“You never know what’s around the corner. It could be everything. Or it could be nothing. You keep putting one foot in front of the other, and then one day you look back and you’ve climbed a mountain.”
― Tom Huddleston –
But it is always something…
Written at “The Oasis”, photos from the road…
Mother Nature’s gift today is a lot of windy hot air! The final steps and chores on the way for our departure North are taking place including sadly enough leaving Old Faithful behind, battery removed and at a Friend’s house to be on a trickle charger. Poor Soul, it is as she is on artificial life support. She is! Today is a taste of how summer “will be” here and us spoiled with always cool weather feel fortunate we are headed out soon. We have been here six months. Seems at times like six days and at other times like six years. As much as there are parts of it I do not want to remember, I have to come to terms with the fact that surgery was a necessity and even if two months later pain subsides, it is of a healing pain and a better frame of mind looking forward “to go”. As always.
I am glad to have been smart enough [it happens!] to have taken steps ahead of the surgery as to live afterwards without lifting anything over ten pounds. A 120 gallon propane bottle which they fill at 80% meaning 94 gallons, roughly the equivalent of 24 bottles. A plus being the bottle is free and the propane is $1.84 a gallon versus $4. A Big Berkey filter for drinking water from our rain water catchment. So sweet I am now spoiled with it. No more going to Terlingua and fill up 3 gallon jugs coming out of an ugly black hose at 10 cents a gallon. Nothing left to lift! Or so I thought… Reason for one good Friend always stopping by to check on us as Life off the grid has always a surprise or two… that needs lifting. We did ride a couple of times to the mailbox which is two miles away. One has to steer while riding a sidecar versus counter steering when riding a motorcycle. Steering uses back muscles. I concentrated on only using my arms and yet paid the price that same evening and the next day. Not much of a choice leaving our third member behind. She probably herself needs the rest.
As it happens every year we are ready to leave and at the same time not! We love it here. Undisturbed silence besides the wind, the birds and some ground owls. The company of Lance and my Mother are, should I say, comforting even if we cry, laugh, talk and throw rocks together. Spirit is Mr Freedom on these acres. He knows the boundaries and this season did not escape as he generally does once a year after at one point when already far away turns his head and says “good bye… see you later!” He had surgery on his nose a few weeks back and now a pink healing spot is appearing amidst his gray hair which almost matches mine. He has not slowed down however as I have wishing I had his energy. It will come, I know it will. A final X-ray and Dr’s visit on Wednesday will tell a lot about the outcome of this spine surgery I do not wish on anyone unless really needed. I still at time cannot believe I did it.
I am not going to hide it. It was rough! Both physically and mentally. I don’t know which one was worse. There is not much one can do afterwards while only take a few steps here and there and lay down hoping for a comfortable position for some sleep which sometimes would not come. All mixed in with much frustration and even depression while constantly repeating to myself which sometimes would help and at other times not, “it is what it is… this too shall pass. There is always someone worse off.”
The bag of thoughts has been filling up. Thinking to me means writing or conversating. Some conversating, yes, with a good Friend who rode his motorcycle from California to stay with us for a week. Those were not my best days but with his outmost respect for my physical shape [dilemna?] we mostly stayed here, talked and cooked. The short paths of thoughts seems to have always ended up at an intersection with stop signs on both sides. Redundant thoughts. Same thoughts I have been carrying for these past twelve years. Answers of questions which will never materialize while the “it is what it is” often does not let me rest in Peace. It is an amazing fact that “time” has no bearing on some aspects of Life. As an expression from a Friend I have also pronounced in the past “the waves never stop, we just learn to surf better”. And I have. I have become a decent surfer on this Ocean of Life. I don’t think one can ever turn Pro but one can for sure try. That is when being on the road helps as rare are the dull moments when the gears of the mind suddenly disengage creating a mental chaos which at times makes me wonder “what in the World am I doing here?”.
And where are we going after my Dr’s visit in Midland? I have no idea while the only step I take is to watch the weather ahead of us. Will Valley of the Gods, Muley Point, Recaptured Pocket all in Southern Utah be cool enough for us? Or will we have to head up towards the elevations of Colorado? Wyoming? Montana? Maybe Canada? I am pulled towards “The Lost Coast” in Northern Califonia. That serene and quiet beach with its driftwoods washed ashore standing up as monuments of time. I am thinking that maybe I want to be a bit more urban this time around. Not meaning big cities but villages. The bigger cities will be for food! I miss good ingredients including exotic ones. I miss a good Sushi! Villages, little towns, they all generally have an outdoor cafe and some interesting locals who each have a story to tell. Everyone has a story.
Stay well, Ara and Spirit…