Our water baby loves a dip in Weir Hot Springs in Idaho.

Our Own Piles of Leaves | Poem + Photos

Posted on 2 CommentsPosted in Cultivating Creativity, Reflections on Life

Sometimes the falling leaves feel heavy, brown, smothering

adding up to all the moments I wasn’t quite enough

for me, my son, my parents, my husband, my everyone

burying possibility in a dank pile of mush.

 

But sometimes the falling leaves feel floaty, golden, freeing

each one an echo of an imperfectly grateful exhale

that becomes the laugh I least expected

forming piles of possibility in layers of fading sunlight.

 

The sun hides for months on end in these latitudes

sleet and slush the begrudged and grungy visitor

plastered in a haze across our once-bright windows

shrouding the memories of headlong hedonism.

 

I never welcome the grungy grey gracefully

but rather struggle to find the golden in the brown.

It always turns out, though, that freedom from smother

is simply the gratitude for good.

 

Open-mouthed kisses blown from wide-spread fingers

A husband sleeping on the couch to give his wife a quiet bed

Ukelele strums with mumbled half-assed harmonies

A photo book made with painstakingly perfect captions and colors.

 

Meanwhile, the leaves fall like so many stories

each one sighing through the air with its own

weight and momentum

settling into the piles that layer our lives.

 

Kayaking and canoeing the lower Flathead River with friends.
Kayaking and canoeing the lower Flathead River with friends.
Scenic cliffs on the lower Flathead River, full of swallows sailing through the sky.
Scenic cliffs on the lower Flathead never disappoint, full of swallows sailing through the sky.
"Where would YOU drop the crab pot? And do you think it's weird that the trap is bigger than our packraft?"
“Where would YOU drop the crab pot? And do you think it’s weird that the trap is bigger than our packraft?”
Our water baby loves a dip in Weir Hot Springs in Idaho.
Our water baby loves a dip in Weir Hot Springs in Idaho.
Our Philly-based visitors are psyched on the natural outdoor hot tub!
Our Philly-based visitors are psyched on the natural outdoor hot tub!
Fields like these make your heart sigh each fall.
Fields like these make your heart sigh each fall.
A brief picnic during our mushroom-hunting hike around Tally Lake in Montana.
A brief picnic during our mushroom-hunting hike around Tally Lake in Montana.
How doesn't love a good pile of autumn leaves?
Who doesn’t love a good pile of autumn leaves?
Talon kind of, sort of helps rake leaves.
Talon thinks he helps rake the leaves (but actually just drags them across the road).

A Typical Baja Beginning

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Outdoor Adventures, Traveling

baja sailing - on the horizon line blog

We made it to Mark and Katie!  And it only took an extra 3 hours more than planned, with only half the expected cost.  In Mexico, that’s quite a success story.

After leaving Missoula at 5:30 AM in the dark, chilly mountain air, we landed in SanJose del Cabo Airport at the southern tip of the Baja Californ
ia peninsula at 3:45 PM.  We’d hoped to take a bus directly from the airport at 4:30 PM, but …. well, it’s Mexico.  Though we had boarding passes written up by the cashier, we were a tad late in handing over the pesos, so the driver left without us.  “Siento,” he said, in an un-sorry voice.  “Bus is full.  They will call another driver.”  And how long would that take, did he think?  “Oh, 40 minutes.  Maybe 2 hours.  Hard to say.”

hummingbird in nest-smAfter much hemming and hawing in a mix of two languages, turns out the cashier REALLY wanted to go home.  She said it would be “mas rapido” to take a taxi to the nearest tiny town and grab a different bus from there.  Santa Anita didn’t have a lot going for it, except for the highway running through its center.  After a confusing round of differing instructions from a variety of helpful (but not always right) people, we finally bought tickets for the 6:00 PM bus (which showed up at 7:00).

The coolest part of the delay: as we waited with ice cream sandwiches on the side of the highway for our bus, Rob spotted a humming bird fly into a scrubby tree on the highway median.  He snuck up and saw it sitting  on a nest … the first hummingbird we’ve ever seen on a nest!  And beneath it?  Two tiny eggs the size of Altoid mints.

bri yoga on dock w selkieMark and Katie were planning to greet us at the Malecon in La Paz at 730 PM after our 3 hour bus ride. Luckily, we used our handy DeLorme InReach (more on this nifty tool later) to send them a message that we’d arrive at 10:00 PM instead.  After a Pacifico and empanadas, we all snuggled down on Selkie for the night.  And I did some dock yoga this morning, too.

Now we’re packing up to go explore some remote beaches for a bit.  Well, Rob and I are already packed.  The trick is fitting the 4 of us, our big bags, a golden retriever and an inflatable kayak in a tiny Subaru for a week of camping.  Stay tuned for pictures of that tetris game.  Hasta luego!

packing for todos santos

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