Oh, for the easy life. When describing my father, a Distinguished Professor of Mathematics, my mother used to say, “There is a fine line between a mathematician who is working and a mathematician who is sleeping.” My husband, Rick, doesn’t do math, but he certainly works in the same way: easy. (Here, putting furniture back together after our home renovation.)
This week, we’re heading up to Nantucket – and no work at all.
Our home has been in an uproar for weeks, with our contractor and his guys racing the clock to complete renovations in time for my daughter to move back home after college. It’s been a battle with this old house, since every time they fix one thing, something else breaks (the washing machine and toilet have both leaked through to the floor below). Despite the chaos, I’ve fought against any change of routine, insisting on going to the rink as usual every morning, even when our own floor is flooded and any sensible person would stay home to clean it up. No matter what’s going on at home, before I skate, I must eat a banana and drink iced decaf coffee with milk, and while skating, I must wear my favorite black sweater and a double layer of gloves (purple under black). But Rick just relaxes into chaos like a warm bath. If we can’t plug in the coffee maker, he’ll drink COKE for breakfast. And if there’s no table, he’ll sit in the nearest windowsill.
For me, easy-going comes hard. I do keep trying to get mellow — ever since I met Rick, when I was twenty, I’ve worked to be more laid back. I admit, that may be the wrong way to go about it. Until I succeed, I’ll keep grabbing my banana, iced coffee, sweater, and gloves, and heading for the rink.