Monday, February 19, 2007

November 21, 2006

We’ve had a string of grey, cloudy days. I’ve been reading voraciously - four books in the past three days. After too many days of lazing around, I finally got motivated to do something productive. Yesterday, for the first time in my life, I baked bread. After Sten ran the generator, I put the dough in the engine room to rise. A few hours later, when the two golden, crusty loaves came out of the oven, I was prouder than I’ve been of just about anything I’ve ever done. I’m not sure my mother or sister would believe it without tasting it for themselves, but it was actually pretty good. Good enough for Sten to call me a magician. Though, I’m not sure whether his statement that “it was all the more incredible for your having made it” was a comment about the goodness of the bread or his surprise that I could actually bake.

In our land-based life, I produced paper, not food or anything else particularly useful. Sten worked, but he also did most of our cooking and most everything else to keep the house going while I simply worked. Out here at anchor, I can no longer make what had been my primary contribution to our partnership - my income. So I’m trying to acquire new skills to be somewhat useful in this new life.

One morning before we left Rhode Island, I was walking through a Walmart, carrying a mop and a bunch of other cleaning supplies, all the while clutching my blackberry, the last vestige of my professional life. I’ve since left the blackberry back in the States and traded it for some yeast and flour. Somehow this seemingly slide back to the 1950’s feels like progress to me, at least on a personal level. It is certainly more delicious than drafting disclosure documents. But I have to wonder whether my father was right - whether I’ll get bored out here without the intellectual stimulation that work provided.

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