The Hawk and the Squawk

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It was a beautifully complex and garbled call – primal and delirious – understated and purposeful – coyote mixed with cardinal —-  a sound my ears had not seen — I was intrigued.

I looked up and saw this red-tailed hawk, high on a pole – talking at me —- I was running in his territory – He was letting me know – not making too much noise —- waiting for breakfast – breakfast that could easily be scared away.

I’ve been running and training —- [Sorry to all non-runners — spent most of my life not running, I know how it sounds!]

It was magical – a quiet road next to a farm at mile 4 of a 7 mile run and this hawk is talking to me. That is all I need on a Sunday morning. I am not nothing – I am not failed – I am not broken — I am here and now and part of this land — it is part of me —– all together—- all connected.

Yeah, running can be like that.

 

Now on to mile 6:

I’m running on the shoulder against traffic and this old dude (my age) is riding a bicycle and coming at me — I move over into the field to give him room. He is yelling obscenities at me; “What the f*#k are you doing running on the road, get a bike, you f*&king idiot!” I barely look at him and focus on one breath at a time, one step at a time. It occurred to me that this was his garbled squawk – I am invading his territory – he is trying to give me some life advice. I can’t argue that riding a bike is more efficient. And I felt bad for him, because the bike is his mode of travel— he is not on a road of self-discovery – The dude must get from point A to point B. It was bizarre to have two confrontations with the local beasts on the same run.

 

The sublime and the ridiculous.

 

Both justified in their own strange way.

 

This is where I live, this is who I am.

 

Fast forward to Saturday October 14 in Hartford Connecticut – My first half marathon. The first 6 miles were fine, the last 10 feet when I crossed the finish line was also good. The remainder was varying degrees of painful.

The first one is like that.

I will keep running – it’s a new normal. It makes me feel better – it makes me be better.

 

 

Notes:

Forgive me bloggers, it’s been many months since my last confession. Starting a life back up that got derailed is a difficult process. We are fully engaged in that process at the moment.

 

 

 

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Solstice

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Summer Solstice

As I lay down the night before – I say to myself  “I’m not getting up at 4am to chase the sunrise, I kinda want to sleep”

I woke at 4am – and I knew that I would get after it – it’s the solstice – I love the solstice

Mankind has loved this day since they figured out what it was – the steady reliable cycle of the sun bringing stability to an unstable world— countless generations paying homage to the spinning of the earth – countless people making what they will of it.

Gods are formed around the mystery of the passage of time. The journey of our birth to our death that spins and moves in a universe of wonder.

I love the solstice. It connects me to bigger things.

I visited my grandmother in England many, many moons ago. I wanted to go to Stonehenge and we went on the solstice – I did not know what that meant – I did not know it was a “thing”.

Since then its stayed with – watching me – checking in on me as I stumble through life.

I remember my grandmother as I drive to chase the light – it’s a big thing to understand that the world will spin – things will flow – and we will go – we can join in the cosmic dance or we can wait it out —- either way the solstice will cycle on and on.

Notes: Lake George NY is close enough to be local for me – There was a woman walking her dog on the beach and nothing else going on in town at sunrise. I didn’t have to edit this photo except for a splash of highlight on the buoy – a quick shake of light – nothing else.  If you wonder how I am — I say — mostly I am ok – I’m not the same- I try to make the most of the days instead of the least of the days —- that is a better way to live.

 

Open Mic

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Signups were at 7, I strolled in at 7 after and was 7 on the list. My name in pencil as a testament to this little car-wash of fear for my soul.

I sat down in a chair next to a person I knew from a past life – he was already drunk  – I used to be his boss – he reminded me that I was his best boss and I was a good guy ~ life takes strange twists and turns. (drunk may be his normal state- he did not look well)

A snarky old guy with a leather hat approached and grabbed his coffee from the table next to me – Oh no, I sat in his seat! I apologized; he snarked back “I’m standing right here!”

This is a great start – my alcoholic ex-coworker drunk off his ass and I’ve pissed off one of the regulars here in this little theater –  Somehow all this is good with me – I mean; the water you swim is the water you swim – but you swim anyway.

We are told that instead of the three songs, we will only do two, due to the large amount of sign-ups— Maybe 11 total? And then go around a second time for one more.

I’ve moved to a new spot in this little theater – away from all the strife at the entrance – I meet another new guy  – he is a drummer, seems to be a good guy.

Let the show begin –

And it did.

