Spring Break

During college, spring break meant hurrying through a Thursday afternoon mid-term exam and skipping school on Friday to start the party early.  I was either excited to go home and ride colts, or anticipating a relaxing week of working at a downtown Chico western wear store and suntanning every afternoon. 

As a substitute teacher, spring break means “Oh, bleep, a week of unpaid vacation.”  Once I reminded myself there was absolutely nothing I could do about that fact, I decided to write a stockpile of articles and set up interviews; conduct myself as a legit freelance writer for one solid week. 

A person has to be a little bad on spring break, though, so I began the week by partying until 4:00 AM.  For some reason, I had an unusually good streak of luck shooting pool – I sunk 4 balls in a row, including a combo.  Even though it was a really easy combo shot that a minimally trained poodle could’ve made, one of my guy friends saw my performance and refused to play me because I was “too good.” 

I protested, insisting it was a random streak of luck and not to worry; things would change and he’d beat me pretty easily.  I must’ve drank too much gin to make a persuasive argument, because he handed his cue stick off to another guy, who beat me.  All I can say is: I told you so.

Once I realized the folly of excessive partying (I was reminded by my inability to drink water, stand upright, walk, or eat until 3:00 PM the next day), I settled in to work.  I wrote 3 first drafts the first day, typed up a real estate description, emailed the home folks, secured 2 more story assignments from the local paper, interviewed a saddlemaker, and read part of Arnold Rojas’ These Were The Vaqueros to research an upcoming article. 

I also baked candy, cookies and granola bars.  I walked 8 miles one day – I walked with Tilly when she got off work, and again with Katie when she got off work.  I made a Mexican beef stew, shot pool last night (sober, I’d like to add), stacked firewood, and have watched more reruns of The Nanny, Everybody Loves Raymond, and That ’70s Show than should be legal.

I’m sort of wondering how I ever had time to work.  I thought I’d be inventing things to do to fill my days, but now I’m considering setting the clocks back at lunchtime so I can have more hours in the day.  My most pressing task is finding a store in Elko that sells the new Glamour magazine.  It’s out – I’ve seen it online!!!  I’m hooked on the dose of feminity, style, makeup advice and girl talk in between those covers, which greatly balances out the whole living-in-the-sagebrush-with-no-Victoria’s Secret-or-Sephora deal for me, and really irritated that it’s already April 7 and not a single store in this town has it on the shelf.  It’s like I live in a remote Northern Nevada desert town or something!

Today it is snowing.  It’s cozy in the house, though, and I’ve got second drafts to write and Don Williams playing on the radio.  I think I’m gonna make it.

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