ISO a Stronger Connection

{*Published after the fact, back in the big city. I miss the quiet; my brain feels rattled already on a particularly noisy night in my ‘hood.}

I say all the time that I need to unplug more. All. The. Time. What does it take for me take to actually do this at this point in the frightfully embarrassing addiction/dependency game? Sad as it is, the physical absence of a strong WiFi signal, allowing me to power down and attention up. Tune in. Reconnect. Reboot. Re-root.

To listen. Really listen.

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The wind is the loudest thing I hear—and, now, also the glug glug glugging of paddles powering by on the nearby lake. I tune in more, and I notice that’s not all…more instruments contribute to this background playlist; there is a bird’s stuttering whistle, a neighbor’s faint sneeze, a cloth cabin strap’s boomeranging zinnngggg, a dog’s high-pitched yelp. I kick off my flops, cos I want to feel the pine needles under my toes, the Earth under the soles of my city feet.

The breeze blows, and I am cold, but I am happy. I am alone under this verdant canopy—just me and the trees and the slowly-lowering afternoon sun. (Oh, and that robin over there popping, hopping through a pine cone obstacle course of sorts.)

I try to read or journal or write or anything, but I get stuck watching the light dapples dance on the cabin “roof” next door. There is everything to see, everything to do—but nothing all at once.

This attentiveness, it is rare. It is needed. I vow (yet again) to get it back.

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Spring Day Musings

I am forever saying I need to break my addiction to/reliance on my phone, and I am feeling renewed inspiration to curb this bad habit after reading Rachel’s recent post. It’s not rocket science; I just highly suspect that my attachment to that lil machine, as well as to social media and my computer in general, doesn’t serve me well. It makes me more anxious, and it takes me out of the present. Big-time.

For example, on a day like today, a BEAUTIFUL, blue-skied Seattle day (welcome, Spring!), I was out on a wander (I took the longgggg route to the post office to mail some packages). But instead of enjoying it, I realized I was constantly checking my phone and feeling annoyed at the empty inbox and feeling guilty for this freedom, for all this time on my hands. But what am I doing with my life? kept rolling around up in that noggin. Stories. Ahh, the stories!

I am in a bit of a holding pattern at present (yep, again), one of those pesky, recurring freelance freeze-frames that test my patience and my ability to trust. But then today I started thinking: why am I not allowing myself to just relish this downtime and this beautiful place and all the simple pleasures that surround me? I would if I were on vacation or off on a global walkabout (like several of my friends are doing right now….). So why not now? What’s the difference?

So I forced myself to shut off my phone for a couple hours (okay, maybe only an hour-and-a-half…baby steps, people:)). I made myself really take it all in, to really SEE, to really listen. So much beauty!

The wind chimes, the dancing prayer flags, the seaplane engines, the gardening neighbors, the sunbathing black cat, the bike bells, the splash of ducks’ feet skating across the surface of the canal to secure safe landing. (And, I kid you not, a disintegrating tag (label?) floating in the water that read “CHILL.”)

Here are a few captures of the gorgeous day, taken before my phone went into glorious, peaceful OFF mode. This needs to be my new habit.

Happy Spring, y’all!

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Duly Noted!

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Putting this one in my back pocket as I begin my 2014 wish list…:)