It was, as I have said, a fine autumnal day; the sky was clear and serene, and nature wore that rich and golden livery which we always associate with the idea of abundance. The forests had put on their sober brown and yellow, while some trees of the tenderer kind had been nipped by the frosts into brilliant dyes of orange, purple, and scarlet.... As Ichabod jogged slowly on his way, his eye... ranged with delight over the treasures of jolly autumn. ~Washington Irving, "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow"
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Post #2- A Very Special Life
I wonder, now that I'm home and have had time to chew and swallow my whole vacation experience, how many folks really make a conscious choice to live their dreams. I think that my friend "D" and her husband do this more than anyone I know and it's not an easy thing.
You make choices in life. The reality is not always what the dream was. There are all the little things that you don't anticipate... the fact that you have to go where the work is and leave your home a lot. There's the constant effort to live simply and maintain a lifestyle that makes you and your partner happy. There are compromises, fears and that unsettling feeling that life will make things change and that, as you get older, it will be harder to make this lifestyle work.
You start holding onto things but also want to let go. What you say you want to do and the pull of "making a living" start to grate on each other. Then you think about the accumulation of material things that make life more comfortable but become logs caught in the roots of boggy, snagging permanence. Freedom is calling..... the elk of the high country are bugling your name and the quaking Aspen are whispering " come to us". It's not an easy thing when you have always been a free spirit but have a longing for "place"
This is a very special "place". This home reminds me of my grandmother's home in the hills of Napa.... only cleaner and with a flair for creativity. Henny, the chicken, knows. She has made her wishes clear. She wants breakfast every morning and to be tucked in at night. It's what all chickens want in life.
Last year when my mother died, "D" was there. She didn't get there in time to be with Mom but sometimes things don't work exactly the way you anticipate and Mom couldn't wait. So it is with life and death. But "D" came and she was present in that great time of need . She helped us so much with so many things. She helped us grieve and wrapped her arms around our sadness. When she was ready to leave I asked her to, please, take something, anything, that she wanted to remember Mom . She took some little bird statues, some glass eggs and a few other small things and then said that if we sold any of the furniture she would like to buy the kitchen table because she remembered so many wonderful times there and that table had always been in that place. It had so many memories for her. We didn't sell it to her. My sister and I gave it to her and helped her load the table into her truck. We gave her the one thing that she really wanted. It seems the most perfect person for it to go to.
She took that oak table home to Montana and during my visit I found the table in the upstairs bedroom, in a quilt making area, close to the bed. Every morning I would wake up and see the table. What a wonderful gift.... to know that this table is in my friend's house. I could hear my mother's voice saying " Yes, this is a good place for this table. It's found a new home. I'm so happy it's here." ...and so it goes. Sometimes we make choices that seem so right. Sometimes happiness is just there in the reflection of an old oak table and life is what it is.
I don't really have a 3rd post now that I condensed the photos into collages. I'm done for the day. Tomorrow "D" and I will be off for Glacier National Park.