It’s A Puzzle

It’s not just a pandemic thing. Every so often, I renew a hobby from my childhood. A Christmas gift from the young miss was finally tackled in Lent. Gambit was of no help. He loves the puzzle cloth when spread out.

When I’m finished for the night, I have a telescoping cardboard tube that I can use to roll up the project and stash out of the way of frisky pets. And the occasional clumsy human.

The young miss was no doubt amused to see me puzzle it out at a snail’s pace:

Admittedly, this one was deucedly tough. I started in March and worked it on and off. My wife was hitting up the home with a cleaning thing and it sat in the bedroom till I got the all-clear for the only space in the house big enough to work–in front of the tv. Still, it took me weeks to finish. I was almost tempted to look at the box–my long-standing practice is to buy a puzzle, stash it, and forget about it. After I dump the pieces out, I leave the picture aside. I get surprised more often than way. The ideal puzzle challenge for me would be to go in totally blind.

Eventually, I sleuthed out the pattern. But I’m done with sandstone.

Last week, I got an easy one:

Knocked this one off in three days. Thrift store finds are cheap, but I pay the price for missing pieces. Two in this case. I give them back to the store with a note.

Here’s the latest, the last one in my to-do collection:

Three-thousand pieces presses the limit of my handy cloth. I’ll have about an inch or two on the margins here. This will be intermediate in difficulty between the other two. This was also a thrift store find, but it was in a factory-sealed box. Unless one of the pets carried off something (which might have happened Friday night to that missing sky piece) I should have a complete picture sometime in June.

I did a 2500-piece when I was single, about thirty years ago. Took me forever. It didn’t really hold my interest, but stubbornness finally grabbed me.

I’m not sure what happened to the puzzle calendar from my daughter’s childhood days. I haven’t seen the box in some years. It might not have made the move to Washington.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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