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Day 243 — Winter

WinterI don’t hate many things, but I hate winter. My body was not designed to withstand such blasts of cold air as I get in Washington.

After high school, I practically eloped to Florida with my tiny sundresses and bikinis. To me, Florida was bliss. No long underwear, no bras, no ski caps.

I left Florida and came north to have a career, but now that my career is on life support, I am left to wonder again about the path not chosen.

I could have been a country club wife in Plasticland, with too much booze to drink, too much money to spend and too much time on her hands. When I was 20, the thought was abhorrent.

Now, however, I’m an urban gym rat with an ex-husband who alternates between surly and sweet, a boyfriend who checks in from his home planet, kids who talk back and a woefully inadequate supply of booze and money.

Whatever free time I have goes into dithering about my situation. Being Ann in Plasticland doesn’t seem like such an evil choice anymore. At least it would have kept me out of the cold.

Here up north it is winter everywhere, not just indoors. The pace of work slows way down during the winter. People seem content to nest in their offices and cubicles, heading out now and again to gather office supplies.

They all arise about the same time—noon—and forage in the refrigerator for the food they stored there earlier. No one is very ambitious. I blend in, of course. There is no upside for me to stand out from the crowd. If they’re going to hibernate, then that’s fine with me.

My love life is also a wintry mix. I’ve achieved a rough equilibrium between things that can never co-exist—the residual mess of my failed marriage with a man who cherished me but couldn’t support me and an emerging relationship with a man.

I rarely dabble in online flirtations but almost never talk on the phone with anyone, much less meet up. Seldom do the online conversations last more than a few exchanges, except if I send him my bathing beauty photos in which case it goes on longer.

I like the attention.

When a man, however far away, lusts for me it cheers me out of my winter funk. My top fantasy, of course, is having one man who both loves me from the very depths of his soul and who cares what happens to me.

I might make some changes, but not now. It is winter, nothing is happening, and I’m cold.

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