Wednesday, December 5, 2012


True dialogue:
Me: "Husband, will you get me 2 bay leaves?"
Husband proceeds outside to Bay Leaf Tree.
Youngest daughter: "Oh. I thought you just asked Dad to get you 2 babies!"
Me: "Yep. From the Baby Tree."

Something came to me when standing outside at 4:40am in North Carolina last week.  Actually more than one thing. First, the moon casts shadows. Second, fireflies are still up and about in 28 degrees in December. Third, that sound could very well be a bear. Fourth, you think you understand what you are seeing, but it strikes you as so far out of expected visions that you doubt the very fact that you are even awake.

Moon, Planet and Trees, Asheville, December 2012

Today when I started running, I once again felt like I was weighed down with lead. I was listening to a podcast and it was not raining. My Garmin was taunting me and I was both pissed off and content. Pissed off at how easy it was in the not so distant past to run a sub 7 minute mile while training. Content because I was, after all, running.

Somewhere around 0.85 miles I kicked it up a notch. Still not exactly flying but I came up behind a guy at least 15 years my minor and he was nonplussed by this old lady passing him. Just me, Ira Glass and a week's vacation under my proverbial belt. "Whoa. You're fast." said young guy. "Oh! You too." said I. See ya', sucker.

Perception is just that. He perceived me as fast but put my kid and her Cross Country team next to me and I would look kind of adorably middle aged. And have you ever seen a whole forest of trees cast moon shadows? With fireflies? In December?

While walking in the Congaree National Forest last week, leaves rained down in a percussive cacophony accented with what were either tree frogs or crickets or both and I just could not close my mouth for the very surprise of it all. Thankfully autumn in South Carolina does not produce large quantities of mosquitoes and other such things that may find my gaping mouth a fine place to seek shelter.

Six other things I perceived this week:
1) Good friends are NOT to be sneezed at. Especially those that have known you since age 5 or age 19 or have seen you cry when a patient dies or have driven with you through the night with a car-full of teenagers or who know that your Dad was very funny or who understand you are broken but seem to love you just the same.
2) Professional success is in the eyes of the beholder and might involve a lot of accolades, but a job is nice to have and mainly because it feeds you and your family.
3) Not everyone in North and South Carolina is a member of the Tea Party.
4) Shrimp and Grits. For real?
5) It is about time to get a Christmas tree.
6) It is time and time past to scale back at work. Also, I signed up for the San Francisco Marathon. Mary made me do it. See that part about "good friends" above.

My Dad told me on his death bed (no, really. true): "Make the world a better place than how you found it."

Still working on that one, but I would say it is a pretty nice place already.

Leaf Shower, Congaree, Dec 2012

1 comment:

  1. Hi Jennifer,
    I'm not getting your blog in my email inbox. Is there some way that I can have that set up again? I miss it.