Leaping upstream with tree frogs, crickets, Gordy and musical friends

As the rabbit said in Alice in Wonderland, “The hurrier I go, the behinder I get.” Not to say that I am rushing, but the meandering has turned into steadily plugging away or as a friend wrote me this week, “At this point you must feel like a mighty salmon struggling up a 10,000 mile river trying to reach her spawning grounds in Seattle.” This feels so appropriate at the moment that I laugh at the analogy and hope that I won’t have to die after I spawn! Continue reading

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Two gems in two and a half days

“All we do is go out and drink in Milwaukee,” said my sweet friend Caitlin as she showed me her town. And appropriately she took me to four bars the evening I arrived. When in Rome…

Caitlin is another acting buddy. She just finished her undergrad in acting at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee and is heading to NYC in August for grad school. I am so proud of her and was more than excited to spend time with her and enjoy the hospitality of her parents’ home. Continue reading

To Audrey, with love

I have sweat dripping down in the hollow of my lower back. I am in Chicago staying with my daughter in her cute studio apartment that does not have air-conditioning and I am trying to get used to being damp. I don’t like it, it makes me lazy, sticky, grumpy and in a bit of a muddle. But being with my daughter is making up for the discomfort. She is a delight and we are spending a lot of time gabbing in cafes, drinking great coffee, playing cards, getting a pedicure, laying on the beach, sleeping (or trying to sleep in my sweaty case), eating great food, going to a movie, and playing with her foster cats. Continue reading

Bird on my belfry

You can not stay on the summit forever;
You have to come down again.
So why bother in the first place?
Just this:
What is above knows what is below,
But what is below does not know what is above.
One climbs, one sees.
One descends, one no longer sees, but one has seen.
There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up.
When one can no longer see, one can still know. -Rene Daumal

Parliament Hill, Ottawa, ON

This poem was on one of my favorite facebook pages, Biodesign Out For a Walk, and boy, did it hit home. I have been feeling this distance from the mountain tops, the climbs of the early part of my trip. This week was spent mostly in large cities in Canada, walking my feet off in rising temperatures, with my jaw dropping at the sight of 14th and 15th century architecture rather than million year old mountainsides. Don’t get me wrong, it has been phenomenal, but this poem speaks where my heart could only wonder. As I have descended into busy populated zones I am recalling more of the memory of what I have seen. Continue reading

Pink sunsets, table cloths, my life through rose colored glasses, la vie en rose

Quebec City, Canada has been one of those places to hold a tremendous amount of mystery for me. I had heard stories, seen pictures and thought “this is a place I definitely have to see someday,” along with the pyramids of Egypt, the fiords of Norway, the beaches of Greece and the ruins of Machu Picchu. Now I am on the other side of the wish, and it was even more magical than I expected. Continue reading

The Good, the Bad and the Bugly

If crabs, lobster rolls, ice cream and used books are appealing then head up to northern Maine. I passed lobster and ice cream shacks, a spiral staircase shop, and a used bookstore in a chicken shed on little country roads, and thought I was in heaven. But I didn’t have time to stop as I wanted to get to Bar Harbor in time for a 4th of July cookout at my motel. The hosts were feeding everyone, grilling all kinds of meat, and I met the family, was fascinated by the Maine accents (from Bah Hahba), visited with other guests (like the Oscar Madison know-it-all talking with his mouth STUFFED full), and listened to a bagpiper playing on a rock overlooking the beach. The ambience was enlivening and I felt a thousand miles away from my normal world, I guess I was. Continue reading

Me and Otis watchin’ the ships roll in

Well, I needed rest and I got it. After an extremely warm, enthusiastic welcome from an old friend, Marjie, I was like a hibernating bear for a few days. She extended her hospitality and told me I could stay as long as I wanted, coming and going as I pleased. I didn’t know it, but I really needed to hear that as I had been feeling a forward momentum push and was rung out. She lives in Dover, New Hampshire, right near Portsmouth on the Atlantic Ocean. I sought my solace in ocean views of lighthouses, little islands and sea smells. I took three nights and crashed. Marjie had to work all the days, so I was able to sleep in and recharge my batteries. What a gift this was to a weary traveler. Continue reading

The Madwoman of Massachusetts

Sue’s lovely yard

I can tell by my photos, or lack of them, that I am weary. It must be time to refuel. I had two quick visits with friends in Massachusetts and I could feel the weight of the heat and humidity pulling me down. I spent a night in Feeding Hills (great name) with a friend that was my upstairs neighbor 30 years ago. We have kept in contact all these years even after she moved to the opposite coast. It was a lovely visit to her rural farm, an oasis for catching up, but one night was not nearly long enough. Continue reading

The three phases of Me

“I dwell in Possibility
A fairer House than Prose
More numerous of Windows
Superior for Doors”
– Emily Dickinson

I started this trip rather clueless, not sure what I was looking for or why but knowing it was time for leaping. The first “section” of the journey seemed to be about returning to nature and rediscovering my absolute need and desire for connecting to the mountains, canyons, deserts, rocks, trees, wildlife, you name it, I was hungry for nature. Hiking brought me closer to my soul and more in touch with myself and I discovered once again that this body, this being, is just great the way I am, for who I am, without the trappings of what I do or who I’m related to. Continue reading