For those of our readers who don’t know much about Fresno, it’s hot here. I mean really hot as in H-O-T. And this summer has been one of the worst on record, with daily temperatures reaching into the high nineties for the entire month of September. In August, we had only a couple of days where our thermometers didn’t reach triple digits. Today is the first day of October, and our high is predicted to reach 104 degrees. Normally by now we’d be enjoying some of the best weather in the country. Temps in the 80s during the day and cooling into the 50s at night. Instead, it feels as if we’re in the middle of July. All of which adds up to one huge distraction on the writing end. My gardening chores have tripled, our dogs are going crazy from lack of exercise less a late evening swim, and we have zero extra energy for anything outside of getting through another scorching day.
Still, all of that said, it shouldn’t be enough to stop me from writing. I finished the book I started about a year ago and am presently engaged in the joyful process of marketing. That in itself is a post for another day. I mention it now only so I can add it to the rock pile of stress I’ve been carrying around since June, when we began a major bathroom remodeling job. Two months of workers coming and going at various hours of the day (and evening), bringing with them the calming sounds of pounding hammers and buzzing drills. How relaxing to look about my house and see a layer of white dust covering everything from the coffee table to the TV screen to the stove; dust that reappears every few days no matter how often I clean it away. How quaint to find a tube of calking and various power tools cluttered my office, which has the sad fate of being attached to the bathroom in progress. Best of all, my three dogs remain on high alert every minute of every day, ready to defend their home from these noisy offenders. Their method of barking at the top of their lungs every time someone walks by is very reassuring. At least I don’t have to worry about said workers attacking me. Thank the gods for small favors.
In the midst of all this, Jody’s mom passed away. Ruth lived a good, long life, and we are relieved she didn’t have to linger in the hospital or wind up in a nursing home the way many elderly people do. Jody traveled to Wisconsin for the funeral, and came home stuck in the middle of a family feud that has been simmering for the past decade. His mom’s death has escalated this thing to the point where he will be forced to choose a side and deal with the consequences. It’s a no win, sadly.
On the animal front, one of our cats broke her leg at the shoulder. Due to her age and the area of the break, the best and real only option was to amputate the leg. (I’m happy to say Taffy has recovered and is doing as well as can be expected.)
Yes, you say, all of that sounds unfortunate . . . but what does it have to do with writing? Well, the point, as obscured as it may be, is that all our lives are filled with distractions. Life itself is a distraction. The key to overcoming it is to realize that fact and move on. If we are truly writers, we find a way to write regardless of what is happening around us. Getting this post up today provides a small victory for me on that end. Onward and upward I go.