By the time it got to me – I was ok with going up on stage for the first time – I had trouble getting my guitar to work  – but the host was very gracious in helping —–

I sang and played “Mississippi Kid” by Lynyrd Skynyrd – My version bears little resemblance to the original – I go straight 12 bar blues on my acoustic guitar – I love the song and the snarling attitude of it – My version is closer to that of Jerry Lee Lewis (but I humbly submit that my performance is just a wisp of smoke compared to the fire of the original “killer”).

I told the audience that it was my first time and I was only good for one tune –

And I did it!

By the time I got to the last verse, I was dancing a bit and enjoying myself.

It won’t be my last

I will be going back.

For a few moments that night – I was the “Mississippi kid”!

 

Notes: I bought a new acoustic guitar last March for my birthday and I play it every day –  (maybe I’ve missed a total of a week if you add all the days I couldn’t play in the last 10 months)

On February 1st (exactly 14 months to the day I lost my wife, for those of you that know me) I stepped on a stage and did an open mic.

It went well – I am not ruining this post with actual video; but that is probably coming!

I did mess with guitar in my earlier life, never anything past the tinkering stage and never complete songs.

And I never tried to sing before.

But, so what?

Life is to live.

Go live.

Question: What would be your song if and when you do (did?) this?

 

 

Where do I stRT?

bighorn22Since you left me or, more accurately: I left you  – Wow – and whoa and wheew – yeaoh = I am here and I am alright.

I feel like I need to just let everyone know that my basicness is okness  – (yeah, I know I am making up words that don’t exist).

How are you? And, I am ok ~ doesn’t come close to the gamut of reflection and metamorphosis of the last few months.

Some new habits:

I meditate everyday – I go to the gym three times a week – I run; 5 Ks now, looking at a half marathon sometime next year. I am stronger mentally and physically. I am a success story in many ways.

With that is also the intense pain that continues to flow at times – maybe not with the complete flooding of the beginning – but all the power is intact.

The difference between sitting next to a rushing river and being in a rushing river.

The river is the same —– you have a different perspective.

You know it is only a couple steps away – — you know you will always hear it and feel it —– but somehow – you are ok.

Am I coming back to WP? I think so – but I can’t say for sure right now.

Still putting myself back together – Come a long way and far to go.

I leave you with a photo of a bighorn sheep I took in July from the Badlands — that is one of the wows! – the Badlands and me — we understand each other.

Hope to write again soon.

Wayne (caveguy)

Journey

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Do not judge my journey

If you want to try:

Please put my shoes on and walk—-not forward~ No — Too easy –

Walk back – walk through all the years – walk through all the pain – walk until there are no shoes on a tender little baby foot – then you can judge me — If you still want to.

I refuse to do that anymore, to me or to anyone else – we can only go forward — and I only know what you dare to tell me of your own journey — and that is still just a drop in the ocean of your existence…

I won’t judge you – that is a promise, that is my philosophy – that is my mantra

– if we meet on the same trail; I will try and help you – or at the very least, not make your way more difficult.

We each make our way– we are each walking the best we know how.

Until we learn to walk better –

We can always learn to walk better.

Notes: This is on one of the trails in Acadia National Park – so many wonderful steps in the high ground by the ocean. The landscape is majestic >>>>>>> it restored my soul.

 

It keeps me running

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A couple weeks ago I did my first 5K! I ran with the kids and it took me almost 34 minutes – but I did it! I’m posting this picture so you can see how I am and what I look like in June of 2016 ~ I have come a long way in the last 7 months – I thank all of you – I don’t want to name names and embarrass anybody but there were some who went above and beyond to reach out to me – this community is so warm and so welcoming. Really, I have no words to describe it.

Beyond that: I meditate everyday – I play guitar and sing (have to play by a fire this week!) – I have ink! – I am heading out to the badlands in a week or so for another trip – I am in therapy (my therapist is a godsend) —– And all this stuff is new — I am becoming something else – I cannot return to where I was.

I am blessed and I am grateful ~ And I run now not to escape myself

I run to become myself

 

Mini Me

Don’t worry about me

The people I have met – the music I have played – the places I have been

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind

Below is a picture of my new car on a trip I took a few days ago up to Bar Harbor in Maine. Just me and my new mini motoring around – and it was something – it was what I needed.

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I wake each day with the desire to do the best with the time in front of me.

And I sleep each night downloading the wonder and allowing it to cycle through my dreams.

I really am blessed.

Is there still pain?

Yes – there will always be –

But that is not the default mode

The default mode is to live, to laugh and to love.

 

I have more traveling to do in the coming weeks and will return to more blogging at some point

Wish you all well my friends>