Welcome to a Nice Round Number

Mmmm. I'm cozied-in up in the Great White North, illuminated in a glow of ultra-white from the persistent snow outdoors reflecting diffuse sunlight in through the windows of my winter retreat. I think it is warmer today, but I am not sure because I haven't been outdoors yet and I am sitting on the couch adorned with the electric blanket and my woolen slippers and leg warmers are doing their jobs well.

It's morning and school is in session so there is no sound of kids gleefully bombing the toboggan hill they constructed on the weekend just outside my porch door. If I were a daring sort, I might envision taking a flying leap right off my second floor balcony onto the top of the run. But that's a pretty good gap. Maybe off the roof then, but the pitch is at the wrong angle. Ah well.

At long last I have posted a selection of photographs from the summer of 2009 and the activities enjoyed: camping, fishing, hiking, foraging and cooking up meals on campfires! Despite a long campfire ban, almost every weekend through the summer was spent on the camp. The heat was hard to beat, but by seeking out the coolest nearby temperatures and then finding a high-altitude lake at that location, preferably 4x4 required for access (to reduce incidence of camping near other people), it was possible to stay somewhat comfortable through the hot summer. There were a few days out there though that pushed my limits.

I wonder where is the most sun, the least precipitation, and the coolest weather. It would be some kind of desert I would imagine? So maybe not the least precipitation and the most sun, but how about the coolest temps mixed with about 30 days of rain a year, and no more than 15 days a year over 80F? That would be ideal. Avg temp around 70 with partial sun and no chance of flooding.. that would be nice.

In any case, these pictures, reflect but a tiny percentage of all that was experienced and enjoyed these last months. Regrettably, both my aging digital cameras have developed lens flaws and I get frustrated by the dark spots in my pics, so I stopped taking photographs almost entirely for awhile now. I would like to get a new camera, but that will be a process and I've just had other things on my plate.

I'm so grateful for the opportunities and time I have had to explore the planet and get to know the earth in a new way, to develop a personal language with nature and a growing understanding of it from my own visceral experiences.

Breathing in the clean air of the remote, less inhabited areas nourishes and supports me. The peace and the quiet are like the finest velvet blankets that surround and warm me. Mental elevation has unobstructed passage, a manna of bliss, fast track to openness. Aural, and visual disturbances of the urban environment demand a body protect itself from the jarring vibrations, create defensiveness and a closed attitude. I would like to remain open. This challenges me.

May your goals be close enough to be attainable and yet far enough away to transform you.

The April-May Road Trip Album, 2008

Please enjoy photographs from the April-May 2008 Road Trip from Portland, Oregon to Montgomery, Texas and back. The trip down took us from Oregon into California and then down through Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and into Texas. The return trip included driving through Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, Idaho, and back to Oregon (and then, eventually, Seattle again.)

There was both snow and sweltering heat along the way.

Water bottles froze overnight in the tent at the Grand Canyon.

West Texas is absolutely beautiful. The Davis Mountains are rather unbelievably cool.

Spent a wonderful time with my family in Montgomery.

Tasted of the sulphur springs of Oklahoma.

We lost the tent in the return trip, too, in a pre-tornado storm that swept through Kansas on the night of April 30th. Within 15 minutes of having the tent set up and staked down, Shawn would be laying on top of the shattered shelter to keep it from being whisked away entirely. We spent some time in the howling wind trying to decide how to move the tent to a better spot before finally aborting and heading for a motel. We would later discover that every pole in the tent was in bits, with major rips in the seams of the tent, as well as the guy lines still being in the ground where they where originally staked (along with the canvas tabs that used to be attached to the tent.) Ah well.

New Photo Album Available

I have posted a few photos from the Rockaway Beach trip in Oregon this spring. I was so lucky to have a few beloved members of my family join me there.

I may be a bit out of touch for the next several days. I embark upon a new adventure. And we shall see what comes of the work.


Life in San Cristobal de las Casas

After a shy two weeks in Mexico, I am feeling settled into something of a routine and feeling comfortable with my surroundings. I have rented a scooter to get around town, and I can get to several places without using the map. My spanish is improving daily. I'm drinking coffee again because it is darn good here.

(pauses for a sip. mmmmm. even slightly cold it is delicious.)

I've created a new photo album of pics from the area. Enjoy.

A back of the napkin, spontaneous poem from my first attempt of going out alone, all dolled up, on a Saturday night in San Cristobal:

Still, a loud bar is a lonely place
whether there are others here, or not.
I'll one two.
I'll three four.
I'll lead this music with my four on the floor.
I'll take you on
one eye behind my back.

I didn't have a great time. Although I was really impressed with the DJs early set, as it got further into the night it got more typical "discoteque" and less interesting to me. But, the dude was spinning vinyl and that rocked me. I haven't seen anyone spinning vinyl in awhile. Maybe vinyl is still cheaper in Mexico than setting up an all e-rig. Ho hum.

I love you,

New Wisdom Available

I've added a another gallery of photographs from Thailand to the Images area of the website. The Wat Wisdom gallery includes images of Buddhist proverbs from at a Wat in Chiang Mai, within the old city walls.

Photo Albums Available

In the Images section of the website, there are 3 albums available for your perusal. The Thailand pictures are from fall 2007. Lake Washington is photographed in the summers of 2007 and 2008. The heart of beef was shot in Rockaway Beach in June 2008.