😋#Houselife Day 1: The Kitchen Chronicles

Dear diary,

It is the first day living in a house after more than 2 1/2 years living houseless. A short-term 1 month experiment. I know living inside can be extremely dangerous, but you know me, I’ll try almost anything once.

I have installed some of my food items and spices on two slabs sticking out horizontally from the wall. They appear to be made of a tree-like material, though the roots, branches, bark are nowhere to be seen. It has been very useful in organizing my stock.

Also in the room there is a large white box with doors. Inside the air is cold like winter or like the microclimate in the shade of a large oak tree, except light is emitted from a sun-like bulb, the size of a soaproot. But the little sun is cold, not hot like fire. I’ve decided to put some of my forage inside as an experiment. If it turns out to be evil and devour it, I’ll have to stick to the old ways.

Finally, there is a silver stick extending over a white box elevated a few feet off the ground (which is covered with a very strange substance, no leaf litter, and completely flat!!). At first I thought the silver branch was for hanging my hat on. But then I turned the little levers to either side and found water just pouring out!! (My hat got soaked). When I pull the right lever, hot water streams out. How is that even possible?! The creek and river never do that, except in very few and isolated instances. I have to admit, I do like it.

However, no birds or beetles or caterpillars have appeared. Not a single deer, fox, or bobcat has commuted through the room. No green neighbor lives in this room. So weird!! And when I look up it’s just plain flat white, no clouds, no stars, no breeze. It make me a little lonely.

But Nothing terrible has happened, and I’ll continue to monitor the environment (both outer and inner) and report back. It is National Burrito Day, so a celebration may be in order later. You know, as an experiment. But first: popcorn with nutritional yeast and coconut oil🍿

The Habits of Sunset Moonrise

img_2228Recently I find myself adopting an evening ritual. Taking my pillow and blanket down to the beach before sunset, I change out of my shorts into long pants and lay down to read and write. Tonight it was the beautiful masterpiece Refuge by Terry Tempest Williams and the jotting down the beginnings of a poem about being bumped by a whale. So many poignant passages in Refuge:

“I am slowly, painfully discovering that my refuge is not found in my mother, my grandmother, of even the birds of Bear River. My refuge exists in my capacity to love. If I can learn to love death then I can begin to find refuge in change.”

The full moon stands up in the east, the epitome of change, the later summer sun reclines to the west. Seagulls soar and sandpipers scurry, while sand flies feast on rotting seaweed.

As it floats under the horizon, I add layers and sit up to meditate. Sometimes I can, sometimes not. Tonight I ‘fail’ after a few minutes.

But I do notice how this ocean seems to somehow simultaneously embody change and permanence, stillness and motion. I think this is the same ocean I saw up north earlier this summer. 🙂

Sometimes it is too powerful for me to handle. I’m a man of the mountains and forest and cornfields, not waves. I confess, it’s a mystery to me.

Yet I realize now that everything waves.

But lately it is soothing. It washes out all that is still too rigid in me. Then I change once again into sleeping clothes and climb into the car for the night, the eye of the moon shining down on me, a silent collaborator.