Saturday, August 3, 2013

Yesterday — a collective list about August 1, 2013, written on August 2, 2013


Yesterday I wondered if I'd have anything worth writing tomorrow morning.
Yesterday morning I walked on the beach in the rain.

Yesterday the first thing I felt was a push from a cold, wet dachshund nose in the exact middle of my forehead, and later in the day I laughed because my dog made a sound like there was a tiny cement mixer stuck in her mouth.

Yesterday I lay in a hammock and listened to the wind chimes in the tree.

Yesterday I pushed my fat cat over.

Yesterday I acted like the nerd I really am.

Yesterday evening I took a deep breath and inhaled the fragrance of a moonflower.

Yesterday I started reading The Art of Possibility and thought to myself, "If only more writers studied haiku, how much more enjoyable it would be to read their prose."

Yesterday my 77-year-old mother and I played "dress up," while shopping for nothing at all.  

Yesterday I watched my mother giggle and squeal with the discomfort of being tickled while the young woman giving her a pedicure used a file on her feet.

Yesterday I rode shotgun while my mother drove just like I used to when I was 10 or so.

Yesterday I thought of Carol King's song, On the First Day in August ("I wanna wake up by your side, after sleeping with you on the last night in July") and was 15 again in my bedroom dreaming of who that would be by my side when it happened, and so grateful it is who it is.

Yesterday I saw a double rainbow.

Yesterday I went to the Silver Sneakers exercise class and spilled my water bottle.

Yesterday I went to the writing group at the retirement center and we wrote about rocks.

Yesterday I finally did the dishes because the soaking water smelled bad.

Yesterday I watched a Miss Marple DVD starring Joan Hickson, who is my favorite Miss Marple.

Yesterday my mother and I went horseback riding on two of the spunkiest horses we ever met.

Yesterday I started a new story that I've wanted to write since I was four, but I was too tired from being an adult to get past the first chapter.

Yesterday was a good day for time to stop using up my life and let me enjoy my family longer, but time stops for no one.

Yesterday I called Social Security to sign up for my retirement benefits and later I went to Cass Park and pitched a softball game.

Yesterday I spent so much time making an exhaustive "to do" list that I didn't get any of the things done at all.

Yesterday my sister and I talked on the phone about all the things that are truly important in life and laughed at how short our conversation was before we got bored and went on to more mundane stuff.

Yesterday I read The Vanishing Pumpkin 23 times, and it's not even close to Halloween yet.

Yesterday I wanted to crawl in bed with chocolate and Middlemarch and never leave.

Yesterday I made two big loaves of bread with my child and I didn't even have to clean up any spilled flour.

Yesterday I got all sweaty and hot making jam, and then I got even more sweaty and hot thinking about the peach and dried cherry chutney I'm going to make next. 

Yesterday I got a bug bite on my left calf; strangely, the universe continues in its course despite this.

Yesterday was the first day of my birthday month and bright and early I got a card from a dear friend wishing me joy throughout the month.

Yesterday I had the sweetest corn yet this season, and the first, most luscious, succulent tomato from the garden.

Yesterday I came even closer to realizing that in fact I have become the person I want to be.

Yesterday I was so thankful we had the courage to leave our wonderful life in California and move back to Ithaca.

Yesterday I loved with a full and giving heart.

Yesterday I wrote a haiku about my garden having hemispheres.

Yesterday I was doing a love meditation and started to cry.

Yesterday my kids and I saw a catbird for the first time.

Yesterday my friend just happened to call and be available to give me and my injured bike a ride home one minute after I hit a rock going 27 mph, blew out my back tire, and interrupted the most glorious downhill glide.

Yesterday my neighbor saw me carrying my flat tire toward my car to take to the bike shop for repair, said "No you don't!  Get over here with that!" and had me back home with my bike good as new in under 20 minutes. 

Yesterday I felt blessed and grateful for the serendipity and good will that surrounds me and from which I benefit daily. 

Yesterday a young friend and I got lost in the magical world of James and the Giant Peach at the Hangar Theatre and topped off our spree with ice cream at Purity.  

