5.13.2008

Lady of leisure

I’ve abandoned the designation ‘hausfrau’ in favor of a new term—lady of leisure. Not only does ‘lady of leisure' offer a nicer tonal quality, but it also more appropriately describes my daily routine and general outlook in this new and charmed life.

Yes, it true. I’m a bit of a princess—a nice, easy-to-please princess, but one nonetheless.

(I suspect you already knew this somehow.)

Maybe if I had a kid or two strapped to my hip, the term ‘hausfrau’ would apply. In this case, I’d have daily obligations, real work to do. But as it stands, because Max is so easy going and makes no demands on my time, I spend my days doing whatever it is that pleases me. If I desire a clean house, then I make a clean house. But if I’d rather have the dust bunnies grazing on the floor and a few loads of laundry piling up in the corner, so be it.

Back in the States, I woke up to an alarm clock, caught 15 minutes of Matt Lauer, before I rushed to the office. Today I wake up to sunshine and dawdle for a hours before I decide how I want to spend the remainder of my day. It’s like I’m living in some delightful, parallel universe. For me, there are only a couple of downsides to the life of a lady of leisure. One, you have already heard about—my expanding and softer waistline. The other issue I have only just realized after our recent weekend in the Alsace region of France.

I’ve lost the “wow factor”--the easy excitability that comes when you travel to new places and discover new things.

What I mean to say is the wine producing region of of France and the towns and cities that we visited are charming. But when Max asked me how I liked the area, I could only muster an “it’s nice.”

It’s nice?!?

For most, Strasbourg and the surrounding area would be better than “nice.” It’s a quaint, lovely, even beautiful area. Yet somehow--maybe because as a lady of leisure I live in ‘quaint and lovely’ and also frequently travel to ‘quaint and lovely’--I’ve become desensitized.

In other words, I’ve lost the “wow factor.”

And this makes me a little sad.

This weekend, we travel to Rome. The next week, it’s off to Athens. A trip to Prague follows soon after. And while I am looking forward to the excursions, I hardly feel excited.

What’s wrong with me?

19 comments:

running42k said...

Lady of leisure, I like it.

How can you become blasse about that scenery?

Diane Mandy said...

Good question!

G in Berlin said...

Well, I think Rome is fabulous and I think you will too. But perhaps you need to insert some routines into your life so that you can be happy with a diversion from them? Take another Deutsche kurs (mine started last week), a group one, so that you have to go and may meet some people, and enjoy the time off when it ends, so you need to rush to get things done. Are you taking another salsa class? Try a cookingclass, either German or French or Italian...Btw, I don't love Prague, so no help from me there.You can't live life in a state of constant excitement: I find New York quite ordinary until I am somewhere else or seeing it through the eyes of a stranger.And our trip to Venice was cancelled and now it looks like the German's work will interfere with the replacement weekend in Amsterdam, so I will live vicariously through you...

Jul said...

It's a hard job, but somebody has to do it...

Jill said...

I know it's time to move on when I lose the "wow factor"... though your vacation sites are a little more picturesque than mine. :) Though if it will make you feel better I'll send over a few photos of chaos in near the Gaza Strip. Seriously.

Jean Ann said...

Hey Diane,
Take it easy on yourself. Your body is still recovering, and so is your spirit. Let your experience be what it is, no sense in feeling bad about feeling bad, if you know what I mean.

When I get like this, as we all do, I tell myself "it is what it is", somehow this helps take the pressure off and let me be however I need to be.

Have you ever thought of volunteering? Always makes me grateful...

Paige Jennifer said...

Sometimes we get so conditioned to what we know that we fail to see the intimate details that make it special. I drive to work day in and day out. But the other day, with my car in the shop, I caught a ride. Everything looked so different from the passenger seat. And that's all it took - a little shift in perspective. Maybe you should visit Newark, NJ for a week? That would probably make Europe wowsers all over again.

Charlotte said...

Ah, lady of leisure ... I love that! As to the wow factor and Athens--it's not all it's cracked up to be, really. Make sure to take a boat trip to the islands, though. And make sure to stay far away from the Plaza Ormonia at night (unsavory).

Gosh, what would I give to walk through Strasbourg again!

Snooker said...

I bet that you are feeling just a bit as though you aren't accomplishing anything... you need to stop that. Find something to do which gives you a feeling of accomplishment... start projects, take a class, volunteer, etc.

I strongly suggest giving yourself a great challenge. Your perspective tends to change when you can view the world with different eyes.

How do you get those new eyes...? Challenge yourself, maybe even go so far as to scare yourself. Take a chance, go out on a limb, do something which you would normally NEVER consider. Then don't look back.

karey m. said...

we were just driving to the dead sea for an overnight stay...must've passed ten camels, countless herds of who-knows-what crossing the roads...

the girlies don't even yelp anymore. not even esme.

i mean, come on! CAMELS?!

Mimi said...

You're taking things for granted. Easy to do when you're surrounded by lots of wonderful old buildings and churches and fabulous scenery. Everything starts looking the same after awhile.

Here's a trick. Try looking at each day as if it is your first one there. What's new? What's different? Do I like what I see? Why? Why not?

Pinch yourself. Tell yourself you may never return. Does it matter to you? It may, it may not.

Some suggestions:
- read some books on the women who explored the world when it was "not the thing to do."
-- find an interest and explore that interest in the new place you're visiting. For instance - wine, beer, fabric, perfume, flowers, whatever interests you. I always look for the local brewery. A friend looks for the local sewing shop and tries to buy quilt fabric.
-- read about the places you'll visit before you get there and find what makes you curious. It may be something other than the tourist sites. I always try to eat/drink the local specialty.
-- Once you've found your "likes" build something creative from it. My sewing friend makes "travel" quilts. I save beer mats and decorate my walls. Another friend collects pottery from her travels and "built" a mismatch dinner set. Tons of ideas -- find one to suit you.

utenzi said...

Even if you're not impressed now, Diane, I suspect years down the line you'll look back upon this period in your life and be impressed. These will be great memories to have!

Sarah said...

Can I say wow for you? Because I totally want to.

Sizzle said...

I like the sound of that- lady of leisure. I want that someday. :)

kenju said...

If you lose the wow factor in Rome, then you need a doctor!!

patches said...

I wouldn't say you've lost the wow factor, but that you are becoming more comfortable with the region you identify as home.

It's good to enjoy the place you call home. Don't confuse comfort with easily unimpressed.

Jennifer said...

Perhaps it's because you've been through so much in so short a time. Whatever it is, I hope you regain your "WOW" equilibrium, because you are living the experience of a lifetime, my friend. You know that saying, "smile and the world smiles with you"? Maybe if you drop your jaw and say "Wow!" a few times, you'll start to really feel it again. ?!

gunfighter1 said...

By the time I lived in Germany for three years, much of the feelings of "wow" had been replaced by feelings of "home".

The boy from the dense suburbs of northern New Jersey had become a man of the world... and I loved it.

LZ Blogger said...

My gosh... how many of these posts did I miss? ~ jb///