For The First Time, Again

He was thrilled at the “golden” hills and the patchwork quilt blanketing the trees in a blaze of colors. He was enjoying the warm weather, not too hot or too cold. In fact just right for enjoying the gallery display being put on by nature.

I decided not to point out that the grass on those “golden” hills was simply dead. I also didn’t point out that those brilliant colors were the final death throes of the leaves. Nor did I mention that this nice weather, his right temperature, meant the wasp would be out looking for the autumn harvest. They were waiting for the ripe and over ripe fruit to come in so they could feast on it. I decided to let him see the drunk wasps for on his own.

Instead I held his hand and walked beside him, marveling at how every little thing caught his eye. He delighted in it all, taking pictures of everything to make it all last or hold onto it a bit longer. And it was nice to share with him.

He likes to share his world with me. He does this so easily and I love this. Well except for when it results in me sitting in a tiny boat in a loch in rain, finding myself cold and wondering what exactly we are waiting for. Those times I wish he’d just take a picture or so and share it with me instead of letting me in on the whole experience. 😉

It’s these moments, whether we are walking in the countryside or sitting in a boat that I realize that we haven’t always shared everything, that we’ve had our own experiences from where we have lived before. No matter how hard you try to share that past, you never can completely. So you take that person with you back to the place of you remember, and of course it’s a bit different however still enough of the same for that person to make the connection to what you were describing.

And in those moments, when you are back there experiencing something akin to what you remember, you have a chance to see it again with fresh eyes. A chance to see that the dead grass is beautiful because it does look a bit golden and isn’t just dead grass, rather it’s part of the patchwork quilt that you thought was only in the trees. Pure and absolute magic! The kind that you want to hold onto!

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If You Have…

“If you have a garden and a library you have everything you need” – Marcus Tullius Cicero

As you know I’m a city kid and thus gardening skills are limited.  Sure sure some people in the city garden well, but not me.  Hey I grow stuff, in containers or pots, but that’s the extent of it. I’m more of a library kind of person. But Marcus Tullius Cicero says I need both to have everything I need. So I do try with the gardening thing.

Now Marcus doesn’t really say what type of garden, but I reckon. It should have some flowers and perhaps some food because people need to eat. The flowers are to nourish the eyes and the soul with their beauty. I love a riot of color so you can just see where this is going with my flowers.

Food is not as easy to grow in pots and containers, because some things just need more space. Tomatoes work, so do herbs. Peppers work, as do onions and such. But pumpkins, which fill me with glee just upon seeing their lovely orange skin, does not work in the least. And food in pots and containers is limited, limited to amount and type.

So this year, as I grew my library, (who doesn’t?), I grew plants. Brightly colored flowers share space with heirloom tomatoes, herbs and peppers. Lavender peers out from among its space next to the onions. And yes they are all alive and doing well I’m thrilled to say.

But, and here is the rub my friends, I do not have everything I need. Not by a long shot. You see I need items I can’t grow, other veggies and fruit. I also like meat and I’ve yet to figure out how to grow that in my little containers. Eggs come in handy too, but those do not grow in my garden either.

Somehow I have failed Marcus, but I’m hoping my library will make up for the difference. My library is a riot of subjects and topics. Books from all over, different sizes and shapes fill the shelves to beyond over-flowing. My library is growing in abundance!

The difference between my library and garden is that the garden will soon be but a memory as the season changes, but my library will last. The colors are fading, the blooms past their prime in my garden, and soon the veggies will all be ready to be picked and removed. Still my library will remain.

I wonder if what I’ve accomplished in gardening and library will be enough and if not, will the gardening books count as well. Perhaps Marcus means at worst I can eat my books, but I don’t think that’s possible.

Perhaps Marcus is saying even after the garden is done our bodies nourished by the food, the words and pictures will continue to nourish our souls.

Making Movies

When I was younger, contemplating my future, I was pretty certain that I’d be with someone who was like Clint Eastwood or John Wayne. A man’s man to be sure. A man who took nothing from anyone and did his own thing, which was always right by the way.

Of course a Harrison Ford, a man who took risks and did it his way was also to be heavily considered. I mean what girl wouldn’t like Indiana Jones, well unless of course he took you down into a snake pit!

What I learned was that my Clint Eastwood really didn’t have a lot to say and I felt a bit like a side kick. My Harrison Ford was fun, and not bad with conversation, but a hair too moody for me. Sometimes I felt like I was in a pit and other times we were in the clouds. Granted all of this was when I was young and had perhaps unrealistic expectations.

What I ended up with is an interesting mixture: a huge dose of Spencer Tracy, a large splash of John Cleese, a dash of Humphrey Bogart, and a sprinkling of Charlie Chaplin. Sure at times he able to find Clint Eastwood or John Wayne and yes there are bits of Hardison Ford there, and a sprinkling of Steve Martin. And he reality is, this is just right.

A friend pointed out that his large portion of Spencer Tracy fit well my rather large portion of Katherine Hepburn’s fiestyness, so I guess again, it all works. Sadly I have a huge dose of Charlie Chaplin, rather easily there is no effort for this on my part.

I guess this means it’s rather like a mixed bag of movies here and there. You just never know what you will get! 😉

Weighty Subject

Beloved took up weight training recently. I’m not sure it was something he had been planning or dreaming of for a long time, I suspect it was more or less just one of those things that happen.

