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I feel lost. I canít log on and write my 100 words. Iíve emailed two other writers and heard back from one who wrote ďheís never seen this happen before.Ē Iím going with the flow and will write these daily and hopefully when things are up and running I can post them. I wonder what would happen if the whole computer systems went down? ďWhat would our lives be like?Ē Technology rules our world. We are so dependent. Iím going through withdrawal and this is only one day. You canít take things for granted.
Labor Day weekend is here. Earlier today, the neighbors packed up their car with gear and off they went with their two boys. Most likely a trip to the lake or camping. The last hurrah before the start of school. I never did like the end of summer. Wasnít excited about school starting and now married to a teacher. Heís not thrilled about the school year either. The routines and patterns are so ingrained in our psyche, canít seem to move past them. With all that said, how will I make the most of this long weekend?
Everyone seemed to be having a yard sale today. Cardboard signs posted all over the island with words written "Big Sale Today", arrows pointing down the road. I'm a sucker for a good sale. What bargains can I find today? What interesting treasures? But now I'm selective about what I bring home. For every "new" item I bring into the house I let two things go. That way we won't have clutter because I hate clutter. I'm learning to live with less in my life and it feels good to follow that path. Turns out I didn't buy a thing.
By the end of last summer the three of us sat on the lawn chairs in the backyard taking in the evening sky; sometimes no words were spoken for periods of time. We just watched and listened. We imagined we were Native Americans living on the land and we gave ourselves names. We decided my husband would be called "he who talks too much". Our friend was "all knowing one" and I was "woman who sees". We each had strengths to bring to our circle that complimented one and other. The simplicity of the evening offered a sense of peacefulness.
I've been laboring most of the day despite being Labor Day. My husband and I started off getting three truck loads of alder that we'll use for firewood this winter. A friend had some downed trees on his property and offered them to us. We'll never turn down free wood. A bit of hard labor lifting the rounds into the truck is worth all the effort. When it comes to staying warm in the winter I want to heat our home without going broke. I've come to appreciate what it takes to heat with wood and not ever be cold.
Never heard a word since that last visit. She just disappeared into thin air. No phone call, card or email. Just poof, gone. How does someone go through life behaving this way? I thought I knew her well but somehow I was wrong. Was she a black hole just waiting to create chaos in my life? I'm asking myself those quetions a year later and I know I'll never get an answer. I need to tell myself I'm better without her in my life. She's found someone else to suck dry. Today, I can turn it over and be grateful.
Driving north with a U-Haul full of my belonging, moving from the city to an idyllic island surrounded by water. I never would expected to stay as long as I have. The friend who I knew when I moved here as since remarried and lives on the coast of Maine running a B&B. Another friend who drove the U-Haul with me has recently died. The life changes of marriage, new jobs, birth, death, embarking on a journey. Wherever you land, there you are. Change comes from within and that's where the real work begins. I'm beginning now.
Langston Hughes wrote this and I repeat it often:
"Birthing is hard,
dying is mean,
so get yourself a little lovin
I first saw this over fifteen years ago on a placard while riding a SF Muni bus during National Poetry month. The quote was so poignant for me back then and I remember it still. I can only imagine Langston Hughes had a hard life during the depression and spoke from his experience through his writings. Write what you know and the rest will follow. Good advice.
Overheard on the street today. A mother to her twenty something daughter.
"You should be looking for some kind of job right now, not your ideal perfect job but just any job."
The daughter has probably heard this conversation a million times.
Guess what mother, right now we're in recession and the job market is limited. Do you think your college graduated daughter wants to flip burgers, be a checker at Safeway just to appease you? She'd rather be sleeping at your house and eating your food.
Hell, who wouldn't want that?
I've been telling my husband I want to write humorous 100 words. I've been saying that for weeks now and can't seem to make anything happen. I rant about this or complain incessantly about nothing. My outlook is so pessimistic most days nothing seems funny to me anymore. All of it seems so serious with our day to day chores, bill paying, work schedules, politics, blah, blah, blah. TIred of the same old shit just a different day. How to tap into the creative juices to let my imagination run wild. Why not just try it and see what happens?
She was in her 70's, a gray haired distinquished looking woman shopping in the drug store. Figures, I had to be the one to glance up just at the moment I saw her slip the prescription bottle into her purse.
