As I write this, I am sitting in a toasty Hotel room overlooking the Columbia River that is all gray and forlorn, but doing its forever song as it makes its way to the ocean.
I have a ground floor room with a sliding glass door leading out to a grassy strip that has a skim of snow on it, and beyond that is the river. The room is because of Sweetpea my little dog. People with dogs get a ground floor and an exit outside to the grass. A nice dog-friendly hotel.
My daughter at home took four days off work so we could make this trip, as I am normally at home with my grandson. But today, I am here.
I have this room because we thought we were going to a memorial on Saturday in The Dalles, Oregon, about 25 miles away. Since I wanted a couple of days as a writing retreat, I booked a room for myself Thursday and Friday, and then for Saturday when my husband and daughter would join me.
Severe weather warnings frightened people off as many were driving from a distance away, and so my brother postponed the memorial.
My eldest daughter opted out, and my husband decided to reschedule our time in The Dalles when we planned to see his family. So, here I am. Perfect. Now I get four days instead of two.
It’s what I have been asking for, time to myself to write and read. Time alone with only my dog and myself to care for. I feel like the scene from the movie Mary Poppins when she interviewed with Mr. Banks, while outside a North wind came along and blew away the competition.
Remember nannies sailing through the air, skirts billowing, feet in the air, umbrellas turned inside out?
As I watch the river, I see a little duck, tiny in that immense flow, paddling upstream. At first, I thought he/she (I can’t tell which), was staying in the same spot as the current flowed steadily past her little body. Now, that’s a strong current and a big river while that duck is but a teeny little-feathered creature with only her internal insulation to protect her against the bracing cold. Soon she away from my view. I don’t know how she is managing, but clearly, something she or he, wants is upstream, and that little duck is determined to get there.
While I don’t want to be foolhardy in staying here instead of going home before bad weather breaks, as is predicted, this is too good to pass up.
I am working feverishly on my course, Come on Baby Light My Fire, reading and having a blast, drinking coffee, and processing whatever debris I have blocking my road to success. I was so excited about one of the processes, I expected to see that red truck I pretended to ask for sitting in our driveway when I get home. (It was only an example).
If you hear that I was lost in a snow back, know that I went out happy.
Blogs are for dreamers, travelers, Mom’s, Dad’s Grandma’s (I’m one.) and anyone with fingers to push the keys. (Whoops I know a paraplegic who speaks his blog.) So there you have it, it’s for anyone who wishes to express themselves.
And for us, the reader, to find those blogs that add value to our lives.
Don’t you hate it when someone tells you they have achieved the very thing you have spent hours, days, years working for, and they did it with both arms tied behind their backs?
Like, that’s supposed to inspire us?
Or, of course, we can choose not to believe them.
Trust your instincts.
And for you artists, adventurers, explorers, wonderful people out there, remember the process is the thing. Yeah, yeah, I know, you want to make money—actually you have to make money or you’ll starve, but regarding your art, think of it this way. The end result, the artifact, is the icing on the cake. Didn’t your juices flow when you were traipsing down the path toward your goal?
Gosh, I loved Serena Williams’ exuberance when she won the Wimbledon. That girl knows how to celebrate! When you win, take it from Serena.
Tomorrow I’m driving from Eugene Oregon to Hood River Oregon. I’ll be staying at a motel there, and on their site is an ad that for $65.00 you can get a morning tour of the Columbia River Gorge and Multnomah Falls. Multnomah Falls is one of my favorite places. On my way to Hood River, I will drive right past it.
But, if you start at Hood River, you don’t need to spend 65 bucks, for if you drive West toward Portland, you’ll be driving through the Gorge, and right beside the freeway will be Multnomia Falls. No tour needed. And even if you rent a car, you could do it for less than $65.00. When you get to the Falls, get out of your car and walk up and across the bridge that spans the falls.
First, my morning moral dilemma:
I looked out my kitchen window to see a little pillow-like blond thing in the flower bed. When I saw it throw dirt on its back I realized it was my free-range chicken Chick-a-dee, having a dirt bath and sunning herself in the morning sun.
