Gollum’s lesson

It’s cold and snowy this evening.  Hearing sirens, imagining ditched cars, I wipe my window and watch people out in the storm with their shovels and blowers.  I wonder why, thinking that if this keeps up, there will be another 6 inches by the morning.  Maybe they are hoping it will stop soon, or they are better weather watchers than am I.  Feeling very cozy, at least, I am glad to be safe and warm.

It’s going on two weeks since I’ve gone for my daily exercise walk, and more than that since I have picked up a musical instrument, two things that I’ve looked upon as helpful therapy.  Just low mood.  Medicated low mood.  Strangely enough, in yesterday’s doctor appointment, two of the first questions she asked me were “Are you still going for your walks?”  No.  “Have you played any music lately?”  No.  She is taking care of me very well, and is a by-the-book person, no bullshit.  If you don’t do what she tells you, there better be a reason.  She’ll listen, if it’s an honest one.

So, she was really the impetus for tonight’s sudden resolve to get out there and do it.  Put on the long johns, the parka, and the mitts.  Are you gonna take the long route, or the old man’s route?  With puffed up ego that I was able to get as far as my driveway, I said “Hell, it’s the long route, now that I’m out here”.  I finally reach the corner where I would normally turn off for the short walk, and say “Okay, you still have breath, you don’t have to pee, the mitts are warm, so let’s keep going.”  Two minutes more, and I slip on ice, feeling something a little out of place in my hip.  Walk slowly for a bit, seems okay.  Three quarters of the way now, I turn a corner, and there he is:  a large loose solitary dog, standing on the sidewalk, ears pricked, looking very muscular and alert.  I freeze, having been attacked last summer by a similar breed.  I have a tendency to be very Sméagol-Gollum like in dialogue with myself, and tonight, Gollum said “It has been put there as a warning, my precious.  You have gone too far and have thought yourself too great.  Turn around, foolish old man.”  Sméagol meekly acquiesced.

After I’m done with this, out comes the guitar.

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