December 2010

December is red, white and evergreen. Winter still new and welcoming.

So far the weather here has been what some say is typical of the Ozarks. However, the end of the month proved otherwise when 8 twisters set foot in Missouri on the 31st and took a few people away who thought they were going to a New Years party that night.

Yet life is nothing but sudden changes of plans and there is nothing certain but change. I had a hard time with change in my younger years, which led to my many bouts with melancholy. I would have thought now that I’m older I would have an even harder time with melancholy. I have more things to reflect on and many more goodbyes in the wake of my boat. But I’m learning to be a little more at ease with letting go because there just isn’t a whole lot of room for the past to be taking up residence in the present. The future remains a mystery and most of us write more fiction about it than we’re even aware of. I’ve gotten better at that too, fiction is not my genre and I spend less time worrying about what might or might not be. Not that I don’t put any thoughts about what’s to come, I just use a pencil now instead of ink.

The eleven widows are still putting out 6 to 9 eggs a day. They squawk at being confined to a much smaller pen and don’t understand how it protects them from danger. But I’m not about to let them learn on their own because they wouldn’t get it until they were firmly in the jaws of a coyote being hauled off to a den somewhere in the woods. And those left behind that watched the grizzly scene wouldn’t see there was a lesson to be learned anyway. All in all the widows are doing fine. They squawk and get upset when I’m not out there feeding them on time and there’s one hen that comes in the hen house every time I’m gathering eggs and accuses me of thievery and makes a big fuss. But even when her rooster was alive, there wasn’t anything any of them could do about it, I kidnap there young and eat them.

You get so comfortable living out here with so much privacy that indoor plumbing is something that is used only in the middle of the night like a chamber pot or in the morning when a guy needs a quiet place to sit and read. The rest of the time it’s where ever you are and whenever you want. I prefer my back deck where the view is breathtaking and inspirational but once in a while I’ll step out the front door too. The other morning I stepped out on my front porch all blurry eyed from just waking up and when I was finished and my eyes started to focus and I noticed a neighbor walking by on the road out front. But being a Midwesterner I can trust that she politely turned her head away and forgave me right then and there even though she knew in her heart I was a disgusting person. Then again it’s winter, she probably couldn’t see anything anyway.

In the summer a neighbor up the road often jumps out of bed buck-naked and into his rubber mud boots to run out and feed his horse. Because of the way the gravel road curves right before his house, he can’t always hear a car coming until it’s too late. He’s been caught a few times in a full Monty run by his sweet elderly neighbors on their way to church. They never have said anything to him about it but that’s how polite people can be here.

Because of the kindness of people here you really don’t notice much change in folks around Christmas time than any other time. In California they go from road rage and indifference to opening the door for you and actually saying hello. They do wish the Christmas spirit would stay all year but I believe it takes more than wishes. The New Year is fast approaching and things don’t look a whole lot better than the last. Changing the world begins in our own hearts, the problems we face are more than just about money. The harder it gets in the world, the more compassion we need to have. The survival of our humanity demands it. It is the only weapon we hold.

I’m not one for making New Years resolutions and beginning the first week of the year in failure. But I am thinking of changing a few things this coming year like writing more and spending more time nurturing the passion to do so. Writing is my lifeline and without it, I would easily slip off the radar into hermit-hood and never be heard from again. So I hope I do well with that and I hope whatever you decide to make better in your life, you will succeed also.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

May God Bless us all.

Stay warm

Published in: on January 7, 2011 at 11:04 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Great picture, Gregg, and good thoughts about living in the moment. Makes sense, doesn’t it, since it’s all we have? And thanks for the heads up–I’ll keep my eyes straight ahead and on the road next time I travel down Jerry Corp lane.

  2. Another gem….thank-you!

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