My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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busy busy busy

I have to say that this week has been, perhaps, particularly stressful. I know, not ill health or family emergency, far from it. But today – mon dieu. My best friend Chris has arrived from Vancouver for a much-awaited visit. Early tomorrow, if I can drag myself out of bed, we leave for Montreal for the weekend together, then I go on to Ottawa to visit my mother – a long talk with her today, as she tried to figure out what day it was today, what day that meant I was coming. And I, trying to remember where I’d put the keys to her condo, where I’ll stay.

John and Kevin arrived at 8 a.m., as they always do, to begin sanding and plastering. I need to leave detailed information for the painter, and took Chris with me to the hardware store to decide about colours. Dan has at least two days of painting while I’m gone. The sanding and plastering went on, dried by hairdryers and fans. I had seventeen phone calls to make about work, to the homeless guy Bill who’ll come and water while I’m away (who came over to borrow $10 beforehand) and to the other John who’ll come and feed the cat.  I went to pick up my neighbour Monique’s mail because she’s away too. I tried to pack.

Anna came over with the baby, who melted all hearts, mostly mine; he needed to be fed – three times – and his mama wanted to go to Star Nails to get a manicure, which we managed while the baby bounced in the Jolly Jumper and then slept on my chest. A blessed lull. Jean-Marc and Richard came for lunch, which somehow we managed to put together, with their help, though I’m leaving tomorrow for nearly a week so am trying to clear out the fridge. The roofer arrived twice, to finish bits and pieces and to propose various finishings for the roof. We talked to the termite guy to confirm his next visit and what needed to be done. I was making a doctor’s appointment, checking in with New York, asking Chris to water the garden, trying to get to the bank and the dry cleaner, watching the new walls and ceiling of the bedroom emerge amidst showers of dust. John took out the upstairs bathroom toilet because it was in their way. For a week now, I’ve washed my face and brushed my teeth in a bathroom without a door, and now without a toilet, with 2 or 3 guys working feet away.

At a certain point, Chris asked me why I was so tense. He advised me to relax and let life flow over me.

We walked from here to my son’s restaurant for dinner, leaving Anna and the babe on the couch, the roofer in the yard and Kevin and John upstairs still in the bedroom. The men assure me that when we get back, next week, it will all be done. I’ll believe it when I see it.

We had a wonderful dinner. Now to finish packing, to print the boarding passes, to clean the cat dish, to water the plants. And then – onward. It’ll be good to get out of here for a while.

P.S. The cat just puked.



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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

Some Blogs I Follow

Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.

Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.

I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.

Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.


Coming soon

A new book by Beth Kaplan, published by Mosaic Press – “Midlife Solo”

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