Well, maybe this dilemma isn’t a moral one, but it’s concerning to me. I want Chick-a-dee to be happy. She likes her freedom. She lives roosting on the back porch.
I’m tired of cleaning the porch, and with spring coming on I would like it to look good.
Who do I please?
She likes to be close to us, and if we don’t watch carefully she will follow the dog inside. She will wiggling her little fuzzy butt, run after me when I go out to feed the three penned chickens behind the Wayback house. When I call her she will come.
I bought wire to make a run between the old chicken yard to the new kenneled yard with its off-the-ground hutch. My plan is to put her in the old house, and with the run between the two, let the chickens decide what is best for them. The not-so-tame chickens are afraid of Chick-a-dee and will cower in their house when she is in the yard.
Will they work it out? I don’t know. Chickens like chickens and Chick-a-dee had a sister she was close with, but when her sister came up missing, Chick-a-dee adopted us. But I will miss Chick-a-dee at the house and telling her, “Good night Chick-a-dee.”
Okay, I left my window, got my coffee, and sat down at the computer to begin my day, and…
Wow, this blew me away:
“We should do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because according to Malthusian Darwinian theory he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.”
― Buckminster Fuller
I heard Buckminster Fuller speak in San Diego California, and my mouth dropped when he said he made $300,000 a year and spent every penny of it. He would make another 300,000 the following year.
How cool is that!
That was 30 years ago.
I have been taking a course begun in Portland Oregon, called The Right to Exist. Now it has moved to another location and to new writers named Dominika and Cedric. Their course is The Trailblazer.
When I first began following the Right to Exist site, I thought about how people work like slaves, often hate their jobs, go home tired, grumbling, watch television and fall into bed, only to repeat the same procedure the next day.
And working mothers get their three-year-old child up at 7:30 to take her to day-care, drop the son off at school, work for 8 hours, pick up the children—go home to whatever happens in the evening, and then begin it all over again. The little girl spends 40 hours a week in day-care.
And our social system, in giving any financial assistance, keeps the precipitant at the poverty level, for we have the belief that if a person doesn’t work, they are lazy, and we don’t want to support that. One must justify their right to exist.
“Overcoming poverty is not a task of charity, it is an act of justice. Like Slavery and Apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings. Sometimes it falls on a generation to be great. YOU can be that great generation. Let your greatness blossom.”
On the other end of the socioeconomic spectrum are individuals who rush to “jobs” they love so much they say, they would do them even without pay. These individuals often make an enormous amount of money, buy jets and such, send cars into space, and are the envy of others sitting at home watching TV.
Of course, those glorious ones got off their butts and worked for the thing they loved. As a result, some received high financial rewards. However, some have a problem. In their effort to reach the top, they forgot that inner work is required to become a whole human being. They became despondent, couldn’t handle the pressure, their relationships fell into the toilet, they used drugs to calm the savage beast and ended up killing themselves.
It’s such a dilemma.
And crap, this will break your heart:
"If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America. They don't care for human beings.” –Nelson Mandela
Okay, now I am putting myself out on a limb. I am in the process of writing a course—for me? Yeah, and for anyone else who chooses to sign up.
While working my way through the Trailblazer processes I hit a spot where I questioned what I wanted to do, where my strengths lie and found, that while I thought I knew what I wanted—to write, to blog and to write books. Another possibility came pecking at me.
I wanted to write my own course, not to copy others who have gone before me, but my own—to work through it with my participants, for, you know there is more than the external trappings of life.
There is also the inner work of how we relate to other human beings and to ourselves. Few of us have escaped life unscathed, and most people feel they aren’t good enough.
If one’s psychology is 80% of the battle in living the life we choose, then the place to begin is with clearing the path to our greatness.
I have taken more seminars, workshops, courses, and training programs than you can shake a stick at. (Words of my mother. Although I still don’t know what that means.) It is time to stop soaking up information and to pour some out.
Like spaghetti thrown to the ceiling, I will throw out my information to see if it sticks.
Share what you know. We need to hear it.
Thank you for being here. You are awesome!
So, how was your week?
From the brilliance of Shel Silverstein, Where the Sidewalk Ends