I desperately needed to get out and do some hiking. But then there was the weather to consider. Still slushy and slippery in higher elevations – soooo – we took ourselves off to Notch Hill. Two hills, many trails meant doing each hill three times. This even included some mild scrambling: just what I needed. (Abby disagreed at one point but hey…)

Halfway through our hike the heavens opened and it began to pour. My only concern was that I could no longer take photos. Every time I passed a photo op, I noticed the regret. “Akk! That would have been such a great shot!”

And then I noticed something else. Hmmm, I already had more than a dozen shots – was my glass half full or half empty? Imagine, on a rainy day on the West Coast I managed to get a whole bunch of lovely photos!

A wave of gratitude swept over me. That’s better.

Much better.

And since that moment, I have been grateful for everything this day: the hot water that filled my tub, the cozy sweater I’m wearing – the last thing my Mother ever knitted for me. I am grateful for a cozy home, for Abby – the best hiking companion I could wish for.

I am grateful for the abundance in my life; for the love in my life; for the friends in my life; for my health and strength. Honestly, I couldn’t list everything that I am grateful for.

Mostly (really mostly) I am overwhelmingly grateful that Simon is in my life. That we love each other – that I was gifted this second chance at love with the most beautiful man I have ever known.

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Spring comes early to the West Coast – and here’s proof that it’s here. Tender leaves beginning to unfold on the trail beside my house.

It’s been a quiet day – a busy day. I worked this morning. I walked with Julie this afternoon.

Wait – did I say busy? Let me take that back. I also had a nap and surfed the Internet. No – not busy. Just a fine day in my life.

Now – if only I didn’t have to wait two more months before I see Simon again! Gaaaaa!

Okay – I can handle it.

I think.

Yes – I am living proof that you are never too old be be crazy in love.

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I almost forgot to write a post today!

I blame Simon entirely.

Let me explain: I got home from a VERY slushy walk with Abby to an email form Simon. Call me any time, he said. That was 4.30. So I called. And he kept talking for more than 2 hours. I had nothing to do with it.

Who me? respond? Question? Add my two cents worth? Enjoy hearing his voice? Wishing we could talk all night?

Of course not.

And while I admit it was Simon who suggested we had talked long enough and it might be time for each of us to have dinner, I’m quite sure I would have said the same thing given a smidgeon more time.

All his fault.

As I have said in the past, the secret of life is knowing who to blame.

Clearly I have that invaluable knowledge.

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Today, I got caught up in poetry. Specifically, Mary Oliver. How is it that I had not discovered her magic until recently?

Wild Geese

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting –
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

Poetry like this is like a Van Gogh painting – it stops me in my tracks; makes me gasp with its beauty.

Art: I am happy to be contemplating beauty and not the ugliness that man creates every day. Humans also create beauty: music, books, poetry, paintings, sculpture – and more and more.

The Mother creates beauty we cannot even emulate. Yet I intent to try. I am enthralled by the idea of reclaiming a piece of land, observing what the Mother does, learning from her, being her handmaiden – assisting her to create a place of magic for all that grows and lives in a beautiful garden.

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I have no idea why I am feeling melancholic this evening. Nothing serious of course – just a mild feeling of – I don’t know – restlessness? Wanting to be somewhere else? Wanting some company? (one particular person’s come to that). Wanting the world to be different?

Yes, I suspect the news (pipelines, colonial laws against First Nations etc.) is part of this. I want good news. I want hopeful news. I want to know that the world has woken up and wants to join hands and work for the benefit of all living things. I want to know that love prevails and that we realize we are all connected and are all each other’s keepers.

Why is that so hard?

Okay – deep breath. Counting my blessings. I worked. I got out. I shopped. I got wine and chocolate. What more could I possibly want or need?

Perhaps I need to go up a mountain – sit for a while in the alpine – let the Mother soothe me.

Maybe I just need a big, long hug.

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Slush Day

As the song says, “What a difference a day makes!”

It was warm. It was sunny! The snow began a serious melt. All the trails became a slush pit.

The horse was much happier. Abby was happier. She had a bone on the deck and a nap in the sun.

Instead of a hushed and pristine snowshoe, I sloshed through slush, following in many other footsteps and in the track of an ATV. No, ATVs are not allowed in the park but every time it snows, the ATVers, for a reason I cannot fathom, assume it is now okay to take their CO2 spewing stinky machines into a provincial park where all the signs tell them, “No motorized vehicles.” As a result, the already soft trails become virtual bogs.

Deep breath: I shall not rant (repeat 500 times).

This was one more day of not driving. Tomorrow, I shall feel confident enough to get out and do some shopping. Today the roads were still pretty slippery. I never trust West Coast snow or roads when it does snow.

This has not been a hardship: not even remotely.

Life is good.

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Today: the first snowshoe day of the season. I did not expect it to be in my back yard.

And these photos were taken this morning – before the blizzard dumped another foot or more of snow. So this afternoon, Abby and I snowshoed for almost 2 hours through the park – didn’t see a single soul. Breaking trail all the way because by the time we circled back to the homeward bound trail, all traces of our former steps had vanished. And I couldn’t take any photos this afternoon – it was snowing much too hard.

Pity – it would have been fun: big fat flakes and not much else.

And, of course, there is no driving in my near future – not on these roads and not in a place where almost no one has snow tires.

And here’s all the lovely stuff about this: this afternoon’s walk was magical: all sound muffled; complete peace – walking through a rain forest with huge, old growth trees, snow falling – simply magic. And if I need supplies, I can put on my snowshoes and my big multi-day pack and hike up to the store. Twenty minutes and I’m there.

And think of all the money I am saving on gas! Not to mention sparing the environment.

Yes – I am blessed.

Paul even got the bobcat out this afternoon and plowed the driveway. I have a feeling there will be more plowing in his future tomorrow.

I was supposed to work tomorrow. That is also cancelled.

Life is good. Love is good. The future is good. (except for this horse – he is not impressed)

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