Tag Archives: quiet

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Simple and Gentle

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There are so many things I could be doing… so many I should be doing… other than listening to the neighbors newspapers thunk onto their driveways… other than watch my dog looking at nothing off the porch… other than sitting … Continue reading

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Doing the Needful

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“Do the needful” is an expression which means “do that which is necessary”, with the respectful implication that the other party is trusted to understand what needs doing without being given detailed instruction. The phrase is common in Indian English; … Continue reading

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The Value in Nothing

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It’s late again (for me).  Later than it should be.  Later than it could be.  And this morning I just don’t care.  I am sitting on the front porch.  My deer friend Eloise (I’ve named her Eloise… the one that … Continue reading

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O-Dark Thirty

So here I am, it’s o-dark thirty and I’m sitting with the dog on the porch.  A plane just took off, in the very still of early morning you can year them very clearly.  I miss the trains.  But planes … Continue reading

I Wanted Hostas

I wanted hostas.  What is it for you?  What is it that calls to your soul in a way that nothing else can?  In a way that you completely don’t understand?

013 012I tried valiantly to grow hostas in Texas. I bought the roots and amended the soil and watered them and really worked at growing them. Hostas really aren’t supposed to be that much work. They reall014y aren’t.

When I was a kid we had lilly of the valley and hostas growing around the front porch. Hostas seem to breed while you aren’t looking and they spread and take over the spaces they are allowed to take over. Lilly of the valley are pretty much the same. They just quietly grow and the next time you look, poof, they they are.

When we looked at the house we are living in now, the only pictures we found were of late in the year. The day we looked at the house for real it was RIGHT before Christmas and there was snow all around and it was cold and the green of the spring and summer had long since passed. I had NO idea what was in the flower bed (or for that matter that there even was a flower bed, all I knew for sure is that there were tallish bushes around the porch).

As spring approached, I was so excited to see what plants were going to inhabit the spaces around the house. I had my mom theive me some daffodils from around the farm where I grew up (mental note, I have to go soon and swipe myself some lilac suckers to grow) and I planted them so I knew I would at least have some spring color next year (this year too). Thre are azalias growing in my flower bed. There are my daffodils and even the annuals that I planted for color. And springing up in clumps all through the flower bed are the hostas.

There are several different kinds of hostas, in little clumps here and there. SOme are low to the ground and verigated, others are HUGE leaves and verigated in different ways. But they were here, waiting for me. Quietly beneath the ground. Waiting to welcome me home.

And here I sit. In the quiet of the morning, listening to my little gnome/dwarves water fountain spill its quiet music into the breeze, listening to the bees and the birds and the awakening neihborhood and the windchimes dancing to the water song, watching my garden grow. The hostas were waiting for me and they keep me company and make me smile.

I didn’t realize how much I missed the gentle easy green of spring or the coming back to life after a winter that was a real winter. I watch the hickory trees regain their leaves and the birch tree rustle in the breeze that isn’t even there. The robins and jays and the wood peckers join the squirrels that make random tree branches dance even when there IS no breeze to shake the leaves and the deer that visit at o’dark thirty on their way through the neighborhood. The round out the family.

The older I get the more connected I get. The more connected I get, the more I miss my roots. For me, the significance is in the hostas. And the hostas are filling the empty spaces.

A Morning Pearl Makes All The Difference

Dead Tree... gotta have at least one

Traveling less traveled (or maybe more traveled) places… 

I’ve been getting to work a little bit later than I’m used to the last couple mornings. I’ve discovered that I can avoid getting irritated at the drivers on the interstate if I (now get this) avoid the interstate. It isn’t something that I will likely do most days for my evening commute (it adds MORE time going home for some reason) but I think I’m going to start doing this for my morning commute.

It adds about 10 minutes to my commute. That’s because I can max out my speed at 40 MPH (5 over the posted 35) and spend half the commute at 30 and there are dozens and dozens of lights. But the commuters sharing this route with me seem to be of the same mind-set that I am. I am not in a hairy ass hurry to get there as long as I get there by starting time and it is better for my attitude if I mozy instead of getting run off the road by anal retentive idiots.

The commute takes me through communities. One, I think, is an Irish neighborhood, based on the bars that I pass. It passes the zoo. Churches, small neighborhood stores and kids on their way to school dot the way. I’m not sure if it is part of the attraction of my commute. I think it probably is.

I never really connected with Austin. I enjoyed things greatly about it. I will miss being able to go to Eeyore’s birthday. I will miss my first half marathon. I will miss the Labyrinth. People already have added to that list. I had friends (Scotty and Andrew… you are my Tin Man and my Scarecrow) that I miss.

My little boy I miss tremendously. I miss driving him into Austin. I miss the conversations that I’m sure that he never thought I listened to or took anything away from. I look at windows I pass… I lose myself in the windows I pass… I hear his voice echoing in my brain. I connected, most, to Austin through my baby boy.

He stayed behind to follow his heart. I understand that. It doesn’t make me miss him less, but it does fill me with pride and I love the young man that he has fallen in love with. Eventually I hope HE will talk to me, too. He has a job that he thinks he likes. He’s not the first garbage collector on the moon, but he is finding himself and he is realizing that he does have his roots and his wings.

I think about him a lot as I drive this route. There is much to see, much imput to absorb.

As much as I never really felt connected to Austin, I find myself connected here. It feels like home. Adam was not entirely right but not far off the mark. I could live in the middle of nowhere in the forest in a cabin with a creek if I had a good wifi connection. But I feel the heartbeat of this city. I lose myself in the doors (my version of Adam’s windows) and the architecture. I long to walk the streets of “down town” looking at the beautiful buildings that might be less well-kept than the shiny steel and glass of Austin but that have incredible character. You can almost hear the voices that have made this city home.

I lose myself in thought. I think about the conversations at Minntac… “you will look back with regret and you will someday ask what if”… Except I don’t regret. I would not be sitting where I am now if I hadn’t followed the path I took and learned what I learned. I wouldn’t be flexing my wings, yet again, and reinventing myself as I go.

My commute to here… to work… through life… is my commute and I am finding peace and quiet and connectedness. It is what it is. Today is what I have and what I have to do I have to do. Tomorrow will be my next today but for now, what I must do is the near..

Be the Best of Whatever You Are
Douglas Malloch

If you can’t be a pine on the top of the hill,
Be a scrub in the valley — but be
The best little scrub by the side of the rill;
Be a bush if you can’t be a tree.

If you can’t be a bush be a bit of the grass,
And some highway happier make;
If you can’t be a muskie then just be a bass —
But the liveliest bass in the lake!

We can’t all be captains, we’ve got to be crew,
There’s something for all of us here,
There’s big work to do, and there’s lesser to do,
And the task you must do is the near.

If you can’t be a highway then just be a trail,
If you can’t be the sun be a star;
It isn’t by size that you win or you fail —
Be the best of whatever you are!

I know that my view may not be the most popular. I know that everyone is supposed to strive to be what society views as a success. But… the older I get and the more I learn… the more I realize that I may not be a bass, but I think I might be the best little scrub I can be… and if I can encourage my babies to be the best bush/bass/bit of the grass that they can be… then I hope that they might be happy in themselves.