Sunday, June 29, 2008

Simple Joy

I am a simple man, as you can tell by my blog design, but I am not simplistic. I have found there is no need for grand extravagance to find joy. All you need do is to notice what makes you smile. For me, it is these:

The smell of the coffee beans when you first open the bag.

A breeze that lingers in the blinds.

The way my daughter sings/says "aww" when she thinks something's cute.

The tenacity in my boy's eyes when he runs the basepath.

Seeing the steam rise out of my coffee cup while sitting in the morning sun.

The way my son works.

Throwing rocks at the lake.

Being woken by the brightness of sunshine.

Realizing that I am loved.

Watching my kids be themselves.

The promise of a day with sunshine AND heat.

I am a simple man, but joy is also simple. If you find it you will have found grand extravagance.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Allergy Schmallergy!

Okay, so what if I'm allergic to summer, I've got to live with it. So today my youngest and I went to one of our favorite summer spots which is this freezing cold water stream with an amazing waterfall. Not many people even know about it around here. At least, that is what I surmise each time we go there and we are the only humans there.

The entrance to the creek is just a few feet away from the road, which is a meandering somewhat uninhabited country road that is flanked by the river on one side and woodsy hillsides on the other. The drive itself is almost worth the effort, but really it's the creek that makes it worthwhile for us.

For the first minute or so we try to traverse the edge of the water so as to keep our feet out of the frigid water. And when I say frigid I mean it's the kind of cold that makes your ankles ache right there in the back where your Achilles meets your heel. Bone chilling cold. But after your foot slips off the top of a mossy, slippery rock you simply succumb to the the facts. You will get wet. Your bones will ache. For a while.

We had a great time today realigning the flow of the water. That is to say, moving rocks and limbs out of jambed up crevices to allow the water to rip through in a new direction. Once we reached the waterfall we sat in the sun on the mist-soaked rocks and enjoyed the awe of it all.

Suddenly I'm not so allergic to summer after all.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

It's Official...

...I can tell by the my scratchy throat, my runny nose and watery eyes.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

How it really happened

Once, in the town of Joyville there lived a man named Jimmy John Joseph Kruk. Although that was his given name, if he had a preference--which he rarely did--he preferred to be call simply 'Kruk'.
Kruk was a recluse that lived on the east side of Joyville. It is said around town that what caused him to hide away in the cabin he called home was a childhood scare. It seems that when he was a boy and the Kruks lived over on the west side near the river, Kruk had wandered off by himself as boys are prone to do. His wandering led him down to the river's edge where he happened upon a mud bog. Well, as boys are also prone to do, he got a little too curious there and before he knew it he was waist deep in mud. Stuck he was. He was stuck some say for hours. Finally, as night was tripping into a full fall, his brother found him and rescued him. From that day forward Kruk was more likely to be found indoors than out. He did not like out. No matter how hard the town's folk tried to entice him, he did not venture out. After a while they gave up trying.

Now in this same town lived a diminutive girl named Stacey. Stacey may have been small, but she was large in spirit. In fact, she was known to skip around town saying, "I may be tiny, but I am mighty and someday I will do what not one of the rest of you can do." While she herself wasn't sure what that meant, the rest of the town was convinced she was right.

One summer night near the end of a summer that was peculiarly dry and hot, Little Stacey was seen running full-speed from the river straight way to Kruk's house. All the while she ran, she sang "I may be tiny but I am mighty, I may be tiny but I am mighty". No one is sure why, but on this particular night the way she sang it piqued the curiosity of all who heard it. She sounded as if she had a mission and tonight was the night. The curiosity was such that the townfolk followed her all the way to Kruk's house. When she arrived she ran right in without so much as a knock, much less a hesitation. A few moments later, to the surprise of all that had gathered--which included by this time a photographer for the Chronicle--Stacey emerged with a smiling Kruk on her arm. Someone shouted, "what happened Stacey? How did you do this??" To which she happily and triumphantly replied, "There's no mud in Joyville. The mighty Stacey has Kruk out!"

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Shingle and Re-tired

I have some interesting people on my route. I guess in some way or another everybody is interesting. To somebody. Anyway, as has been my practice in the past I'm going to show you a picture of somebody's house. The interesting somebodys that live at this particular house are artists...can you tell?? Check out the shingle work!
(Look closely at the roof. It's made out of tires. Yes. Real tires.)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Things I Don't Get

Many times during a day I will find myself saying this to myself: "I wonder why that is." I mean, let's face it, there are lots of things I just don't get.

For instance--today, in a field that had just been cleared of it's wind rows of grass for silage, I saw 21 bald eagles. Twenty one! They were scattered all about a field of about ten acres or so and every one of them was facing the same direction. Not one of them looked as though it was going anywhere anytime soon. It was as if one of them--the leader, I suspect--called a meeting and they were waiting for it to begin. Weird. Very, very cool, but weird nonetheless.

Another little something that I don't get, and it bugs me to no end--why is that anyone would go UNDER the posted speed limit? After all, the road has been specifically designed for a vehicle to travel at a particular speed. They post the speed on a sign. Pretty simple. Essentially, the sign is saying 'It's safe to travel 55 MPH on this road' and yet people take it into their own hands to mistrust the engineers who studied and computed the speed limit and proceed at a snail's pace. To me, it's like going to the store with a 50 percent off coupon and telling the checker, "No, really. I only want 30 percent off. Whoever handed out these coupons must be nuts, you'll never make any money this way. 50 seems way outta line! 30 will be fine, thanks." It makes no sense at all to me.

And lastly....what ever happened to courtesy? Where did it go? How did it become passe? I sat at a crosswalk in front of a high school for what seemed like an eternity today because most of today's kids have no courtesy. None. They meandered in front of me like those cows that never come home; like ants that couldn't find their farm. To say that they were oblivious would be giving them too much credit. They were ignorant of oblivion. Maybe one of the new courses next year should be "How to behave in a society full of people that care about others." I doubt anyone would care to sign up.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Rain Rain Go Away

Washingtonians don't tan, we rust.

Here it is the 6th day of June and the sun has yet to be seen this month.

We have a rain festival here in Washington. It runs from January 1 until December 31.
It's not exciting, but 50 million slugs can't be wrong.

May we rust in peace.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

I Got The Music In Me

I found this fun little widget today on another blog so I thought I'd try it.

They say you can learn a lot about a person by the music he/she listens to...but who are "they" and what do they know anyway??These are a just a snippet of some of my favoritest songs.

I hope it works.