After that I went to Trader Joe's to pick up a few things, then back to the apartment before my toes could get too numb. There was some sunshine today, but it never got very warm, and the evening was quite chilly. It is very cold now, and heading down to freezing later tonight. Tomorrow is to be a slightly colder day, but a slightly warmer night. I haven't decided if I will try to go anywhere tomorrow. It would probably be wise of me to try to get to Safeway, but I'm still holding out hope that I might get a ride Monday or Tuesday. It isn't very likely, but it would be so much better than trying to make that trek on the bus.
As I've been coughing tonight I just bumped the thermostat up to 70 degrees. The apartment being small and decently insulated it shouldn't cost too much to get it a bit warmer than it was. Soon I'll be getting under my electric blanket, but I'll still have to breath the air and I think it will be better if it isn't quite so cold. I might have a shot of vodka with honey and some lemon-infused soda water. That sometimes helps quiet my cough, and the vodka certainly won't keep me awake, though I haven't had any trouble getting to sleep for the last few nights. I'll read for a few minutes and start to loose track of the words, and usually nod off with the book open in front of me. I wish I could have done that when I was younger and insomnia was the bane of my existence. On the whole, age bites, but it has its advantages.
by Jack Gilbert
He lives in the barrens, in dying neighborhoods
and negligible countries. None with an address.
But still the Devil finds him. Kills the wife
or spoils the marriage. Publishes each place
and makes it popular, makes it better, makes it
unusable. Brings news of friends, all defeated,
most sick or sad without reasons. Shows him
photographs of the beautiful women in old movies
whose luminous faces sixteen feet tall looked out
at the boy in the dark where he grew his heart.
Brings pictures of what they look like now.
Says how lively they are, and brave despite their age.
Taking away everything. For the Devil is commissioned
to harm, to keelhaul us with loss, with knowledge
of how all things splendid are disfigured by small
and small. Yet he allows us to eat roast goat
on the mountain above Parakia. Lets us stumble
for the first time, unprepared, onto the buildings
of Palladio in moonlight. Maybe because he is not
good at his job. I believe he loves us against
his will. Because of the women and how the men
struggle to hear inside them. Because we construe
something important from trees and locomotives,
smell weeds on a hot July afternoon and are augmented.