Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Wednesday Morning Beach Report Post Women's March

Clouds copying the shape of Santa Cruz Island

Snowy Plovers hunkered down in any old depression in the sand that they find (in this case, footprints)  This is probably why they're endangered. A little more planning and forethought  would be better. 
The dredging operation in the harbor seems to be churning up food for the gulls and skuas.  They seem quite a bit larger and way more complacent than normal.

I'm resolving not to be complacent, choosing wisely where to direct my energy, and looking for good examples. I plan to keep my pussyhat visible.

Do you know about the  POSTCARDS? You don't have to print them in color. Black and white is way cheaper.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

More Women's March on Washington Signs and Photos

Of all the signs, the one immediately below is the one I found the most moving.

The sign above covers  a lot.

 There was a photo I saw on instagram of a big golden retriever wearing a sign that read, "even I don't grab pussy."

How about those UAW workers?

 Look closely. See the polar bear in the background? He's fighting for his life.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

We Marched! --The Women's March in Washington D.C.

The bus let me off a few blocks from the Capitol. I made my way to a church square and made plans to meet my family. When I looked up from my phone, I saw the streams of people heading toward the rally. I was at an intersection where two streets came together in a point so I could see the crowds on two separate blocks filling both sides of each street. A lump rose in my throat and then I  shifted into joy at being  a part of it all.

The crowd was so dense that it was impossible to see the stage, but we could at least hear the festivities after we changed positions a bit. The plans to formally begin an organized march from point A to point B morphed into the everywhere march. Marchers were visible in every direction for as far as the eye could see and way beyond

We were peaceful, kind, enthusiastic, compassionate, serious, and determined.

Some of my favorite signs are below. I'll post more tomorrow.

At the end of the day, thousands walked back to RFK Stadium to catch our buses. Some people came out of their houses to thank us for coming, Many of the houses had signs with Martin Luther King quotes.

Then we went home. Some of us anyway. On 1200 buses.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Here I Go!

I'm actually going to D.C. by plane, but this is more what it feels like. I hate to fly.

I'm terrified, but...

My dentist knitted a pussyhat and gave it to me!

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

What to Pack for the Women's March on Washington: Part Two/ the roller bag

My Equal Writes t-shirt from Shebooks seems like a no-brainer. Wooly stuff may not be necessary given the weather predictions, but I'm taking one sweater and some wool leggings, just in case. But honestly, it's gray and 59 degrees here in paradise right now; it's only supposed to be a few degrees cooler in D.C. on Saturday. Snow boots? probably unnecessarily heavy. A polar fleece hat with an attached balaclava?! Nah. It's weird though...that warm-ish weather. But lucky. Very lucky.

A few years ago, I barely made it make to CA between Snowmageddon and Snowpocalypse.

BWI airport in 2010 when the snowplow had to drive up to the roof of the parking structure in order to dump its load of snow on top of the pile.

View from my brother's front door in suburban Baltimore.

Monday, January 16, 2017

What to Pack for the Women's March on Washington

Part I: The Plane Ride

Books and more books. Inspiration is good.

Vitamins. Because being healthy is good.

Drink coupons. Because.

My mom's wristwatch. Because she would be over the moon in favor of this March.

Here's a poem from "When She Named Fire." This is a volume of poems subtitled "Contemporary Poetry by American Women," edited by Andrea Hollander Budy whom I had the pleasure of meeting in residency at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts a few years ago.

What We Need 
by Pamela Alexander

A roof over
three squares.
Warmth to wear, 
something to burn

in winter. Water
music: sheets
of rain hung out
to dry. Time, or

the habits of light,
A road that thins
in hills. Hills.
Once an image

sufficed; now I see
we must speak.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

These are Strange Times

The other day there was a cormorant walking down the sidewalk in my neighborhood. Cormorants are water birds. There are boat docks in this neighborhood and rocky outcropping just right for a cormorant to hang out and dry its wings (yes, cormorants have to dry out a bit from time to time). I have never seen a cormorant walking down the sidewalk.

A day before or maybe the day after the strolling cormorant I woke around 7 as I usually do. The sun had already risen. But when I went into the bathroom, I spotted the full moon above my neighbor's rooftop so bright that it might as well have been in a black sky.

Water birds on sidewalks, moons too bright to be real. Shocking new headlines every day. And the rain keeps pouring down in California. Hillsides have gone from brown to green almost overnight.

If all this can happen, well, maybe there will be other miracles. I'm still holding out hope that Donald Trump will decide that being president is just too much work. I'm still holding out hope that the ACA will somehow survive. That people with pre-existing conditions can get insurance and that an out-of-pocket cap will remain. And that the millions of people who got insurance under Obama will not lose it.

But I'm not going to stick my head in the sand. I'm going to Washington D. C. for the Women's March where I will proudly wear this button given to me by a T'ai Chi Chih student. She wore it for a march in '79.  I'd been out of college a few years by then and I was certain the ERA would come to be. It seemed so improbable that it would not be passed. Unbelievable.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Wednesday Morning Beach Report

The gods make soup. They bring it to a boil, skim off the foam, and touch the foam with their magic fingers. New creatures spring to life and race through their windy paradise.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

“Friendship is not half of the holy life, but all of it” the Buddha

No bird is an island

The quote above was the teaser in my daily email from Tricycle Magazine this morning. Wow. The idea sounded fantastic to me and sent my brain on a tangent about relationships and what it means to be a good friend.

When I finally got around to reading the article, I found that the quote did not mean quite what I thought it did. "...the Buddha’s statement refers to him, the Enlightened One, as the true spiritual friend because he guides us on the path to liberation." But the article went on to detail a spiritual friendship between two women monks, and deepened my thoughts about friendship and community (whatever community means to you--seems like the term gets tossed around a lot these days.)

"Community life does not just entail living with other people, but being a community. Living in the same place is very different from being a community. When you are in a community, your awareness goes out to the other people you live with—you see who needs encouragement, who needs guidance, and who needs a laugh."

There's been a lot in the news lately about loneliness and aging. Loneliness Can be Deadly for Elders;Friends are the Antidote is the title of an article by Paula Span published on the eve of the new year. There were similar pieces in the NYTimes in AprilSeptember, and December. The message in all of this writing kind of  validates my misinterpretation of the Buddha's quote, or at least gives weight to what I thought I read over my coffee.

I've had the good fortune to spend time with friends quite a bit this holiday season. I've enjoyed every minute. Thank you.