I work the graveyard shift as a baker at a bagel production company in the Microsoft capital of the world--Redmond, Washington. My co-worker is a 49-year-old black woman who loves--no, who lives!--to complain. She has designated me (against my will, I might add) to be her go-to guy for all her rants. Wouldn't be so bad if she could just add a rave now and then...but like the incessant northwest drizzle, my co-worker (bless her heart!) is the proverbial contentious woman Solomon wrote about in Proverbs.
Hmm...I wonder if the wise king once moonlighted at a bagel production company himself? They had bagels back then, didn't they? Sure, they did. Not to mention contentious women. (Note to self: Contemplate a future post comparing contentious women with bagels.)
Anyway, in spite of the full moon last night, I managed to get through the 10,000 bagels without burning a single one.
In fact, I went the whole week without toasting any bagels before their time.
That's a real plus for me. Don't know if it's the ridiculous hours I work or if I have too many things going on in my brain all at once (truly, any rumors about me being bipolar were shattered years ago when I decided to fly off the disorder charts and land in my very own multiple-polar diagnosis). But I digress...
I've been feeling fragmented lately. And I know why.
Just returned three weeks ago from a splendid vacation on Kauai with my wife and two adult children.
Although it rained ten out of the twelve days we were in Hawaii, we had a great time visiting with my family of origin and taking in the breathtaking island sights.
It was a double whammy for me to say goodbye to my mother, siblings, and extended family members only to have to say goodbye to my wife and adult children two days after we arrived back in Washington.
The economy being what it is today, it's been necessary for me to work in Redmond while my wife and daughter live approximately 250 miles away in southeast Washington. (My son attends graduate school in San Luis Obispo and is now officially--poor guy!--a California resident.) My apologies to California residents--it's not your fault Arnold (Call me Terminator!) Schwarzenegger was a better actor than governor. I'm just saying...
But I just love the Eagles' "Hotel California." I really dig that line: "You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave." What the...?
Where was I going with this? I do have a point to make. I think.
I wanted to RAVE about the fact that when I am feeling fragmented, that when I am in the midst of this tremendous angst about how much my life sucks and how very, very much I miss my two families, that when I find myself withdrawing my head into the 10,000 bagels a night because the pain of listening to my female co-worker's rants is just too much to bear...
I have a private place to retreat to.
Better than a vacation.
Better than a million bucks. (Okay, it's well documented that multiple-polar personalities kid themselves. A lot. A whole lot!)
Better than getting into a hot tub.
Better than...okay, enough of that!
My private retreat is...