Driving home from the monastery, I kept talking to Monking Friend about how peaceful and relaxed I felt, like this calm patient person who never lost her temper or broke things out of impatience. "How long do you think this will last?" I asked. She shrugged. "A couple of hours, maybe."
I thought for sure she was wrong. I figured the new peaceful me would last until May at least, maybe even September.
But I did not count on the fact that while I was gone, the kids would build a big snow ramp in the front yard out of all the melting piles of snow, and that the little kids, their fingers cold, would decide to get inside my car, which was nice and warm because it was parked in the sun, and that they would decide the car was really a spaceship, which required them pushing all kinds of buttons, including the one that puts the headlights on. The result was that I came home to a long list of errands that absolutely had to be done and a dead battery. The dead battery alone was not enough to shake me out of my peaceful monking mood. I called my husband at work and asked him to come home and jump me. (His response was so eager and willing, no annoyance at all, that it surprised me until it occurred to me that he had perhaps misinterpreted my request.)
No, the dead battery alone was not enough to push me over the edge, especially since it had the side advantage of luring my husband home from the office. No, the thing that made me crazy yesterday was sitting down at my desk, looking at my computer, and seeing the blank screen of death staring back at me. MY COMPUTER WAS NOT WORKING! Frantic calls to tech support did nothing except give me a headache. In the end, I had to pile my computer in the car and bring it to the computer store, handing it over to a tech guy who assured me he could have it fixed in a few day. A FEW DAYS? Few things in life are as frustrating as handing over my computer to someone who looks like he is not old enough to have a driver's license and who clearly does not understand that he should drop everything, everything, and work on it.
I tried to explain to this young man the significance of my computer: "ALL OF MY WRITING is on this hard drive. ALL OF MY SCHOOL STUFF. All of my e-mail correspondence. This computer is my only access to the outside world."
He shrugged. "You ought to back it up more often."
I watched him lug the computer to a table, where it will probably sit untouched for days. "ALL OF MY BLOGGING FRIENDS ARE IN THERE!"
I think at that point I may have been getting a little hysterical. I think it's safe to say that the new peaceful me that had come home from the monastery just hours before had slipped far beneath the surface of psycho woman. At that point I was imagining all my blogging friends, their heads and gravatars on popsicle sticks, popping up and taunting this young man until he fixed my computer. I began to wish for meaner and more intimidating friends. David hugging a baby? THAT'S NOT GOING TO SCARE ANYONE!
So here I am, without a computer, isolated from the world. I am using the kids' computer right now, but that hardly counts because I don't like their computer. The keyboard is weird, it's got none of my stuff on it, and it's in a room that is littered with the dirty laundry of three boys. I cannot write or even think in this atmosphere. And I am still panicky about losing everything on my hard drive. So please, I am begging all my blogging friends who live inside my computer, to please pop out at that tech support guy and remind him (nicely, of course) that he needs to fix my computer IMMEDIATELY. Because otherwise you are never going to get to see the peaceful monastic me. It may be too late already ....