Every day in our life's journey holds its own special treasures, if we have eyes to see...

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Through a Cat's Eyes

In preparing for our recent cross-country move, I wanted to bring bits and pieces of our everyday life to the new house in order to create an instant sense of home. Little things like favorite coffee mugs, certain pieces of furniture, musical instruments, books. But as it turns out, one furry individual more than all else combined, has given pleasure and continuity in a place where everything else is new. So this post celebrates Miss Moppet, aka "Toots".

Relocating halfway across the United Sates seemed rather extreme. Extreme and decidedly disruptive, from a cat's eye view. Sulking seemed to be the obvious way to deal with such an event--lots of sulking combined with lurking about in the far regions of the moving vehicle, punctuated by sulking and lurking in strange hotel rooms and hiding in the box springs of hotel mattresses.

There is something about her tail-waving, silent-pawed presence that lends a timelessness to the place in which she dwells, be it Missouri or California. Her wide-eyed acceptance of  change has helped blur the edges of our relocation, lending a sort of haven't-we-always-been-here quality to every day. With a cat's usual disregard for boundaries and time, she prowls about in exploration, spends inordinate amounts of time in what could be called catnapping (if it didn't represent solid hours of oblivion) sprawled upon whatever ledge, bed, or if at all possible, forbidden surface she favors. Nocturnal habits and an addiction to cheese aside, she is a pleasure and a joy in our world. Indispensible.

A new house is a place of wonder. There are ladders to climb. Vines to ravage and spread in little bits over the carpet. Plants, of course, make very good hiding places, and if they, too, loose a few leaves or begin looking a bit bedraggled, who can blame such a face?

Should all those other activities begin to lose their appeal, a cat can always read or journal, activities at which Toots show great skill, as you can clearly see...

Now where was I? Ah, yes. Journal-
ing by osmosis. A rare skill. I stare off into space as I ponder the uni-
verse. Perhaps it trans-
fers to the pages upon which I lie. 
Or not.
Either way, I am fine. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

River Birch Bend

Setting forth
Over five years ago, my youngest daughter and I saddled up Journey and Ginger (our Welsh pony who was only 30-years-old at the time and still able to be ridden) and wove our way through field and stream, deep into the Corps land that lies behind our house in west-central Missouri. By some miracle, we actually found an enchanted place we christened "River Birch Bend". Next time, we agreed, we must pack a lunch, come sit upon the creek bank, and soak in the solitude and beauty.

But somehow we never quite did that, and then Ginny got too old to ride, (and no person with half a wit would ever venture into the Missouri woods in summer on foot unless they had a love affair with chiggers or had marinated themselves in bug spray). Therefore it was only this summer that we set out on horseback  to re-discover River Birch Bend.

Was it three fields over and then across the creek and down, or was it two fields, then forge into the woods? No, and no. But after three attempts, dense and poison ivy laced undergrowth and a few impressive wounds, we found it once again.This time, we  marked it so that whether we struck the trail head at top or bottom, we would not end up beating our way cross-country and wishing ourselves back home.

Why am I relating this? Because four weeks ago, I took my last ride on Journey for what may be a very long time. Down through the creek bottoms, dappled by dancing shadows of leaves and streaks of sunlight, this special horse and I wended our way to to River Birch Bend. It seemed fitting that I would say goodbye to Missouri this way before she went to start the next chapter in her life journey and I in mine...

Wow. I started this blog entry just as we left for our new home in northern California, whereafter, it languished unfinished while whatever brilliant or un-brilliant thing I was going to say disappeared beneath a slew of unpacking, article deadlines, and getting acquainted with a whole new chapter.

So, I think, rather than trying to figure out whatever it was I was going to say, I will just share this video of our last ride, (can't figure out why I can't change it from sideways to right-side-up, but oh well...)

and say that I'm loving this new adventure, challenges and all, while Journey has settled into her new home with the beauty and grace with which she always approaches life.

Abigail on Journey--2012