I Went to the Woods and Lost 20 Years

big treeSunday husband and I went to the woods, and I lost 20 years.

The big trees did it. The forest. The old growth. My pain-free knee. All contributed to my youthing process.

I read somewhere that old growth trees have over the years accumulated silica into their trunks. And when we are surrounded by that silica, it contributes to our well-being. Notice the difference sometime if you have an opportunity to experience the big trees. T

Husband dear and I drove out east of Eugene, Oregon along the McKenzie River. Yep, I know I talked of that area before when we made the same drive during the summer. Now though, we wanted to see the area during its golden-leaf time before deciduous tree hibernation when the forest throws the gray cloak of winter over its sleeping trees.

This trip also gave us a brunch for the soul, a stop at the Obsidian Grill at McKenzie Bridge. I’m raving again. That sandwich was just as good the second and third time as the first. I love the Obsidian chicken sandwich—happy organic chickens they say, artisan bun smeared with what appeared to be Cajun spices, a poblano pepper, bacon, they didn’t scrimp on the lettuce tomato or onion, and whatever their secret sauce is adds a vast amount of juice that takes a dozen napkins to sop up. It’s great. I had enough bacon and chicken to share with Sweet Pea.

The forest walk reminded me of something Dolores LaChapelle, author of Earth Wisdom wrote: “Patanjali, Buddha, Moses, and Jesus did not go to workshops or seminars or even churches. They went directly to nature; sat under a Bodhi tree or on top of a mountain or in a cave. We’ve been living off the residual remains of their inspiration for thousands of years, but this has almost run out. It is time to return to the source of this inspiration—the earth itself.”

Mine was just a little walk in the woods, A Hors d’oeuvre, a taste of the wilderness, but then we came home, and I had a Deja-Vu.

In Hawaii, we had no refrigerator.

Not again!

Our present fridge was on the fritz. It worked, but husband dear said we must defrost the refrigerator and the freezer for a water leakage had caused ice to build up behind the back panel.

In Hawaii, we used an ice chest for months. To celebrate getting a loan on the house we bought a refrigerator. It remained up-plugged though, for we didn’t have enough solar power to run it.

Instead of using electricity, we used ice. Used to be people got a block of ice from an iceman who carried that massive chunk of frozen water on his shoulder, dumped it into your icebox, and that ice kept your food cold for a week or until the ice man came again.

The Deja Vu came when I loaded some items in an ice chest. My choice, for I didn’t want to be running to the refrigerator in the Way-back every few minutes.

We do have an extra refrigerator, thanks to our California experience where we rented a house without one, bought one and hauled it to Oregon with us. Now we have two, well three, another in the Way-back that we inherited. The trouble is it doesn’t get cold but is beautiful, so it’s a possibility someday.

I figured the Universe was making up for denying us refrigerators for a time.

A thousand years ago a Zen Master wrote this poem:
Magical power,
marvelous action!
Chopping wood,
carrying water…”

On the road to enlightenment (ahem, I’m not claiming anything), one must still do the minutia of life, chop wood and carry water. The editors of NEW AGE JOURNAL wrote a book with that title: Chop Wood, Carry Water, and their take is a bit different from what I initially thought it meant.

Not only must we chop wood and carry water, meaning take care of business, but our spiritual journey can be because of it.

We do not need to spend our lives sitting piously on a mountain, our life, our journey, comes from the living of it.

I failed my spiritual test as I carried frozen food to the Way-back refrigerator. With all my grunting and grumbling and throwing a few expletives, the Universe would not have given me a gold star.

But then maybe She doesn’t care. It was my choice. I could accomplish a task with a glad heart or have a fit.

A screaming fit still gets the job done!

But it’s not so great on our nervous system.

Oh well, I’ll get another chance when I haul all those frozen items back into the house and put our in-house refrigerator back together again.

P..S. This is super cool:



I Don’t Need a Water Purifier, But I Need This…


Last Saturday as Daughter number two and I were driving away from Chevy’s Mexican restaurant in Portland Oregon, I asked a question, “How do we change our beliefs?”

I have a problem believing my book will sell, “ I continued, maneuvering the Prius onto an already full freeway. “We have a guardian at the door of our subconscious, and when we say something like, “I’m going to sell a million books,” the guardian throws it out. 

The voice in our head says, ‘What makes you think that? You’ve never sold many before.’ 

Every time we try to get past the guardian, he counters our request.

“’You can’t do that. You don’t have a great following. Your platform sucks, people don’t need and don’t want another book. Besides people don’t read books anymore. And they have better things to do with their money.’”

What an obnoxious guardian! 

I know the first line of receiving is believing that it’s possible. But, we ask, “How do we believe in the face of conflicting evidence?”

Wise daughter countered: “Maybe you should treat the Guardian like a water purifying system salesman.

“’I don’t want a water purifier,’ you say.”

Just let me show you this one.”

I don’t need a purifying system. “

“’Oh, you’ll like this one, and I need the experience explaining it. It’ll only take a minute.’”

I don’t have a minute.’”

“’Okay, half a minute.’”

Just don’t take no for an answer,” she says.

Wow, what a concept, that just might work.”

Beat the Guardian at his own game.

We started laughing and remembering another time at a Chevy’s restaurant. We were in Rancho Santa Fe, California.

Yes, I know much is accomplished with a glad heart, and not having a charge on a request makes it easy to receive. When we really really really want something, the Guardian comes out dressed in full battle regalia.

That day in Rancho Santa Fe, having completed our meal, and with glad hearts, we sat looking out a restaurant window talking about manifesting. Daughter dear had been testing the concept of manifesting, that is putting out a request, meditating on it, then waiting for it to show up. She had asked to see a purple bear. 

Within a day she saw a purple bear sticker on the bumper of a car.

Chances are,” I said, (I sound like the Guardian here), “we couldn’t manifest a train here for there are no tracks.

Not a minute later, a big truck stopped for a traffic light and was sitting right outside our window. A huge tan tarp covered the back portion of the truck. The tarp was taunt, and neatly ratcheted.

On the side of that tarp written in big capital letters was one word: “TRANE.”

That bowled us over, and it has given us a glad heart and a giggle every time we think of it.

Believe in the possible.

P.S. Regarding Salespeople:        

The ones that attempt to sell you inferior merchandise, at an exorbitant price, something you don’t need and didn’t want are con-artists.       

A  true salesperson will assist you in the purchase of something you do want, or maybe give you reasons why you ought to have it, and push you a little for as a buyer we can always put off a purchase.

 “Tomorrow,” we say, and we leave without the very thing we were looking for. We lost, and so did the salesperson.   

Think of it this way: You want a car, you need a car, and you are looking for a car. The salesperson wants you to buy from him—since he is in a competitive market, and relying on commissions to pay the bills.        

You trust him or her. She is nice; she negotiates a good deal for you, so you buy.

A year later you are still driving your car, it’s in good condition, and you’ve had no trouble with it, but the salesperson, who depended on your commissions to pay the bills, has spent the money and has nothing from your deal to show for it—except still being alive.

Who’s the winner here?