Tonight, we have friends over for dinner…grilled sausage and veggies and a few other odds and ends, just a simple meal requiring little effort in both preparation and clean-up. My wife’s energies were spent preparing King Ranch Chicken for the neighborhood pot-luck this weekend; she wants me to make tonight’s meal and I want simple. So shall it be.
The potluck was a success. Thirty-six people showed up at the house just up the street from us, bringing all manner of good stuff. Main dishes, of which there were many, consisted mainly of casserole-type dishes, like our KRC…pasta casseroles, ground beef casseroles, cheese and more cheese casseroles, ad infinitum. And meatballs…there were plates of meatballs, some moist and savory, some wet and sweet.
And then there were the appetizers; three people each brought a dozen deviled eggs, which disappeared in a flash. I talked to the woman who brought the one I especially liked, hoping she would offer the recipe; I should have asked for it outright.
I enjoyed the potluck. It confirmed, though, that I am one of the youngest people in the neighborhood. With the exception of a guy who lives next door to the hosts of the event, I think I’m at least ten to twelve years younger than most and probably thirty years younger than some.
Back to tonight, though. Dinner and conversation. I like that. No television, no computer, just conversation. That’s what life once was like…well, conversation and reading. Simple things, enjoyable things, pastimes that seem so civil and so…ancient.
Tomorrow morning, I meet the woodworkers for breakfast, then join them at another neighbor’s place for three hours of working on projects. I’ve been helping a guy build wooden train sets which will be given to an organization that provides presents to children of families in the area that live in grinding poverty. Though kids are not my ‘thing,’ I find this effort gratifying on many levels, not the least of which is emotionally.
Then, tomorrow night, my wife hosts her weekly card game. It’s usually hosted by the woman who organized the potluck, but she has other plans involving visits by out-of-town relatives. So, I will hide away in my study or in the garage, tinkering or writing or reading or otherwise staying out of the way.
Assuming all goes according to plan, early Wednesday morning I’ll be off to my pottery class, three more hours of creativity and education…more education than creativity for me. I’ve made a number of small, crude hand-formed pots and I’ve glazed several of them. Wednesday, I’ll glaze several more, then will begin making a mask…and maybe I’ll finish it.
What I find most appealing about the way my week plays out is that my schedule can change. At my sole discretion, I can decide to stay home and read instead of work on wood or I can decide to take a long drive instead of going to class. There are few hard and fast time commitments. Time is malleable. I like that.