Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Summer: Not Over Yet!

A really pretty old sewing machine
The only thing more fleeting than childhood is summer...

Yes, that's an advertising tagline, for a group that send underprivileged city kids to camp.  But it strikes a chord.

Some friends are moving, and they have a bucket list to do in town before they leave.  In an exercise of "counting my blessings", I'm cataloging my summer in a reverse bucket list, to measure the good stuff I've done these past few months that surprised me with their simple good feelings.  Here goes. 

I toured a metal-work shop and geeked out on old, rusty metal sewing machines that would eventually be used in different designs.  I walked through gardens with kohlrabi plants (I wanted to sneak a taste but they weren't ripe) and hiking trails, such as the Little Bear, that reopened after the Schulz Fire of 2010, where the persistence of nature amazed me.

 I saw beautiful sunsets over Lake Buttsky in the Midwest, a shy bride at a wedding in the open air at the Portland Arboretum, and a few rainbows over my beloved Mt. Elden as I drove home.  The Lake Buttsky sunsets made me giddy; the rainbows made me nostalgic; and the bride just made me cry.

I held my 94 year old Grandma's hand and soaked her up.  I touched the rocks in the hand-made silo at my other Grandma's childhood homestead and imagined all my ancestors who worked the land I stood on.

I skipped the 4th of July parade and rode a horse for 3 hours, trotting on an open trail, tasting real freedom.  I spent an afternoon listening to my 2nd cousin play her own songs on her new banjo and tell me about her loves.  I've taken my son to a baseball game, hiked with him, and discussed important philosophical questions with him.  "Who's funnier?  Seinfeld or The Marx Bros.?  George Lopez or Buster Keaton?"

New Banjo--ain't it a beaut?
My horoscope this week told me to "Come up with your own definitions about what's gorgeous and revelatory. Take epiphanies any way you can get them."

Beautiful wedding

A beautiful old silo at my Grandma's Homestead

I'm paying attention to these last days of summer, trying to find the last quirky pockets of pleasure and soulful beauty.  And because they can never be repeated  exactly the same, they will always be the last things.  Everything is extremely poignant! 

I'm looking really carefully so I don't miss anything!