Off Day

I had a rough weekend, although technically, I didn't. Sure, I traveled far on Saturday for no reason, and traversing state lines and taking a few trains took their toll. But had things gone according to plan, there would have been 12 hours of walking around blowing into a giant brass instrument in the middle of that journey. Then I would really be tired.

The Sunday gig went much easier, as expected. And, anticipating the weekend would be tough, I'd already put in for a vacation day on Monday from my office job. I'm fairly good at using my days regularly, though I don't know if I've ever taken two consecutive vacation days in the nearly 14 years I've been out of college. I've never had a gap in employment between any of the three jobs I've held, and I usually pair my vacation days with weekends, unless a band gig falls on a Tuesday or something.

Somehow, I have about 7 or 8 days left to use before the end of the year, so I may have been less vigilant this Summer. The months went by very quickly and I lost track. Even when I did take days, I ended up helping my parents with things, such as cleaning my uncle's apartment or landscaping work at my father's lot. So I was determined, a little selfishly, for Monday to be a “me for me” day. My dad, meanwhile, was already suggesting I help my mom repair the frame on one of my uncle's old paintings, mostly because he wanted her to get it out of our dining room.

I slept until almost 10, then popped a movie into my portable DVD player, listening with headphones so the adults wouldn't know the kid was awake yet. About an hour in, my mom knocked on the door, and I braced myself for the work request. “There's an omelet on the stove, when you're ready,” she offered. Well that was odd. And nice. Especially including cheese and fresh tomatoes we'd gotten as a gift from our friend Bill the trumpet player, his way of saying thanks for driving him to all our mutual gigs. The day wasn't off to a bad start.

I finished my movie, and breakfast, and soon enough my mom was asking, “Can you do me a favor?” I knew it. I didn't snap though, and kept my cool. As it turned out, the favor was minor. She was heading out to meet with her knitting group, and wouldn't be home to change the channel on our digital converter box, something we have to do manually if we want the VCR to tape a different channel at preprogrammed times. She couldn't do it because it was still recording another show, but she wouldn't be home when her next show came on. That was an easy enough task, and still left me enough time to get to the bank to deposit a check from my last few gigs, and mail back my last few DVDs at the post office. On the way out, I noticed more outgoing mail, and did my parents a favor without being asked. I was in a good mood.

After the bank, post office, and gas station, I returned home. My dad was staining some wood trim and had failed to read the drying instructions on the can. I helped him figure out why it was streaking and why he should wait a half hour before continuing, then headed inside to watch the True Blood finale while I charged the batteries for my camera. I managed to make it to the beach and some trails for the first time in over a month, where the lapping waves and silence soothed and recharged me. When I returned home, I hung the laundry that I'd thrown in the washing machine before I left, and watched Wayne's World again for the first time in years. Excellent. Party on, MCF.

All in all, it was a perfect day. I got some minor errands done, I made it out to enjoy the beautiful weather, and I relaxed with some good movies and television shows. It's good to have a day off every now and then. A good day off can stave off an off day.

Now if Kanye West could take the rest of his days off, we'd really be in a better place.


Anonymous Krispy said...

Tupac is dead, Biggie is dead, Jam Master Jay is dead, and nobody will take a shot at Kanye?

9/15/2009 3:20 AM  

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