Sometimes, you need to close the bar. I applaud the states who are doing so, while still hoping for cocktails when I go out to a restaurant for the first time since the start of this pandemic. Adult beverages are part of the fun and they reduce Covid anxiety. We decided on a restaurant that has a large open air deck with a scenic lake across the road. We decided to go at 2:30 in the afternoon to avoid the both lunch and dinner crowds. We chose a day when no rain is expected. Naturally we will wear masks until seated.
These are minimal adjustments.
I thought flower shopping with Al would be better than going alone, a good adjustment, shifting some of the heavy work onto him. I was excited about not having to lift fifty pound bags of dirt. We bought petunias in red, white and blue for the front steps. I popped them into decorative pots, to be properly planted another day, while Al vacuumed the loose flower debris out the car.
Our larger urns, for herbs on the deck, were still full of last years’ dead leaves. The dried lavender still smelled like heaven. I pulled the withered plants out and popped in new lavender. Shortly after that, problems arose. I have a little gardening spade. If Al could just pick up the big bag of dirt and slowly fill the pot that would be great. He, however, was still vacuuming.
Al (I think I mentioned) is meticulous in all he does. But I convinced him to stop vacuuming the car and come over and give me a hand. I knew how I had to do this job alone in years past. Having him help would make everything easier. Eventually he came over and did the heavy work while I fussed with the plants, patting them into place.
What else? he said, eyeing his shop vac with longing. I gave him a list of what we needed to do, including him taking the large filled urns ten steps up to the deck. He looked up from the driveway, where we had unloaded and were planting, dropped the tool in his hand, and said “Call my committee man!”
I laughed. Al was in a union all his working life and he’s used that sentence before. Then he leaned against the garage wall and waited, arms crossed. And he wasn’t laughing. “That’s what I would do if I was at work. You call me away from the job at hand (I assumed he still wanted to vacuum some more) and then you tell me to do this, that and the other thing, and I can only do one job at a time!”
I didn’t remind him that he often watches television and reads his iPad at the same time, I just said “Shhh. The neighbor” as his voice was a bit loud. He settled down and we worked on the second urn together. He got the urns up to the deck, placed not where I would have, but I wasn’t going to press my luck. Retirement, like the pandemic, is an adjustment. For both of us.