I didn't think she was stealing it maybe figured she forgot what she was doing.
Until I saw her walk out the door.
Hell, the medication probably cost her a bundle. Who knows but I chose not to say anything to the clerk as I was paying for my purchases. Maybe I should of.
I've been switching gears to release the useless, negative thought patterns and replace with more positive ones. Here are some I found.
"The conscious brain can only hold one thought at at time. Choose a positive thought."
"Creativity is maximized when you're living in the moment."
"A daily hit of athletic-induced endorphines gives you the power to make better decisions, helps you be at peace with yourself, and offset stress."
"The world is changing at such a a rapid rate that waiting to implement changes will leave you 2 steps behind."
I came home from work and my husband was napping in bed. When he got up he told me "he can't do his job anymore, he's depressed and doesn't want to work." As a teacher who can blame him? I certainly couldn't be in a classroom with a room full of eighth graders trying to teach English and Social Studies.
If we could we'd sell our place, our belonging and take off on new adventures. We talk about it all the time but doing it is another thing. I really don't want to wait until we both retire.
We were planning to meet for dinner but something told me he wouldn't be on time. It was just my intuition. When he left the house in the morning he seemed distant. He told me he was distracted by the work meeting later in the day. I shrugged it off and pretended it didn't bother me.
Throughout the afternoon he sent a couple of text messages. He was looking forward to seeing me at 7pm. I couldn't grasp the news when he didn't show up. There was a reason why he was late. My world slowly fell apart.
Rhonda was about to get what she asked for. She wasn't sure if she deserved all the attention. It had been years, almost a decade since she had that first dream. It was within her reach now. The only thing that could stop Rhonda was her jealous sister, Luanne. They hadn't spoken in over two years. A small petty disagreement ensued at the last family gathering and neither one was willing to forgive the other. It was time to pick up the phone and resolve it once and for all. Enough of the old grudges and resentments. They were family.
We were in the back field picking blackberries in the late afternoon light. Her mother and aunt are visiting and they wanted to pick berries. All of us picking and gushing over how big and ripe the blackberries are; filling the many empty yogurt containers they brought with them. We were chattering away about various topics and enjoying the task. Moments like these make me appreciate why I live where I do. I couldn't see myself ever living in a big city again. I've tried it and have no desire to return to the lifestyle. I'm connected to this land.
The girls were giggling underneath the bedspread. I could hear them from the living room but I didn't have the heart to tell them to stop. Even though it was way past their bedtime why not let them play some more? It reminded me of sharing a bedroom with my sister for most of my childhood. Our twin beds side by by side with matching bedspreads. I don't remember having a choice in the matter. We just had to share. She was messy and I was neat. Kinda like Oscar and Felix. We both put up with it for years.
The wind is blowing outside and the air is cold. Just a week ago it was over 80 degrees, warm and sunny. The short summer season has come to an end. The reality of cooler temperatures with rain has returned. Get ready for another Pacific Northwest winter. Fire up the wood stove and prepare for the power outages with a backup of candles, matches, bottled water and propane. There is nowhere to go but ahead. The changes of the season are therapeutic for the soul. An inward journey of reflection and a healthy dose of hibernation. Hunker down and enjoy.
In his anger and frustration he threw the cat off his lap. He didn't realize she had been sleeping for the past twenty minutes and within an instant he was up and out of his chair. The cat pounced on the carpet and ran off into the other room. The inablility to control emotions without losing it. The cat didn't do anything to piss him off, nor did the dog, the tv, his boss or me. He needs to act like a grown man not like a teenager. Just remind him to treat others with respect. It'll be much better.
A know a woman, a local store employee who won $250,000.00 on a scratch ticket. That was two years ago and people were thrilled for her. Her life didn't change much. She kept working the same job, paid off some bills, bought herself a new winter's coat.
Last week she won playing a different lottery game. She matched four numbers and won $10,000.00. How lucky can one person be? Apparently she's got some good money karma coming her way. Wish we all could be so lucky. What does it take to win like her.
Look around everyone is taking photos with their phones. Everywhere you turn someone is documenting the event with their hand held device.
