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Susan M Phillips

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A Billow in the Hand is Worth Two Any Other Day
by Susan M Phillips   
Rated "G" by the Author.
Last edited: Friday, February 29, 2008
Posted: Friday, February 29, 2008

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This was actually a blog, but I've been advised by a very poetic lady to put it into an article. Enjoy my musings.

Yesterday was a slightly confusing day. I woke up quite certain that it was Thursday and went around doing Thursday things. I didn't discover my mistake for quite some time. Not until one of my children telephoned and we started to discuss the weekend. She mentioned Friday and I said: "Don't you mean tomorrow?"

Mum, today's Wednesday."

"That's not so bad," I said, beginning to cheer a little, "Your sister and I have got an appointment at the dentist on Thursday, which I had assumed was today, so we have a day's grace."

An hour later my other girl hurried into the house. "Don't you think you should get ready;" she enquired, "we have to be at the dentist soon."

"No, I reassured her, today's Wednesday. Our appointment is tomorrow."

"Yes it is Wednesday, the day of our appointment." She fished the appointment card from her pocket and showed me.

That was the beginning of a double day, slipping between Wednesday and Thursday and trying to keep bemusement at bay.

Actually, I blame Tuesday. Tuesday was so full of surprises, it's not really any wonder I lost track of time.

As most days do, Tuesday began for me when I woke up. It being a surprising day, I opened my eyes to bright sunshine and a nice brisk breeze, rather than the damp, chilly Tuesdays that normally occur in February. Perfect billowing weather. I love a good billow, don't you?

I stripped the beds, pushing the sheets and pillow cases into the washing machine with three eco balls - clever little things that take the place of detergent to clean without polluting.

Thanks to the way the eco balls work, the washing was done super fast and I was soon pegging three washer loads outside on the line, folding larger items up in half to avoid them dragging on the ground.

Pegging washing seems to be becoming a lost art. Sheets, especially give scope for beautiful billowing if pegged with little sagged areas along the top to allow the wind in, making the fabric puff out like the sails of a great ship. You have to make sure that where it sags on one side, the sheet behind is pulled taut. Alternating taut and slack ensures that, even if the wind changes, air will have access to the inner surface of the sheet from either side, speeding drying and pushing out creases. Lovely. I'm expert in getting washing dry and crease free without recourse to that torture instrument commonly known as an iron.

Half way through this rather pleasant task the phone rings. It's someone wanting to book me to talk at a major event in Wales, a fee and all expenses. Great! I can choose my subject and we discuss the options, deciding that dowsing will offer scope for an interesting hour that won't clash with anything else already arranged. I've written books and articles about it and have taught so many people, it's going to be easy to fill whatever time might be required on the day, which can change suddenly if someone pulls out or falls off the stage. We take each other's details, addresses, mark diaries and so on and say goodbye. Smiling, I go back outside to finish the job I started.

So, there I am, just pegging the last couple of things out and planning to check the house over for rubbish in preparation for tomorrow's bin collection, when I hear a call from the front gate and there stands my pal Claire and her three year old son. Great, I think, just in time to join me in a cup of tea. Admittedly I hadn't planned to stop quite yet, but I tire easily and was ready for a break. In any case, we haven't seen each other for weeks.

We sit and chat as her little one plays happily. He's exhausting, but fun and I don't mind him keeping me busy, even though I know I'll pay for it the following day. Wednesday, though is clear and I'll be able to rest all day.

While they're with me, the post arrives with a letter full of more good news. A few minutes later the phone goes again. It's the garage where my car is having its annual MOT test (legal requirement in the UK to ensure all cars are safe to be driven on public roads). I'd had a bad feeling about it and was rather surprised when the voice at the other end of the line tells me they only had to replace a couple of light bulbs for it to pass. Smiling, I make another drink, find the little one a snack and we chat some more. Soon after they depart, leaving me smiling and filled with pleasure at all the good things that have happened over the course of the morning.

Things start to go a little off course at this point. I realise we're short of bread and so, when I pick my car up, decide to drop in to the supermarket before heading home. This plan goes to pot when number one son rings my mobile and asks for a lift into town. Not to worry, I think, I'll swing round and pick him up. I can get the bread while he does his errands.

The whole journey seems to go wrong from then on. Insane drivers pull out in front of me, stop in difficult places and generally try to persuade me to crash. I drop my son off near his bank, arranging to meet up after I've parked. That's fine, but when I reach the car park I realise that my concession badge is back at home and I have to put money into the meter. That would be fine too, except I'd given all of my change away to a busker the last time I was out. No problem, there's a shop just across the way that sells something I need. That will break the bank note that sit alone in my purse. There's no queue, what I want is on the shelf. All great. Magically, by the time I get to the counter, a collection of people have gathered around the check out and there's no assistant in sight. Very aware that I face a hefty fine for not paying for my parking I start to worry. Finally the woman returns to her station and the queue subsides. All is well. No fine, no real problems, but, by now, I'm fairly exhausted.

Happily the lucky atmosphere of the morning returns and things start to go right again - apart from the homicidal drivers who continue to seek me out on my way home. No matter. I got home and collapsed exhausted into a chair.

After all that, small wonder I was confused by Wednesday. Today has been Thursday all day and, because I did all the Thursday jobs a day early, I really did manage to rest.

Good thing too. All I wanted to do was sleeeeeeeeeeeep.

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Reviewed by Cryssa C 3/4/2008
Yeah! to whomever told you to add it as an article... Methinks it might have been my sis...hee,hee...
At any rate, when I read this as a blog I fell in love with it. I wanted to comment... because you see... I have this aversion to Tuesdays and this whole thing made me laugh because I would have told you that you had a typical Tuesday, which is why I hate Tuesdays! hee, hee...
Reviewed by Charlie 2/29/2008
What an incredible write! Smart Lady, to suggest you post this so we can review! Smart, smart, poetic lady.

So here's my review: I love it. I love that we get a picture of who you are-- your fabulous sense of humor, and your fine, fine writing style. I think the first half of this piece is plenty publishable. You should perk up the last bit a piece, and sub it to Good House Keeping, or other such mags. Good luck with that.

Again, awesome write! --Charlie
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