Sunday, September 13, 2015

Enjoying Indian Summer on the Oregon Coast

A feeling of freedom as the waves, the wind, the sunshine and beauty of  this place embrace our tired yet eager bodies as we enjoy one last camping trip together before colder days and longer nights make camping difficult until springtime returns.
    With a hefty, bracing tailwind and soft,  forgiving sand we walk at a brisk pace, limbs eager to walk with these primal  forces gently pushing  us toward pleasure we seldom feel when the air is dry and hot, the skies polluted with so many fires this summer. A five in the afternoon  walk at home is uninviting this time of year.  And here we share the simple tasks-dishes to wash, water to fetch and boil,  meals to dream up from the cooler (and fresh albacore tuna from the Port Orford dock store) and cook on the Coleman stove.  We share touch, laughter over our meals, and a chance to enjoy our lovely surroundings as well as being together, away from our often busy lives and appointments that don't allow this kind of one-on-one time to slow down and savor rest and activities we both so enjoy.
   So often the news can be depressing and  even overwhelming.  Here life has a simpler rhythm that soothes and beckons us to gaze at the star-filled evenings, play in the sand, watch the sea birds and even a playful whale cruising the kelp  beds.  Here we are able to leave our home distractions aside and meet as two adults who have both survived turbulent times and heartache in our families, in our personal choices that have been tough at times.  We are ready to embrace and honor one another not in a traditional pattern  of submission and domination, or possessiveness, or  clinging.  We share a deeply human, more open, humble and grateful love that is consider and  gentle, one where two solitudes protect, greet and treasure one another; this stage has not come easily,  for  we've both had to do our inner work and discover what our own gifts are, and where we're  still needing to unlearn our conditioning.  This is the work of a lifetime, and it requires being able to communicate as honestly and openly as possible, forgiving ourselves (and each other) when we do make mistakes.
    Part  of me was afraid to take a trip this late, when it's already dark before eight, and the nights can be chilly.  We had good flashlights, nearby water and restrooms, and neighbors who were considerate.  Even the large camping dogs were quiet in the night; our only night visitors were raccoons who checked out our picnic table for any possible food left unprotected.  They dined on some grapes, but food that mattered was back in the van at night.  We had fun exploring, sharing,  just having these precious days to be together.  We never had time for the reading, for there were better things to do by daytime and it was too dark for books at  night.  It was a wonderful adventure, and affirmed how well we do camp  together!  We've done so in different places in our earlier years, but both of us love being outdoors on  the wild side, where nature calls the shots!   It is so much more fun to have a partner for trips like this, especially when we complement one  another. Time for me  to get to bed now, so I bid you all a good night's sleep as well!

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