Right Here Right Now

Donna teaches me about beach ecology while in the background Mak teaches anyone who cares to sniff that, “I was right here, right now.”  August, 2013.IMG_0932

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The Battle Rejoined

I’ve logged a week and a half of consistent training only taking anti-inflammatories a few times.  With each passing workout the dull ache increases and begins to affect a greater range of motion.  But while training the feeling is indescribable and one that, until five years ago, was my daily life for three and half decades.  People who would see me “in the zone” would say “Man!  You come alive!”

It’s difficult to succinctly describe the feeling and one really need experience it to understand but once in a while I come across a passage in literature that does it justice.  After you’ve read the quote you’ll see why training was always easy.  Motivation never an issue, just let ‘er rip!  Who wouldn’t want to feel that all the time?  Not much about fitness and all about battle…

Here is a paraphrase of the round house scene in Robert Louis Stevenson’s, Kidnapped:

But there was Alan, standing as before; only now his sword was running blood to the hilt, and himself so swelled with triumph and fallen into so fine an attitude, that he looked to be invincible. Right before him on the floor was Mr. Shuan, on his hands and knees; the blood was pouring from his mouth, and he was sinking slowly lower, with a terrible, white face; and just as I looked, some of those from behind caught hold of him by the heels and dragged him bodily out of the round-house. I believe he died as they were doing it.

“There’s one of your Whigs for ye!” cried Alan; and then turning to me, he asked if I had done much execution…

O, man,” he cried in a kind of ecstasy, “am I no’ a bonny fighter?”

Thereupon he turned to the four [dead] enemies, passed his sword clean through each of them, and tumbled them out of doors one after the other. As he did so, he kept humming and singing and whistling to himself…  All the while, the flush was in his face, and his eyes were as bright as a five-year-old child’s with a new toy.

Howard Pyle's rendition of the roundhouse fight.

Howard Pyle’s rendition of the roundhouse fight.

Training “boost juice” with a fab guitar sound reminiscent of Goitzsche Front.  The song is about not being affiliated with any political party neither right not left, about the freedom the political center imparts.  (Quite ironic given Breck’s political views in Kidnapped!)

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Right With Ya, Jamie!

big wounded lionAspiring to physical supremacy has been a driving force since I can remember.  My earliest clear memory of the drive was in nursery school.  Yes, I take pleasure in diverse things, but the exhilaration and accomplishment that comes from physical prowess is the core of who I am.  Letting go identity when elderly is one thing, at  mid-life, it’s quite another.

I’ve had unpleasant “news” regarding the arthritis situation and had to rally defenses, not let depression sink malevolent hooks.  It was minor skirmish in a war I’ll fight for the rest of life.

The next morning I was amazed by the timely, appropriate quote I encountered in A Feast for Crows, the fourth Game of Thrones.


“Brienne remembered her fight with Jaime Lannister in the woods.  It had been all that she could do to keep his blade at bay.”  [Brienne is bigger and stronger than men.]  “He was weak from his imprisonment, and chained at the wrists.  No knight in the Seven Kingdoms could have stood against him at his full strength, with no chains to hamper him.  Jaime had done many wicked things, but the man could fight!  His maiming had been monstrously cruel.  It was one thing to slay a lion, another to hack his paw off and leave him broken and bewildered.”  -from, A Feast for Crows, by George R.R. Martin

I was never as capable as Jamie, of course, but with severe arthritis, broken, bewildered… still fighting.

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Used to be I was in canoes quite a bit.  I’ve done long solo trips through lower 48 “wilderness.”  These days my shoulder prevents any significant paddling (battling headwinds on a 17 mile lake) but it occurred to me if I’m to canoe at all in the future – better sooner than later.  Here are a couple shots harking back to ’01 taking my boys for a watery spin.

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Morning Light

Colored glass and broken seashells in morning light.IMG_3711crop

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Bubble Glass

As the clock ticks and the day’s fatigue creeps up nothing is more welcome than a quite place to dream away the afternoon.IMG_0635

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Like Us

Pal and Pooka wait for the weekend!HPIM3411

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Hot Hike Cool Drink

The heat gives Mak a pit bull grin during our weekend hike.IMG_3730Then he eager slakes his thirst at the head of the ravine.IMG_3734

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Sailing No More

The stern of a decaying vessel, it’s sailing days over, pokes high above grass and driftwood.DSCN2312a

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No Noise!

The other day, I was whining to Lori about noise from the neighbors.  I live in a suburban place that looks far more rural than it is.  I hate hearing people’s radio!  Loud talk, motors, traffic and, heaven forbid, sirens are all symptoms of living much too close together.  An infrequent freight train horn is the only welcome man-made sound.  I don’t know why but trains have a far-off magic.  Oh yeah, the occasional propeller plane inspires the same far-off feeling and is appreciated as well.

When I’m in the yard, I’d like to hear nothing but wind, and perhaps a coyote or owl. Animals not humans.  Far better to live steeped in nature like this:DSCN2192

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