Thursday, October 13, 2011

Someone said you can't go back home.

I went back, but home isn't what it was. I have only been here a couple of days, and I am doing alright, but home isn't the same.

When the house was new it was full of teen aged daughters and their friends, then one by one daughters moved out and on with their lives. Then we moved out to go to the University in Boise and then to a couple of other Universities in Texas.

If that wasn't enough we ended up back in Washington state, in the same town we lived in years before, and live now. But finally we were drawn back to our Idaho home.

Still everything is the same and nothing is the same.

This time I am here alone. I don't mind being alone, in fact I relish alone time, but as I sit here in my recliner (we did not move it!) I remember all of the voices and people who have been in this room. I remember a vibrant Miriam, and that is the point where I stop thinking about it all.

I was born half a mile from where I now sit. I was married, went to grade school, high school a half mile the other direction. It is home, but it isn't the same.

Old guys live their lives in memory, and I guess I am old.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Old machinery as sculpture.

head swim

Living in the RV is comfortable, for the most part.

The bed is queen sized, but on the sides there is only a little space between the bed and the walls, so we climb over the end.

I do that easily, but Miriam has problems with it.

Getting out is OK, she is slow, but she gets it done. She goes in the bathroom (I, of course am awake during all of this) goes, flushes, turns the light on and off and then comes back to bed. The long nightgowns that worked so well for so many years are not easy to climb in, so she gets into bed and then wiggles for several minutes getting everything adjusted. By now I am wide awake. (New night wear is on the way).

She goes back to sleep without a hitch and I am wide awake staring at the ceiling. When I get up, I get back to sleep by not letting my mind take the first spin.

She is nicely asleep, but I am wide awake. My head swimming with too much already. I get up, dress enough to keep warm. I check the email. Daughter 2 send a picture, but she is the only one in the family who uses Windows and I fiddle with opening the file, which opens Picasso which is supposed to be a perfect way to hold all pictures, but is a pain so far.

I'll take a nap later, maybe.

going again

Today I am going back to Idaho for a week or so.

As much as she would like to go I’ll not take Miriam. It would be best for her here with daughter. I have a good deal of work to get done, and alone it goes better. Truthfully I am adjusting to life more and more alone.

Here in the bus I spend a great deal of time sitting and doing what my step father would call “wasting time.” I play computer games, I read, I write, I think, and I take walks, but I don’t do too much real work.

Yesterday I planted Garlic and I tilled up a new garden plot. In Idaho there is no shortage of things to do.

Right now I am planning on spending about a week a month in Idaho at our “lake house.”

I don’t have internet at the house now. I will need to find a WiFi hot spot, so I may not post too much during this time.

One thing I noticed right away is that it is easy to not eat terribly well when there is just one, so I’ll have to work on that one.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Johnny Lingo

Johnny was the most desired bachelor for miles around.

He was the subject of a short movie produced by the predominant church in the west a few decades ago. The setting was a semi primitive village somewhere, maybe in the south pacific. The custom was that a man who wanted to marry would negotiate a dowry with the father. The dowry was in cows. A real good wife might bring 3 or 4 cows and occasionally a particularly desirable young woman went for more.

In time Johnny let it be known that he was seeking a wife and that he had made a decision. He came to the village for the purpose of letting his wishes be known. All the girls were a atwitter.

He sat down with one of the fathers and said the girl he wanted for his wife was Mahana. Now Mahana had always been told how ugly she was and what an embarrassment she was and how useless she was. When strangers visited the village she would hide.

Privately Mahana’s father had said that he would give a cow to get rid of her, but when the negotiations began, on a while whim, he asked for three cows. Johnny said NO. Father dropped his number and the answer was the same. Finally Johnny said he would give TEN cows for Mahana.

No woman had ever, ever been so valuable.

They married and went away to live in Johnny’s village. No one saw there for quite a while. In time a rumor arrived about the incredibly beauty that was Johnny’s wife and the village was stunned. They sent someone to investigate, and the rumor was true, Mahana was stunning.

When asked what had happened, Johnny explained that when a woman knew that she was very valuable, very highly esteemed, very much loved, she would (and did) respond and her true beauty would be seen.

The basic idea of the movie is true, the plot was a bit awful, and we are not pleased with the idea of buying women, but there still was a bit of truth to it.

Still, how we treat people is important. Treat someone with great respect and they will rise to that level. Always? I don’t know. But I have seen it happen.

Miriam’s dad always told her and anyone around that she was like him: “Kinda dumb in books.” She believed him of course, yet after he died she graduated from college, the only one of her family. She was not dumb.

It does make a difference.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Years ago in Texas I saw a show of Lewis Morris's paintings.
They were huge 10 or 12 feet high and yards and yards long.
Raw simple colors. Pored over the canvas and allowed to run and blend.
I was mesmerized. When I told my professor about seeing the show and my delight, he thought a minute and said: "Of course you would like him!"
Sometimes my minimalism is more in my head than in my life. I guess that is how it works sometimes.