I shall preface this with the sad fact that the hubby and I can no longer take vacations together.
Aaaah retirement, that time of enjoying each others company and doing things together.
Unless you retire to a small working farm.
While it is very easy to leave cats for a period of time it is nigh on impossible to leave goats and chickens. Trying to find someone to care fora flock of chickens and 7 goats - one of them requiring a milking once a day - is laughable. So we take separate vacations.
But it's better than no vacation.
And trust me, you need a vacation away from caring for the farm. It's an everyday proposition no matter the weather, no matter how you feel. The animals NEED care. So hubby was just away for his vacation and he took his longest one yet this time; he was away for 8 days. It happened to coincide with some of the coldest weather we have had so far this year. (I have told him this will NOT happen again.) He also chose to go somewhere where we were out of touch for 5 of those days. It was the longest period of time we have gone without talking in the entirety of our relationship - just short of 32 years.
I didn't like it.
Neither did he but he did enjoy his vacation and that is what was important. He still has his part time job as fire chief in our town and it is stressful so he does need to get away.
I did learn a fair bit in his absence, especially since he tested the heater the day before he was leaving and found it did not work. I really was going to have to learn to build a fire. And so I did.
1. I learned to build one hell of a fire and I stayed very warm in his absence despite temperatures that dropped to close to zero at night. One morning I woke up and it was 59° in the house. That is chilly.
2. I learned why "fowl" entered the colloquial in the way it did. Chickens are the most disgusting animals. I do not like taking care of them. I was VERY happy to hand them back to him.
3. Freezing weather means frozen water and a lot of it. Ice is a pain in my tail. Hauling water is a pain in my tail. Goats drink a lot of water and they like it hot which is a pain in my tail. I really already knew this but I'm complaining here today and I'm allowed to do so.
4. I have some very good friends. They made sure I was OK. They called so I had someone to talk to. They shoveled when it snowed. They hauled water for me. Very good friends and I thank them.
5. When left to my own devices I go to bed at 2 AM and I woke up every single morning at 8:18 AM. Exactly 8:18. EVERY MORNING! Why? Clueless. I went to bed tired and slept pretty well. I did not feel tired. I have weird rhythms.
6. I usually don't cook for myself when he's not going to be here for dinner but this was far too long a period to subsist on popcorn and toast so I made myself real dinners. With vegetables and everything. It felt good to do that for myself.
7. Staying up until 2 AM I found that there is some seriously BAD TV on. Amish Mafia?! Honey Boo Boo (OMG! That poor child) and don't even get me started on Toddlers and Tiaras - those mothers should be committed. I soon went back to Law and Order. I've seen them all but they didn't harm me in the same way as these other shows.
8. I was really, really, REALLY happy to talk to my husband when he called me. The sound of his voice was magic in my ears. And he drove straight through to get home instead of taking the two days he planned. I was really, really, REALLY happy to be able to hug him.
We are back to our schedule now and I go away in May. I will not be out of touch so at least we will be speaking while I am gone and I will get to hear his tales of trying to milk a goat with tiny teats with his huge hands.
That's half the fun of my going away.
The other half is getting back home to his arms.