Thursday, my big boy dog and I headed out for our customary walk, and stepped into a work in progress. The project began three months ago, involves five square blocks, and requires teams of city workers to cut holes in the streets. These holes are the size of Volkswagens. For safety’s sake, the workers cover these holes with vast steel plates at the end of the work day. They tack down the plates with ridges of asphalt high enough to ruin any SUV’s suspension. They heap their barrels and caution tape at the curb, and circle the whole area with those inevitable orange pylons. Result? It ain’t pretty.
Many of my neighbors are none too happy about this. But what can they do? The project may be time consuming—and it may be ugly—but it’s necessary.
This is a work in progress.
Well, on Thursday, one of my neighbors did something about this work in progress. He celebrated it. He strung faerie lights between the pylons, festooned them with red glitter balls, crowned his creation with Fosters beer cans, and voilá! As my big boy dog and I admired my neighbor’s handiwork, it came to me. Whether we’re wrestling with a manuscript, pounding the pavement in another round of job hunting, or pursuing our weight loss goals, we all have works in progress. At times, these works may not be pretty. But they’re necessary—to our wellbeing, to the wellbeing of those we love, to the wellbeing of our community.
Really, as we struggle with these projects day by day, we ourselves are the true works in progress. We’re not always where we’d like to be, not always as we want to be, not always as we hope to be—but we’re working on it. And that, my big boy dog and I decided, is certainly worth celebrating.
Do you celebrate your own work in progress? Does your celebration include faerie lights and Fosters? How do you celebrate where you are while keeping your eye on where you’d like to be?
Sunday, December 4, 2011
Work in Progress
Posted by Nichole Christoff
Nichole Christoff is a writer, broadcaster, and military spouse who's worked on-air and behind-the-scenes writing, editing, producing, and promoting content for radio, television, and the PR industry across the United States and Canada. Her latest thriller from Random House Alibi is THE KILL BOX and it's a Library Journal "Best Books 2015: E-Original pick." Nichole's fiction has won both the Romance Writers of America Golden Heart and the Helen McCloy-Mystery Writers of America Scholarship. She has been shortlisted for a Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense, too. She loves nothing more than getting lost in a good book . . . unless it would be trying to write one!