Wednesday, December 31, 2014

What I Did During Winter Break

I've been binge-watching Downton Abbey these past two weeks.

Normally, I don't have time to watch TV. My days are full of kids, housekeeping, food preparations, family chauffeuring. Nights are when I work.  But during winter break, everything got quiet (except for the kids' voices -- it's loud with everyone home). There has been so much less to do (except for holiday activities -- there was that sweet busy-ness). And come nighttime, I had some real, actual free time. I hardly recognized it.

We just subscribed to Amazon Prime (for holiday shipping deals). Suddenly we have access to all kinds of media we hadn't before, so I finally got to try out Downton, which I've been hearing about for years as a must-watch. And -- oh! -- I was completely taken in. Absorbed, transfixed, rapt. It's been better than a movie because it is divided into small parcles I can handle without staying up too late. And with four seasons to catch up on, the story just goes on and on. One episode ends and then there's another -- so many conflicts and resolutions, highs and lows, and I never have to turn the last page. I don't have to say goodbye. Now I'm friends with the characters; I'm committed to the plot. I don't want to put it down.

The girls have been asking, "Mama, how many episodes of Downton Abbey have you watched?" They're incredulous. They know I don't really watch TV, don't really approve of all that watching. Oh, that attention-sucking, energy-feeding screen. They know how I feel.

But winter break is ending; the holidays are are almost over. Soon it'll be time to leave off gluttony of all kinds and return to the usual routines. That's okay with me -- routines are safe; I know my place in things. But I've enjoyed the break very much. And I'm not done with Downton Abbey. I'll find some time to watch it.