Sunday, October 28, 2007

Signs that living alone is getting weird...

I just took a bath with a bucket.

Here's a peek into my world -

I've been volunteering with Recycle a Bike lately resurrecting old bikes and teaching other people how to do it, too. Today I went on my first Ride Club with them. Recycle-a-bike is great. A herd of 10-to-14 year old kids and various and sundry grown-ups rode from Long Island City to Prospect Park and back again. 23 miles - that's a lot even if you're not a kid! It was lots of fun, but a really long day... I left my house at 9 to ride to the ride, and didn't get home until 5.

Living alone is still so new to me that it feels like a project. As I rode home through the park I planned my evening out - eat dinner, take a bath, then watch tv and work on knitting squid number two, photographing the tricky moves as I go this time for the pattern write-up. My head is bursting with projects lately - squids, octopi, starfish, kraken, then finally some mammals ... most everybody on my Christmas list is getting knitted softies of some sort or another this year (sorry for the spoiler, relatives, but it's not like it would suprise you!), plus I'm cogitating on playing along with NaSweKniMo, and making some mobiles, and finishing the baby quilt I started for Mathea before she turns one, and I promised somebody a poncho, plus I have this idea for sewing a shower curtain, which would also involve decorating my brown-tiled bathroom with pink everything, except it's impossible to find a pink toilet seat that doesn't have hellokitty on it, and I wish I could find time to cross stitch, because a nice subversive sampler would go great next to the kiki smith poster...

And also I have plans for this bucket. It's not just any bucket, it's an old Japanese water bucket my mom picked up at a shrine sale when we lived in Japan. It made of pieced wood, and it's in fine shape, but there are some gaps where the wood pieces meet. But a couple years ago I heard a story on the radio about the people that make New York's ubiquitous water tanks - they leak like crazy for the first couple weeks after being installed - the wooden tanks suck up the water and swell, and that's how they hold together. There's something I love about this - form and function mixed together where function comes first - you have to do the verb to become the noun. I've been keeping the bucket next to the tub to remind me to see what happens when I get it wet.

So I set the bucket under the tub spigot as I filled up my bath. But the cracks between the wood slats are big enough that it really won't hold any water at all, and then what am I to do with this soggy bucket? So the bucket and I took a soak together. Here's what I learned: Thirsty, dried-out water buckets make a really great noise when you put them in the bathtub with you. If you've ever forgotten to water a spider plant for a month or so and then remembered, it's a sound kind of like that - an alive, squeaking, rice crispies kind of sound.

At some point it will probably bother me that I'm multi-tasking even in the bathtub, but for now I'm really happy.

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