I started taking photos while I was in high school. My first camera was an Olympus OM-1 and learned how to roll my own B&W film, develop it and spent hours printing photos in a darkroom. I remember the first time I saw the image appear in the developing bath as my B&W photo came alive. That element of photography has been replaced by digital. The technology has rapidly improved or has it?
My maternal grandmother was obsessed about having a clean house. Nothing was ever out of place in her modest home. The walls in the hallway were covered with white sheets so that my grandfather wouldn't leave his handprints on the painted walls. Furniture covered in plastic to preserve the upholstery. There were plastic runners on the carpet. Practically everything was covered in order to keep it clean. The refrigerator door handle was even wrapped with paper towels and held in place with rubberbands. She went to great lengths to keep her home immaculate. She wasn't hurting anyone by her behavior.
We stood and admired the scenery. He put his arm around me and said "look what we created?" Without the effort and stamina this whole thing wouldn't of happened. It took others to pitch in and do their part but the bottom line we made it possible. The overral sense of pride and reassurance that in order for something good to happen it always takes hard work. That's what I've heard since I was little. You can't get nothing for free and why should we? The satisfaction comes from perservering and sticking with it. Do something well, it pays off.
I missed calling my little brother on his 50th birthday but I did get it together to buy a card and mail it on time. He's the last of my four siblings to turn fifty and with a recent divorce behind him this past year I'm sure he'll be celebrating. I was happy to visit with him this past May and catch up. He took me to one of his favorite restaurants and had fun talking over drinks and a nice meal. We were no longer kids fighting with each other. Just a brother and sister enjoying being two adults.
Yesterday part of the afternoon was spent learning about biodynamic gardening from a couple who have been practicing it for the past fifteen years. Biodynamics preceded organic gardening and the basis came from the teachings of Rudolf Steiner.
It has elements of hocus-pocus but the practices somehow make sense to me and I want to learn more. Filling cow horns with manure and burying them in the garden over the course of the winter. Or mixing flower elements to manure and making barrel compost. Stirring, spraying and using nature spirits to grow food. It has powerful intentions.
Go check out Planet X on youtube. Just some wacky theory that an unknown planet will collide with Earth in 2012. One guys research is certain we'll see destruction to the earth. After viewing his five part series he's pretty convincing. The fear factor is out there and will keep intensifying with all kinds of crackpot theories. Is Planet X just another one?
No matter what happens in 2012 we'll have another presidential election and maybe that will cause Planet X to collide with Earth. Only fear will induce chaos. Planets striking us, change in government. Can't wait...
In the perfectly formed pattern I spotted the flock of geese flying overhead. The weather has changed and instinctively these migratory birds know it's time to fly south. But for me I don't have the luxury of going south even though I'd do better in the warm, sunny climate. I have made my home in the Pacific Northwest and the gray, rainy weather is what I've come to accept. I can stock up on my favorite wool/cashmere socks, polar fleece hats and the rest of the gear that will keep me warm and dry throughout the long, winter months.
Belinda was unsettled by the course of her life. How could the business that she spent so much time in just collapse from underneath her? She wanted to blame someone but knew it wouldn't change things. The overral economy, the crumbling housing market or unemployment. What about so many natural disasters. Tornadoes, fires, hurricanes, floods. She knew the only thing to make a difference was her attitude. Belinda needed gratitude and to remember every day her life was good. She got what she needed and was always taken care of. She felt reassured knowing this and trusted in the belief.
Walking zombie like in the aisles of Walmart. Today, I wasn't greeted by the retired senior as I entered the store. Maybe he was on a lunch break. Noticed another worker talking to herself while stocking shelves. I thought to ask her "where to find the brooms?" But didn't want to disturb her. Toothpaste, toilet paper, cat food, vacuum cleaner bags, endless aisles of stuff filling my basket. I'd rather people watch. The young mom in hot pants and blue metallic high heels shopping with her son. He was happy to walk out with treats as they exited the store.
With this entry I will have completed six months of writing 100 words. I must admit I'm pleased with myself for sticking with it and most importantly I'm enjoying the process. It is a daily mediation of writing no matter what else is going on in my life. The mere fact I can sit and say what's on my mind. This not only helps me with my ideas but opens up a door to creativity. It is now a habit, a ritual. I can start or end my day writing 100 words, edit if I must and submit this entry.
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