus instead of using the school laundry service.

Also, I figure, writing the recommendation letter is a big responsibility, what with the kids' college futures at stake, so it might as well come with a full buffet. The Big Kitchen Cafe was started about four years ago out of an old barn in the middle of a row of houses in town; in addition to the usual local-and-fresh bacon and sausage, eggs, and waffles, one can have potatoes with or without hefty chunks of smoked pork, deep fried french toast, apple enchiladas (a specialty of the house), and a dozen other sundry treats. Pastries and pie, four kinds of juice, coffee and hot chocolate: the interview lasted a while but was fully satisfying for all involved. And best of all, now I get a page of notes which, in sentence form, pretty much become the recommendation.

Home by noon, and, after a short call to Josh and Clay, who were expected to deliver my new car (my grandparent's old car) today but couldn't be reached, on the road again by 1:00. To Brattleboro, VT, 20 minutes north, where the holiday spirit of commercialism, flavored by the small-town quaintness of the primarily tourist-oriented but not touristy shops, was bringin' 'em in in droves. No street parking so I dropped Darcie and the baby off at Mocha Joes, the mellow coffeeshop where Darcie's sister Virginia works, and walked over from a nearby lot. Ginny was busy, but she made my usual free double latte with a vanilla shot and slipped it to me while Darcie breastfed in the corner.

The next few hours are a blur of shops, heaving the stroller up endless stairs and over infinite stoops, and this might be nice for your sister; do you know her shoe size?. Just like last year, the year before, and every other time Darcie and I have gone Christmas shopping, we bought ourselves and Willow a few small things, found a good present for my brother (not telling what it is; he might read this!) and for Darcie's Secret Santa thing at work (A Hamlet fingerpuppet set from The Unemployed Philosopher's Guild), and thought too much about what other people might like without buying anything. Thank G-d for, but I might buy more at The Unemployed Philosopher's Guild website. I mean, they have freudian slippers. And check this out:

Finally encountered the elusive brother-in-law Josh and his long time girlfriend Clay at Darcie's parent's house, where despite my best intentions we inevitably end up staying for supper when visiting Brattleboro. Steak and mushrooms on the grill in the middle of winter really hits the spot, and hanging out at the in-laws is very relaxing, what with everyone sitting in the kitchen to get the full brunt of the soapstone stoves which heat the house in winter, but the baby got cranky and my alergies started acting up -- they have three long-hair cats and a big ol' Saint Bernard with a pedigree -- so it was time to get home.

Home meant Ginny coming over for the evening to help me preview South Park and Beavis and Butthead videos for the Mass Media class I'm teaching tomorrow (have I mentioned I love my job?), Josh and Clay stopping by to drop off the new car, and going for a spin in the powder blue couch on wheels. You could hide six bodies in the trunk, and the front seat feels like an armchair. I think I'm gonna like this car. I mean, look at it:

It's like driving a boat.

posted by boyhowdy | 1:00 AM |

Post a Comment
coming soon
now listening