Saturday, August 26, 2006

Breakfast conversations

For many years my husband and I depended on rising early and having breakfast together before the children swamped us. After we found ourselves with an empty nest we still had busy days and it was the one time we could be alone together to talk about the important things, and the not so important things, trade news, ask advice, receive advice (you would understand this aspect of our conversation if you were familiar with my husband) gossip a little, and forge the bonds that have kept us together for 61 years.

Now we are not so busy, and the retirement years are upon us, breakfast conversations are still an important part of our day, but they have changed somewhat in content. They involve a recital of the hours we spent in bed.

Sleeping well - not so well.

No comfortable positions - aching knees.

Mind refused to shut down - didn't sleep all night, just hovered on the edge.

Did you hear the dog woof - did you catch the faint odour of skunk passing through?

Couldn't breath properly, - could it be dust mites?

But after good nights a contented relating of unbroken slumber, and a sigh of relief.

The topic turns to items in the paper which is now spread out before husband. Main priority goes to political topics, and these can engender a fairly passionate conversation, but luckily we are of the same persuation, and the heat is equal on both sides of the table. Eventually the newspaper loses its hold - I go to make breakfast and listen to the occasional comment floating out into the kitchen.

When breakfast is done, and we linger over coffee, then we can look forward to the day.

I have often wondered how boredom can hold sway with so many people? There is so much to do, even in retirement. And such a choice - how will we divide the day to do all the things we want to do. More often, because of the work ethic neither of us seems to be able to shake, it is "how will we divide the day to do all the things we feel it is necessary to do?"

I have neglected to mention the part the little dog, Caspar, plays in this breakfast ritual.

There is the traditional throw and fetch game of ball and the feeding of bits of toast, but he doesn't come in to his own until our daughter arrives for coffee and a visit after her morning job.

She and Caspar have a routine. He sits on his little hind end, waves his front paws in unison, and talks for treats. He used to sing for treats, but Caspar is like the rest of the family, - growing old and losing some of our most endearing charms. He also has a nasty little habit of nipping at toes if they come too close to his sleeping bod and startle him. He is variously loved, liked, accepted or frowned upon, depending on who in the family is expressing an opinion about him.

Well, it is time to do the night-time ritual and go to bed.

Main purpose - to garner breakfast-time topics for tomorrow's conversation!

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