Wednesday Wandering

The 1667 daily goal might be gone, the 50K finish line crossed, but goodness knows this story is nowhere finished and some of the characters still have their scenes. This rambling is a result of an SVW prompt:


“When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps.” ~Confucius

Tennyson Swan stared at the calendar in his hands. Nothing spectacular about it, he never would have chosen it for himself, not because he didn’t believe in the classics, but because he probably would have picked something plainer, duller. He often kept tracked tasks and time with scatterings of sticky notes or pieces of paper pinned to bulletin boards or emptied envelopes with every message written in code.

Maddison had beamed when she gave him the gift, bought with her allowance! If Tennyson knew his sister, she would have borrowed a page from their parents – two quarters a week, a dime more for each chore. Maddie was too young for most chores and her strategy for storing things was as bad as her uncle’s. Whatever discipline she had adopted paid off for this big gift, he thought.

‘Fr my unkl – lik the mouz that rored!’ – words printed in crayon on a comic strip insert, taped with colorful duct tape. That would have been the only reason why this gift would be worth more than all of the ties his parents gave him (ties he never wore unless he was home for a visit).

Tennyson pushed a collection of files off the corner of his desk, determined to find the poem one of his students wrote for him in class. Ink blots on a napkin gave the illusion of a soccer ball in the corner, just missing the pre-printed squares that could be a goal – fitting, given the poet and the topic. The lower corner of the napkin had a date and a place written, an invitation to a match.

He didn’t make time to do much outside of work. Some nights found him so immersed, he often forgot to eat; the growl of an empty stomach protesting before bedtime. Soups were the silencing saving graces then – something simple to help him sleep.

Napkin in one hand, empty Mickey Mouse covered calendar in the other, he set them both down and rummaged through the mounds of papers to grade, records to enter, lessons to plan and everything else he had allowed to lay claim to his off time. With varying levels of ink oozing from the tip of the pen, Tennyson wrote the first appointment into the new calendar.

(to be continued)