Yesterday I opened a lantern-shaped seed pod from a golden-rain tree to find out what was inside.

Yesterday I took a carload of basement junk to the Solid Waste Center and felt a huge weight lifted when I dumped it in the bin.

Yesterday I walked all the way to my therapist’s office in order to report to her that I was getting out and walking.

Yesterday I packed my mother into her car and sent her back to her home, and I felt both relief and guilt that I was feeling relief.

Yesterday, despite the fact that my body is still recovering from cancer treatments, I copied scores of 4-fork recipes from The Epicurious Cookbook, for the vicarious pleasure of imagining cooking and eating luxurious food.

Yesterday I thought of two fantastic, achievable ideas for friends to do together that would be both worthwhile for them and for others.

Yesterday I took steps to resolve a problem that has been troubling me for years and adopted hope to take residence in a place where there was resignation.

Yesterday the oh so wonderful, so glad I found him when I so much needed him massage therapist persuaded my body to release and revive.

Yesterday, without shame, I spooned a store-bought macaroni salad into my glass bowl, garnished it with paprika, and took it to the picnic as my dish-to-pass.

Yesterday I tried again to convince my 90-year-old dad to come home to Ithaca now, for Texas is not his real home at all.

Yesterday it rained like crazy at our house but not at our neighbor's house just up the road.

Yesterday I had to clean up a small misunderstanding. 

Yesterday I saw young farmers bouncing with health, enthusiasm and energy at the CSA pickup.

Yesterday my grandson sat on my lap and played the cello. 

Yesterday I watched my wife display beauty, poise and wisdom that made me love her even more. 

Yesterday I promised myself that I would not let money dictate my life any longer.

Yesterday I decided it is good to be a recluse.

Yesterday I laughed so hard I cried and I was all by myself.

Yesterday I realized that there was a theme to the day: alone is good.

Yesterday I stayed in my pajamas until late morning doing crossword puzzles, using my favorite black G-2 pen.

Yesterday I felt excitement and anticipation buying six white Prismacolor pencils at the craft store.

Yesterday we picnicked on Cobb salad and grapes at Myers Park and marveled at people on paddle boards doing yoga without even once falling into Salmon Creek. 

Yesterday I listened to a road worker sing as he held the stop/slow sign and twirled it wildly. 

Yesterday I found a place to live — finally live!

Yesterday I wondered why I was given this unpredictable, invisible illness and wondered if I would live longer than my mother did. 

Yesterday I looked in the mirror and thought I saw my mother. 

Yesterday I flirted with just about everyone I met. 

Yesterday I remembered a lot of '90s songs and longed for the days of grunge and being "so alternative."

Yesterday I listened to Laura Nyro's album Live at the Filmore East, and missed New York City and all that was home.

Yesterday I went to the University library, stood in the stacks, looked at all the books written about Dickens, and felt calmer.

Yesterday I listened to my daughter recite She Walks in Beauty and felt amazed.

Yesterday I fell asleep listening to Led Zeppelin’s first album on my headphones.

Yesterday I skimmed a bit of the first chapter of a book on Walter Pater and was reminded how much his writings showed me that appreciating art could be as creative as creating it.

Yesterday I crawled around without thoughts. 

Yesterday I swept spiders off my steps, because they're my steps!

Yesterday I ran down the stairs, hoping to see you at the bottom.

Yesterday I realized some things about myself.

Yesterday I woke up too early and opened my book to page 316 to read for a while before trying to sleep again.

Yesterday I closed the bedroom windows as soon as I heard the rain start.

Yesterday I paid rent, dropping the envelope into my landlord's mailbox while the dog next door barked at me.

Yesterday I started the morning by feeding and providing fresh water to ten ducks and over a hundred chickens of various ages.

Yesterday I didn't make any progress on cleaning the house, even though it is going to take at least two weeks to get the house ready for company that is coming next week.

Yesterday I stood on a ridge, turned slowly, and saw beautiful rugged mountains in every direction. 

Yesterday the Arkansas River roared by me as I ate lunch along its banks.

