Home alone …

Being alone for the holidays never used to bother me, but in the past, I stayed away from stores, malls, etc. so I didn’t get caught up in the Christmas spirit (madness?) like I have this year.  Yesterday was rough.  I think more people left their shopping to the last minute than those who shopped in a timely manner.  It was slammed most of the day.  While I was checking people out, however, I saw families, couples, lovers, friends, etc. all together shopping, making plans, laughing, fighting, maxing out their credit cards, trying to use maxed out credit cards, etc.  After I got off work I went to get venison and again, saw a family together enjoying each others’ company.  I stayed with them for about 45 minutes, then headed home to take care of my animals.

I’ve never been much for family, parties or crowds.  I have a few select friends that I spend time with and that’s about it.  Am I truly missing out on anything because I don’t have a huge circle of friends and close family?  Because of my unemployment and the uncertainty for my employment history, I didn’t buy any Christmas gifts this year, but then again, it’s been a long time since I’ve gone all out and really spent a lot of money for Christmas.  I used to max out my credit cards buying gifts for people who probably didn’t remember what I gave them a month after Christmas is over … like so many people still do today.  I started to hate Christmas for its commercialism and I think I still do.  Now that Christmas shopping is over, television commercials are advertising for after Christmas sales.  I have to work tomorrow and I’m sure it’s going to be almost as crazy as it was yesterday.  Does it ever end?

Whatever happened to the days when people made things for gifts?  I’m sure lots of people still do so, but I think they are the minority.  My Landlady gave me a beautifully wrapped basket of goodies including a hand knitted scarf, one of those soft-porn historic romance paperbacks (something I haven’t read in years!), candy, a Christmas cup, etc.  It was awfully nice!  I suppose if I had my head screwed on straight these past months I might have been creative about gifts and made something for people.  I did give out banana breads so I guess I did give some handmade gifts.  I should have done more.

Could have, would have, should have.  I’m not sure where I’m going with this post … I have to wonder though, how many people are truly enjoying the day today or are they doing what they have to do because of their friends, families, spouses, etc.?  Are they happy with their gifts?  Are the people they gave gifts to happy with them?  Are they getting along with the people they are with or is the underlying tension thick enough to cut with a knife?

I did get some good news yesterday.  The paperwork to officially hire me at Walmart was supposed to be in on Tuesday, but it didn’t make it.  They think it will come in by Friday of this week.  Hopefully that will be the case and I can relax a bit about my future.  This morning I applied for a management position at a local Petco.  You never know … if I’m going to be a manager of anything I guess a pet supply store would be more entertaining to me than Walmart would be.

Last night I talked to the one paralegal at my former job that I had been close to.  They are still doing lay-offs and it has moved to attorneys.  Everyone is on pins and needles there, not knowing when they’ll get the call saying they’ve been let go.  With so many people out of work, jobs are going to be extremely hard to obtain.  I don’t even apply to legal jobs any more.  I don’t want to go back to that environment.

I got out of work at 5:30 last night and ran over to the grocery store that is in the same strip as Walmart and picked up a ham and some vegetables to cook today.  I hadn’t thought much about what I wanted to cook.  I considered a turkey, but I still have quite a few jars of turkey stew in the freezer.  I’ll make scalloped potatoes out of the leftover ham.  I have a pot of milk cooling (I heated it too hot) to make another batch of cheese.  It is going to be quite warm today so I plan to spend some time outside working on things, including my cold frame.  I bought the plastic for it yesterday at Walmart.  All I need now is the soil.

Until later …