I’m experiencing a struggle with the adjustment from travel to daily routine. We’ve been home since Sunday afternoon—approaching four days—and I still feel lethargic and distracted. I haven’t been able to focus on much of anything since returning home. Instead of scrutinizing what needs to be done, I’ve allowed myself to remain mostly befuddled and sluggish. It’s not that I’ve done nothing. I’ve done a lot, actually:

  • scheduled the 60K maintenance for the Subaru;
  • took Janine to Little Rock for a cardiologist visit;
  • wrote scathing email to the Slovenian airline that screwed up our return flights and mislaid our luggage;
  • switched a dental appointment from next week to this morning;
  • picked up our held mail and restarted delivery;
  • miscellaneous other things of equal disinterest.

But, really, my productivity slithers along the floor, barely overtopping bits of dust in its way. And I’ve been extremely tired since getting home, though my wife says I seemed extremely tired during most of our trip to the Balkans. And she’s probably right. I wonder what’s causing that? Maybe my persistent cough and my breathing issues contribute to my lack of energy. Well, I go in for my annual physical next Monday (with blood-work tomorrow), so perhaps I’ll find out that I need to eat more iron or steel or, perhaps, bronze. Yes, that’s it. I need to eat more bronze or brass. I’ll sneak out of the house at night in search of large brass or bronze statues and will consume them, leaving communities stunned to awaken the following day to find just remnants—with teeth marks. That’s not realistic, is it? Of course not. Why do I venture down such strange alleys? I don’t know. It’s just a psychosis, I guess.

It won’t be long before I write a long travelogue about our trip through the Balkans. Until then, I’ll attempt to overcome my lethargy. Good coffee might help. I had some coffee at a hotel in Dubrovnik that I thought was excellent—strong, full-bodied, flavorful—that a woman in our group found inadequate. She had moved to Maryland from Seattle and felt especially competent to judge coffee; the Croatian coffee was not “good” coffee, she said. I thought otherwise. Our difference of opinion was insufficient to start a global conflict, so we left it to fade away like most conflicts should.  But, wait, I’ve already started writing about my travel. I must stop. It’s not yet time. I must allow my experiences to deepen in my mind; but I mustn’t let them disappear into the fog of misty memories.

Somewhere, sometime, during the last few weeks, I decided I don’t really want a dog after all. I want a close neighbor who has a very nice dog, a dog that likes me and visits me often. Since I’m indulging my fantasy, I’d like the dog to be named Lorcan. Lorcan is a small but powerful dog with a growl that breeds fear and shivers. But he’s a sweet little guy around me. Lorcan’s sister, Sinead, spends time around me, too, but she is more reserved than Lorcan; I suppose I’d classify her as an introvert. Why the dogs were given Irish names I do not know. Though they’re both mutts, I doubt they have any Irish canine ancestry. I suppose my neighbor, Séamus O’Sullivan had his reasons for naming the beasts. Actually, I do not have a neighbor by the name of Séamus O’Sullivan but if I did I feel certain he would have two dogs as I’ve described. It’s just a sense, you know.



About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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