Day Off

Mirror Mask. I can’t wait for this one – it looks gorgeous, as you would expect with the talents of Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean.

I went to the dentist. I need one tooth out right away, and another probably has to come out. :( I was terribly ill with nerves, and opted to come back to have it done at the same time as having a scaling. erk. I grew up in a small Northern California town, and we had one dentist. As an adult, I now think that he was probably an alcoholic, although my parents never said. He couldn’t pull a tooth without breaking it into pieces, and when he drilled teeth he would often slip and drill your tongue or gums. My sisters and I are all deathly afraid of dental work as a result.

I was thinking of my father today. Phil and I aren’t wealthy, by any means, but we both make a good wage and have no children or other big financial responsibilities, so we spend a lot of money. We don’t spend it on vacations in South America or anything expensive, mind you, but we don’t worry about spending the odd £50 or £100 or so on whatever – toys, console games, books, horse stuff, you name it.

I remember my father sitting at the kitchen table each payday, doing the budget and paying the bills. Everything was planned for, down to the penny, and there was no money beyond that. I remember that he used to put money for milk into an envelope, and that’s all that could be spent on milk that pay period. Money for school lunches, money for food shopping; things like new clothes were bought twice a year, Christmas and before the school year started. We were probably not very well off.

And yet…we had so much. We had horses, for one thing. My father finally gave in when I was ten (and had been asking for a horse since birth, practically), and I got a quarterhorse mare named Cheyenne. He bought riding books and became the 4-H horse leader, teaching us horsemanship from books and hauling my sister and I to shows. The trailer was secondhand and pretty beat up, but he painted it to match the pickup…even though the pickup was a color that he had always hated, calling it “babycrap tan.” We had a lot.

And now, we spend without thinking about it, money runs like water through our hands…and our lives are nowhere near as full. I don’t know why. We never do anything. And looking at my sisters and I, our children have even less discipline and ambition.

I wish I had inherited some of that energy and love of life. I should probably ask him how he did everything that he did, while I still have a chance.

1 thought on “Day Off”

  1. i remember cheyenne! what a character! remember how she used to drop that shoulder to try to dump off whoever was riding her? lol too funmy. i loved that horse.


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