As I told someone earlier, today is my last night here and already I am bereft feeling. I do not want to go home! I have fallen in love with this form of being. Every day I rise in the dark without an alarm, make a pot of coffee and just sit outside and breathe in the day. I hear the pre-dawn birds, and the little unseen animal rustlings, and of course, the owls. When I swing open the doors of the van, once light hits, I can see the slow flow of the river’s wind-touched surface.
My brain has been trying to sort through the why this feels so good, so light. I’d say it is the touch of fall in the air, but on Thursday it was 125 degrees in my van. Yes, you read that right. I know for certain I could have fried eggs on the solar panels – maybe cooked a roast even! There have been challenges, like no sun yesterday, so without a friend lending a socket, I’d have been without power by mid-day yesterday. There has been the creepy camper dude who moved his tent just about into my space. There has been the feral cat thievery of a steak from my grill (who knew cats would brave fire for meat??). But there have also been extended periods of music-draped navel gazing, brisk walks in the woods, and conversations with new and interesting people. I have befriended a cockatoo named Oliver and made acquaintance with he-who-shall-not-be-named the prairie dog. And, I learned that leopard gecko tails are a mimicry of their heads as a defense mechanism against predators (I often get my head and my @ss confused, so maybe that’s why I am still alive too!)
What it all boils down to, I think, is the limitation of choice. I have five outfits, so I’m wearing one of those. I have limited food options and an even smaller selection of utensils and cooking tools. “Housekeeping” consists of a whisk broom once over, the washing of a fork or a spoon, and a swish of a bowl. Voila, done! Then one’s mind is free, eyes are affixed on something outside, something natural, unformed by human hands. From monster sized iridescent beetles down to tiny spiders and no-see-ums (which despite their name, can be seen in the night up against a computer screen, lol), the sights and sounds of the natural world take precedent over our made world. This is like salve on a wound I didn’t know I have, akin to those weird bruises that show up, or little scrapes that you can’t recall actually doing anything to get. When balm is applied to them, the skin sighs and thanks you. The same response apparently, that my spirit reacts with after a week of outdoor exposure.
At this moment, wrens are fussing outside the doors, and a woodpecker is scoping out a meal tree. Crickets are chirping and a breeze is wrapping around the trees and giving the leaves a good shake. Something startled some unseen ground birds and they gave a sudden rise from the underbrush in a noisy clutch.
I am off to breakfast with some new friends, and then I hope to get a stroll down main street in, as well as some reading and listening to music.
May I suggest, if your insides are knotted, tired or nervous, a trip around the yard or a park and just look and listen. You may find your cares, worries and weights carried away on that gentle breeze and a smile upon your face. It is a good day to be alive.
From on the road, wishing you well,