A new week has begun and I am preparing myself for the usual onslaught of work-related issues and challenges. At the same time, I am adjusting to the new place and am even more happy with it as each day passes. Since Monday is always my long day at work and I won’t leave until 1630, I will be taking Hal to his job after I finish and then picking him up late this evening. The sun is out and the weather will be warmer today than it has been in quite a while, so I will have plenty to do to keep myself busy.
One thing that has started to enter my mind is the Beetle. It is still running very well, but there are some maintenance issues that will require time and money in the future and I am beginning to think about exploring the possibility of trading it in on a newer model used car. I do not see the need to even think about a brand-new car because they are simply too expensive for my taste and budget. This would be a difficult decision for me because the Beetle has never let me down, but it is also 15 years old and that means age is creeping up on it regardless of the best efforts to preserve it. If I can make a deal on something else that I like, it would be the first time that I have ever traded in a vehicle that I felt what I guess would be called affection for. The Beetle was obtained at the end of a disastrous relationship with the previous vehicle that cost me thousands of dollars in maintenance and the countless hours of aggravation and stress that the previous vehicle caused me.
I have taken a few preliminary steps in exploring a trade for the Beetle. I am looking at some possible vehicles and there are a few that have caught my eye. If there is time this week I will probably go and look at a few of them to see if the personal appeal is there for me. It will be a process that I will take very carefully and without rushing into things.
Another issue that is weighing on my mind is the upcoming departure of Nicola and her son Connor for Scotland. After she dropped the bombshell last year, I was not surprised by the decision but now as the time for her to leave is less than a month away it is really starting to sink in for Hal and I. When they leave, it will remove a big part of our lives here. Although we don’t see each other frequently, there has always been the comforting feeling that they were about an hour away, and the knowledge that we would always see them around the major holidays. I know that her life was thrown into turmoil when her husband Don died. Don was an old Navy buddy of mine who I still miss dearly. Nicola threw herself into working on the house and raising Connor and Brianna, who is now at Towson University in Maryland, but her decision to return home to Scotland was not totally unexpected, but it did come as a shock when she simply announced it without any prior hints being dropped.
I suppose that the topics of the Beetle and Nicola are related. Each represents something or someone who will eventually be departing from my everyday life. I am sad to think about losing the Beetle, but it is only a car and can be replaced if that is the decision that I make. Nicola, on the other hand, is a true friend who is making her own decision and I cannot do anything but help her and support her.
The Beetle has no definite timeline for a decision, while Nicola will be departing exactly 3 weeks from today. It is possible that the Beetle will leave my life first, but that is a constantly shifting time as compared to Nicola whose departure is fixed. The Beetle is with me all the time until something changes, and I take it for granted. Nicola is not here and that makes the time spent with her that much more special.
Life is a series of people and things what arrive and depart from our lives on a random basis. We have more control over some things and people than others, but it still gives us a sense of perspective when these things happen to us. The key is how we learn to adjust to these changes and how we keep on living. We cannot stop living because of change, change is what makes life interesting and challenging for us all.
Spartacus has made an appearance on top of the couch this morning. He normally hangs out with Hal, but occasionally he ventures out to be seen and admired. He has the correct approach to life, he lets it come to him rather than worry about things that he cannot control. I envy him his casual approach to life as I listen to meetings that really don’t affect me in any tangible way. Spartacus has this elegant quality just like his brother Hal The Cat, and his sister Stevie Nicks. I wish that I could spend my time each day just enjoying life like the Stooges do.
I will be taking Hal to work soon and I must get ready. I don’t plan to go anywhere while he is away, but that can change. I will write more later this evening.
Hal is at work and I am back home in time to take out the trash for pickup and to get back to writing. I was tempted to go and look at a few used cars, but that can wait because the traffic is awful and I would not want to be late picking Hal up from work. I also found out that 2 strings on one of my guitars are broke so I will get that taken care of while Hal is at work. I will either have it repaired while I wait, or I will leave it there and pick it up later in the week. Since Guitar Center is not far from Hal’s job, it isn’t a big concern about getting to him on time.