Perhaps, just maybe, but I’m not certain, I may have had something to do with that. Inadvertently of course. I mean if he wants to pick up weight training or body building I will stand behind him. Hell I will help him, as I may have already.

You see sometimes I fail at packing or shopping. I understand that I have limited arm space and limited car space and I’m restricted to what I can lift. This is where himself comes in, because, well. If he is around I can add more items.

Since I’ve been traveling a bit and now more so with him, suddenly my packing has changed. In e past I would ensure what I packed was what I needed and was still easy to carry. Now that he’s with me more, well himself can carry more than I can so now I consider that with my packing. And well this idea has grown a bit with time, so the suitcase seems to get heavier each trip.

This in turn has made Beloved take up weight lifting, I officially. He is starting small, just with my ever-increasing suitcases for now. Eventually we will add heavy furniture or such to his routine. I’d hate to see him plateau or get stuck! 😉

Chained Up

I’ve never actually worked on a chain-gang. Mostly because I’ve never been incarcerated. But I’ve seen them, in movies and a few times on the sides the roads, doing clean up. It always looks more fun in the movies to be honest, but even then, it doesn’t look like all that much fun.

Maybe it doesn’t look like fun because I’m not really an outdoor kind of person. And then there is that thing called manual labor. Yeah I’m not really into that either to be honest.

And while I know chains can be seen as an accessory, a means to complete an outfit or make a statement, I don’t think it’s the same kind of chains as what they have on these chain-gang details. I’m just going out on a limb with that one, but I feel pretty well supported on this limb! 😉

Then there is this whole authority thing. I really don’t like being told what to do or when to do it. I understand that happens on chain-gangs too.

I’d sooner be on the kind of chain-gang that involves stores, jewelry stores. I’d be happy to wear those chains, but I’d still have authority issues. My understanding is that wearing this type of chain is not conducive to manual labor. These seem to be my kind of chains. But I don’t want them with strings attached!

The fact is, I don’t want to be chained up, not because of choices I made, nor because I’m beholden to someone for something nice and sparkly. I’d sooner go without the adornments in exchange for my freedom, in exchange for not having chains that bind and tie me. Nope, I need to roam, free to come and go, do as I please and not be on a chain-gang.

Sitting Back

Some times I sit back and wonder at this life of mine. It’s not at all what I dreamed of, in some ways far more and in other ways far less.

I realize this is fairly common for most people, but I’m always surprised at how things have gone. Paths I thought were straight and direct somehow had blind curves and lead to a very meandering route. Paths that seemed dark and full of trouble seemed to bring the most to me even though they weren’t what I dreamed of.

Friends, oh how I’ve been blessed with such wonderful friends! The kind who enrich your life and remind you that family isn’t always blood. And some of these friends wouldn’t be in my world if I had stuck to the straight and boring path.

Love? Of course, more than I deserve to be honest. A man who shows and tells me every day how he loves me. I could spend a life time trying to show him what he means to me, but I’d never succeed, there isn’t enough time or space for this. I’m loved by friends, wonderful people I do not deserve at all. And yet they love me for all my follies and ridiculousness unconditionally.

I hadn’t dreamed of being loved, not like is. It wasn’t ever to be hoped for, this constant loving and supportive embrace that I’m surrounded with.

I never thought that I would have such freedom to do what I want for a living, get paid to do it and never get bored with it. Such a delight.

And yet to all of this is the flip side. I feel pressured to provide back such love and support, such encouragement. No one asks for it, but friendship and relationships require give and take.

I feel a need to defend and protect my freedoms and liberties. My passion becomes almost an obsession of sorts, I cannot let it go nor do I want to see another step in and work on a theory to prove it a different thing. Never have I felt so much a slave to this passion.

If you had asked me a few years back, I’d tell you I’d be happily single, not lecturing and just working on concepts and theories. And yet, that’s all upside down in reality and I love it all while also wanting something different. Because the grass is always greener just over there!

Artful Compromise

He came in with his arms filled with all sorts of things, I could just make out a small bouquet of flowers amongst everything else. Everything else was composed of boxes, bags and a strange rectangular item.

The rectangle turned out to be a small piece of art that had managed to catch his eye while he was walking through a market some where.

Art is an emotional thing, you know instinctively if you like something or not because of how it speaks to you. Art is also personal for those same reasons.

I’m not going to deny the piece he brought me caught my eye, however not for the same reason it caught his. It was probably one of the strangest bits of work I’ve ever seen. I wondered why it caught his eye and where he thought it would work anyways.

It wasn’t the first artful mistake either, we’ve both messed up in the department. I don’t know why either of us assumed that drawings and paintings would speak to us in the same way when we have such different tastes in music and the written word. To that end there are clearly bits of art that are mine and some that are his and then there is what we call the disaster area. It isn’t really a disaster, it’s just that it doesn’t work for our tastes, it’s more or less a compromise that one of us assumed the other would enjoy. A compromise that did not really work for either of us nor the house.

Probably the strangest piece we own is a mask type bit of art. It is a face, decidedly female looking, that has been painted in paisley swirls with random bits of rhinestone and foil here and there. He placed it on a bookshelf, as if it’s peeking out at us and now and then I put a rather large book in front of the face, to hide it. She was a gift, someone thought she suited us both to a T, I’m not sure how or why, but well there she is.

I’m sure to someone she is lovely, a masterpiece even, but to us she is a mystery.