Yesterday I oohed and aahed over sidewalk gardens crowded with delphinium, bellflowers, larkspur, coreopsis, and painted daisies.

Yesterday the hummingbirds vied with each other at the feeder for a drink of sugar water.

Yesterday there was a Humphrey Bogart film festival on Turner Classic Movies and I taped three to watch later.

Yesterday I wore purple and yellow argyle socks and a green sweater.

Yesterday I crossed out things I didn't want to do and sent out apology e-mails.

Yesterday I looked up at the stars and talked to my mother on the telephone.

Yesterday I discovered I had many wonderful friends who love me.

Yesterday I continued cleaning and packing my apartment in preparation for my move to New York City.

Yesterday I remembered how much I love to write and I felt better.

Yesterday I realized that right now I am lucky, living in the best possible of all worlds, right now, for me.  

Yesterday I enjoyed the crickets, blew a kiss to the sky, ate a lot of peanut butter, found a new joy, danced, and wrote a new song.

Yesterday I discovered that I don’t understand what the future means.

Yesterday I found support among friends and family that I hadn’t anticipated.

Yesterday I learned that many other artists besides me feel unappreciated, exploited and abused.

Yesterday I tripped on the pavement.

Yesterday I went out in search of piles of free stuff because it was August 1 and everyone is moving, but I couldn't find anything. 

Yesterday I put sun-dried tomatoes in my coffee. 

Yesterday I broke up with my hairstylist. 

Yesterday I admitted I might never actually hike the Appalachian Trail, but I can still dream about it.

Yesterday we played Family: I was the kid and my children were the parents; they treated me like a princess.

Yesterday I fried dosas for breakfast, snacks, lunch, and more snacks.

Yesterday I taught my baby the sign for gentle, and he taught me the sign for hug.

Yesterday I paid a big library fine and then overpaid for a couple of used books, because libraries need all the help we can give them.

Yesterday I was immeasurably grateful for the sweet friends I write to, even though we've never met.

Yesterday I watered all my porch plants with a mixture of guilt — at having forgotten them for two days — and relief (that they hadn't died).

Yesterday I got to use my new big "mushroom" umbrella and I felt so protected I took the long way home.

Yesterday I watched two hours of MasterChef and then ordered dinner from the Chinese place down the street. 

Yesterday a four-year-old boy flirted with me so I flirted right back.

Yesterday I danced wild and naked in my kitchen.

Yesterday I offered to help, only to find I couldn't really do much, so I left an apology note with a smily face and moved on. 

Yesterday I tried saffron ice cream cake for the first time, and I didn't like it. 

Yesterday I felt better after changing from a peach-colored shirt to a rust-colored one, even though the latter was more wrinkly.

Yesterday I went to my women’s sangha, as I have most Thursday mornings for the past 13 years, and we talked about the meaning of true compassion: so simple, so difficult.

Yesterday I was struck by how much daylight and birdsong we’ve lost since Solstice.

Yesterday was the Sisyphus moment when the stone started rolling back down the hill: I really have to quit my job.

Yesterday I ate my home-cooked leftovers for both lunch and dinner, different ones, and re-loved them.

Yesterday I committed idolatry: adoring a fresh, perfect, inimitable Pennsylvania peach.

Yesterday I met the new folks down the block, except they were workers doing a bit of redecorating, but they heartily took pains to reassure me that I’d love my new neighbor.

Yesterday just a shiver of anger shook me in a flash realization of how little I can do to fix the world.

Yesterday morning I had a nice long phone chat with a friend, which inspired me to do more writing.

Yesterday I made two loaves of zucchini bread, loaded with wild black raspberries.

Yesterday I spent a lot of time preparing for tonight's barn dance.

Yesterday I went to sleep while six jars of blueberry jam were left cooling on the kitchen counter.

Yesterday I took good care of the various animals that rely on me for support.

Yesterday I enjoyed the butterflies and hummingbirds and bees in the back yard.

Yesterday I gave away some useful objects that I had but was not using.

Yesterday I got a raise, which excited me until I figured it meant an extra seven dollars a week after taxes.

