Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Breathe In, Breathe Out, Move On

My Gi-normous Birthday party has come and gone. I think we had almost 30 people but no major embarrassing stories to tell. No mice or squirrels invited themselves. Word must have gotten out about our tiny little mothball odor problem because a lot of people gave me scented candles for my birthday. The girls got me a flamingo cake with “60” on the side. Or maybe it was “GO”. Not sure. But Sarah and Essie were excited for me.

We’re slowly bringing the Emergency Dump Boxes back into the house. Beaven and I have developed a routine that works really well for us: when we expect company we gather up all the books and magazines that paper the floor around our chairs and throw them into a box that we then hide in the storage building out of sight. It’s the fastest way to clean the living room and also the easiest way to bring the room back to normal afterward. This party required about 6 Emergency Dump Boxes. We really need to go through the boxes and throw some stuff away, I guess. I set out one of the boxes as “party favors” to give guests their choice of radical leftist magazines, books or movies. And a couple of people were excited to take some of the stuff home with them.

The best part of the whole day was the campfire sitting at the end. I think I’d rather do that than anything in the world. Especially with good friends. And I’ve managed to keep the fire going since Saturday just by adding a few logs during the day

One of my gifts this year was from a guy who didn’t even know it was my birthday and it certainly wasn’t his intention to make it a present—but that’s what it’s ended up as. It's a new Jimmy Buffet song. Don Oswald, one of the guys I met at the PDA camp in Mississippi told me about it. And now I can’t even remember why he did unless it was because the song is nominally about Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. But it’s as much about living a relaxed life and staying in the moment: I heard this philosophy a year ago from my dear friend Nancy Gray. In the middle of a busy evening I asked her what time it was and she answered, in her best Buddhist-Presbyterian way, “Now.”

I bought a cheap watch from the crazy man
Floating down Canal
It doesn’t use numbers or moving hands
It always just says "now"

Now you may be thinking that I was had
But this watch is never wrong
And if I had trouble the warranty said:
Breathe in, breathe out, move on


I think that will be my theme music for the next 40 years. Certainly it will come in handy when we go to Europe next week. Not only will we cross a half dozen time zones and throw our body clock out of whack, we do it the day before daylight savings time ends back here at home. THEN, the second week of our trip, Europe changes their own time. Whenever I try to figure it out my head starts spinning like the little girl in "The Exorcist" and I give up in despair. I'm just going to have to wing it and forget about keeping track of time.

In fact, Don Oswald later sent me the link to a website that sells watches that really do just say ‘now.’ I bought one. Hope it comes in time for the trip.

We leave on Saturday and I’ll be out of touch for a couple of weeks. If I find a way to stoke my internet addiction you might hear from me. Otherwise, I’ll be back in a couple of weeks. Surely, I'll have things to say. In the meantime, breathe in, breathe out, move on.

2 comments:

jason_g said...

Happy Birthday! Enjoy Europe.

Rachael said...

I just read a post from June 2006 about Alligator Pond at Camp Bette Perot (it came up on a google search regarding said camp...) That was hilarious. I'll have to send my daughter with some alligator repellent and a good pair of running shoes.