Life in the village

Following Thanksgiving weekend – which as you know spins out the familial immoderation to Monday – I began my cathartic re-entry to assignment and moral imperative by attending this morning (Tuesday) upon Mr. Sam, the  barber.  My appointment (which initially was booked for two weeks ago but I canceled when my endodontist advised of an earlier appointment) was at 10:20 am this morning.  When altering the time I presumed someone had already booked the ten o’clock slot which is my preferred time for no particular reason other than my obsessiveness. When however I arrived at the barber shop (and after maneuvering the car to align it with the yellow lines) I found there was no one ahead of me.  I was swept into motion at the shampoo station and then seated before the master’s mirror for precision upgrading. I told Mr. Sam I needed all the help I can get! I am especially fond of Mr. Sam not only because of his unqualified professional expertise but also because I have been party to some of the difficulty he has had to endure since he first opened his business about the same time COVID-19 struck the globe. I was pleased to learn from Mr. Sam this morning that lately business has been good and that he is very busy. He also spoke glowingly of his son Jude who is about to begin pre-school day care. Mr. Sam’s wife is reportedly also doing well in her studies which I believe are at Algonquin College.

The heightened reinforcement of duties continued uninterrupted afterwards at the local pharmacy located mere steps from the barber shop. There I met with the very reliable pharmacy manager who arranged an appointment two days hence for my annual flu shot and shingles vaccine.

Though my intention had been to take a day off from bicycling today, the extraordinarily pleasant weather today easily encouraged me to rethink the matter. We were soon together on our bikes tooling about the neighbourhood under the brilliant sky and wending our way along the erstwhile railway right-of-way in the caverns of colourful foliage. I remarked how different the views were with the sunlight beaming from the westerly angle in the afternoon unlike the easterly angle in the morning when we normally go for our ride. When crossing the bridge by the Old Town Hall I encountered an ancient friend walking her dogs.  She reported that she had recently moved, the result of having abandoned an alliance with a gentleman whose favour she found did not compete with her pets. We both had a good laugh.  I am uncertain by what ingredient or privilege we have become so evidently accustomed to frank conversation but apparently we have. Neither of us hesitated to lapse into the vernacular when required for clarity.

Subsequently upon return home I parked my steed by the stone wall of the patio. There I shifted the deck chair directly into the sun’s rays, closed my eyes and vanished into blissful somnolence for twenty minutes. I have learned to militarize myself into tranquillity.

It was practically with astonishment that I subsequently set upon my constitutional afternoon motor vehicle drive. Again I am smitten by the smoothness, quiet, stability and computerization of the Lincoln product. The car is so superbly bracing that I find myself again and again debating whether I have any intention of replacing it with a new one. The winning argument however is that decomposition is as much a trait of car ownership as old age. Basically the diminution is inevitable and impossible to ignore. I have at times the momentarily reassuring recollection of my late father steering the long hood of his Buick Riviera about the neighbourhood – or, as he had done on many previous occasions – across provincial boundaries from Upper Canada to New Brunswick. My automotive heritage is indisputably authentic. I do however cling to the overwhelming preference for currency. Of all the “things” I like in this world, cars and technology scream for novelty – unlike for example gold jewellery, mahogany furniture or acrylic paintings. Some things just never change.