My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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defying death at the St. Lawrence Market

Sam texted that the friend of a friend in the know warns that our premier is going to shut down the entire province for 2 weeks, everything. Not sure if that’s so. But – I’m ready.

Because I took my life in my hands this morning. Something amazing happened that never happens – I went to bed at 11:15 and woke up at 6:45. Unbelievable. No waking in the middle of the night to make lists on the notepad always by my bed. No flailing about from 3:00 to 5:30 and then sleeping in till 10. No, real efficiency, to bed, to sleep, wake up early. Thank you, body and mind. For once.

So I jumped on my bike and went to the St. Lawrence farmer’s market, as I usually do on Saturday mornings, though never remotely this early – 7:30 a.m. Everyone advised against this daring venture. I may regret taking the risk. It feels like we have to juggle living life versus safety, and sometimes, life wins. I was overjoyed to be on the bike early on a mild morning, the city mostly asleep and stuck inside in any case.

At the market, there were crosses on the sidewalk six feet apart as we waited to get in. That was new. Inside, some vendors were missing, like the marvellous Polish nut lady. But the Mennonite butchers, the Merchants of Green Coffee guy, the sourdough bread people, the Empire apple guy, the leeks and asparagus people – all there. I was happy to support our local farmers and stock up. Wore gloves as much as possible, tried not to touch my face, was in and out quickly, washed my hands as soon as I got home. Imagine – a death-defying, life on the edge trip to the market.

 Waiting to get in – a first

My booty and bounty, the spoils of my raid.

Last night, after sending off the manuscript – and today I regret that I bothered as a complete waste of time and energy, like all the other submissions, but what the hell – I watched two episodes of Unorthodox on my TV rather than my computer for the first time. Thanks, Brad, for hooking me up to the 21st century. What a terrific show – showing us the (absurdly) ritualistic lifestyle of the ultra-Orthodox Hasids of Williamsburg, a “lunatic fringe” of Judaism as one character says, while keeping our hearts pounding for the safety and future of the heroine. Can’t wait to watch the rest, and then James Corden at the National Theatre, and then so much more. Just listened while making a huge spaghetti sauce to a podcast via the NYT, Cheryl Strayed – Dear Sugar – chatting with the superb George Saunders about this particularly difficult era of life on earth.

I wrote an article about a writing colleague for the CNFC newsletter, and later, today’s excitement – taxes! Time flies when you’re having fun. The sun is coming out, the croci are dark mauve and the daffs are nearly here, Mrs. Cardinal has twigs in her beak for her nest somewhere above. I know, the cost of this pandemic is incalculable. All we can do is cherish each good moment as it arises. Time now for a fresh cup of coffee and another slab of sourdough bread: this is mine.



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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.

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