I’m Leaving On a Jet Plane…

…for a couple weeks’ worth of visit to the Fatherland. Checking in with you from the airport, waiting for the first leg of the flight.


Here’s Steve, yesterday, waiting in the bag for me to stop fussing with such unnecessary things as which clothes to take, and get on with packing him up already.

Posting might be somewhat intermittent in the next bit, but we’ll try to keep you updated.

Life, the Universe, and Travels. See you later!



We interrupt our spate of regular blog postings for these messages, uh, reasons, uh, excuses – that’s it, excuses:

calendula oil
an early stage of zucchini salsa

Life, the Universe, and Harvest Season. See you on the other side.




I was all upset this morning about having my walk ruined. The person who owns the property at the end of the road, where the pavement ends, completely blocked off access to the forest road where I like to go to the lookout. I think there’s new owners on that property; the previous owners put a big gate across the road to stop vehicles, but still allowed locals to skirt around the edge of the gate so they could go for a walk. This morning, there are bars nailed across the side of the gate. No Trespassing, Private Property.

I was so pissed off I cried. Just when I was starting to develop a habit of going for a walk in the mornings (I desperately need the exercise)… I even called the town hall to see if there was maybe some rule about public right of way to get to crown land, something that would force those curmudgeonly curmudgeons¬† to let me walk across their driveway and up the hill to where you get that stunning view right over the lake. But no such luck – private property is private property.

IMG_20150729_112224I almost posted a snarky status on Facebook about it, complaining about this mean-spirited injustice that was done to me. Almost, but not quite.

And then I was browsing my Facebook feed, and all of a sudden perspective struck me a blow right across the face. You see, I read a post by the husband of a friend who died of cancer just a few months ago. And as I was reading his outpouring of pain, of how desperately he misses his wife, of his struggles in being both father and mother to their children, of the gaping, aching hole that her death left behind – my own irritation and disappointment shrunk down to its proper size.

IMG_20150729_112153Yes, I’m sad about my cut-off walk. But it’s such a small issue in comparison. So not a big deal. This upset that filled my whole vision an hour ago all of a sudden has become a small dot on the radar screen of reality. Yes, the irritation remains (and I still hope that the property owner can be induced to let us neighbours walk through once in a while). But really, it matters so little.

Life, the Universe, and a Reality Check. I’m thankful I had my perspective adjusted.


Ocean Soul

ocean (6)ocean (2)I’m an ocean soul. At least once a year, I need to get myself down to the sea and stick my feet into the water. Yes, I live by a lake (several, in fact), and yes, it’s incredibly beautiful and I’m fully appreciative of that fact. But there is something about the ocean that lakes don’t have to offer – something about the salt water, the tang of sea air in the wind, the raucous screech of the seagulls, the tides rolling in and out over shells and sea weed and little tide pools, the driftwood logs and rocks and sand – something that feeds my soul. I’ve had some of my best moments of insight, of personal clarity, when I’m walking along the shore, wading through sea water, the gentle surf breaking over my feet. I don’t know why, but there seems to be a connection between sea water, my feet, and the well-being centre of my brain (maybe a reflexologist would have something to say about that – minerals absorbing through the bottom of the feet and triggering useful thoughts? Uh, yeah, whatever).

ocean (3)ocean (7)The coast is about five hours’ drive away from where I live, and I’m fortunate enough to have family there on whom I can drop in whenever I like. So this weekend, I did just that – I took a spontaneous mini-holiday. I’d hoped to get some time to do a bunch of writing – work on the next book – but that didn’t materialise. Instead, I went shopping, did a bunch of visiting, experienced an orthodox church service (never been to one of those before – it was beautiful), and today, had my trip to the ocean beach. Steve came along (see pictures), and I stuck my feet in the water, walked over the ebb sands, let the mud squash up between my toes, picked up a pretty shell and dropped it again, picked up another and set it sailing on the water, sat on the sun-warmed sand leaning on a driftwood log and drew a picture of a seagull (the darn thing wouldn’t sit still), let the wind blow me about (it was almost cold – bliss!), and all around got my fill of the pleasure that being by the ocean is for me.¬†And yes – once again, I have greater clarity of what my life is, and where I am meant to go; for the next little while, at least. I let the ocean wash over my toes and over my soul, and I feel better for it.

ocean (5) ocean (1)Life, the Universe, and an Ocean Soul. I will be back again – soon.

ocean (4)