Happy New Year!
I'm actually way far away in rural NH caring for my dad post-surgery - in essence chauffeur, cook, companion, and watchdog. It amazes me - deeply - how much time it takes to plan, cook, provide, and clean up from 3 meals a day and run the normal errands of a life when its not just oneself one is taking care of - and when you have to drive at least 30 minutes to do anything.
I do like it up here - the quiet, watching the lake freeze, unfreeze, glaze, powder, and crack as the weather changes, the cats getting into each other, cooking for dad, being away from the office, walking in the snow - but I think if I lived here I'd have to build myself a workshop or make a part of the house mine - and have a purpose to each day.
I guess 3 weeks of vacation/care-taking edges you beyond relaxing nothing-to-do-but-what's-right-in-front-of-you towards a questioning of what strings those moments together.
It has been fun as well to see Nugget experience his first snow, his first real time outdoors, and negotiating his first non-littermate feline relationship with my Dad's quite senior cat, Paquita.
Photo credit: Juan Botella, my brother-in-law, took a series of great close-ups of Nugget over the holiday. This is one of my favorites.