Dixie Darr

Casting Spells

In Books, Lent - Season of Change on March 23, 2017 at 2:41 pm

Lent – Season of Change, Day 20

I hate the word retired. It makes me feel useless and irrelevant, which is probably why it took me so long (four years!) to settle in to my nonworking status. The first year, I went to a museum or some other cultural experience at least once a month and out to eat 5-6 times a week. Boredom with my life without work made me a little frantic to find things to do.

Finally, though, I have embraced the pleasures and slow rhythms of retirement, settling into my quiet life of reading, writing, going to church and the gym. My restaurant visits have decreased to 2-3 times a week and may dwindle even more. Museums and plays don’t really interest me anymore. Every once in a while, I decide to shake things up and add something unexpected to my schedule.

That’s why I decided to participate in an Over 60 Spelling Bee today. I’ve always been a good speller, maybe because I read so much, although I haven’t competed in a spelling bee since I was about twelve. As the day came closer, I did a little studying, looked up lists of most misspelled words (misspell is one of them) and scanned a book of spelling rules which just confused me. I gave up and reminded myself I was doing this for fun, not to win some tacky little trophy.

That didn’t prevent nervousness or knots in my shoulders. It wasn’t too bad. I came in 7th of about 30 people, so I didn’t embarrass myself. The word that took me down was reveille. In the end, I’m glad I did it although I don’t know if I’ll do it again next year.

I have about 30 library books checked out right now, not one of them about war or I might have known how to spell that word, and another ten or so to pick up on Saturday. I need to stay home now. Those books aren’t going to read themselves.


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