Today’s morning walk featured gentle rain, intermittent breezes and downed leaves on the mountain road. We got home before the deluge. As usual, Heathcliff loved the smells, exercise and treats, but only tolerated the wet. For a black lab mix, he’s uncharacteristically unenthusiastic about water. Freya, on the other hand, swims like an otter and dunks herself in mountain streams – and for the past two mornings also ended up in the shower. She’d found something wonderfully stinky in her ramblings, something for which I’m hoping she’ll lose enthusiasm.


This past Saturday, after delivering Keith’s homemade apple pies to the church for Sunday’s pie sale, we attended the British Car Show sponsored by the Shenandoah Valley British Car Club. Set up in Ridgeview Park in Waynesboro, British car enthusiasts showed their much-loved classic cars. I’d never paid much attention to cars beyond reliable transportation, functionality and maybe design and color – there are some ugly cars out there! But it was a joy to watch folks show off their treasured restorations of engineering and life-style – roadsters, rallying and even weekend teatime from the trunk of a 1955 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud with electric pot for boiling water, folding table for cups and cookies and a mirror for checking your makeup.


The weather was beautiful for walking around, but Keith and I were more interested in visiting with his sister Kelly who was there with her husband Chris (his 1963 TriumphTR4) and other members of his family and friends. Family meetings are more rare without a homestead or family gathering place, so we jumped at the opportunity so close by.

I thought about my enthusiasms, how I spend my leisure time. Reading, writing and anything related don’t really count because that’s my job, although I’d give up writing if I weren’t enthusiastic about it. Leisure – I guess I’d have to say visiting family and friends and exploring the ways people live, today and in the past – enjoying other people’s enthusiasms – and art and music and theater and cooking and gardening…

God times and nature walks with the dogs don’t really count as leisure either because they’re non-negotiable. And although I’m a dog enthusiast, wet and stinky dogs? Not so much.

What are your enthusiasms?


  1. Carol Cutler

    I enjoyed hearing about your rich enthusiasms, Carol. For me today, it was being outdoors for a hour in the cooler autumn weather with my lab mix, Buddy. Then having a couple hours writing time and reading your very helpful comments on my recent work (thank you).
    Please tell Keith I enjoyed many hours in 1960-1964 in my first husband’s Austin Healey and we went to many events like you two did on Sunday. I loved driving it. What pleasant memories your blog post brought back!
    Carol Cutler

    • Carole Duff

      Thanks so much for your comments, Carol. Cool weather, walks with a grateful dog, writing, reading, driving a fun car and socializing with people who share our enthusiasms – life it good. See you soon at the next writing group meeting. -C.D.


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