Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Where We End Up

I was thinking about our topic today, on my day off. Carpe Diem is one of those phrases it would all do us well to hang in front of our computers and put near our beds, because we forget it so often. Or at least I do.

I think of myself as an accidental Buddhist. Accepting the now is one of the most important things to me, and therefore, it's the thing I have the most difficult time remembering. I'm constantly living in the future: when I sell another series of books, when we have a little more money, when I manage to get more sleep. I put off things that are important (walks with friends, meals made from scratch, letters written by hand) for those things that are easy and expedient (email, microwaved dinners, sleeping pills).

So today, with our topic in mind, I:

* Cleaned out my office. I couldn't stand the way it was cluttered for one more day. The way my office looks is the way my mind feels, and the three hours it took to remove/trash/sort was rewarded INSTANTLY by the way my brain feels as I sit at my desk now. Calm. Relaxed. Unafraid.

* Packed up the dogs and met my sister in the cemetery for a long ramble. We talked about hard stuff, and good stuff, and writing stuff, and then we just peeked into the crypts to see what we could spy (playing cards! a banana peel! nothing of interest in the Ghiradelli crypt, and there SHOULD be!). There's nothing like a jaunt through a gorgeous cemetery to remind you that now is all we have.

* Threw a bunch of things in a pot for a dinner of chipotle black bean soup. The immediacy of chopping things is something I love. I'm not at all good at it, and I frequently chop my fingers as well as the onion, but making good food is one of my favorite things to do. I want to remember to do it more often.

Tonight, I will: Spin some orange merino/silk on my spinning wheel. I will watch some TV because I haven't in a few weeks, and I love relaxing in front of it when I can. I will kiss my wife and tell her I love her. I will laugh at the dogs' ridiculous antics. I will cuddle a cat or two. I'll rejoice when I lie down flat in my bed, and I'll sleep with the window open because the jasmine is blooming. It's worth the stuffy nose in the morning to be able to wake at 3am to that dark, sweet scent.

PS - If I do end up kicking it early, scatter my ashes like this: at the top of Mountain View Cemetery (don't pay for it! just walk and scatter -- I won't tell) in Oakland, with a wee bit kept out to put in the SF Columbarium and a wee bit for Venice, too. Oh, lovely. Isn't it? I've never really known where I wanted to end up (really, who cares?) but I like this plan very much.

5 comments:

Gigi Pandian said...

Oh, I don't take nearly enough time to go on walks when I'm not on vacation! I should do that more. But one thing that I've been doing for the past year and a half, which I LOVE, is cooking dinner from scratch several nights a week. It takes time (usually over an hour) but it's time we can spend together hanging out. We canceled cable (kept Neflix), so it's time well spent :)

Juliet Blackwell said...

Yes yes yes. I almost *never* regret the time I spend with friends, and meals cooked from scratch (especially side-by-side with friends) are what life is all about: celebrating love and abundance.
LOVED seeing you today, it's always too brief ;-)

Mysti said...

Wait--you don't have to be good at it to cook? Hey, you just opened a door for me. Thank you!!!

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