Yesterday I had a salad, secure in the knowledge that no one would know.

Yesterday I laughed out loud at the trailer for a movie called Bad Grandpa.

Yesterday I saw a calf suckling at its mother in a field as I drove through Lisle on my way to visit my friend in Ithaca.

Yesterday I burned the bacon I put into the toaster oven because I got distracted by all the things I have to do to buy my first house.

Yesterday I talked to my brother while I was driving to our mother's house in New York and we both cried, missing her.

Yesterday I listened to Game of Thrones on CD while on a road trip. 

Yesterday I avoided reading an email, and it haunted me. 

Yesterday I could barely keep my eyes open at 6:30 p.m. and I forced myself to stay awake until 8:30 p.m. 

Yesterday I ricocheted between ecstatic and depressed, which is not unusual but is unfortunate. 

Yesterday I felt weirdly experienced at work after only doing the job for a day, when I had to explain to my (more experienced) co-workers what we were supposed to be doing. 

Yesterday was raining and I had to come up with a fun thing to do to entertain my granddaughter, so we decided to build a piƱata.

Yesterday I went to a nursery and bought myself a bunch of plants because they were on sale.

Yesterday I drove four hours with my sister; I wish it could have been longer. 

Yesterday I decided I was worth more than being ignored or taken for granted, but then he called and I melted all over again.

Yesterday I woke to my cat licking my face with his rough, enthusiastic tongue and cried out of gratitude for the unprompted attention. 

Yesterday I pulled out a long-stale box of pastels and did not recognize the drawing that poured out of me.

Yesterday I fell asleep with a new cat on my chest.

Yesterday I ended up in a soul-dampening argument with someone I love, as I have over and over again.

Yesterday I forgot to make a very important phone call.

Yesterday I wondered again why some people change the subject when you've just shared the most vulnerable of truths or dreams.

Yesterday I marveled that it was cool enough to wear cowboy boots in August and reveled in my stompy gate and the swish of my skirt.

Yesterday, at a contra dance my wife was calling, I danced with beginners and with wall flowers and with a man.

Yesterday I saw a fox in a ditch, but no deer, driving home from Rochester. 

Yesterday I had three body parts scanned at Cayuga Medical Center, which left me feeling a little dis-jointed. 

Yesterday I cleaned out the refrigerator and served it to my husband as dinner.

Yesterday I visited my 91-year-old mother and as we admired her newly planted rose bush she told me how it looked bigger last year.

Yesterday I had a Skype interview for a Visitor Educator internship at the New England Aquarium, and worried about it for hours afterward.

Yesterday my little brother was my waiter at the Boatyard Grill.

Yesterday I had the whole store in gales of laughter when I tried on a hideous pair of red patent leather wedge sandals (six inch heels!) — and couldn't walk in them.

Yesterday was "Ladies Day Out" with my daughter and we had so much fun together; it was good to act like a kid again.  

Yesterday I walked for a mile in a horrendous downpour of warm rain and got my butt thoroughly soaked.

Yesterday my apple CSA share from Little Tree Orchards started up, and the half-peck of July Reds make a beautiful bowlful indeed.

Yesterday I mistook the grass seed mixture that my neighbor had spread on my lawn for a virulent fungus and spent a demented several minutes raking it off.

Yesterday I crocheted a handsome edge on a gorgeous afghan, if I say so myself.

Yesterday I concocted a delicious squash casserole, with much butter, garlic and cheese, to serve to my Massachusetts friend at the end of her long drive.

Yesterday I magically remembered an old friend's number and we reconnected.

Yesterday I moved a slug off the sidewalk so it wouldn't get smushed.

Yesterday a line of eleven squirrels ran across my back yard for no apparent reason.

Yesterday five brawny young men wearing lime green T-shirts put down new stinky, shiny black asphalt paving for a neighbor's parking area.

Yesterday the female Pileated Woodpecker came to the suet feeder; her "Woody Woodpecker" crest was brilliant red, but she looked frazzled and unkempt.

Yesterday I found three birthday cards for my sister but couldn't decide which to send, so I sent all three.

