Daily Rituals

I’m having this fantasy where I’ll have time for a daily writing prompt. I haven’t really blogged for fun since I left Sarajevo, and I miss it. When I lived there I had automatic posting topics, since I was traveling and living abroad… so now I need some help from the folks at WordPress. I think the reality will be more like 3 times a week (on a good week), but here’s to a… September resolution.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Daily Ritual.”

Think about your day. Select one of your daily rituals and explain it to us: why do you do what you do? How did you come to adopt this ritual? What happens on days when you can’t perform it?

The last month or so has been pretty hectic, and my small rituals have been completely shot. But I’d have to say my morning ritual is my favorite, and the most consistent overall.

I have an infinitely varied schedule, but I can usually count on my morning routine. This generally involves taking Rudy for a walk, often through the woods across from my apartment. <Side note: Did you know there’s a 200-acre wood at the northern tip of Manhattan?> It’s a peaceful start to the morning, and a luxury for someone living in New York City. I get to stroll through a dense forest that doesn’t even feel like it’s near a city. Having grown up in Connecticut, this is a centering ritual I need in order to not lose my mind. Manhattan is thoroughly overstimulating.

I adopted this ritual out of necessity, since Rudy obviously needs to go outside. But it’s become something I enjoy, and miss when Rudy is out of town (on business, naturally… or just at Grandma’s house). We usually take a walk, rinse his feet off in the tub when we get in, and then I make breakfast for myself and The Beast. Lately both beasts have been away, one with a broken arm at his parents’ house outside the city, and the other with Grandma in CT. It’s been kind of nice to have the place to myself, but I miss their furry presence.

Coffee is definitely my favorite part of the morning. I love getting my French press ready, and the luxury of having two cups of coffee come out of one serving piece. I bought my neon green French press in 2008 while I was working at Starbucks, and it has endured countless abuse over the last 7 years. I thought it was broken at one point, but I couldn’t bring myself to throw it away.. good thing, because it turned out to just be a loose part, and easily fixed.

While the coffee percolates, I will check email, read Facebook, and catch up on the news online. I’ll drink out of my latest favorite mug of the week while sitting with my two beasts. The Beast likes to keep cable news on in the background all day, but I can’t stand it. Most of the time they’re doing ridiculous pieces like this: “Tree falls in Bryant Park – Experts say more trees will continue to age, and possibly crack!” Seriously.

I like watching the German news channel DW Amerika, because I only understand every fourth word of what’s going on. It’s fun to figure out what they’re talking about, and listen for words and phrases I recognize. It’s also interesting to see foreign coverage of events in the US, like Obama visiting Alaska. I can get away with it sometimes, but if the Beast is home, I’m stuck watching NY1 or listening to videos from Break.com. His morning routine definitely involves watching stupid videos.

After I pretend the day doesn’t have to start for a while, I will eventually get dressed, shower, and do whatever I’m supposed to be doing to be constructive. It’s always a bummer to put the French press in the sink and admit the morning ritual is over.

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