We finished Chapter V, in which Bilbo finds the ring, meets gollum, out-riddles gollum, discovers the nature of the ring and uses it to escape goblins, again.
This is an old house, and when it's not locked, the kitchen door wants to be open. It can open itself only on the coldest of days, when the wood has shrank just the right amount. After reading I went in to get orange juice and saw the door ajar. Just enough for a cat to squeeze through. Outside I go, with flashlight and a bag of treats. It was only a few minutes before she zipped by without a sound. And so, around and around the cold, dark pool we went, behind the greenhouse, through the fence gates (her over them, via tree branches) as if we were playing a game in the dark. No riddles here. The game is that she is the cat and I the fool who follows, rattling a bag of treats and pretending, ridiculously, that she belongs to me. Finally we ended up right back at the kitchen door and when I opened it and the light spilled out, she walked through as if she'd received an embossed invitation. I got an invigorating, head-clearing walk in the cold air and Soosi got her point across. She owns me.
No metaphor here, or lesson learned. It's just what happened before I sat down here to write. Most of the day was spent reshelving books and painting. Working, thinking and listening to music. A quiet and uneventful day for me, a break from worries, both mine and the world's. But I know they're right outside, no matter how I lose myself in pink shades, brushes and textures. And I know there's no escaping them because, speck that I am, I'm a part of it all. And so are you.