Not only was I hit with the 10 year meme (thanks Coggy! And, um, I think a few others I'm spacing out on), but seems to be a theme going around these parts, anyway, what with Bon writing this poignant piece and then this one. So this will probably be a short reiteration of my comments to those, but here goes:
1) 10 years ago, I was 29 (gulp), living outside Chicago, in sin with Mr. ABF (who was then, boyfriend). We had a lovely prewar apartment, and our two cats. I was finishing up research for the diss, starting the writing process, working at the nearby university's Dean's Office as an assistant. I was training for the marathon (fall of '98). I was avidly watching World Cup '98 and painted my toenails weekly in the colors of the teams I was following at that moment. (This also served as a weak attempt to make my poor beat-up feet look and feel better.) It was a freakin' hot summer. I felt, truly, like I had my entire life ahead of me, and while not a pollyanna (it was clear to me by this point that my chosen profession was headed straight into the toilet and I'd probably be looking for jobs elsewhere despite my degree), I was quite optimistic that everything would turn out lovely.
I would give up my billion dollars (see question 4), my left tit, drop-kick a puppy, any other completely inappropriate metaphor you can think of to insert here, to go back and just savor in this summer for a few hours. Relish in my body, my entertainment, my mind, my dreams. I don't think I'd do anything differently, nor would I really want to relive the following 10 years ('99, for example, was a bit rough), but just to be: free. Comfortable. Happy.
2) 5 things on to-do list today:
-- bake bluebery bars for book club tonight
-- go to gym
-- write dog trainer email and tell her how it's going (surprisingly well)
-- ask neighbor if she still has divided Iris that are alive and able to be planted in my yard
-- go to book club and hate on McEwan's "Saturday" over a nice frozen cocktail
3) Good for me snacks: cashews, pistachios, peanut butter and apples, pretty much any kind of cheese. Bad for me snacks I could eat until I burst: chips and sour cream dip, chocolate anything, anything baked. I live for a midmorning sweet thing with coffee.
4) Billion Dollars: I'm going to spare you the warm and fuzzy donations and whatnot -- right now I feel like starting my own invasion of Zimbabwe. On the completely material side I'd:
-- buy a second home (beach? mountains? Italy?)
-- move out and reno my entire house at once so the entire thing would be done by Christmas
-- swap out my husband's car for a hybrid
-- buy hybrids for my entire family
-- buy up some local properties that are falling apart and fix 'em up
-- travel, travel, travel
5) Places I've lived
-- born in midwest city, lived there until six months old.
-- Tempe, AZ
-- Mainz, Germany
-- Pasadena, California
-- NY, NY
-- Madison, WI
-- Evanston, IL
-- VA, suburb of DC
-- Philly region
-- quartet (violin)
-- semi-pro orchestra
-- teaching precocious high school kids to write
-- lab assistant
-- department assistant
-- music librarian
-- library assistant
-- assistant in Trust Administration at College
-- planned parenthood
-- word processor for a church
-- various political campaigns
-- assistant in Dean's Office at local University
-- teaching college kids history
I think everyone's done this by now. If you haven't yet, fess up, yo.