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Life is a bit claustrophobic with all the lying on the couch I am doing, every moment an attempt to keep my foot from throbbing with pain. My mind is a circus: what I have been able to do, what I can do now, what I will be able to do once fully healed. I watch a lot of television, movies mostly. I’m reading a little, more to come because I finally found a book I like – such a picky reader.

I am praying a lot, not for me, I am fine, I think. It might depend on who you ask, however, definitely. The prayers are for a friend, who is far younger than I and in critical condition. Scary to the point of tears: for her family, for her wee children. I have never spoken such fervent words to God, the universe, whatever and whomever is out there. Space aliens? I believe I am being heard. I pray the answer will be YES.

The new year is here. I have a resolution, of sorts, to eat as low carb and high veg as possible for the month of January, though if I can sustain it longer, I am not going to argue with my willpower. My sweets to protein to vegetable ratio the past month as far from ideal or tummy soothing as is mathematically possible, so it seems. Math, however, is not my strongest subject.

This is not a resolution, but I am happy to report that I’ve exercised every day since my surgery and continue to be amazed at what works my entire body without causing my left foot too much anguish. On that front, it is healing rather nicely! My surgically modified toes are rock-hard with swelling but better than before. My foot previously doing it’s best imitation of a Frankenstein stitched balloon. Not great.

And this before I go – Juniper’s shoes! They light up! To see her walk in them is positively chuckle inducing. I am super keen for the day we walk together in the snow, maybe in a month or so? Yes, please.


A lovely Portland morning, me and Juni B. up and roaming, every sound hushed under the weight of the mist. Every scent heightened, the new leaves, the dry flaxen grass, the unfortunate rabbit killed under the tree of the top photo, forefoot and tail and fluff in the underbrush and Juniper whimpering to please investigate. Never have I felt more observed by the animals, seen and unseen, wing beats and calls, rustles and thumps. Crows, jays, towhees, and coyote, perhaps?

Today is a big day for us. After thirteen years to to-ing and fro-ing in a Mini Cooper, from one side of the country to the other, we are reuniting with our first love. A Subaru. The toll of a low clearance vehicle, scrape, scrape, scrape, and what now seems like an impossibly small space having finally, oddly, gotten to us. Our 50’s era garage is just wide enough and plenty long for what, in comparison, will be akin to driving a school bus.

Like most of what I have left behind in this life, I will not miss it. We had our good times and our stellar fuel economy (goodbye 42 MPG on the highway!) and fun zips around winding bending roads, but it’s time to move forward. It’s time for adventures on bumpy back roads without worry (or at least far less) of getting stuck. It’s time for car camping with our favorite canine, lying flat as a pancake in the back. It’s time for having more than one human passenger, save that of a child. It’s time for car loads of plants and other miscellany that need not be carefully balanced and protruding, clown-like, out the front windows of the car. Oh boy, oh boy, it is time.

Let’s go!


Well, mostly earlier today, save these two, which were taken last week, in the same good company, however. A new friend, Jennifer, and I, out walking. Discussing that word, friend, how often it is tricky and not quite enough, sometimes too much.

In between oohing and aahing over the scent of pine and how damn lucky we are to live in THIS place, red stone and dust, spotted towhees, flowers, and giant gorgeous mountains peering over our shoulders, we shared the shorthand of memories, distillations of of selves more than forty years in the making. How did I come to be me in this instant?

Though we did not pose the question nearly as succinctly as that, it is a good one. How did I? I married young and made it last. The hubster is my very best friend. I knew when I was eight years old that I didn’t want children, and thank goodness because my body, strong and sometimes wicked dictator that it is, occasionally renders me helpless and tired and utterly and completely infertile. My wit is sharp, save when dulled by the hammer and illogic of depression. And siblings? Three, one of whom I no longer speak to. No, it is not sad. People always say that, but it’s not. One doesn’t encourage others to remain in abusive relationships.

Though I love religious iconography and people who hide such treasures for me to find (squee!), I am not religious. Deeply spiritual, yes. In love with humanity, yes. Willing to do good, to give, to share, to help, yes, yes, YES!!

And what else, in this getting to know me phase? I love to walk and hike and bike, mostly in that order. I am an excellent baker and cook. A decent decorator. I love flowers and art and cerebral fil-ums. I devour good books and toss the rest aside. I cuss. I am a speed demon when entering the highway, first gear loud and thrumming, then go granny goose and take in the scenery. Was that a bird of prey I just saw? Let’s smell, touch, taste that. Let’s travel there. Turn right now, I wanna see where this goes. Do you hear that? Isn’t it amazing? Oh my goodness, aren’t we sooo lucky? We are alive now in THIS place!!

All Love

When I am thirsty, I gulp down water. I do not pause for breath, no matter the size of the glass. No matter if it dribbles down my chin and leaves me gasping for air. Satisfaction, happy at the sweet taste. Water. At first I thought this was a metaphor for my life – me lustily taking it all in, senses on high alert, music, trees, words, mountains, wildness overflowing from my lips. Sometimes, yes.

But I am also the sipper. I take a single drop, and it spreads like sunrise, small then big, big, bigger. I stop and crouch, examine the leaf, the rock, the blade of grass. I pick up the feather and watch it fall, a whole minute if I am lucky and the wind is right. And it is beautiful. The gulping and the savoring. They are the same, really, all love.

Puzzle Time

Working a puzzle of the great city of Philadelphia two nights ago. It’s that time of year! Though we are delinquents who failed to keep in touch, the happy memory of puzzling with our Portland friends, Dan and Kristin, is as bright and clear as yesterday: the four of us huddled over one or the other of our dining room tables, sipping something boozy, the hi-fi whirring and punctuated by the sound of laughter and voices chatting merrily about every little thing.

It has been a wonderful few days, my melancholy about the state of the world tamped by the beauty of those nearest to me. I enjoyed a long stretch in the kitchen, making soup and my annual batch of fudge, roasting vegetables, and baking cookies for neighbors and my first ever exchange. The swap was at my friend Kelly’s, and it was a grand time, a room full of kind and generous women of all ages, each of us merry in our own way, feasting on sweet and savory treats, and glad to be together.

I have been helping clean out my neighbor’s house over the past few months, eighty plus years of trinkets, treasures, and trash. Though everyone laughs with incredulity when I say it, I rather enjoy it, the searching, the organizing, the discovering, and find myriad ways, both intentional and unexpected, to make it fun. It mostly involves me being silly and laughing loudly at the great company of my dear friend Peggy, one of the finest and most delightful women I have ever had the pleasure to know. We stumble upon treasures that remind us of our childhoods, our mothers, grandmothers, and friends. We find the weird, the wacky, the sad. It is all good.

And the weather! Eeek. Dare I say how nice it has been here? Crisp and bracing, with many sunny sky days and starry nights (I think we saw the space station whizzing above last night!), a little rain here, a little rain there, and overall quite nice. My Portland friends have been inundated with a flood of rain, all safe and dry last I heard. My Colorado friends snow came and quickly went, as it tends to do. Hoping our other weather shoe doesn’t drop with a menace but a wee tremble instead, a slow hush of giant flakes. I wouldn’t mind that at all.


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