Learning New Things

Now that we are stuck at home, we have time to learn new things: card games, dance moves, how to empty the electric pencil sharpener, and more…

A number of people have retreated to their kitchens to do some new learning. There are aspiring bread-makers throughout the country, and flour is flying off grocery store shelves almost as fast as toilet paper. So far I have stuck to my favourite recipes, except for biscotti, but a few days ago when it was rainy and dreary, I tackled a cookie recipe that called for 13 ingredients, an hour of chopping, and another hour of arm-breaking stirring. It was a good way to get some arm exercise and make 96 cookies at the same time. Multi-tasking!

Many of us are learning more about technology, especially social media. In our need to stay connected, we are circulating jokes, videos, stories, exercise routines, travelogues, news clips, and chain letters, non-stop, like a virtual merry-go-round. If we abandon our ipads for even an hour, to make some bread for example, we come back to a screen full of messages. When we are bored with that, we can facetime our grandchildren. When Agnes facetimes us, she carries us around the house, upstairs and downstairs, showing us her latest projects. When we get to the piano she lays us down so we can study the ceiling while she plays her latest favourite piece. When Ben calls, he shows us his new painting project and then knocks over the paint water. Oops “Daddy!”

Slowly we older people are stretching our minds even further – to live-streaming, Ted Talks, podcasts. This online connecting is a great skill for us. As we become less mobile, for whatever reason, we can still be in touch with the world. We’re learning other skills online too, such as how to sew personal face masks. I decided to give one a try but I had no material so I looked around the house. An old dishtowel had horizontal stripes which made my face look fat. A piece of faux fur looked comfy but it was too hot. My husband Peter’s T-shirts were too holey plus he didn’t want to give them up. Finally I had to sacrifice one of my summer tops. But maybe we’ll be stuck inside all summer anyway and I can just stay in my pyjamas…. Noooooo!!!!!

In the bathroom we are learning new grooming skills too. Who knew it was so hard to cut your own toenails? When we aren’t as flexible as we used to be, it’s a long way down there to the end of your feet. And of course the hair – too long and too grey. Not a good look. So in desperation one day, I got out the hair dye kit which I had purchased in a moment of bravery, and read the pamphlet carefully. The disposable gloves didn’t scare me at all since I wear them to the grocery store every Monday at 7:00 am. But the part that said: ” dispose of any unused product immediately to avoid danger of exploding and harmful projectiles”? Well that was a bit unnerving.

I updated my will, put on my disposable gloves, and headed down to the laundry room in the basement, where I figured an explosion would do the least damage. And today I am alive to tell you that things worked out fine: I am a blonde again and the house is intact. Sometimes you have to take risks when you want to get ahead.

Now I am trying to think of another scary, I mean exciting, learning skill to tackle. If you have any suggestions, please share them.


PS stop looking for a photo – there isn’t one. I mean, did you really want to see my overgrown toenails?

8 thoughts on “Learning New Things

  1. Hi Sue
    Your attitude is full of life. This can be a time of opportunity, of reaching and stretching, and feeling like human beings. Inventors, creators, social beings. I read about Newton in the time of plague, when Cambridge was closed. He retreated home and did some of his greatest work there. I have never been busier. And, I pulled my old road bike out of the basement – it’s a pretty serious bike — took it in to Spoke-O-Motion where I got it. They tuned it up and its still a speedster. Now I can get the blood flowing, see my world from under the sun and sky. Be well yourself. 🙂


  2. Hi Sue, you are funny as always😀😀. Have you tried cutting your hair yet??? I have had a few comments from the family who have observed my grey hair from above or when I bend down😂. You were brave to try a home dying product. How did it work out? Hope you are all keeping safe and well. Luv M.

    Sent from my iPhone



  3. Well, you are right about the learning curve at this time. I’ve never used a purchased hair dye but it was that or wearing a hat until forever, so I bought a box and put Reinhart to work. With a bit of supervision, he did an amazing job. Old dogs can learn new tricks. Let Peter give it a go next time.


  4. Hi Sue…it is a viral merry-go-round. I spend half my day looking at videos my friends are sending. However, I
    now have the cleanest house ever. And John and I are playing dominoes every night. It is now 7-6 and I hope
    to beat him tonight. Gardening is a pastime these days and walking 3 miles. I can’t wait to go golfing soon I
    hope. Stay safe…Love Ruth


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s