Out of time

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The Friday before my vacation I meditated a long, quiet time on the back porch until in the silence the still voice emerged and said, You must s l o w way down.

So, on my vacation I slept forever. I got a horrible room in a boarding house for way too much money for the quality of it and still that was a hundred a night on discount. The guy who owned and ran the place decorated the walls in the lobby, the halls, my room with pics of himself from the 80’s.  This apparently being when he’d experienced some personal level of success as a marathon runner.  The fridge in my room didn’t work, I slept on top of the sheets in case of bugs.

At night he sat on the front steps of the joint with his shirt off and played trumpet at the sunflowers growing in the sidewalk garden and the traffic in the street.

The place was less than two blocks to the beach and each night I could see the moon out my window, growing big.   She peaked saucer white the last night I was there, illumination on all I had gone on vacation to be rid of in the first place.  My personal moon arriving the same day washing and ringing my body and emotions to rain out of me, me lined up for better or worse with her.  Else, in the daytimes I baked in the sun, brined myself for hours in the sea.  I ate fabulous food and did not think at all about the impact on my credit card bill.  When it was done I returned satiated, a deep readiness where restlessness had begun to live.

One thing I noticed though was the changing of time that happened after that.  One day, having just returned back to real life and work, I had patients all morning and again in the late afternoon til the night.  On my break, I found my way to the beach with a book and a bag packed with lunch.  I laid on a sheet on the flat part of lowtide beachmud where earlier in the day water had run.  I didn’t sleep.  I felt the rhythm of the sea breathe my body into and out of the earth.

And then, some veil-parting, some little-known aspect of the moon?  It was the waning moon, this week but one full cycle ago.  I checked my clock to see what time I had left before returning to the office, it had been an hour and forty minutes already.  I was certain it had been only 45. This was the first of several experiences over the Harvest moon that I found myself out of time.  Not as in running out.  As in the ancient way.  Between.

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The night we move from chatting on Facebook to chatting on the phone the word he uses more than once is timewarp.  He was one of them.  By the end of the first week of us talking I have settled on, I was, too.  I was one of them, too.

So was I.

I come here to the big box bookstore after therapy to tally: I have lost Time at least 8 times since vacation, been caught in odd grey stormy squalls at least as much as that since then as well.  Kevin and BJ dancy and low-throated, dark eyed and cracking jokes, dead for years sat at my fire Friday night.   The whole time, real as if they were still alive.  It’s the first time that has happened since the summer I was first home to the Tall Pines, 2015. He is asleep before I have a chance to tell him and I decide it is just as well.

It’s all behind me.  And here, right now, too.  What has passed comes again, at least anyway when you make space for it.

Or maybe, it’s just bigger.  Than all us, and comes back around…No matter your pace?

I’d want comfort food

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This Starbucks is always so trashy.  I literally mean the tables always have crumbs and sticky, dried liquid on them and often straw wrappers or napkins are littered about on the floor or at least on a minimum of one counter or tabletop, too.  It is the one local to me and I rarely come here except for when my instinct, like tonight, says so.  Tonight when I walked in there was only one other customer and all the grody empty places to sit.  That’s when I realized, oh this is why I’m never here.

In Laguna Beach it would frequently get that way, too, but only after the certain times a day that the rush of tourists coming off Main beach needed their afternoon caffeine.  The employees there were always so good about getting it all cleaned up and put back together.  It was one of my two regular spots to write and be alone without loneliness.  I miss it, Laguna Beach, my lifestyle there, my independence, the so many places to go and simply be.  I think of it daily, lately.

Today it was stormy since noon. I felt drowsy, emotional, in need of rest.  I took a nap after work before therapy and knew before I even got to my therapist’s that when we were done I’d want comfort food.  I drove immediately to The Farmer’s Wife when we finished up for fresh fried chicken and mashed potatoes with gravy even though the mug outside hung thick as wet flour air.

I didn’t have my wallet.  Thankfully I figured this out before ordering.

In my car I called my mom to see if she felt like meeting me for comfort food.  She said, your dad just called and asked me the same.

So she got my wallet for me, and we all met at the country place that used to be Jody’s a while.  I sat across from my dad, my nose still stuffed from at least 8 or 10 tissues full of snot leak specific to him.

Life is surreal, its own weird storm.   Its own odd, ubiquitous light shining out of its clouds of grey.  Words, this is my co-created prayer to you–of you–of thanks for no matter the place, always yielding your own kind of quiet grace.