Saturday, July 30, 2011


  In my fantasy, I live on a rugged coastline, high above the pounding waves of the wild ocean. I can look out the windows of my lighthouse and see nothing but cool clear water into the horizon. I can venture down and climb around on the rocks and feel the brutal chill of ocean air blow through my jacket and muss my hair. I can see the tidal pools and their inhabitants at the mercy of the furious sea, feel the spray on my face, smell the salty seaweed and fish odors that permeate everything.  I can see the barnacle encrusted rocks, the jellyfish floating along the waves, the small crabs and langostinos that crawl over the rocks in search of food. And I embrace the loneliness of this existence I have chosen...and I embrace the sea, the mother of all life.


  And then there is my reality. Living in a landlocked portion of the world that I swore to myself I would never come back to, once I'd made my escape. Living in a place that (right now) is so hot and so dry, it puts deserts to shame. In a place where there are too many people wanting too much of my attention and time, where I feel like I never have enough money, like I never  I fit in, and I never thought I'd be.  And I know this is the kind of craziness that affects people during the Los Ninos, and the 24 hour daylight times in Alaska, and during anytime that conditions feel insurmountable, whether it is weather or war or day after day of hundred degree heat. That feeling of being so powerless in a world gone crazy. Where there is nothing to do, absolutely nothing, but hang on to your ass, and wait for it to blow over, or through, or away.


  It's been extraordinarily hot here, with the heat index in the 110's.  There was rain in some parts of the area today, but not here. Again. Because it didn't go over 95 today, they declared it a "break" in the heat. Tomorrow the heat advisory goes back into effect until at least Tuesday.

  I don't do well in the heat. When I moved to the west coast, way up north, by the Oregon border, I thought I'd died and gone to heaven. The extremely mild temperatures were such a blessing to me. I didn't care if it rained a lot.  I fell in love with the fog.  When it got hot, it was about 74.  When it got cold, it was about 40. It was wonderful. And now I am old, and I am tired and I am particularly sensitive to the why am I here?

  I keep asking myself this question.

  And I'm not finding a lot of answers.

  My son is here. That is mostly it. My family is here, most of them. That's a little part too. I spent much of my growing up life here, but I don't feel like I belong here. Except when I'm in my garden, tending my chickens. I love my little house here mostly. And I am trying to practice being content, but some days this is how I feel.

  Lao Tzu said " Be content with what you have. Rejoice in the way things are. When you realize that nothing is lacking, the whole world belongs to you."

  Good thought for a day like today.

I have had a couple of whacky days in a row, and things aren't going my way some, and people don't do what I want them to.  And I am hot and cranky and nervous about the future.  But still,  the sun sets in a blaze of glory and the birds sing and the squirrels chatter. The dogs are playing and the gardens are burning up and there is nothing much I can do about any of it.

 Did have a wonderful conversation with my 8 year old niece today when she said she missed me terribly. lol So we hatched a plan, and she is going to come up and stay a week from Tuesday, and will be here for 4 days.  I love being her co-conspiritor. She told me she was bored. She said she got grounded from her bike because she rode off to her friends house without telling her mom and dad. They, of course, were frantic. I said, but you learned an important lesson, right?  She said, oh yes,Auntie--I swear I did!!  lol  I am blessed to be the favorite aunt of such a beautiful child.

  So, I will be content with what I have and be grateful for the love of my family. I will sit here and try to figure out how I am going to get this pup into this crate and just how much crying and barking I will be able to handle when the time comes.  I will try to get enough sleep tonight and be grateful that I could can another 6 quarts of tomatoes today. I will get ready to can peaches next, and plant beans tomorrow and clean up the burned out garden remains. This weather has been brutal...the worst in a long time.  I may be digging potatoes soon too...I'll check them tomorrow. The squash are a loss. The tomaotes are on their way out. The cucumbers are gone completely. The corn is a wash.  Not a great year's harvest this time.

 Time to give it up for this day, knowing I've done the best I could, with what I had, where I was.

  And somedays, that's enough



Anonymous said...

'Last night I dreamt I was at Mandalay'. This was my first thought as I read the first paragraph of your post Annie I loved the book 'Rebecca' and it wont be long before I am once again nearby.

It will pass everything does I found myself in quite a funk a few weeks ago my distraction was a hernia operation!!!!!!!!!! I love how the 'Force' has such a great sense of humour.

Love light and peace to you

DJan said...

I love this post, all of it. The dream of the ocean, and the reality of the heat. Your life does have its ups and downs, but I feel your spirit, your true love of life, coming through.

The whole Pacific Northwest rain and cool temperatures are exactly the reason we retired here from Colorado, which is burning up right now, not as bad as you, but almost.

Rita said...

We all have off days--bad days--but you have such a great attitude. I totally believe you will be just fine. You soul shines through any dark times. And you have a little angel coming to share some smiley days soon. Things will get better.

I loved the quote. We just need to be grateful for what we do have. And dream of the ocean or wherever we are at total peace...until we realize we have total peace right where we are. Not always an easy thing to do. :)

Kristin H. said...

Oh, Annie, my heart just breaks for you. I understand well the feeling of being an outsider in my own environment. Particularly if its an environment I'd really rather not be living in. Gabriella and I both deal with disdain of the heat that we have been living with and miss the cool respite of the West coast.

Regardless, your posts always lift me up and I will continue to check in with you for my daily dose of Elegant Blessings.

Petit fleur said...

I LOVE your description of the beach fantasy! It's perfecto!

Your niece sounds darling. I'm sure you will have many fun adventures together! Maybe you post a photo?
Would love to see you two together.

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