Saturday, December 14, 2013

Days of Grace

I'm in Moab right now.  It's been pretty cold here, snow on the ground, but I'm indoors house-sitting at my friend Anne's, taking care of 11 chickens, a kitten, and a school of goldfish, until I go to another house-sit at my friend Maggie's tomorrow to take care of a couple cats.

I've been back to Fruita, Colorado a couple times, mainly to see my parents.  I hadn't seen my parents since last Spring.  I don't like to be away from them for so long, wanting to spend as much time as I can with them, as they're both 86 years old.

At Passage Charter School

While visiting them in early November, a teacher, Claudia, and her students from the Passage Charter School in Montrose, Colorado contacted me, saying they were reading The Man Who Quit Money for a class assignment, and asked if I wanted to talk with their class.  So my dad took me there, and I have to say how honored I felt to to have him with me to also talk with her class and some other students and teachers there.  A very fine bunch of folks.  Some people and their sincerity make you feel very good, and that's how I felt being with the folks, both teachers and students, at Passage.
My Dad (Richard), Claudia Bishop, Me
Passage Charter School,
Montrose, Colorado

 Ana Valles, Maria Delacruz, Me, Claudia Bishop, and Isabel Ramirez
at Passage Charter School,
Montrose, Colorado

More Bicycling With a Good Friend

Back in Fruita, I also hung out with my friend, Cullen.  He has a beautiful wife and two daughters, and they are movers and shakers in the Fruita community.  I feel we are growing to have a very special friendship. It turns out he wanted to bicycle back to Moab with me - a 100-mile-journey.  He had never long-distanced biked before, but he did the whole thing on a one-speed!  And he was ahead of me most the time!  Okay, I carried the food for us in the trusty bike trailer.  But I also found loads of food in a campground dumpster on our way.  We ate high on the hog.  Our ride was spectacularly gorgeous, but I was, for some odd reason, feeling like quite an old man on that bike trip.  It started pouring rain the last few miles of the trip.  My friend Pete was gracious enough to offer Cullen and me his couches that night.  Cullen's and my mutual friend, Ken, drove Cullen and his bike back to Fruita.  

Me, Cullen, and my Dad (Richard)
at my parents' house
in Fruita, Colorado,
preparing to cycle to Moab

Hanukkah-Thanksgiving Treat

So, I was back in Moab, ready for a good rest, as my life had been pretty packed till then.  But I wasn't getting off that easy.  Within the hour after Cullen and Ken had left, I just barely sat down in the library when a journalist for a French magazine showed up.  I knew he was coming sometime, but didn't realize he'd come that early.  Yeah, the book has been translated into French, so they sent him out here.  He actually flew in from Israel, his home.  I forgot he was a journalist, he was such a good-natured, un-business-like dude who liked to hang out.  A day or two later, the photographer, Stefan Ruiz, came, along with his partner, Carol - another lovely and down-to-earth couple.  We all went up a canyon and camped at one of my "decoy" caves.

The day before Thanksgiving, the Israeli journalist said he wanted to go to Arches National Park and invited me to go with him.  As we were driving up there, he asked me what my plans were for Thanksgiving the next day.  I told him I planned to go to the Moab community Thanksgiving dinner - a very fun event.  I said I usually spend Thanksgiving with my parents, but it didn't look like it would happen this year.

"Well, let's go to Fruita, then!" he said with a big smile.  He made a u-turn away from Arches Park and we instead headed to Fruita.  So I surprised my parents again. He had coffee with us, and my parents, being Judeo-philes, were elated talking with a real live Israeli.  And we talked about Hanukkah, the first day of which happened to fall on Thanksgiving day this year.  He then headed back to Moab.  The next day I had Thanksgiving dinner with my parents, my brother, Ron, his wife, Aggie, and her brother, Bob, and my other sister-in-law, Elaine, and we pulled out two sets of 9 candles and lit them in the front and back windows for Hanukkah.

That weekend Hadrien decided to send Stefan, the photographer, out to my parents', too.  So he came with Carol, and he got shots of them.  He took some pictures with some of the last Polaroid film on earth, too, and gave us a couple of them.  The film was so old it was a little washed out, so I photo-shopped this one a bit:

Me,  my Mom (Laurel), and my Dad (Richard)
Fruita, Colorado
Their 65th Wedding anniversary is coming up in May

I was thinking I'd share some philosophizing brewing in my head, but I somehow lost inspiration to share it right now.  But I am inspired to share this little thing, a short "lesson" I just wrote on Facebook (yeah, I'm plugged into even Facebook):

Lost Ancient Arts 101. 

Lesson 1: How to apologize:

"I hurt you and I was wrong." Period.

"I didn't intend... bla bla bla" and "I'm sorry you feel hurt" are ego parading itself as love. 

The hows and whys of my harmful actions are my problem and nobody else's.  Nobody else's. 

"The road to hell is paved with good intentions" is another myth created by ego parading itself as love. 

If my intentions were healthy, they would have produced healthy results.