It isn’t so temporary anymore.
Days before the scheduled flight, an urgent desperation came clawing up through me. I had to make that Christmas crossword puzzle. Setting aside far more important things, I created a grid, blocked out my “inside joke” solutions, and then hit the same barrier that always blocks the way to a personalized puzzle: nothing fit the remaining space.
This is normal. The more pre-specified answers there are in a puzzle, the more challenging it is to make the grid come together, but that’s part of the fun. Typically when I hit this barrier, I back up, remove the personalized answers, and try again with another configuration. After seven or eight attempts, I end up with a workable grid.
It wasn’t an ideal way to work. The resulting puzzle was far from perfect. But by the time I had to leave for the airport, it was done. And on Christmas Day, I got my coos of excitement, I smiled my ear-to-ear grin, and I felt like myself.
“Ring the bells that still can ring.
Forget your perfect offering.
There's a crack in everything.
That's how the light gets in.”