Yesterday I wanted to buy things. I wanted new pillows, new decor, new lights, new shoes for The Chief, new clothes for myself and a pair of hot black boots.
"Why do I want to buy things?" I said to Lucy, realizing that just a day earlier I had made a promise to my sister Page I'd join her in scaling back our lives. The desire of my heart is to forsake the vicious cycle of wanting. Wanting, getting, wanting again--with no needing in sight.
But, sometimes these wanting urges have a way of being useful. A quick remedy, like comfort food, that helps me get to a better place. Meanwhile, I am hoping that someday acquisition won't be needed for self-security.
"You are nervous." Lucy explained, "I am too. But I don't want to buy things, I want to eat. I think you should shop all day and I should eat all day."
This conversation happened mid-morning after voting. My dad was running in a tight race for Provo City Mayor. There is a nervousness on election day that gives us all the shakes-- us relatives of those brave enough to run for public office.
"I am going to at least buy the boots." I told her, turning to Zappos.com to zap my nervous energy. But just as I was about to press "buy" I was called by the Deseret News for an interview about blogging. I am horrible at interviews and I couldn't possibly buy boots and answer questions about blogging at the same time. Are you crazy?
When the interview was over I returned back to my online shopping but couldn't find my credit card. I searched high and low and finally gave up. Lucy and I had lunch, shaky fingers eating fries.
During nap time I seized the opportunity to go back and buy my lucky boots. But then I got caught up in the nowhere lands of the internet and forgot all about it. In realizing this I thought maybe it was a greater indicator I wasn't supposed to buy the lucky boots after all. Three strikes, you know.
After naps The Chief and I picked up niece Lindsay and her friend Dixie for a short segment with KSL about my Provo Blog. If you think navigating media functions is a typical day for me, you are right. I mean, wrong. Did I say right? We were meeting the crew downtown for a trip to the Provo Bakery. As I pulled up to Lindsay's house, I noticed a lot of cars at my grandma's house across the street.
"Is everyone okay over there?" I asked Lindsay in the car.
"Grandpa Don died." She told me.
Our Grandma Clark (Dad's mother) had married her fourth husband, Don in 2001. They lived a very romantic senior citizen life together as gardeners and lovers of life's pleasures. Lately he had been feeling weak, and yesterday after what seemed to be a good morning, he passed away. As my family tells it, he took his last breath after conversing just moments before in the kitchen. He was in his nineties and very deserving of such a tranquil exit.
(On Halloween night he gave The Chief and me candy at the doorstep, and encouraged us to take more than our obligatory two pieces. My kind of man!)
When I got home from the taping I bought the boots. Good for me! Good for me?
As the sunset my stomach set too. The votes were about to start coming in. My parents were hosting a party at their house for friends of the campaign. I showed up early to see how things were going. The were so many energies colliding at that point, nerves for the campaign, peace for Grandpa Don, worries for Grandma, hunger for the catered dinner.
I went home and watched the results come in with Chup. In Chup's vast repetoire of emotions (I married an actor, remember?) nervousness isn't a major player. I do nervousness enough for the two of us. His coolness helped calm my chattering teeth.
It was a close one.
This morning as I woke up and saw the blue sky colored between the tree branches, I felt empty. The election was over, Grandpa Don is gone and not much too look forward to . . .
. . . except those boots.
*photo taken by Patrick Smith for the Daily Herald