The neighborhood smells good these days, of green, of dust, of dying flowers, of cooler air and lower clouds. I walked into the woods on Rosh Hashanah to smell it even closer, to get that scent along with calls of birds, a few falling leaves, and filtered sunlight through the trees.
Alan's birthday is as good an excuse as any to gather family at the beach. We've been together forty odd years (both meanings, yes). It all worked out somehow, and here we are, with a family we love, in a new state we've learned to love, and a coastline we've loved since childhood. Now I've discovered my new favorite Oregon beach town. Manzanita is the perfect ratio of beach to town - seven broad miles of soft pale sand, flat and firm, and a short few blocks of town.
My feelings about the change of seasons haven't changed. The shift comes as an affront to my sensibilities. I seem to write this way every fall equinox. I'm always sad to bid goodbye to summer. I love the heat, the fewer clothes, the lush garden; the carefree part is a visceral memory of childhood. I'm still adjusting to the seasons here, and perhaps always will.
Every day this month has brought a new hint of the change of seasons, a firm farewell to summer, and a gradual lead up to the autumn equinox. Perhaps it's more like a wind down, a slowing of nature's pulse. The first leaves curl at the edges and our wood floors are cool under my … Continue reading Ode to the Garden
I've been trying to write about our anniversary hike up Cascade Head for a week, trying to strike a balance between the joy of ascent, hard work, and achievement with pain, suffering, and aging. It was a beautiful hike and all's well that ends well, I just didn't like how hard the hike was on my body, and I waver between "suck it up" and "badassery" and "when did I get so oooold? It's made me rather grumpy I must say.
When Portland was 100 degrees, we chose the coast for our anniversary week, and found a last minute crappy condo in Neskowin, with a balcony overlooking the beach and amazing non-stop treasures!
Fernhill Wetlands gave me a little taste of summer love, clear blue skies overhead with only the wispiest of clouds, calm reflective waters, languid herons, and fading flowers. Though I've visited here three different times, it was always winter, with grey skies, cold misty fog, winter birds and plants, and the godawful nutria.
"Today's a great day," Ezra says on repeat. "Is every day a great day?" I ask. "Yes," he says, "every day is a great day." It's been a rough week. My friend Kim died suddenly, so I'm glad for the solace and light wherever and whenever it comes.
I walk outside to the garden early most mornings, and with a loud squawk our resident scrub jays fly in. They perch on a trellis or tree branch across the yard but in plain sight, and cock their heads at me. I sigh, go back in to grab the peanuts I'd forgotten, and scatter a few on the patio.
We haven't seemed to gin up the energy to do what it takes to get the grandkids out camping. I'm daunted by what it would take, and it feels like a big push, looming larger than when we camped with our own kids. I have to admit, I'm slowing down. But Oregon is a camping paradise with so many possibilities near rivers and lakes, in forests and mountains, and by the ocean.