Thunder and All


This image is untouched. It looks like a software ‘painting’ but it is a photo.

“Every person needs to take one day away.  A day in which one consciously separates the past from the future.  Jobs, family, employers, and friends can exist one day without any one of us, and if our egos permit us to confess, they could exist eternally in our absence.  Each person deserves a day away in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for.  Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us.”   ~  Maya Angelou, Won’t Take Nothing for my Journey Now

“After all, the best part of a holiday is perhaps not so much to be resting yourself, as to see all the other fellows busy working.”  ~  Kenneth Grahame, Wind in the Willows

“Of all the things a man may do, sleep probably contributes most to keeping him sane. It puts brackets about each day. If you do something foolish or painful today, you get irritated if somebody mentions it, today. If it happened yesterday, though, you can nod or chuckle, as the case may be. You’ve crossed through nothingness or dream to another island in Time.”  ~  Roger Zelazny, Isle of the Dead

There was no conscious memory of the first one, but the second roar of thunder rocked everything. I heard that one. And I woke up happy. I looked at the time on the iPad and thought I was late in waking up before work. It took me a minute to realize that it was nearly sunset, not sunrise. I love waking up like that, not knowing what time or day it is, or sometimes even not knowing where I am. Self-consciousness disengaged, if only for a while. I started chatting at the cat, which makes her visibly content. Good thing, that (Insert smiley face here). Yesterday was a good day for me. In the morning I had the uncommon idea to treat myself to breakfast out, so I drove down to the Taos Diner, which is actually in El Prado, but Taos is often described as a state of mind, so there ya have it, right? Breakfast at the diner is a Taos tradition for many. The place was friggin packed! At 10 AM. That is so often the case. I ordered my breakfast burrito, added a few words to the manuscript for my novel, then proceeded to watched the waitress at work, dancing between tables, with some 30-35 people in attendance. Breakfast there is a treat to experience and the food is excellent. Down home beauty, lovely eyes, young, slim, buff, but that’s not the point. Watching a good waitress at work is a treat for me, having spent a good part of my life in the food and beverage industry. Handling a crowd of purely animated diners is no small task, but I am certain the tips are worth the effort. Now . . . beans, hash browns, eggs, cheese, green chile sauce, and, of course, the tortilla wrapped around just right, served on a very hot pale white ceramic plate. Half-pound coffee mug. Just right. When I was finished and went to the counter to pay, I found myself standing next to a friend of many years, sitting on one of the stools at the counter. We fell easily into happy chit chat. The guy is a treat. He’s Swiss in origin, still has the accent. Good lookin’ guy. The conversation started out with current work status, then my retirement and his fast-approaching retirement, then drifted on to his favorite band when he was still in Europe in the late 60s; an American band made good over there; top notch, even played the Royal Albert Hall, holes and all. Turns out two members of that band now live here in Taos. Go figure. One works in a wine shop and the other in a hardware store. Small world. We both knew both of them. Small town. It was delightful for me to have the conversation, to treat myself so well, because I am somewhat of a recluse the past few years. Leaving there I went to the supermarket, then home. It was not even two hours later that I settled for a nap, which ended up lasting 4.5 hours, and it ended with a rumble of thunder, quite uncomfortably close to the house.

Oddly enough I woke this morning without the persistent visceral anxiety that usually colors my mornings darkly, almost every day. Yeh, I can see why this was, but that was not even in question until I even noticed the serenity a couple of hours later. I can feel it fading in as I write. The anxiety is like an old . . . no, not friend, a teacher. For two decades, since reading Elizabeth Wertzel’s Prozac Nation I have been searching for a purpose for the two mental disorders I endure. She gave me the idea of purpose. She too wanted to find purpose in the ordeal. As far as I know the only way to dig up purpose in the issue is to allow the conditions to be teachers. So, what did I learn yesterday? Go out to eat once in a while, knucklehead! Breakfast was nice, but lunch comes next. I hope for some sweet company at my table, not on the way out the door. And here’s a little riddle-esque thing for you: you know how they say “it’s all good”? Well, I can’t really say that at this point in my life. I can, to that aphorism, only reply “not yet”. Good is not good enough for me, I want better. Yesterday was a start. Okay, okay, a good start, thunder and all.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.



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