Triumphing Over the Mundane

Friday was a day without class, but John and I have ourselves on a pretty strict time regiment for getting work done. It’s a little necessary for two people who are excellent procrastinators whose responsibilities are, at the moment, primarily self-governed. I can’t speak for John on this, but for myself, I find that my current workload doesn’t allow me to get away with what I did at USM. If I try so sit down to do the reading two hours before class, I will not be prepared. End of story.

All the same, it’s good to have a day off from reading and classes, which I (more or less) took yesterday. And yesterday was a particularly delightful day.


It started off slow. Very slow. I looked up from my book at one point in the morning and realized that it was 10:30, and I was still in bed, in my pajamas. I was shocked—even on a day off, it’s been quite a while since I stayed in bed that late. This apartment is north-facing, though. We get no direct sunlight, which means that it feels like early morning all day long. Not great for motivating us to get going.

As soon as we got up and at ’em, we trekked over to our local library, the Hanon-Allston branch of the Boston Public Library. It’s wonderful. Buried in a less than appealing corner of the city, the building is a haven of open space, comfy seats, and an excellent fantasy section, with a view of leafy greenery in the back. I was hoping to get involved as a volunteer with a literacy program of some sort, but their strongest program is an ESL conversation table for adults. I’m planning on going to see what it’s like, to see if I can be of much use, but I’m not sure how much I can contribute. We will see.


On the way back from the library, we stopped at the community center, again looking for volunteer opportunities. The woman at the desk in the chaotic space didn’t know much about what was needed, or what programs were offered, but she gave me an application to fill out. I’ll take that back in Monday—hopefully there will be someone who I can question about what the center does, and where I might be able to help.


It’s funny, trying to find volunteer work in a new place. Aside from the Reading Buddies program that is in part organized by the HGSE, I haven’t had much enthusiastic response from the places I’ve tried to get in touch with. This may be a result of the organizers of these places having way too much to do, but I would have thought there would be enough need for an extra pair of hands that I would get some response. Oh well. I’m sure if I’m enough of a squeaky wheel about wanting to help, I will find some place that I can get involved in soon enough.


Aside from trying to forge our way into the community, John and I also managed to find our bank (which has awesome customer service), figure out the laundry situation, and clean several pounds of broken rice. These sorts of things will cease to feel like a triumph soon, I’m sure, but for the moment, as we’re figuring out where to find everything, simple errands take twice as much time and energy as they need to. I’m enjoying the triumph while I can : )


The final triumph of the day was a delicious batch of saag with chicken. It was mostly a triumph because I didn’t have to go out and buy anything to make it. We had a can of spinach that was who knows how old (predating our marriage, at the least), and it was taking up space. Our pantry had enough spices and yogurt to do the rest. I remember trying to cook Indian food for the first time, and feeling overwhelmed by the vast amount of ingredients I had to buy. Three or four years later, I can do (some) Indian dishes as easily as spaghetti. Triumph.

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