I came north to divide time between the vitality of the city and isolating to study subjects of interest, sequester for a deep dive into art making, figure out who I want to be for the third act of life. When The Spouse and I previously worked apart, kin quickly spread the news we divorced. On another occasion, a call from the east coast branch inquired if I’d died. We’re a really close family. If I’d been thinking, presumed dead might not have been such a bad thing.
2,866 miles later… work routine is established. I floundered for a time since Plein Aire was the goal while the weather is still good, however, the car died. No reviving. Dead as a doornail. Thankful it made the last effort to get me and the studio here safely. Woke up this morning with a series clarified to pursue. Even with all of that going on, extremely important things have been accomplished between the time of waking when the light comes and sleeping when I’m tired.
Staring out the window, I witness the leaves of the Aspen and Paper Birch trees turn to gold as the sap cools. The grey and blue stratus compete with the white of the clouds as they race weather across the sky and define branches early barren in preparation for winter. The fireweed has turned from brilliant magenta stalks to gold in the sun and tired browns with the impending rain. Their flowers have topped out as seed fluff blowing in the wind. The first snow is about 6 weeks away, give or take - the fireweed never lie.
Rode a small 3 point earthquake and smiled at the hello. Three of the 12 largest earthquakes reported in the world occurred in Alaska and I have vivid memories of the 9.2. A go bag is ready by the door. The mountains across the inlet are volcanic and active so volcanos, earthquakes and fires have been routine since birth. These reminders inspire meditation on cavernous questions such as what the heck am I doing here and why, even here, the Great God of the Washing Machine demands only one sock as tribute. Wouldn’t a pair make more sense?
Speaking of greetings, a bear dropped scat at the corner of the house. A courteous way to leave a message and let me know It was around. There’s an animal path coming up from the beach side and around the back to the front on the land side. I feel comforted and welcomed home although with the help of a friend and his weed-cutter on steroids, cleared a line-of-sight to both back gates.
Memory of long buried habits stir. While the temperature is still pleasant, I’m cultivating a practice of showering first thing rather than the city rush right before running out of the door. Hair needs to be dry after temperatures drop to below freezing. Clumps of iced strands breaking off is cosmetically disconcerting. The amount of sand piggybacking into the house would fill a child’s playbox in less than a week so shoes come off at the door. The sand blown into the screens on the beach side occlude the view so I had the bright idea to vacuum the screens from the inside but the sand is stuck on the outside windows. The windows are second story and I don’t have a ladder so it’s a moot point. Problem solved. It’ll wait until spring. Have to run. I absolutely have to watch the leaves turning to gold.