Saturday, March 29, 2008

Deadlines and flower arranging


The biggest drawback of working for a publication is meeting its deadline.

Now, I am not whinging about either work or deadlines. I enjoy my job and the the newspaper I work for is published weekly. But the one evening a week that I need to work late is the same night that we practice Tea. On a good day, the paper is finished by 7:00 and I'll be home somewhere between 7:30-8:00. On a rough day we still can be working at 8:00. Or later. By the time I'm home I'm ready for shoes-off, sweat pants-on, cocktails and dinner, not sitting seiza and folding fukusa. In the end, though, Tea practice refreshes my weary mind and I'm glad for it. My knees are another matter.

This week's practice -- with Annie, Kristen, Pia, John and myself -- was excellent. I was home at a decent hour and since I had not been able to arrange Chabana that morning as I usually do -- nor had Harvey been able to -- I asked him if he still wanted me to take care of it. He replied that he was going to have one of the other students volunteer to select and arrange the flowers. I pulled a selection of vases from the cupboard and brought in a variety of flowers from the garden. The situation evolved into a workshop, with everyone arranging flowers (except me!). Annie was especially inspired. We put all the flowers in the tokonoma, whereupon Nikko the Evil Ninja Tea Cat selected one of John's arrangements and removed nearly all its petals.

After Nikko apologized to John (in her own fashion, of course), Annie and Kristen coached Pia while she made usucha. John was shokyaku and the rest of us played musical guests while taking turns making tea (except me!).
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