So cold outside. Even the birds haven’t been coming to the feeders like they used to. My cat, Pearl, will sit at the door and wail to be let out, but when I open the door she just sniffs and stares for a bit, then shakes her paw and backs away.
Pearl is a calico cat, but she’s mostly white with tan and gray patches on her face and tail. I think the proper term for her color is “distressed calico.” We have another cat, Max, and she’s calico, too, but she’s much darker. Her proper color is “tortoiseshell with white.” She’s got a white tummy and legs, and her back is nearly black with dark sienna streaks in it. She’s got the typical calico spots on her face, though, with a little black Hitler mustache. Her fur is longer, too, and so soft.
I tried to paint Max once, in an adult ed watercolor class I took a few years ago. I was taught in college painting classes never, ever to use pure black straight out of the tube. Black paint was only for mixing with other colors, and that only as a last resort. But when I tried to mix some blacks to paint Max, the only thing that looked right was lamp black, straight out of the tube.
I took that class maybe six years ago, and that was the last time I ever got out my paints. I keep them handy, with all my watercolor paper and brushes, in Andy’s bedroom, but I never get them out anymore. I wish I would. If I made a list of all the things I would do if I had all the time in the world, painting would be at the top of the list. I would take a sketchbook outside and draw flowers and plants. I would put together an online portfolio and look for freelance work as an illustrator. That’s what I would do.
But I probably won’t. There are a million reasons why, and the biggest reason is that between working and keeping up with the house, there just isn’t any time. When you are young, you are exploring so many different interests and trying on new hobbies to see what makes you happiest. When you are older, you’ve already made a lot of those choices, and it takes effort to break free and try something new, or to justify spending time that isn’t “productive” in terms of accomplishing something useful.
Maybe tomorrow I will take some pictures of Pearl and do a photomanip of her for the daily photo challenge…or maybe I will end up cleaning and getting ready for my husband to invite his friends over for a Super Bowl party on Sunday. I think my decision has been made for me.
Some days I feel like my cat, hoping for a chance to rush outside and chase butterflies, but choosing instead to retreat back inside, where it’s already warm and just a bit too comfortable.