I am currently living alone in a two-bedroom apartment, waiting for my husband to join me at the end of March. I spent the month of February with my friend and her husband in Delray Beach but as everyone knows, all good things must come to an end. Or that universal truth, fish and guests smell after three days. Time to move on.
The days before moving were hectic. My daughter was visiting from Denver. We had spent three days in the Keys. I have a self-imposed deadline of submitting my Huffington Post blog for Friday publication. There had been Internet problems at my desk with the pool view. Every afternoon between two and four, I would lose my connection. But this past week, I couldn't get on the Internet at all. Paradise is not always what it seems. I tried moving to the dining room table, but that wasn't copacetic.
All was not lost; I could write the blog without the Internet and deal with uploading it later, when there might be a brief Internet blackout interlude -- whatever that is. In other words, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. I woke up at 6 a.m and finished my blog Inspiration in Key West by nine. Then, just for the heck of it, tried the Internet. No luck. I watched that little wheel spinning around and felt anxious. It must have been some residual corporate anxiety left over from my days in the cubicle. All those meetings about goal setting and "the process." I hated that. So I went shopping with my daughter.
We returned at four to find the Internet still down. I tried to give myself a break. I could miss a deadline once in awhile. It's OK. But then I heard that nagging voice within. "If you're going to succeed at this writing thing, you have to keep your deadlines." A little while later, I tried again. Success. I was on the world wide web, traveling the information highway. Thank you, Al Gore. I logged into HuffPost and uploaded.
Please let me get the hyperlinks set.
Don't crap out on me now.
Yes, it's working.
Damn, it's five thirty!
I'm not sure if anyone will see this until Friday, which means it possibly won't post until Monday.
It's OK, you got it out on Thursday, Sheila. Good job! It's great being your own boss.
Friday morning we were up and out the door. I got my daughter off to the airport. Then, it was back to the house in Delray to load the cars with the meager furniture I scored for free from a penthouse in Delray and off to my new digs! It didn't take long to unload. We ate some Chinese takeout and then I was alone for the first time in 28 years.
I checked my email.
My Huffpost posted.
Things are looking good.
Another pat on the back from the boss.
I haven't lived alone since 1986, when I had an apartment in York Harbor, Maine, near the beach. I was there for six months until my husband, then boyfriend, whisked me away to his apartment above a garage in Rye, NH on the beach.
I looked around the mostly bare apartment and thought, What next?
I went out to the store and got a coffee maker and coffee. An essential item. I can't start my day without two cups of caffeine. When I got back to the apartment, I set up the coffee pot, made the bed and unpacked my clothes. That took all of 40 minutes.
OK, what next? I poured a glass of wine and went out to the patio. I saw a white heron and numerous ducks crash landing into the pond. That lasted about twenty minutes.
OK, what next? Comcast had been here earlier in the day, so my computer was good to go. The Internet connection here is amazing. I decided to work.
What started out as checking email and writing a few pages for my second book turned into a love-fest with Pinterest. I had checked my Twitter account, which led me to a HuffPost tweet about using Pinterest to sell your self-published book, which then led to a six-hour marathon session of setting up six boards on my account. Check it out.
I was downloading pictures from my iPhone. Googling poets and songs from YouTube that had inspired me. Beach houses with awesome porches. This site is like crack cocaine! I was addicted. At 1 a.m., I finally crashed into my king size bed, alone, and slept like a baby.
The next morning, I woke up at six realizing I forgot to get coffee filters and didn't have a shower curtain. I went back to the computer and Pinterest and started a fashion board with clothes I would wear if I were 25 again, living back in that apartment above the garage in Rye, NH. By noon, I was getting a headache from lack of coffee and desperately needed a shower so I headed out to find these things along Congress Street in Boynton Beach, where every chain store known to man exists. I got coffee filters at Publix, a shower curtain at Kohl's and because I couldn't handle making my own coffee at this point, a large cup of Joe and a spinach and bacon souffle at Panera.
I have another 22 days before my husband joins me. I am experiencing living alone for the first time in a long time. It's a challenging adventure and I'll keep you posted on what's next. Right now, I need to get back to that Pinterest account I'm working on.
Follow Sheila Blanchette on Twitter: www.twitter.com/SheilaBlanchett