Posted by: Marie | June 29, 2014

(943) Worth another shot – Part 1 of 2

Post #943
[Private journal entry written on the morning of Saturday, September 1, 2012]

It’s morning and Melodie is taking a shower, so I figured I’d make use of the quiet time and journal a bit . . .

I was quite slow getting on the road yesterday morning . . . I guess I’m pretty exhausted after working long hours to get everything done at the studio so I could take four days off . . . I couldn’t drag my butt out of bed yesterday. And, then, because I hadn’t even begun packing, it took me quite a while to get everything packed into the car.

The cottage we are renting does not have an oven or a stove top, and there are no pots and pans or cooking utensils. The owner told me that there is a little dorm frig and a microwave, and then some plates, glasses/cups and silverware. So, not only did I have to pack pots, pans and cooking utensils, I also had to pack my toaster oven and a hot plate. Because I had all that to do, it was 8:30am before I finally got on the road.

It is important to me that we are able to cook our meals at the cottage . . . one reason is because cooking is cheaper than eating out. Plus, there appears to be only a few little restaurants in Red Cloud, and their hours of operation over the holiday weekend are sketchy, at best.

Besides, Melodie recently lost 40 pounds (18kg) – she is still working to lose more – and I want to make sure our menu supports her efforts to improve her health . . . not to mention that it wouldn’t hurt me to eat healthily, as well. So, when I bought groceries at Wal-Mart in Hastings yesterday, I bought only wholesome proteins and produce – no junk food.

When I called Melodie from the Wal-Mart, she said that she had gotten the air mattress from the cottage owner (the owner was able to find it). I asked her if it was holding air and she said she hadn’t tested it yet, but that it looked brand new and she believed it would be fine . . . I had asked her to test it out before I got to Hastings so we would know for sure if it worked, but she didn’t feel like doing that (she said it was too hot in the cottage to mess with it) and I didn’t want to sit there in the Wal-Mart parking lot while she tested it, so, we decided to take a gamble and not buy an air mattress . . . worse case, we would have had to make the 45-minute-each-way drive back to Hastings to buy one before bedtime . . .

The cottage

The cottage

I didn’t get to the cottage until a little before 4:00pm . . . more than an hour later than planned. Somehow, Melodie had understood that I would get to Red Cloud around 1:00 although I was planning to get to Hastings around that time. (It is possible I didn’t specify one location versus the other, I don’t remember exactly what I said.) So she thought I was running almost three hours late.

As we were unpacking my car, Melodie really gave me a ribbing about arriving late . . . and maybe I was just tired, but it got under my skin a bit . . . I mean, really . . . I’m the one who packed up all the kitchen stuff and then went shopping en route . . . all she had to do was show up and get the key and air mattress from the cottage owner, unlock the cottage, unload her suitcase and turn on the air conditioner . . .

And, she didn’t lose an hour due to a time change like I did . . . and her drive was 340 miles (547 km) compared to my 410 miles (708 km) . . . but, I just went along with the ribbing and let it slide off my back the best I could . . . she means well . . . it is her way of connecting with me . . . knowing that allows me to not take it personally on most occasions . . .

Cottage floor plan

Cottage floor plan

Anyway, Melodie gave me a tour of the cottage . . . it is a small square building – maybe 400 square feet (36 sq meters) – with what appears to have been a small bedroom blocked off in one corner. The bathroom (toilet, sink and shower stall) occupy one end of that former bedroom and free-standing storage cabinets occupy the other end. The cabinets have some compartments available in which we can hang clothes.

The living room and kitchen space were pretty crowded with antique furniture and an antique wood/coal oven/stove unit (that wasn’t operational). There was very little space for us to put the air mattresses . . . we decided we would figure out where to put the mattresses a bit later in the evening . . .

We were both pretty hungry by the time we got the car unpacked and the kitchen set up . . . Melodie has to watch her blood sugar levels because she tends to have diabetic-type issues . . . so, the first order of business was to start cooking supper . . .

As soon as I plugged in and turned on the toaster oven, the fuse blew . . . we very quickly discovered that we cannot run the air conditioner (window unit) and the toaster oven at the same time . . .

So, we turned off the air conditioner, reset the fuse, opened the front and back doors to get a breeze going the best we could, and turned the oven back on . . . it was so hot outside (high 90’s – approximately 36°C), so the “breeze” didn’t do much to help with the temperature inside the cottage . . . it was miserably hot . . . if we hadn’t have been so hungry, I think we would have chosen the air conditioner over the oven . . .

The air conditioner is not that impressive of a unit, but at least we can sit directly in front of it when it is running and enjoy the direct blast of cool it kicks out . . . which is better than no cool air flow . . .

While I was waiting for the chicken breast fillets to cook, I tested the air mattress . . . thank goodness, it worked fine.

Melodie prepared the veggies in the microwave and I set the table . . . by the time the chicken was cooked, I was finally in a position where I could sit down and relax a bit. We served up the food and turned back on the air conditioner. I sat down on the couch – we couldn’t eat at the kitchen table because it was totally covered by the cooking supplies I brought with me . . .

Melodie sat down next to me on the couch . . . right next to me . . . I mean, squished up against me . . .

Now, she has always done that . . . she has always tended to hang out in my personal space . . . I’ve always been able to tolerate it . . . she is the only adult in the world that I have allowed to do that on a regular basis . . . I’ve allowed it because it is just what she does . . . she always has . . .

But, I couldn’t handle it last night . . . I don’t know why not . . . well, part of it is that it was about 85 degrees (30°C) in the cottage and it was just too hot to be that close to another human being. But it was more than that . . . for whatever reason, I am more aware of my personal space now and I just couldn’t tolerate having her that close to me . . . especially when there was room on the couch for us to sit a bit apart from each other. I thought to myself: We have the use of an entire cottage . . . why do we have to occupy the same small space?

So, I said something along the lines that I needed to be closer to the air conditioner, I pulled a kitchen chair over to the area directly in front of the air conditioner, and I sat down with my dinner plate. She made a sarcastic comment along the lines of: “Well, you are just trying to get away from me!”

I told her that I moved because I was hot . . . but there is some truth in what she said . . . and that bothers me. It has left me wondering what has changed with me that causes me to not be able to tolerate her physical closeness anymore . . .

[Continued in the next post . . . ]


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