Yesterday my mother-in-law called in the evening to vehemently insist that she couldn't find any of her short-sleeved blouses, that I must have brought them all to my house, and she "hadn't had them all summer."

Yesterday I took care of my grandson for five hours and we had fun talking about frogs and backhoes, and reading The Little Blue Truck over and over, but I didn't brush his teeth before he went to sleep, so his mother scolded me.

Yesterday I had avocado on toast for breakfast and a Lindt chocolate candy before lunch.

Yesterday I went to Wegmans twice because in the summer I don't have to sweep snow off the windshield or put on boots or button my coat or find my gloves or pull on my blue hat if I want to make a Chicken Tagine and I don't have any chicken.

Yesterday I decided to reclaim my life which has oozed out over the edges, like Dali's clocks, causing me to spend too much time cleaning and emailing and weeding and such.

Yesterday, while minding my own beeswax at a coffee shop, I was annoyed and scared by someone talking and laughing to someone in their head.

Yesterday I was comforted by a message from God that said, "Be calm — I'm everywhere."

Yesterday I was glad to be alive.

Yesterday I set the language on my phone to French.

Yesterday, while looking through old photo albums, I raced my cousin at finding our grandmother in group photos.

Yesterday I discovered that cantaloupe and salad dressing don't mix.

Yesterday I fell asleep on a train to the rhythmic clunk of metal and
the crescendos of air from each whoosh through a tunnel.

Yesterday I hung clean clothes on a dripping wet clothesline, and hoped it wouldn't rain before I returned from my evening meeting.

Yesterday I didn't get very annoyed when I might have gotten very annoyed.

Yesterday I felt so happy to pet my cat after a week away from her.

Yesterday I told a friend that I was practicing how to be a better liar.

Yesterday I kept repeating the word "seltzer" as I walked through Wegmans, so I wouldn't forget to buy seltzer, but in the end the word became meaningless, I didn't even know what I was saying anymore, and I forgot to buy the seltzer.

Yesterday I bought a book from the $1 table outside Autumn Leaves (The Worst Thing I've Done, by Ursula Hegi), brought it home, tore out the first 10 pages, stapled them together, and started reading; the whole book was daunting but 10 pages at a time is very doable.

Yesterday I followed a man down the street because he smelled good — too sweet for up-super-close but just sweet enough from a semi-respectable distance.

Yesterday someone I know slightly suggested that I contact someone else (who I don't yet know at all) and I did, which might lead to something good or it might go nowhere.

Yesterday was a good day for cloud watching.

Yesterday I repeated the chant guru guru wahe guru guru ram das guru over and over and over (inside my head) and it eased my way.

Yesterday I tried to remember the last time I saw the Atlantic Ocean.

Yesterday I thought about writing this today.


Thank you to all these wonderful contributors:

Alex Crump
Alexa Raine-Wright
Alexander Nicolas
Alexis Rotella
Anne Killian-Russo
Antonia Matthew
Barbara Force
Barbara West
Blue Waters
Caterina Fusca
Cathy Bargar
Chaya Spector
Dawn Apanius
Donna Holt
Emily Johnson
Gabrielle Vehar
Gay Huddle
Gerri Jones
Hank Roberts
Laura LaRosa
Leslie Ungberg
Jackie Parslow
Jackson Petsche
Jane Roberts
Jennifer Groff
John Henderson
Linda Keeler
Linda Pope
Lottie Sweeney
Lucia Roberts
Lynne Taetzsch
Mary Roberts
Maryam Steele
Meryl Young
Mieke Ruina
Miriam Frischer
Nancy Gabriel
Pamela Goddard 
Pat Palmer
Patrick Robbins
Patty Flannery
Perri McGowan
Pilar Greenwood
Railey Savage
Rebecca Weger
Rob Sullivan
Sabina Hascup
Sasha Paris
Shirley Elliott
Sue Neuenschwander
Sue Norvell
Susan  Koon
Susan Lesser
Vivian Relta
Weiwei Luo
Will Fudeman
Zee Zahava