One of the best things about Sunday and the New York Times is that I can give my undivided attention to one thing, without feeling at my back all the myriad tasks I have to fuss about during the week. Focus, that's what it is, and what a valuable blessing it is, and nice to know that I am still (sort of) capable of it. So why am I writing my blog? Because it's a given by now and I feel driven and hounded on the days I don't do it, like last week. Guilt. Ever thus.
Last night I was focussed, so much so that I forgot an evening engagement I had agreed upon with a neighbour - fortunately a close neighbour, because when she called half an hour after my appointed time of arrival, she was close enough I could run downstairs (on the elevator) and show up only 35 minutes late. What was I focussed on? Well, forgive me, but I'm happy to say that I was working on my current book and forgot that I had an appointment to do something else. That doesn't happen often because I am very careful about my commitments. I can still remember the first time I ever mislaid a promise - years ago now, when my chidden were still in school and I was supposed to pick them up to take them to the dentist. I was working on a book, my first novel, never published, and lost track of the time. Suddenly, just minutes after they left me after lunch, there they were, three hours later, coming in the door and asking where I was. Upstairs, writing.
The next time, years later, we were all in Stratford by then and I was working on a play (later produced), and I missed a party at my very next-door neighbour's. How could I not have noticed the cars and the traffic and the voices? I apologized that evening when I realized too late what I had missed, but she never spoke to me again. How fragile and tenuous a blossoming friendship can be.
That was then, this is now. Now I do not (consciously) offend anyone with my hermit-like behaviour. And today is Sunday, welcome Sunday, and I have the New York Times.